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.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Food for thought...


  1. I applaud your courage to call your mother exactly what she is. I only hope you can recover from having the misfortune of being the child of another child.

  2. Really enjoying this blog. When it comes from someone who has been through it themselves it means more. My NM is a "P" too. At least my therapist thought so. Anyway, if I ever stood up for myself bc my NM was disrespecting me, she then accused me of disrespecting her. How dare I defend myself. It then ends up being her word or interpretation of events against mine. Im pretty certain she tells things like this to the family, who dont really talk to me, and of course they believe her bc I was so called bad from the start. Its the child's fault, oh yeah right. I think there's a lot of projection going on here. She thinks I am the very way she is or makes whats she saying about me become a reality by misguiding me into that position.

    1. You show exceptional insight.

      When I was a teen, my mother used to accuse me of all kinds of things I wasn't fact, she would accuse me of all kinds of things I had never even thought of! Eventually I complained to my father (they had been divorced for several years) and he explained to me that these were things she actually did as a teen, or things she would have done if she had found a way to get away with them. He didn't know the word "projection" in this context, but he sure could recognize it!

      So, your NM is projecting and, from your last sentence, I would say she is manipulating. You don't say how old you are, but my advice to you is to keep standing up for yourself...but don't do it in a rebellious or back-sassy manner because that makes her feel justified. Be calm and rational and when she starts playing her "tit for tat" game, refuse to engage her.

      If you allow her to provoke you to anger or outbursts, she wins. Don't play her game with her. Be firm, rational, and calm (this can be very hard to do, so don't expect it to be easy). For example, when you say she is being disrespectful to you and she counters with "well, YOU are being disrespectful to ME" you can respond with "this is not about my behaviour, it is about yours and you are being disrespectful to me" If she tries to come at it another way, just repeat yourself calmly (this is a technique my therapist taught me that she calls "broken record"). You stay calm, poised, and keep repeating yourself until the other person either shuts up or acknowledges your point. "This isn't about my behaviour, it is about yours."

      She is not going to change. Narcissists don't. So what you need to do is find ways for you to deal with her, especially if you are unable to put distance between you.

      If you are still living at home, you are just going to have to put up with her lies to the rest of the family, but when you are able to go out on your own, I would recommend (after you are out) that you write a letter to the more influential members of the family (who do they listen to even more than your NM? A grandmother? an aunt?) and write a very rational (meaning not emotionally overwrought) letter explaining that you have moved out of your mother's house and plan to have little or no contact with her in the future, so if they hear things about you from her, they are most likely made up because you are not planning to be in touch with her after this. You could further state that she spent much of your childhood and youth spinning yarns about you to make them feel sorry for her by painting you as some kind of a bad seed, and you hope to stop this by not giving her any opportunities to know what is going on in your life and if they have questions about the truth of things they have been told about you to date, please ask and you will give them the absolute truth. Do not send a copy to your NM: the gossips in the family will make sure she gets wind of it...but by then your seed of truth has been planted. Telling her too early about this letter gives her an opportunity to sabotage you and make herself look like your victim to the family.

      So, the bottom line is, don't fall into your NM's traps and get out and get away as soon as you can. As long as she has a foothold in your life, she has grist for her gossip mill. You cannot change her or her gossiping can only change yourself.

  3. Violet, thank you. I like the calm broken record technique as well as approaching family through a written, non emotional letter. To tell you a little about myself, my age is 48. I have had 25 years of therapy to date. The real progress began in the last 5 years and then crescendoed just last Fall when I could finally see the dangerous picture for what is was. Years ago I held a highly skilled profession but after 12 years became disabled. In order to make progress I had to first be taught to think logically rather than emotionally. And also to believe in myself so that my realities were not distorted by NM. For example, when I started to see the light she tried things like talking like a baby in order to throw me psychologically. Also lying to me, get this, about me. Trying to convince me that my history did not happen the way it did. When I could finally say to myself, hey I know better, and yes I did hear baby talk rather than having a hallucination, I began to really get well. Once that happened she really let her fangs show. Luckily I am out of her house now and am LC with her soon to be NC. Thanks again.

  4. I love reading this. Very emotional but inspiring letter.

  5. It also works the other way around. I was a good mother and my daughter disrespected at every chance she got - my husband encouraged it. It started in the 5-6th grade and progressively got worst as she got older. I felt when she was 18. Never divorced her father, they lived together. Then I found out that she was addicted to Percocet for most of her high school years and he knew it. They decided to tell me after the 1st year that I left on Thanksgiving. He has recently passed away of kidney cancer and my daughter was and is still furious with me as well as his brother and sister that I (1) left him and (2) that I had a life insurance policy on him. They omitted my name from his obituary and I don't have any contact with my daughter. Oh and when he did get diagnosed I was the one bringing him for his chemo treatments, taking care of health care and all the while I was doing that I was being accosted by my daughter who had already started stealing his meds and terminated her methadone treatments.


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