What To Expect When Your Narcissistic Parent Goes No Contact

As I’ve mentioned before, my parents have stopped speaking to me recently.  Since, I’ve been experiencing a plethora of emotions, & I’m going to hazard a guess they’re pretty normal under the circumstances.  I also realized when a narcissistic parent goes no contact with you, it feels a lot different than when you are the one to go no contact.  In 2001, I went no contact with my mother (she initiated contact with me in 2007, & I allowed her back into my life at that point).  Seeing both types of going no contact has been eye opening to me.  I’m hoping sharing this with you will help you if your parents have gone no contact with you.

 

When I went no contact with my mother, it’d been after a great deal of prayer & consideration on the subject.  I knew in my heart it was the best thing I could do, & I was as prepared as I could be to sever ties with my mother.  And, I only went no contact with my mother.  At the time, I had no knowledge at all of narcissism.  Naturally I didn’t realize my father was a covert narcissist & abusive in his own way that was different than hers, so I kept in touch with him.  Anyway, I was able to grieve losing my mother, then face some of my own issues stemming from her abuse.  The time apart was just what I needed at that time.  It was a good thing for me.

 

Fast forward to this year.  I answered my parents’ phone call not expecting the huge fight that followed.  It was a complete surprise.  I’d expected a bit of a disagreement, but not in the really big fight that actually took place with both of my parents.

 

I wasn’t surprised my mother stopped speaking to me afterwards.  She is the queen of the silent treatment, & I’m sure me defending myself to her was a huge narcissistic injury worthy of the silent treatment.  What did surprise me was my father.  Since he always wants to look like the good guy, I never expected him to stop speaking to me.

 

Another big surprise is when praying about the entire situation some time later, God told me He wants them out of my life.  I’m not sure if He means forever or a season just yet, but either way- that was a big surprise too.  He’s showed me repeatedly that I need distance from their toxicity.

 

The element of surprise can be pretty intense in such a situation.  For one thing, since narcissists are so obsessed with appearances, they seldom want to end contact with their own child because it might make them look bad.  Can’t have that now can we?!  So when they do sever ties, it can come as a complete shock.  Even though some time has passed, I still feel quite shocked at the turn our relationship took.

 

Also, any loss can trigger grief, even when the loss is your own dysfunctional & abusive parents.  When I first felt this grief, I wondered what was wrong with me.  These people have made my life a living hell ever since I can remember.  I should be glad they’re gone!  Why wasn’t I reveling in them being gone, I wondered.  God showed me that abusive or not, they’re still my parents.  Losing your parents, whether they’re loving or abusive, is a hard thing to handle for anyone.

 

No contact has triggered a lot of anger in me, too.  I’m angry my parents had the unadulterated gall to get mad at me when they were the ones clearly in the wrong in our argument.  It’s glaringly obvious to anyone who knows the story that they were wrong, yet they would prefer being wrong & pretending to be right than have me, their own daughter, in their life.

 

I’ve found too, that triggers are everywhere, & in strange places.  When I hear or read about a parent showing concern for their child, no matter the child’s age, it upsets me easily now.  It makes me sad since that’s something I’ve never had & never will have.  It also makes me angry because the reason for our fight, my late mother in-law, was never a source of concern for my parents when it clearly should have been.  I told them for years how cruel she was to me, & they truly did not care.  I know my mother didn’t even believe me when I said she choked me when my husband & I told her we had eloped.  (As if I’d make something like that up!)  You’d think a physical assault might warrant some concern from my parents, but it never did.  Anyone else I told that story to was shocked.  My parents?  Bored.

 

Intrusive thoughts have been a constant as well.  Things I’d really just as soon not think about pop into my mind constantly, against my will.  I can’t even escape at night because I have nightmares every single night.  I may not remember details of them, but I remember my parents were in them & I wake up feeling the anger, fear or depression I felt in the dreams.

 

There is sadness & depression too.  I think my parents’ going no contact with me has really made it sink in how little they have been there for me in my life.  This is just one more of those times.  Sure, growing up, they provided for some of my needs- I always had food, clothing & shelter- but there was no emotional nurturing or genuine love.  In fact, there was more abuse than anything else.

 

I also think these things were magnified because of the fact I was going through a particularly hard time at the time of our argument.  When you’re already stressed or upset, any little thing can feel even worse.  So when you experience something very painful, it really hurts, even worse than it would under better circumstances.

 

In spite of all of these negatives, something absolutely wonderful has come out of it all, & makes it all worthwhile.  Freedom!

 

Without my parents in my life, I have found a new freedom.  For the first time, I’m finally free to be the person God made me to be.  No longer do I need to be “on”  so much.  After all, when dealing with narcissists, that’s how it is- you’re on your guard the entire time you’re with them.  You also have to mentally prepare when you know you need to interact with them in the near future.  Finally, I’m able to relax.

 

I’ve also been able to get to know myself for the first time in my life.  Growing up, I was told who to be.  My ex husband tried to mold me into what he wanted me to be.  Later when I married my current husband, I tried to be what he wanted me to be & even what his mother wanted me to be in the hopes of making her hate me less.  In the last few years, I’ve tried off & on to be me, the person God wants me to be, & while I had some success with that, it’s been much more successful without my parents in my life. The constant disapproval of everything about me I think made me feel like who I am is a bad person, wrong, etc.  Without that disapproval, I’m free to be me.

 

I’ve realized something else good that came with this freedom.  Because I stood up to my parents during that argument in May, it’s given me a new confidence.  If I could stand up to them at that time when I felt weak & was caught off guard,  I can stand up to anyone about anything now.  In fact, that confidence even stirred a new fire in me to speak out more against narcissistic abuse.  I think that’s pretty cool!

 

God has been using this time apart in a great way for me.  As hard as it’s been, He has been carrying me through.  He had reasons for removing my parents from my life.  Allowing me to heal, enabling me to be more the person He created me to be & less who they want me to be & giving me more confidence to speak against narcissistic abuse have all been a huge blessing for me.

 

If your narcissistic parents have opted to go no contact with you, then please know it can be a blessing in disguise.  Yes, it hurts.   Yes, it’s mind boggling that they treated you so badly & had the gall to act like you’re such a bad person, they had to go no contact with you.  Yes, it makes you angry.  But, one thing about God is He can make good things come from bad situations.  Romans 8:28 states, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”  (KJV)  If you’re not seeing anything good, ask Him to make good come from this situation & to show you the good you need to see.

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14 Comments

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

14 responses to “What To Expect When Your Narcissistic Parent Goes No Contact

  1. “No contact has triggered a lot of anger in me, too.” That’s something that I’m experiencing about NC that I didn’t anticipate (and I should have). I’m more angry now than I was when I was being abused. Perhaps it’s because I’ve come out of the fog of abuse and I’m seeing things for what they were. When I was still enmeshed in the dysfunction of my FOO I had to suppress my emotions in order to survive. Now that I no longer need to do that my ability to feel my emotions is returning in spades. I’m of two minds about this. It’s uncomfortable and I need to be very careful not to allow my anger to cause me to sin by acting on that anger in destructive and self-destructive ways. But anger at injustice and cruelty is Gods way of telling us that we need to get away from what is hurting us so it’s a good motivator to remain NC when we are tempted to give the abuser another chance.

    Liked by 1 person

    • How could you have anticipated that anger, Suzanne? Not like you’ve done the no contact thing before! Not to mention, I don’t think many people talk about what happens after no contact.. at least I haven’t seen much about it.

      You hit that nail on the head. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that anger you feel. There are a lot of years of stuffed anger inside you. It’s time to get it out in healthy ways, & I’m sure you can do that without sinning.

      And yes, it’s a very good motivator to stay away! Anger, like all emotions, has a purpose! In spite of what our narcissistic parents told us, emotions aren’t wrong/bad/etc.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I said that I should have anticipated it because I had spent 5 years prior to going NC researching narcissism, NC, etc. Initially I was almost euphoric knowing that I’d never again have to experience their abuse. But eventually the anger set in and now I have to find a way to deal with it that isn’t counterproductive. We survivors who were raised without love and acceptance were deprived of an essential part of our growth as human beings. And when we are finally able to get away from the people who failed to give us the conditions that would have fostered that growth (and substituted soul-shattering abuse) we are forced to start from scratch to build the person we should have been all along. That is a monumental task! And it’s infuriating to me that we survivors should have to do that because of the selfishness and cruelty of our abusers. Yes, we’re strong and we can do it. But the point is that we should never have had to. And that is why I’m so angry, that and because to this day they won’t acknowledge the truth of what was done.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’re so right.. that is a source of anger for me too. I am so angry about having to pay for other people’s issues, yanno?

      What have you done so far to deal with your anger? One thing I do is write letters that I never show the person I’m angry with. Just let it allllllllll out in the letters. Sometimes I burn them too because there is something oddly healing in watching that go up in smoke. Sounds weird I’m sure, but it’s surprisingly helpful.

      I do wonder though if you’ll ever get over that anger entirely.. I mean, there is so much unfairness & brutality to narcissistic abuse! It’s absolutely maddening, especially since those people who are responsible don’t take responsibility for what they have done. I really wonder if anyone can let go of the anger about that entirely. I’ve been trying myself & haven’t had any luck with it.

      Liked by 2 people

      • I’m keeping a journal and in it I have recorded my memories of the abuse I experienced. It’s strange that I am remembering more every day since I went NC. But so far it hasn’t helped with the anger issue. Maybe it would help tp publish it. Or maybe it won’t help until there are no more memories to record because I’ve recorded them all. I don’t know. And a new wrinkle has emerged as I learned today that my NM has emotionally abused my sweet daughter. I’m livid but I’m going to pray before I take action. Abusing me is bad enough but abusing my kids is something else entirely. It just never ends.

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        • Goodness yes.. I’ve been remembering a lot too. It seems like once they’re gone, your mind decides it’s time to deal with every single thing. Thanks, mind.. lol

          You may be remembering things forever. Sorry to be the voice of doom & gloom, but I believe that’s often how it works. They do so much, & it takes time to deal with each thing, so it seems logical to me there will be things coming back for a long, long time.

          As for publishing, you’ll know what’s right to do with that. I found it empowering, but writing is my life. It may not feel that way for you. Prayer is the best place to start.

          Oh wow… I’m so sorry about your daughter! Yes, definitely pray first. You need a lot of wisdom on this situation for sure. I’ll be praying for you too.

          Liked by 1 person

    • Suzanne, what you wrote describes my feeling perfectly! Some self-help books say daughters of NM need to learn to mother ourselves, or develop an inner mother, but how do I know the appropriate way to mother the inner child when I’ve never been properly mothered?? Truly challenging to develop everything from scratch!!
      Sarah

      “We survivors who were raised without love and acceptance were deprived of an essential part of our growth as human beings. And when we are finally able to get away from the people who failed to give us the conditions that would have fostered that growth (and substituted soul-shattering abuse) we are forced to start from scratch to build the person we should have been all along. That is a monumental task! “

      Liked by 3 people

      • I have never understood how I’m supposed to “mother” myself. The whole problem is that I didn’t get what I needed from SOMEONE ELSE. There needs to be another person in this equation which involves a giver and receiver. One person cannot do both functions. I do agree that all survivors need to practice self-care, but that is not the same thing as mothering.

        Liked by 2 people

        • Suzanne,
          I totally agree with you. There’s a BIG difference between mothering and self-care. It would be lucky for some to receive a degree of mothering from their aunts or elder female close friends, if their mothers are incapable or just too selfish to mother their children. But sadly, none of my aunts were able to serve that role, and one of my aunts who used to be close to me got brainwashed by my NM with her lies, and became NM’s flying monkey over the past few years; thus, I lost the little support from that aunt. Now, pretty much, I’m on my own to deal with everything in life! *sigh~~*
          — Sarah

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          • I’m so sorry, Sarah, that you had tp grow up the way you did and that you have lost the little support you had. I have prayed for you, that God will heal your heart and send someone into your life who will give you the support you need. Sometimes even when we’re grown we meet someone who can fill the role of “mother” in our lives. In my case it was a very dear friend who always saw the best in me and never once questioned what I told her about how I was abused. She would listen to me for hours without ever suggesting that I “get over it” or “move on with my life”. She was my emotional champion and encouraged me to protect and stand up for myself but patiently waited for me to come to the decision to go NC on my own. I hope that every survivor of N abuse would have such a person in their lives.

            Liked by 1 person

            • Thank you, Suzanne, you are so kind! 🙂 Your dear friend is truly precious. I believe God has the best arrangement for us, though we might not see His wisdom right away. When I first discovere NPD in June, I went through almost a month of anger and even hatred toward my parents. But I’m over that now, because over the past 4 months, God has shown me that He has never abandoned me. I just had to develop my strength mentally, physically, and intellectually, and when the time was right, He showed me the truth! Sometimes, maybe being abused is a blessing in disguise, because God showed me through some synchronicities during the past 4 months that He keeps watching over me despite the ugliness of the human world. My prayer to you! ❤

              Liked by 2 people

  3. I too have no contact with my parents and although painful I have also found a greater sense of freedom. Thank you for sharing it’s good to know someone else understands

    Liked by 2 people

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