Mental Health and Medical Professionals

Name (date added or updated)
Jeffrey Flier (2/26/17)
Ford Fox (12/1017)
Howard Gardner (2/26/17)
Matthew Goldenberg (2/26/17)
John M. Grohol (2/26/17)
Judith Herman, Nanette Gartrell, and Dee Mosbacher (2/26/17)
Dan P. McAdams (2/26/17)
Gail Saltz (2/26/17)
George Simon (2/26/17)


Jeffrey Flier, MD (Harvard University Distinguished Service Professor and Higginson Professor of Physiology and Medicine, Harvard Medical School)
Narcissistic personality disorder. “Narcissistic personality disorder. Trump doesn’t just have it, he defines it.” (7/30/16, Twitter) link


Ford Fox, MD (medical journalist and brain injury specialist at the Shepard Center)
Concern for a neurocognitive disease process. “Every day of my working life, I evaluate people with brain injuries. It falls to me to make decisions about what is normal and what is not, what can improve and what will not, whether or not my patients can work….In turning my attention to the president, I see worrisome symptoms that fall into three main categories: problems with language and executive function; problems with social cognition and behavior; and problems with memory, attention, and concentration. None of these are symptoms of being a bad or mean person. Nor do they require spelunking into the depths of his psyche to understand. Instead, they raise concern for a neurocognitive disease process in the same sense that wheezing raises the alarm for asthma.”
Mild cognitive impairment preceding frontotemporal dementia…as well as more typical Alzheimer’s dementia… “The symptoms I’ve observed raise the concern for mild cognitive impairment preceding frontotemporal dementia, which is particularly heavy on the behavioral symptoms like those the president displays, as well as more typical Alzheimer’s dementia, or dementia with Lewy bodies.” (12/7/17, “I’m a brain specialist. I think Trump should be tested for a degenerative brain disease”) link


Howard Gardner, PhD (John H. and Elisabeth A. Hobbs Professor of Cognition and Education, Harvard Graduate School of Education)
Remarkably narcissistic. “[Donald Trump is] remarkably narcissistic.” (11/11/15, quoted in “Is Donald Trump Actually a Narcissist? Therapists Weigh In”) link


Matthew Goldenberg, MD (assistant professor of psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine)
Something seriously wrong… “Like many Americans, I have been personally appalled by much of Trump’s indecorous behavior as a candidate. He comes across as cantankerous, vain, impulsive, demeaning and ill-informed. I understand why people have raised questions about his mental health…You don’t have to be a psychiatrist to know that there’s something seriously wrong with the candidate. The lessons I learned in preschool, kindergarten and elementary school — not in medical school, residency and years of psychiatric practice — are what tell me that Trump is unfit for the job.” (8/23/16, “A professional opinion: You don’t need a psychiatrist to know there’s something wrong with Donald Trump”) link


John M. Grohol, Psy.D. (founder Psychcentral.com)
Narcissistic Personality Disorder. “Therapists, researchers, psychologists, and experts in mental health appear pretty consistent in their belief that Trump suffers from narcissistic traits consistent with Narcissistic Personality Disorder.” (8/31/16, “The Psychology of Donald Trump and How He Speaks”) link


Judith Herman, M.D. (Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School)
Nanette Gartrell, M.D. (Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, University of California, San Francisco, 1988-2011)
Dee Mosbacher, M.D., Ph.D. (Assistant Clinical Professor, University of California, San Francisco, 2005-2013)
Grave concern regarding the mental stability… “We are writing to express our grave concern regarding the mental stability of our President-Elect. Professional standards do not permit us to venture a diagnosis for a public figure whom we have not evaluated personally. Nevertheless, his widely reported symptoms of mental instability — including grandiosity, impulsivity, hypersensitivity to slights or criticism, and an apparent inability to distinguish between fantasy and reality — lead us to question his fitness for the immense responsibilities of the office. We strongly recommend that, in preparation for assuming these responsibilities, he receive a full medical and neuropsychiatric evaluation by an impartial team of investigators.” (letter written 11/29/16, published in Huffington Post) link


Dan P. McAdams, PhD (professor of psychology and the director of the Foley Center for the Study of Lives at Northwestern University)
Narcissistic motivations… “Who, really, is Donald Trump? What’s behind the actor’s mask? I can discern little more than narcissistic motivations and a complementary personal narrative about winning at any cost. It is as if Trump has invested so much of himself in developing and refining his socially dominant role that he has nothing left over to create a meaningful story for his life, or for the nation. It is always Donald Trump playing Donald Trump, fighting to win, but never knowing why.” (June 2016, “The Mind of Donald Trump”) link


Gail Saltz, MD (Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the New York Presbyterian Hospital Weill-Cornell School of medicine and a psychoanalyst with the New York Psychoanalytic Institute)
Makes you think about intense narcissism. “Let me first say, I cannot diagnose Donald Trump. I don’t know Donald Trump. But I would say that someone who spends time creating a very grandiose view of themselves, you know… ‘I’m best in this.’ ‘I’m sexually the best.’ ‘All the women want me’ … and will break the rules, lie, do something unethical for the purpose of that, it certainly makes you think about intense narcissism.” (5/14/16, CNN) link


George Simon, PhD (clinical psychologist)
Classic [narcissistic]… “He’s so classic [narcissistic] that I’m archiving video clips of him to use in workshops because there’s no better example of his characteristics… Otherwise, I would have had to hire actors and write vignettes. He’s like a dream come true.” (11/11/15, quoted in “Is Donald Trump Actually a Narcissist? Therapists Weigh In”) link