Friday, February 25, 2011

Life With My Narcissistic Mother

After reading through living with a narcissist's blog entries, I felt like writing a little about my own experience of living with my NMother.

Living with your mother is supposed to be a source of some of one's fondest memories in life, right? Nice long talks over coffee, warm home-cooked meals, having fun just doing the simple things life together - these are probably some of the typical thoughts that come to mind when you think of society's depiction of the ideal mother anyone would be pleased to have.

I'd be lying if I said those things weren't part of my life. I'm not going to be unfair and paint my NM as a perpetual monster who is relentlessly abusive and cruel to me. I'd be nothing more than a gaslighting liar myself, no better than my NM. Yes, I can admit that my NM can be a great person to be around when she's in one of her good moods. She can be a lot of fun to talk to and has a way of giving me a sense of security and confidence when it comes to making decisions. All of my friends who talk to her on the phone/meet her often tell me how she's "so nice" and how much they like her.

That's because they don't know there's a catch to her kindness - it's fleeting and vanishes quicker than smoke when something doesn't go her way. So long as I appease her and do not put up an opposition in any way, shape, or form, my NM will maintain her "kindness mode" (as I like to term it) and these pleasant phases can last for very long stretches of time - which makes it very easy for me to fall into the same mistakes of telling her my innermost feelings and fears that serve as her weapons against me later in her aggressive attacks.

It's actually pretty surprising how little it takes for me to push my NM into one of her attack modes. It can be something as stupid as a disagreement over something on television. Basically any difference in opinion has the potential to lead into an escalating and gaslighting argument that may or may not include physical abuse and days of silent treatment afterwards.

But even when my NM and I are not fighting and she is in a good mood, life can still be unbearable because she is engulfing and has no sense of boundaries. She has no shame in looking through my personal belongings. I have to clear the history and cookies on my laptop every time I use it to ensure she won't stalk my internet activity. I have to put screen locks on my cell phone and iPod. I can't read certain books (for example, books on NPD) because she'd DEFINITELY find it.

I basically do not have any privacy - anything I do is up for complete questioning and my NM feels completely entitled to an answer. If I text someone on my phone or sees me typing, she asks who I write to. I actually find myself conditioned to telling her who I'm talking with and what I'm talking to them about before she even asks - which is truly a sick and abnormal reality.

It pretty much feels like my NM is a ticking bomb without a visible timer - you know she's bound to explode at some point, but you can never quite tell until you hear the huge boom. Every time my NM seems quiet or "weird", I get extremely uneasy and keep asking her if she's okay. I feel so scared that she is upset about something I am unaware about and that it's a matter of time before she explodes at me. It's a heavy, terrible feeling in the pit of my stomach - pure dread. If she's not raging at me, my NM loves the good old-fashioned silent treatment as her choice of torment. So I can never tell if my NM is mad at me or my father (he's just as much a victim of her as me) for something we "did to upset her" or if she is genuinely tired/worried about something unrelated to us and her NPD.

Living with her is one of the biggest challenges in my life because at times, she makes me feel like I am losing my mind. I look forward to the day that I'm free.


  1. Ok. This hits so close to home. Your conditioning to explain who were talking to and what you were talking about before it is asked, the snooping, the the uneasy feeling if she's being a little too quiet. UGH!
    I've asked, "Are you alright? Are you upset at me about something?" so many times under this roof I start to imagine the next owners of the house are going to hear it echoing in the hallways like a phantom voice.
    Honey... I feel for you.
    I think the similarities are interesting though. It really just goes to show you that we're dealing with a 'one stop shopping' diagnosis here. Amazing isn't it?

  2. "A one stop shopping diagnosis" is right. I would testify that Sugar's NM is the Momster, but the Momster didn't have Intermittant Counterfeit Empathy or Kindness w/me -- I believe she did w/my Nsibs, but w/me I received very little, almost none. I realized very early that she wore a Mask of Deception. I did not respond well to her Intermittant Countfeit Kindness, so she dropped that deception w/me and focused it on my younger Sibs that were still vulnerable to her Deception. I knew the Momster was not as she wanted others to believe. I just didn't realize what Lies behind the Mask until 1.5 yrs ago, or at least I didn't want to accept it. The Illusion I had to over come, or obliterate was the Potential for the NM to change, as we know their Pathology is Permanent.

    There will Always be attacks because it feels Good to them to be Evil, that is their twisted mind that creates the Toxic Relationship. They can not receive nor recipocate Love because they can not process it due to their lack of Empathy. They can only use and abuse Love, but never Enjoy it & return it. Their Counterfeit Love is about controlling us, by surrounding us in FOG (Fear Obligation Guilt) which keeps us trapped in the KoN until we obliterate the Illusion that they have the Potential to Change, we deceive ourselves by giving the N the benefit of the doubt that s/he is not really that bad, due to the Intermittant Counterfeit Love.

    Authentic Love gives us the Freedom to Disagree w/out being abused with verbal & physical attacks or the infamous Silent Treatment. Everytime the NM attacks don't get caught up in the Behavior, but rather the Message that she is sending you about how she feels & thinks about you. In the KoN we focus on the Behavior rather than the Message, when we refocus our attention on the Message rather than the Behavior we start to break the chains.

    Each attack is Confirmation for your Soul, Mind, and Heart. When the time comes to leave the KoN you will do so w/complete Peace knowing w/out a doubt that the NM is not going to change, you didn't cause her wickedness, you can not fix it, and NM has no desire to change it because it makes her feel Good being Evil.

    Sugar you are a Strong Warrior Women of Worth who is enduring a lot in the KoN, your Freedom is coming, the NM put on the chains, but you hold the key to set yourself Free. It will happen when you are completely ready, not a minute too soon nor too late. The first time I went NC was in my 20's, the only regret I have now is that I returned to the KoN over and over again until the NC became as Permanent as the Momster's Pathology.
    Blessings to you my Friend.

  3. I don't have a mother with NPD, I have one who is very emotionally immature and passive agressive however. I have found that a session with Anna Conlon, in which I cut the 'cord of attachment' to my mother helped. If you're not familliar with the term then it might sound very strange but in essence, every relationship forms a cord of attachment and a spiritual tie, and using Rose Rosetree's methods, you can effectively and permanently cut that cord. Whatever is in the cord affects you 24/7 on a subconscious level emotionally and mentally. When I cut the cord of attachment to my mother, there was a lot of feelings of not being understood, being weird, being too difficult for her to handle. Getting rid of all that has made a difference in how I interact with her now and how independant I feel within myself as well. I don't know how you feel about spiritual healing techniques, but as it's made such a difference for me personally I feel it's worth a mention. is a good place to start.