It is difficult to deal with a narcissist when you are a grown, independent, fully functioning adult. The children of narcissists have an especially difficult burden, for they lack the knowledge, power, and resources to deal with their narcissistic parents without becoming their victims. Whether cast into the role of Scapegoat or Golden Child, the Narcissist's Child never truly receives that to which all children are entitled: a parent's unconditional love. Start by reading the 46 memories--it all began there.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Narcissistic parents

Not all child abusers are narcissists, but all narcissistic parents abuse their children. They cannot not abuse them, for it is the nature of narcissists to see others, including their own children, as sources of ego gratification—otherwise known as “narcissistic supply”—regardless of the consequence to those suppliers.

Narcissists are supremely entitled individuals who lack conscience or remorse for the pain they inflict on others. They are the people who believe that if you get your feelings hurt as a result of something they did or said, that is your fault for either being “overly sensitive” or even for “choosing to feel hurt”—because they truly believe that you could have chosen not to feel hurt by their insensitivity.

But there is a class of narcissist, the “malignant narcissist,” who takes things a step further. These people actively seek to hurt others in countless ways, both large and small, for the sheer pleasure of “winning.” To the malignant narcissist, in any contest of will, in order for him/her to “win,” you must lose, and you must suffer in the bargain. Narcissists are the ultimate control freaks and the malignant narcissist must not only control but inflict punishment as well. Having a malignant narcissist for a parent is a terrifying thing…

My mother was a malignant narcissist. But in the Fifties, the time of my childhood, there was no word to describe personality disorders like narcissism. Society surreptitiously swept ugly things under the rug unless a situation was so bad it was impossible to look away. The mythology of motherhood reigned supreme—all mothers loved their children and children who presented with bruises and welts and other signs of abuse were deemed “troublemakers” for having provoked their mothers to such extremes in the name of discipline. Somehow, nobody seemed to pick up on the cognitive dissonance between the “innocence” of childhood and the ability of such an innocent to provoke physical violence in the person who supposedly loved the child more than anyone in the world: her mother.

Growing up under the rule of a narcissistic parent, especially a malignant narcissist, is a terrifying, emotionally agonizing, spiritually impoverishing experience. Lisette, of the blog House of Mirrors, describes what it is like to be in a relationship with a narcissist:
.    • Being rejected and denied value as a person
.    • Being degraded and having your self-worth and dignity as a person degraded
.    • Being exploited and used for the narcissist’s profit or advantage
.    • Being terrorized by intimidation, control, coercion, and stalking
.    • Being denied care, affection, and attention of any kind
.    • Being dismissed, humiliated, manipulated, and belittled
.    • Being violated by pathological envy, greed, and entitlement
.    • Being plundered, pillaged and systematically destroyed
Narcissistic abuse tears at a person’s self-worth and manifests in social withdrawal, anxiety, fearfulness, depression, self-blame and self-destructive behaviour. It results in feelings of guilt, shame, inadequacy and powerlessness."

Narcissists come in both genders, every shape, size, colour, ethnicity and belief system. They are often charming and engaging when first met, and it is not until the narcissist has his or her claws deep into you that you begin to realize that there is something “not right” about the person. That usually begins to happen when you begin to deny the narcissist something that s/he believes s/he is entitled to have. It doesn’t have to be something big—it can be something as small as five minutes of your attention at a time you need to focus on something else—the narcissist is entitled and if you deny him or her, the narcissist will be miffed…and somewhere down the road, you will get punished.

Narcissists have long, long memories. They never forget a slight, real or imagined. And they feel entitled to redress that slight, over and over and over again. There is nothing rational about their perception of being slighted, either: a narcissistic mother may feel that the necessary tasks of motherhood, like paying attention to the needs of her children, are excessive demands on the part of the child, demands for which the narcissistic mother will ultimately exact revenge.

For the narcissist, it is “all about me!” When my first child was born and I was lying in a hospital bed after having a Caesarian, my mother, father, and his second wife came to visit. My stepmother commented on how pretty my new baby girl was, my father inquired as to how I was feeling, and my mother tried to engage my father, from whom she had been divorced for eight years, in reminiscences of her Caesarian when I was born, and how much worse hers had been than mine (I was able to laugh, her stitches hurt too much to laugh, etc.). My surgery, my new baby (their first grandchild) and all my mother could talk about was herself!

One of the favourite tools of the narcissist is called “gas lighting,” after the 1944 movie, Gaslight, starring Ingrid Bergman and Charles Boyer. According to Wikipedia, “Gaslighting is a form of psychological abuse in which false information is presented with the intent of making a victim doubt his or her own memory and perception. It may simply be the denial by an abuser that previous abusive incidents ever occurred, or it could be the staging of bizarre events by the abuser with the intention of disorienting the victim.” Narcissistic parents use this tool to rewrite history, to make themselves look blameless, to even deny some events ever occurred. My NM abandoned me for adoption when I was 2, keeping my baby brother. Her own parents told me this and I lived with them for nearly two years until they were able to get my mother to take me back. When queried about this, however, my NM denied it ever happened. My father and my other grandparents, one aunt (on my father’s side) and an uncle on my mother’s side all support my grandparents’ tale, yet NM maintained the fiction that it never happened for the rest of her life. Today, 14 years after NM’s death, at least one of her “flying monkeys” keeps the lie alive, accusing me of lying about my abandonment! (Actually, she claims all 46 of the stories below are lies, even though she was not witness to any of the events and wasn’t even born when most of them occurred! Such is the power of a narcissist to hoover people to their sides and completely suck out their brains!)

I will explore the narcissist and his/her tricks in succeeding posts, and in particular I will focus on the Malignant Narcissist and the legacy of dysfunction and damage they leave behind. But first—46 stories from real life, a life shaped and distorted by a malignant narcissist mother…

19 comments:

  1. Thank you for having this blog. I survived my narcissistic parents. All your descriptions about how is like to be with them is right on reality.
    I grew up in Mexico (yes, narcissism happens in all cultures), to a high-middle class family. My mother is an avid manipulator, self-consumed and racist Spanish woman who fixates in her being of fair skin. I believe she even married my father because he is a brunette, and she used that to criticize him and constantly feel good (in her own twisted mind). Needless to say, she either belittled or ignored my success and happiness, was never there for me on special occasions since I have memory. My father, always under her influence and carelessly distracted. Mother abruptly left home when I was 13, to pursue her career. I followed her to the city and I had problems copying with the change that became so depressed, beside the fact that during childhood I developed low-self esteem. At age 16 intended to commit suicide.
    A Narcissistic Mother Never Makes Mistakes, she would rather intern you in a psychiatric hospital because something must be wrong with you. And I was lucky enough that doctor (who never treated my parents or interrogated them) ok'd that I stay at home. Only if I was heavily medicated with Prozac and a cocktail of sleeping pills.
    My parents saw me suffering, dropping school, begged them not to have more pills, and still never a word of I'm sorry, or what did we do wrong. And of course they say they love me (only when confronted).
    I ended up leaving my house. I miraculously grew up to be a happy woman (even though sometimes, the ghost of my mother still visit me, telling me how bad I look today, how ugly I am, how somebody has a house better than mine, etc)I married an American, is the love of my life (20yrs older than me) but is my love 4 ever. Every day I'm father from the memories of my childhood, and keep discovering new talents in me. Knitting and crocheting, baking and having my dogs have been most helpful.

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    1. Indeed, narcissism occurs in all cultures and economic strata--in fact there are cultures in which male narcissism structures and rules the culture.

      I am sorry that you had to endure the kinds of things you wrote about. Your father is not an uncommon satellite revolving around the sun of the narcissist mother--in fact, such fathers are so common, they have even been given a name: the Enabling Father or EF. I don't understand why they put up with women like that--perhaps they are narcissists as well or they are those weak people who need strong ones to control and mould their lives. I really don't know.

      I encourage you to continue searching the web for information regarding your mother (watch out or the sites on the BEWARE tabs above, though) including checking the sites on the recommended lists. There is life--a good life--after narcissistic parents for those who are vigilant about keeping narcissists out of their lives and who are determined not to allow a poor upbringing control the rest of their lives. I found I had to seek out therapy to achieve that, but in the end, I prevailed just as you seem to have.

      Please feel free to join the site and I wish you the very best life possible.

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  2. Dear Violet
    I have just discovered this site today, after finally acknowledging to myself that my sister, and my mother, are both strong narcissists, and have both spent the majority of my life causing me immeasurable pain and suffering. I have been aware that my mother has this disorder for several years now, and the death of my father in January 2010 has accelerated my understanding. I have been in denial about my sister and her NPD, but she is expecting a baby (her first, at the age of 43), and I have been forced to confront the fact that she will probably not allow me to be part of the baby's life. I feel better for acknowledging that this situation is way beyond my control.

    I was wondering if I would be able to shed some light on the Enabling Father role. My father did love me, I know, and to a certain extent tried to protect me from my mother, although of course he was far from successful in this, as he was dominated by my mother. Interestingly I had no idea of this as a child and young person, as my mother was a genius at giving the impression of a helpless feminine victim of my father's anger.

    My father would not talk about his family, and he left them at the age of 16, never to return. He met and married my mother when he was 35. From what I can gather, my father's family was cruel and abusive, and his mother may well have been a narcissist herself. I am quite sure that my father's choice of wife was heavily influenced by his own isolated and abusive childhood, which unfortunately he was never able to overcome.

    Thank you for your site. I cannot tell you how it feels not to be alone with this awful experience.

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    1. Thank you for writing. I am sorry that you, too, have been saddled with an NM--please be aware that your situation with your sister is not at all uncommon: of the many people I have known with NMs, a large proportion of them have narcissistic siblings...and enabling fathers.

      I feel rather bad for enabling fathers because if they aren't co-opted by the NM, they must suffer a great deal in their impotence. My own father was basically held hostage by my NM because she held the trump card: his kids. In my father's case, he tried to protect me from my mother, but he wasn't home as much as she was and I was threatened with additional violence if I told him what she was doing.

      Your father appears to have gone out of the frying pan and into the fire. From an abusive family into an abusive marriage...and yes, his choice of wife was likely heavily influenced by his upbringing. I dated and married more than one narcissist--malignant narcissist--before I wised up went into therapy. It is not an uncommon occurrence.

      There is a lot of good information on the web. You might with to Google Joanna Ashmun and Kathy Krajco--they have both written extensively and knowledgably about narcissism. Best of luck in dealing with your family...and please feel free to join the blog and keep in touch.

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  3. I don't know how to survive my narcissist parents. I'm 29 and have only just realised how badly I was actually treated as a child. I've just realised they were narcissitcs. I'm not. Instead, I am codependent. I feel like my life is over & have felt like it has been over my whole life. I'm almost waiting to die because my self worth is pretty much non existent. I'm seeing a psychologist but only every 2-3 weeks and how am I expected to make any sort of recovery like this? I hate my parents.

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    1. I'm 39 and I'm the same way. I've turned out highly codependent and with incredibly low self-esteem. I see a psychologist about once a month because that's all I can afford. I appreciated your sharing this. It helped me to see there are other people out here who have been scarred the same. I hope things get better for you and I hope the same for myself.

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    2. Hi
      I'm 38, and your line: "I feel like my life is over & have felt like it has been over my whole life" pretty much sums it up. I'm with you. Out of place, shouldn't have been born, doesn't belong.... sound familiar? I have an Narcissistic father and a mother who orbits him and she's also Bi-polar, and I do believe now she is also Narcissistic just because she's been orbiting him for so long... If my mother try's to hug me - I get that "yucky" feeling. Even though most of the crap has come from him. I'm not sure myself if I'm codependent, but I can't seem to leave my mom alone. I don't care if I talk to my father.

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  4. You have already taken two very important steps: you have awareness and you have a therapist. You are on your way.

    But it has taken you 29 years to get to the place you are today--it is not going to turn around overnight. Just as it took time for the problems to develop to the point that you sought relief, it takes time for them to be resolved. It cannot happen overnight, so rather than be impatient for yourself to be "fixed," perhaps you can try to view therapy as an addition to your life, at least for the foreseeable future.

    I agree that every 2-3 weeks isn't very much. When I first started therapy, I went 2-3 times per week. I strongly suggest that you speak to your therapist about exercises you can do, books you can read, activities you can do to fill the time between appointments, activities oriented towards self awareness and emotional health and improved self-esteem.

    One of the most powerful tools I was introduced to was journalling...writing. You write it all down--your frustration, your feelings, the behavours of others and how it affects you, incidents from your earlier life that enrage or hurt or confuse or anger you. You write them down in the smallest detail and even detail your feelings about their treatment of you. On this blog, the first 46 entries are MY journal, my purge of experiences and emotions, and form the basis of this blog.

    To hate anyone is to be emotionally connected to them. It is good that you recognize your feelings and even better that you hate them (as opposed to still loving them because that gives them your strings to pull). But when we hate someone, we are still giving them space in our heads and our hearts to control our feelings. You will know the battle is won when you no longer feel any emotional connection to them, including hatred.

    Please google "abusive mother" and "abusive parents" and a bunch of other similar search criteria--you will find a wealth of resources there. Just beware of the two sites noted on the tabs at the top of the main page--if you visit them, please stay alert and on guard.

    Please feel free to join this blog and don't be shy about commenting. I always enjoy hearing from readers!

    Hugs to you and best of luck

    Violet

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  5. My mother is definitely a narcissist and I definitely considered her behavior to be abusive when I was a child. It's been hard to interact with her in my adult life as well, here's another blog on this topic that I found helpful, hopefully you will too.....http://www.psychalive.org/2013/03/the-problem-with-narcissistic-parents/

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  6. I was in my 50's before I realized what had happened my entire life. My mother was a malignant narcissist. My father was her second in command flying monkey, with their son, the GC, being number one.

    My father was the most confusing. When we were alone, he would be sweet and show some form of concern for me. However, if influenced by his wife or son, he would be the physical abuser. We all know we did nothing to deserve any form of physical punishment - especially when the supposed crime was groundless or the doing of another in this dysfunctional family. NM and GC just had to be sure they kept my father well-tuned to go into any action they demanded without thinking for himself or of me.

    I could write how I was blamed and beaten for my mother having a miscarriage when I was 3 years old; how I was held by GC with a knife at my throat, in the presence of my mother when I was 12 (nothing happened to him, it was as if it didn't happen); How GC raped me at 14 ( again, it didn't happen and I was dubbed "a pathological liar" on the outside, and "you deserved it" on the inside); how mother and son broke bones in my face ( never taken to a doctor - he might ask how it happened); how, when I was sick, was ignored and blamed for ruining "mothers" day; how EF kicked me down a flight of stairs ( mother was angry I was going out on a date), how I'd be locked in a basement for the day ( too many times without knowing why) and hundreds more.

    The point I want to make is : After 50 years of this treatment, EF called me to say, " I know what "they" were doing to you. I knew it for a long, long, time. But, I couldn't do anything about it because I had to watch out for myself. You understand, right?"

    So, here was my EF, not only admitting, in secret, he knew I was being abused, but he was excusing himself of any wrongdoing himself because he was a coward, knowingly wouldn't protect me by choice, because they may turn on him and do the same - but that was okay for his little girl to take. I'm supposed to "understand" and accept it.

    I went full No Contact after that. The mistake I made was telling those "close" to me why. The flying monkeys went into full smear campaign mode ( not that it wasn't happening before, I later found out) and I am now completely shunned by family and those who I thought were friends. They even got to my only child, who is grown and lives 200 miles away at school.

    Having a malignant narcissist, as a "mother", is the same as an innocent child being born to Satan. These women, with the help of her flying monkeys, are hellbent on destroying your spirit, soul, and your very life - for fun. They never stop.

    If you feel you have to go No Contact, do it early in your life before you accumulate your own family, friends and employment without them having any knowledge or contact of any kind. What they don't know, they can't take away, or destroy - like they did to mine.

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    1. It is never too late to go NC. Many people do not figure out until later in life that their families are hopelessly narcissistic and they cannot even entertain the thought of NC until the realisation sets in.

      Your FOO may have destroyed many important relationships in your past---but that is in your past. You still have your present and your future and if you remain bitter and stuck in your well-deserved resentment and anger, they will have control over your present and future, too.

      Every day is precious...none of us can know which one will be our last, so it is doubly important to move forward and take each day without the influence of a toxic NM or NFOO as a triumph. You don't need them and the very best revenge is living well and loving your life as you do so.

      Hugs to you,

      Violet

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  7. Can someone help me with specific targeted advice on how I can respond to my younger sibling, who was appointed by my NM as the GC.....since my dad died , she has really dug herself into sibling GC who oversees and intervenes in almost all communication she has with me....it is taking a real toll on my mental and even physical health....
    WHen the GC sibling is home with her, he plays policeman over my phone calls with my NM....he seems to feel a need to rush to her "rescue" if she has just the most basic disagreement with me (or anyone), if the person at the store "upsets' her, then GC rushes in to lambast store employee
    Also, when GC is not around, my NM will "report" to GC anything I say that she disagreed with or was "hurt" by, and then GC promptly without question believes every word she says without even considering perhaps it may not have happened the way she said

    Im sick and tired of feeling like less important or valuable than GC....can some here advise me on how to react when GC plays "policeman" this way?

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    1. My guess is that your father was your mother's primary source of Nsupply (See the glossary for definitions: http://narcissistschild.blogspot.com/p/npd-glossary.html ) and when he died and the Nsupply stopped, she needed a new source and she picked your brother. My guess as to why she picked him instead of you is this: her original source was male; she didn't believe you would react the way she wanted when she tried to demonize your brother; she wants to be rescued and championed by her knight in shining armor and in her mind, you don't fit the criteria. She may even think you are smart enough to see through her ploys and refuse to play.

      Whatever her reasons, she chose her son as her next source of Nsupply but since he doesn't live with her day to day (I assume) and she also doesn't have the kind of symbiotic relationship she had with your father, she needs to set up situations in which she is being victimized and your brother can rescue her...setting the stage for the future, as it were.

      You need to go to the entry in this blog on Triangulation ( http://narcissistschild.blogspot.com/2012/04/triangulationthe-narcissists-secret.html ) because this is exactly what your NM is doing. And you need to go back to the glossary and read the entry on "Flying Monkeys" because that is what she has turned your brother into.

      What can you do about it? Not much. A primary tenet of therapy is "you cannot change anybody else, you can only change yourself." Sometimes changing yourself or how you interact with other people will change how they respond to you, but that change is not always what you might want. You cannot change your mother and her manipulation of your brother; you cannot change your brother's
      "rescue" of her, you can only hope that he will eventually get tired of donning the armor and leaping on the white horse and galloping to the rescue...but you cannot make him do so.

      What do I suggest? Read up on triangulation...start with the article in this blog and then go to Google. In particular, read up on the "splitting" form of triangulation. Stay away from the websites noted in the "Beware these sites" tabs at the top of the page. And try this:

      The next time your brother calls with some tale of woe, just say this to him: "That is not true. When you are ready to hear the truth, call me back. Until then, don't contact me." Then hang up the phone. EVERYTIME he calls you to chew you out, say this. Do not fail to do it even once. My therapist called this technique "broken record" and you keep it up until he finally either stops calling you or he get curious enough to actually listen to you.

      If he persists, tell him he is stalking/harassing you, it is against the law, and if he persists, you will get a restraining order...but when he is ready to hear the truth, you will meet him in person, in a public place (he is less likely to be verbally abusive in front of witnesses) and tell him the truth. It would be good to meet him armed with some printouts of things you find on the web about triangulation because it is very clear that this is what she is doing and unless he is an N himself, he just might see what is going on.

      But do not ever forget--you cannot change another person and in particular, you cannot expect an N to change except, perhaps, to get worse. All you can do is to stand up to them and refuse to be a part of their game. (Seeing a therapist won't hurt you, either, and you are not only grieving the loss of your father, now your relationship with the rest of your family has changed in a negative fashion, which also provokes grief.)

      I am so very sorry this happened to you and I wish you the best of luck in dealing with it.

      Hugs,

      Violet

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  8. Dear Violet, thanks so much for your reply....it is such a relief I found this site. I think you are definately correct, when my dad was alive, he was her Nsupply....after he passed, she turned to begin a campaign to manipulate my gc brother to fill in for my dad, to be her new N supply and to champion her every whim and be her spokesperson and flying monkey

    All of this nonsense took a turn for the worse recently, the GC has been running to her "rescue" more and more, and it has become more extreme with him feeing the need to monitor or intercept my communication with her. I became aware some months ago that he and her have discussions about me behind my back. I guess its what you called triangulation....big time. I became aware of it slowly but one day it was confirmed when my mom used the exact phrasing as my brother had the week before. I recognized it, and called her out on it, saying "you are repeating what gc said, sorry, but I recognize it as that is the exact phrase he used last week" Of course, she denied it and said it had "nothing to do with him".
    The morning of mothers day I called my mom wishing her a happy mothers day, as hard as it was. She replied by saying "happy mothers day, EVEN THOUGh your not my mother"......I guess she just could not manage to summon up a heartfelt mothers day greeting without making a backhanded jab , it was as it to say "well, I dont owe it to you, but happy mothers day"..........I mentioned to her that my bf mom had told me happy mothers day, and that she did not minimize it by pointing out I am not her mother .I said that I have wished friends a happy mothers day, and been wished it by others who I am not their mother. She then told me angrily "well anyways, I WANT to go out to eat EARLY" as if her needs are the only ones that matter. I firmly told her "mom, I know YOU want to go early, but it also depends on our schedule. We arent available until later today" she hung up on me.
    Since all of this happened (its more than I can write here) I became seriously depressed.

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  9. Reading your blog ha given me so much validation my mother has been gas lighting my whole life especially as I've gotten older, when I was 15 I finally t her I had enough after she tried to choke me and I almost went down a flight of stairs, the problem being that I was 4 inches taller and much stronger than her when I broke her choke hold I almost fell down the stairs. The funny thing is that every instance that I bring up like this she acts like crazy and that it never happen her newest trick is making up ridiculous stories changing the past that I was witnessed to and yet it doesn't seem to bother her that i am fully aware that she is lying. But what struck me the most was your birth story I literally laughed out loud. My first child she was present for the birth and the entire time all she did was talk about how much harder her labor had been, while I lay in pain, and in poetic justice she was showered with the amniotic fluid when my daughter, her first grandchild, came bursting out she spent the rest of the day talking about how he had been soaked with the fluid while wearing white pant and heels. More recently my third child was born via emergency c-section. She was fortunately not in attendance because of falling out but had been texting with my husband up until he informed her of the c-section and then she said only so happy for you and I didn't hear from her for two weeks only for her to call to talk about herself and then when she finally decided to come meet her new grand son, whom I named after my recently deceased brother who was living with my mother and that's a whole can of worms I'm not ready to dissect yet, she never asked once how I was feeling and kept commenting on an injury to her own hand and oh poor me it hurt so bad look at look it I had to have stitches until I finally said I have no sympathy for you I major surgery a few weeks ago, to which she replied, yeah well now thy do this incision where it's under your bikini line and its not as invasive, really I know what it's like I had one and you didn't! The worst story however was when we were saying our goodbyes to my brother before we turned off life support and she decided that she would make it so my dad and his wife couldn't go in together that only my dad was allowed, my brother ha died an she could not stand for her not be the center of all the attention. I almost lost my mind especially after I grabbed her arm to try and calm her down and she looked at me with such hate in her eyes and told me no don't touch me! I'm sorry I digress I find this very therapeutic I want to write every evil thing I can remember. Thank you for writing this blog, I've found other sites but they're usually about a romantic spouse never about someone you cannot simply walk away from.

    Off topic I was curious about of someone helps you write just because you are from So Cal but you use spellings and slang from the UK?

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    1. I do all my own writing...I AM from California, but I've been living in South Africa for nearly 10 years (I married a South African and moved here to share his beautiful country with him) and we use British English here, including spellings and slang. After a while you pick up the terms and my computer is set for South African English and has a fit when I "misspell" something when I write in "American"! But I have managed to hang on to my American accent...I get asked about it all the time!

      If you haven't already done so, you should read my blog entry on Journalling. You sound like the kind of person who would both enjoy and benefit from it. Also, you might find the entry on gaslighting to be interesting as well. Your NM sounds just like mine with respect to the C-section (called simply "having a Caesar" over here): hers was so much more dramatic, painful, shocking, everything, than mine...and although my stepmother was in the room, NM ignored her and tried to have one of those "bonding" moments with my father. Narcissists really have no manners and only fake them when it is to their advantage.

      If you are interested in other sites that approach the same subject, there is a list in the right-hand column of my blog you might find useful, as well as a list of good books.

      Thank you for writing and best of luck to you dealing with your NM...it is never easy and it helps so much to know that you are not the only one dealing with her special brand of crazy!

      Hugs to you

      Violet

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  10. My mother always liked my brother the best, my skinny sister offended her less than me. I had a little email contact with her seven years ago (we haven't spoken for 15 years). She nagged me to write to my brother, the GC. So I did to keep the peace. Then they discussed what I wrote (needless to say nothing about me was of any consequence). She complained about my emails not being personal enough. Well that was because I knew anything I told her would be used as a weapon, and she could insist I write to my brother, but I would do it my way, at my pace. She was very angry, and now I understand why, even though everything I wrote at this stage was very polite. However I refused to engage the way she wanted and she did not like it. Of course she made me angry and I wrote her an angry reply, but I didn't send it - I deleted it and wrote her something very innocuous and pleasant in a superficial way. She couldn't deal with that and never wrote back.

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  11. I just found your blog. It's fantastic. Thank you so much for your dedication on this topic. I recently went NC with my mother following the loss of our first baby. She's been erratic and demanding ever since. How do you get the narcissist to accept the NC? Even though she lives miles away, she will threaten surprise visits with no warning. It's very stressful.

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    1. You set and maintain some serious boundaries. This blog entry should help: http://narcissistschild.blogspot.com/2012/12/the-abc-of-boundaries-keeping.html

      If you respond to her in any way, you are breaking NC and if you break NC...even to tell her that you are NC and to leave you alone...you encourage her to keep bugging you. You must maintain no contact whatsoever for a long enough time that she gives up on you and seeks her Nsupply elsewhere.

      If she shows up at the door unannounced, shut the door in her face. Don't say a word, just shut the door and lock it. And if she pounds on the door and won't leave, call the police. Have them take her away. I know it sounds harsh, but with some Ns you simply cannot be nice. She is not being nice, she is not being respectful of your wishes or feelings, there is no reason you have to be.

      No contact means just that: NO CONTACT. Every time you break it, even if it is to remind her that you are NC, you prove to her you don't mean it and that if she is persistent enough, you will eventually give in. So, if you really want to be NC with her, you have to be 100% NC with her until she finally seeks another source of Nsupply and leaves you alone.

      Hugs and best of luck with this

      Violet

      Delete

I don't publish rudeness, so please keep your comments respectful, not only to me, but to those who comment as well. We are not all at the same point in our recovery.