Since Thanksgiving is a few days away, & many of you feel forced to deal with your narcissistic families on the day, I thought I would write a post for you in that position, Dear Readers.
All of us with narcissistic parents or in-laws know they can make the holidays hell on Earth, yet we often feel powerless to avoid these days. The good news is that you aren’t as powerless as you think.
You don’t have to spend holidays with your narcissistic family if you don’t want to. They don’t have the right to order you around! You’re a grown up, & have the right to spend the day however you like. You don’t owe them any explanations, nor should you feel guilty if you opt to go skiing, take a trip or spend the day with friends rather than spend the day with a narcissistic family.
If you cannot get out of the “forced family fun,” then maybe next time, you can prepare ahead of time to have other plans. For now, though, there are ways to cope.
Set boundaries on how long you will be at the gathering. When the time is coming for you to leave, leave. Don’t be talked into staying longer! Say you have plans with a friend, & don’t want to be late (not lying since you’re spending time with yourself & hopefully you’re your own best friend).
If you have a job that requires people to work on holidays, maybe you could arrange to work on that day. You’ll get extra pay (a bonus!) & have a legitimate excuse to leave early or not even attend.
If you have a significant other, I pray he or she is on your side. The support will be helpful for you, plus they can help you to escape. Have a code that tells the person, “I need to leave.” If you feel unable to go, your significant other can say, “It’s time for us to go.”
If you opt to do something without your family or spend less time with them than usual, chances are good they will pull out all the guilt stops on you, but remember- you do NOT have to blindly obey them! You have the right to do whatever you like to celebrate. You aren’t hurting them by doing something different- you’re being good to yourself. That doesn’t make you selfish, a bad son or daughter, etc. by being good to yourself. They will get over you not being there. Or they won’t. If they don’t, let them pout & be miserable if that’s what they want.
Take back your power, Dear Reader, & spend holidays however you like!