You Deserve Recovering Psychologically, Emotionally and Spiritually After the Narcissist

It is the life experiences of my readers and clients that led me to speak directly to their suffering and the process of healing and restoration in my new book: Recovering and Healing After the Narcissist: Discovering Your True Self.  I specifically write to those who have experienced multiple cruelties, deprivations, and humiliation and offer a program to those who live in the aftermath of the narcissistic cataclysm—spouses, ex-spouses, mothers, fathers, siblings. Those who live under these horrific conditions  suffer deep pain. They are desperate, confused, suffer from self blame, are exhausted, feel lost and at times  even crazy.

The narcissist took so much of your life—You deserve to get it all back and then some.

For those who have experienced narcissistic abuse in its innumerable cruel forms, know that you deserve to recover in every aspect of your life, to thrive and use your many creative gifts and discover your true self.  Throughout life we are in a process of separating and individuating from our families of origin.  This is your psychological, emotional and spiritual birthright as a precious individual.

Your healing and recovery involve breaking destructive survival patterns.

The survival tactics we develop become ingrained into us.  Like a familiar song that spontaneously reprises in our minds, distinct patterns of thoughts, feelings memories, fantasies and wishes emerge…Most people continue to listen and respond to the old family life song first heard in childhood.”   (From: Recovering and Healing After the Narcissist: Discovering your True Self)

“The destructive life repetitions that we engage in are innumerable and particular to each individual.  They are found in a repeated cycle of returning to narcissistic individuals who injure us emotionally and psychologically. It is surprising, but often the child that was raised in a narcissistic family with narcissistic parents and siblings returns to this environment that created his greatest suffering by marring a narcissist.” (From Recovering and Healing After the Narcissist:Discovering Your True Self)

Your healing begins with a deep understanding that: There is a center within us that is always seeking the truth about ourselves…Cracking the code of psychological repetition begins with waking up…When we are awake we see things as they are, without delusion. There is no veil, wall or barrier that separates us from what is true.”  (From: Recovering and Healing After the Narcissist: Discovering Your True Self).

Full access to your true self occurs with a specific, consistent practice of self care and the full use of your many creative gifts. As you heal in the aftermath of sharing your life with a narcissist, writing is one of the most powerful methods for loosening up, expressing your thoughts and emotions and igniting your imagination. All you have to do is open yourself up to writing..The practice of spontaneous writing is a gift that never wears out, has no restrictions or boundaries, and is always available. (From: Recovering and Healing After the Narcissist: Discovering Your True Self) Writing regularly is a significant part of your personal transformation.

Nurturing deep friendships where trust and comfort are part of your life,are an essential part of your healing process. We only need a couple of individuals with whom we can communicate, let down and be completely ourselves. These relationships are pure gold.

Rediscovering your creative self is an essential part of your life journey toward recovery.  Creativity is occurring ever moment we are alive, whether we are awake, asleep or dreaming or in joy, sorrow or doubt..It is a transpersonal experience that redeems us from our life histories, .We jump into the roaring, ecstatic stream, swept up in the current that created the cosmos…(From: Recovering and Healing After the Narcissist: Discovering Your True Self)

Learning to meditate your way with consistency heals with the gift of inner stillness.  Be patient and kind with yourself in starting a meditation practice. Remember, this is your unique experience that belongs to no one else. Meditation is the key to insight, healing and breaking unproductive and destructive cycles of repetition…With meditation we reach the mind beyond mind, thought beyond thought–the source of knowing. In deep meditation we experience a vibration of peace…Meditation creates a spaciousness of mind. When we are at peace, even for a few moments, we expand and deepen.  (From: Recovering and Healing After the Narcissist: Discovering Your True Self)

Tapping into the healing restorative part of the nervous system, the parasympathetic is a key toward healing and recovering your true self. “All Healing begins by consistently accessing the parasympathetic nervous system. This is a state of letting go as you bathe in physical and psychological security, peace and body and mind grounding. This calm waking state is natural and built into your being. In the parasympathetic you float down a gentle river, letting the waters take you in a direction of their own. You feel receptive to the freedom and ease you’re experiencing. As you consistently visit this state of calm, the healing of psyche, body and mind accumulates and moves forward at a steady pace.” (From: Recovering and Healing After the Narcissist: Discovering Your True Self)

Becoming open to the souls of other individuals is a profound experience of healing and transformation.  Meeting a soul, you attune yourself to that person on a spiritual and psychological level. They feel your empathy In this interchange, the souls meet and healing takes place. (From: Recovering and Healing After the Narcissist: Discovering Your True Self)

You deserve to heal, recover, transform your life, manifest your unique creative gifts, develop psychologically and spiritually to the fullest and to live in the beauty, peace, comfort and strength of the true self.

You can read portions of my new  book and purchase it at amazon.com

Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Narcissistic Parents–Terrorizing Their Kids to Be Perfect!

Narcissistic mothers and fathers are on endless rampages to make their children ultra perfect.  No little child can meet the “standards” of these highly disturbed parents. Sometimes there is only one narcissistic mother or father—-Other children are thrown into the impossible role of having duo raging narcissistic moms and dads.  I have had heard from many of these adult children and the horror stories of their childhoods, at times Hitchockian, are chilling–and this is an understatement.

Everything on the surface appears to be in absolute order. In many of these homes one would not find a spot of dirt, dust, particle of food, mud, smudge, grit, grim–even a grain of cereal, sand, rice or a small thin sample of one human hair. And speaking of human–these children grow up in a tidy, sterile inhumane environment.

On the outside, narcissistic mothers and fathers are often regaled as sterling examples of individuals and parents in their communities and the wider world.  They are feted for their accomplishments, creativity, professional excellence, their moral bona fides. These individuals wear many convincing masks that fool entire worlds of people, including psychotherapists, teachers, physicians, neighbors, friends, professional associates. They are beyond judgment because of the perfection of their impeccably masked false selves.

In a society that is breeding narcissism faster than we can imagine, these individuals are raised up to the highest places in their societal groups. No one would ever know that in private they create a chronic horrific living nightmare for their infants, young children and adult children.

One of the toughest problems with these cruel, treacherous narcissistic parents is that the child who speaks up about the reality of his or her hidden frightening world is severely punished, demeaned, humiliated and threatened. “No one believes me”  —-that is what I am often told by the victims of the narcissistic parents. “They think I am crazy, weak, deluded.” After a while some children come to believe that something is intrinsically wrong with them.  This is so painful—like constantly screaming into a cyclone and feeling yourself being ripped away into oblivion.

Narcissistic parents are not affectionate with their children unless it is in front of a camera for a family portrait or on display at social events or church. There is no real hugging, holding or being soothed. These arms are hard and cool, even cold. The parental eyes show no feeling, depth, warmth or compassion. They are blank, menacing, judging and at times deeply  threatening. Parental abuses take place in the imprisonment of the family home. While the physical arrangement can be very attractive and neat to the extreme, the emotional and psychological environment is hard edged, apprehension charged, waiting for the footfall that will strike fear in a child’s entire nervous system. These children never feel safe—Why would they? They aren’t and can never let down. There is no emotional and psychological space for private reveries, pleasant daydreams, flights of fancy.  Night time is a special horror to these children. Alone in their rooms they are doubly fearful. They know that no matter how desperate or even how ill they are,  they cannot call out to mom or dad because either they will be completely ignored or if the parent comes, a great loud storm will appear rather than a comforting mom or dad. Left alone, the child whimpers and cries for the parent who will never come to them in the time of their greatest need. Their fears increase and some children develop phobias, symptoms of post traumatic stress, anxiety disorders.  On the surface, of course, they must morph into mother and father’s perfect little darlings.

As the years go by, children of narcissistic parents suffer horribly. Some of them learn to conceal and protect their true feelings and to wall off their precious authentic original selves.  Other kids get the message that in order to survive they must play the roles assigned to them: scapegoat, golden child, forgotten child, unwanted child, stupid child, crazy kid.

I have spoken and communicated with many adult children of narcissistic parents who have survived these endless wars on their psyches, bodies, minds and spirits. Listening to these survivors is profound. I am deeply moved beyond words by their grit, strength, courage, creativity, compassion, insight and deep humanity. Many find their own pathways to healing and recovery.  This is a long journey with many detours, switchbacks and roads less taken. Here they are—Deep affection, gratitude and joy to those who are on this path each day, moment by moment.

 

Narcissistic Mothers Divide and Conquer

Narcissistic mothers are one woman armies of human destruction. They
are an elite team of ninja killers of the psyches of their children. One
narcissistic mother does more psychological damage than you can
imagine. I read and hear life stories every day about those who have
survived the narcissistic battles of childhood. One of NM’s cruelest
tactics is turning one child against the other. She will assure her son
that he is the special one and then tell the older daughter that she has
been chosen. After all, she is gorgeous, bright and talented. She pits one child against the other. This highly dysfunctional family is in a state of endless psychological war.

The narcissistic mother ties her psychological twin to herself like an appendage. These children have special privileges, no psychological boundaries, no empathy, no developed conscience. They are sent to the finest schools, showered with praise and adulation, never questioned about their brutal sadistic behavior toward their siblings. Even when “mother”  is a witness to these treacheries, she turns a blind eye. For her, the chosen one is the ultimate narcissistic supply.

The golden child learns from mom to taunt and terrorize the other children.
Between the two of them, it is a sinister game—a sadistic one.
In these families it is every child for himself. The brother or sister who
is savvy and has the opportunity, escapes as early as possible. Some
children find other adults whom they trust and help them to move, get
jobs, training, go to college, etc.

As the years go by, hatred between the siblings grows and hardens. The narcissistic
mother remains Ruler of the dissembling process.

You are entitled to rescue yourself from this psychological gulag.  Study the narcissistic personality in-depth. Get in touch with your true self, that part of you that that is authentic, genuine and creative.  You are entitled to lead your life with grace, inner peace, the full use of your creative gifts.

 

Concealed Narcissists Are Psychologically Dangerous

One of the most difficult individuals to identify is the concealed or hidden narcissist. They are so clever at disguising their true intentions, lack of conscience, emotional threats to you. Often they appear to be humble and self effacing–butter doesn’t melt in their mouths. They give you just the right kind of attention that makes you feel that you are deeply appreciated and respected. You breathe a sigh of relief and believe that you have found someone whom you can trust. They have a way of putting you at ease and off guard. Concealeds are unlike their grandiose, “look at me” cousins. If anything, they appear to be quiet, undemanding and empathic. They have Ph.D.s in pseudo empathy. That’s how fine of an act they have honed down. You find concealeds in every population. Some thrive in religious circles, spiritual communities, in mental health professions, etcsta. However, they range the gamit in formal education socioeconomic status, social status and circles of influence.

The concealed narcissist possesses the same psychic structure as the grandiose, sun kings and queens that demand attention at stage center and are constantly commanding unlimited applause and adulation. That is the difficulty in recognizing them before they get their psychological hooks into you. They are very cunning and hold their personal cards close to the vest. They are masters of your emotional and psychological “tells”. I daresay some of them are phenomenal poker players.

Concealeds are clever at putting just the right flavors and amounts of their attention on to you. Some act like servants, individuals who are there to rescue you, who declare that without you their lives would lack meaning or value. Concealeds outwardly take the high moral ground. This is a ruse to impress you about their “fine” characters.

Once you are under their spell, you begin to feel the cruel darkness beneath their compelling, seemingly innocuous surfaces. They let the primitive projections fly and catch you off guard. You are shocked and rocked by the incoming waves of corrosive cruelties and psychological assaults. Then, when you think you cannot take it any more, the hidden narcisisst apologizes so convincingly that you let him/her back into your life. This back and forth pattern over months and years saps you of your emotional and psychological energy. But, many of you blame yourself. This is all backwards but you don’t realize that you are not at fault at all. You are on the receiving end of severe psychopathology.

To protect yourself from these hidden narcissists, study this personality structure in-depth. At the same time, start putting yourself first. Learn to take very good care of yourself. If you have not learned how to do this, especially if you were raised in a narcissistic family, it is time to start—-Now.

Know that the concealed narcissist is very difficult to identify. Put yourself first. Take care of yourself with the right amount of sleep, proper eating, an exercise program that works for you, guided meditation, high quality acupuncture, making Beauty and Nature in all of its forms a part of your daily life. Trust your intuition and insight always.

Narcissists Will Never Stop Lying to You

You want to believe them when they pull you back into their orbit after their horrible cruelties and betrayals. They know just how to talk to you, what your emotional needs are as well as your vulnerabilities. You are most likely a deeply caring, compassionate and empathetic person.  These are the ones that that they prey on the most. Although narcissists have no genuine insight, they have been practicing “playing people” all of their lives.

We don’t expect another person with whom we have shared are lives to be so deceitful and annihilating. That is because you are not thinking the way that a narcissist does. It is very important that you learn how these individuals function, what their goals are and what makes them tick. Remember–they are not like you so don’t expect them to tell the truth—ever. They lie by omission and commission. They deny the dreadful things they have done to you. They purposefully make empty promises under pressure to keep you by their side as a source of perpetual narcissistic supply–adulation, praise, validation, adoration.

Many narcissists are so charming and magnetic that with the power of their personalities and their attractiveness, they can convince you that they are telling the exact truth even when they are lying through their gorgeous white teeth.

Narcissists don’t develop a conscience. What is right or wrong for them is based on whether they can get away with something that is often immoral and unethical and even illegal. They don’t have a sense of limits. They are always right and perfect. They view others as inferior to them, boring, stupid, foolish and ignorant.

When you pay close attention to your intuition you will know when the narcissist is lying to you to get you back, to intimidate and humiliate you, to blame you, to project his/her volcanic rage on to you.

Study the narcissistic personality in-depth. Honor who you are as an authentic, creative and grounded individual. Learn to take very good care of yourself —physically, emotionally, psychologically and spiritually. Put yourself first.

Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.

Narcissistic Sisters Always Betray You

Since you were very little you have been waiting for your narcissistic sister (often the Golden One) to love you.

Time after time you appealed to her humanity for kindness, respect and consideration. You discovered repeatedly that your narcissistic sister returned your yearning and wishes with cruelty, lying and cold betrayals. You were hurt too many times to count. You cried and cried. No one came to comfort you. This is especially the case if narcissistic mother and daughter were psychologically fused with one another. They were an inseparable team. You were never allowed to get between them to get your essential psychological and emotional needs.

There is something about the human being that keeps us going back to the person who has hurt us to believe that if we make the effort, the next time will be different. You remember trying to make up with your sister. You started to believe that you were at fault, that something was intrinsically the matter with you.

Being innocent you shared your secrets with this sister only to discover that she betrayed your trust and told your deepest thoughts and feelings to your narcissistic mother. You heard them laughing at you, deriding you.

It can take a very long time to recognize that your sister is a narcissist and that she is not going to change–ever. This is a fixed personality disorder that features defense mechanisms that are like impenetrable steel. With the narcissistic sister there is no empathy, warmth, concern for your welfare, kindness or compassion.

Your narcissistic sister pretends that she cares about you but know that when this happens she is treating you “nicely” because she wants something from you, a narcissistic supply that she is after.

Once you have researched and understand that your sister is a narcissistic personality, you realize that you are not and never were to blame for her cruel betrayals and psychological and emotional abuse.

Having this knowledge is powerful and will propel you toward recovery and rediscovery of your true self. You deserve to lead a life that is fulfilling, that provides you with inner peace, continued healing and the full use of your many creative gifts.

Healing from Your Narcissistic Mother Begins Now

It is very difficult, painful and complex for children of narcissistic mothers to heal their psychological and emotional wounds. One of the hardest parts of this process is in the recognition that your mother is a narcissistic personality. When we grow up we learn to survive and cope with the circumstances and roles that we are given. Small children cannot know that their mother, the person whom they are entitled to trust the most, is incapable of this sacred maternal bond.  Some small children know early that mother didn’t love or care deeply about them. They could feel it, see it in their mother’s eyes, hear her shrill voice, watch her walk away from them, punish them in frightening, alarming ways for no reason except their very existence.

The time of knowing that your mother is a narcissist will come. It dawns often in the process of healing from this non-parent. Yet each time we are awakened to this truth, there is a tendency for this painful knowledge to fade, for the child to make excuses for the parent or to think he or she is unworthy, defective even bad.

You have been through a series of hells with your narcissistic mother. You have gone back and forth with the No Contact, Minimal Contact modes. Other family members put pressure on you to see your mother. They don’t understand your perspective or life experience with her. This is the case because narcissistic mothers are consummate actors. They fool everyone but you. Even your brothers and sisters think there is something intrinsically the matter with you since “mom” is such a wonderful person. You are often the odd person out–You hold the truth; everyone around you does not.

To heal you cannot wait for your family members and others to come to the realization that your mother is a narcissist who has treated you coldly, cruelly and dismissively.

Give yourself time and space to heal. This is a long complex process worth the passage–the recovery of your true self, the person you were always meant to be.

Begin the practice of putting yourself first. Make sure that you learn to take very good care of your total being: physical, mental, emotional, psychological, spiritual. There are many pathways to healing. They begin with activating the calming part of your nervous system, the parasympathetic, the restorative that brings your inner peace and belongs to you.

Seek relationships that nurture you. Pay attention to getting the sleep that you need and deserve. Exercise your way. Listen to great music, enjoy the beauty of art in every form, merge with Nature, the Great Healer that restores, calms and revives our life force. Develop a practice of quieting the mind in a regular way that works for you. This can be guided meditation, readings that inspire you, yoga poses that open your heart and heal you and finding creative activities that speak to you personally. Make an effort to find other individuals who are warm and compassionate, who understand you, are loyal and whom you can count on and trust. It is surprising when we find these great people. We see it in their eyes and feel their warm, loving hearts.

Be kind and patient with yourself as you move through your sacred healing.

Narcissistic Mother Chooses Golden Child Sister–Not You

Narcissistic mothers often pick a favorite child–the kid that has it all: good looks, intellectual brightness, a gleaming personality, athletic prowess. These “mothers” know what they want–the child who will provide them with the perfect ever-lasting narcissistic supply. What could be better than to have a reflection of yourself as part of your own DNA. The bragging rights with this kid are endless. From the beginning the narcissistic mother makes it very clear that you are the outcast, the victim, the “less than” who will never make the grade.

You remember as a small child that your sister was the one who always shined in the family. She was called gifted, beautiful, the achiever, even the Star. Some children under these survival circumstances accept the role of not being “chosen.” They must get through their lives each day and as a result accept their roles as second, third, an also ran or not even in the game (or family).

The narcissistic mother brags to everyone that your sister is her favorite. She does it in a variety of ways–by providing special lessons to the Princess, by making sure she attends all the right schools (not you–you are on your own)  through dramatic over the top displays of praise and adulation.  You are the one who is criticized, demeaned and humiliated.

There are no limits placed on this budding narcissistic sister who never forms a conscience and exerts her power over you at every turn. This is so frightening to the child who is the outcast. She feels completely alone with no one to turn to. In some cases there is comfort in a grandmother or aunt who pays attention to the unchosen child but often the scapegoat gets the crumbs or less.

Throughout their lives these outcast children suffer and bear psychological cruelties. Some leave home very early to get away from the narcissistic toxicity. Others find ways to be invisible by staying the homes of friends most of the time. Many find comfort in libraries and through reading and flights of the imagination and Nature. All along there is pain inside for this forgotten sister. Many of them are very strong and courageous and decide that they will not be defeated. They find their way despite all of the obstacles placed in front of them by the narcissistic mother and sister.

Decades later the psychopathological pattern remains. Narcissistic mother and royal sister are thick as thieves. They feed off of one another’s egos.

The sister who received the abusive treatment from the narcissistic duo travels a long road to her awakening of the real self. In some cases quality psychotherapy is very helpful. In others these individuals take a spiritual route where they discover solace and inner peace. Many find friends and partners who demonstrate deep love for them. These are times of healing and growth. The evolving self continues its journey throughout life. If we are not growing we are regressing and so we move forward despite the pain of the past and the injustices that we cannot change. We learn from them, deepen our insights, soften our hearts, maintain our mental and psychological stamina and remain in touch with our souls.

Narcissists Love to Play Psychological Gotcha!

Narcissists are always plotting and planning your psychological demise if you are in their way.  They come on with their magnificent charm, endless promises, seductive ways and excessive confidence. They know precisely when and how to strike to make you feel ashamed, unworthy, a failure, ugly, a castoff. They have a cruel gift of  knowing exactly when to pop up in your presence when you are feeling particularly vulnerable and at your wits end.

Narcissistic mothers target their scapegoated children with multiple humiliations and caustic criticisms; narcissistic siblings make the unexpected grand entrance in all of their glory to put you down; narcissistic spouses wait for the right moment to emotionally pummel and humiliate you.

Narcissists are feverishly competitive. They must always win over you. They keep score. They know your moods, your weaknesses, how easily you can be deceived with their lies. Since they don’t have a developed conscience they are not burdened by wounding you psychologically, emotionally and financially.  You are not on the same moral footing as the narcissist. He or she doesn’t have a moral compass. Their True North is what they want and must have. Playing their game of Psychological Gotcha they put you back in their control  in the fight or flight sympathetic nervous system.

Be prepared for the Gotcha game of the narcissist by practicing daily healing in the ways that work best for you. Learn how to move toward the parasympathetic calming restorative nervous system through getting the sleep that you need, eating foods that nourish and sustain you, exercising regularly in the way that works best for you, stretching and doing gentle yoga poses with emphasis on breathing through the nose (Nostril breathing activates the parasympathetic nervous system). Creative activities—writing, sketching, painting, music, dance–all of these and more activate the restorative healing parts of your body and mind. Guided meditation is another way of calming the body and mind. Short periods of meditation –3 to 5 minutes a day done consistently moves you toward healing. This accumulates over time.  You will find that you are calmer, stronger, have more physical and psychological stamina.

As you heal and get stronger, you will find others whom you can trust, individuals who are not narcissists and who are empathic. We don’t need a lot of friends, just a few. Friendship is a powerful part of healing and sustaining us throughout our lives.

End the cruel Narcissistic Psychological Gotcha game by using these practices and your deep intuition which always tells you the truth. Pay  close attention to these messages. We tend to wave them off. Don’t share your intuitions with most people. They won’t believe you. It is a waste of your time and effort. You will find very few individuals who trust this kind of knowledge. The more you use your intuition the more powerful it becomes.

Trust the healing process within you. Celebrate your individuality and authenticity. Embrace your creativity. Feel your loving heart.

 

Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers Take Care of Your Child Inside

As a daughter of a narcissistic mother you were treated without compassion. Cruelty from mother came in many forms: neglect, sharp criticisms, insidious manipulations, screaming fits and hysteria, constant blame, false accusations and many forms of abuse and exploitation. Narcissistic mothers are exceedingly cold emotionally. They are incapable of authentic psychological attachment. Even those daughters who are treated as the golden child and appear to be adored by mother, are not loved for themselves but are forced to take the role of mother’s perfect mirror and her ultimate narcissistic supply.

Some daughters don’t make the grade as far as mother is concerned and they are discarded and left on their own. This is very distressing to a young child to feel abandoned and completely alone with no one to turn to. In many cases the father plays the role of enabler and is subservient emotionally his narcissistic wife and is very distanced from the family. As a result the daughter has no parent to turn to for emotional comfort, acceptance, support or protection.

As the grown daughter of a narcissistic mother, take courage in who you are as an individual. Be kind to the small child inside of you, show compassion not blame. Blame was projected on to you but it is not your true identity. Take time to research the true nature of the narcissistic personality, the narcissistic mother in particular. This begins the process of healing.

Learn to honor yourself by practicing self care. Get the sleep that you need and deserve, use your creativity to the fullest, find a few individuals whom you trust and who truly listen, rediscover beauty in your life. Some daughters report that guided meditation that calms the mind and nervous system is very helpful in learning how to become more peaceful inside. Gentle hatha yoga with emphasis on breathing slowly through the nostrils is a calming practice that clears the mind and works on every system of the body for strength and flexibility.

We celebrate your healing process. It is your first priority.