Who has two thumbs and a narcissistic mother…?

This gal!! 

So I recently e-stumbled across the blog of another adult child of a narcissist (ACON) and was reminded how amazing it is when someone else GETS IT. Like, for real gets it. Because when your parent is *literally* fucking incapable of giving a shit about your relationship, most people are not able to wrap their heads around that. Nope, talking to her won’t fix it, she doesn’t need a second (really, a four hundred and second) chance to understand where I am coming from, I don’t need to use therapy phrases about what *I need* and how *I feel* because in a narcissist’s mind there is no *other*. We are all just pawns in their story-game. Yes, even their children. Even their parents and grandparents, and grand kids. For my mom especially, it’s all about how she can spin a situation to martyr herself in someone’s else’s eyes.

How much pity can she collect (while appearing not to want pity) because her kids don’t talk to her? Let me tell you, when she calls people asking if we’re alright, saying she’s worried about our health or safety because our abusive husbands won’t let us talk to her and are turning us against her, keeping her from knowing that her daughters and grandsons are safe… it’s a lot of pity. A lot of “Oh you’re so strong, that is so terrible, how DO you handle that?” pity. And then a lot of people who think they know what’s going on suddenly nose into our lives with their concern that we are being controlled and manipulated, and that we just need to love our mother and understand her concern…. We call these people flying monkeys. 

My sister and I have done a job trying NOT to drag outsiders in, even when our mom has. We don’t answer their erroneous concern with much more than “There is far more to it than you know, kindly mind your business.” It’s getting harder, now that my sister has finally understood more fully the extent of our mom’s particular brand of crazy sauce and in response limited her contact. I limited contact a long time ago, with occasional periods of no contact. Actually switch that–I usually don’t talk to her (email, FB, etc) at all. When I try, I just get burned. Over and over. Anyway I am half-considering an open letter on FaceBook at this point to ask my family/friends not to talk to her about me should she come calling, and to assure them that Hubby is not controlling or abusive and all lack of contact is my own decision for the mental well-being of me and my kids. 

I could keep going. But I’ll leave that there for now. 

Here’s the blog I found, along with some personal responses dredged up by finding a little “community”

http://www.rubbershoesinhell.com/how-to-be-an-adult-child-of-a-narcissist/

I’M NOT THE ONLY ONE WHO HAS NO IDEA WHAT TO DO WITH MY LIFE!! While I’ve known about Narcissism and that it’s my mom’s issue for years now, there is still so much I haven’t put together. For me growing up, it was pretty much fact that you can not be whatever you want. Dreams/Goals/Wishes are pointless because you will ultimately end up a nameless, faceless worker bee doing something really unimportant, unappreciated, and not very well paid. This may be why I have a degree I’ve used all of NEVER in ten years and “by trade” I’m a receptionist. Shoot me. 

Intimacy? Loveability? Also lies, if people know the truth about me they will hate my guts. Check. [I remember being constantly amazed by unprompted shows of affection from my friend’s parents… like really? That’s a thing? But, but, they talk to me all the time, they must not be paying close attention.]

Narc traits? Yep. I struggle daily with how my behavior(or anger…?) seems to be aimed toward making my kids feel always wrong. It sucks. I’m trying. It sucks.

I don’t know about being able to pick out another Narc in the general population, but I haven’t really thought about it. I guess, yeah, I have seen people with whom I just stopped interacting altogether because it’s effing pointless and frustrating and so not worth my energy. I do know that close friends have pointed out that it’s clear I want everyone to like me. It doesn’t seem I do it by Narc means, so that’s good, but I always do assume I am starting from a position of having to prove I’m good people. 

OK Next one: 

http://www.rubbershoesinhell.com/my-inner-child-needs-a-time-out/

Expert at nothing? Yep. Even though many would disagree about that in some areas, it always baffles me completely that anyone might think I  know anything about anything. But when they do think that, I have to run with it because I can’t let them down… then they might not like me.

It’s funny, I was always in trouble as a kid for DUMB shit. I was grounded once for two weeks because someone stole my bike. Let me be clear, it was not me and the bike was on my front porch (not like, left at the park or something), but I was still grounded. It didn’t occur to me until I read that post up there that this is exactly why I *always* think Hubby is mad at me for something–even when he is only “upset” (read: not his usual animated self) because he’s wiped out tired or having a rough week at work. I am convinced all the time that I’ve done something to piss him off, (this made for a REALLY stable early marriage, let me just say).

On the flip side, I take the independent realizations far sometimes (“I am a grown ass woman and I do NOT want to clean the fucking kitchen. So screw it. I will take a nap instead. Fuck that pile of dishes right in the face.”) 

Then this one: 

http://www.rubbershoesinhell.com/dont-listen-to-me-i-have-no-idea-what-im-talking-about/

I have a whole host of “hobbies” that I get into and then quit cold turkey because suddenly I’ve put all this pressure on myself to “be” something. And committing to being something is apparently bad for my brain. Still don’t have that one quite worked out. 

And finally (for now) this: 

http://www.rubbershoesinhell.com/fuck-you-stuart-smalley/

My mom, the dream killer, would brag the shit out my sister and I: my amazing grades, her athletic skills, my volunteerism, her singing. If anyone around would chalk that up to her amazing and supportive parental nurturing talents she was soak that shit up with a towel and wring it out over her head to revel in it some more. But when no body was looking? Sports are pointless (now we’re both fat asses, figures. that bitch), entertaining professionally is less than one-in-million and thus stupid as a pipe-dream even, she bitched every time she took me to my (monthly) animal shelter club meetings, and she had no idea what kind of classes I was taking (charter high school, so learning was very self-directed) nor did she care. Bonus: if we ever expressed interest in something outside of these neat little display boxes she had us in (like the two years I played softball, or the other two I swing-danced, or the years I sang in the school [garage] band, took guitar lessons, did theater, etc. etc.) We were even more actively sabotaged or otherwise completely ignored in these pursuits. Case in point: Sis played basketball three years and we were at every game and Sis never missed practice even if it meant my mom had to drive the carpool that day (though BOY did we hear the bitching about that when everyone was gone). I played softball two years. If I couldn’t catch a ride with my friend (who had 6 siblings, so seat belts were at a premium) I couldn’t make it to that practice or game. My family only came to one game and mom didn’t even pretend to care while she was there. You can probably tell my sister was the golden child (a common phenomena in a Narc’s house) although there were plenty of things screwed up for her, too. I’m just less familiar with those. 

Alright, I dunno what to say at the end here, except that it feels helpful to put it out there and process some shit. Without committing to anything I’ll say I will probably do more as more comes up, either from the Rubber Shoes blog, or other research, or real time IRL drama 🙂 

Peace Out
-Wifey

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About theBADhousewife

nature-loving, kid-chasing, housework-hating, dinner-cooking, paper-whoring, bibliophile and general dweeb.
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10 Responses to Who has two thumbs and a narcissistic mother…?

  1. ragemichelle says:

    It’s like my dad and your mom are a reflection of each other.

    I’m very VERY sorry you have to deal with that, but there is something to be said for kindred spirits. We’re our very own subculture. A sick and twisted subculture, sure…but still… 🙂

    Be strong. You are amazing! And I am honored that you would feature my ramblings in your writing. Thanks for that.

    • Sis, my cousins, and I all decided that at least we figured out how to benefit from this: We all talk to each other like family should and don’t take anything our parents say at face value (it was a whole nuclear fuck-up of NPD in that family). Also we are all wicked funny and stoopid awesome. If we do say so.

      And then we decided to write the last two generations out of that family tree.

  2. carolyixin says:

    Are you me? Seriously though, I totally get the half-assed hobbies, and not wanting to do housework “BECAUSE I AM A FREE WOMAN AND I’LL DO WHAT I WANT!” And, oh god, my early years in my marriage. “WHY CAN’T YOU TELL WHAT I’M THINKING? I’M GOING TO CRY IN THE BATHROOM FOR HOURS AND NOT TELL YOU WHY!” Luckily I’ve (mostly) moved past that. It’s so nice to find another blogger who also gets it. Any time I’ve confided in my friends about my parents behavior it’s like “you should apologize to them, they’re amazing blah blah blah”. Hang in there!

  3. Gabby says:

    I really enjoyed reading this article. It is sad that abuse in the court system can only be recognized in the physical form. I grew up with a mother who is extremely narcissistic and childish when it comes to me living my own life. I never felt like she really loved me. She had no respect for me as a seperate person, and i never felt like she was really proud of me for anything i ever accomplished. Almost jealous in a way. It’s affected my relationships, my job, and my school. I can’t escape her jealousy towards my success, but I also can’t enjoy any success in my life. Anytime I speak up about how it’s harmed my OWN life, my family thinks I’m betraying them. I read an article recently that really helped me out on this subject. Here’s the article, it’s definitely similar and just as informative:

    http://www.psychalive.org/2013/03/the-problem-with-narcissistic-parents/

  4. kannh says:

    How are you doing? Have enjoyed your blog, you helped me through some things… Hope you’re well and happy. 🙂

  5. Shazam1au says:

    I can relate to what you are saying so sooooooooooooooooooo well!! Thank you x

  6. MM says:

    It IS so amazing to find someone else who gets it! Just found your blog and am looking forward to reading more of it. I’m 44 and found out a few years ago that my mother is NPD. Finally, things started making sense. It’s crazy how all the pieces started falling into place. No, she wasn’t just a “mean” mother, she was verbally and emotionally abusive. Yes, she hid it well (extremely well in many instances – oh isn’t she the perfect mother, with that oh, so terrible daughter, oh you poor thing) but there is no mistake about what she was and is. I fiinally have some tools/armour to protect myself from her game playing (knowing what the games are and how not to play has been immensely helpful!!!) and limited contact/interaction has been helpful. I have an 8 yo who loves her so I can’t go no contact. It’s amazing how many similarities we ACONs have. I have always struggled with not knowing what to do, and of course whatever I have done has never been good enough. Other struggles: self-care (this is huge), housework (oh, god, me too), relationships (duh), work, etc., etc., etc. Take care, and thanks for putting this out there! -MM

  7. misstikiwak says:

    Thanks for sharing. My mother is a narcissistic, and I recently went “No Contact,” FINALLY, and I’m in my forties. This blog post: http://awordplease.org/2014/07/07/206/ was the final straw. It wasn’t the worst thing she ever did, but it helped me realize that as long as she’s alive she will be trying to undermine my happiness.

  8. Nailed it. I tried to go “no Contact” and was very happy while it lasted. Having difficulty getting sucked back in as I have 3 sisters, one who is the Golden Child, and two that have their own serious issues and are just absolutely oblivious to the whole thing. They understand what I’m saying when I provide specific examples but they think I’m holding a grudge and trying to be mean, which is the furthest from the truth. I just don’t want to be involved in the dysfunction. Perhaps the worst part is the worst offender of the narcisicism is actually my grandmother, who lost her only son to suicide, which she uses for sympathy with no acknowledgement of where his mental health issues could have originated, and pulls the “I’m too old to understand what’s going on” card when she is being particularly devious. Having no contact is the easy part, it is all of the people who don;t understand who want to keep telling me what a selfish, spoiled brat I must be and a horrible person and daughter to keep my family away from my little one. Ugggh. I get it, I do.

    • We call those people flying moneys. And make no mistake, they are assholes. Whether they mean to be or not, their pressuring you is not about what’s best for you but what’s easiest for *them*. Hugs

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