One would think that if you share the same DNA with your brother or sister the two of you would hold many similar human values: capacity and demonstration of empathy and kindness, having a well developed conscience, being respectful to other human beings and thinking of the needs of others rather than total self absorption.
This is not the case with narcissistic siblings whether they are golden children or not. If you look back you can tell that this brother or sister was dominating and intimidating you from the beginning. Remember the pinching of your little hands and arms, stomping on your feet, the pulling of your hair, the ugly frightening words that scared you into doing everything their way. Many parents are oblivious to these cruelties. Some mothers and fathers are narcissists. They adore the golden child torturer and don’t give a damn what this cruel cunning beast does to you. Their focus is on the perfect chosen one that acts as a narcissistic supply and impeccable mirror to keep their egos fully inflated.
The following is a true example of what I witnessed over time in a household where the golden child ruled like the Red Queen in Alice in Wonderland. Those of you who have been tyrannized by a sibling of this kind understand all too well. From early childhood this daughter was allowed by her parents to demand, scream, bribe, cajole and threaten her younger brother and sister. If they didn’t cave in to her wishes all hell broke loose. The parents were terrified of “upsetting” their little darling and capitulated to her wishes. This relinquishing of their roles was pivotal in creating a narcissistic personality disorder.With a sense of no limits, “You can do nothing wrong attitude”, “we are afraid to impose respectful behavior on you”—she grew in outrageous demands and reprehensible behavior. When the parents were out of sight, she was free to shove, push, squeeze and hit them. The secret threat to the terrified child was: “If you say one word to mom or dad—I will hit you even harder. They love and believe me not you. Shut your mouth, don’t say a word–If you disobey me, you will be very sorry.”
For you to heal from this abuse requires the recognition that you were victimized by a very disturbed human being. You are not weak. Your sibling is a severe narcissistic personality disorder and in some cases, a socialized sociopath. If you haven’t already, go no contact with this narcissistic scourge. Taking this step, you are renewing your own life, valuing yourself as a unique individual and gaining a sense of respite and inner peace that you deserve. Do this for yourself. Do not be concerned what other family members think or say. This is your business not theirs. If mother and father are perplexed about your decision that is their issue. They never protected you.
You can heal from the narcissistic and/or sociopathic sister or brother who caused you horrendous pain and fear. For some, working with a highly qualified and empathic therapist is part of the process. Be sure you research and interview psychotherapists. It is well worth it. Many therapists are fine and qualified but there are others who are focusing on the business side of therapy and some psychotherapists are narcissistic personalities.
Learning how to calm your body and mind through guided meditation, gentle hatha yoga and other healing modalities gets you in touch with that interior part of yourself that learns to experience inner peace and security.
Healing and individuating out of your family of origin is a lifelong process. You will begin to value yourself as a unique individual who has many creative gifts. You will find others with whom you can truly communicate and who have deep empathy. Your sense of humor will return. You will seek beauty in life whether it is in art or the natural world. Appreciating beauty on a deep level is essential to healing and a wonderful opportunity that we have to be completely human.