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Old 05-20-2014, 03:47 PM   #1
blisfulmelody Female
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Default Maternal Narcissism.

My parents... My mom was a single parent. My father was gone.

I hope it's okay to post on this subject here. I wanted to make a post narcissism and the damages it has done not just to me, but millions all over the world who are silent victims, most of whom aren't even aware of what's happened to them. The textbook version of narcissism is that it's about self obsession, vanity, etc. I've witnessed people casually joking about narcissists, but it's much more sinister than just plain vanity. Healthy amounts of narcissism are okay, but what happens when it gets out of hand? It's a disorder. Psychopaths ARE narcissists. NPD or narcissistic personality disorder is not easy to detect because narcissists do not think there is anything wrong with them so of course they are not going to seek help.

When conversing with someone, we get a mirror image of ourselves reflected back to us. Its feedback, letting us know our message was received. It's attention. Narcissists can't get enough attention. It's like a drug to them. Getting attention is a good thing, we all like to get attention, but with a narc it's all you give and they take.

We all are probably familiar with the overt narcissist, the likes of Kanye West singing about how he's a "god", the greedy politician who puts on a false mask of niceness, there are various types. Then there is also the covert narcissist, the introverted narcissist, who is has such low self worth, she actually believes she is worthless. Thus, she becomes codependent upon a narcissist to fulfill her needs.

To learn more, you can read "Malignant Self Love" by Sam Vakin (who interestingly is a self realized NPD narcissist) free online. Also "What Makes a Narcissist Tick" is free online. These are great resources to arm yourself with knowledge and know what to do if you encounter a narc or how to detect them, which it's very hard to detect them because they are such good liars and manipulators. They could be in your family, the workplace, etc. You might even have been raised by on and not know it because of your conditioning. Knowledge is power.

Maternal narcissism is when it involves a narc raising a child. You can probably imagine how devastatingly neglectful this sort of upbringing would be.

My grandma was highly narcissistic. Judging from what I witnessed of her, I would say she had full blown NPD. Later in life, it was discovered that she also had brain tumor, as well as Huntington's disease (though there was never a blood test to prove this).

My grandma never allowed anyone to call her "grandma" in fact we were only allowed to call her "grandmother" and if we messed up, we were met with either a tantrum, rage, or some other emotionally manipulative plight. Guilt. Triangulation. Infantalization. Projection. And many more... All part of her game and she played it well until her death. Triangulation is where the parent will purposely encourage sibling rivalry, picking a golden child as her favorite (usually the one who is more obedient) and a scapegoat (the one who rebels or shows signs of having her own identity). My mother was the scapegoat.

My mom's upbringing was sad and I never realized it until I grew up and found out the truth about my family and my life. You become so conditioned to the abuse that you think it's normal. It's all about image. I was to put on a happy face, ignore anything bad or especially any FEELINGS, constantly invalidated, constantly criticized, unreal expectations of perfection, no allowance for mistakes. Family members, friends, everyone you come close to is turned against you by the narcissist. The narcissist wants you to suffer. She enjoys your suffering. There is NO LOVE in a family of narcissists. "Love" is used conditionally as a tool to manipulate you to their will. That is how it works. They are a machine that is incapable of real love because they are so disconnected from themselves.

So, as you can imagine, the child who grows up in this world of negativity is unable to be herself, for the only Self she is allowed to be is the one the narcissist projects onto her. She is a mere extension, a MIRROR of the narcissist. An object.

Sad, isn't it? Not only for the child of the narc, but for the narc. It is a neverending, sad, destructive cycle.

My story is long and I've written a lot already, so I will try to not overdo this post. Here is a memory from my childhood to give an example of what its like. If you are easily triggered by emotional abuse stories, or physically abusive stories, I suggest you stop here as this may be considered graphic to some.

My mother had an emotional attachment to dogs. Not like normal people. She uses dogs as a form of narc supply (attention) which is perfect because dogs don't talk back like kids do. This one dog we had was a stray she took in, a mixed breed of husky and greyhound and it was a large dog. The dog was aggressive and mean from the beginning. It had separation anxiety and would attack me if I tried to leave my bedroom or the house for school in the morning. My mother would keep it on the porch, but I'd have to go through the porch to get to the bus. It ripped my pants on numerous occasions. It attacked my cousin, ripping her pants, attacked friends that came over, they literally had to climb on top of their car to avoid getting bitten (which I rarely had friends growing up and never kept them, wonder why), attacked basically everyone BUT her. When it acted this way, she'd just ignore what happened and reward the bad behavior by loving it or giving it a treat, which just reinforced the message that it was doing nothing wrong at all. It was like being in a wolf pack, and I was at the bottom of it.

My mom would put on a happy face around my friends. Friends who I had to beg to be allowed to invite over would come over and my mom's act would be on full display. She'd purposely press my buttons in front of them in order to get me to react and when I would they'd look at me like I was the nutcase and question me why I dislike my mom so much, she's just "awesome!" and "so nice." Enter the game of the Narcissist. They love messing with your head. I only had 1 friend who saw through her facade and we are still friends to this day.

When I was 15 years old, the dog was in her bedroom so it was safe to go out to the kitchen to get something to eat. While I was in the kitchen she decided to go take a bath leaving the dog to guard the door outside the bathroom, which was directly across from my bedroom. I normally would just wait outside until it was put away, if I tried to argue with her she'd either ignore or rage. I made the stupid mistake of trying to sneak past it and get into my room anyway. It attacked and latched its teeth into 2 different spots on each of my arms, my shoulder, my stomach, my ankle, and left scratches all over my body and face. I still have the scars. This went on for some time even though my mother was RIGHT behind the bathroom door. It seemed to go on forever until finally my enabling stepfather came out of the bedroom and pulled it off of me. He didn't comfort me, he just complained to my mom to come out and get her dog in this annoyed and slightly shaken up voice. He is a passive enabler. The enabling "father figure." My real father was a deadbeat and I never knew him.

My mother came out of the bathroom in a towel and started yelling at ME for provoking the dog. It came over to her wagging its tail and she said "come on Dodger" in a comforting voice as if the DOG was the VICTIM! Saying I teased it, saying its no wonder he attacks you, saying I deserved what I got, saying she didn't feel bad for me, that that's what happens when you tease a dog (which I NEVER did! LIES! Lies that she used to make me look bad to others and to explain the dogs "bad behavior" it was all my fault of course) etc. etc. I was BLEEDING on the floor of the hallway, bitten in multiple places, crying like you can't imagine. My stepfather was the one who actually showed a small sign of remorse and told my mom the wounds were bad enough for me to have to go to the hospital. My mom was furious. At first she refused to do so but my stepfather kept pressing her on the matter until she finally, in an angry and annoyed demeanor, agreed. As if I were ruining her "me time."

The ENTIRE way to the hospital, she raged at me, blamed me, projected at me, threatened me that if I told the hospital staff that it was her dog, that I'd be grounded forever and never get to go anywhere, that she'd disown me, etc. (all normal behavior I was used to btw).

At the hospital, the nurse staff/doctor all knew something was wrong by the way I was acting. Of course, my mom's "act" was up again, the perfect doting mother showing (fake) concern for her only child and how awful it was that "some people" allow their dogs to roam free and risk attacks like this. (shock and awe!) I had stitches and a tetanus shot, which was rather painful. In pain, emotionally and physically, all the while watching my mother's pathetic display of fakeness parading it around in front of me and everyone knowing FULL WELL what just happened but absorbing all the attention for herself as if SHE herself were the victim. Step father (who I suspect is a covert narc) passively acting as though nothing major had happened, still on my mother's side. No remorse, no empathy, nothing from either of them other than for themselves for having to deal with it all. One nurse looked me in the eyes and asked me if that is the real story, as if she could sense my aversion to my mother, which my mother was staring at me like a cobra at that moment. I just agreed with the story.

On the way home, I get the usual fake concerned mommy "I'm sorry... BUT (there's always a but) you shouldn't have teased the dog, "honey" (shudder). We need to talk about your issues." Which made me rage back at her in anger which made her play victim, hence getting even MORE narc supply from her enabling husband for having such a "mean daughter." Poor me syndrome. See how it works???

The narcissist differs from the psychopath due to the fact that a psychopath will go on a killing spree to punish the victims. Killers like - well, to kill. The narcissist will just drive you to suicide so you kill yourself. This way they are still completely innocent. Pretty demented stuff, right?

So now we face the issue of what happens to the adult child of the narcissist. Well she has to come to terms with the fact that her mother WILL NEVER be able to love her like a real mother. That she never even had a mother to begin with and that she was always nothing more than a mirror, an object, a toy for the narc mother to play with. That she will never get to experience the joy of spending mother's day, christmas, thanksgiving, with loving family members like most people she knows. She will never be able to get back all the years of neglect and abuse and accept the fact that she is damaged and will probably have to do extensive work on herself in order to heal, if that ever even happens. Will she ever truly heal? Is there hope for the child of a narcissist? The narcissist is the child of the narcissist. My mother wasn't all bad, she sometimes was good. We all have good and bad in us right? This is the reason that we go back. We remember the good. And it's sad.

It's a very sad thing.
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Old 05-24-2014, 10:37 AM   #2
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Default Re: Maternal Narcissism.

Thank you for sharing that. I can imagine it was a difficult thing to share something so personal. Narcissism is so scary, because it is so easily undetected.
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Old 06-13-2014, 05:14 PM   #3
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Default Re: Maternal Narcissism.

Thank you. I hope by posting this that it may help others in some way.
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Old 03-22-2015, 10:10 PM   #4
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Default Re: Maternal Narcissism.

I was living with my narcisstic mom when I was in labor and a year and a half after having my daughter. During that time she must have gone through 3 boyfriends, which I didn't think was appropriate. Now, don't get me wrong. I was really grateful she helped out and supported me. She could have thrown me out of the house at any given moment and force me to fend for myself. Well...she did the following year and I moved out to live with my boyfriend and his parents in their cramped, tiny house.
Every night she woke up to my daughter crying. I didn't hear her right away because I was so sleep deprived I went into a deep sleep, but I did wake up a few minutes later, when my mom barged in my room, yelling at me because my daughter was crying. So, then I would try to see what she wanted. Then that wasn't enough. All of a sudden my mom accuses me spoiling my daughter because I pick her up everytime she cries. So then she brings the carrier and makes me pace around the room carrying my daughter in that all the while she's wailing. 5 minutes later my mom would burst in my room and yell at me some more because she wouldn't stop crying. Even if my daughter was just up and not making any sound, it would keep my mom up and she would get angry again because she can't sleep, and blame me for not going to be early enough when I was pregnant.
I couldn't do anything right. The house couldn't be clean enough. Everything had to be done when she got home and her life had to be as easy as possible.

When I was younger, I felt she was more focused on finding a guy in her life even if he wasn't nice to me. Luckily, nothing to bad has happened to me.

More recently, she asked me if I hated her and why I'm so angry with her. I don't show a lot of anger towards her and I usually bend to everything she asks of me. There have been some things that have bothered me that were said to me. I tried to talk to my mom about it and she turned it around and started getting mad at how horrible her life was and that I should understand what she went through as a child. She was placed in foster care by her dad after her mom left. Her and her siblings were separated frequently. After 10 years of not contacting her dad, she forgave him. I heard the stories of her childhood all my life. She would tell them to me like they were just fictional stories. Or some times she would reminisce. I like to bring stuff up in my childhood, too. But I feel I'm being placed under a bright light and put on the spot. The question that would come up out of the blue from her is "So, what's your point?" or "So, what are you getting at?" or of I want to show her something I think she would be interested in " So, what's the punch line? My (boyfriend) tries to explain things all the time and there is always a punch line?" Uh, hello.! I'm daughter. Not your boyfriend. She doesn't want me to talk about anything in my childhood, now. She thinks it makes her look bad. And then, she get's all worried about my reputation yet she spills everything I need to talk to her about to her boyfriend, sentence by sentence, while I'm there or on the phone and talks to them like I'm not there. Then she goes to me "Okay, go on." Uh, no. How many guys know all my dirty laundry out there? (rhetorical question.)
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Old 03-22-2015, 10:39 PM   #5
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Default Re: Maternal Narcissism.

Thanks you for sharing. I hope it helps in your healing. Read my passt posts re: the Motherthing. She was not as dangerous as your mom, but I often feared for my sons, even when they were not up there physically. I suspect she's narc with Borderline Personality disorder.
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