A Very Popular Narcissist?
Taylor Swift. Having sold more than 50 million albums—including 32 million in the U.S.—and 150 million singles, Swift is one of the best-selling music artists of all time. As a songwriter, she has received awards from the Nashville Songwriters Association and the Songwriters Hall of Fame, and was included in Rolling Stone‘s 100 Greatest Songwriters of All Time in 2015. Her other accolades include 10 Grammy Awards, one Emmy, 23 Billboard Music Awards, six Guinness world records, and appearances in Time‘s 100 most influential people in the world (2010, 2015, 2019). She also ranked first in the Forbes Celebrity 100 (2016 and 2019), and was the youngest to be featured in the magazine’s listing of the 100 most powerful women.
Narcissist? Let’s find out.
My explanatory observations are in bold italics. As ever, for the hard of understanding, this is an analysis with regard to whether the individual is a narcissist or not. It is not a judgement about whether the person is “good” or “bad”, so if you are a fan of Ms Swift´s music and approach the discussion missing the point about it being an analysis I will just shake it off.
Childhood and Teenage Years
Taylor Alison Swift was born on the 13th of December 1989 in Reading, Pennsylvania. She tells two different stories in regards to how she got named. (This raises a suggestion of fluidity of self).
The first version claims that she was named after singer and songwriter James Taylor, the soft and gentle songwriter of “Fire and Rain” that her parents adored. The second version however, claims that her Mother wanted to give her an androgynous name with the expectation that Taylor would be working in business one day, so people should not be able to discern her gender from her business card. (Either version shows aspects of grandiosity).
Both of Taylor´s parents worked in finance. Thanks to Taylor´s Dad´s position at Merill Lynch, Taylor enjoyed a privileged upbringing in a wealthy household and was also a 4.0 student. (Potential gilded lifestyle which may have formed a lack of control environment). She grew up on a Christmas tree farm with a grape arbor and seven horses in eastern Pennsylvania, while Swift´s father commuted to work.
It was later said that in the school she went to, you were judged by the brand of handbag you brought to school. That is a pretty high bar for middle schoolers, indicating that the school harboured many children from an equally well-off family. Of course, Taylor had no trouble meeting the required standards in the handbag department and later on, her parents gifted her a champagne coloured Lexus convertible to drive to school with. (Again this supports a gilded lifestyle which in itself is not determinative but is an indicator of entitlement and the lack of control of environment).
These details are especially interesting, given that Taylor has for years now maintained the sob story that she was a complete outcast and bullied by the other students constantly. (Revision of history) (Blame shifting). She credits these traumatic memories as the cause for her “search for approval“ as she calls it and what caused the origin of her “Squad“, that will be referred to later. (The search for approval equates to a recognition of the need for “fuel” the lifeblood of a narcissist, whereby the emotional output of another individual, caused by the words and/or actions of the narcissist sustains the narcissist and allows the narcissist to recognise that control is being exerted over the relevant individual or individuals). The formation of a squad demonstrates the creation of an extensive fuel matrix (the body of individuals which a narcissist ensnares in order to provide the narcissist with fuel, character traits and residual benefits) and the creation of a Coterie.
Taylor´s image is that of the adorable underdog, one which she seeks to perpetuate at any given opportunity. (Facade management) In several interviews – most notably her documentary called “Journey to Fearless“ – she talked about these awful experiences and how she managed to prevail and succeed against all odds. (Grandiosity) A big part of this narrative was her assertion that she taught herself how to play the guitar, because her parents didn’t want her to pursue a career in music at first, and that she had to beg them for years to take her to Nashville. She says that a “computer repair guy“ came to their house to fix the computer and taught her a few chords on the guitar and she taught herself full time after that.
This “computer repair guy“, while he does repair computers for a living sometimes, is also a guitar teacher from Nashville named Ronnie Cremer, who taught Taylor the guitar for over 6 hours every week under the insistence of Taylor´s Mother. (Note the earlier story about teaching herself full time is a lie and evidences the concept of victimhood – “I taught myself against the odds” ” I had to beg my parents (because they would not let me do what I wanted)
He said Taylor´s Mother was tyrannical and would yell at him and verbally abuse him over the phone if he tried to do fewer hours with Taylor to focus on his own business. (On the basis that Mr Cremer´s evidence about Swift Senior is correct this raises the suggestion that there may well already have been another narcissist in the household which would account for a genetic predisposition towards narcissism and the relevant agent to create a lack of control environment for Taylor Swift by being controlling towards the young Ms Swift).
After coming out with his own story of events, Ronnie Cremer said that he did not feel good about letting people know how Taylor´s PR Team has repeatedly been lying about the story. He said he is never the type to begrudge somebody else success and understands why they didn’t want to tell people that “a 36 year old bald guy“ taught her how to play the guitar, because that would not sell as well. However, he not only taught her how to play the guitar, but also introduced her to a program that was useful for songwriting and recording and explained to her how to formulate a song, which was likely the start of her writing, as well. (Nobody would have been overly concerned about this being the truth in the formation of the artist and a non-narcissist would have no issue with it being publicised. This raises the suggestion that the manufacturing of the backstory may not have come from Ms Swift and instead she might be the victim herself of a music mogul narcissist. That must be kept in mind.)
In regards to Taylor´s family, Ronnie Cremer said that Taylor´s mother was the one to push her not only into starting to make country music, but was also acting like a full-blown stage mom right from the start.( This controlling influence from someone who is meant to provide a caring environment provides evidence of the formation of a lack of control environment which is integral to the creation of a narcissist, albeit, its presence does not automatically mean that someone will become a narcissist)
Ronnie said that he was also trying to help Taylor build a website during the time he taught her, but that her mom Andrea made that incredibly difficult. He stated that if he would not drop everything he was doing to help with whatever Taylor´s website needed, Andrea would “lose her mind“ and further described her as a bull in a china shop. Taylor´s mother Andrea and father Scott had a bad relationship as well, with Scott telling Ronnie “I got a wife that doesn’t love me. I’m trying to help my daughter out and do all the right things and my wife could care less.“. (Once again it appears that a narcissist was prevalent in the household already)
Ronnie Cremer also spoke of one particular incident that makes it clear that Andrea´s horrid behaviour extended to her daughter as well.
Taylor is the older of two children, her younger brother Austin was quite chubby as a kid, while Taylor was slender. One time, her brother Austin wanted food from the fast food restaurant Taco Bell and Taylor said that she would like some as well. Their mother, Andrea then brought home food from Taco Bell but only gave it to Austin and told Taylor that “nobody wants to see a fat pop star“. Apart from the horrible treatment of her daughter, the phrasing “pop star“ is interesting, since it not only contradicts itself with the assertions that her parents did not want her to become a musician, but more importantly, that they said she only ever liked country and pop songs as an “experiment“. (Presence of narcissist in formative years, revision of history, telling of lies.)
In a Rolling Stone interview from 2009, 19 year old Taylor promoted her album “Fearless“, the journalist alluded to Taylor´s need to control her environment and states “Swift likes to do everything the right way, and most of the time that means she likes to do everything herself.” (Rigidity of approach, application of control.)
Love and Relationships
To state that Swift has had many relationships which are high profile, is an understatement. She also uses her experiences and those of others in her music. There is nothing inherently narcissistic in using your experiences in music, art, literature, film or just talking about them, after all, they are your experiences, however, it is the manner in which Swift uses them that lights up many narcissistic indicators.
In a 2009 Rolling Stone interview, the journalist commented that
„The illogic of love is unsettling to Swift, who has a hard time understanding it with her supremely rational mind. Music, for her, is a way of expressing feelings that are largely repressed or absent.“
Swift, when talking about her music went on to explain that about half of her songs aren’t even about herself, but about her friends´ relationships. She further stated that she loved “watching and studying love“ which indicates a very distant viewpoint on this emotion and an inherently formulaic approach to songwriting, that is very unlike what one would expect of her bubbly persona and a teenage songwriter in general.
This is especially noticeable in a song called “15“, which she wrote about her best friend Abigail getting her heart broken by a boy. The song mentions Abigail by name several times and also includes slightly condescending lyrics such as “And when you’re fifteen and somebody tells you they love you you’re gonna believe them” or “And Abigail gave everything she had to a boy who changed his mind.” have a strange undertone to them. She then proceeds to console her friend by telling her that she’ll do things greater than dating the boy on the football team. Using her friends experiences in this way demonstrates a sense of entitlement, poor boundary recognition and a lack of emotional empathy.
Here is a timeline of just some the relationships the 29 year-old Swift has been involved in
Joe Jonas (July 2008 to October 2008)
Lucas Till (March 2009 to April 2009)
Taylor Lautner (August 2009 to December 2009)
John Mayer (December 2009 to February 2010)
Cory Monteith (April 2010 to May 2010)
Jake Gyllenhall (October 2010 to January 2011)
Eddie Redmayne (October 2011 to January 2012)
Zac Effron (February 2012 to March 2012)
Conor Kennedy (July 2012 to October 2012)
Harry Styles (December 2012 to January 2013 with a rumoured fling in April 2012)
Calvin Harris (February 2013 to June 2016)
Tom Hiddleston (June 2016 to September 2016)
(Of those known relationships, there are twelve in an 8 year period. The high turnover of intimate, romantic relationships, the short duration of many and the close proximity between the end of one relationship and the commencement of another are all commensurate with the behaviour of a narcissist whereby repeated romantic narcissists form a major part of the narcissists fuel matrix. The idealisation of an individual and their ensnarement followed by devaluation and their eventual disengagement, is the hallmark of the narcissistic dynamic between narcissist and the Intimate Partner Primary Source (a boyfriend, fiancé or husband. This list is highly indicative just as a list, but what if Ms Swift is just “unlucky in love” and she keeps attracting narcissists (and there is no doubt there ARE some narcissists in that list) so let’s look at some of the relationships.
Swift claims Joe Jonas broke up with her over a 27 second phone call. (Victimhood)
Joe’s side of the story is this “For those who have expressed concern over the ’27 second’ phone call, I called to discuss feelings with the other person,” he writes. “Those feelings were obviously not well received. I did not end the conversation. Someone else did. Phone calls can only last as long as the person on the other end of the line is willing to talk.” . (Jonas´call presented as Challenge Fuel to Swift. Her need for control meant that she asserted control by ending the telephone call and then in order to manage her facade and blame shift, she maintained that he broke up with her and did so in a 27 second phone call, suggesting he was blunt and callous.)
Swift did not stop there however.
Swift is well known for writing about her supposed heartbreak in her songs. This is not only a clever manipulation to engender sympathy and sell records, but it enables her to have The Last Word (The Last Word is a common narcissistic manipulation design to assert control by making a final statement against another individual.) Indeed, Swift has found herself lampooned about this, the parody YouTube site “Key of Awesome” noted this in their excellent take on “Shake it Off” with the lines
“if you break my heart you’ll end up in a shitty song”
Swift repeatedly uses her songs as a platform to assert control over past boyfriends. She does so without naming them but in a way which leaves little doubt as to who she is referring to (the narcissistic step of plausible deniability and creating Shifting Sands)
With regard to Joans, Swift dealt with this by writing a song about him called “Forever and Always“, and uploaded a video on the then popular Platform MySpace. In this video, she holds up a Joe Jonas doll and remarked
“See, this one even comes with a phone so it can break up with other dolls.“.
Swift did not stop there, but later proceeded to call him out on Ellen, stating that when she finds the perfect guy, she won’t even be able to remember the one who broke up with her over a 27-second phone call. She has apologised about this incident in her last appearance at the Ellen show earlier this year, (false contrition, facade management) but thoroughly enjoys the attention that came with this scandal at the time. (fuel)
She went on to write a song called “Style”, about Harry Styles, who has refused to speak about this in public, despite having been given plenty of ammunition by Taylor. She opened the Grammys in 2013 with her song “We are never getting back together” and used the opportunity to put on a fake British accent for the line “I still love you”, mocking her ex in front of millions. (Exhibition of the need for control, Provocation and The Last Word).
The song “Dear John“ is about calling out John Mayer for allegedly playing with her when she was too young to understand what was happening
/don’t you think 19 is too young to be played by/ your dark twisted games when I loved you so?/
John Mayer described this song as “a humiliating experience“ in his Rolling Stone interview, quote:
“It made me feel terrible […] because I didn’t deserve it. I’m pretty good at taking accountability now, and I never did anything to deserve that. It was a really lousy thing for her to do.”
Taylor Swift did not consider it necessary to inform Mayer about this song either, noting she would be “dropping hints“ in her lyrics so everyone would know. She said that there was no need for her to go write E-mails about it. This only added to John Mayers shock:
Mayer now tells Rolling Stone that he learned about Swift’s feelings directly from her song. “I never got an e-mail. I never got a phone call,” he says. “I was really caught off-guard, and it really humiliated me at a time when I’d already been dressed down. I mean, how would you feel if, at the lowest you’ve ever been, someone kicked you even lower?” (Provocation, Lack of Emotional Empathy, Revision of History)
He went on to state that Taylor Swift abuses her talent in this manner:
Mayer also takes issue with “Dear John” as a musician. “I will say as a songwriter that I think it’s kind of cheap songwriting,” he says. “I know she’s the biggest thing in the world, and I’m not trying to sink anybody’s ship, but I think it’s abusing your talent to rub your hands together and go, ‘Wait till he gets a load of this!’ That’s bullshit.”
Calvin Harris and Tom Hiddleston
A further act of manipulation with regard to romantic manipulations with regards to her relationship was the love triangle with Calvin Harris and Tom Hiddleston, that preceded the creation of her latest album „Reputation“. Taylor Swift was in a relationship with Calvin Harris for 15 months total, but seamlessly moved to Tom Hiddleston in June 2016. (Triangulation)
Taylor Swift and Calvin Harris were said to have split up amicably, but it was later confirmed that Taylor had met Tom Hiddleston even before the breakup. (Infidelity, triangulation, lack of emotional empathy, sense of entitlement).
The relationship between Taylor Swift and Tom Hiddleston was often referred to as a very public “whirlwind romance“, given that everything from the first time they met, to their dance at the 2016 Met Gala and some “paparazzi shots“ of them kissing on the stones of Rhode Island was out there for the world to see. (Sense of entitlement, love bombing through swift entanglement, the phrase “whirlwind romance” is a euphemism for the narcissistic manipulation of love bombing whereby a romantic victim is ensnared very quickly for the purposes of bringing the individual under the control of the narcissist)
One of the most notable incidents was when Tom Hiddleston was photographed with a white “I ♥ T.S.“ tank top at Taylor´s 4th of July party.
Two years later, in the video “Look What You Made Me Do” (Classic blame shifting comment of a narcissist) Swift reminded everyone of this noteworthy moment by having several gay people dance around her in high heels, wearing black “I ♥ T.S.“ tank tops and fawning over her. (Provocation, lack of emotional empathy, grandiosity).
However, Swift continues with her triangulation, since Harris does not escape either. In the same video. she lends an eerie nod to Harris by crawling out of a graveyard next to a headstone reading “Nils Sjoberg,” which was the pseudonym the singer used to conceal her identity on Harris and Rihanna’s hit track, “This is What You Came For”.
In a 2017 GQ Interview, Tom Hiddleston had previously explained what this tank top incident had actually been about:
“The truth is, it was the Fourth of July and a public holiday and we were playing a game and I slipped and hurt my back. And I wanted to protect the graze from the sun and said, ’Does anyone have a T-shirt?’ And one of her friends said, ’I’ve got this.’ ” The friend pulled out the “I ♥ T.S.” tank top that Taylor’s friends are contractually obligated to own. “And we all laughed about it. It was a joke.”
As for Tom Hiddleston, his PR-Team insists that he was the one to end the relationship with Taylor. She let her lyrics speak for her and wrote him the song “Getaway Car“ in which she describes him as a love-sick fool who never had a chance with her to begin with. (Lack of emotional empathy, haughtiness, grandiosity, The Last Word)
The lyrics include:
I struck a match and blew your mind/ but I didn’t mean it/ And you didn’t see it
She also confirms that she was the one to break up with him, as she ended the song with:
I’m in a getaway car / I left you in a motel bar / Put the money in the bag and I stole the keys / That was the last time you ever saw me
Of course if the contradiction is pointed out to her, she will adopt plausible deniability and state that the song is not about Hiddleston, except of course it clearly is.
When confronted about her recurring behaviour of calling out ex boyfriends in public in another Rolling Stones Article from 2012, Taylor Swift is quoted as follows:
“In every one of my relationships,” she says, “I’ve been good and fair. What happens after they take that for granted is not my problem. Chances are if they’re being written about in a way they don’t like, it’s because they hurt me really badly. Telling a story only works if you have characters in it. I don’t think it’s mean. I think it’s mean to hurt someone in a relationship.” (Victimhood, facade management, Provocation, lack of accountability)
The continuing need for control and manipulative behaviour has accordingly manifested through her using her platform as a major international artist to attack those she has deemed to have wronged her. The track record of short and frequent relationships, as stated above, tells it own story, but her need to then attack and in some cases humiliate the individuals she had a romantic relationship with demonstrates a lack of emotional empathy and a need for control. An empathic person would not behave in such a way.
Swift however goes even further. She adopts plausible deniability by not naming the individual outright but then demonstrates she knows exactly what she is doing and has neither guilt, conscience or genuine remorse about doing so. She rubs her victims´faces in it further. This is evidenced by the Saturday Night Live Monologue.
In her Saturday Night Live monologue, she came on the stage with her guitar and a song she wrote for this show especially, called “Monologue Song: La la la”. Swift then proceeded to happily strum her guitar and grin into the camera, singing
/I like to write songs about douchebags who cheat on me/but I’m not gonna say that/In my monologue/I like to write their names into songs so they’re ashamed to go out in public/ but I’m not gonna say that/ In my monologue/
Salt added to the wounds of her victims. (Exertion of control, lack of emotional empathy and provocation, haughtiness, grandiosity).
Swift has her self proclaimed “Squad“, which consists of an army of beautiful models and actresses (and Lena Dunham) that regularly flank the singer on glamorous getaways and red carpet events. (Grandiosity and facade management).
Actress Hailee Steinfeld was part of the Squad“and once pointed out that they actually don’t spend as much time together as people think. (facade management) Actress Chloe Grace Moretz was invited to join Swift´s select Squad but turned it down. (issuing such an invitation shows a sense of entitlement) She later stated:
“They appropriate exclusivity. They’re cliques! […] I agree with having a good core group of friends, but the issue I have with squads is that it creates exclusivity […] I was never included in those things when I was a kid.“
Caught In A Lie (When Narcissists Collide)
On the 11th February 2016, Kanye West released his new track called “Famous”. Lyrics included the following:
“I feel like me and Taylor might still have sex / Why? I made that bitch famous.”
Kanye claimed he sought Taylor’s approval before the release, claiming he had an hour long conversation with Taylor, that she thought the line was funny and gave her blessings.
Taylor´s people denied this immediately and claimed that Kanye had only asked for her to promote the song and release it on her Twitter account. She declined and cautioned him about releasing a song with such a misogynistic message.
On the 15th of February 2016, Taylor Swift won album of the year at the Grammys. As they said her name, she reacted with a toned down version of the “surprise face” that people have often pointed out as coming across as insincere and strutted on the stage. In her speech, she then stated:
“As the first woman to win Album of the Year at the Grammys twice, (Grandiosity, Self-Absorbed) I want to say to all the young women out there—there are going to be people along the way who are going to try to undercut your success or take credit for your accomplishments or your fame, (Provocation) but if you just focus on the work and you don’t let those people sidetrack you, someday when you get where you’re going, you’ll look around and you will know that it was you and the people who love you who put you there. And that will be greatest feeling in the world.”
18th of July 2016, Kim Kardashian West uploaded three minutes of the phone conversation between Kanye and Taylor to Snapchat. It confirmed that Taylor had been made aware of the lyrics by Kanye and that Taylor approved of them, even throwing around words such as “respect” and “ friends” in regards to Kanye. She then promised to have people know that she was in on it at the Grammys if she was approached about it on the red carpet. (Future Faking) In the speech she had given on the 15th, she had done the complete opposite, further confirming that she had lied about everything she said to Kanye in that conversation, that she clearly saw this coming and wanted to use it to her advantage. Kim and Kanye´s fans then started to flood Taylor´s Social Media Accounts with snake emojis, a symbol she then blocked from her comments section, but later decided to make her own for her following Reputation album. She also wrote the song “This is why we can’t have nice things”, in which she depicted Kanye as a petulant child that ruined the good friendship they had for no particular reason.
This episode demonstrates Telling of Lies, Facade Management, Revision of History, Sense of Entitlement and Lack of Accountability and is a prime example of behaviour associated with a narcissist. It is somewhat ironic that the exposure of the lie occurred with an entanglement with two other narcissists, but they will have their turn under the Tudorscope.
Her announced album called “Lover” is setting a completely different tone for her new era, which seems to make people forget about Taylor´s past in that regard. In her debut single “ME!” she dropped hints and easter eggs to future reveals about the album, something she had been known to do and which was very well received by her fans. This time, there seem to be no hints to past “feuds”, “scandals” or any of the like, it’s all cotton candy coloured sweetness wrapped into the innocent self-loving message about how “you can’t spell awesome without “ME!” (Grandiosity)
Big Machine Label
On the 30th of June this year, it was made public that Scott Borchetta’s Big Machine Label Group had been sold to Scooter Braun’s Ithaca Holdings. Taylor was one of the first three artists to be signed to Big Machine Records when she was 15, but had decided to part ways with it for her new album “Lover”, leaving the rights of her past music in the hands of the label.
Scott Borchetta then proceeded to sell his label to Scooter Braun, who is known in the industry as “the man who made Justin Bieber”. Taylor hates Bieber and that means she hates Braun. (Objectification, Blurring of Boundaries Between Individuals)
Taylor turned to social media and alleged that Braun had been online-bullying her for years and that he was behind the previously described Kanye-Kim-Taylor debacle. (Revision of History, Telling of Lies) She claimed that Big Machine had offered her to gain back her rights if she re-signed with the label. Taylor also penned an open letter, claiming that Scott Braun had stripped her off her life´s work, and that this is beyond her worst nightmares. She wrote:
“ For years I asked, pleaded for a chance to own my work. Instead I was given an opportunity to sign back up to Big Machine Records and ‘earn’ one album back at a time, one for every new one I turned in. I walked away because I knew once I signed that contract, Scott Borchetta would sell the label, thereby selling me and my future. I had to make the excruciating choice to leave behind my past. Music I wrote on my bedroom floor and videos I dreamed up and paid for from the money I earned playing in bars, then clubs, then arenas, then stadiums.
She further claimed that she learnt about the news of Scooter Braun buying her music “with the world” and that she was not informed of this beforehand. Taylor complains about not having had the opportunity to buy the rights herself and says that “her musical legacy” now lies in the hands of the man who tried to strip her off of it for years. As an example, she states the Kim and Kanye incident:
“Like when Kim Kardashian orchestrated an illegally recorded snippet of a phone call to be leaked and then Scooter got his two clients together to bully me online about it. (See photo) Or when his client, Kanye West, organized a revenge porn music video which strips my body naked.”
The alleged “revenge porn music video” did not just feature her. Wax bodies of several other public personas, including Anna Wintour and Donald Trump had been made for the video.
“This is my worst case scenario. This is what happens when you sign a deal at fifteen to someone for whom the term ‘loyalty’ is clearly just a contractual concept. And when that man says ‘Music has value’, he means its value is beholden to men who had no part in creating it.”
Taylor has been criticized for the faux-feminist angle she took here, given that she is one of the most powerful and influental people on the planet:
“When I left my masters in Scott’s hands, I made peace with the fact that eventually he would sell them. Never in my worst nightmares did I imagine the buyer would be Scooter. Any time Scott Borchetta has heard the words ‘Scooter Braun’ escape my lips, it was when I was either crying or trying not to. He knew what he was doing; they both did. Controlling a woman who didn’t want to be associated with them. In perpetuity. That means forever.”
Scott Borchetta has since made it clear that Taylor´s father is a shareholder and was represented by a lawyer during the shareholder’s call in which the deal was settled. He himself had also texted Taylor Swift at 9 p.m. that evening, informing her about the deal. It is highly unlikely that Taylor simply “woke up to the news” with the rest of the world under these circumstances. Borchetta further showed the new contract he had proposed to Swift, stating:
“As you will read, 100% of all Taylor Swift assets were to be transferred to her immediately upon signing the new agreement,” Borchetta countered alongside a photocopy of the proposed contract. “We were working together on a new type of deal for our new streaming world that was not necessarily tied to ‘albums’ but more of a length of time. Taylor had every chance in the world to own not just her master recordings, but every video, photograph, everything associated to her career. She chose to leave. As to her comments about ‘being in tears or close to it,’ anytime my new partner Scooter Braun’s name was brought up, I certainly never experienced that. Was I aware of some prior issues between Taylor and Justin Bieber? Yes. But there were also times where Taylor knew that I was close to Scooter and that Scooter was a very good source of information for upcoming album releases, tours, etc, and I’d reach out to him for information on our behalf, Scooter was never anything but positive about Taylor. He called me directly about [the] Manchester [benefit concert] to see if Taylor would participate (she declined). He called me directly to see if Taylor wanted to participate in the Parkland March (she declined). Scooter has always been and will continue to be a supporter and honest custodian for Taylor and her music. ”
In the aftermath of Taylors accusations, Scooter Braun’s wife Yael has accused Swift of public airing of laundry, saying she had no right to complain about bullying because “You were given the opportunity to own your masters, you passed. […] The world watched you for years now, picking up and dropping friends like wilted flowers.”
This episode with regard to Big Machine Label shows The Telling of Lies, Manipulation, Facade Management, Victimhood, Blame Shifting, The Revision of History, Digging Up The Past and is a substantial example of many narcissistic indicators.
Like many narcissists, Swift operates a facade which is used to ensnare, triangulate and control. Various instances of this facade management have been explained above and further examples include:-
- The Hollywood Reporter has credited her as “the Best People Person since Bill Clinton”. Quite the comparison to Bill Clinton there who is a narcissist himself.
- Rolling Stone remarks upon her polite manner: “If this is Swift’s game face, it must be tattooed on because it never drops.” The magazine also takes note of her “ease with glad-handing”,
- Swift is known for her friendly interactions with her fans She has delivered holiday gifts to fans by mail and in person, dubbed “Swiftmas” (Grandiosity by bastardising the name of Christmas to encompass her own name) She considers it her “responsibility” to be conscious of her influence on young fans, and has said they are “the longest and best relationship I have ever had”. (Grandiosity, facade management, objectification and triangulation through labelling her fans as giving her the longest and best relationship whilst of course she has always been let down by those in romantic relationships. This also exhibits her black and white thinking.)
- Often described by the media as “America’s Sweetheart”, Swift insists she does not “live by all these rigid, weird rules that make me feel all fenced in. I just like the way that I feel like, and that makes me feel very free”. (Sense of entitlement and lack of accountability).
It would be remiss to exclude the various charitable activity that Swift has engaged in. This includes
- Swift’s philanthropic efforts have been recognised by the Do Something Awards and the Tennessee Disaster Services.
- She has also received The Big Help Award for her “dedication to helping others” and “inspiring others through action”, and the Ripple of Hope Award for her “dedication to advocacy at such a young age”
- In 2008, she donated $100,000 to the Red Cross to help the victims of the flood in Iowa that year.
- Swift has performed at charity relief events including Sydney’s Sound Relief concert
- She also recorded a song for the Hope for Haiti Now album.
- In response to the May 2010 Tennessee floods, Swift donated $500,000 during a telethon hosted by WSMV.
- In 2011, Swift used a dress rehearsal of her Speak Now tour as a benefit concert for victims of recent tornadoes in the United States, raising more than $750,000.
- In 2012, Swift supported Architecture for Humanity’s Restore the Shore MTV telethon in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
- In 2016, she made a $1,000,000 donation to Louisiana flood relief efforts and donated to the Dolly Parton Fire Fund.
- In 2017, Swift made a donation to the Houston Food Bank after Hurricane Harvey struck the city.
- Swift is a supporter of the arts and donated $75,000 to Nashville’s Hendersonville High School in 2010 to help refurbish the school auditorium.
- In 2012, she pledged $4 million to fund the building of a new education center at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville.
- In 2012 Swift partnered with textbook rental company Chegg to donate $60,000 to the music departments of six U.S. colleges.
- Swift also promotes children’s literacy. In 2009, she donated $250,000 to various schools around the country to improve education. Her other endeavors to promote literacy included donating 6,000 Scholastic books to the Reading Public Library in Pennsylvania 14,000 books to the Nashville Public Library in Tennessee 2,000 Scholastic books to the Reading Hospital Child Health Center’s early literacy program and 25,000 books to New York City schools in 2015.
- The same year, Swift donated all proceeds from the sale of the promotional single “Welcome to New York“, at the time $50,000, to the New York City Department of Education.
- In 2019, Swift sampled a song by the Toronto-based Regent Park School of Music in her album Lover, thus enabling the school to earn royalties from her album; she also made a personal donation.
In June 2019, Forbes estimated Swift’s net worth at $360 million.
There are many other acts of charity performed by her and nobody can deny that these are generous acts, however they must be viewed through the prism of what she is. These are not anonymous charitable acts (a la George Michael) but they are all done in the name of grandiosity, fuel gathering, facade management and triangulation. They are a symptom not of emotional empathy but of cognitive empathy. Swift´s cognitive function means that she has sufficient awareness (doubtless advised and assisted by a substantial team) to know that doing these things will bring her praise and admiration. (fuel) and form part of her facade, but they are not done out altruism. She can easily afford the donations and it is only done because she gets plenty from it. It is only fair to point out that she is hardly the first, nor will she be the last to donate and behave in such a way and clearly it is advantageous to her and others for her to do this, as opposed to not do this, but it is important to understand the context within which these acts are done. The variety of other indicators above demonstrate that this is not an individual who is governed by emotional empathy who performs these acts of charity out of the goodness of her heart, but does so because it suits the pursuit of The Prime Aims and thus it is only done because it benefits her. Most of the pop stars, actors and celebrities who do similar only do so out of cognitive empathy, so Swift is far from a sole offender in that regard.
All performers have narcissistic traits, but may not be narcissists. This is necessary by virtue of being driven, a performer and an artist. However, what many people do not realise is that a very large proportion of those who are performers and artists and who are famous and successful are narcissists, because their narcissism enables them to get to the top.
It is also the case that when someone achieves fame they will have their detractors and one must also be most careful to take that into account when dealing with differing narratives and accounts with regard to behaviour. However, the repeated nature of actions, the evidence that appears as a matter of record in print and recording and the patterns of behaviour bind together to provide the evidence which supports the appropriate outcome. A determination cannot be made on just one incident or a couple of comments, but repeated actions and comments which form a pattern of behaviour are determinative.
Accordingly, all of the necessary ingredients were there for the formation of a narcissist through the genetic predisposition to narcissism (mother) and the lack of control environment (gilded lifestyle and Grade B Syndrome “pushy mother”). The catalogue of behaviours and many, many other examples support that the sense of entitlement, lack of emotional empathy, lack of accountability for behaviours, haughtiness, grandiosity, manipulations and repeated aspects of the narcissistic dynamic demonstrate that Taylor Swift is A Very Popular Narcissist.
Watch the video to Blank Space.
Hiding in plain sight and laughing at all you victims.
(With thanks to DG for additional research)
261 thoughts on “A Very Popular Narcissist?”
The first time I saw the video and heard the song Blank Space, I thought She knows what she is, she’s done research ? Is it possible she does know HG ?
No, she does not know me.
Yes, she does know what she is, as I have explained.
Your absence of a comma meant that your sentence asked a question resulting in my first answer, but I suspect you meant the question resulting in my second answer.
I heard her song, Anti Hero, yesterday on the car radio. Listening to the lyrics, I could tell she knows she manipulates and plays with people, and she also knows she’s toxic to those she plays with. It makes sense with all the relationships she’s had over the years in the limelight. I do like some of her songs. I also think she’s talented, but I still don’t think of myself as a fan of hers. I’m sure she doesn’t care , if I do or don’t like her. I just enjoyed listening to the lyrics and understanding the narcissistic lyrics and meanings behind them. Thanks HG for giving me that awareness and insight. So many songs, as I told you recently, I can now point out the narcissistic meanings in the words, like the song, TAINTED LOVE, perfect example. For years I just thought of it as a love gone wrong song, now I know what went wrong, what he was dealing with and why he doesn’t prey that way. Thank you HG for helping me gain my understanding and awareness. It’s priceless, like your work and I’ll always be grateful to you for that. Xx
I wish this article were more popular. I’ve always known she was a narc from the get go.
“Taylor Swift beats Michael Jackson’s record of American Music Awards”. Saw this and thought I would post it here.
P.S. I miss HG..
Don’t we all.
Things are getting posted, so he’s around, and our comments to them are posted, so he’s vetting them, but his direct participation in conversation is sorely missed.
As he undoubtedly intended.
I have explained elsewhere I have been occupied with personal and professional matters and not been in a position to comment. I could have halted moderation in its entirety but chose to allow as many comments through as I possibly could.
I think this is a sociopath. This is a song about objectification and hoovering.
She is a midrange narc, right? Always playing victim. What do others think?
I feel Malcom X is a super empath. I have been following his words a lot. So inspiring.
TS is self aware middle greater
but what about the whole victim she plays?
Her songs do sing about being a narc (like blank space.)
What is the big difference between greater and midranger is it the awarness? or playing victim?
I LOVE TAYLOR SWIFT btw. I was reading quotes from her today. Soooooo motivating!!! I love her attitude. Narc or not. Shake it off!
They all use the victim card
As I understand it;.
There are victim cadre lessers and lower mid rangers
And the middle mid Rangers are Poor Me’s but more subtle and charming about it.
TS is self aware – knows what she is. I love her even more now that I know lol
fantastic! I loved this! Thank you! I need to be more like taylor swift and re-write history. Good things to take from narcs some times. I love the song shake it off. Let’s get back to work! Fuck dem haters. Let’s triangulate them 🙂
Great article HG! Finally catching up with everything. Did I read in one of the comments on your blog that TS is a greater?
What is Chloe Grace Moretz?
Another reason I love this site.
HG always gives little reminders of what Ns are truly like. If you use it wisely, it’s actually a very helpful part of your recovery. It helps you learn not to get sucked in or take it personally.
Hating you though!
i think TS is a midranger. She is always the victim.
What do you think?
I feel malcom x is a super empath. thoughts?
I’ve never listened to TS or followed her in any way so I can only rely on the little I have seen. I would have guessed at a mid too but I’m certain I read a comment where HG reported she was a greater, if that’s the case she must be a middle greater.
Chloe, never heard of before but based on her response in HGs I wondered what she was. She reacted exactly how I would have done. There’s no way I would have joined her clan no matter what the outcome would have been for me. But I also think this could be quite a narcissistic response too so I wondered whether she was N or possibly SE. From photos she does look like she has empathy but that’s just a photo. I don’t know anything else about her.
All that said, I have learned from reading HGs site that it can be advantageous in some circumstances to adapt my approach and so I have rather successfully. But that fiery part of me still burns deep inside!
Malcom X I really haven’t studied him enough to provide a response. I’d be interested to find out though.
Taylor Swift is a Middle Greater Elite.
Hg…So Taylor Swift’s delightful mom just released footage of poor Tay Tay after laser surgery and all drugged up, looking less than camera ready and acting goofy. She gave the video to Jimmy Fallon who surprised Taylor with it on the show.
I’m assuming Taylor’s mother is a narc, and this was a malign move on her part to ridicule and embarrass her daughter. This comes on the heels of Taylor announcing her mother’s cancer returning.
I’m wondering if announcing the return of cancer may have wounded her mothers sense of omnipotence and this was her revenge?
Hg pls do watch the video and confirm Taylor can barely keep a smile on her face ? Totally blindsided
Here’s a link
Why friends of the coterie never say anything too???Knowing their friends are just flying monkeys of the narcissist, in case they do know???They are no even part of the narcissists’ fuel matrix or friends….Only to the coterie!.Why????
Read about The Coterie and also the book Smeared.
smeared is my fav book!
I am going through a smear campaign. I think the worse is experiencing the pain of having turncoats (the bastards who were your friend and joined the narc.) But great strategy HG: focus on people who root for u.
I notice that you comment sections get wiped after a while. First time I saw this was on “The Narcissist and Film” and now I see it here. Is there a particular reason for this?
I do not understand what you are referring to. Nothing gets wiped from the comment section unless someone requests the removal of a post for a valid reason.
Hi Desiree, Do you see on your screen the small “older comments”? Click that. If you don’t see it, click near the center below all current comments and the invisible link should be in that space
Having read this I came to the conclusion that I may be a narcissist too, as after my discard I wrote a book about my narc by attacking and humiliating him without pointing his real name, but everyone knows who I’m talking about. Is it possible that I’m a narcissist HG?
Look to this Stella https://narcsite.com/empath-detector/
Based on your comments so far, you have a mix of narcissistic and empathic traits.
Thank you! 😏
You are welcome.
I do wonder sometimes HG if you are hiding in plain sight 🙂
Yes, I’m Taylor Swift.
Not exactly what I meant!
And that video was chilling to watch.
I got the good kind of shivers from it.
I love that she’s self aware laughing at her victims and future targets
I love it
Self aware ppl, even if they’re “evil” are the cats ass
Ha! Well at least not that one guy, Katy Perry’s ex!
I once had a few fleeting thoughts, partly due to a lot of CPTSD, being stalked, and the almost eery synchronicities throughout my life, that HG was probably the ex I had just escaped from. I was on high alert. It would have been just my luck lol 😂
I am not your ex.
I know lol.
I can imagine you witness us arrive here in all states of crazy and hopefully watch most of us improve. I remember one of the questions on the Empath Detector was if I believed that everyone has a purpose for being here (on the planet) or something to that effect. I answered “NO.” He is someone who does not.
Many, many people improve by taking up the tools I furnish for them.
If you could furnish a pick ax after graduation that would be great too lol!
Neil Patrick Harris- it would be nice if he was an empath, but is he one of yours?
He certainly played a narcissist on How I Met Your Mother, but he’s so omnipresent I have to wonder is he one in real life?
A nice one?
Exactly the response I was expecting from you.
I’m not here to do a yes or no on every single famous person mentioned to me.
Sorry to trouble you. I’ll respectfully refrain
1. You have no need to apologise.
2. I did not answer a question. I am under no obligation to do so. It is unnecessary to respond with a comment such as “you responded in the way I expected you to.” (or words to that effect). If you did, why then did you ask a question if you expected me not to answer. Truth be told, you expected me to answer and when you did not get an answer, you responded with a jibe.
3. I politely explain to you that I am not going to answer yes or no to everybody who asks me “Is x an empath” or “Is y a narcissist” because
a. I am under no obligation to do so
b. I may not know who is being referred to
c. I may not have placed them under The Tudorscope
I answer hundreds of questions each day, free of charge.
To answer in the way you did is unfortunate and unnecessary. You are always welcome to ask questions, but not everyone will be answered and some may not get a response at all. If you want a guaranteed answer that is why the consultations are made available.
I asked to see. Life is too short for anything negative.
I’m sure that one day I will request a consultation. Certainly not over NPH having NPD. I do appreciate all the answers you have ever given me.
No, I would not regard a consultation with regard to NPH as necessary, but necessary for many other reasons and I look forward to consulting with you. You are welcome.
Since I’m going to start dating, I will be requesting the dating consultation
Jolly good. I look forward to assisting you.
It’s hard to tell if NPH is narcissistic or a narcissist. However, in How I Met Your Mother, he plays a Somatic Narcissist. If it were to give a guess, I think NPH leans more on the Elite to Cerebral side in real life. Just my guess.
Thank you Anm, interesting analysis of seeing him as cerebral, I hadn’t thought of that.
That is, if he is a Narcissist. I couldn’t tell you for sure. HG covers this in Sitting Target. NPH is very active and well known within various Charity Organizations, and is usually seen at award ceremonies and galas. He plays a beer drinking womanizer on How I Met Your Mother, but he is gay in real life, and prefers Broadway over Hollywood.