Narcissistic mothers have more than nine lives. When they convince you they are weak and vulnerable and you are so worried about them that you can’t sleep at night, that’s when they strike. If you go to visit them to bring whatever they must have, they look at you dismissively as if to say: “Why are you here?” or “You never come to visit me. What do you want from me this time?” No matter what you do for a narcissistic mother it will never be enough. Even when you are the child in the family who has been most devoted toward her with your actions that take away you time and energy when other siblings will not share the burden, these narcissistic mothers will talk behind your back to her other children. They are so cruel. This is because they have a severe personality disorder that you can’t cure. They are not going to change. You can find ways to cope with them if you can remain psychologically detached. This is a tall order and takes a lot of training and discipline. When you were a child it was hellish growing up with your narcissistic mother screaming at your dad all of the time. It broke your heart to watch him cower with fear like a small child himself. But he kept coming back for more. Growing up with a narcissistic mother carries a pain all of its own. If you haven’t experienced it, it is hard to explain. There is neglect, abuse, control, rage, dismissiveness and the absolute knowledge the child has that she/he will never be good enough to meet mother’s standards.
After going through these battles for so many years and paying the price—psychological, physical health issues, marital problems of your own caused by these dynamics, it could be time to say:”Enough” I will not let her pull me back down again into this intolerable inner place. I don’t deserve this. My focus needs to be on healing and becoming individuated from my mother—psychologically separate from her. This can be done. It is not easy. Sometimes contact has to be severed. In other cases there is minimal contact with rules that involve being treated with respect.
In the aftermath of making this change in your life, whatever form it takes, begin to look up rather than down. Begin with small steps–allow yourself to enjoy something each day that you love to do. Got out into your yard or look at the birds that inhabit the spaces around you. Take a walk with a friend. Develop a few relationships with people who are capable of hearing you and helping you make this transition of movement toward separating from mother. Look at all of your creative gifts. Start to use them now. Begin without being judgmental. Learn to quiet the mind through meditation or gentle yoga. Some form of aerobic exercise helps in these transitions. Aerobics makes you strong and increases your endorphins and aids sleep. Write down your thoughts and feelings. This is a freeing experience and a very creative one. Be patient with the healing process. The self is always in the process of growth. Take the obstacles out of the way and it will happen. Have faith in yourself to do this. Don’t be judgmental. Give yourself the warmth and tolerance you are always giving to others. To learn about the narcissistic personality in-depth, visit my website:thenaricssistinyourlife.com
Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.
Telephone Consultation: United States and International
Book: Freeing Yourself from the Narcissist in Your Life