Narcissists Feel Great–They make Others Feel Miserable

Getting too close to a narcissist, particularly if you marry one or are one of his/her children, can cause you to become ill—psychologically, emotionally or physically. It could take some time but eventually your life will be turned upside down and your stress levels will increase and your life will become more difficult. There are exceptions—those who buy in to the narcissist’s delusions and become true believers. Many of these individuals are narcissistic themselves or hangers on who are too impressed with the narcissist’s power to manipulate and overwhelm people to get what they want. They believe in trickle-down–that some of that over-confidence and extreme self entitlement will rub off on them. Those who live with the narcissist who are on the receiving end of the harshest of treatments. They survive behind the gates of a harsh ruler. They may be leading a decent lifestyle on the surface but there is no comfort, empathy, kindness or understanding from this dictator. Some narcissists buy off their marital partners so that their image is protected. I know of several narcissists who have given their wives “shut up” money after they have been exposed of infidelities. These women go along with this program because they are terrified that if they leave or are shut out they will be living in more reduced circumstances. They have gone down the road with the narcissist too long to pull away now. These spouses pay a very high price for their decision. They are not free to lead their own lives. Their thinking is constrained –they are constantly at the call of the outrageous demands of the narcissistic spouse—day and night. When they comply, it is not good enough. Even if they are very ill, this is no excuse for the narcissist. He demeans them, calls them weak and worthless. Some spouses force themselves, regardless of their emotional, psychological or physical state, to be ever-ready for the phone call, the scream, the threat that will come at any minute. They must be ready at all times to serve this tyrannical person. These ugly scenarios occur all of the time–they just aren’t public. Some women are physically hit by their narcissistic spouses time after time. The feeling of threat throughout the household is palpable at all times. This is a toxic atmosphere for raising children. Their father is a cruel patriarch who is only interested in how perfectly they produce perfect school grades, how well they perform athletically, if they have music talents or dramatic talents that can be exploited as narcissistic supplies to the father. How much is misery worth? Are you willing to exchange your peace of mind and well being and that of your children, for the lifestyle. When will the time come when you have had enough. Will it take getting physically ill to make the decision? Will it involve your child’s stress level becoming so high that he/she can no longer function at school? Are you willing to exchange your identity, inner self, peace of mind, the opportunity to express and be your true self and use all of your creative gifts for the outer trappings of the narcissistic lifestyle. What we know for sure is that these individuals do not change——ever! This is a life sentence for you and you never know when you will be discarded and/or replaced with someone else who is younger, prettier, more compliant, a better puppet. Take a long view of your life. You have much to contribute. You deserve to express your ideas, feelings and to use all of your creative gifts in freedom. Think about the lives of your children. They know that you love them and will protect them. For you, this can be the time of reckoning–changing your life, separating yourself from the narcissist to reclaim you own identity.

34 thoughts on “Narcissists Feel Great–They make Others Feel Miserable”

  1. I think my life would have been happier if our mother had left our narcissistic father instead of being his little doormat. I was thinking yesterday living with him was a bit like society’s tolerance for a certain violent religious minority in the news lately–we got used to putting him on a different pedestal than everyone else, that we had to tip toe around, that his irrational over-reactive rages just meant we all had to bend further over backwards to coddle his special needs because he was who he was–a violently angry, often drunk explosive bully and egotist.

    1. My Dad was a narcissistic bully and made our lives a living Hell. My heart would break when my Mom would cry because of his nastiness. Four kids in our family – my sister was disowned by him because she disagreed with an issue he had, my brother disowned all of us rather than take any more of my Dad’s abuse.. and I was totally destroyed by humiliation, degradation, sarcasm that NOBODY has been able to equal my entire life.. and the nasty comments that cut to your bone. He was a TYRANT and made me feel like a worthless piece of nothing… setting the stage for endless failed relationships as I grew up .. and absolutely NO self esteem. I could go on and on and on.. but I despised that man for what he did to my family.. No friends. No visitors. No family. Just us.. nobody else could stand him. I asked my Mom YEARS later.. why didn’t she leave?? She said it was too late.. and she felt sorry for him.. she said she could see it in his eyes. Yes, well.. ok… Her choice I guess but was HER life happy?? He put her down.. treated her like a doormat, personal slave, and when she attempted to make herself happy taking art classes?? He just laughed at her. He tormented me til his last dying day and I’m glad he’s gone. My Mother died at 69 – and I’m convinced it was from the stress of putting up with HIM.. and losing her oldest son because of this nasty man. With a lot of help from a dear friend of mine.. 2 yrs of intense therapy helped me realize at long last that I was a good person DESPITE what my Father taught me. Yes, tremendous ego. Explosive bully that would explode at no provocation… and had to cater to HIS every whim.. God help us if we touched his newspaper. He was fed steak while the rest of us got hamburger.

      Couldn’t have said it better.. Over reactive rages. Yep. Thank God I’m free.

  2. I do realize that just about all of these web sites use the “female” as the target or subject, of the abuse. I also understand that the author means to direct it to anyone, whether male or female, who is in these situations. My question is from the male (father) perspective. How can a man, who married a person with this disorder, who has a young child, remove himself from the situation? The Courts, almost 100% of the time, award the children to the mother. There seems to be no way to prove this “abuse” or diagnosis to the Court. The child is now awarded to the mother and the father must not only have to deal with this person for the rest of his life BUT also wonder if the child is being subjected to the same abuse as he was? The manipulation is supported by the Courts. If the father, retailiates in anyway, he will be arrested. Even if he does not retaliate and keeps quiet, he will continue to be abused by the mother. What can be done to get the Courts to support the Fathers Rights?

    1. Hi colleen,

      I struggled with the same problem! I’m a male to; nobody will believe your stories about narcissistic abuse. Last summer I was filming during the birthday party of my son, than my wife exploded for some reason, the narcissistic rage…………. But I was still filming, got it on camera, and during the day I was able to capture 4 other narcissistic explosions, with mental and physical abuse of my children, and even one attack from my wife directly at me. She ordered me to delete the “evidence”, when I refused she almost killed me…. But at that moment I understood the power of the film. I than decided that I had to film more of the abuse that was going on. It was worth to put my own live at risk, to be able to save the life of my children……… Finally after 6 month I had captured almost 2 hours of narcissistic rage on film. When I presented all the evidence to a court, about 4 weeks ago, the judge ruled that my wife had to leave the house immediately. So what you need to do is to try to capture it on film, but be prepared, she will turn all here anger directly to you, so make sure you can save the film somewhere, where she cannot destroy it. Make sure that you won’t be killed in the process; you have to make your own risk analysis.
      Good luck, be save

      1. Thank you “No Name” for your response. I totally understand that the more information/proof, that you can get is the best line of fighting the Court System. The problem lies when you risk your own “life” in order to obtain this proof. The father, in my case, has been thrown into jail when she attacked him because the police officers “always arrest” the male who is involved. I know this from personal experience and I have many family members in law enforcement who have told me that is “policy”. As a result of the arrest, not only legal fees are incurred but an impact on employment, present and future, as well as relationships, again present and future are impacted. Essentially trying to protect your child becomes a total life altering existance. The child states constantly that “I want to live with Daddy” but no one listens. The Court Appointed Child Attorney does not even speak to the Father. Despite multiple phone calls and messages, emails etc, she does not respond. How can she possibly be the person who determines what the best interest of the child is if she only speaks the NP mother? It seem it is a no win situation. Maybe when the child is old enough to present HIS case to the Courts then he will be awarded (hate that word) to the father. We pray that this child has the stamina to continue to withstand life with a NP mother. Until then, we as a family, are subjected to this monster on a daily basis.

      2. Just wanted to comment on narcissistic rage attacks. Not only was my Dad a narcissist.. I married one. Just a few months ago — my husband went out of town on business for several weeks. When he got back – he was distant. He exploded in a rage one night when were were 600 miles away from home.. Threatened to smash in my face, abandon me at a bus station with no money – and was just shockingly abusive.. I had NEVER received threats in the 9 yrs I knew him.. WHY?
        He had found a girlfriend. He was stressed out – feeling guilty about what he’d done to me.. and projecting intense anger on to me since he didn’t know what to do with his feelings. If a narcissist suddenly starts acting weirdly abusive/nasty… there is a reason. Might be another woman. I couldn’t believe it and was never so scared in my life.

        1. Hi,
          My dad was one and I married one, divorced him and married another one. No doubt my pick-o-meter is way off when it comes to mates. The best thing for me to do is figure out how to stay away from them. It’s like they find me…I have a sign on my back. No more.

          1. Anne,I totally relate with you and after 2 years still trying to get out of marriage to narcissist and his rage had shaken me to core
            I am still co habitating to get funds to get own place, I am taking counseling and its helped me find myself.
            I didn’t see my parents together since their divorce when I was a kid but now I recollect their fights and maybe my dad was one too.
            Even I had this sense thst best stAy clear for now than get wrong man.
            It’s important to heal and build our self respect and love first and foremost.
            It will help to know if anyone healed and found trust in loving caring friendships. Not saying only romantic relationship. The trust gets shaken for lot more.

    2. OMG I have really never considered how this affects a man who is married to this person. My mother was my narcissist. I saw first hand how she manipulated everyone and everything. And your right no one will believe you when you describe their actions. This has to be a nightmare especially if you have children that she may be abusing. I would document everything you can altho they are so great at being covert. Putting on the angel face over the devil horns. Stay as close to the children as possible, and I’m sure she will not make that easy. Just be there for them and never ever let her come between you. This will be her main goal in life to separate you from your children in every way.Maybe when they get older and can understand talk with them about it . I would hate to know that I would have to be in contact with my mother now. Maybe he can get shared custody but either way he will have to be in contact with this living hell for the rest of his life and you can bet she will do it to their child. Be the light they can always come too. I wish my dad could have seen my mother for what she was instead he just buckled under and let her have her way. I guess that was easiest for him but Hell for me.

  3. The theory is so easy and the message sent from the head says one thing, but the heart says another. I had a narcissistic mother (but am now only just realising it)but I recall thinking I wouldn’t blame dad for having an affair or leaving, but he never did. He was “old school” and loyal and I think with hindsight, probably too warn down and he did love her. I now find myself in a narcissistic relationship and the pain is horrendous. I find the strength, break free, only to feel lost and lonely and caught again. My only salvation is I don’t have children. It is a truly horrendous place to be. I wish everyone strength and love to survive.

    1. After 25+ years married to a narcissistic wife and having five children I can feel for your father. I suspected that she had several affairs and I was always anxious to go with her to a party because she flirted so flagrantly with other men. But I was clueless that she had a serious problem until she professed her love for another narcissist after they had known each other for a couple of weeks. Even after that I remained faithful because I am focused on the kids. They don’t need to have both of their parents messing around.

  4. Dear Dr. Martinez-Lewi,

    I am so glad I found your blog.

    My father was a very controlling man. His father was physically abusive, his mother did nothing to stop it, protecting his brother instead, her favorite. My father hated women, and married a woman who shares that hate. My dad was verbally and emotionally abusive to my mum, selfish with his love, time, money and he never hugged. His hair-trigger temper and moods were frightening and we walked on egg-shelves. He was unfaithful and used prostitutes. My mother saw this as her problem, not his. An only child, I was an accident, she was and still is, cruel, mean, critical, obsessed with what people think of her and her image. She was so needy that she accepted the crumbs he gave her. I was saved from their madness because I was cared for the first 10 years of my life by my tyrannical maternal grand-mother who had mellowed somehow and only cared about her sons and grand-sons. When I went to live with my parents, once a happy bright bubbly child I became quiet, withdrawn, fat, depressed and stupid. My father used the silent treatment to keep my mother in check and eventually used me to make my mother mad when she was too clingy. He was sexually inappropriate towards me, making my mother mad with jealousy. This resulted in retribution from her, more critics, more invasion of privacy, more attacks. My teenage years were a nightmare as my mother went hyper critical, my sexuality was controlled, I was expected to remain a virgin till marriage. I wasn’t allowed any friends inside the home except family, it was more like a cult, a cult of my dad.
    I left for university, had a breakdown, left my country, started over, tried to kill myself, got therapy for food addiction and learned to stand up to my dad and avoid my mother. I could not understand why I could not make her happy, no matter how hard I tried. Looking back now, as we repeat stuff we don’t understand, I had girlfriends who were like my mother and partners who were like my dad until I figured out that the problem was not with me. It took me years. Emotional vampires show up on my radar early these days.

    My father died 2 years ago and my mother uses me as a receptacle for all the feelings she is trying to avoid. At the funeral, she clang to his best friend, leaving me all alone. My father’s mistress was at the back, showing more class. When there was a problem at the ceremony, people who had not seem me in two decades, looking for a tall insecure fat blob, did not recognize the tall, thin, fit and well put together woman in a black pants suit and assumed I worked for the crematorium. Since then, my mother is a widow and her sorrow demands to be heard. I feel liberated from my father’s controlling ways. My mother misses him terribly.
    Ironie du sort, she has become my dad. At first we assumed it was the grief, but the absence of my father’s control, my mother has revealed herself to be the monster that she is. She demands my complete submission, in vain as I stand up for myself.
    I come back monthly to check on her and fix things on the property . She has a bunch of special friends who “ take such good care of her” basically just call to see if she is alive because they have wised up to her ways. She is happy alone with the memories of my dad and the home they built.
    She treats me like a servant, and shower her niece and nephews with gifts and treats. She makes sure she has their favorite foods when they come to visit but does not any shopping when I come to visit. She only shop for herself and It’s ”look in the freezer” for me. She does not want me there, as I “destabilize” her by questionning her. ????

    She lives in the country and last year she forgot to get enough heating for winter so we spend few days Christmas in zero temperature. I had hunt for wood and to buy an electric heater when the shops opened. This Christmas, she forgot to buy food despite insisting on cooking. The fact that I just had my wisdom out and could not chew also escaped her attention, so she made me her loathed and disgusting tuna souffle from a tin while she had fillet-steak. Same thing for New-Year, we had left-overs. I fixed more things around the property to get out of the house. At the dinner table, she looks away at the window, she told me she cannot look at me because I look so much of my dad and remind her of what she has lost. I got teary eyed and she assumed I felt sorry for her, when in fact I was crying at the cruelty of a non-mother. I came back home, my back went and duly got the worse flu. I have adjusted emotionally to have a monster for a mother and expect nothing of her, I actually protect myself the best I can, because she is poison. I think reality hit me real hard finally, totally drained, I got sick once I was safe back at home.

    Thanks for the posts, they really keep me sane.

    1. I can relate with you regarding mothering my mother and Her getting clingy. I had to finally accept my parents truth for their flaws and let go of guilt. I distanced myself from my mum last year for few months by saying I need to process feelings and she can think too how I hurting. My sILence spoke louder thsn my words. I do formal mails than talk or meet in person. Accepted that emotinal achor we seek in parents sometimes comes in counselor or friends.
      Anger and resentment makes us sick and you deserve to be happy. Forgive yourself for the pain you let youself go through.
      You did the best you could. Now do only what you can without guilt. Find loving affirmations to fill you with healing. Looking outwards will only make pain worse.
      Take support where IT shows up. Know you r supported and not ever alone in your pain,
      Here’s to healing.

  5. Dear Dr. Martinez Lewi. I was married to a narcissist for 12 years and she dumped a perfectly fine husband for a better narcissistic supply; her newborn twin grandaughters that lived in another town. Her lack of remorse was so frightening, that after 12 draining years of marriage, I realized clearly that I married a person with no conscience and this was the most frightening experience I ever had. At first I thought she was a Sociopath, and after 7 months of exhaustive research, I now know beyond the shadow of doubt; I married a a malignant narc. We’ve been divorced now for 9 months and understanding fully what NPD has been a nightmare that still haunts me. It is like something out of the old classic the Twilight Zone, or forced by fate to star in my own real to life horror film. It’s as if my ex is from another world! Thank you so very much for your newsletters Dr. Martinez-Lewi; your news letter are a healing salve! Sincerely, Greg Bernstein

    twilight zone

    1. I relate with you on different level
      Both my ex husband and his mother are narcissistic and they r hostile towards each other too. They have no affection for no one but they pretend well with words
      That’s where others get miles but by their own admission they are both selfish and self centered. They do not see themselves relationship people and yet they married and had kids to keep social Pretense as image is key to them.

      So knowing that neither have any remorse for what agony they put me through, it was hard to get closure without explanation or justice or apology.
      Counselor said that expecting life from stone is self torture
      We just have to Acccept that this is an illness and we didn’t know sonner but don’t mean we question our worth for healing and recovery. We must keep on track. Take care.

  6. Great blog.

    My dad was extremely controlling, a cruel and mean despot, and we lived in a cult, the cult of “I am the king”. My mother was his disciple and I eventually had to leave not to die physically and emotionally.

    Since his passing, my mother, who all her life behaved like a Stepford wife, describes herself as a widow of a man we cannot remember (a Saint).
    She has now claimed back his narcissism, she was co-dependent before and expect me to behave like a cult member. She is having a hard time with my disobedience that she label as – destabilising – without a sense of irony.

    I can’t tell you how much better my life has been since I have stopped to expect – emotionally – ( I lied to myself intellectually for years) that my mother will change and stop being a Non-mother.
    Being with her is draining and I limit my time.

  7. Hope l would receive a response from you in my last letter.

    Your narrative is worrying as you give no advice when a stealth narcissist bitch is in supposed control if two beautiful boy children who were protected by their father from this thing for 7 and 11 years before she lied to the Police, Social Services and perverted the Course of Justice on two occasions.

    With respect your rant is damaging and you should provide exact advise how to fight Court Orders when they have been perverted by sexist feminists who are narcissists themselves. ONLY PARITY IN PARENTING WILL SOLVE THIS PROFILE GLOBALLY. PLEASE DO SOMETHEN TO PROSPECTIVE OUR CHILDREN.

  8. I am a bit confused about “Narcissists Feel Great” – I have come to think that they are tortured people and will never actually be happy. They are in search of something to fill their deficits. How can someone feel great by being angry and abusive? That is sadistic. My narc got angry when he saw others (especially his family) enjoying something or getting excited about something….he’d tear it down, belittle it, or dismiss it. This was damaging to the kids and of course unpleasant for me, the spouse.

    1. Susie,

      Narcissists are not emotionally healthy the way that normal people are. They are so wrapped up in themselves, thinking they are perfect, so any conflict they feel can’t be about them, but about others. They think that material and exterior appearances (the best clothes; houses; cars; trips; jewelry; toys; money; good looking partner) will make them happy, and these things do for awhile. Trouble comes when these things grow old or someone else comes along with something better! Narcs NEVER work on their character flaws, erroneously believing that they are “perfect.” BLAME is a constant weapon that they wield on others as is shame and envy. They WILL never give a compliment, unless it is about themselves or theirs (i.e. children/grandchildren/significant other that reflects THEM. “ME, MYSELF, and I” seem to dominate their speech; priorities; values; and spending habits. YOU can never change a NARC, so don’t try. Most often, the spouse will become FUSED with their NARC after years of CONDITIONING (always being told by them how you are to think and why they are ALWAYS right). Nothing less, you will pay dearily by their frequent verbal rages and attacks! I have seen a grown man (a professional man in charge of a successful law firm) acquiesce to his NARC wife’s ridiculous demands and poor treatment of the people most dear to him! One of these days, we (his family) think that he will reach his breaking point and hopefully break free of the wretched beast who DICTATES and controls his every move!!!!

    2. I can also relate to this. My EX and I were not together that long 4 years and married 2.. We met later in life and I had my own world and he had his. I thought we would be able to join worlds and create a new life. That did not happen. I would be independent and go off to do my thing, and he resented my happiness or any accomplishment. Meanwhile he would constantly say ” Aren’t I the best? tell me I am the best” If I went away for the weekend to visit friends or family, and come home happy, it became sad, he was deflated and unhappy and then I felt guilty. I left on week ends so he could be with his family alone. It came to a point where my friends and family couldn’t be around him and his couldn’t be around me, I couldn’t stand to be around them, and they were enmeshed doing things together constantly travel week ends everything.
      The unbelievable thing is that HE himself did not enjoy time with his family and he had no friends. I enjoyed myself so much that I didnt call or text him…this angered him….
      You are right they are not happy people and they like very much the unhappiness or misfortune of others…
      I think the article is correct though…In my experience, my ex and his mother relished in someone else’s misery or misfortune they liked it and saw it as a personal victory . It made them happy…other peoples happiness made them jealous..

      1. Yes, Linda (the author) is an expert on Narcissistic personality disorders! I too believe that Narcs like making others sad and miserable, especially if they see you being loved and happy with yourself and others. They also will compete for other people’s affection that they are currently giving you! They can’t stand to see someone else get any more love/success/admiration/compliments/achievements than what they currently possess! They will NEVER acknowledge success in others, instead, they will resort to be HATERS!!!! They will say something negative about you to distract others from your successes, whether it is true or not!!! They are also “equal opportunity offenders!” Listen carefully, and you will be able to spot the HATE and venom rolling off their tongue!

    3. I too am confused about” Narcissist Feel Great” My mother truly is happy when she is hurting me. She has this smile/smirk just for me when she puts the knife in my back and she really loves to twist it or she did, I don’t give her a chance anymore , haven’t spoken in 9 years. Wonderful!

  9. The title of this post is not entirely true: apart from the grandiose narcissist, there is also the shy or maladaptive covert narcissist. The latter may suffer anxiety or depression, and are thus more likely to seek help. It is important to raise awareness about this type of narcissist because they may not be as obvious but they are also very destructive.
    http://www.news.com.au/lifestyle/health/signs-youre-dealing-with-a-narcissist/story-fniym874-1226819211996
    http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/beautiful-minds/2013/08/26/23-signs-youre-secretly-a-narcissist-masquerading-as-a-sensitive-introvert/

  10. When I was a child and totally miserable most of the time because of NPD mother….it was so obvious to me that she didn’t like me, apart from her frequently telling me so….I actually asked her if I was adopted….my childlike reasoning being that she couldn’t be my REAL mother because my real mother would love me….she was astonished and I was disappointed…I used to dream about living with my uncle….the bitter irony of this is that when I fell down the rocky hill of substance abuse, being a total emotional wreck, I lost a child to adoption and I loved him so much….and that came back to haunt me….I harbour so much anger and resentment because I could have been ok….I could have been well balanced and educated. but my emotional needs were beyond neglected, they were abused cruelly and all I ever wanted was for her to love me and be pleased with me and to make her proud. I left school looking for love…I couldn’t study or keep a job because I was totally dead on the inside. I could never have had a good relationship because I had NO IDEA how to communicate or ‘be’ with men…..I was desperate for emotional nourishment and I didn’t have the first clue about anything, especially that…I was a non-entity dead from the feet up…..I was in my 30’s before I felt real love…

  11. It is only in the last year or so that it has slowly dawned on me that my mother is narcissistic. It was not a happy realization but I knew it to be true immediately; having a name for her behaviour is helpful. The only reason I’ve seen the light is because I have spent the last 30 odd years putting as much distance between us as possible and learning, growing and healing myself from my destructive life as a result of her pernicious cruelty. I am now in a very good place with a loving husband, no longer on a destructive roller coaster, great relationship with my children and ok with myself which I thought would never happen in fact I believed my destiny was suicide so damaged was I.
    My husband is amazing…he indulges my inner child, loves me and has never judged me. Also he has witnessed her behaviour and has struggled to keep his mouth shut for my sake..it would only lead to disaster anyway and she would make me the pawn in the middle which may have worked before, but I was prepared to choose my husband over her and I think she picked up on that. I believe she’s tried to quietly drive a wedge between us, slagging him off etc…but it hasn’t worked and after 13 years of marriage, it never will. I think she’s jealous of our relationship and I also think she doesn’t actually understand it.. How can that child possibly keep a man and a decent one at that?. She did try controlling him in some ways and by default us, but soon realised that was futile; partly what made her dislike him.
    She has a terminal disease and is 80. I am an only child and as she lives alone and has done for 40+ years, I am all she has. So I had to give up work to become her ‘carer’. She lives 3 hours away and this has involved a LOT of commuting. When I first started going down she was feeling scared and vulnerable and was uncharacteristically nice to me. We actually got quite close and I really thought Wow, we’ve done it! finally! She was treating me like an individual with a valid opinion and everything. I felt something I’d never felt before in her company….relaxed, confident, wasn’t stuttering or stammering (I don’t have a speech impediment, but I get so nervous with her I trip over my words; (she must be so proud of her power to do that) However, since then, she has been more stable and imminent death is not on the cards and i think she suddenly realised I’d risen above my lowly position and now we’re back to the old behaviour. When I arrive she begins by putting me in my place with some well chosen put downs to establish her dominance and from there on she is back in control. Oh how my heart sank when I realised not much had changed after all and the old feelings of impotent rage and pain came rushing back and now I feel betrayed as well. Going to care for her usually a week there and a weekend at home, became unbearable. I was desperate to escape her laser eyes and disapproval and her caustic tongue and the endless nagging/criticisms. My self-esteem started to evaporate and it is only because I have my husband to cry and rant at about it that I am still ok.
    Despite everything I find myself feeling at times desperately sad and sorry for my mother. I mean I can totally understand why she became like this, she had a bad childhood, with all the elements known to create narcissism. I’ve read about it. She has always had my sympathy and support, but that has been part of her neediness and my willingness to gain her approval. The pattern has emerged thus: push me away, reject me, make me miserable and weak for 24/48 hours and then expect me to love her, cuddle her, rub her feet. At this point I am wholly disinclined to go anywhere near her, so then i get the reproachful “what’s wrong with you’s?” and the guilt trips. I really began to feel I was losing my mind the last time. I came home and haven’t been down since, I got the silent treatment, but of course I relented and sent her a nice text, more silent treatment to the point where i was really angry, then a text designed to make me go rushing down….but do you know what? i ain’t doing it. I am too angry. Then of course there’s the subject of her will……she’s made it but is talking about changing things a bit. I may tell her to do that….I don’t know give it to the pdsa or something (she hates animals and has no concept what so ever of the bond/love between pets and humans) and of course yours truly has pets…
    I have so many questions. I need advice but don’t know where to go. I need to work out a new coping strategy.

    1. You are a wonderful person who deserves better, I guess going no contact is out of the question but maybe she will not live too much longer. She will hurt you until she dies.

  12. I feel I should add that in between the negatives she is ‘nice’ not a word most people would associate with her, in fact I believe she would consider it a non-word! But she has been generous. I don’t want to be unfair to her is all….but on the other hand there have always been conditions, unspoken but palpable at times or blatantly demanded at others. She will help out, but then she gets angry. It’s so damned confusing. I just don’t want to mis-represent her. It would be unfair.

  13. Scatpep, The best advice that I can give you is this: “People cannot give you what they themselves, lack!” In other words, if your Mother has never been able to bond with pets and has few REAL friends, then you cannot expect her to give you those things either.

    The real eye opener for me in understanding my narcissist was to look at her closest friends. She has none! Why? She isn’t willing to sacrfrice or invest in others! Even the one person she calls her “friend” is just a lady-in-waiting. She keeps her around to help with entertaining and because she is the wife of her husband’s best friend. Yet, she talks terribly about her “friend”, even to the point of “disdain.”

    Once I realized that Narcs can’t reciprocate, I am very cautious in how much of my time/talents/gifts/consideration that I give to them. There is a Bible verse that says “Don’t give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces.”

    Just because someone is your blood relative, doesn’t mean that they don’t have the capacity to hurt you. In fact, the people that are the closest to us have the capacity to hurt us the most, BECAUSE we care deeply about their feelings towards us!!! This is why spouses sometimes cannot BELIEVE or understand why their partner is treating them so horribly, since MOST people PROTECT, ADVOCATE, and DEFEND those whom are the closest to them! ACCEPTING the TRUTH about a Narc is hard, especially when they are someone that you NEED or EXPECT your needs to be met by!!!! To help you along, always ask yourself this: “What would a reasonable person expect?” If your expectations are reasonable, then you are not wrong for wanting these things! You are WRONG however in thinking that the NARC will someday “get it” (they won’t) or that you did something to bring on their hostility towards you (you didn’t). The best thing that you can do is to take them in small doses and DEPEND on those consistent, loving people in your life to meet your deepest needs.

    Personally, I look to God, since no human being can match his never-ending love; acceptance; approval; and caring for me! The best that another human being can do is supplement God’s love for me in tangible ways [the 5 love languages] of spoken words; warm embraces/kisses; gifts; acts of service; & quality time spent together !!!! Once I came to this realization, I became “FREER” in whom I put my hope/trust/faith in!!!!

    Lastly, I believe that God purposely picks people in our lives who are difficult for us to be an example to. That way, on judgement day, no one can say that they weren’t shown how to love purely and that good examples were not withheld from them!!!!!

      1. You are welcome Scatpep! Never let another person “define” your worth. We love completely when we ATTACH Great worth to every human being we encounter! Their worth only diminishes (in my mind) when they treat me and others poorly; selfishly; or with total disregard.

  14. What a revelation now I am 60 years old! Thankyou for this blog.
    I always knew something wasn’t right with my mother and she is now a bitter and sometimes nasty old woman. I have realised she is a narcissist.
    Growing up, everything revolved around her, Dad gave in to keep her happy and we had no sympathy, love or guidance from her whatsoever. I cannot remember one cuddle and my sister has blanked out a lot of her childhood, my brother died at age 34 through drugs and alcohol.
    When I got married my grandmother sent me a cheque and all she could do was begrudge me and berate me that she never got sent any money. The emotional abuse was endless, if dad praised me for any small thing she would just sneer and when I got dressed up to go out as a naive 16 year old she called me a slut, I now realise it was envy. She can be nice at times and has mellowed with age but the old nasty bitter words about others and me behind my back still spill out of her from time to time. I live on the other side of the world from her now, but last time we went back for a visit it alternated between her giving me a hug and being all loving and saying nasty bitter things to my brother about me behind my back. My husband used to get angry at how upset I got every time she phoned me and exaggerated about her illnesses which always came to nothing.
    I have realised I will never get anything from her, not even my own opinion or word-in-edgeways but it has been a long road and the price has been my total lack of confidence in myself.

  15. this is my story…..
    iv been with my x fiancé for 5 years. We were meant to get married in a month but we had a massive fight and ended the relationship. He is very opinionated and disrespectful. I would constantly be watching what I say and walking on eggshells, to make sure it didn’t erupt into an argument. Every time i would bring a issue up he would say that if i don’t like his attitude i should leave.
    It was always one sided and he didn’t ever say sorry but place the blame on me. He would either give me the silent treatment or even hung up the phone me until i would admit its my fault.
    He would also always belittle me or even embarrass me, by that i mean if i said something he didn’t like he would say it in front of everyone what he thought.
    He would always make comments on how much Km/s my car had because my mum sometimes drove it. This would create a negative wedge between me and my mum and i would always take it out on her for using my car. AS the wedding was coming closer i was becoming more and more edgy and resentful for everything has done. His always manipulated me and made me think its my fault. My self esteem has gone to 0 and iv forgotten how to socialise due to everything he has said and done to me. I didn’t ever know what was the right or wrong thing, i always fearful of fighting and became very irrational to the fights. I use to be a calm and collected person. He holds grudges with everyone even his own family and that scared me the most, because it was over nothing that would hold this grudges.

    Its been one month and i feel very miserable and don’t know whether i made the right choice
    can someone tell me whether he is a narc

    1. You will fell miserable.no doubt you will even marry.I hope not but many before you have and many after you will despite the red flags.
      It’s the nature of the beast called narcism.
      It’s an evil addictive disease but it can be mastered eventually only by one method. NC. No contact.
      Narcs are only about themselves and how they stand to benefit from àny relationship so don’t take it personally.
      They will be like that with everyone.
      Learn from wat others are saying and think seriously about the oncoming consequences of your decision.
      Go with your gut.
      Research narssistic mates and parents.
      No matter how charming they may be wen the ring is on the
      Finger u will have maybe 3 sort of ok months and then will begin the long discard.
      Good luck

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