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9 thoughts on “7 Steps in Healing From a Narcissistic Parent

  • January 14, 2017 at 4:03 pm
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    Where does one begin? This article is pretty much worthless and facile. For women I recommend looking up the book, “Will I ever be worthy?” It’s a wonderful, helpful, insightful book which can be found on Amazon. It is about daughters of narcissistic mothers. Overcoming a childhood with a narcissistic parent is very painful and I strongly advise people to seek out therapy for guidance and support. I’m always so disappointed when I run across an article like this-we deserve more. This is a joke.

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  • April 5, 2017 at 12:00 pm
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    @SlimKeith sorry, I very much disagree with your comment. This article was SO accurate for me, and gave me hope of actually being at a point of soon moving past all of this as I can relate to everything the author is saying. I can relate because I have been through each step she has spoken of, and I feel better/stronger each and every day. It’s been 3 1/2 years since I went no contact, so it’s been a long road.

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  • May 10, 2017 at 11:43 pm
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    Hi Christine,

    Thank you for posting this. I’ve been educating myself lately after discovering several articles describing the narcissistic mother which all served as a spot on description of my childhood (and adolescence, and early adulthood) while searching for help on how to bring up a sensitive topic with my mom. I’ve been struggling to deal with this- I still speak to my mother often, and I finally settled into the role of whipping post, parent, emotional rock, caretaker, etc. without letting her cause me too much emotional harm to bear. I set boundaries, and I found ways to maximize the good parts of our relationship. As a child, I yearned for those moments where my mom actually listened to me and treated me like a person, and those moments have become more frequent as I get older. She’s overcoming her anger and learning to be more patient, and I learned to walk away as soon as she gets to a place that she can’t turn back from and I’m going to end up in tears driving home.

    Every other thing I’ve read has made strict recommendations about cutting her out of my life, either entirely or limiting contact to brief, unemotional phone calls and emails, but I can’t imagine doing that. She is mentally ill, and has been her whole life. She currently takes care of my schizophrenic/ bipolar adult brother (they do NOT have a good relationship either, but I’ve always been able to tell that the thing she wants most is to be needed, and he can’t hold down a job and is always kicked out by roommates), and I’m in therapy, on meds, married, and getting my PhD; I’m moderately stable and I don’t NEED to cut her out to move on from this. I’ve never been able to talk to any of my therapists about this because I don’t want to hear their advice. I don’t want to see their faces when I tell them how I experienced my family life. My question is, can she change? She has been growing as she nears retirement and starts to calm down, and I’ve been encouraging her to go to therapy and consider other medications to help her handle her “anger issues”. All I’ve ever wanted in my life is to feel like someone has my back no matter what, and I’ve never felt fully supported. When I lived abroad for several years our relationship was quite good, so I know we can get somewhere. Should I discuss any of this with her (she’ll flip out, but she might consider it)? I want a real mom, and I want my kids to have a loving grandmother (she is amazing with kids that aren’t her own as well as pets, so I’m hoping she’ll give the same love to my kids that she gave to her kindergarten students).

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    • May 11, 2017 at 6:58 am
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      Many narcissists do mellow with age (see my article on narcissism and dementia). In my experience, it is not always beneficial to cut a person out of your life. Sometimes the loving thing to do is except a person’s limitations and love them in spite of their short-comings. As for change, it is possible as the brain ages because some of the parts that control the narcissism deteriorate. It sounds like you are on the right path.

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  • July 1, 2017 at 3:42 am
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    I feel lucky to find this article.it was in first five google suggestions to the phrase i searched !
    I saw one opposition to your opinion. And here i am enough thrilled about this article to post this lines.
    Thank you for your article. Thank you very much in fact.
    This world in my eyes is simple and complicated simultaneously , so I decline to enter a debate how the negative comment may be wrong or right.
    I am going to use your recommendations {or prescriptions} with something more than “hope”.

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  • September 4, 2017 at 2:09 am
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    This isn’t a bad basic outline, but recovering almost certainly involves a therapist who truly understands the damage and difficulties from being raised by a narcissistic parent.

    A narcissistic parent denies one their humanity. In order to claim one’s humanity, taken at childhood, and be comfortable in it can be incredibly difficult. This requires the assistance of people who are supportive and understanding and often this begins with a therapist because many people just don’t appreciate the damage a narcissist creates.

    One of the sayings that I’ve come to appreciate is “However bad you think it was being raised by a narcissist, it was worse.” because it is difficult even for the victim to appreciate the damage that is done.

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