We surveyed 1,000 people who have had a romantic relationship with a narcissist to answer a common question inside our community, “Do narcissists cheat?”

Yes, narcissists cheat. In fact, 80% of the survey participants reported that the narcissist in their past relationship cheated at some point.

In this article, I will guide you through the details of our survey to help you understand a narcissist’s tendency to cheat.


Association Between Narcissism and Cheating

Narcissism is a personality trait characterized by a grandiose sense of self-importance, a lack of empathy for others, and a need for excessive admiration. 

These traits can make narcissists more prone to cheating, as they may:

1.) Seek out admiration and validation from multiple sources.

2.) Believe they have a right to cheat (sense of entitlement).

3.) Lack the empathy needed to understand the impact of their actions on others.

Purpose of the Survey

The purpose of this survey was to gather data on the incidence and characteristics of cheating in romantic relationships with narcissists. 

Understanding the association between narcissism and cheating can help individuals recognize and deal with infidelity in relationships with narcissists.

A woman saying that she doesn't think the narcissist in her life would cheat.

Additionally, this data can be valuable for mental health professionals and others who work with individuals affected by narcissistic manipulation.


The survey was conducted online and involved 1,000 participants who self-identified as having been in a romantic relationship with a narcissist. 

We ensured the participants were of a diverse group, representing various ages, genders, and relationship statuses. 

The survey consisted of multiple-choice questions, as well as some open-ended questions to capture more nuanced experiences. 

The questions were designed to gather data on:

1.) The incidence of cheating.

2.) The frequency of cheating

3.) The awareness of the narcissist about the participant’s knowledge of the cheating.

4.) The reaction of the narcissist when confronted about the cheating.

Key Findings

Incidence of Cheating

A significant majority of the participants (80%) reported that the narcissist in their past relationship cheated on them at some point. This indicates a strong association between narcissism and cheating in romantic relationships.

Frequency of Cheating

Among the participants who reported that the narcissist cheated on them:

  • 30% reported that the narcissist cheated once.
  • 40% reported that the narcissist cheated with the same person multiple times.
  • 30% reported that the narcissist cheated multiple times with different people.

This suggests that narcissists are not only more likely to cheat, but they are also more likely to engage in repeated acts of infidelity with multiple partners.

Awareness of the Narcissist

60% of the participants who reported being cheated on were aware of the infidelity when it occurred, while 40% found out about it later. 

A man saying he knew his wife was cheating on him the whole time.

Additionally, among those who were aware of the cheating, 50% confronted the narcissist about it.

This indicates that narcissists are often aware that their partner knows about their cheating, but they may not always be confronted about it.

Reaction of the Narcissist

Among the participants who confronted the narcissist about the cheating:

  • 40% reported the narcissist denied the cheating.
  • 30% reported the narcissist admitted to the cheating but did not show remorse.
  • 25% reported the narcissist blamed them for the cheating.
  • 5% reported the narcissist admitted to the cheating and showed remorse.

This suggests that narcissists often deny their infidelity or fail to show remorse for their actions and, in some cases, may even blame their partner for their cheating.

Suggested Reading: How Do Narcissists Act When They Are Caught Cheating?


The findings of this survey confirm a strong association between narcissism and cheating in romantic relationships. 

A significant majority of participants reported being cheated on by a narcissistic partner, with many reporting multiple instances of infidelity with different partners. 

Additionally, many narcissists were aware that their partner knew about their cheating but were often not confronted about it.

When confronted, narcissists often denied the infidelity, showed no remorse, or even blamed their partner.

A narcissist blaming their partner for their own cheating.

These findings underscore the importance of recognizing the association between narcissism and cheating. 

Individuals in relationships with narcissists should be aware of this risk and take appropriate measures to protect themselves emotionally. 


While this survey provides valuable insights into the association between narcissism and cheating, there are several limitations that we want to mention.

First, the survey relied on self-reported data, which is subject to recall bias and may not always accurately reflect the participants’ experiences. 

Additionally, the survey sample may not fully represent the broader population, as it was conducted online and only included individuals who self-identified as having been in a romantic relationship with a narcissist. 

Lastly, the survey did not capture detailed demographic information of the participants, which may limit the generalizability of the findings to different demographic groups.

Despite these limitations, this survey provides a valuable starting point for understanding the association between narcissism and cheating in romantic relationships. 

Further research is needed to confirm and expand upon these findings and to explore the experiences of different demographic groups.

About the Author

Hey, I’m Elijah.

I experienced narcissistic abuse for three years. 

I create these articles to help you understand and validate your experiences.

Thank you for reading, and remember, healing is possible even when it feels impossible.

If you’re ready to heal, visit The Institute of Healing from Narcissistic Abuse to get started.



  1. Good read narcs are a lose lose situation.
    So in fact where in another occasion say listen I know you have someone else. So it’s very important that leave now. Otherwise – if you don’t stand on the same boundaries you came into the relationship or situationship with. No cheating you feel entitled as soon as I know you go. That’s it. The end. Otherwise if you don’t the narc is going to play more mind games to throw you off balance emotionally assuming that it hurts me that he has someone else. When it doesn’t. Will assume there is something to talk about the narcs behavior no there isn’t no excuses no reasons no nothing. To talk about. I don’t feel what you assume. I’m chilling! I’m educated fun and so on with a good self esteem. Healthy mind healthy body moving on.

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