Only You Can Decide Whether Or Not No Contact Is Right For You

After recently being told yet again that I “should just cut ties” with my parents, I felt the need to write this post to remind everyone that only you can decide whether or not no contact is right for you.  I know, I’ve written several posts like this, but sometimes information bears repeating!

 

So many people who write about narcissistic abuse preach the value of no contact for the victim.  In fact, many say it is the only solution & you’re wrong to think otherwise.

 

The simple fact is though, that not every situation is the same.  Yes, no contact is a very good solution in many situations.  Often, it is the only solution.  That being said though, it isn’t the only option.

 

There are many people who are unable or unwilling to go no contact, especially when it comes to a narcissistic parent.  Some are forced to live with this parent due to financial reasons, & have no means to move.  Others want to go no contact, but don’t feel they are strong enough to do so just yet.  They’re working towards that goal.  Still others are fine with low contact, which is what I have chosen.  I deal with my parents as I feel able to do so.

 

There are no “one size fits all” solutions for victims of narcissistic parents.  Everyone is different & everyone copes with things differently.  Just because eliminating your narcissistic parent(s) from your life worked out great for you doesn’t mean it will work as great for someone else.  And, if you’re still in a relationship with your narcissistic parent, that doesn’t mean that solution works for everyone.  Never tell someone in similar circumstances to yours that they should just do what you did & if they do it, expect them to have the same results as you.  That won’t happen.

 

 

It also isn’t right to assume you know best what someone else needs to do with their life.  It’s judgmental & makes people feel stupid, as if they aren’t smart enough to figure out solutions on their own.  Being raised by a narcissistic parent, chances are the person already feels stupid, no matter how smart they are, especially if their mother was the engulfing type.  Telling that person what they need to do with their life reinforces that wrong belief.  Obviously you wouldn’t tell them what to do if you thought they were smart enough to figure this out on their own.  This is exactly how I feel when someone tells me what to do, especially when I didn’t ask for their input.  No matter how well meaning their words, I still have to battle feeling stupid.  On some level, it takes me back to my mother constantly telling me what to do or just doing things for me because according to her, I wasn’t doing it right or didn’t know what I was doing.  It’s not a nice feeling!  Would you really want to make someone feel that way?!

 

Instead of telling someone they should “just go no contact,” tell them you’re sorry for their pain.  Listen without judgment or trying to fix their problems.  If they ask for advice, rather than say, “If I were you, I would….”, phrase your advice gentler.  Ask, “Have you ever thought about doing…?”  “What about doing…do you think that would help?”  “Have you tried…?”

 

Offer to pray for & with that person.

 

Offer to take the person to lunch, to a movie or do something that person enjoys as a distraction.  Sometimes a little time away from problems can be very helpful.

 

There are ways you can help without telling a person what to do or hurting them any more than they’re already hurting.

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6 Comments

Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Christian Topics and Prayers, Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Mental Health, Narcissism

6 responses to “Only You Can Decide Whether Or Not No Contact Is Right For You

  1. Timing is everything. Looking back I feel that I should have gone NC in 2011 after a particularly horrendous episode of triangulation and verbal, emotional, and financial abuse by multiple members of my FOO. But I also recognize that I wasn’t ready at that time. When I did finally go NC in 2015 it was because I knew that there was no other choice if I was ever going to heal. I had done my research and spent many hours in prayer. I was ready because I was prepared spiritually and emotionally and I believe that’s the key. If someone is not ready for NC they know it and their decision should be respected.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Absolutely, Suzanne! No contact isn’t a decision to be made lightly, especially when one’s parents are concerned.

      And it’s also like I’ve said before- many don’t want to go no contact or are unable to do so for various reasons. Their decisions need to be respected as well. If the time comes for it, they’ll know.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Completely agree..It should never be forced onto anyone..It is a personal choice and each person has to first accept their parent’s narcissism, grieve for their lost childhood and only then can they decide what is right for them..

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Great advice Cynthia! No one knows what’s best for you but you! I have found that the opinion of too many just results in way too many voices in your head! That causes confusion; an emotion that I’ve been good at conjuring up on my own THANK YOU VERY MUCH! Lol! I’m at a place with my mom that I’ve had to stay away. It’s not permanent but a necessary lengthy distancing. For those of us who have a relationship with the Lord,we know we should be seeking his direction first and foremost. Especially with such complex matters as this.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Thank you!

    You are so very right! It only creates confusion in an already confusing situation! No contact is a decision is a very individual, personal decision, period.

    I’m sorry to hear about things with your mother. I understand though, as I’m in a similar position with mine. Distance can be very necessary for your mental heath. Sometimes permanent is best, sometimes not, but distance is truly our friend when dealing with narcissists!

    Liked by 1 person

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