The Mid Range Narcissist – Five Facts


I have come across these five questions on a number of occasions. They are often regarded as the five fundamental queries which are raised about our behaviour. They are usually answered in a forthright manner by certain commentators in order to drive the message home. However, these observations and answers are provided by people who are not of our kind. They are naturally entitled to comment but the true value arises from someone who is on the other side of the fence, the perpetrator of the actions, the doer. Furthermore, the usual observations are provided without regard to the fact that narcissists are both similar yet different because we operate in certain schools which are linked to our degree of functioning and malign outlook. Accordingly, the traditional answer provided to one of these questions may be correct for the greater of our kind, but not for the mid-range or for the lesser narcissist. This time the focus falls on those narcissists which are from the Mid-Range school. It is usually the case that those who Mid-Range are not so much defined by what they are, but rather by what they are not. Thus if a behaviour which accords with a lesser narcissist is absent and a behaviour which accords with a greater narcissist is absent but the individual still displays behaviour which accord with narcissism as a whole, this person falls within the Mid-Range. The Mid-Range is neither a creature of complete knee-jerk reactions but nor is he or she fully aware of what he or she is and the capabilities that he or she may possess. He or she will not exhibit the driven, malign nature of those narcissists from the greater school. Here are the five answers to the five central questions.


  1. Do We Know What We Are Doing?


Whereas the lesser narcissist operates through instinctive responses and in a knee-jerk manner the Mid-Ranger knows what he or she is doing even though the response is largely still one of instinct. Most of the Mid Ranger’s response is instinctive but they have a greater awareness of what is happening, the Lesser does not really notice.

The Mid-Ranger will notice that they feel a sense of unease and being unsettled. This is when their fuel levels have dropped to a low level. They do not know that the sensation of unease is linked to the reduced fuel levels. The Mid-Ranger does know that provoking reaction in the person who is his or her primary source and other people causes the unease to diminish and vanish. He or she is aware of the link between the need to receive attention and the reduction in the state of unease. He or she realises that certain reactions do not always work (i.e. unemotional ones) and that some reactions are superior to others (the sense of unease vanishes quicker and is replaced with a feeling of power) but they do not know why that is. They do not realise the index of fuel supply governs their own state of power/unease. They do know what if they are praised they feel better, if you are made to cry, they feel better and if you are losing your temper because of something that they have done, they feel better.

  1. Do We Know That We Are Hurting You?


Akin to the lesser, the Mid-Ranger is aware of the hurt that is being caused, the major difference however is that the Mid-Ranger recognises that you are being hurt (since he possesses Cognitive Empathy) but he or she will never OWN the responsibility for that hurt. Thus, he may say

“I know you are hurt when I call you names, but if you just stopped trying to control me, then I would not have to do it.”

He knows the name-calling upsets you, he also is aware that your emotional response has a positive impact for him (although does not know why) but he will never accept that this behaviour is wrong or his fault.

The Mid-Ranger may also give some consideration to how this might be achieved whereas the Lesser just does it. This tends to be apparent with mainly Upper Mid-Rangers, Lower and Middle Mid Rangers still operate through an instinctive response.

The Mid-Ranger does not behave this way because of any innate malevolence but rather because he or she is aware that the evidence of pain on your part gives them a “good” feeling and lessens the unease which may appear. The Mid-Ranger knows that if he or she acts in a certain way, it will cause you upset. With the higher functioning Mid Ranger, he or she will take some time to evaluate how best to respond in a situation so that the “good” feeling can be obtained. This is why some Upper Mid-Rangers are often mistaken for Greaters because they have a degree of calculation to their actions.

The Mid-Ranger will be aware of what it is that you are doing which has generated contempt, irritation or annoyance. He will be able to provide you with a reason behind this sensation and moreover if there is no actual reason he is readily able to invent one. Whereas the lesser can only usually respond in a vague and amorphous fashion, the Mid-Range will provide you with a reason for this annoyance at your behaviour and why he or she is hurting you. It is most likely a lie, but a reason will be provided nevertheless.

  1. Do We Do This Deliberately?

The Mid-Ranger is deliberate in his or her behaviours but they remain governed by instinct. They do not know it is fuel, they do not know its true purpose but they are sufficiently aware and of sufficient function to link the provision of certain reactions by you to the settling and empowering effect it has on them. The Mid-Ranger is aware that he or she can provoke good and bad emotions from you and that these reactions serve a purpose.

They are also able to apply a wider range of manipulations from their repertoire as a consequence of their increased function. The response is an instinctive response but in some instances will be thought out and whilst the plotting and scheming is far removed from the grand scale of the greater narcissists, there is no doubting that the Upper Mid-Ranger will plan. He or she will consider how people can best serve them. This is not done from a malicious point of view but is more about working out what will serve him or her the best. The Mid-Ranger will consider which friends serve him best, who will make the best target and how the various people that are his fuel lines knit together. He does not behave in the random and chaotic fashion of the Lesser nor with the pinpoint, malicious accuracy of the greater but with a sense of organisation and planning so that he or she gets what he or she wants.

  1. Can We Control This Behaviour?


The Mid-Ranger is possessed of the ability to control his or her behaviour even though the majority of it is instinctive. Accordingly, he will respond to certain behaviours with his own set response but can exert some control, for instance keeping a lid on the ignited fury for a short time, since he recognises the situation demands a certain approach.

Since he or she is not a creature of base instinct like the lesser but adopts a more considered approach there is some thought given to how he or she should respond. The Mid-Ranger is not aware of why they ought to behave in this way, they only know that there is a way of behaving which suits them best and they need to tailor their responses and behaviours to accord with this way and this includes control. The Mid-Ranger only has so much control however and in situations where fuel levels plummet and there is a real or perceived threat of a primary source cessation then the Mid-Ranger will lose control when placed under such duress. This may occasionally manifest in the use of physical violence. The Mid-Ranger knows there will be consequences but is unable to contain the urgent need to “do something” and therefore control is lost. The Mid-Ranger is particularly prone to using the silent treatment as this represents a halfway house between exerting and losing control. He or she may be panicked into a sudden reaction but they do not lose control to such an extent that a frenzied response, by way of violence both physical and verbal may appear. Instead they vanish. The Mid-Ranger is also more likely to engage in emotional, financial and sexual abuse through planning and the greater subtleties and insidious nature attached to these particular machinations.

  1. Can We Stop It?

Yes, the Mid-Ranger can to some extent. Much of his behaviour is instinct. He truly considers himself to be a good person, he believes he is empathic and caring, he regards other people as the problem. He cannot understand why people have to be so unfair, so troublesome and why they cause him pain and anguish, since he has such a different perspective to you.

He has an awareness and therefore is able to decide that the behaviour can stop. Indeed, where the Mid-Ranger perceives an advantage to be acquired he will do so and amend his behaviour accordingly. Whereas the lesser narcissist will instigate a respite period instinctively without knowing why he is doing, his need to devalue will just abate and the golden period returns, the Mid-Ranger knows the value of a respite period and will grant it because he feels settled and prone to wanting the contrast of the positive fuel again. Similarly, when those fuel levels drop the Mid-Ranger knows to commence the devaluation again. His awareness and control enable him of her to stop the devaluing behaviour as and when it is required. He does not exercise this with regard to any sense of malevolence, like the greater, but rather it is driven by need. The Mid-Ranger could stop his or her abusive behaviour but will not do so if they perceive a need for it to continue. The lesser is unable to stop it because it “just happens”. Of the three schools, the Mid-Ranger is less volatile, less malicious but in some respects can be regarded as entirely culpable for the behaviours which are engaged in and that are doled out to his or her victims. The difficulty is however, you can regard the Mid Ranger as culpable but he or she will never accept any liability for their behaviour because they are automatically configured to reject any notion that they are at fault. Their default setting is always to block this, reject it and counter it – usually through Pity Plays, sulking, silent treatments, blame-shifting and projection.

31 thoughts on “The Mid Range Narcissist – Five Facts

  1. Mrs Blessing says:

    Hi HG,

    I have had my experience with a Mid range ,
    I had my suspicions that something was off but I couldn’t put my finger on it , I made analysises about his behavior and wrote it down to make sense of everything what was happening, I actually even confronted him with the facts in his Face ( my analysis about his behaviour ) things that just didn’t add up , and I think I spooked him a little since he always said :” You are a very dangerous woman .

    I have read allot of your articles and I must say thank you! Everything makes sense now and I never knew I was so close to the truth I just didn’t knew what I was dealing with , and I know now . And I finally have my closure

    I have be disengaged from (discarded) ever since I left ( I escaped ) and he didn’t took it well , he was wounded pretty bad since I was his IPPS and he wasn’t finished finding a replacement for me . ( devaluation, smearing campagnes , silent treatments, Hoover’s) charackter assasination etc it all took place .

    I am thankful to finally make sense of all of this .

    He used to watch allot of movies with me (Psychological movies ) , and I believe he was just studying my mind,
    To see how far I could connect the dots and find out what was going to happen before it all happened , I usually puzzled everything out before the movie ended . Predicting every step that would be taken .

    I also believe he watched allot of movies to take on the charackter traits .

    After I ( escaped) he said He didn’t want anything to do with me anymore ( blame shifting)

    That He wouldn’t allow me to control him anymore ( turned everything around ofcourse ) victim mentality

    I am just happy I guess that I know what I know now .
    Thank you!

    1. HG Tudor says:

      You are welcome and also welcome to the blog.I am pleased, but unsurprised that my work has assisted you to such an extent.

  2. Valerie says:

    Is it possible for a mid-range narc to go back to someone he dated briefly years ago and get into a formal relationship with her when she was discarded as “not marriage material” previously?

  3. W says:

    HG can an upper mid ranger grow into a lower great?

    1. HG Tudor says:


  4. DUTG says:

    I think part of my struggle in identifying my ex husband narc is because of the time that has lapsed. My memories of him are based on how he behaved as I escaped, knee jerk infantile and bullying reactions at him losing possessions, losing face, etc.

    When I do recall what it was like to live with him, I can see how he set up scenarios in advance, like getting a job requiring us to relocate and thus isolating me from friends and family, or deciding to do manual labor for charity but then using the resulting ‘injury’ to his already compromised back to convalesce and be away from work on medical leave for weeks, or by planting seeds in his friends and family like he was the poor victim of me. I had the privilege of seeing his alternate bank accounts , post office boxes, my invented emotional abuse in his letters to friends. I witnessed the sulking and ignoring and scowling and dark stare of disgust at me while we cohabited.

    He was college educated, a military officer, then in positions of management in high paying jobs, but he only keeps them for a couple of years due to emotion kicking in at him not being recognized as the king he is. All of the above examples just seem so juvenile to me in hindsight which makes me brand him a lesser. I think if he could have exerted more control over his emotions he could have been ‘greater’ as was very good looking and intelligent.

    HG, I’m just trying to get these levels down in my head using ex husband as an example. I mentioned on your #metoo article I think Weinstein is a lesser due to the lack of impulse control. Am I grasping anything here or missing the concept? If not, can you point me to some articles to help get my grounding down. I’ve not been here long. I understand there are levels and class (not socioeconomic) traits? Thank you.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      There are plenty of articles with regard to the schools (just search as against lesser, mid-range and greater) and also see Sitting Target.

  5. angel says:


    Does mid-ranger can level up and become greater-ranger?

    If narc does malign hoover drained negativ fuel, is it posible that after period of time he appears with benign hoover for positiv fuel and try to return golden period again?

    1. HG Tudor says:


      1. angel says:

        How many times he will do that, is it not enough after several such circles to give up completely?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          As many times as the Hoover Trigger and Hoover Execution Criteria facilitate.

  6. DUTG says:

    I’m grateful for all of the comments from readers with real life examples. They’re very helpful.

  7. Findinglife11 says:

    Got that right

  8. All out of Fuel says:

    Okay my final post on this… re: the mid losing control.
    If the mid doesn’t go silent and he loses control (for example flipping out over something and getting angry)…. why do they usually “apologize” ? I notice that when mid erupts ( and then goes silent) that usually he will eventually apologize the next time we talk. His “apologies” consist of a similar template. He says things like “ I lost my shit today.” Or “I behaved badly and I was out of line” and then “For that I am so sorry” but then he will also add on “ I never lose my shit like that with anybody, except for you! You are the only person in the last 20 years of my life that does this to me!”

    HG, if apology isn’t genuine why give it? Doesn’t it wound you to “apologize”?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      No, apologising does not wound.

      False contrition allows the continuation of control over you, it draws fuel from the recipient and cons the recipient into thinking the narcissist is capable of contrition/is changing/recognises the error of their ways and thus the victim is duped further. It will also be used with third parties for fuel and facade management (“I shouldn’t have lost my temper, I apologised to my wife afterwards, sorry you had to see that but I am under a lot of pressure at work because of…..” – thus third party facade is managed, fuel will be obtained but it is not an actual act of contrition because the narcissist has not accepted accountability because he or she blames the pressure of work instead (which may even be invented anyway).

      1. All of of Fuel says:

        Oh geez….nail on the head again. “I am sorry you had to see that” “I am sorry you were subjected to that” was another frequent one. He backed it up further with “I never lose myself like that, I snapped today, I don’t know what came over me. I need a break from you”

        I know I have said this before but everything they say really is so textbook.

        HG, does all of your kind offer this “false contrition” or is this just typical mid ranger behavior?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Mid Range.

  9. All out of Fuel says:

    I just noticed another similarity with the example you posted with something I heard…

    “I know you are hurt when I call you names, but if you just stopped trying to control me, then I would not have to do it.”

    Here is a similar explanation that I heard:

    “I know you feel hurt when I ignore your messages, but the more you message me the more I have a tendency to ‘shut down’ I cannot take this frequency … you need to just cool it okay? If you calm down I will call you tomorrow sometime, does that sound okay?”

    It starts out with “I know you are” or “I know you feel” … then it quickly shifts to it being my fault “the more you do blah blah blah…” sometimes that’s it but other times I will get an “offer” of a time when he will talk. And if that’s the case he always ends the sentence with “Okay?”

    Meh. 🤯🙄

    1. Jnine says:

      Wow. Mine told me if I would only stop trying to control him I would see a 360 degree turn in HIS behavior and it was always my fault. If I would do this and that. I made him call me names. I made him leave. I made him do every wrong thing he did to me and I was the only one who could change or fix it. We did the silent treatment almost daily. AOOF…it sounds like our MRNs were brothers. I cannot fathom that I spent so much time in the absurdity. I remember one day towards the end we ran into one another on the road I live on and he pulled over to talk. I was approaching his vehicle when he looked at me right in my eyes and said….”you’ve had enough haven’t you”? “You are done with all this”? I took that opportunity to explain the why’s and what fors but in hindsight I think he knew I didn’t feel the same for him and it was time to move on.

  10. All out of Fuel says:

    “Of the three schools, the Mid-Ranger is less volatile, less malicious but in some respects can be regarded as entirely culpable for the behaviours which are engaged in and that are doled out to his or her victims.”

    This sentence pretty much nails it. there have been so many times when I have said “Surely he knows he what he is doing” …. because some of the shit he would say or do just seems like he had to know what he was doing. When I called him out on shit he admitted to being hypocritical, he admitted to being contradictory, but then as soon as he would say those things he would quickly say “BUT you read too much into what I say vs. what I do blah blah”… well yes I do, LOL. But that doesn’t change the fact that you’re acting like that!!!!! The other times he would just vacate himself and say “you’re driving me crazy please leave me alone, no more talking today” or just go silent.

    It is so frustrating trying to make sense of this. But your explanations do help.

    1. K says:

      My MMRN was just like yours. He would make fun of me and watch for my response, most of the time I ignored him or laughed.

      He said: That didn’t bother you, when I said,” You dress like my mother?”

      Me: No, why? Did you want it to bother me? (And I laughed at him)

      He, also, admitted that he cut me off all the time during conversations, and he said he did it with other people, too.

      He knew he was a manipulator and he said this often: You can’t bullshit a bullshitter.

      1. gabbanzobean says:


        LOL your story reminds me of:

        Him: “You were not expecting me to call you, were you?”
        Me: “No not really” (said emotionless)
        Him: “Well that just goes to show you that I can still surprise you, right?”

        Yet a few weeks before that it was:

        Him: “I hate talking on the phone. It does not matter who it is. I am like that with everyone”

        Me: (pointing out his inaccuracy) “You used to talk to me on the phone for hours…”

        Him: “I guess I am getting anti-social the older I get….”

        He often said “I fake it till I make it”. Sounds about right. 2 peas in a Narc pod.

      2. All of of Fuel says:

        Sorry, I forgot to reply to this one…

        “He knew he was a manipulator and he said this often: You can’t bullshit a bullshitter.”

        Mine said: “I am impervious to psychological analysis”


      3. K says:

        It is amazing how alike they are; they have the Playbook on how to behave like a midrange narcissist wired into them. Your MMRN is impervious to psychological analysis because he thinks he is so damn superior to everyone, just like mine.

  11. Jnine says:

    HG you make no contact (with you) very difficult lol Your insight makes me feel as if you were a casual observer to the Lifetime movie titled MY CRAZY FUCKED UP LIFE. Have we met? Lol On a serious note, I have questioned his particular variety of Narcissist at times. This post leaves no doubt in my mind. Clarity is a beautiful thing. 💪

  12. DUTG says:

    The why or from what narc level doesn’t really matter at the end of the day. While it helps with understanding their level of intent and malice, I need to accept the impact their treatment had on me me regardless of the why and stay clear.

    1. Jess says:

      My ULN and the LGN in my life were very similar. It’s uncanny… but HG videos actually explained why. When I met my MMRN I was totally fooled even though I vetted him. It fell apart after three months which is a short amount of time for me. I had the most questions bc he was so different from the other two. He was very non violent, generally pleasant, very sexually engaging. His stranger mode was so disturbing bc of the contrast so I would disengage at this time. It was the deepest and most wounding of all bc he got very close to me. The Mid range keeps a small fuel matrix so I was engulfed by him. We spent a ton of time together. I never saw him in heated fury but he had days where he wouldn’t stop u til he made me snap. A big change from the other two.

      Beware that another range of narcissist doesn’t sneak in. We tend to look for something different the next time. Now that I have dated one of each I’m feeling confident that I’ll see them coming . Here’s hoping .

      1. Kim e says:

        Jess. What do you consider a small fuel matrix?

  13. DUTG says:

    Unless a higher causes the least emotional, physical and financial damage, I don’t think I’ve encountered one. I’ll await the five answers for a greater or search here if it’s been posted before and get back to you.

  14. DUTG says:

    OK, as mentioned on other posts, I’ve been reading. So far since landing here and educating myself, I’m convinced I’ve yet to encounter a greater. Lord please spare me as ex husband (me starring as IPPS) seems to be a Lesser sans physical abuse and recent narc (me starring as unsuspecting IPSS or DLS via Internet only) seems Mid-Range. I pray as I grow in knowledge that I’m not graduating to receive a diploma in the school of Greater. I’m here to learn so as to protect myself. Thank you so much HG. I see how other sources of information have failed as painting them all with the same broad stroke, and I apologize for doing the same in my responses which regurgitated that understanding. I see how that previous information I received in ex husband recovery prevented me from being able to spot those from other levels. Again, I hope I’m spared a real-life lesson from a Greater. And, for your critics, I don’t think I’ll be victimized by you here. I digest your writings in light of my own experiences, higher education, religious studies and personal faith to form my own thoughts. Ironically, much of your writings are in tune and not contrary to natural law and religious studies. Very congruent and complimentary. But that’s for another time.

  15. Britni says:

    This is phenomenal. Thank you for this HG. Answers lots of questions I had.

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