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Straight talk about NPD...questions.


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Just to clarify, my mother was raised by the sociopathic NPD person (my grandmother.) My mom was not NPD- she had PTSD and physical disabilities due to my grandmother. My mom, given the cr@p hand she was dealt did a decent job as a parent, certainly we were never abused like an had been and she moved us 3000 miles away from her mother when we were young. My mom died at age 55, my grandmother is unfairly still kickin' it.

 

I get the no funeral thing. I am not joking the when I get wind of her death I am more likely to crack open a bottle of bubbly and celebrate than mourn. She is vile. I have seen her 2 times in the last 17 years and that is 2 times too many. I told her that if she travelled here for my mom's funeral, I would get a police officer to escort her out. Had she or any of the family that feeds her drama and mimics her come to town, I would have hired off duty cops to be bouncers at the funeral. She was telling my mother that she was going to hell for being Catholic just months prior to my mom's death after a 14 year battle with cancer. My mom, like a lot of abused kids was still seeking her mom's love and approval. I cut off my grandmother's phone access to my mom. She would have come and made the whole funeral about her...how she lost her precious daughter. The daughter she beat up, abused and shamed endlessly. She took joy from putting my mother and anyone else she could sink her teeth into down in any possible way.

 

:grouphug::grouphug::grouphug: There aren't enough hugs or words for this. Sorry that I messed up the relationship and didn't specify grandmother instead of mother.

 

It's truly impossible to articulate to those that have never dealt with it, how incidious and cruel NPD's are.

 

Faith

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I will just add, to those who think the person with NOD deserves sympathy forgiveness. Sure. But I can have that from a distance and still protect myself and my precious kids and husband from her. I hate what she did to my mother. I don't really feel a lot for her. She made her life what she did. There is no obligation for me to sacrifice my family's safety for her benefit. I have had an unlisted number since I first moved out. I have changed my email when someone gave it to her. I have never disclosed our address to anyone who might tell her. I just don't need that level of cruelty and hate in my life.

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That example almost sounds like a double bind. I've only read a little about them but some people believe using double binds when communicating with children can lead to schizophrenia later in life. I don't know much about them, though, but the communication can be nonverbal as well as verbal.

 

[

 

This!

 

This is part of what happened even last week in my situation. He came at me verbally in a very rude tone, totally belittled my ability to teach DS, and then said, I'm not attacking you.

Which is when I hung up, and later tried to explain how to properly express concern over DS, and his education. That of course I value his concern :glare: but, we are working very hard in math, every day, he can in fact do multiplication, and single verbal pop quizzes are not the best way to understand where a kid is at in school.

 

His response was, "why are you coming at me like this? I said I wasn't attacking you!!" (always the victim)

 

I pointed out that you don't get to say awful things in an awful tone, then just because you said it wasn't awful have it be so.

 

He then showed blatant misunderstanding of homophones and the usage of apostrophes which sent me over the edge into smug and truly angry.

 

I had to stop any further contact before I totally turned into crazy screaming head spinning level 12 mamma bear. Less then 24 hours later he was trying to push back again.

 

But that is what they do, they push push push push, until you break. Then stand back with that glint in their eyes and make it obvious by their smirk that they did exactly what they set out to do.

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It's truly impossible to articulate to those that have never dealt with it, how incidious and cruel NPD's are.

 

Very well said.

 

If you haven't had the pleasure of dealing w/ someone w/ NPD thank your stars.

 

About a year ago, I asked my NPD mom, "Mom, I have friends who I get along with really well. . . why can't you and I get along?"

 

Her answer? "They don't really know you."

 

Lovely people.

 

Alley

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Very well said.

 

If you haven't had the pleasure of dealing w/ someone w/ NPD thank your stars.

 

About a year ago, I asked my NPD mom, "Mom, I have friends who I get along with really well. . . why can't you and I get along?"

 

Her answer? "They don't really know you."

 

Lovely people.

 

Alley

 

:glare:

 

My xh once, in an effort to deflect an issue, said "You don't have any friends."

 

When countered with names of friends, he was happy to inform me that they weren't my real friends, they didn't like my outspokenness, and that they hung around me simply because of him.

 

Classic.

 

Make me feel crazy then; makes me laugh (and sometimes cry) now.

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I will just add, to those who think the person with NOD deserves sympathy forgiveness. Sure. But I can have that from a distance and still protect myself and my precious kids and husband from her. I hate what she did to my mother. I don't really feel a lot for her. She made her life what she did. There is no obligation for me to sacrifice my family's safety for her benefit. I have had an unlisted number since I first moved out. I have changed my email when someone gave it to her. I have never disclosed our address to anyone who might tell her. I just don't need that level of cruelty and hate in my life.

 

 

:iagree: 100%. You need to protect your family. That is what reasonable, well-adjusted, thinking people do. Dysfunctional people continue to put themselves and their loved ones in harms way. I have long since given up patience and sympathy for my brother continuing to put his daughter in the path of destruction.

 

Forgive yes, allow her to continue to wield her powers of "scorched earth" on myself or my family, NO WAY! Katie, don't let anyone ever convince you that you aren't doing the right thing!

 

Faith

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:glare:

 

My xh once, in an effort to deflect an issue, said "You don't have any friends."

 

When countered with names of friends, he was happy to inform me that they weren't my real friends, they didn't like my outspokenness, and that they hung around me simply because of him.

 

Classic.

 

Make me feel crazy then; makes me laugh (and sometimes cry) now.

 

 

:grouphug::grouphug: Joanne, I am soooo sorry.

 

Thanks for clarifying in that earlier thread.

 

Okay, I really need to get off this thread and go vacuum my couches!!!!!!!!

 

Faith

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OMG. I have never seen that site, but it is like reading my life story. I think I may contact her.
You will probablay also find these helpful. it turned on the light, and helped me finally understand my grandmother - who had been DEAD for 18 years, but I was still dealing with undoing her crap.

Harpy's child (i LOVED the name)

http://daughtersofnarcissisticmothers.com/

 

Well, I can tell you how it plays out w/the NPD in my life.

1) E.V.E.R.Y.T.H.I.N.G. is about them. My successes are all b/c of her, my failures are all b/c I wouldn't listen to her.

2) If she can't figure out a way to take credit for something positive, it doesn't exist.

3) She truly believes she is favoured by God. my grandmother would threaten us that we would go to h*ll if we didn't do what what said, or treat her right.

5) Is never wrong. Has flat out said so.

6) When questioned on her negative acts/behaviour, she claims a) never happened b) I'm remembering wrong c) I'm too sensitive d) she doesn't remember e) if it did happen, then she's sorry I was hurt.

:iagree::iagree::iagree: and if we get upset with how she treats us, WE are the ones who had to apologize. (I was an onrey little thing. I refused. she made darn sure I paid for it too.)

:grouphug:

Mere moments after exchanging vows (I'm talking, had just exited the sanctuary after our vows) MIL grabbed me and burbled, "I'm so glad Wolf married you, now I won't EVER have to be in a nursing home!"

 

Even his getting married was only about her.

dh had to go out of town the monday after we returned from our honeymoon. she tried to convince me he was engaging in hanky panky with coworkers on his out of town trip because "everybody does it". (and to think she didn't watch soaps . . . . ) gee, a week after we got married. she was mad because I married well and didn't give a flying fig what she thought.

 

If you truly knew someone with NPD, it wouldn't seem so vague or fuzzy.

You can't win with someone who has NPD. The person always changes the rules. People in relationships with them are often left full of self-doubt and guilt. It's not fun, and it's definitely different than someone having a bad day and acting like a jerk towards you..

:iagree: you are left thinking YOU are crazy. they would give newspeak ala george orwell a run for his money.

 

While most NPD's would not actually kill another human being in order to get attention, my SIL who has it, is more than willing to hurt herself genuinely (though just enough to get attention but not enough to cause permanent injury) or even fake a suicide attempt (yes, FAKE - as per three psychiatrists that have interviewed her)
"a suicide!" "how?" "the usual way - insufficient poison". gigi (if you haven't seen the movie, it's wonderful)

 

 

Look, even though my mother is gone (7 years ago), I'm still dealing emotionally with it. To this day I still start breathing funny when I hear a belt squeal from a little pickup truck thinking she might be coming for a visit. For years I was sure that I had shell shock (or whatever term they use for that now) - I certainly met with the criteria.

My grandmother was dead 18 YEARS before I learned about NPD - it was like a switch had been flipped. it explained so many things. ( manipulative and malevolent old witch. I consider her my example of an evil person. everything she did was aimed at usurping the agency of others and glorifying herself at our expense.

 

What are narcissists like with babies? Do they have trouble caring for them since it requires them to put another's needs before their own?

 

My grandmother always put them in a playpen because she had "more important" things. to. do.

 

mil has some kind of personality disorder or is very borderline disorer, and she couldn't stand taking care of her own kids, and has shown little interest in grandkids - except from a distance. mil is a whack job that makes you nuts (and since she was a psych nurse there were many family jokes of "don't lose your keys or they won't know you from the patients"), but she is NOT in the same class as my grandmother. mil is nuts and very manipulative (most of the family has solid boundaries with her), but she's positively tame in comparison to my grandmother.

Edited by gardenmom5
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Just to clarify, my mother was raised by the sociopathic NPD person (my grandmother.) My mom was not NPD- she had PTSD and physical disabilities due to my grandmother.

 

I get the no funeral thing. I am not joking the when I get wind of her death I am more likely to crack open a bottle of bubbly and celebrate than mourn. .

:grouphug: same here. grandmama was NPD/BPD. mother was totally beaten down and unable to function. She had her first nervous breakdown when I was 3 1/2(?) people who've never been there have NO clue.

 

dh suggested a grave dance to the tune of "ding dong the wicked witch is dead". granted I kept trying to "forgive" this woman (that included strict boundaries). I didn't have the grave dance as I thought my mother would be hurt. she felt relief when the biddy died. she was evil.

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If it's from a distance, w/out any interaction, go for it.

 

Otherwise, it WILL be used as a tool of manipulation, for them to get whatever they want from you, until you break.

 

:iagree::crying:

 

So, I should feel sorry for my mom because coming to my daughter's funeral would have been too much for her?

 

I should have felt sorry for her when I got pregnant because I was doing this to her again?

 

My mom has a friend who has been her friend since they were 7 years old. This friend is going through severe, severe depression right now and has been suicidal. Because of this, the friend told my mom that the friend could not travel the 1200 miles to see my mom over the summer? My mom's reaction? "I guess she doesn't want to be my friend anymore. I don't know what I did to upset her." No, Mom. Her depression and suicidal thoughts really aren't about you.:001_huh:

 

It honestly crushes me to think that people would not believe what some of us have been through. We've been invalidated enough by the NPDs in our lives. We really don't need any more.:confused:

 

ETA: I actually do feel really badly for my mom. I know she went through some tough things as a kid. But, I can feel sympathy for her without continuing to put myself at risk, KWIM?

Edited by CAMom
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It honestly crushes me to think that people would not believe what some of us have been through. We've been invalidated enough by the NPDs in our lives. We really don't need any more.:confused:

 

 

While only an example from children's literature, I think it is the same general principle as in that Royal Dahl book, Matilda, at play with people's disbelief. In the book the principal of the school gets away with totally insane stuff and abuse and Matilda observes it is because she never does anything by halves. She goes whole hog insane, past the point of her actions being believable. I think when you haven't seen it, it is so outrageous as to sound exaggerated and unbelievable. I mean, try as I might, is there really any way to say "I have a cousin who isn't really my cousin but is instead the child of the woman my grandmother kidnapped from a prostitute, planning to sell to a baby desperate couple but for some reason kept and raised herself" without sounding at least a little insane myself? No one will ever really know the extent of her crimes but my "aunt" is not the only one and she to this day maintains that her "business" was legitimate and sees herself as the hero.

 

Many family counselors and ministers encountering my grandmother would "side" with her because she seems so believable and charming when she needs to be/wants to be. My mother went to a counselor in her early 20s. Her counselor thought that she must be exaggerating or something. Then my grandmother came to a session and my mother"'s counselor, seeing through my grandmother, apologized to my mom for not believing her and told her to stop looking for approval she was never going to get and to stay away from her mom. My mom got away physically a few years later but emotionally she was still always seeking maternal love until she died.

 

It's like poverty. If you haven't been there, you just don't know. And may you remain fortunate enough to never know.

Edited by kijipt
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I've been reading the onemomsbattle blog all day and I just can't stop crying. I've known my dad was narcissistic (seriously, spend more than five minutes with him and he will go on and on and on about how amazing he is) and I've known he was never EVER wrong, but he never seemed to fit the profile that people on here talk about or on the daughters of narcissistic mother site or some of the other sites posted. Maybe because those are about women with NPD? I don't know. But reading that site brings up so many painful memories. The obsession with feigning wealth, the charm (until he no longer needs you or you get on his nerves and then he treats you horribly until you go away), the obsession with weight, the obsession with control, the obsession with pretending you are the perfect family.

 

My mom was diagnosed with leukemia when Pigby was a month old. He was the first grandbaby. My brother and SIL were due a few months later. My mom stayed with me for two weeks to help out, went home and then was diagnosed. So that was all she saw him before she had a serious scare. She started crying in the hospital and when he asked what was wrong, she said she was worried she wouldn't get to see her grandbabies again. Three years later, when he said he wanted a divorce, he brought that up as one of her "flaws." How dare she be afraid to not see grandbabies anymore. She should have been afraid because she wouldn't see him anymore.

 

There's a million more things that I can't get into, but my heart is hurting tonight. Thank you for the solidarity and :grouphug:. It helps to know I'm not crazy.

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ETA: I actually do feel really badly for my mom. I know she went through some tough things as a kid. But, I can feel sympathy for her without continuing to put myself at risk, KWIM?

I can feel sorry for my grandmother going through garbage as a child/teen. but she was an adult when she chose to have a child, and engage in the self-serving behavior she did.

 

some of those who don't understand are willing to hear and learn. some of those who don't understand don't want to understand, but they do enjoy pontificating.

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"a suicide!" "how?" "the usual way - insufficient poison". gigi (if you haven't seen the movie, it's wonderful)

 

QUOTE]

 

 

Let's see..."suicide #1" - empty a bottle of prescription meds in toilet, flush, fail to notice one of them doesn't flush and remains in toilet bowl. Go lay on floor of bedrom, suicide note in hand, call husband on cell phone, breathy, weak..."I'm dying. Goodbye". Medics find her holding her breath trying look unconscience...also find pill floating in toilet. Vital signs fine...medics take in to ER so ER doc an order psyche hold. Fake it or do it for real, you will get a psyche hold if medics come to your house.

 

"suicide #2" - "slit wrists" - except that she didn't slit wrists and used fake blood from a costume shop. Again, found "passed out" this time on kitchen floor trying to look half-dead. Suicide note accusing all of us of not loving her enough or making her a big enough priority in her life.

 

I won't regale you with the others. The last three "attempts" resulted in some small, self-inflicted injuries just to try to get more attention. It's been a long time since she's done this which makes me think she's given up on this line of attention seeking. There has also been a recent lull in her drama which means she's plotting something new. Sad for my brother, but we are done and won't be sucked into it.

 

So yes, that's just exactly what level an NPD will sink to in order to maintain "center of attention." This is why I encourage people to protect themselves. You can imagine the psychological damage this has caused my niece.

 

Faith

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After thinking a lot about this, I am not surprised that there seem to be more people with some type of family member with these problems than would seem reasonable in this forum. I think it can be accounted for by two different social characteristics. It has long been well known that there are two main ways that people survive bad childhoods- one, is barely and those people go on to have many problems, and the other is very successfully, since those people see the problems up close growing up and use those problems as an anti-lesson. So with NPD, we have parents and grandparents who were all about me, and didn't care about relatives at all. Some of those descendants decided that isn't the way to go, I am going to care about my children- hence homeschooling as one avenue for that caring.

 

The second phenomenon we see here is people who marry other people with the same family issues- again, that is very common regardless of the issue. We tend to marry people who mirror us in some way or many ways. For one thing, where did we meet our mate? Then, we bond more with someone with some shared experiences- having shared the trauma of living with one of these people would be a great relief. After all, those who haven't respond sometimes as some have responded in this thread- with amazement and disbelief. I am not saying that a Jack with a NPD mom goes out to find a Jane with an NPD dad. No, more likely it is Jack, who had survived and thrived, meets lovely and thriving Jane and after some time, they both discover they have had similar life experiences.

 

I bet we would find a higher than average amount of children of alcoholics, and children of all types of mental illnesses here. Because survivors of those situations are more likely to be trying to live an alternate life with their own children.

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After thinking a lot about this, I am not surprised that there seem to be more people with some type of family member with these problems than would seem reasonable in this forum. I think it can be accounted for by two different social characteristics. It has long been well known that there are two main ways that people survive bad childhoods- one, is barely and those people go on to have many problems, and the other is very successfully, since those people see the problems up close growing up and use those problems as an anti-lesson. So with NPD, we have parents and grandparents who were all about me, and didn't care about relatives at all. Some of those descendants decided that isn't the way to go, I am going to care about my children- hence homeschooling as one avenue for that caring.

 

The second phenomenon we see here is people who marry other people with the same family issues- again, that is very common regardless of the issue. We tend to marry people who mirror us in some way or many ways. For one thing, where did we meet our mate? Then, we bond more with someone with some shared experiences- having shared the trauma of living with one of these people would be a great relief. After all, those who haven't respond sometimes as some have responded in this thread- with amazement and disbelief. I am not saying that a Jack with a NPD mom goes out to find a Jane with an NPD dad. No, more likely it is Jack, who had survived and thrived, meets lovely and thriving Jane and after some time, they both discover they have had similar life experiences.

 

I bet we would find a higher than average amount of children of alcoholics, and children of all types of mental illnesses here. Because survivors of those situations are more likely to be trying to live an alternate life with their own children.

 

:iagree: Dh and I can relate to each other so well because we both have extenuating family circumstances which made our childhoods difficult, to say the least. We married later in life than most people do for first marriages, and I think it is because neither of us ever found someone who could understand the craziness that is our families. That is our most common ground. We are both adept at dealing with crazies, so it doesn't rock our relationship if one or the other side is going through a crazy phase. We both are oldest children and have that codependent "I am responsible for everyone else" syndrome.

 

And, yes, I think you are right about trying to do things completely differently from our parents. Our kids are certainly leading a much different life than dh or I did. It doesn't surprise me either that there are many homeschooling parents who are trying not to perpetuate the damage inflicted on them.

 

This thread has been heartbreaking to read. I am so sorry for all of you who have experienced this kind of abuse from your parents. I truly know how you feel. I wouldn't wish an NPD parent or spouse on my worst enemy.

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I also think that it is the anonymity of this environment that encourages people to talk about it. You don't hear about it in real life because it hurts, really, really hurts, when IRL friends can't wrap their brains around your reality. So, you don't talk about it. After all, you have a family, a job, connections that need to be maintained with doctors and other professionals in the community, etc. and getting labled "There goes the nut case who says the wildest things about her relative," is not going to help you out in your day-to-day life. So, you keep it under your hat. You suffer in silence because since the bulk of the people you know will label you as the freak show instead of being supportive, you can't afford to talk to anyone.

 

NOBODY IRL knows what we've been through with SIL.

 

That is why the incidence seems higher on this forum than you experience in your neighborhood...we talk about it here because if someone doesn't believe us, so what...that can't hurt us...we don't rub noses with each other IRL.

 

Chances are many posters here do know someone who is suffering or has suffered the antics of an NPD directly or indirectly at some point in life, however, you'll never hear about it.

 

Faith

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I also think that it is the anonymity of this environment that encourages people to talk about it. You don't hear about it in real life because it hurts, really, really hurts, when IRL friends can't wrap their brains around your reality. So, you don't talk about it. After all, you have a family, a job, connections that need to be maintained with doctors and other professionals in the community, etc. and getting labled "There goes the nut case who says the wildest things about her relative," is not going to help you out in your day-to-day life. So, you keep it under your hat. You suffer in silence because since the bulk of the people you know will label you as the freak show instead of being supportive, you can't afford to talk to anyone.

 

NOBODY IRL knows what we've been through with SIL.

 

That is why the incidence seems higher on this forum than you experience in your neighborhood...we talk about it here because if someone doesn't believe us, so what...that can't hurt us...we don't rub noses with each other IRL.

 

Chances are many posters here do know someone who is suffering or has suffered the antics of an NPD directly or indirectly at some point in life, however, you'll never hear about it.

 

Faith

 

I think this is very true. Due to the sheer crazy making nature of the experience and the ultra weird behavior of the person with NPD, many many people just don't really believe you, or don't get it at all.

 

Plus for me, it is so painful, enough to make physically ill, to speak of it, that I reserve it for when I know someone really "gets" it. Or when I really need to work through something/ get something off my chest.

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Some of those descendants decided that isn't the way to go, I am going to care about my children- hence homeschooling as one avenue for that caring.

 

 

This is definitely true with my dh and I. Dh's mom is full blown NPD (along with the threats of killing herself when she feels she is loosing her power over someone) as is his youngest sister. He had a horrid childhood and we have watched for years the damage his younger sister is causing to her own children. He and I made a verbal vow to each other that we would never, never subject our children to the type of pain NPDs inflict on their offspring. So much of the way he interacts and raises our children has been shaped by the way he was raised. Our children, while not being raised to think they are the center of the universe, are the most important things in our lives right now and are treated with consistency, respect, and unconditional love. Three things he never received as a child. He never knew where he stood, there was zero respect, and there were always strings attached to any display of love his mom gave to him. Thankfully though, he has been able to rise above it all and has become an excellent father despite (or maybe because of) his mother. I think he may have been a more complacent, un-involved parent (like his father) had he not had his mom and sister exhibit the wrong way to parent.

 

For anyone who thinks NPDs are just quirky or that these stories are exaggerated...try telling a 46 year old, Air Force vet, father of 5, security clearance holding man that it couldn't have been that bad, when he gets teary eyed thinking of the vileness he endured as a child AND ADULT by the hands of his own mother.

Edited by 5LittleMonkeys
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I also think that it is the anonymity of this environment that encourages people to talk about it. You don't hear about it in real life because it hurts, really, really hurts, when IRL friends can't wrap their brains around your reality. So, you don't talk about it. After all, you have a family, a job, connections that need to be maintained with doctors and other professionals in the community, etc. and getting labled "There goes the nut case who says the wildest things about her relative," is not going to help you out in your day-to-day life. So, you keep it under your hat. You suffer in silence because since the bulk of the people you know will label you as the freak show instead of being supportive, you can't afford to talk to anyone.

 

NOBODY IRL knows what we've been through with SIL.

 

That is why the incidence seems higher on this forum than you experience in your neighborhood...we talk about it here because if someone doesn't believe us, so what...that can't hurt us...we don't rub noses with each other IRL.

 

Chances are many posters here do know someone who is suffering or has suffered the antics of an NPD directly or indirectly at some point in life, however, you'll never hear about it.

 

Faith

Heck yes.

 

Even here, when I explained my mother had more traits than needed to be dx'd as AsPD, and I was cutting contact, there were ppl telling me I needed to forgive, have grace, she was my mother, only one I have, honour thy mother, etc.

 

It's worse irl.

 

If ppl haven't experienced it, they truly, TRULY don't get it. Like trying to explain colours to someone whose been blind since birth. They have a truly hard core disbelief that a parent could do such things to a child. That even when that child grows up, the parent still strives for power and control and has no boundaries, no lengths they WON'T go to to achieve that.

 

And if I hear, just one more time, "Be the bigger person" or, "Oh, and you're so perfect that you can demand perfection from others?" I will scream.

 

This isn't about demanding a parent be some unattainable level of perfection. It's about not being a barrel of toxic waste that feeds off negative emotions, who intentionally inflicts pain on others and revels in it.

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And it's the glee, the pure joy that they display at other people's pain that is the most toxic thing of all. It's evil. Truly evil and I'm not afraid to say it. There is something that is pure wickedness about reveling in destroying other people, in wrecking children, in causing teens to want to commit suicide just to get away from the NPD'er, lives fractured, hearts virtually unmendable, ....

 

God does not honor evil and neither will I. As a matter of fact, by cutting off the NPD person, I do more to honor them. I give them one less family to victimize. As has been pointed out by three psychiatrists, the only way that an NPD has a ghost of chance of changing and becoming a decent human is IF they hit rock bottom. IF all of their options are removed. IF they have no resources left. So, I'll honor them by not contributing to their problems and enabling their horrid actions. I honor my husband and my children by not making them human sacrifices for the monster. I honor my children by not making them a part of her drama, forcing them to deal with the fall out of her meltdowns, her attempted "suicides", her rantings, screaming, throwing glassware and ceramics at our heads, etc.

 

IMP, if anyone quotes the "honor thy father and mother" thing at you, ask them this..."If your parents were a child predators, would you 'honor' them by giving them access to your children?" I'll bet the answer is NO. Follow up with this, "My parent is a child predator. Not a s*xual one, but a true predator nonetheless, and I have to treat that person the same way I would the pervert down the street."

 

Faith

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And it's the glee, the pure joy that they display at other people's pain that is the most toxic thing of all. It's evil. Truly evil and I'm not afraid to say it. There is something that is pure wickedness about reveling in destroying other people, in wrecking children, in causing teens to want to commit suicide just to get away from the NPD'er, lives fractured, hearts virtually unmendable, ....

 

God does not honor evil and neither will I. As a matter of fact, by cutting off the NPD person, I do more to honor them. I give them one less family to victimize. As has been pointed out by three psychiatrists, the only way that an NPD has a ghost of chance of changing and becoming a decent human is IF they hit rock bottom. IF all of their options are removed. IF they have no resources left. So, I'll honor them by not contributing to their problems and enabling their horrid actions. I honor my husband and my children by not making them human sacrifices for the monster. I honor my children by not making them a part of her drama, forcing them to deal with the fall out of her meltdowns, her attempted "suicides", her rantings, screaming, throwing glassware and ceramics at our heads, etc.

 

IMP, if anyone quotes the "honor thy father and mother" thing at you, ask them this..."If your parents were a child predators, would you 'honor' them by giving them access to your children?" I'll bet the answer is NO. Follow up with this, "My parent is a child predator. Not a s*xual one, but a true predator nonetheless, and I have to treat that person the same way I would the pervert down the street."

 

Faith

Ah, the glee. Just thinking about that look on my mother/MIL's face is enough to get my gut churning.

 

I've come to start telling ppl that I am honouring my mother by not allowing her to sin against me. It's all I can do, since no matter what else I tried, she continued to speak in anger, hate, and purposefully hurt me.

 

They don't seem to get it, but at least putting it in the same language allows them to nod and shut up about it.

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I also think that it is the anonymity of this environment that encourages people to talk about it. You don't hear about it in real life because it hurts, really, really hurts, when IRL friends can't wrap their brains around your reality. So, you don't talk about it. After all, you have a family, a job, connections that need to be maintained with doctors and other professionals in the community, etc. and getting labled "There goes the nut case who says the wildest things about her relative," is not going to help you out in your day-to-day life. So, you keep it under your hat. You suffer in silence because since the bulk of the people you know will label you as the freak show instead of being supportive, you can't afford to talk to anyone.

 

NOBODY IRL knows what we've been through with SIL.

 

That is why the incidence seems higher on this forum than you experience in your neighborhood...we talk about it here because if someone doesn't believe us, so what...that can't hurt us...we don't rub noses with each other IRL.

 

Chances are many posters here do know someone who is suffering or has suffered the antics of an NPD directly or indirectly at some point in life, however, you'll never hear about it.

 

Faith

 

YES, Faith, nicely said. Also, NPD people are incredibly charming, "good natured," wonderful people. . . to the outside world. Like pedophiles, they carefully craft a public demeanor that is just so likable and good hearted. My parents come across as funny, interested in others, easy to hang out with, easy to play cards with etc. etc.

 

It's only behind closed doors that my mom and dad would say horrific things. And, my dad, was also violent. But both were bitingly mean and critical.

 

So, my bet is there are many, many, many more NPD people in the world, but how would you count them up? Too many of them hide in plain site by just being the nicest folk you could ever want to meet. :glare:

 

I don't think the statistics of how many NPD people are out there amount to anything.

 

Alley

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IMP, if anyone quotes the "honor thy father and mother" thing at you, ask them this..."If your parents were a child predators, would you 'honor' them by giving them access to your children?" I'll bet the answer is NO. Follow up with this, "My parent is a child predator. Not a s*xual one, but a true predator nonetheless, and I have to treat that person the same way I would the pervert down the street."

 

Faith

 

I have long wrestled with the practical issue of how I can actively honor my parents while not allowing them any contact. I also agree strongly that one way to honor them is by removing the opportunity to abuse me and my family.

 

If they were alcoholics I wouldn't buy them alcohol, and no one would disagree with that decision.

 

In the same way, since they are abusers of people, I'm not going to supply them with people to abuse. They are free to go out and find their own people to abuse, but I'm not helping them by making it easier for them to do so.

 

I also think it's good to compare it to the relationship between David and King Saul. David managed to honor Saul while at the same time staying far away from him (Saul wanted to kill him, after all). However, when David had the opportunity to kill Saul, he did not. He respected the role of king that God had for Saul at that time and he did not seek to injure Saul. God did take care of the situation, and in the meantime, we got some awesome Psalms. ;)

 

I think we're to do the same - keep safe, well out of the reach of these toxic people, yet not seek to harm them in return.

 

I try to honor my parents by:

 

Not continuing the cycle of abuse

Not seeking revenge

Trying not to speak ill of them (I don't always succeed at that)

Keeping their targets (my family) away from them

Praying for them

 

Luke 17:3 ministries has some good scripture references and articles on this topic.

 

www.luke173ministries.org

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Okay, in light of recent posts on this thread, I am wondering......

 

Is it possible for a person to have NPD without exhibiting signs of glee or being charming to others?

 

I know someone with NPDish behaviors, but she doesn't seem to exhibit the glee being described. Also doesn't seek out social situations in which to be charming. Really prefers to stay home and causes all the troubles over family events/relationships. Could she still be NPD, or more likely something else?

 

ANy opinions?

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Okay, in light of recent posts on this thread, I am wondering......

 

Is it possible for a person to have NPD without exhibiting signs of glee or being charming to others?

 

I know someone with NPDish behaviors, but she doesn't seem to exhibit the glee being described. Also doesn't seek out social situations in which to be charming. Really prefers to stay home and causes all the troubles over family events/relationships. Could she still be NPD, or more likely something else?

 

ANy opinions?

 

She could still have NPD, or it could be a different PD. Have you checked out Light's House? http://lightshouse.org/ The links at the top will kind of walk you through the different PDs.

Edited by sweetbasil
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Heck yes.

 

Even here, when I explained my mother had more traits than needed to be dx'd as AsPD, and I was cutting contact, there were ppl telling me I needed to forgive, have grace, she was my mother, only one I have, honour thy mother, etc.

 

It's worse irl.

 

If ppl haven't experienced it, they truly, TRULY don't get it. Like trying to explain colours to someone whose been blind since birth. They have a truly hard core disbelief that a parent could do such things to a child. That even when that child grows up, the parent still strives for power and control and has no boundaries, no lengths they WON'T go to to achieve that.

 

And if I hear, just one more time, "Be the bigger person" or, "Oh, and you're so perfect that you can demand perfection from others?" I will scream.

 

This isn't about demanding a parent be some unattainable level of perfection. It's about not being a barrel of toxic waste that feeds off negative emotions, who intentionally inflicts pain on others and revels in it.

 

Thank you for posting this!!

 

If you've been raised by relatively normal parents, you just can't understand what it's like for those of us with a NPD parent. I wrote out two of the less extreme examples that I endured as a child, but I could tell you things that would disgust and horrify you. I don't look for sympathy or to assign blame for what we endured. It's just a fact of how our lives were. I was able to forgive her after years of therapy.

 

I honor my mother by cutting her out of my life. Trust me, if she was IN my life, there would be NO honoring at all. I am more concerned with protecting the souls of my children from her.

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Okay, in light of recent posts on this thread, I am wondering......

 

Is it possible for a person to have NPD without exhibiting signs of glee or being charming to others?

 

I know someone with NPDish behaviors, but she doesn't seem to exhibit the glee being described. Also doesn't seek out social situations in which to be charming. Really prefers to stay home and causes all the troubles over family events/relationships. Could she still be NPD, or more likely something else?

 

ANy opinions?

entirely possible.

 

NPD doesn't present the same way in every person.

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After thinking a lot about this, I am not surprised that there seem to be more people with some type of family member with these problems than would seem reasonable in this forum. I think it can be accounted for by two different social characteristics. It has long been well known that there are two main ways that people survive bad childhoods- one, is barely and those people go on to have many problems, and the other is very successfully, since those people see the problems up close growing up and use those problems as an anti-lesson. So with NPD, we have parents and grandparents who were all about me, and didn't care about relatives at all. Some of those descendants decided that isn't the way to go, I am going to care about my children- hence homeschooling as one avenue for that caring.

 

The second phenomenon we see here is people who marry other people with the same family issues- again, that is very common regardless of the issue. We tend to marry people who mirror us in some way or many ways. For one thing, where did we meet our mate? Then, we bond more with someone with some shared experiences- having shared the trauma of living with one of these people would be a great relief. After all, those who haven't respond sometimes as some have responded in this thread- with amazement and disbelief. I am not saying that a Jack with a NPD mom goes out to find a Jane with an NPD dad. No, more likely it is Jack, who had survived and thrived, meets lovely and thriving Jane and after some time, they both discover they have had similar life experiences.

 

I bet we would find a higher than average amount of children of alcoholics, and children of all types of mental illnesses here. Because survivors of those situations are more likely to be trying to live an alternate life with their own children.

 

I was thinking about this too and came to a similar conclusion.

 

I am thankful to the ladies here who have helped me see the truth about my mom. And it is so true that unless you've lived it, you have no clue. There are so many things that I thought were "normal" that are definitely not.

 

I have to say that I don't feel "sorry" for my mother one bit. She was an adult and perfectly capable of treating me in a humane manner; she just didn't. I have problems of my own, yet every day I wake up and do my absolute best with the girls. That wasn't done for me.

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I was thinking about this too and came to a similar conclusion.

 

I am thankful to the ladies here who have helped me see the truth about my mom. And it is so true that unless you've lived it, you have no clue. There are so many things that I thought were "normal" that are definitely not.

 

I have to say that I don't feel "sorry" for my mother one bit. She was an adult and perfectly capable of treating me in a humane manner; she just didn't. I have problems of my own, yet every day I wake up and do my absolute best with the girls. That wasn't done for me.

:iagree:

And that's part of the issue I deal w/too. Since I firmly believe that *both* my mother and MIL have NPD (AsPD as well, for my mother) It's been asked why I can't be more forgiving, since it's a persnonality disorder, and therefore, presumably they are incapable of controling their behaviour.

 

Bullhonky, says I.

 

Both my mother and MIL are perfectly capable of behaving appropriately in public. Neither would ever DREAM of spewing their venom in front of witnesses. Neither attacks 'friends' the way they do family. Sure, sooner or later they push ppl away w/a slow building of antics, but neither of them lets forth the sheer raging tantrum that they do on family members on ppl outside the 'safe zone' that they've taught to accept their negative behaviours.

 

That speaks of control and choice.

 

If they can behave themselves for some ppl, they COULD behave themselves around family. They choose NOT to do so.

 

It's the element of choice involved that is the hardest to deal w/, the reality that they COULD treat you better, but simply don't consider you important enough to give that level of respect to.

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There are nearly 60K members on this board. We have maybe what, 40 ppl who think their parent exhibits NPD symptoms? I think it's just a matter of the fact that we're talking about it and what's odd tends to stand out.

 

I also think the internet is responsible -- I discovered NPD by googling about a parent stealing and lying. LOL. Otherwise I wouldn't have known about it. Online is the only place most of can go to find people who understand and empathize.

 

I am blessed to have one friend IRL who has a grandparent and a sibling with NPD symptoms, so she completely "gets" it. Her stories are nearly identical. No one else I know could even comprehend it.

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:iagree:

 

My own mother has often told me about how she tried to abort me when she found out she was pregnant with me. How I was the "ugliest baby she had ever seen" when I was born. In front of people though, she appeared to be a devoted young mother (as told to me by my grandparents), but when no one was looking, she had nothing to do with me (as my father found out one day).

 

She held this pattern of loving babies until they were old enough to talk. I saw time and time again how she repeated this pattern with my siblings.

 

Another curious thing she did was to have affairs with other men right after having her babies. She took me with her to 'hook up' on a few of these occasions. I was too young to understand what was really going on at the time. She divorced my father when I was 4 years old....right after she gave birth to my brother, and my dad caught her with another man in the house....yet, SHE was the victim in that whole thing (and every other divorce she had due to her infidelity).

 

My mother used to like to "play practical jokes" on me throughout my childhood. One incident in particular happened when I was in 7th grade. I had forgotten my flute at home and left a voice mail to ask her if she could bring it to me at school. A couple of hours later, I get pulled from class for a phone call. My mother, without missing a beat says, "your father has died." I recall feeling like I was going to faint instantly. Then she says, "just kidding! hahahaha I'll be there in a few minutes with your flute."

 

Those are the kinds of things that kids of NPD live with. I cut her out of my life over a decade ago, and I don't regret it at all. In addition to NPD, she is bi-polar, a drug addict, and an alcoholic. She was officially diagnosed with paranoid schitzophrenia about 6 years ago. I was not surprised to learn this.

 

 

 

Oh yes, my mother told me repeatedly that they considered an abortion. Lovely for a child to hear, right?

 

She works in a daycare with small children. Of course they can't talk back to her. Because you're all right, she can't stand for anyone to oppose her, ever. My sister takes what she dishes out and swallows every bit of it, so she's the golden child. Seriously, she's 25 and signs her meager paychecks over to my mom. That's the kind of thing my mom likes. Yet she brought up to me the fact that I "abandoned" her 15 years ago by moving in with my dad - because she was treating me so badly. I dared to escape, and she couldn't let that happen.

 

She is so self involved that she never once came to see the girls. We had to bring them to her, yes, bring an infant and two small children 8 hours away to cater to her whims. She has enough money and is capable of driving hours away to SHOP, but she couldn't do this for granddaughters that she was "so happy" to have.

 

When I was hospitalized for a month after nearly bleeding out? Please. She barely blinked. Shoot, she never even sent a card.

 

I could go on for days. Every one of my friends always thought that she was the "cool mom." So of course no one would ever believe that she was so awful to me. And there was all kinds of other inappropriateness going on, it turns my stomach.

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I also think that it is the anonymity of this environment that encourages people to talk about it. You don't hear about it in real life because it hurts, really, really hurts, when IRL friends can't wrap their brains around your reality. So, you don't talk about it. After all, you have a family, a job, connections that need to be maintained with doctors and other professionals in the community, etc. and getting labled "There goes the nut case who says the wildest things about her relative," is not going to help you out in your day-to-day life. So, you keep it under your hat. You suffer in silence because since the bulk of the people you know will label you as the freak show instead of being supportive, you can't afford to talk to anyone.

 

NOBODY IRL knows what we've been through with SIL.

 

That is why the incidence seems higher on this forum than you experience in your neighborhood...we talk about it here because if someone doesn't believe us, so what...that can't hurt us...we don't rub noses with each other IRL.

 

Chances are many posters here do know someone who is suffering or has suffered the antics of an NPD directly or indirectly at some point in life, however, you'll never hear about it.

 

Faith

 

Yes this. My mother was NPD - the quiet, ignoring kind and I've never spilled our garbage on FB or on my blog. She passed away in July, and I got up to speak about her and no, no mention of her NPD and only a passing allusion to her alcoholism. I was desperate for everyone to know that she wasn't always so horrid/mean. I spoke about the good memories I had of her- which sadly were all from age 10 or so on down... but yeah, I agree- we don't talk about the crazy/horrid things in our lives, we get through them and don't really want to dwell on them.

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Yes this. My mother was NPD - the quiet, ignoring kind and I've never spilled our garbage on FB or on my blog. She passed away in July, and I got up to speak about her and no, no mention of her NPD and only a passing allusion to her alcoholism. I was desperate for everyone to know that she wasn't always so horrid/mean. I spoke about the good memories I had of her- which sadly were all from age 10 or so on down... but yeah, I agree- we don't talk about the crazy/horrid things in our lives, we get through them and don't really want to dwell on them.

I think there's another reason, a deeper, darker one...not necc for you, Jen, but one I've found to be true in many of the ppl I talk to about childhood abuse, NPD or not.

 

We, the victims of the abusers, believe it to be OUR fault.

 

This seems to hold esp true when personality disorders, ie NPD are involved.

 

It seems a fairly common modus operandi when dealing w/a parent w/NPD for them to blame their victim for everything. It's not the parent's fault that the victim is stupid, fat, clumsy, ugly. If the victim was a better behaved child, the parent would love them, wouldn't get so angry, wouldn't have to be so abusive.

 

Esp in terms of dealing w/NPD, where gaslighting, lying and denial are standard, to parentify children, make young children responsible for the emotional (and indeed, sometimes physical health) of the parent, the child is taught that it is, indeed, all their responsibility/fault.

 

When you're programmed that way from your earliest memories, there's a sense of lingering shame for many, many ppl, in acknowledging the reality of their experiences.

 

Add in on top of that society's insistance on revering motherhood, that all mothers are supposed to be kind, loving, supportive, and saying that YOURS wasn't is enough to get yourself viewed w/suspicion. ALL mothers are to be wonderful, so then there's the suspicion that YOU are the ungrateful one, that YOU are being impossible, that YOU aren't being forgiving and holding a grudge, and don't forget the ever popular, "You only get ONE mother!"

 

To the last, I say, Thank God. I couldn't survive another.

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Someone on here was suggesting that maybe everyone here is making things up because how could it be that so many here have someone in their life like this.

 

On the other thread, I questioned why there seems to be such a high prevalence of posters who know people affected by NPD despite the low percentage reported to be present in the general population. I didn't say or even imply that I think everyone here is making things up. I don't know if you were referring to me or not, but I just wanted to clarify. I am very sorry for the horrible things that too many people here have had to endure from the people who should be their biggest protectors and encouragers.

Edited by WordGirl
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I think there's another reason, a deeper, darker one...not necc for you, Jen, but one I've found to be true in many of the ppl I talk to about childhood abuse, NPD or not.

 

We, the victims of the abusers, believe it to be OUR fault.

 

This seems to hold esp true when personality disorders, ie NPD are involved.

 

It seems a fairly common modus operandi when dealing w/a parent w/NPD for them to blame their victim for everything. It's not the parent's fault that the victim is stupid, fat, clumsy, ugly. If the victim was a better behaved child, the parent would love them, wouldn't get so angry, wouldn't have to be so abusive.

 

Esp in terms of dealing w/NPD, where gaslighting, lying and denial are standard, to parentify children, make young children responsible for the emotional (and indeed, sometimes physical health) of the parent, the child is taught that it is, indeed, all their responsibility/fault.

 

When you're programmed that way from your earliest memories, there's a sense of lingering shame for many, many ppl, in acknowledging the reality of their experiences.

 

Add in on top of that society's insistance on revering motherhood, that all mothers are supposed to be kind, loving, supportive, and saying that YOURS wasn't is enough to get yourself viewed w/suspicion. ALL mothers are to be wonderful, so then there's the suspicion that YOU are the ungrateful one, that YOU are being impossible, that YOU aren't being forgiving and holding a grudge, and don't forget the ever popular, "You only get ONE mother!"

 

To the last, I say, Thank God. I couldn't survive another.

 

:iagree: I've been quiet on this thread, but I just had to come in and agree 100% with what Imp said.

 

Victims just cannot talk about this crap IRL. No one believed my "cool" mom would ever do/say the things she did to me. She was such a "good Christian" at church. She put on a great public face. At home, she was just...nightmarish. She still is. I've shared a bit about her here, and so many stories on this thread are similar to my experiences, so I won't go into everything. Let's just cover the last couple of months.

 

She kicked my full-ride-scholarship getting, two-job-working, has-her-act-together sister out of the house, basically because this sister doesn't put up with her crap. Mother called her every name in the book, told sis she would never be as good of a mother as Mom was, called her a slut, told her she was as worthless as I was, etc.. However, when sis went back to school, mom posted on FB about how much she was going to miss my sis, crying and everything. Typical behavior.

 

My dad, a former alcoholic who never accepts responsibility for anything, had a bad reaction to Prednisone. Mom was ready to leave him (again) because she was tired of taking care of people. Umm, I raised my 2 sisters and myself. I was her parent.

 

She has what I like to call "martyr syndrome." Everything is worse for her. She is the most noble, self-sacrificing person EVER!!! So now that my dad is out of the hospital, she is acting like the devoted, long-suffering little wife. Yet to me, all she does is complain about how inconvenienced she is because she has to take care of him.

 

Everything this woman says and does is calculated. And the outright lies! To your face!!! She is hateful, abusive, manipulative, and downright destructive, but only to those who defy her. She claims to hate drama, yet she always seems to cause it.

 

Yet everything wrong in her life is somehow my fault:glare:. My dad getting sick? Because I didn't call him. She's poor? Because she got knocked up with me. She's overweight? My fault. My middle sister got pregnant for a loser? My fault. Youngest sister being "disrespectful"? Because of me. CPS being called because I showed up at school with a black eye and busted lip? I should have lied for them. At first I felt guilty, but then I thought "D@mn I'm awesome!" I can control things from hundreds of miles away!!!

 

So victims just don't talk about it. No one believes us. And we are lead to believe it's all our fault, especially when the NPD person is a parent.

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I think there's another reason, a deeper, darker one...not necc for you, Jen, but one I've found to be true in many of the ppl I talk to about childhood abuse, NPD or not.

 

We, the victims of the abusers, believe it to be OUR fault.

 

This seems to hold esp true when personality disorders, ie NPD are involved.

 

It seems a fairly common modus operandi when dealing w/a parent w/NPD for them to blame their victim for everything. It's not the parent's fault that the victim is stupid, fat, clumsy, ugly. If the victim was a better behaved child, the parent would love them, wouldn't get so angry, wouldn't have to be so abusive.

 

Esp in terms of dealing w/NPD, where gaslighting, lying and denial are standard, to parentify children, make young children responsible for the emotional (and indeed, sometimes physical health) of the parent, the child is taught that it is, indeed, all their responsibility/fault.

 

When you're programmed that way from your earliest memories, there's a sense of lingering shame for many, many ppl, in acknowledging the reality of their experiences.

 

Add in on top of that society's insistance on revering motherhood, that all mothers are supposed to be kind, loving, supportive, and saying that YOURS wasn't is enough to get yourself viewed w/suspicion. ALL mothers are to be wonderful, so then there's the suspicion that YOU are the ungrateful one, that YOU are being impossible, that YOU aren't being forgiving and holding a grudge, and don't forget the ever popular, "You only get ONE mother!"

 

To the last, I say, Thank God. I couldn't survive another.

 

:grouphug:

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Are there varying degrees of NPD or is one of the trademarks being incessantly mean? My parents have never been AS mean as many of the stories here. They do have some tender empathy and would never intentionally scare me or anyone, that kind of thing. But things have always, always been all about them. My mom definitely does the gaslighting, I have been called names, told I was an exceptionally difficult child, things like that.

 

Although honestly, now that I do have a difficult child, if she grows up to blame me for everything like I have done with my mom I will be tempted to tell her she was really difficult. :tongue_smilie::/ I pray our dynamics are better than my dynamics with my parents have been though.

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I think there's another reason, a deeper, darker one...not necc for you, Jen, but one I've found to be true in many of the ppl I talk to about childhood abuse, NPD or not.

 

We, the victims of the abusers, believe it to be OUR fault.

 

This seems to hold esp true when personality disorders, ie NPD are involved.

 

It seems a fairly common modus operandi when dealing w/a parent w/NPD for them to blame their victim for everything. It's not the parent's fault that the victim is stupid, fat, clumsy, ugly. If the victim was a better behaved child, the parent would love them, wouldn't get so angry, wouldn't have to be so abusive.

 

Esp in terms of dealing w/NPD, where gaslighting, lying and denial are standard, to parentify children, make young children responsible for the emotional (and indeed, sometimes physical health) of the parent, the child is taught that it is, indeed, all their responsibility/fault.

 

When you're programmed that way from your earliest memories, there's a sense of lingering shame for many, many ppl, in acknowledging the reality of their experiences.

 

Add in on top of that society's insistance on revering motherhood, that all mothers are supposed to be kind, loving, supportive, and saying that YOURS wasn't is enough to get yourself viewed w/suspicion. ALL mothers are to be wonderful, so then there's the suspicion that YOU are the ungrateful one, that YOU are being impossible, that YOU aren't being forgiving and holding a grudge, and don't forget the ever popular, "You only get ONE mother!"

 

To the last, I say, Thank God. I couldn't survive another.

 

 

This is so, so, so, SO accurate.

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Are there varying degrees of NPD or is one of the trademarks being incessantly mean? My parents have never been AS mean as many of the stories here. They do have some tender empathy and would never intentionally scare me or anyone, that kind of thing. But things have always, always been all about them. My mom definitely does the gaslighting, I have been called names, told I was an exceptionally difficult child, things like that.

 

Although honestly, now that I do have a difficult child, if she grows up to blame me for everything like I have done with my mom I will be tempted to tell her she was really difficult. :tongue_smilie::/ I pray our dynamics are better than my dynamics with my parents have been though.

Yes, there are varying degrees.

 

There are even different presentations, esp when considering parents. Three main ones that I've heard of are engulfing, ignoring, and malignant.

 

Engulfers are the ones that have to be involved in every aspect of their kid's life. The kid showing any independance at all is a huge, vicious threat to the N. Typically, these are the ones that will threaten suicide if the kid wants to move out, get married, etc.

 

Ignoring ones are just that. The kid doesn't exist unless they're doing something that the N can take credit for.

 

Malignant...well, that term is pretty self explanatory too. They're the ones that deliberately set out to cause pain, anger, hurt and seem to feed off of it.

 

There are some Ns that have a blend of the 3, but often, one trait that tends to edge out the others just a wee bit to take first place.

 

My MIL, for example, varies btwn engulf and ignore.

 

My mother, ignore and malignant...yet she'd be uber ticked off if she's not included in any life decisions, even though she's never shown the slightest interest in them. Anything can and would give her an excuse to attack.

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And it's the glee, the pure joy that they display at other people's pain that is the most toxic thing of all. It's evil. Truly evil and I'm not afraid to say it. There is something that is pure wickedness about reveling in destroying other people, Faith

 

I cringed when I read this this morning; and I cringe now. "My" NPD had this........expression on his face when he perpetrated some of the most sick verbal gyrations. Just the way he held his mouth.

 

Eerily, one of the other ex wives talked about the same "look."

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Yes, there are varying degrees.

 

There are even different presentations, esp when considering parents. Three main ones that I've heard of are engulfing, ignoring, and malignant.

 

Engulfers are the ones that have to be involved in every aspect of their kid's life. The kid showing any independance at all is a huge, vicious threat to the N. Typically, these are the ones that will threaten suicide if the kid wants to move out, get married, etc.

 

Ignoring ones are just that. The kid doesn't exist unless they're doing something that the N can take credit for.

 

Malignant...well, that term is pretty self explanatory too. They're the ones that deliberately set out to cause pain, anger, hurt and seem to feed off of it.

 

There are some Ns that have a blend of the 3, but often, one trait that tends to edge out the others just a wee bit to take first place.

 

My MIL, for example, varies btwn engulf and ignore.

 

My mother, ignore and malignant...yet she'd be uber ticked off if she's not included in any life decisions, even though she's never shown the slightest interest in them. Anything can and would give her an excuse to attack.

 

Mine waffles between engulfing and ignoring, as well. When she has urge to be involved, she tries to micromanaged every aspect your life, throws tantrums and plays the martyr when you don't go along with her plans for you, etc. As soon as you can't be managed, or your life is such that you actually may need some support, she is nowhere to be found.

 

Some examples from my own (adult) life:

 

When my (now) husband moved to the other side of the state, she sold her house and followed us, and told everyone - including us - that we begged her to (lie). (She was following my eldest daughter, who she had decided was "hers") She thus commenced trying to "fix" everything about our house and our lives, plan our wedding... After the wedding, she announces that I "have a new family now" so she'll just muddle through the holidays aaaaaaall alone (martyr).

 

When I was pregnant with B, I had horrible back pain that kept me up all night. I was exhausted and strung out, and was still working full time. She wanted me to go doorknob shopping with her, an hour away. When I said no, I just needed to rest, she had a fit, called me later to see if I had "calmed down", then told me I'm bipolar. And she knows this because an aunt (by marriage) is bipolar (it runs in families, you know!) and part of it is thinking you don't need sleep, so... I need to get on some medication so I can be normal. A trip to the chiropractor got rid of the back pain so I could sleep, but she has spent the past several years telling people I'm mentally ill and unmedicated.

 

She demanded, wheedled, cried to get me to let her watch the girls (A around 12, B around 2) on days where I had to work on site with a client and my husband was also working, so I would call her and she would be SO pleased, tell me her schedule was completely clear that day, yadda, yadda. The night before I dropped them off, she would call to tell me that she had to work in the afternoon, but she would go ahead and inconvenience the poor agent stuck on the desk for a few more hours, for me, but A would need to come directly to her house to collect B after school. Directly! She should not even drop her books at home! Aaaaaand then I would call to check in and no one would be home at my house, so I'd call her house and she and the girls would be having a "wonderful" time. What about her desk duty? Well, Sue would be fine. She might even get some leads ("you should see her... Looks so haggard... You'd never believe she's close to my age, looks SO much older...").

 

When I was pregnant with the boys and on bed rest while my OB and perinatologist tried to decide whether to take more aggressive measures to keep them in as long as possible (they did not, and the boys went full term), she demanded my husband take me out dancing for my birthday. I hate going dancing (the noise, the crowds, I don't dance) and, uh, we were trying to prevent our babies from being born before 24 weeks. Her answer: "well, surely they'll let her out for one night. It's her BIRTHDAY!" And since other people were controlling whether I could do things, she moved out of state, and had to take my eldest for a couple of weeks to help her set up her new house. (Because, really, how unfair was A's life that she should have to stay home and be Cinderella?)

 

I occasionally have that "she's not that bad" thought (because, truly, on the scale of what others have been through, she is not), but I have now learned to squash it. She is bad enough and undermines, grooms and tears down my children, gaslights, and generally makes our lives miserable if I even so much crack the door open. So that door stays firmly shut.

 

And, just in case my resolve falters, I recently received a letter from her, basically telling me to "be the bigger person", outlining what a big person she is for forgiving and looking past my grandmother being different from her, and caring for her in her last years. (My aunt - and later I, with my aunt - cared for her in her las weeks. My mother had to work, and had to take time for herself, as a caretaker.) My grandmother was very different from her, that is true. What she wasn't was guilty of devaluing and damaging everyone around her.

 

Wow. That was quite a dump. I really only started out to agree with Imp. ;)

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I haven't posted at all on this thread, but I'd like to say thank you to everyone who's shared very difficult stories and emotions, you've helped me enormously. Even when you know you've been treated horribly by a parent, there still remains that element of self-doubt when that parent presents such a sunny, friendly face to the rest of the world. Reading through this thread has helped me feel so much stronger.

 

:grouphug:

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:grouphug:MyCrazyHouse

I haven't posted at all on this thread, but I'd like to say thank you to everyone who's shared very difficult stories and emotions, you've helped me enormously. Even when you know you've been treated horribly by a parent, there still remains that element of self-doubt when that parent presents such a sunny, friendly face to the rest of the world. Reading through this thread has helped me feel so much stronger.

 

:grouphug:

Honestly, it's when they're not blatantly over the top that I think it's the hardest. I mean, my mother was way, WAY over the top, and it's taken me until a cpl of months ago to cut off contact...something I should have done decade or 2 ago.

 

There's so much pressure to forgive and forget, to deny the reality...I mean, who wants to admit that their mother dislikes them so? And what's that say about you as a person when your own mother seems to enjoy your pain, and deliberately sets out to cause it? How do you explain the little things...the tone of voice that sends chills down your spine, the digs that to the casual observer sound like an innocent comment, but b/c of the history, the set of the jaw, the look in the eye you know you've just been knifed in the gut?

 

It's like nailing Jello to a tree, trying to get other ppl to understand the subtlety of their abuse in public, or the true nastiness that occurs behind closed doors.

 

It's coming to grips w/it *myself* that's been the biggest challenge. Convincing myself that no, it's not me overreacting, remembering wrong, being too sensitive, deserving everything she handed out b/c I'm that stupid, useless, ugly, worthless, and she was simply trying to HELP me overcome my flaws, etc...that's been the biggest thing.

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:grouphug:MyCrazyHouse

 

Honestly, it's when they're not blatantly over the top that I think it's the hardest. I mean, my mother was way, WAY over the top, and it's taken me until a cpl of months ago to cut off contact...something I should have done decade or 2 ago.

 

There's so much pressure to forgive and forget, to deny the reality...I mean, who wants to admit that their mother dislikes them so? And what's that say about you as a person when your own mother seems to enjoy your pain, and deliberately sets out to cause it? How do you explain the little things...the tone of voice that sends chills down your spine, the digs that to the casual observer sound like an innocent comment, but b/c of the history, the set of the jaw, the look in the eye you know you've just been knifed in the gut?

 

It's like nailing Jello to a tree, trying to get other ppl to understand the subtlety of their abuse in public, or the true nastiness that occurs behind closed doors.

 

It's coming to grips w/it *myself* that's been the biggest challenge. Convincing myself that no, it's not me overreacting, remembering wrong, being too sensitive, deserving everything she handed out b/c I'm that stupid, useless, ugly, worthless, and she was simply trying to HELP me overcome my flaws, etc...that's been the biggest thing.

 

:grouphug: Yes, this exactly. You describe my life, my pain, my confusion. Thank you for expressing it so brilliantly, for understanding.

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