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The Narcissistic Mother

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Re: The Narcissistic Mother

Postby TerryP117 » Thu Apr 15, 2010 8:45 pm

OMG, what a wonderful article about narcissistic mothers! It was a lengthy read, but oh so accurate. To all of you on here who have narcissistic mothers, please tell me what you've done about it. I'm 61 y.o., my mother is 84, and I finally told her this week in a phone call all of the mean, selfish, miserable things she's done to me throughout my life and that I don't want to be treated that way any longer. I talked nonstop for 20 minutes, reminding her of the scores of hateful things she did and why I feel so unloved. When I was done, she said this -- "Well, I can see how much you hate me. There's nothing I can say. Goodbye."

She hung up. Once again she turned it around and didn't see the things I pointed out as her hating ME....she saw it as me proving to her that I hate HER.

Please tell me, where do I go from here? I really would appreciate your advice. We have had three very lengthy estrangements (1-1/2 years, six months, and three months), and each time it was me who initiated reconciliation. She has never, ever reached out to me.

My two sons (ages 31 and 38) haven't spoken to her in nearly seven years since their father died, because she did and said many mean and hateful things at the time of his death.

I'm feeling pretty crappy and could really use the advice of others who've lived this. Thanks. Terry
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Re: The Narcissistic Mother

Postby Myers » Thu Apr 15, 2010 11:43 pm

If your mother has done nothing but wrong to you and your family, then why reconcile at all?
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Re: The Narcissistic Mother

Postby TerryP117 » Fri Apr 16, 2010 1:18 am

Myers wrote:If your mother has done nothing but wrong to you and your family, then why reconcile at all?

I hear you, Myers, but I keep coming back to the fact that she's 84. (Please remember, I've had 61 years of conditioning by my mother, and it's hard to break free). :roll:
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Re: The Narcissistic Mother

Postby LifeSong » Fri Apr 16, 2010 1:42 am

I have lived this, and am living this.

Where do you go from here? You go back to yourself, literally and figuratively.

You start living your life from YOU, not from her. From the center of who you are. If you don't know who you are ( many children of profound narcissists do not know), then get some help to discover yourself. Good help. Maybe therapy, not just talking it over with girlfriends.

Start really working on yourself, and ... let go of her. Let go. Really let go.

How you let go doesn't matter as much as that you really let go.

Letting go can take many forms.
The 'other board' mandates no contact. That's one way. But it's a harsh way. And it can backfire if you're not growing and changing in other ways. A person can be very very connected to another person, even if they're 'no contact'.
Another way is to get angry for awhile that's needed - you're already doing that if you've already told her for 20 mins straight how she's harmed you.
Another way is education, so that you see that she's not all she's cut herself out to be. Lots of stuff I could say here but one thing is that you still think you need her.. you may deny this but deep down, in your little girl heart, you still think you need her.. and that she needs you. Neither of these are true.
Another way is therapy or group work; I think that's very important for kids of profound narcissistists who are still somewhat pulling the strings (and she is still pulling your strings if you're still so mad and lost).
Another way is talking about it.. for awhile. Not too long. Some people make a career out of being victimized, and they love to tell their war stories over and over and over.
There are more ways. No one way is THE way. Some mixture will work for you. But you gotta start doing it and doing it for all you're worth if you're going to get free.
The same way I tell narcissists that changing take commitment and work.. it's true for their children too... healing and changing and growing will take commitment and work and effort from you. I won't come from just reading a board, although that might be a place to start.

One of the most effective ways of letting go is to get very interested in other things... like yourself. Focus on you and those you love.
And when you think about her, just open up your hands and your heart and let her go again. Just let her go.

I'm not 'no contact' with my mother, and she's far worse than the mother described in this article. I was for awhile, at the beginning. I needed to get away, get some perspective, sort some things out, claim the emotional distance that fostered my development of an identity sans her.
But she's in my life now, in a limited way and on my terms, because I've let her go. She has no claim on me anymore.

Focus on you. Get to know you better. And let her go... really go.
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Re: The Narcissistic Mother

Postby littlewing » Fri Apr 16, 2010 1:55 am

Good point Myers, but I understand where Terry is coming from. A total break isn't right for everyone. They sure can manipulate us with their age and general vulnerability. The child ends up looking like neglectful and insensitive when they cut off contact or stand up for themselves. Like LifeSong mentioned earlier in the thread, you can be assistive and supportive of an aging, disordered parent without sacrificing too much of yourself. It's all about setting limits. Recently I started hanging up on her when she yells or abuses me on the phone. I simply say, "please lower your voice or I'll hang up". She usually doesn't, so I have to hang up. If it happens in person, I get up and leave. Sometimes it gets tricky if I can't leave her stranded somewhere. If I'm the one that's going to be stranded, I'll call a cab or walk. It's totally worth it if it means preserving my dignity and self-esteem. It's a slow, painful process of behavior modification. Even if her behavior doesn't improve, you'll feel better about yourself and you'll regain some self-respect.

Stay strong and keep learning and posting.
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Re: The Narcissistic Mother

Postby TerryP117 » Fri Apr 16, 2010 11:00 am

Thank you all for your posts. You make excellent points and give me much food for thought. Thank you for taking the time to share these insights.

By the way, it was two separate psychologists who told me my mother was an N. I first saw a therapist in my 30s because of problems with my mother. Finally, after a couple of months, he said it was obvious to him that she is a N. Years later, because of continued problems with my mother, I saw a different therapist. Without telling him the diagnosis the first therapist made, he quickly told me that she is a N. They both based this on the things I told them about her.

I have one brother, six years younger than me. Sadly, he, too, turned out to be a N. In addition, he's a fundamentalist Christian and talks religion 24/7. Last week he told me I'm a "vile woman" and "at the end of my days, I'm going to a dark place." This was brought on because our father (who was divorced from my mother) died Mar. 30, and we're trying to clear out his house to put it on the market. My father had an extensive gun collection, which my brother immediately took, telling me that my father "would have wanted him to have them." My father named me executrix in his will, and when I told my brother that the guns should be considered part of his estate to divide, that's when he made these comments. My mother got into the fray, siding with my brother, and that's what brought all of this to a head this week.

As the world turns....... :(
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Re: The Narcissistic Mother

Postby littlewing » Fri Apr 16, 2010 3:41 pm

After reading LifeSong's post and hearing more about your story, my behavior mod methods probably won't help much. She is 84 after all. Since you have family matters to take care of, a clean break isn't realistic. Do you have anyone who can advocate for you and support you in the family? Maybe a lawyer or a mediator can help? Negotiating gun ownership with narcissists sounds pretty scary to me. My friend dealt with a similar problem when her parents died. Now her brother is holed up in their house with a huge gun collection and she worries about him constantly. Not a good situation to say the least.
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Re: The Narcissistic Mother

Postby littlewing » Fri Apr 16, 2010 3:44 pm

My mom is also a fundamentalist Christian. I wonder how common this is with PD folks. Now that my mother claims to be "favored" by God she's calmer in some ways and more dangerous in others.
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Re: The Narcissistic Mother

Postby TerryP117 » Fri Apr 16, 2010 4:45 pm

Thanks, LittleWing. It's not my mother who is fundamental Christian, it's my BROTHER. He found religion about 15 years ago, and talks religion 24/7 (I'm not exaggerating). He thinks because I'm not a born-again Christian, that I'm not a REAL Christian. He hasn't sent me a Christmas card for 2-3 years, even though I send him one, and when I asked him why, he said, "Because you're not a Christian." "Well, what am I -- a Hindu?" I said incredulously. "You might as well be," he answered.

My mother has always favored my brother (he's six years younger). From what I read, he would be the Golden Child, and I'm the Scapegoat. She has given him her house, which he lives in, and she moved to a subsidized-income, one bedroom apartment. She has told me that everything she owns, and all her savings (which isn't much) is going to Jimmy.

My husband died of a ruptured brain aneurysm in 2003 at age 54, and she was so horrible to us that my two sons haven't talked to her since then. She didn't even send flowers or a memorial contribution in his memory. She told my brother, "I can't afford it. I'm broke."

I also have a 36 y.o. mentally retarded daughter who lives with me. She attends a sheltered workshop each day. NOT ONCE IN MY CHILDREN'S LIVES HAS SHE EVER HAD ONE GRANDCHILD TO HER HOUSE FOR A VISIT OR AN OVERNIGHT. My husband used to be amazed by it, because his parents were so loving to their grandchildren.

There is so much more.....I wouldn't even know where to start. :cry:
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Re: The Narcissistic Mother

Postby two_roads » Fri Apr 16, 2010 9:31 pm

littlewing wrote:My mom is also a fundamentalist Christian. I wonder how common this is with PD folks.


It depends how she's practicing her " religious feelings and beliefs" . If it's done in a self-centered way, it may be related to Narcissism actually.
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