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Do You Have a Narcissistic Mother?

Updated on April 7, 2010

I came to the realization not to long ago that I have a narcissistic mother. Please be aware that I would never have come to this conclusion on my own. A friend was describing her mother and struck by the similarities between her mother and my own, I felt compelled to say so. My friend turned to me and said: "Welcome to my world; you, too, have a narcissistic mother."

What exactly is a narcissistic mother? At the risk of sounding simple minded, one suffering from narcissistic disorder. The disorder is perfectly named, bringing to mind Narcissus, the figure from Greek mythology who fell in love with his own reflection. Anyone stricken with narcissistic disorder reflects everything (or so it seems) on to other people. This is most applicable when it comes to narcissistic parents. A narcissistic mother may only care about herself, but if their child achieves (despite great odds) any measure of success in any area, she will automatically claim credit. For example, I was recently published under a pen name and made the colossal blunder of mentioning this to my mother. Rather than congratulate me, the first words out of her mouth were: "Of course you were published. You get that from me." Get what? As far as I know, the last time my mother wrote anything was an essay at school. But to listen to her, if I had another mother, I would never have been published.

Sound extreme? Probably not if you have a narcissistic mother. And narcissistic mothers have other, equally endearing qualities. One overriding characteristic is that they are highly critical, never of themselves, just everyone around them. They, of course, are blameless. My late father expressed irritation in an unusually candid moment that my mother would never accept responsibility for anything. Nothing ever was, or ever will be, her fault.

This criticism extends to everything, including celebrities. According to my mother, not one is talented and very few good-looking. She hates Angelina Jolie. As you might have guessed, she attempted to become a professional actress, but did not make it. Instead of accepting that she may have lacked the talent and will to succeed in this highly competitive field, it is preferable to criticize others. My own attempts to act met with little maternal support. When nothing came of it (I was probably no more talented nor driven than she), all I heard was "I told you so."

Does any of this sound remotely familiar? Did you grow up with a permanently ill-tempered mother who attempted to negate nearly everything you did? For example, getting straight A's was never good enough. Did you attempt to become as perfect as possible to please her, only to be criticized, as always, in return? Did she start to make negative comments about your body as you entered adolescence? Your weight? The way you dressed or wore your hair? Does she continue to do so today? Then I'm afraid that you, too, have a narcissistic mother.

Please realize that I am by no means a mental health expert. But I have spent a lot of time lately researching the topic and wanted to share what I learned with an audience in the hopes of helping others. As I understand it, there are two basic types of narcissistic mothers: the ones who ignore their children, wrapped up in themselves, or the ones who attempt to take over completely. Since I have no experience of the former, I'll restrict myself to the latter. These mothers spend most of their time, as I've indicated, criticizing you. And it's seldom, if ever, constructive criticism. A reason these mothers are so critical is, because in their view, you not only reflect upon them (ever hear that growing up?), but are actually an extension of them, which they seldom if ever admit. But they believe it all the same, which is why such an emphasis is placed on your appearance. There is an ever-present demand that you to look your best always; after all, what would the neighbors think? God help you if you ever leave the house looking anything other than perfect. I was once told that an acquaintance of the family (a friend would have known better) thought my parents had two daughters very close in age. According to my mother - visibly irritated while relating the incident - the reason was because I had dared to leave the house with no makeup. "Naturally, she didn't recognize you without it."

But enough about me. Having a narcissistic mother is a common problem, so I've provided a checklist for you to refer to below:

  • Lack of empathy (this is a key characteristic of all narcissists)
  • Charming to others (you usually don't matter at all)
  • Self-obsessed (again, a key characteristic)
  • Any emotional episode you mention will almost always produce a comparison to themselves
  • Further to the above, constantly brings herself into the conversation
  • Refuses to discuss anything that does not relate directly to her or at the very least interests her
  • Automatically expects you to share her interests and tastes
  • Thinks nothing of ridiculing your body (there's usually a part she really dislikes, and makes that perfectly clear), weight (you're usually too fat), height (always too tall or too short), complexion, makeup, hair, clothes, friends, and perhaps above all, your significant other
  • Is embarrassingly flirtatious, so much so, you dread introducing her to a new boyfriend
  • May think she is far more intelligent, talented, or beautiful than she is, to the point of being delusional
  • It's her way or the highway
  • Everyone walks on eggshells around her, afraid of an outburst or worse, a tantrum
  • When you lived at home would open your mail, try to read emails and text messages, would pick up the telephone extension, read your journal
  • Married to or living with a man who is an enabler or equally as narcissistic
  • Expects you to drop everything to see her or speak to her on the telephone
  • May call several times as week or even several times a day, without having very much to say

While your mother may not exhibit all of these characteristics (and this is by no means a comprehensive list), she is bound to exhibit several. Getting down to brass tacks, if you suspect that your mother is narcissistic, what should you do?

First of all, please be aware that she will almost certainly always be this way. Generally speaking narcissistic mothers do not change. These women truly believe they are perfect and equally, believe that everyone is in complete agreement. Even if she were to admit she had a problem (which is unlikely), medication will probably be of no use. Again, what should you do?

I've found that the key to dealing with a narcissistic mother is limiting the amount of time you spend with her. If you still live at home, do everything you can to leave. You must. Leaving may involve moving to another city, or even another country (I moved from London to New York). Secondly, limit telephone calls. If she is calling non-stop, substitute 'Do Not Pickup' for 'Mom' into your caller ID, both cellphone and home phone. Do not feel guilty about this. The narcissistic mother relies on guilt (as well as her favorite tactic, criticism) to manipulate you. And never allow her to call you at work! This could easily affect your credibility with your colleagues. If necessary, say it is against company policy. Whether it is or not does not matter in this case.

Some adult children of narcissistic mother opt for no contact at all. Most, however, do stay in touch. Keep both telephone calls and visits to a minimum. Do you really want to hear, yet again, how popular she was before she married? Odd, she didn't keep any of her friends. Or listen to her talk behind your sister's back for the umpteenth time? Narcissistic mothers view child rearing as an opportunity to experiment with the military concept of 'divide and conquer'. Usually, there is a favored child, one who can do no wrong, as well as a victim, the proverbial scapegoat for all of her frustrations.  This child may be abused physically as well as emotionally. Any money spent on them is spent with obvious reluctance.  This child will be told to grateful for everything.  And Heaven help you if you complain. The narcissistic mother will usually become livid, but perhaps just seethe while telling you how ungrateful you are.

The child of a narcissistic mother may find it unbearably painful to dredge up such memories and it is an excellent idea to seek professional help.  That may present a challenge financially, but really, there is no better investment. Ask your doctor for a referral. And make certain that the therapist specializes in this problem.

Once you confront the problem, whether in therapy or not, you may go through a period of mourning, that your mother was not the sort of mother who had cookies and milk waiting when you got home from school, then helped you with your homework before staying up late to sew your costume for the upcoming ice skating competition. My grandmother was exactly this sort of mother (and grandmother) which may have been the problem. My mother was so spoiled as the youngest child, that she has never learned that the world does not, in fact, revolve around her. But more narcissistic parents were the child of at least one narcissistic parent.

One very effective thing to do is silently forgive your mother for not being the mother you needed.  You will have to do this more than once, but as you forgive, you release tension. And in dealing with her, I would avoid mentioning that you believe she may be narcissistic. Not only will she almost certainly deny it, but will most probably fly into a rage. You don't need that. Besides, it accomplishes absolutely nothing. Just keep contact as brief and infrequent as possible as well as establish boundaries. One technique I use on is to say, almost as if speaking to a sulky child: "Let's have a conversation in which neither of us criticizes anyone or anything." Since having a conversation under those circumstances is impossible for her, she'll get off the phone rather quickly. By the way, if your mother insists that she is not critical, don't waste time arguing. Remember, she knows everything. Just change the subject.  And if she wants an argument, calmly tell her you'll hang up. Your heart may be pounding as you do this, but you'll feel so much better afterward!

Recovering from a lifetime with a narcissistic mother may be challenge, but ultimately, will be rewarding. It's essential that you learn why your childhood was so unhappy, and more to the point, you're not to blame.  And by doing this, you not only improve your life, but lessen the chances of becoming a narcissistic parent yourself.


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      Neyra 3 years ago

      I was on this site two years ago and here I am again. This week, after another verbal abuse, I have decided to go with NO CONTACT and throw away everything in my house that reminds me of NM. I am done. In the past two years, I was exploring the option of "limited contact", which made her extremely angry (ignoring her for a day or two when I am at work or my Internet is down, I was the worst daughter in the world). She would leave nasty messages with F words on my phone. I changed the number. Etc. I have to say, no contact is my choice from now on.

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      Johnf117 4 years ago

      I think this is a real great blog post.Much thanks again. facegeacdcag

    • MsDesign1 profile image

      MsDesign1 4 years ago from Riverside, CA

      Great hub. I can totally empathize.

      I also have a narcissistic mother. She is 94, I'm 50. She is old enough to be my grandmother and my grandmother was the same way too. My mother got worse when I became a teenager. Luckily I observed how unhappy she was and I broke that pattern as soon as I moved to the USA. Happiness is an attitude!

      My father left her when I was 6. My mother has very manipulative, guilt ridden (I get all the guilt for moving to the US) and self centered traits. Many are on your list in your hub. About 26 years ago, like you, I moved from London to LA. I figured 5700 miles of space would help and it did. She is elderly and ill, in the hospital currently.

      She has also become very stubborn and won't sell her home and move into assisted care. I stopped calling my mother about 2 years ago because I felt emotionally and mentally drained and down after talking to her for 3 minutes. I occasionally write and stay in touch through mutual friends of hers via email who understand how negative she is.

      Everything is about her, so she isn't capable of having a normal conversation.

      I'm more stressed about inheriting a moldy flat and selling it 'as is' with serious on going mold issues that she hasn't been able to resolve from overseas than anything.

      Great hub to write and post. Thank you for writing this!


      from another Londoner :-)

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      nikki 4 years ago

      .Hello all hope all is well. Hi only child 2, hoping things have gotten better.

      I was 47 when i got on this site. I am now 50. Just to let you all know, that please take care of yourselves, life is too short. I survived 2 major brain surgeries and i've seen horrible things, whilst in hospital. Don't believe things can't happen to you, because we don't know what tomorrow brings.

      Heal your hearts, soul and mind by loving yourself, taking care of yourself, treat yourself like you would an angel.

      From the scapegoat who passed the finish line and got the medal.

      Love and God Bless to all of you.

      Nikki xxxxxxxxx

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      Vladi 5 years ago


      I'm going through something very similar to your situation in the sense of my nm turning all my siblings against me. Because basically I went out of her little world, and realized there was much more outside. I'm the scapegoat, and in a sense, it was a blessing because it is the reason why her abuse ended pushing me out.

      I reconnected to all members of both families (hers and my late father's) that she kept us away from filling our heads with nothing but hatred against all of them.

      It turns out they're actually quite normal and loving people. They just knew who she was.

      Last one was this past week my brother came to town (after almost 3 yrs of not seeing him) for a 1 week-visit.

      He didn't want to see me, because of this "cult" for her. Itseems the "worse" I;ve done is to talk agian to my father's family.

      But even though it hhurts, I don't care. I prefer not to have them around, especially near my children and husband.

      That's sick.

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      klr 5 years ago

      I realized had a NM about 2 years ago and have been really trying to work thru all of the madness that is my mom! I have a sister who was always looked at as the poster child and then secretly she would tell me I was her favorite. I was treated completely different then my sister, I was the one who was yelled at and hit when ever she needed her anger taken out on something or someone it was always me. She used to say I reminded her of herself and maybe she didn't like what she saw so took it out on me.

      My dad never new how she treated me, he was always working and a very loving wonderful father, she would always and still always puts him down and he took it from her for 23 yrs until she left him. Which he now knows it to be a blessing that she left!!

      Anyways I am 33 and have a 3 yr old little girl and my sister has a son who my mom could care less about all she wants is my daughter, probably to brain wash and mold they way she wants.

      I was almost killed in a car accident 7 months ago and its almost like my mom could care less once she new I was going to live, I told her I didn't want my daughter having over night stays with her anymore and she turned my entire family against me, some won't have anything to do with me.

      I know I have to move on and take care of my own family. I just started counseling and am hopeful for the future. I have been reading all of the posts and feel for everyone out there going thru this.

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      Gail Meyers 5 years ago from Kansas City - United States

      I really enjoyed this article. I kind of chuckled to myself when you were discussing how your mother took credit for you being published. That is so spot on for a narcissistic personality disordered mother. I can chuckle now, but it was anything but humorous at the time. Having a narcissistic personality disordered mother is hell on earth. In any case, the example from my own life that comes immediately to mind is getting my education. She fought and manipulated all the way through each year of school. It was everything from manipulation with guilt trips and devaluing education, to actively trying to make it impossible for me to continue. Yet, every time I graduated she made sure it was in the newspaper and the first line mentioned that I was her daughter. However, she always had some reason for not being able to attend the graduation ceremonies. Shortly after I started college she decided to get her GED, then tell me she really thinks college is a waste of money and the most intelligent people do not need formal education - they are self-made. When I graduated from law school, she gave me a card containing a backhanded insult. Voted up!

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      NIKKI 5 years ago

      Hello all, haven't been on the site for quite some time. The last time i was on here, i left my NM. After 8 months i went back to visit, just to see if it might work with her. I had to act like a different person to make things work. Guess what i left for good now. I really know it will never work. I've decided whole heartedly that my health is more important and my life is much more calmer and free of the abuse. I told her she better keep away or i will call the police.

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      Vladi 5 years ago

      Thanks for replying bluegirl19.

      My sister just apologized yesterday about wanting to hurt me by saying many cruel things in that conversation, and then she justified herself by telling me it was because she got really upset to hear me complaining about such an important person in her life (our mother), and suggested me to never talk about that topic., and told me she doesn't want to lose me.

      I don't want to lose my sister either, but also I got really disappointed with all she said, that confirmed me she`ll never ever want to even try to understand how I feel and is 300% on my mother side.

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      bluegirl19 5 years ago


      I think it's good you decided to keep low contact with your sister. She probably is just so desperate to get your unreachable mother's love and acceptance (don't narcissistic mothers just care about themselves after all?) that if it takes bringing everyone down, she will go for it. What she doesn't understand is that her mother's "love" is conditional.

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      bluegirl19 5 years ago

      Hi Alex. Thanks for replying.

      I didn't want to come off as someone who doesn't understand what everybody has gone through. As a daughter of (what I think could be)-a-“narcissistic”-mother myself I know how hard that is. The effects are long-lasting and can destroy people’s lives and our whole sense of self. So, no, that wasn't my intention. But, as it is widely understood, people are prone to repeat the patterns they learn at home. And, sadly, as daughters and sons of narcissistic mothers, we are more likely than others to repeat the cycle if we do not make the conscious effort to break free. And I don't think this means we only need to cut off any communication with our NMs (for example I did emotionally detach from her long time ago, but the story didn’t end there). Maybe the healing process starts by getting rid of the main obstacle of our lives, them. But, we also need to look at ourselves introspectively and see how affected we are so far; though I do not mean with overly critical eyes, doubting our potential and shaming ourselves for being a certain way. No, that's not my point. My point is that we need to try to get rid of any trait that resembles our NMs' attitudes. For example, playing the victim is one of those characteristics (as they can’t do wrong, I’m sure they genuinely believe they’re victims). Now, I’m not saying that having the courage to openly admit our mothers have not been mothers is not right. But as you all know, a narcissistic person can't do wrong, so if there's a problem, the rest are the troublemakers and s/he is the victim...ALWAYS. The only problems that exist are their own. The only scars that hurt are theirs. Further, the others do not have a reason to be the way they are, in their eyes; they just are. (But I do think that even a criminal has a reason to have turned into one, you see. I don't know if this is the "right" approach, but I think most people who do wrong are victims of their own traumas and simply, as a protection mechanism, choose to harm themselves and/or others instead of acknowledging their issues.) So, yeah, I think that in failing to see their mothers as victims of their own monstrosity, some people here may be showing signs of the very thing we are complaining about. After all, if the NMs-who-had-a-narcissistic-parent/relative-themselves were to read this article, they would quickly recognize the traits in their parent/relative and remember how much they suffered at their hands…once again, playing the victim. But, as the narcissistic people that they are (they can do no wrong and they love their kids very much and treat them marvelously), they would totally fail to see themselves as one. And I do think that as children of narcissistic people, we have to make the conscious effort to not end up like that. Also, for those who recommend finding love in themselves instead of expecting it from anyone, look at me. To the risk of becoming a narcissistic soul, I have become extremely self-absorbed just because at some point I stopped expecting anything from anybody. So, yes, love yourselves, but don’t overdo it, because when you least expect it, you can end up loving yourself only, and thus, becoming a narcissist. So, for those who this applies (as in my case), maybe is better to get rid of the shame instilled in you that prevents you from openly giving love and showing your feelings instead of going into hiding and distrust everyone.

      Now, I won't deny my mother is probably the very reason I have been having problems that have stopped me from moving forward. I also won't deny that she's still trying to incite fights between my sister and I (now that she moved out, she has been telling me my sister has been talking bad about me to our landlord, and that I should move out to a place she could get for me because my sister doesn't want my welfare. The funny thing is, before reading this blog and being reminded how she really is, I was falling into the trap). And yes, I do not like her and feel very annoyed by her presence. But, I don't know if this is because I have not learned my lesson, but when I think about her tough childhood, I pity her. I pity her because she is a wasted human being who, probably to protect herself from her own pain, has created a fantasy world where everybody must like her and love her. So, whoever threatens to make her see the reality that she is not as "good" as she thinks, is "bad." And I realize I cannot change her, but instead of acting as a victim of "my cruel mother," I prefer to move on. I'm not saying that we have to deny all the distress our NMs have created in our lives. No. But, let's see them for who they really are, victims of their own desires to be accepted, needed, admired, loved or liked (or whatever their reason is) and not get stuck in “my NM is the cause of my pain” forever. (They themselves probably just got stuck in the “I need to know others really admire me, need me or love to validate myself” phase.) Yes, they might be the cause of our pain (no denying there), but once we have been lucky enough to recognize the root of our problems, let’s move forward. For example, now that I have been able to recognize the root of all my problems (the toxic shame I have acquired thanks to my mother and my sister), I will not use that info to keep thinking about what they did and how “bad” they are. That is not productive in any way, as they are nothing but poor wounded souls with no fix and who can’t see beyond their fantasy world. (And let me tell you, how sad that should be! So, once we have emotionally/physically disconnected from them, why keep thinking about their “cruelty” when they are just being cruel to themselves!) Instead, I will use that info to heal myself by making the conscious effort to accept there's nothing I have to be ashamed of every time that feeling overwhelms me and tries to push me down.

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      Vladi 5 years ago

      Hi all,

      Hope everybody is doing good, especially since discovering about nmp's, and that you're not crazy.

      It's been a while since I don't write here. The past almost 2 years without all the toxicity of my nm (thanks heavens, we have no contact) , have been good.

      I'm about to have my second baby (we have a girl at home, who has been enjoying true grandparents' love on my husband side, because my proud mother suggested not seeing me again since I dared to tell her upfront everything I thought about her poor treatment towards me and my family). We've been quite happy free from her. Except yesterday that I found out through a cousin that my nm is telling people she`s planning to come visit my sister (who lives in the same town) and me, and she wants to see her new grandchild.

      I just felt like somebody punched my stomach just to imagine her around us again.

      So, I had to ask my sister (who is the golden child). She immediately told me to not worry, that it was just for appearances, and that my nm has no interest whatsoever in contacting me again. By the way she spoke, my dear sister clearly showed me she`s completely on my nm`s side, and made sarcastic and painful comments that for a moment made me feel like a stupid, crazy, useless person., and of course terrible daughter to our "poor" mother. She even told me the whole family sees with regret the choice I made for a husband (him and myself know each other since many yrs ago, and when we were younger he cheated on me, and I told my mother and everybody, I used to tell everything always).

      So, my sister pretty much told me they all hate my husband and have no respect for him (now I truly believe he`s changed, we have a very different relationship than when we were young, and we keep being together after a lot of life-episodes), and even told me that if it weren`t for us, if my husband and I weren't in the picture, my dear mother would be in contact and loving my daughter (like wtf!), but that we both were like 2 big obstacles for her to reach out on my daughter.

      Of course, she also told me to stop talking bad about nm because she respects, admires, and adores her (it`s like a cult my siblings follow for my mother, I used to be like that, and I used to be terrified of her).

      Of course, when the phone-call finished, I was disgusted, and now I understand more that I must be careful of my sister. I've always tried to trust her because of the sake of sisterhood, but there have been so many episodes where she is nasty to me and my family, that I can't keep looking somewhere else. I have another sister, who used to be my best friend, and who -thanks to my mom- "decided" not to speak to me again until I stopped doing "stupid things" like contacting my late father's family (whom my mother raised us to hate, and now that I'm in contact with them, I realize they are caring, sweet, and loving people, who got threatened to not look for us when my dad died 20+ yrs ago.

      I'm thinking about keeping contact with my sister very low, again jst for the sake of the sisterhood, but right now I don't want to even see her face. She also tells my nm and the other sister many things of what I tell her about our family, and I asked her to stop that. She even told me my siblings and her felt shame for my "situation" of being alone, and that now they woulldn't worry that much because it sounded like I"m very sure of myself and of what I believe, and it seems I "gained" 2 new families (my father's and my husband's, who live in another country). By the way, she sounded so sarcastic and arrogant when she said this, that I just felt -again- my stomach turn.

      Sorry, I had to take this out here.

      What d'you think?

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      alex 5 years ago

      I was cool reading all 3 parts of your story till I read qoute "

      but blaming others and acting as their victims is a very common trait in a narcissistic person, and that’s what most of you are doing with your mothers here? end quote .

      That is a very unfair statement and quite annoying. Everyone has there own journey of healing and I would truly stay on your side of the street and not analyies people here who are truly deeply traumatized. That is no way to speak about us who have had enough torture from NPD.

      I highly suggest you read Dr. Karly McBride book for help. That book saved my life.

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      bluegirl19 5 years ago

      (Part 3). I don’t know about you guys, but maybe you also have to check out you are not turning into your mothers. I know this site is to vent a lil bit, but blaming others and acting as their victims is a very common trait in a narcissistic person, and that’s what most of you are doing with your mothers here. Yes, they have not been good mothers (in fact, they have been horrible mothers), but they are still human beings, victims of their own traumas. I think that this narcissistic attitude emerges as a defense mechanism people develop because they themselves have been neglected. I think this is their way to protect themselves from hurting; when the people they wanted love from (their parents) did not love them, they learned to love themselves to the extent they are the only thing they love (which I'm fearing is becoming my case). My mother would sometimes tell us about her childhood. She says that she lived with her grandmother and her dad and siblings. My grandmother was from a rural place, and wasn't treated well by my mother’s paternal grandmother, so she left and formed another family (all of who have contact with my mother and her siblings). Her dad (my grandfather) was never there for his kids. He was a mommy’s boy and whatever his mom did and said was right for him. But she treated my mother and her siblings badly, and while my mother’s dad gave his mother money to take care of them, she spent most of the money on her own children and gave my mom and her siblings the leftovers. My mother says her brother was an excellent student, but my grandfather didn't even notice this so instead of letting him apply for college, he made him join the military. My mom also says her father never noticed her accomplishments and didn't believe she was capable of anything even though she was a good student. This same man tried to steal “our” house twice (he feels he has that right because he lent some money to buy the house) through paperwork. So, yeah, they themselves are just repeating the vicious cycle their ancestors started (many of you have confirmed so by saying your mother’s mothers were narcissistic as well), and so could we. Just as myself and you guys, when people learn they can’t expect their mothers to love them, they protect themselves from hurting by focusing on making themselves feel better. But the thing is, just as this very fact turned our mothers into NMs, it could turn us to be one as well. Let’s not let that happen.

      Sorry for the length of my story, but I needed to vent.

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      bluegirl19 5 years ago

      (Part 2). But, to protect myself from the pain of having absolutely no one in my life, I started looking for ways to make myself feel better. Luckily, my mother hanged positive quotes on the walls of our copy shop (where my sister and I spent most of our time working by the way.) I would read them and try to make the most of them. When someone went to our copy shop to make copies of more positive quotes, I would make a copy for me. That was my escape, especially when I felt like dying inside. I would read any positive quote and bible’s passage that gave people strength to continue. Also, when I saw movies were the bullied ones became popular for some sort of destiny, I gained more courage and hope to change my life.

      I decided, just as the movies’ bullied characters could start a new life in a place where nobody knew them and their stigma, that it was essential for me to leave my class (in my country we are a class with a distinctive letter all throughout the years, so if I end up in 1C, the next year I’m going to meet my classmates in 2C and so on). But, first, I needed to find a way to survive the bullying. I didn't want anyone to see how weak I was and how sad their attitude made me anymore. Plus, I had an extreme fear and shame to be pitied. So I learned to show a confidence façade to survive school. I pretended I didn't care about what anyone had to say about me as I had myself and that was all I needed. (As time passed, I learned to enjoy having myself only.) Also, when my sister and my mother would call me “weird” to make fun of me, I started fully embracing “my weirdness” and told them I was unique and different, "superior" to the crowd unlike them “and the rest.”

      And, in the year we were living with my mother’s dad after someone broke into our house and stole our working equipment, I suggested my mother that it would be better for our economy if I studied nearby (I was also afraid she would threaten to not pay my commute to school). She was going to sign me up in a school near our new home, but then we moved to the old house again. I don’t remember what story I made up (I was never going to tell her the real reason why I didn't want to come back to my former class as she could use it against me) or how I convinced her, but she finally moved me to another class in the same school. This was in the morning (7am- 1, where most students where primary schools students and just one section was for secondary school students) instead of the afternoon (1pm-6, my former schedule), where you could find all the secondary students.

      During the two years in the new class I could finally breathe better, but they all had their networks of friends and I couldn't get close to anyone. I made a new student my "friend" and we would hang out together, but there wasn't an emotional closeness, as I find it difficult to build one. As for my looks, I started trying to look more stylish and eating properly. And, when I saw my mother putting on makeup, I learned one thing or two. So, by the time I finished high school, I wasn’t “the ugly one” anymore. Now at 23 I have become an attractive girl who is “pretty” or “hot” in the eyes of many.

      But, while I thought I had freed myself from the abusive relationship with my mom once I stopped giving any importance to her comments, I have just realized that my sister became my new “NM” as I have always tried to look for her approval while all she has done is bully me, tried to embarrass me, and sabotage anything I start to improve myself (ironically, it’s thanks to my mother’s latest “divide and conquer” comments that I have realized this.) And the scars are always there. I might not have harmed myself in the physical sense, but I learned to sabotage myself all the time (I think I’m addict to it because I just can’t stop). Also, I don't really trust anybody. I keep all my feelings to myself and never confide in anyone. I can’t verbalize my feelings most of the time and I can’t get emotionally close to anyone. I sabotage my friendships (except for a few great ones I met on the internet) and any potential relationship. I don't feel comfortable hugging or kissing anyone. And when someone makes things that show they love me, I see it but deep down I down believe it. I think they love what they think I am, not what I actually am. And when it is very obvious, and there's no room for me to doubt their feelings, I feel I don't deserve their love. I also feel that I'm so damaged that I will just hurt them, so I end up sabotaging things. Or, I also think that once they realize how boring and uninteresting I am, they will leave me, so I distance myself from that potential pain. I don’t even think I could ever be a good mother or girlfriend because I feel stupid showing affection, and affection is what children and a partner need. So here I am, never having had a boyfriend, a kiss or even close friends I can talk to apart from the few I met through the computer.

      Now I’m afraid I’m turning into my mother. When I’m in class, I unconsciously draw the professors’ attention with my energy (I say with my energy because as a quiet person I don’t speak, participate, or look at the professors straight in the eye), and almost always most of them lay their eyes on me while they speak. Some have developed crushes on me. I usually question why is it about me that causes this. But then I realize that the few times a professor doesn't pay attention to me, I take it as a challenge to be noticed until that happens. And I’m just thinking that’s just so sick. Why would I need to be the center of the attention! I'm also never satisfied with what others do unless I consider the results to be of excellent quality. I must admit that this also applies to myself as well since I don’t think I have done a good job if it doesn't look excellent in my eyes (lol, this text doesn't count as I haven’t even proofread it and I still do not master English). But, I come off as a bitch when people show me their efforts and I have nothing good to say because I think their work is mediocre and that they are not good enough to do it. I also hear everywhere that quiet people are good listeners, but I get bored when people are "talking and talking about themselves" "as if I cared" and telling me things about their lives I don't care about. I find myself often thinking their lives are so banal and they are so crowd-ish. It’s like I don’t care about them or the things they have to say. (That’s scaring me now that I reflect about it.) Then I wonder why I can’t get close to people!

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      bluegirl19 5 years ago

      (Part 1) Hi everyone. I’m so happy I found this site. I read half the stories (I come when I get time to continue where I left off), and omg, they are all so familiar to me. I’m 23 years old. My mother is 52 and my sister is 26. I’m not 100% sure she is a NM, but she presents the characteristics described here. We came to the states a few years ago after I finished high school, and that has been my salvation. Now I can spend my time working and studying and ignore her. I just don’t care about her, and I’m so happy she moved with her boyfriend a month ago (though she did it because she wanted to make my sister feel guilty for their fights and now is trying to get my sympathy…ugh). She is completely self-centered and has always been. I have recently realized that my relationship with her and my sister has severely affected the way I relate to people. My mother has exploited my sister’s and my "weaknesses" and claimed credit for our "achievements." For example she claims that we are in this country all because of her, when we were just lucky to get residence permission. She says that I'm a good student thanks to her (mind you, unlike my sister, most of my school uniforms were used and given to me by my cousins or my sister, and my mom didn’t even buy books for me. She didn’t even want me to print my assignments in our copy shop. Also, my school was totally free and its location was in front of my house, unlike my sister's school). But I became a good student just because I became self-sufficient since the time I internalized that I couldn't trust anyone to support me in any way and because ridicule is something I dread (so I didn't want to ask “stupid” questions ever).

      During my childhood, my mother would always ignore me (even the things I received were leftovers of my sister), but when she didn't she would just put me down. The very few times I confided in her, she would use that information to make fun of me later on. She would ridicule me. And she would go and tell everybody in the family about things that would embarrass me and my sister. Like, if my sister peed the bed till she was 11 (Lol, I won't tell mine as it's just as embarrassing as that one), my mom would tell everyone in the family, and all of them would know our every misstep thanks to her. (But funnily, she would later remind us how everybody knew what kind of kids we were.) I remember that after my 6th birthday or so, she would often forget about my birthday's date. The excuse was that classes started by that time, so it was normal to forget about it. She would never go to any school parents' meeting, and whenever there was a celebration at my school (like mom's day and stuff), I would be one of the few kids whose parent wouldn't be there (my father was working overseas.) At least she wasn't like this with my sister at all.

      When I would tell her that she was wrong (because she often was), she would go really mad and say I was a rebel without cause. In my country, they give too much importance to mothers and elders, so when someone saw me and my sister wouldn't cater to her every caprice, (according to my mom, who happens to be very charming to people) this person said we were bad kids. So, after seeing her ideas validated she truly believed that her kids, age 9 and 6, were really bad kids and things got worse. So, since I was 8 or so she was already threatening to call the cops on me and ask them to take me to some reformatory...for being "so bad." I remember she would beat me (with a belt and stuff), but for some reason I don't have specific memories about that...except for the day she was so mad at me for some stupid thing that she wanted me to bend down at my knees and ask for her forgiveness. She would also kick my sister and me out of "her" house. (She always made it clear that the house she bought with my father was hers since my father "only found the location and gave a little money" while her family helped for the most part. She has now gotten the house’s ownership and gets money as a landlord.) She would make us leave the house and close the door. She would do that every once in a while, since I was like 8 years old. After all, we were "very bad" and "someone" else has seen it herself/himself! (As for me, I would only remain outside for hours, trying to catch my sister to beg her to let me in. And when my sister was kicked out, I would look for any opportunity to open the door, look for her and ask her to come in.)

      Also, she would go with her boyfriends and leave us home alone. The first time she did this (I was like 8), we were very scared something bad could have happened to her. But eventually we started liking it and longed for her to go. (Funny, but when we wanted her to go, all we knew we had to do is tell her not to go “please”; otherwise, she could decide to stay). My sister and I would watch anything on the TV, anything. So, I developed faster than kids my age (by age 9 my period had started, and at 11 I looked like 15.) Older guys started to look at me, but I was very insecure and didn't enjoy the attention. That’s when I started to disregard my diet and my appearance.

      I started to look very bad. My cheekbones and teeth stuck up too much and I looked like a cadaver. My skin looked terribly, and my hair was a mess. That’s when the worse time of my life took place. In high school they called me ugly and made fun of me. Some classmates even made comments that they doubt someone would be my bf if someone bet him to. When a girl invited me to her birthday party, a couple guys asked her if she really was inviting ME! I was a good student, so that was the only thing that kind of counterbalanced the bullying. They wouldn't attempt to bring me down completely because they kind of respected that I was “the smart one”. But I was never invited to any parties. And, when the group of girls I hung out with in school made plans to hang out outside of school, they never included me. I was not only the ugly one, but also too serious. People looked at me with pity, thinking I would never be desired. It all affected me, but it didn't destroy me.

      What destroyed me was realizing that I had no support at home. (In my country this is harder to bear than it is here since the “I need to look after myself first” mentality doesn't really exist there and people rely on their friends and family for support.) My mom would make fun of me about how bad I looked. She would look at me with disgust and shame. She would constantly make reference to my looks. (I started feeling fear and shame even when someone “caught” me looking at myself on some mirror.) I was (and am) a loner (I’ll explain why later. But, since my culture is not individualistic and everyone has a network of close people, this was very odd and so I was to many), so she and my sister started saying that nobody wanted me and made fun of me for that. They would constantly remind me how unwanted I was (because besides my solitude, my “weirdness” and “ugliness,” I was “the rebel with no cause” for standing up to my mother for decisions I considered unfair). Once I arrived home from school and started crying in secret, my sister caught me and started making fun of me because I was crying. She went to tell my mom the news, and my mom laughed with her. I didn't know where to hide my face and my pain. I just thought my sister was an idiot, but I started genuinely hating my mother. I couldn't conceive the idea that a mother could do that to her child, so I realized my mother was not a person I could ever trust or expect anything from. I don’t feel anything but resentment for her now. I don’t even care if she gets sick. (But these feelings had originated long time before because I always thought she made nonsensical tantrums for my not agreeing with her and telling her she was wrong instead.)

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      Test 5 years ago


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      AlexT 5 years ago

      i am away from my NP at the moment. I have been healing for 2 years and I got "hook" back in and we were having good ocnversations and she was prioviding me with gift car beauty care pkgs and some $. But I soon forgot who she really is...Anyway I am working on pulling it my the roots and that is Shame. Shame is saying something is wrong with me flawed and defective and my mother instilled that along time ago. Shame drives all addictions too. Sense I am away from her I knopw I can get back on the healing track for me it can only be when she isnt in the picture. We got into on thanksgiving and I did feel guilty because she bought me things but didnt end up going to visit her in calif. I was drinking when i called and she hates my feelings specially anger. I was never allow to feel or have anger around her. i am getting sober again but for me and to heal this trauma and shame. Shame is a horrible emotional abusive thing to put on a child and then that BS has taproot into my aduult life. I know this will not happen but she never ever took one oz. of responsility for the harm she imposed on me. She actually told me she was good mother. WTF. I have learned alot about NP and I know she created the false self due to her own abuse as a child but how can I love her so much and she doesnt even love me back, I mean real love authentic love. It a pain that all of us know to well. I have had a very very tough childhood and adult life I have made bad choices for myself at times. I have been destructive as hell many times. I drank myself to oblivion to try to kill the pain. I have been drinking sense i was 13 now i am 48.

      I am sober now and I have made a ocmmitment to stay sober and heal whatever that entails. We all deserve peace...

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      Linda 5 years ago

      The hardest thing about recovering from this is believing in yourself after so long of not doing that. I think that I am fairly bad at this because I only hear her voice putting me down or not being interested in any of my achievements. You start to think that no one else thinks you're any good either because its so normal for you to be hopeless or inadequate. Self-doubt is so destructive and I have wasted so much time with it. Realising that its her fault is only the tip of the have to then find out who you really are and what you can do with your life. Its hard to break free of that mindset of fear of criticism or failing in her eyes...they become your eyes and your mind and thats evil.

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      Colleen06 5 years ago

      I'm a 43 yo female and I've spent my entire life trying to understand the relationship with my mother. Why she hated me. Why she even had more children (youngest of 4). Why I was never good enough.

      It was just yesterday that I was performing searches trying to understand yet again aspects of her personality and our relationship. Somehow, I came upon an article about Narcissistic mothers. I had only heard of the word, not truly understanding what it meant. After reading more, I realize after all these years I may have found the answer to what I've been searching for. I only wish I had known it many many years ago.

      I feel like I'm now in mourning. Mourning the loss of myself. The loss of my mother. The loss of innocence and understanding.

      All the years I felt worthless and ugly because that's what she told me. All the times I thought I must be crazy. All the guilt I carried for things I wasn't even sure I was guilty about but only because she made me feel that way.

      It's almost overwhelming for me. I feel like I can finally let go of all the pain I've been holding in all these years. I no longer have to blame myself because I was a bad person. It wasn't me after all. It was her. I knew she had mental issues but still thought I must be a horrible child. Or she'd be a happier mother right? If I were a good daughter?

      So thus the mourning. The letting go. Or perhaps I should see it as the awakening.

      As a mom myself, I want to educate myself more on this behavior as I sometimes find myself being like her. It scares the shit of me. Now I know why I have certain tendencies and perhaps know some of it is learned behavior as it's all I've known.

      43 is a better time to heal than never I suppose.

      Thank you for letting me post. I feel like I've had a weight taken off just writting about it. It's time for healing. Here in this forum, I don't feel like I have to hide the ugliness I've had hidden but can be open with others who understand. I just don't know if others really get it.

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      Colleen06 5 years ago

      I'm a 43 yo female and I've spent my entire life trying to understand the relationship with my mother. Why she hated me. Why she even had more children (youngest of 4). Why I was never good enough.

      It was just yesterday that I was performing searches trying to understand yet again aspects of her personality and our relationship. Somehow, I came upon an article about Narcissistic mothers. I had only heard of the word, not truly understanding what it meant. After reading more, I realize after all these years I may have found the answer to what I've been searching for. I only wish I had known it many many years ago.

      I feel like I'm now in mourning. Mourning the loss of myself. The loss of my mother. The loss of innocence and understanding.

      All the years I felt worthless and ugly because that's what she told me. All the times I thought I must be crazy. All the guilt I carried for things I wasn't even sure I was guilty about but only because she made me feel that way.

      It's almost overwhelming for me. I feel like I can finally let go of all the pain I've been holding in all these years. I no longer have to blame myself because I was a bad person. It wasn't me after all. It was her. I knew she had mental issues but still thought I must be a horrible child. Or she'd be a happier mother right? If I were a good daughter?

      So thus the mourning. The letting go. Or perhaps I should see it as the awakening.

      As a mom myself, I want to educate myself more on this behavior as I sometimes find myself being like her. It scares the shit of me. Now I know why I have certain tendencies and perhaps know some of it is learned behavior as it's all I've known.

      43 is a better time to heal than never I suppose.

      Thank you for letting me post. I feel like I've had a weight taken off just writting about it. It's time for healing. Here in this forum, I don't feel like I have to hide the ugliness I've had hidden but can be open with others who understand. I just don't know if others really get it.

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      Rosieblue 5 years ago

      Just saw my nm mum again- unheard of to see her two weeks running -I must have been out of my mind. She had invited me over - something that never happens and I was so flattered that I went! What a saddo I am! This is what I mean - I know what she is, but inside the small girl still hopes! She couldn't be mean to me though because her 'friend' - her next door neighbour, a woman about my age who lives next door to her was there. I'd heard of her of course - my mother never tires of telling me how lovely she is ,what a nice person she is , what a wonderful mother she is. Although they have been friends for years, she has never let us meet before. I expect she has told her friend how crap I am as a daughter.

      Anyway - she fawned and fussed over her all evening. What did I expect? The woman said it was nice to meet the 'imaginary daughter' after so long.

      My mum can only be nice to people who she is not intimate with. This woman is away from her own family who live in another country , my mum loves lonely, vulnerable people who can be dependent on her, because it gives her control of the relationship. That neighbour is welcome to my mother ... she can keep her. Manipulative old hag.

      By the way Chewy mummy is so right - caller ID does that to me to - if I see my mother's name I break into a cold sweat.

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      Tonya 5 years ago

      It's sad but calling them fucking bitches is to kind. More like satan's hitch men. @Chewy Mommy I definitely know of the anxiety of seeing "Mom" on caller I.D. Yet while we are still in the same city I FEAR! Blocking her out.

      I really feel sad for some of my friends and people I know. When they talk about their mom's and I recognize N.traits. How to you tell someone pack up and ran far away your mother's toxic and making you sick...and it go over well????

      It's like watching a pedestrian get hit by a Mac Truck that's just ran the light, drunk and high!

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      Chewy Mommy 5 years ago

      I feel like I am reading a description of my own mother! I had to leave the city I grew up in so I could escape with my sanity. It took years of therapy to accept that the verbal put downs and my mom's inability to mother me was not my fault. My heart still races when I see my mother's number on the caller ID. I hate that she still has the power to produce so much anxiety in me.

      This was a great article. It stinks that other people have to deal with these types of moms but it is also comforting to know we are not alone.

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      Rosieblue 5 years ago

      Just spent a horrendous day with my NM mother. What I don't understand is that I even though what she is , that she will never change, that she is incapable of being nice or taking any interest in me and I have let this all go ( time and time again- over 3 years in therapy) but after a day with her I still feel so so upset.. she is just such a fucking bitch. Excuse my language - but those words are the only ones which will do at present.

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      Tonya 5 years ago

      Hi All! Today is my first time posting however this site aas been a BIG source of comfort this year. I never knew what a narcissist was until I google mother and daughter relationships and Bam! it was like the covers were pulled offed and the secrets to my life were revealed. The who, the what and the way. I read the book "Mom Will I Ever Be Good Enough" and my life was in the first 15 pages...I couldn't put it down, sometimes I will cry, sometimes the reality of it all would be me to such sadness. There was a relief to know I'm not crazy or alone as you all know from child hood there is this feeling in our gut telling us that this isn't normal...

      My life like many of you was full of pleasing my mother. She had me at 19 and both of my parents were made to get married(1974) so I wouldn't be a bastard and you know that's what I was told. SMH. So now with the task of all ways having to prove that I was worthy of being of being born since I F-up her life. My mom was a true stunner so my life was filled with witnessing different men in and out of my mom's life she was a true freak my step-father was exactly my teenage neighbor who rode the bus with me when I was in elementary school, he in high school. I know crazy, her and my dad separated when I was 5. The day that my dad left my uncle who I adored was killed in a car accident! Shit I'm left her with this bitch.

      During all of her creeping session with other men on my step father I was ALWAYS her alibi so while she with whom ever I'm sitting in some strangers living room for hours waiting for her to finish her business. She would announce to my step dad that she taking me here or there to have mother and daughter time all this is what would happen. I think he knew it was a lie. The age difference is about 8-10 yrs.

      My teenage years were pure hell the names she would call me and all the cursing was crazy. She would kick me out of the house often looking back at it I knew that only God kept me safe. We had moved to a different state (age 14)with no family to turn to. I was definitely a target for boys and men to prey on because of my home situation. I always felt out of place at school and some of my girlsfriends parents looked at me like a trouble kid and they didn't want their kids to be exposed to any of whatever was going on in my home. Thank God for the few that sowed into my life. By the time I graduated from high school I was living with a older guy to damn old when I look back at it. I was and still am a hard worker. I graduated from high school with my cosmetology license and diploma. In my early twenties I just wanted to distance myself from the misery of my past. When I met my husband he was close to his family so he would encourage me to be nice to Mom something he regrets now.

      Anyway this year what led to this discovery. I have my own hairsalon Mom was there and my girlfriend who I've known since 10th grade (she has a NM also) we were about to have some girl time dinner and drinks. NM wanted in on some of the action cuz she has no friends of her own. I told her it's our time and I would see her later at home. So my friend went outside to have a smoke NM snatch her up for a hour ( I was finishing working) I knew NM was at wk my friend only went to smoke. So when my friend returned she proceeded to tell me NM was talking about me and my husband how he good to me and great with the kids but he has no money ( he was laid-off) and I work so hard. Y'all know. I was so sick by the whole thing cuz the reason for us to be under one roof was to work together she takes care of my elderly grandmom (who she abuses) perfect plan it seem my desire had been to take care of NM she makes little money. I confronted her of course I got the stone face and gas lightening. Instead of it going away as you know it just went to another level til she basically accuses my husband of coming on to her. Sick just sick... My husband through the years had been learned at this point that she crazy (15yrs) so he kepted his distance if I was home or not. She was jealous and wanted to come in between us for the first he and I were really working together and that was not going to happen on her watch. After this came the slander on the phone with my family out of state with her lies. It was pure hell her creeping around looking for a confrontation my nerves were shot. This was when I discover what a narc was and she in full bloom. We went about 4months of her foolishness then she left and that was too much. She took everything that was nailed down we even helped her move her stuff in the truck. At the end of the move she didn't want to return the keys. Showed up a week later in the pouring rain on a Sun with grandma in tow wanting to drop her off. Every week for about two months she would stop by unannounced and still doesn't call. Only person who I talk to is my uncle her brother on my side of the family no one else has reached out to me. It hurts but I just can't get on the phone with everyone to pled my takes too much energy and I need to HEAL! I have a husband, two sons and a business to run all while rediscovering myself again. Sometimes I wish I could put the world on pause to get myself together. I now realize that I don't have to be a people pleaser. Now I notice that I ran my business that way worrying about other people budget discounting my services below other salons, while I offer excellent service and professional products. My marriage has been the same way more concerned about my husbands needs always above my own and kids,etc. I feel guilty for any thing that I do for myself and if I stand up for myself I feel bad inside for it. I have made some progress though. I go to therapy and I'm on anti-depressants for about a month now it's starting to help with the fear and anxiety. My husband and I have decided to move out of state next year (jun) we are even downsizing to a two bedroom apt to save money. I thought nothing would get me to give up my 10 year business but the thought of no contact and starting over where no one knows us (through this we realize that is mom is a NM) that's another story. There is sooooo much other stuff in between all of this but you guys and gals already now. I would read this hub during the storm of NM and it give me so much strength to keep going. But today I just had to let it out today. I feel like we need a conference or retreat because only you who walk through this really understand. I try not to explain it anymore. I give people my first 38 yrs the rest is for me and my purpose.

      Thanks all

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      OnlyChild 5 years ago

      @Neyra--LOL Thanks for the chuckle. Here's one back.

      I had my gallbladder removed a couple years ago and my husband and mother accompanied me to the hospital. As the surgery nurse explained what would be happening to me and checked me in my mother interrupts the nurse and says: "You know I had MY gallbladder out here 5 years ago and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah."

      Well, the nurse just looked at her with a blank stare and my husband says, "Wilma SHUT UP. Today is not about you."

      I just love that man!

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      Old Mark 5 years ago

      To Neyra and the rest of you

      I haven't looked at this in a while, as NM died a while back. That was an interesting experience, as it focused the mind. I didn't go to the funeral as I really couldn't stomach the idea of some eulogy from some stranger taking the funeral, going on about what a wonderful woman she was etc and seeing people who thought she was some sort of 'saint'. For to the outside world, this is the impression she liked to cultivate. I stayed at at home, half my family did not go and the half that did turned up on my doorstep later in the day to support me, so there was some comfort in that.

      To try and help people further, for it is a very difficult thing to grasp, I will relay a little of my own experience: My parents divorced when I was ten, up until then there were horrendous rows and she only seemed happy when she was creating some sort of crisis. I was brought up by my father and grandparents. She had several affairs and remarried my stepfather. I was very close to my father and stepfather. My stepfather was diagnosed with cancer which was an incredibly difficult time as she hated the attention being drawn to him, spending the whole time whining on about what was she going to do when he was dead and how selfish it was of him to die before her. He collapsed and was taken to a hospice. She didn't tell me and when I found out, she refused, point blank, to tell me which hospice he had gone to. It was not difficult to find out, so I used to go and see him on my own.

      She then tried to commit suicide by taking an overdose and to cut a long story short, I saved her life - the words of the medical staff. I persuaded them to let her out of hospital, but I got no thanks, all I got was that if I told anyone, she would call me a liar and nobody would believe me. However, some of my family knew what had happened.

      My father then had a stroke and died and she was absolutely incensed that she wasn't in charge of everything (my father never remarried). It was pitiful to watch as she 'played her face' with everyone, demanding that she should be in charge, despite having been divorced for forty years. As my father's next of kin, major beneficiary of the will etc, this needless to say became a source of conflict, doing everything she could to undermine the situation.

      She remarried again, her new husband was a kind, caring man, but pretty rapidly he started to realise what she was really like. In the short time that I knew him, I grew very fond of him, for he was a decent man. He dropped dead of a heart attack and my mother did not even tell me he had died, I learnt it from my eldest daughter.

      I went to the funeral, where my mother gave me a tirade of abuse, so both myself and several members of my family left.

      I relay this information to highlight the thing that, if you are still under the 'spell' of NM is hard to grasp: Read and read well:

      She has not one shred of compassion or consideration for your feelings, because it is something she is incapable of feeling. Worse than this, she will get a sadistic pleasure from seeing you hurt. Such is the nature of the narcissist.

      The problem that people have is that it is their mother. Something deep down wants to believe things are other than they are. But they are not. You're feelings don't count as far as NM is concerned. This gets worse if you have children of you own, as you find it incomprehensible that any parent could really behave like that to their child, so something goes on inside you searching for something to believe things are otherwise than they really are.

      When you detach yourself, wake up to the reality, look at things for what they really are,rather than what you hope they will be, then you can cut free and move on. You have to face up to what you think and hope and want to believe is there, simply isn't.

      You have to stay focused and strong. Personally I cut all ties and for what it is worth, that is what I recommend people do. If you do stay in contact, realise that it is a one way trip. Your feelings don't count and that you will be sucked dry of all emotion. Your hope that deep down, somewhere she really cares, simply does not exist.

      There, I've had my say, and I do very sincerely hope that it helps some of you. But please do grasp the nettle, because I have done a lot of research in to this and until you do, you will never move forward.

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      Neyra 5 years ago

      I called NM today after she left messages on my cell.


      ME: "Mom, did we tell you that Sonny's step mom has cancer? She was at the treatment center, and she went through several chemo sessions, waiting for another round. She lost all of her hair. "

      SHE SAYS: "My hair is thinning. I lost a lot of hair recently".


      Yes, I still call her from time to time because she calls my cell and leaves numerous messages if I don't call her back. At this point, I do call her but I don't talk about anything personal. I listen to her and I analyze her behavior like she is someone I know, but definitely not my mother. I managed to distance myself so I can't get hurt.

      Peace and love to all.

    • Gail Meyers profile image

      Gail Meyers 5 years ago from Kansas City - United States

      I enjoyed your hub and my heart goes out to you. I was also raised by an NPD mother. I am going to link your hub to the ones I've done if you don't mind. Take care.

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      Rebel head 5 years ago

      My mother wants me to believe she is always right. She tries to convince Im crazy. It's called "gaslighting".I hate it. She is the emotionally abusive narcissist.

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      Neyra 5 years ago

      Last year, I wanted to initiate a family reunion event in Europe to try to heal my relationship with my NM mother, my half-brother and his girlfriend who is a carbon copy of my mom... What a selfish idea :)

      In my dreams, we all say “I Love You” to each other, holding hands and singing something gentle and beautiful like “...I Love You, You Love Me, We’re a Happy Family, With a Great Big Hug and a Kiss from Me to You...”

      Luckily, the course of events this year made me learn to let go and to face the truth: My childhood was not purple and Barney song is only on TV, possibly in some lucky people's homes. My childhood was more like a “Twilight Zone”. My NM does not get better. It only gets worse.

      It is OK not to look back. It's OK to eliminate phone calls. It is OK not to have any desires to go back to my home town, to the old source of my pain. Thank you Old Mark, for helping me open my eyes. It is hard to admit it and to forgive yourself.

      I do not love my mother. I feel sorry for her and I wish she was different, but I do not feel love and I forgive myself for that.

      Thank you, Justthethird, for your writings as well.

      Thanks to everyone else for sharing your stories and ideas, and thank you for your book recommendations. I'll check my local library and I’ll look for them online.

      I wrote about five paragraphs more on what really happened this summer. The details don't matter. Bottom line is: I financially helped my family and in the end, I was labeled selfish and shameful. I was yelled at again. I am not taking it any more.


      I don’t owe NM anything. She left me when I was 40 days old baby, she hated me all my life. She came back into my life when I was 7 because my grandma forced her to, but she left me again when I was 10.

      She never helped me financially and all I remember is her emptying my inheritance bank account when my father and later on my grandmother have died.

      I feel bitterness from all this and even though I decided to stick to my bullet point list I wrote earlier on this page, I still struggle with number eight.


      Someone wrote: “ interesting technique mentioned in the book is to find a photo of yourself at a young age and to frame it and put it in a place you'll see it often. You are to love the child you see in that photo, and to give her gifts and good compliments...”


      My therapist told me to do exactly that, to hug the little child inside me. Thank you for the reminder.


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      Dana444 5 years ago

      excellent book by Dr. Karly McBride "when will i be good enough" there is also her website. and she also does workshops now online...

    • profile image

      Broken 5 years ago

      No responses:-(

    • profile image

      CaliforniaGirl 5 years ago

      Hi Broken,

      I'm so happy to hear that :-)

    • profile image

      Broken 5 years ago

      Yes thank u californiagirl,that forum is great i am already on it and have got some help

    • profile image

      CaliforniaGirl 5 years ago

      Hello Broken,

      there is a wonderful website called

      Or just google DONM.

      They have a forum, I haven't been there myself, but I think it's quite active.

    • profile image

      Broken 5 years ago

      Please help me

    • profile image

      Broken 5 years ago

      We were just fed up of all this during such a tough time. My parents were always upset that we didnt entertain my brother much.

      We wanted to get hospitalized as well bcoz of our high risk issues but doctor wasnt agreeing.

      Then one day i felt some pinching pain at 34 weeks pregnant and we rushed to the hospital.

      We were made to stay back.

      I have to say we found so much peace away from my family. We were happy and they too were fine with everything.

      The csection date was decided at 35 weeks.

      My husband went to bring camera et from home and m dad asked him if he will also be allowed in the operation theatre bcoz hes a doctor. My husband said only husband is allowed.

      I guess dad wanted to come but husband and i just wanted both of us there.

      We told them come in the evening and they came. I had a baby boy. My room in the hospital was really nice.

      Ok one more thing, i am supersitious and had not told anyone about this pregnancy, not my brothers wife, husbands brothers wife etc as we had a stillborn last time.

      I told my parents i do not want anyome to knowwhenthe csction date is not even my brothers and the moment csection is one we can tell them. But later we involved everyone. But this hurt my parents.

      Well day of the csection parents came in the evening. Mom made some faces and did not commnt at all when she saw pics of my baby, baby was in nicu.

      We felt bad. That night they went n slept never called back

      Next day her behavior had changed. She created million misunderstandings. She said she wont come to the hospial anymore as she caught a cold there.

      She said shes not well so she cannot send me any soup etc. She said my dad and bro want to come. I said ifnthey can bring some food it will be good and she said no she cannot cook. Then she said shes not well so if they come she will be at home alone.

      Well amongst all this i didnt invite my dad and bro to come as we were also hurt and my baby was in nicu.

      3 days later mom started a fight with me. Kept saying she has cold and uti and imsaid plz go to brothers place till u recover as baby is weak and premature.

      She felt bad and said no i will stay here its ok then she said beta be humble and down to earth..u didnt even invite papa and bro to hospital they felt so bad etc etc..and i started crying and said mom whats wrong with u what have i done to u. She said after so muvh seva if one and a half months u r crying and imsaid even u and dad had a vacation it was not just seva. Bas she went crazy. She started abusing me and my husband very badly. She gave very bad words and said hes a very bad son in law. He heard and took the phone and said what happened and she continued. She said we didnt invite them to hospital as we thot nazar lag jayegi brother ki etc etc

      I hung up and wrote an email to my bros about the incident, the gaalis etc

      Next day when i called them my dad blasted me. I said dad mom abused faizan yday. We r getting discharged today. Dad said hes called taxi n they r leaving for india. I said why wont he see the baby he said tum baby dikhana nai chahti ho. And went on and on.

      Finally they fought again 2 days later when my brothers had come.

      My older bro supported me.

      I am tired writing and there is so much i can tell. After csection i hardly got any help as hey had left. My husband said after so many gaalis hes not goimg to stay with her under one roof immediately.

      The end result is tat we said sorry and they said sorry but mom continues to backbite

      They come home to cook for me everyday and r staying with my brother.

      The problem is i am unhappy. I know how they r but i feel guilty that i troubled them.

      What should i do. I have a newborn n keep thinking recalling the fight regretting my side mistakes, getting angry at moms evil nature etc etc.

      Where do i go for help

      Please i know thi is long and boring but help me. Am i at fault at all?

      I will add my husband is a great on in law, has lwys forgiven them for their injustices to me. He is a good man, sensible educated and he says we r not at fault at ll, ll we di was to protect the pregnancy. Even after being abused he has talked to them fine.

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      Broken 5 years ago

      Hi all,

      I feel broken and lost and confused. My mum is a classic case of a narcisstic mother. I dont know what to say about dad just that he never protects me. My mum seems to be jealous and vindictive and very hard to please. She has caused major fights, even with my 2 older brothers but with me she is worse than ever.

      Here is my story. I need help to get over the guilt of dad bcoz altho he is an enabler i think he loves me a lot in his heart.

      My mother has always been crazy. I dont know where to start.

      I belong to mumbai. I have 2 older brothers. My mom was quite nice when i was a kid. She made clothes for me,dressed me,made toys for me etc. I used to be able to talk only with her. I was scared to open my mouth in front of dad and strangers. I now look back and understand she broke my self esteem even when i was a child. She had 2 sons and really wanted a daughter, so i dont understand at all.

      My mom was very badly treated my my nana nani. At a young age my mom and her sister were made to live with my nani's brothers family and her 3 brothers were sent to usa for education etc. Mom was married off. She once told me she was also sexually abused. Basically all this screwed up her mind forever.

      Mom never encouraged me to excel in studies, while she got my brothers books on general kknowlege i was often given startdust magazines to read

      My dads a doctor and he always wanted me to do well, to become a doctor etc.

      I ruined everything by not studying, giving up, hurting them and then they openly turned against me. They would keep saying i shold be beaten up, my dad would say he hates to even look at my face.

      Finally i found my wonderful husband and came to the usa where my 2 older brothers were already living and my life changed. My mom would keep instigating my brothers against me. She would tell them i am a bitch etc. She would blame me for not finding brides for them , for being jealous of them etc.

      Whenever i went to india mom used to be upset, she would instigate my dad and brothers. She would tell my bros that i trouble her a lot. Sne would tell my dad things i never said, eg i gifted him a phone and mom told him i told her that the phone is very expensive etc. My dad would make a face and not talk properly with me after that. Million things like that happened. Everytime she said something abt me she would tell the person not to tell me so there would be no confrontation, just cold war.

      When mom came to the usa she could not take it.she got extemely jealous of me, in fact she never visited me in my city and stayed with my brothers, when i came to visit she wanted me to just leave.

      When a year after that my older brother got married again she didnt want me to come, when i came she wanted me to leave, when i cried a lot she just became cold and did not allow my husband to attend the wedding.3 months later she instigated my brother to divorce his wife.

      Now coming to my main issue. We ,oved to new jersey after my husbands masters for his new job. This where my 2 brothers live.

      2 ys ago i got pregnant. Again my parents said they r coming to usa for me and they came when i was 20 weeks pregnant. They totally ignored me. They didnt stay more than a day with me and when they stayed my mum just

      wanted to leave. I was very hurt. Whenever i would take a train and go to spend time with my parents and single brother she would be upset. She would keep saying she wants both brothers to get married before i have the baby.

      My brother wud refuse to give me his bed even tho he is young and single and i was 20 weeks pregnant. Once i got bed bug bites from his couch and woke up covered in bites and my mom kept saying not to tell my bro his couch had bugs bcoz it wud upset him. She made me sleep on the floor, airbed, couch etc and when one day my bro gave me his bed she told him he should not

      I will add that my apartment is in a very expensive area in new jersey and this made mom verybvery jealous as well.

      She kept comparing and creating rifts between the siblings.

      My delivery was to be in winter and she said being from mumbai she and dad wont be coming for the delivery. I had a misunderstanding that my mil is not good, again it was created by my mum years ago, and we were alone during the delivery.

      In the 9 th month i lost my baby boy at 36 weeks. It was medical negligence. My placenta had seperated, uterus ruptured and i almost lost my life as well.

      After that i was very bitter with my parents, i used to think that my dads a doctor be could have helped if he had come.

      Next,2 yrs went by.often mom realized her negligence with me and regretted not being here for the delivery.

      I was upset at times but forgot and forgave and when i got pregnant again in 2011 i told them and invited them.

      I wanted to give them a chance as well.

      They came in march at 27 weeks pregnancy.

      I was very very cautious and on bedrest. I was not allowed to move around much by the docs and we have a one bedroom apartment

      They were very concerned about me and baby while they were in india. They would call daily. This pregnancy my life was in danger along with babys life. My dad genuinely loves me and i think he forced mom to come early. They have been to usa 5 times and this was the first time they would be staying with me anf first time they came for 3 months as opposed to one and a half months everytime.

      Well i was very happy when they came but then it quickly turned bad.

      It was march end and still cold for them. My mum feels very cold as it is. They started going out shopping and roaming around every single day. 2 times a day sometimes. I didnt mind but my mom would catch a cold and would be coughing sneezing constantly, she wold want the heater high etc and soon i also caight her cold. I would cough and sneeze and it would scare me bcoz last time my placenta had tore away for no reason n it put pressure on my uterus.

      Me and my husband were so worried. We would keep telling them not to go out unnecessarily that this was a high risk pregnancy etc etc but they never listened. If they listened they would be upset and sit with a long face. It made us let them go out as much as they wanted to.

      Also my mom would never sit with me talk to me etc, for her it was like she came here and i shud be happy thats all. She wud tell me my room is too ol when actually it was maybe a couple of degrees cooler than the living room bcoz of a fan on all the time.

      I was on bedrest so hardly left my room. My dad wud come n sit with me all the time though.

      I have one brother who lives closeby. Mom had issues with himas well after his marriage. This brother never cared much when i told him abtthesecond pregnancy he wud hardly come home etc.

      When my parents came he started coming every single day.

      I had a problem with that boz he hardly helped before. He would come and it woud be chaos at home n hubby wud come eferyday from work to find him sitting there in the living room.

      My parents would leave at 6.30 every single day and o roaming, shopping, mall and drives and finally diner.

      This was a daily routine and in the end all 3 wud ome home.

      We didnt know what to do. With all this she also ignored me, showed signs of jealousy, comparisin between my apartment n my brothers whos living single these days as his ife cannot come to usa soon so his apartment is smaller and parents wud keep comparing

      Amongst all this we had some arguments between parents and I and often my mum would then instigate dad and in turn he wud stop speaking properly with me.

      We were just fed up of all this during such a tough time. My parents were always upset that we didnt entertain my brother much.

      We wanted to get hospitalized as well bcoz of our high risk issues but doctor wasnt agreeing.

      Then one day i felt some pinching pain at 34 weeks pregnant and we rushed to the hospital.

      We were made to stay back.

      I have to say we found so much peace away from my family. We were happy and they too were fine with everything.

      The csection date was decided at 35 weeks.

      My husband went to bring camera et from home and m dad asked him if he will also be allowed in the operation theatre bcoz hes a doctor. My husband said only husband is allowed.

    • profile image

      Broken 5 years ago


    • OnlyChild profile image

      OnlyChild 5 years ago

      @Alssla: Give up. She wants to manipulate YOU into doing it. That is her drug. The only time my 90 year old NM is even slightly happy is when she gets me to do something that she can easily do for herself. For that short amount of time she feels THE POWER that she used to have over me full time. Stop giving your mother her drug--you. NMs are emotional vampires. They feed off us. And when they've used us up, they will find someone else. So take care of yourself. That caring mother you hope will emerge when she realizes what sacrifices you make for her is NEVER going to show up. Let the Assisted Living folks do their jobs. They are perfectly capable of taking care of her real needs.

      @Brokenwing: I'll add one. "You were so bad as an infant (I had colic, or so she says...I don't believe anything anymore) that I knew I was going to kill you or myself." Thank goodness my grandmother stepped in to care for me the first couple of months. I think she just realized that all the attention had shifted to me.

      @Karina Fernandez: Get out no matter what. If you are beholding to her, she has POWER over you. And that is what she wants. NMs spin webs of obligations, promises, and attached strings... just so they can get a hook into you. Your daughter is old enough now to understand how important it is for you to distance yourselves. Move to the smallest apartment you can find just to get away. You will feel better as soon as you do it. God bless

    • profile image

      alssla 5 years ago

      My mother told me that she did her duty by having me and my brother and maybe it is my purpose in life to take care of her in her old age. She didn't talk to my husband for 17 years and now he helps me take care of her - what a guy he is! My brother just washes his hands of her, but instead I make myself sick taking care of her. She has confined herself to her room in assisted living and to her wheelchair. She doesn't even leave her room for food they have to bring it to her and I have to even bring her mail to her. She won't do it! She won't let them clean her room because "they" work so hard - she wants me to do it. I am trying to say no, but then after a week or so I say "yes" again. Always trying to please her. Always.

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      Sonya123 5 years ago

      Quotes from my NM to her very young children: "I wish I had never seen any of you!", "Don't call me mother!", "I wish I had thrown you out the window at the hospital!" "What is WRONG with you?". She also said that she loved being pregnant. I'm sure she did because she is such an attention seeker and what better way to get attention? I also grew up feeling unlovable and unworthy. My job (from the age of 6), was to clean, cook, help raise my baby brothers, and do all of the things that she was supposed to do. She didn't work. She stayed in bed all day or talked on the phone for hours. I have a wonderful daughter who is intelligent and is not fooled by the NM. She was so happy for me when I told her that I was going no contact. My NM has told family members so many lies about me and my daughter since then. My aunt called me the other day and she had talked with the NM earlier. The NM told her that I was a closet alcoholic (I drink maybe 2-3 times a year), and that my daughter is extremely overweight (she weighs 120). I asked if the NM happened to mention that she hadn't seen or heard from me or my daughter in over a year. Of course she didn't. She wants to create the illusion that we still worship her. Only one of her 5 kids still speaks to her. Another quote "I am too smart for this world." "Most people are idiots". She has gone to great lengths to get us back in her life. She even drives by our houses periodically. What she gets out of that, I don't know. She has called my co-workers (complete strangers to her) to try to get information about me. I am happy to know that so many others found the courage to get away from these non-mothers. My sister, who remains brain-washed by the NM, tells me that mother calls her several times a day and tries to dictate her every move. My sister is 52! She says that talking to the NM makes her physically and mentally exhausted. But when I tell her that she needs to cut ties, she lashes out at me for not talking to the NM! I will probably go "no contact" with my sister as well. She is just another means that my NM is using to get to me and my other siblings.

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      Brokenwing 5 years ago from North Attleboro, Massachusetts

      Ah... one more quote: "You know, you have to EARN my love; it's not something you just get without deserving it!"

      I was in my 30's before it finally began to sink in that the reason my mother never loved me stemmed from HER, and not from me simply being unloveable. I grew up FEELING unloveable. I had to become a mother myself, and experience the unconditional love for my own daughter, and witness my mother treating my daughter the same way she had always treated me, before I saw the light. I thought to myself: My daughter is the best kid in the whole world (call me biased if you will)... if this woman cannot love my daughter (her own grand-daughter), then she obviously can't love anyone!!

      After I cut ties from her, she literally called every family member and acquaintance she could think of to tell them how awful I am, a compulsive liar, thief, etc. My mother is a brilliant manipulator (IQ 140's) and some people believed her lies. Our family is fractured because of her.

      Presently she is dying of Pancreatic Cancer, and I hear through family members that she has no intention of seeing me, or her grandchildren, before she dies. What a sad, sad situation.

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      Brokenwing 5 years ago from North Attleboro, Massachusetts

      Quotes from my NM:

      "I wish there had been a "Rent a Child" program before I had kids. If I had known then what I know now, I never would have had them" (I was 12, my 2 and 3 yr old siblings were also in the room.)

      While I was pregnant with my first child: "You better enjoy all the attention you get when you're pregnant, because trust me, nobody cares about you AFTER you have the baby... all they are interested in is the baby."

      While I was pregnant with my 2nd child (with terrible complications): "Well you better hope this one's a boy so you don't have to go though all THIS again!"

    • profile image

      Sonya123 5 years ago


      Thanks for sharing your story. You must find a way to get away from her and cut off all contact. NM's don't get better. They only get worse. Mine told awful lies about me to my daughter. She also screamed at my daughter when I left her with the NM when she was little. I didn't know what a narcissist was. I knew she had mental problems, but when my daughter told me the things she had done to her (the same things she did to her children), that was the last straw. I thought she would be sorry for how she treated her children and would do better by her grandchildren. Not so. No more chances for her. I let her control me for 40+ years, but not anymore. For the sake of your daughter and your sanity, move away from her if at all possible. If it isn't, tell her or write her a letter letting her know that she is no longer allowed to visit or call you or your daughter.

    • Karina Fernandez profile image

      Karina Fernandez 5 years ago from Buenos Aires, Argentina

      I really don't know where to start.. First of all, thank you all for posting and sharing your experiences. I was sure I wasn't the only one, but sometimes it feels like it.

      I tried reading the whole lot of posts, while deciding whether to post something myself or not, until I summoned the courage to do so. So here I am.

      Life summary: I was born in South America and am an only child. My parents and I moved to Canada when I was about 5 where we lived until I finished high school. Then we came to SA and I have been here for the past 20 years. I am now 38 and am a single mother of a 15 year-old. Sadly, my mother is my next-door "neighbour".

      I've been in and out of therapy my entire life, thinking I was the problem. Because my daughter is now a teenager and she every right to be happy, sometimes I feel unfit as a mother because mine paralyses me. It's like I let my daughter defend herself from my NM. This is why I need guidance basically.

      Today, my daughter came back from a 2 week vacation with her aunt who lives in another province. Of course she wanted to go so she could have a "break" from my mother since it was her winter break. I asked my daughter why she was watching TV (because on the trip back home she made it clear that she couldn't wait to use her computer and watch her you-tuber). So she answered me, "I'm waiting for grandma to leave the laundry-room so she doesn't start going into a fit again.."

      Her comment sounded so familiar. So real, so tangible. It reminded me of how I used to act when my NM was around during my teenage-hood and felt afraid.. Afraid for my daughter. I know living here is not healthy for us, but we don't have the economic means to move out.

      Has anybody ever done anything legally about psychological abuse from a parent? I am so tired.. so tired. I worry about my daughter. Even though I know this is not my fault sometimes I think I'm going to crack..

      I have gone through so much psychological abuse and manipulation that I find it hard to be the mother I want to be. My daughter loves me and we have the relationship I always longed to have with my own mother. But things are getting out of hand and I just don't know what to do or how.

      I'm all ears and welcome any advice.

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      Dana444 5 years ago


      Thank you so much for your response...It is inspiring to me to hear how you did it and how your feeling..I am so glad that your at peace...

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      Sonya123 5 years ago

      Good for you, Dana! Breaking free of your NM is one of the hardest things a person can do. I don't even drink and my NM told my family, including my young nieces, that I am a "closet alcoholic". I can only imagine if I did drink, the lies she would spread. I saw myself through her distorted view for many, many years. When my daughter and husband refused to visit her anymore, I had to take a good look at what was going on. I didn't know the true meaning of a narcissist. My daughter was 9 when she told me she didn't want to visit my NM anymore. When I asked her why, she said "grandmother is fake". Your word exactly! It has been a year of no contact and I have never been more at peace. It makes it harder when your siblings try to make you feel bad for not talking to the NM. They can hang around her and be tormented all they want. We had the courage to get away. I hope they enjoy what she has in store for them. Hugs to you. Sonya

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      Dana444 5 years ago

      When I finally realize my mom is a NP was about 2 1/2 years ago. I read a book that saved my life literally "When will I be good enough" I got mad sad and just hurt inside, but at the same time I found healing. I went through hell with the trauma and the pain she has inflicted on me for years. I did no contact for awhile just to get suck back BELIEVING she had changed her ways some. Not a chance. First chance she got when I was vunerable that a friend of mine tried to to kill herself by hanging and lived now has a brain injury and in a nursing home. I have known her for about 30 +years anyway I am telling her about this and she had nothing to say postive or helpful or even one thing to be supportive. I asked why no thought about me and I qoute she said " I didnt know her"// WTF. of course screw me I forgot I was talking about my feelings not hers. Her contunial put downs and preying on my weakness just to put a slinger on my shortcommings. She has traingluation with my sisters and have been through a smear campaign during a socalled family reunion she had and didnt invited me blanteley lie to me . I have drank on and off through the years (learned it from her) I drank too much last visit to her house she made a huge deal of it we got into an agrument and I fly from Palm springs back to orlando. Anyway that was 2 years ago . Mind you she has been drunk more times in family fuctions than i can tell you. But with the NP they dont have any flaws...NP take 0 resposnbility for the tornado acting in your life but for them they think they are justified in their actions. Anyway I got an email from my aunt and she told me about this email that my mom sent to everyone OMG it was so shocking to me how she went into elbrate details of her love of the family and how beautiful Beamont is (Where her mother grew up who has passed) and tjhat is where the reunmion was going to be. Well in that email were all family members email address. Yes i sent out to everyone how she lied to me and didnt tell me about this reunion. Here comes the smear campaign I got emails from her brother and sister about my drinking.. I left my mom a shitty phone call after wards I guess she saved it and played it for her brother when he visisted. Then she called my aunt and I quote "I dont want a drunk there" Are you freaken serious? So she had her over the top celbration where she could be the center of attention. I feel (I learned that word in therapy!) I feel that she lies and can talk to me right in my face and lie and the hardest part if when she saids me girts and I know its for a need to be needed and not for love. That she is incapable of love and that hurts at times. She hit the juackpot with a man she married 5 years ago all about the money and the image. I have learned alaot about myself and healing and my faith has set me free in alot of areas where as before the words she spoke killed my spirit and drove me to destruction thinking and behaving. I have made a choice once again as I heal that I have to stay away from here. I feel that is hard at times. My fantasy bonding is over and I grieved deeply over that. I had to go through the pain and feel it and it was awaful and I pray I may never feel that pain again. As I contunie on my path of healing I for myself saty away I cannot seem to have a "fake" relationship any longer. I have no family I talk to exceopt I do talk to my dad and his wife sometimes. I know my mom has slammed me with family and my sisters who I yearn for at times. The damage of us daughters and sons who have had to endure the NP destruction way of relating is all the same except we are all different people. That is why we all understand each other. I will pray for us all for complete healing of this trauma of the NP in our lives. I never though I could heal I did and you can too. Its a long journey but you are the most important person in your own lifes no matter what the NP saids. Do not look at yourself through her DISTORTED view. Cutting contact is a must for me , but I am not willing to save face any longer.

      I know that NP had terribley damaging mom or dad in there life, and they are damaged themselves. But it takes courage to change. we are the lucky ones really because we want to heal and we know that the NP knows what they are doing too and chooses not to heal. But bleed on everyone else. In a strange way I feel confident in my relationship wuith God because there is no condemnation with God and I found out through him what uncondtional love is. I thank Him everyday. I stand alone and I am ok with that. (Family) They are strangers to me my sisters and they are ok with excluding me and that tells me everything I need to now. No empathy=a true narississtic and my sisters are just like her. I am so grateful I didnt turn out like them and I have had a very seriously hardcore childhood and teenage years possbile its the people who suffer so much that truly see things that others dont. And we seek the truth and seek healing.

      God Bless Dana

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      Sonya123 5 years ago

      My NM shows no interest in human suffering, but calls her cats "her kids". She talks to them like they are her babies.

      However, when she gets agitated, which is several times a day, she will hit and scream at her animals just like she did her children. It is almost as though she had to get "replacements" once her children grew up. Now her poor animals have to suffer instead.

      When one of her cats favors my Dad, who is elderly and still lives with this evil woman, she will "diagnose" it with some life-threatening disease and insist that it be put down. She then tries to call her kids to tell them how sad she is that her cat had to be put down - just to get sympathy.

      She will stop at nothing. Anything for attention, she will do it. She also tries to "one-up" everyone who has an illness.

      I have had no contact for one year. I am glad that I am not an only child, because all but one of my siblings have stopped contact as well. It reassures me that she is the problem, not me.

      When I did visit, (before no contact) she would say terrible things about my Dad with him sitting right there. I would get angry and leave. She would then call my work the following day and tell me that if I ever wanted to see my Dad again, I had better rush right over because he was very ill. Of course, I dropped everything at work to get to their house to check on my Dad. I walked in and he was sitting in his chair, reading the paper!

      I got my NM to another room and asked her why she had called me in such a panic when obviously, my Dad was fine. She said "Oh, you should have seen him a little while ago. He looked like he was about to die!" Lies, lies and more lies.

      To this day, she calls me several times a week and leaves voice messages, telling me she loves me, etc., but I refuse to ever speak to her again.

      She was also very bad about smiling to my face and then saying dreadful things about me to my other siblings. She did this with her grandchildren (all of whom refuse to visit or call her) as well.

      I would hire someone to take care of whatever your mother needs - errands, groceries, etc., and give yourself a break from her.

      Your mother's actions remind me more of my grandmother. She was a hypochondriac and suffered from paranoia and delusions. She wasn't physically abusive like my mother, but her words could cut very deep. She was also an attention seeker and constantly talked about her bad health.

      You are helping your mother because you are a good daughter. I did this for a long time as well. I also felt obliged to visit her often and listen to her hours of talking about herself on the telephone on a daily basis, even though I have a full-time job and many other obligations.

      I was in my 40's before I decided to cut ties with her. Her phone calls made me physically ill. Visiting her meant putting up with her verbally abusing my Dad right in front of me. I knew what I had to do to save myself.

      I hope that things get better with you and your mother. If she is a narcissist, the odds are very slim that she will ever change or admit fault in any way.

      It is not an easy decision for a daughter to cut ties with her mother, but for me, it was necessary to save my sanity. I feel like an adult for the first time in my life.

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      greatfire1666 5 years ago

      I have read several of the posts here. I am not even sure that my Mother falls into this category but would appreciate some comments.

      I am an only child, adopted. My mother is very elderly and has been obsessed by her own health since I was a very small child. As the years have passed, this obsession has meant that she has not interest in anything or anyone else, unless they are happy to spend hours listening to her.

      As a child, she wasn't too bad but she did often threaten to have me taken away if I was naughty. As I knew that I was adopted, and she often said the letter to have me collected had been sent, this did make me quite insecure.

      She also accused everyone of trying to steal from her or taking things. I didn't doubt this when I was younger but this has deteriorated as I have got older and in recent years she tells anyone who will listen that I am also doing this. I am a lawyer and she has threatened to tell the police and "make sure that you never work again". Following these difficulties, I did have a period of months when I refused to have any contact with her but she begged me to get back in contact claiming that she had never intended to do this and would never do it again. Not suprisingly, she continues to repeat these accusations to anyone who will listen.

      I have two children, the youngest has disabilities. She is so obsessed with her own health that she often tries to compete with him, claiming to be more deaf (he has a severe hearing loss) and so on. Otherwise, she shows little interest in him or any of us.

      As an only child and as she has very few people who are interested in spending time with her, I feel obliged to continue to provide some support. I visit, but dread it, as she makes me so angry. She is so loving towards me when I am there but horrible about me behind my back, I realise because this gives her sympathy from others.

      She shows no interest in the unhappiness or sufferings of other people but is obsessed with animals and often claims to cry for hours if she hears that someone's cat has died. She showed no emotion at the passing of my father and has made several pronouncements of his behaviour during their marriage claiming that he slept with hundreds of women and beat her.

      Naturally, her comments create false memories of him. Any comments would be much appreciated.

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      Sonya123 5 years ago

      I was in my 40's before I was able to accept that my mother was mentally ill -a narcissist and/or psychopath. I have had no contact with her in over a year even though we live only 5 miles apart. I pray that I never see her in public. My childhood was a living hell. My grandmother told me that my mother slapped my face when I was 2 days old. She then abandoned me and my sister for almost a year. She left us with a babysitter and just didn't come back. When she did get us back, she continued to leave us with strangers, screamed constantly, told us how worthless we were. We dared not stand close to each other because she would sometimes scream "you two are so godda**ed stupid, I'm going to knock your heads together!". And then she would. She ranted constantly and slapped and punched and hit us daily. I became a total introvert and went through most of school without ever talking to anyone. I had no friends. I felt stupid and unworthy of even one friend. I certainly couldn't have friends over. I didn't want anyone to know about my home life. My Dad was abused by her too. He was too scared of her to defend us. He would just say "don't hit them in the face". By the grace of God, I got away from her at 18. I met my husband and we are still happily together 30 years later. The only thing she taught me was how NOT to be like her. I know how to love and receive love. My daughter asked me how I could be such a good mother when I had such a horrible mother. Nothing has ever made me feel so good. The fact that my childhood didn't make me a bad parent is a miracle. When I decided to break all ties with my mother, I talked to my inner child and told her that I would never let mother hurt her again. I would give myself hugs and could feel the hurt little girl in me start to heal. I hope that doesn't sound too crazy, but it worked for me. I found the strength to never speak to my mother again. I try not to hate her. I have only sympathy for her because she is mentally ill. My sister became schizophrenic and she is still being victimized by mother. I have tried to convince her that our mother doesn't love us or anyone else but her mental illness won't allow her to see things clearly. My dad still lives with this mad woman. She is abusive to him but I can't save him. If I reported her, he would say it never happened. He is that brain-washed. It isn't easy to let go of your mother, but it is necessary to save yourself. Other family members won't understand. She seems charming and sweet to them. That's not my problem. I have to be strong and take care of myself and heal the damaged child that the monster tortured. It feels like a ton of bricks have been lifted from me. I have accepted the fact that she will die one day, and even then, I will know that I have done the right thing by staying away. There is no way to stay sane with someone like her in my life.

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      Eureka... 5 years ago

      I feel so relieved knowing I am not alone in this world. I can relate to everyone's comments regarding NM. I always knew something was different with my mother at very young age. Every conversation, family get together, or any other special events/holidays MUST revolve around her. If its not about her, she doesn't want any part in it. My childhood was very painful and just plain sad living with her. I constantly pray and try to block some of the painful memories in my mind, but every so often they reappear. I'm now in my 30's and I have realized my NM will probaly never change. Its very hurtful because I love her, but not her negative and controlling ways.

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      Kayleigh 5 years ago

      I have always wondered my mother has always been so cruel and cold hearted towards me growing up, never the type of mum to give you a hug or praise you when you have done right. (instead bringing up something your sister "the golden child" has done lately and completely dismissing you. I discovered that she was a NM yesterday at the age of 20 and I am so glad that I have discovered this early on in life. She has a few nice days now and then when she will ask you to go somewhere nice or out shopping. I think it is out of guilt for things she says such as wishing she had an abortion, bringing up how she hates my father & his side of the family I met when I was 16 etc etc. I would love to cut all ties her with her but my 87 year old grandfather lives with her and I love him to pieces he has always been there for me whilst growing up and is such an inspiration and I know she will never let me see him if I cut ties.

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      kelj 5 years ago

      I def do not have kids, I think my parents' bad ways put me off having kids. I like my life as it is though. I think I would be a good mum, but I am so cautious about children; it's a massive decision and very heavy responsibilty.

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      OnlyChild 5 years ago

      To just figured it out: N controlling ways are something on which we all have to police ourselves. As I write this I touch my shame. It's very hard to admit that at times I may act exactly as the woman who abused me...but it is the chemistry of this disorder. Our mothers became what they became because of something they did not get as children. You can not give, what you do not get. And that is why we are all reading this now. We did not get, what we needed from our mothers. And as they say...the cycle continues. The hope lies in that we are AWARE that this exists. Our mothers were not aware. I have no children (and I would be very interested in finding out how many of you do not have children). This was my subconscious way of making sure the cycle ended. I would have done the same things to my children (had I had any) that my mother did to me. You don't figure it out until you are older (and too old to have children).

      To answer your question, when I catch myself being controlling I say to myself..."Aahh there it is. There is your wound." I try to be sympathetic to myself and say "Come on, you can do better than that." I remind myself that other folks did not experience the world as I did. No need for such control. It only gives you away to them as one of the "wounded".

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      BRENDA 5 years ago


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      just figured it out 5 years ago

      I would like to throw out a question. Does anyone catch themselves using N controlling ways? What do you do when you see this happening?

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      BRENDA 5 years ago


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      kelj 5 years ago

      My parents never have taken any repsonsibility; too caught up in their own lives to give a monkeys about what I am doing and how we might have felt. Never have they admitted their actions, or how their actions might have had some effect on my or my sister's emotional being. The man called my father, favoured me over my sister, and my mum favoured my sister over me. Ultimately, this has kind of pitted my sister and I against each other, and even as adults, our relationship has suffered greatly because of idiotic parenting. My mum's side don't understand what I am like, and just because I am different, I get judged because I am not like them. My dad I don't speak to, because he just abused me emotionally down the phone too much, and didn't me any emotional good whatsoever.

      I feel like moving away, but I know I am not the problem, these an parents and people are. I deal with the hurt, just by getting on with what I do and being me, and living my life trying hard to ignore the anxiety and bad feelings. I have negative feelings, which inside make me feel sour and bad towards the family, in what they do and grandiose announcements they make, insinuating how much better they are than me and my life; now I try and ignore it, so it doesn't annoy me, and let them be; a kind of Buddhist approach, clear the mind, let them go, let them be. That is the way they are; they will never admit to being N people. And I waste my time trying to please them, or caring about their behaviour. I wait for the day when I can move away from the area they live in.

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      Catinboots 5 years ago

      Thank goodness for this. I am following this hub with the realisation that I am not alone and that it's not me, it's my NM.

      Thankyou to everyone for sharing your experiences. I can't tell you how relieved I am to have found this site and this article. I am following with much interest and understanding that I am not alone.


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      just figured it out 5 years ago

      Yes you did the right thing.

      It is a classic move for an alcoholic to blame others about her drinking. You don't have to be there for someone who recreates your reality to the point where the facts you observe are denied, so the N can continue living in her world. In other words, her reality is not yours. It will make you increasingly crazy (and it sounds like it has literally made you sick) if you continue to claim it. In her mind she is a victim, and her N personality will never allow her to take one iota of responsibility. I see my own mother doing this, and it gets worse with age and money involved. Love to you, Heartbroken!!

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      Heartbroken 5 years ago

      I finally spoke to my NM on the phone today after avoiding her calls. I was so hurt, as mentioned previously, that she had decided to invest her entire savings into an annuity, so that she would have enough money for herself until she is 100! Of course the annuity did not leave anything, and even if something happened to her in the next few years (she is 84) the money would all be gone. When I attempted to explain this to her, she didn't seem concerned at all. Two days later she told me that she had decided to go ahead and invest in the annuity despite the fact that I am struggling and not in great heath. Her excuse............."Well, alot of people put work into this transfer, I cannot change it now." Obviously, she is more concerned about the financial manager than her own daughter. The pain I felt was so immense, I am sure you can all understand. I cried for days and realized I had to break off all ties with this woman who was continually hurting me.

      Anyway, I did speak to her today and explained the pain I have been through. Of course, she told me that she decided not to go with the annuity after all, and the only reason she was going to was so she would never be a burden on me. I also told her of the pain I felt when she accused my husband and I of not loving her when we confronted her on her drinking. She told us that was the reason that she drank! As usual, it all came back to me..............."I never realized how much you hated me........apparently I am not the mother you think I should be, I just want to die now." She then hung up on me.

      My God, I am a 65 year old woman and this is one of the first times I ever told her how I reaaly felt. I always felt that I had to protect her, and felt guilty if I was not always there for her. I do feel that this conversation was very freeing for me, however, the pain is still ther, and I can't help but pity her.

      I hope one of you can reinforce for me that I did the right thing and that the pain will subside. I do not plan on anymore contact with her.

      I am so glad to have found this site. It has enpowered me and proven to me that I am not the crazy one. Thank you all for the support.

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      just figured it out 5 years ago

      I also wanted to add that I am under the impression that there is a continuum of N behaviors. I suspect that my experience is on the lower end. My older sibs and I figured Mom suffered from undiagnosed depression/anxiety. Her controlling, critical and angry behaviors were because that had never been addressed. I now believe she is an N.

      Thank you so much for all who have revealed this painful history. It has been the most educative and validating late night reading I have ever done. I am working hard to support myself, and pay my own rent!

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      just figured it out! 5 years ago

      At 51 I have just figured this out. While reading these comments, the light slowly dawns and I recognize my dear sick mom for who she is. I am the youngest of 4, definitely a people pleaser and trained at an early age to be codependent.

      My mother cn be charging and delightful, and I adored her as a child. But she never had many close friends or hobbies, was terribly critical and harsh, sometimes physically abusive, and had a very low tolerance for me being different than she was. At almost 90 she has alienated 2 of my 3 siblings, because her behavior has worsened since my fathers death. My borderline mentally ill brother at 55 fathered a child by a younger woman who was addicted to drugs. The woman went through treatment, won custody of the child, and my mother believes all is well and wonderful.

      The mother of his child has a long arrest record and was arrested for prostitution when she was nearly 5 months pregnant with my brother's child. The child was 8 months old and in foster care when the mother contacted my brother.I think it is naive to believe all will be well and this has a happy ending.

      My mother has decided to provide my brother with the support/help she was providing me, as I moved out of my ex-husbands house quickly several years ago. I have been most grateful, express it frequently and last we talked she told me she would do it" as long as she was still able to". On Easter sunday this year, she wanted to tell my young teenagers of my brothers baby the day after I had learned of it.When I asked to wait until we knew more (paternity had not been confirmed) she flew into a rage, said things about me that left me speechless and told me she was no longer going to provide support for my rent. This hub has helped me understand that I am the scapegoat, and my brother is the GC. My other two sibs want as little as possible to do with her.

      My problem is 1) I still really love this woman, and find myself forgiven g her daily. She to me seems powerless and a little pathetic. I would still like to maintain contact with her. ADVICE?

      2) Is it possible for someone with a history of intractable addiction to recover after i stint in treatment? Her arrests included theft by swindle and domestic assault. My brother has an arrest record, a miner one, as well. Ugh. This hub has been so freeing!

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      kelj 5 years ago

      For those who have a an NM or an ND, it is hard work. I have ended up going NC with my alcoholic father. I have limited contact with my NM and my younger siblings who are also showing traits of N as well. I have been the family scapegoat for as long as I can remember, I have posted on here before in times of complete and utter bloody anguish; pain tearing right through my heart and crying till I thought I could cry no more. I realise now that I will never gain their approval, nor do I want it anymore. If these N people don't realise the true beauty in you, then they are not worth it. As mush as it hurts, it is soul-piercing and terrifying, and anxious all at once. Things will not change for me, my NM will not change her behaviour, she is now 53 and my ND is 54 and been drinking for years, regressing and being the victim, not being responsible for his kids for most of their lives. Things have turned out how they are, and I will spend more time thinking and hoping that things will be different, because they won't. The best thing I can do, is get on, celebrate who I am, and my friends; and the people that love you for you, they are your true family. And be yourself, be free and don't be held down by the bad voices in your head and in the N atmosphere.xxxx love to you all.

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      BRENDA 5 years ago


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      BRENDA 5 years ago


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      HEARTBROKEN 5 years ago

      At age 63 I finally accepted the fact that I have a narcisstic mother. I think I always knew, but was unable to accept the fact that my mother does not love me. I have suffered so much from her selfish, mean behavior, but like so many of you, often blamed myself. I was always the "Mom" in my family and felt responsible for everyone's happiness., especially hers. Today, I suffer from fibromyalgia and a lifetime of underserved guilt and responsiblity. The last straw came today, when she told me that she has invested all her money (recieved from the sale of a condo she obtained from the divorce of her 2nd husband) in an annuity that will keep her funded until she is 100 years old! She, of course, fees terrible that there will be nothing left for my brother or I (even though we both have health issues and financial problems), but she needs the money to live on. To finally face the fact that no matter how much you have loved and tried to obtain love from someone so cold and unresponsive who has continually slapped you in the face for your efforts, is not only heartbreaking, but disgusting. I feel sick. I have wasted so many years trying to pretend I had a loving mother. Please...............DO NOT fall into this trap. You will be hurt beyond comprehension. If you know what you're mother is, stop contact immediately. Hopefully you will be spared the broken heart I have.

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      Kim 5 years ago

      I learned my mom is a narcissist about a year ago, thanks to my cousin. Alot of things from my past now make sense to me. How can a so called mother be so self centered. My birthday was last week, she mails me a gift, of course it is a shirt, that she would like, not me. I am going back to the store and exchanging, without her knowing. I have not confronted my mother and after reading all these posts, its better that I don't. I do keep my distance, even though she lives an hour away, she only talks to me if I call her. She never calls me. And her 2 grandsons barely know her. The times that she has invited me over to her house, is when it is conveinent to her and only me. If it doesnt go her way, forget it. I could go on and on.

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      GoodOne 5 years ago

      Amazing. Can take an example from each post and think, same here..thats same thing happened. Left home at 16, enabler dad, tried suicide,phone calls me me me me how r u oh have to except my brother is same way. OMG two N's. But interesting how we all seem to have a strentgh to survive the cruelty. I too raised my kids opposite and with much self esteem, thing is they are grown and out of the house and memories of my childhood make me cry on the spot and even though I cut ties with the witch, it is coming back. Im sure from empty nest syndrome and have more time to think. Just dont understand how a mother doesnt have sense to pick up a crying baby( me..adopted and the caregiver even told her I am sensitive and have patience and hold alot)so she leaves me screaming til im blue and til i no longer even bother anymore. And now she gets mad we have no bond. well duh,,, you stupid witch. And all those critical statements when im just trying to grow. I get mad because I could have been so much more with a normal mom and frustrated at 48 I am still the same sad teenager. Except know Im also mad. Does it ever end?? The flashbacks of her stupidity? I never talk to her so even when she dies it will probably be the same. How do I get the stupid mean evil witch out of me head???

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      nakedfighter 5 years ago

      Well... my gut wrenching, negative, destructive, despotic, manipulative, vindictive, cruel, self centered, cold as metal, indifferent, out to get me...MOMMY, is also a psychopedagogist: she "helps people, (mostly young children and teens), with their emotional problems." Talk about feeling trapped with NO WAY OUT! My mother's mad rationalizations came with a degree!!!

      I had NO CHANCE.: 48,never been married, a chain of icy men-narcissists as a cruel reminder of "who's the boss". S. A. D.

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      Chris 5 years ago

      Hi. mum 89. Im 64. Just worked. out mums NPD. My sis and wife have gone through hell.

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      APG (soaptalk AT hotmail DOT com) 6 years ago


      Has anyone here ever encountered a person who

      suffers (or causes others to suffer) from an odd

      case of 'Golden Uterus' Syndrome (GUS)?



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      guest 6 years ago

      I have a very NM. SHe is narcissistic to the core. Where I come from you cannot leave the parents house unless you are married. I am 30 & still single.. My dad actually creates problems with me & my mother. My sister & my brother do understand but they live far away & are happy.. And as far as my parents are concerned they are the best. My parents tried to give me away for adoption to my uncle when I was a kid but it didnt work out. I always spend my time in my room... all my friends are married and live away. I cant make any new friends because she will think I am having affair with everyone of them. She even called me whore once. only thing keeping me going is knowing this will end... I can only hope it will soon because I am out of patience...

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      Nina-g 6 years ago


      I have a NM and had an ND. NM is manipulative mainly specializing in psychological warfare. He was manipulative and violent. The problem I had was I believed that it was all my dad. My mum played the victim well and even though deep down I wasn't convinced I defended her through it all.

      My ND used to beat my sister and I for petty things. I remember after one of the beatings my NM shook her head in disgust at me like I had asked for it. On that occasion I had threatened to call the police because I thought my ND was going to kill my sister the way he was beating her. I got my father's 'attention' by going for the phone so I got beaten and my brother(golden child) joined in. I was about 10.

      I am mixed race so I grew up with alternating 'white bastard' 'paki' comments from both parents. Ironically I now have vitiligo. So I am both white bastard and paki now...

      Obviously through triangulation the family is split. She still uses this.

      I went through various periods of low self-esteem through my life. I was a straight A grade student but I was talented in art but my parents wanted me to do something academic so that I 'had something to fall back on'. When I got good grades- there was silence or 'why did you get one 'B'' grade. My other scapegoat sister's nickname was 'D grader'. Golden child got money for whatever grades he got. And a deposit for a house, etc.

      My father died a few years ago. Since then I have been the supply.

      NM has been staying at my small flat for 6 months and I have gone from someone with a pretty positive outlook on life- despite everything I think I am a fighter- to someone who drinks half a bottle of whisky a day and sleeps until 3pm. I constantly have fantasies about death and how relaxed it would make me feel.

      My NM has accused me of sabotaging her life. She has said I have kept her prisoner. Then she has said I am throwing her out. I have just been making a list of my life and everything she has undermined me with.

      Today she called me a bitch. I have done so much for this woman when she has been ill and I dropped my life for her. I put her before myself, my partner, everybody.

      I am 40 now. The night before my birthday I went out with my partner and she spent the whole evening texting me how nasty I am and what a failure.

      I don't have children because I have been looking after her. Now I think of my age and all this going through my head- she says 'your type can't have children'. Then if I do indeed have children she has decided 'I don't want your grandchildren'.

      I could go on. Oh yeah- I am also a product of rape. Amongst other things.

      I only discovered this week that I have a NM and had a ND. I feel a bit weird and I cried all last night. I have been crying a lot. In my tiny flat with her dominating this is even difficult.

      When my NM gave me a birthday card this year I was so shocked after the texts. But the card was one of those cards that lists all your talents on the front and then you open it and it says something like 'you inherited it all from me'. She has taken the card back anyway.

      My partner and I have hired a car to take her home tomorrow. She has told me 'get out of my life!'. It's all confusing because she won't get out of my flat. Illogic. Hopefully after tomorrow things will be brighter for me although my younger sister(ignored by ND/ secondary but recently promoted to primary golden child) does not believe me. NM has already threatened to turn my damaged sibling relationships(which have only recently been healing) against me with her 'truth'.

      Who knows.

      Thank you for the article.

      Thank you everyone for comments.

      I am not alone.

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      Ron 6 years ago

      Hi, I enjoy going through your hub, I wanted to write a little comment to support you and wish you good hubbing.

      Ron from Fitness Tips

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      Aria 6 years ago

      My father fit ABSOLUTELY EVERY THING you wrote here. Unfortunately, I'm still living at home, but trust me when I say I'm doing my best to leave. So thank you for your article. At least I'm not the only one who's gone through this, and that it wasn't necessarily because my best was little more than a failure.

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      Only Child 2 6 years ago

      Debbie, how can your NM take your daughter without your permission? I don't know your situation, but if you believe she is an NM, start now to set and keep boundaries, and consider whether NC or LC is best. When my sons were little, I was fortunate that my NM lived far away, and never wanted to watch them when she visited because she was "on vacation." Read about what an NM is, and develop the plan that works for you and your daughter. Realize that your NM will always be more interested in herself than anyone else. Keep your life your own, and don't expect anything from your NM, then you won't be disappointed.

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      Debbie Steckman 6 years ago

      Hi group...I think I have a Narcissistic mother. She takes my daughter without my permission and never tells me...I guess she feels entitled. She will give me a compliment every one in a while but then states she would have done it such and such a way. Every thing is I,I, I......I am so sick of it. What can I do?

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      AngeLife 6 years ago from Almost Heaven

      So glad to have found this Hub Page. I've been a member for a few years but this is a wonderful revelation and a pleasure to find. Thank you to the original author and to all the rest who have bared their souls here. I'm a member of this club, too, and even with my mother dead, the anger and pain are still there. Distance helps you heal - if you are in contact with your NM, get away as soon as you can. I find it amazing that people put up with 90-some odd year old NMs living in their home, not speaking to them, but they put up with these mentally ill women. Get out now! Extricate yourself immediately. Stop tolerating it. Do it NOW! Get out and stay away from her forever. She doesn't deserve your love or interest and never will. Give up and put her in a nursing home or leave. But don't put up with it a moment longer. Thanks for reading this. Love to you all! You rock!!!

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      MCA 6 years ago

      Had my first counseling session today. There is no law out there that we need to love our mothers. They really haven't earned it. My assignment for this week is to substitute "I feel angry" for "I feel guilty". Thank you for your posts and honesty.

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      CaliforniaGirl 6 years ago

      Example for my mother's behaviour:

      She came to visit me in California from Europe.

      My whole story is here on this page, just scroll further up.

      She had dumped me, when I was 13, didn't care anymore, even though I had very difficult times. She never came to visit alone, and hardly ever at all.

      California must have sounded like a fun trip, plus she wanted to meet my new husband.

      My birthday was two weeks before she came.

      She gave me a "present", which was a bustier (underwear) that actually looked good, but I later identified as something she showed me while I visited her two years before. She said it doesn't fit her.

      My mother's birthday present!

      For the occasion she bought herself two new leather jackets, as if she expects to get an "Oscar".

      And a new camera.

      When I read about the cheap gifts being a typical NM thing, it made it easier to accept.

      BTW She always sended me stuff (if at all) that appeared to be trash that they don't want anymore.

      The bustier was actually one of the nicer things.

      Right now I still hate her, but mostly I'm sorry.

      What a sorry person.

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      CaliforniaGirl 6 years ago


      I agree.

      What helped me so far was reading about NMs and realizing how predictable and textbook-like their behaviour is.

      That makes it less personal and is more a symptom of a condition than a real mother-daughter relationship.

      When it is less personal, it is also less emotional, and the hate goes away.

      Just my theory, I'm not there yet.

      But right now I find it actually laughable how my mother's behaviour is listed as typical narcissistic (mother) behaviour.

      How banal.

      How ridiculous.

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      trish 6 years ago

      The one thing to avoid at all costs is hate. I have seen hate destroy people, they let the hate of the narcissistic mother or both parents take root and take over completely. It has totally ruined their lives, nothing else matters to them now. The narcissistic ones will never be any better, even when they appear to be good they are coming from the same place.

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      mmm 6 years ago

      ". A narcissistic mother may only care about herself, but if their child achieves (despite great odds) any measure of success in any area, she will automatically claim credit. For example, I was recently published under a pen name and made the colossal blunder of mentioning this to my mother. Rather than congratulate me, the first words out of her mouth were: "Of course you were published. You get that from me." Get what? As far as I know, the last time my mother wrote anything was an essay at school. But to listen to her, if I had another mother, I would never have been published"

      Oh my gosh, my mother did the exact same thing, word for word!!! I have never heard somebody tell my exact experience like that.

    • Pyretta2 profile image

      Pyretta2 6 years ago from Whitney, Ontario

      Thank you for this article. My grandmother and Mother are both narcissistic. My mother will call after speaking to her Mother, complaining. All I can think of is "you do or say the same to me" We only have one mother and we can't change people. Can only change how we respond or let them effect us.

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      Only Child 2 6 years ago


      I actually smile when you say that people want you to stand up for yourself, but not up to them. DH took some lessons from himself, and with a sense of humor we have made it past the precipice of adjusting to the "new me." It DOES take some adjustment, more on their part than ours, I suspect. But the real family and friends will hold fast to you, and the ne'er do wells will fall away when they aren't the center of your attention.

      I have a "friend" like that right now. She spends all of her time talking about herself and correcting me, and I can hear her audible breath of disinterest if I ever talk about anything in my life, even for a few moments. I never noticed it until after I realized that my mother was an NM. It truly hit home when after a conversation with this "friend", I found myself saying, "If I need someone to beat me up, I'll call my mother." That speaks volumes.

      Our NMs make sure we have a vast divide of insecurity so they can reel us in to their bidding. I think each of us has to allow ourselves the time to rebuild, and that process is excruciating because we're afraid we won't like the product. But now that I am starting to experience some peace and contentment in myself, I'm liking this product more and more because I finally trust myself to Be myself. Even if bad things happen, I can handle it after what I've been through with my own mother.

      The future is only as bright as your you.

      Thank you for making me think and feel about where I have been, and where I am headed.

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      KambingLibre 6 years ago

      @justthethird - thanks for the book recommendation, I have ordered it. @only child 2 - thanks for your wise words. You are so articulate and warm.

      The kindness on this forum is very healing, I think it commends us all that, despite (or because of?) what we have been through that we can reach out to each other rather than lashing out at the world. They say ‘hurt people hurt people’, I consider it a sign of enlightenment to have avoided perpetuating that cycle.

      When I read up on NPD I found it depressing to see just how much of the way I am was ‘written’ by my NM. It made me wonder how much of me is really ‘me’- whether I exist at all or am just a programmed Nsupply robot, and it made me hate myself even more because I am so much NM’s creation. Even now that she is gone I feel like her toxic legacy.

      @Justthethird - You are right about learning dysfunctional coping mechanisms - lately I have been catching myself on the way I respond to potential conflict situations (Try to fix everything! Capitulate! Immediately!) and how I let people treat me. I have to take ownership for that and change it. Sometimes I feel as if there is just too much to fix, that I need to unpick every stitch of my fabric: even after counselling and self-help I keep catching myself defaulting to classic scapegoat behaviours. It is mortifying, and the eternal vigilance needed to avoid doing it is exhausting and dispiriting.

      Trying to restructure existing relationships is one of the hardest things, esp when you love the person and don’t want them to be upset with you. Our patterns of behaviour are so ingrained and, even though I have changed, it doesn’t mean other people have. In the past so many people have told me to stand up for myself more, but it is clear now that certain folks never meant it to mean that I should stand up to THEM. I know I am a bit more prickly and sensitive at the moment, after being such a compulsive-helper / people-pleaser for so long it is probably a bit unwelcome that I am standing my ground and pushing back.

      My NM is now dead (and I will soon have enough money to restructure my life), I will be divorced from my Nhusband by the end of the year and I am on my way to freedom – why do I still often feel so hollow and afraid of my future, as if I am going to screw it up? I wish I could trust myself not to let me down.

      On a good day I can see how far I’ve come and I feel like a phoenix rising from the ashes, right now I just feel like a bleating scapegoat. I am spending a lot of time at NM’s house at the mo, sorting through her stuff – it’s like she’s inside my head again. I feel like I am suffering from PTSD when I am alone there: acute anxiety, anger, depression and a suffocating trappedness. I hope these feelings will subside when her house is sold and I don’t have to go there anymore.

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      justthethird 6 years ago

      @KambingLibre please don't hate yourself for stuff you cannot/could not control.

      For everyone reading this, I recommend a book I downloaded on my Kindle from Amazon: The Narcissistic Family: Diagnosis & Treatment. I d/l it about 5 days ago and finished it in 3 days. It's actually written for therapists, but it gives so much information useful for patients! It's like getting the "answers" in the teacher's version of a study book.

      There is a lot of healing I have left to do, but this book explains how to start some of it. @KambingLibre, one interesting technique mentioned in the book is to find a photo of yourself at a young age and to frame it and put it in a place you'll see it often. You are to love the child you see in that photo, and to give her gifts and good compliments. Realize that the child you see there was never supposed to have to pick up the burden she did, and that she did the best she could with what she had at the time. As an adult, you have many coping skills that may be dysfunctional and may put you in situations that you hate, but recognize that those coping skills were learned when you were young. And respect that those were the skills that got you to adulthood. Don't hate yourself for still employing them, just acknowledge that you needed them at one time, and now that you know better, you will move forward to learn new skills.

      Here's the book. A bit expensive in print ($35) but only $13 for Kindle and WELL worth it for me. I have so much to talk with my new therapist about when I meet her:

    • profile image

      Smallz 6 years ago

      @ onlychild: my mom has a whole wall of pictures in the living room plus picture frames on every table in the house. She also puts picture on her mirror. The weirdest part is she framed two 8x10's of herself and put them in the living room.


      I would try therapy with your daughters. I read that people with nm's tend to parent in the total opposite way cuz they're afraid of being just like their mom. In reality it's the same. Parenting should be about balance being too extreme on either side of the parenting spectrum is not good.

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      LL 6 years ago

      I had such a fucked up childhood, and I call my mom 2X a day, I have become her life line. What is worst I think I fucked up my children's life. I love my girls so much, and tried to praise all their efforts and acheivement, they are such beautiful women now , but can say they hate me and resent my presence in their lives. I THINK it's genetic!!! Call me crazy but I feel stuck in a life of misery. I gotta get a life, my children where my life...what do i do now

    • profile image

      Only Child 2 6 years ago

      Kambing Libre,

      I applaud you in what you have accomplished. You are truly free, and also have to accept that you were not an idiot at all. Our NMs groom us for this as children, and they do a very good job of it. It becomes a part of our psych, and even when we start to know better, it's hard to believe.

      We are stronger than we think, or give ourselves credit for. Why would we, when we were beaten down so badly and denied our mother's unconditional love?

      Love yourself unconditionally, and seek the best for yourself and from others. Give yourself time to heal, and it does take time, with good and bad days.

      I wish you and everyone else the best. This blog has been a lifeline for me, and changed my life in more ways than I can express. I'm still a work in progress with a long way to go, but that is life's journey and all mine now.

    • profile image

      KambingLibre 6 years ago

      Hello All

      I thank you all for your words of wisdom.

      I found out my mother was N nearly a year ago. I had given up my life to look after her after she was given 2 months to live (cancer). In the end she lived for 7 months which were the most painful yet revelatory months of my life. If I had not had the breakdown, I would probably not have sought help - learning about NPD was like being given a map and and half of an instruction manual on how to fix yourself.

      My love-life has always been imbalanced as I am a people-pleaser, desperate for approval. I ended up marrying a man with many N characteristics. I lived with his anger, disapproval, verbal abuse and bullying – I thought he loved me. It seemed normal to be viewed as a useless disappointment unless you are doing exactly what the other person wants. Our marriage broke down at the beginning of last year. On a holiday with friends he told me he didn’t love me anymore and then refused to discuss it. I was a wreck.

      When I got back from holiday we found out NM had ‘two months at most’. When she got the diagnosis, I swear she was almost triumphant – now we would never be able to say no to her.

      I gave up my job, shelved my marital problems and went to live at her house without a second thought – I was very well conditioned to take care of her (even though she has a partner, it was still expected that there should be two of us to meet her every need even though she was mobile and sentient).

      After a couple of weeks I felt that I was circling the drain. Nothing I could do was right. She attacked me verbally, made me feel worthless, endlessly criticized and belittled me and made me feel as if I was never doing enough. Her control over my life was complete – I had to give 24hours notice to go to the shop at the end of the road. Even then I was screamed at and made to feel as if I had abandoned her. I was expected to listen to a litany of complaint followed by hours of self-aggrandizement and stories of other people’s jealousy towards her. She told me horrible sexual details of her life with (my deceased and beloved) dad and besmirched his memory whenever possible.

      For seven months I fed the rapacious need-monster with my soul. NM’s partner is sweet but totally weak, my sister (who lives abroad) came over a few times and was golden child even though I had done most of the caring. At first my sister could not see that it wasn’t just because I hadn’t tried hard enough. I was in our room crying uncontrollably at some casual cruelty NM had inflicted when my sister insisted I get help. It was the best thing I ever did.

      NM is gone now but I am still processing my past. I am getting a divorce. I still cannot believe I am 'free' and I nearly am - I just need to get their horrible, critical voices completely out of my head - my internal monologue can still be very negative and I need to be vigilant. Counselling and CBT have helped. I have also done a lot of internet research (esp. the DONM website) and it helps to know of all you other scapegoats out there.

      My sister (she is my twin) and I are v close and she can see what ma has done to me / us and feels guilty about her bullying me at NM’s instruction. I am still struggling with her a little because the assumption is that I will sort everything out all ma’s stuff, be the family administrator, dogsbody etc… even though my sister loves me and is not N she has a lot of ‘fleas’ – behaviours she picked up through having an NM. I need to readjust our relationship so she treats me with more thoughtfulness. It has to be 50/50 now.

      I am slowly adjusting my idea of ‘normal’ to something more positive. I am much less trusting of people’s motives now. I can see that I need to forgive and move on otherwise NM will continue to have a hold over me, but I still feel angry at my stolen childhood. I want to avoid attracting these people – I have been a magnet for them, maybe they can spot Nsupply from a mile off.

      Most of all I need to stop hating myself for being such an idiot not to have seen it before when it was there right in front of me.

    • profile image

      Only Child 2 6 years ago

      I read somewhere that some NMs are fascinated by pictures, and surround themselves with them as if they have a full life. That is so true of my NM, and whenever I give her pictures of my pets and our family, she has them proudly displayed all over her place. The same people she judges, condemns, and finds things wrong with.

      Recently she asked me for a picture of my niece, who she hasn't seen in years. I happened to have an extra, so I gave it to her. She put it on the mirror on her bedroom dresser. So odd. It is hard to understand crazy, even though we are living or have lived through it.

    • profile image

      Smallz 6 years ago

      ^^ she's just being passive aggressive which is common with NM's. It's hard to understand crazy so I wouldn't worry about it. It sounds like you are on the right track.

    • profile image

      justthethird 6 years ago

      Thanks to reading these comments while I was in CrazyLand with my NM, I was able to emerge from 5 days of losing my identity so I could be her daughter unscathed. In fact, as I left yesterday, NM said she couldn't remember when we've ever got along so well and she's had so much fun.

      How did I pull that off? I reminded myself constantly that to her I was nothing more than a mirror. When she shut down anything I said that wasn't about her, I didn't argue. I figured for 5 days I could let this pathetic woman believe she was the only one of us who was important.

      When she tried to pick fights with me, or exert control over me in the few ways she has left, I didn't rise to the bait.

      Now that I'm independent, married, happy and healthy on my own, she only controls one aspect of my life - stuff of hers that might be meaningful to me someday. I used to love her photo albums. I'd rush to look through them every time I visited, so naturally she told me she willed them to my brother. So on this visit, I didn't even pick them up or show interest in them.

      She told me that my favorite piece of furniture, that she had always promised me, was going to my brother this weekend. I said, "That's nice." She told me the diamond ring she's been promising me since I was 5 was going to her friend because, "You don't wear jewelry." (Even as I wore 2 rings on my fingers.) I said, "Well, that's good. I've got my engagement ring anyway."

      She told me she had a box of stuff for me to take home. While she was sleeping I looked through it and found it was all the nice letters I've written to her, my wedding invitation, stuff that I'd have thought she would want to keep. It hurt me tremendously that she wanted me to take it off her hands because, "It's junk I don't want around my house. You take it."

      I quickly threw it all in a bag and shoved it into the trunk of my car. She came in later and said, "Let's go through that box of junk I wanted you to take home." And I said, "Oh that? I didn't have time to look at it, too busy today, I just threw it in my car. I'll trash it when I get home."

      All these little mines she laid to get me upset, and I sidestepped them all like a pro. I'm glad I did. The irony for me is that she seemed to love that we had a nice visit. Why would she lay mines that (in the past) have caused us to fight and me to be upset, but then express happiness when I dodged them all? There's just no figuring out this crazy woman. I too will be glad when she and her drama are out of my life for good.

    • profile image

      Smallz 6 years ago

      Im about to leave home for good in about 2 weeks. I'll never speak to my NM again. It's for the best. She physically and mentally abused me as a child and denies to this day. I can't say I'll miss her because she was never in my life to begin with(ignoring mother.) I'm so lucky to have a father, step mom, aunt and uncle who support me. I hope all of you can find people in your lives who will be a positive support system.

      I always choose to look at the glass half full. I wish you all the best and lots of love! Thank you for sharing your stories.


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