Losing someone you love is incredibly painful & difficult, but when that person is your narcissistic parent, it’s also incredibly complex. Part of the complexity involves a lot of guilt. If you have lost a narcissistic parent, I’m sure you experienced it too. If you haven’t yet, you need to be prepared & know that it may happen with you, too.
The last time I spoke to my mother was May 5, 2016 when we had a huge argument. We hadn’t spoken in almost exactly 3 years when she passed away. Since she died, I’ve learned that her final years weren’t good. Apparently my mother’s health declined quickly. I noticed her handwriting became very shaky after our argument. I realized through her car’s maintenance records that she must have stopped driving in 2017 not long before my father died & found a fairly big dent in her car. Probably that was why she stopped driving – she realized she wasn’t as capable behind the wheel any longer. Clearly she also was very depressed. One friend of hers told me that my mother said that her cat was the only reason she wanted to live. Also when she died & I first started to care for the estate matters, her house was in a bad state because she was unable to clean it like she once had.
All of these things have led to me feeling a tremendous amount of guilt. Since I’m positive my situation isn’t terribly unique, I thought I would share ways I have learned to help ease that guilt.
I am truly blessed with having the most amazing best friend ever. She reminds me constantly that there is a natural order of things & people reap what they sow. My parents were abusive, which is why I went no contact. I wasn’t trying to be a jerk, contrary to what my family believes, I was only trying to protect myself. That is why every functional goes no contact, & that isn’t a bad thing. If you too went no contact with your abusive parent prior to their death, you did nothing wrong just like me. It was simply the natural order of things! If they wouldn’t have been abusive, you wouldn’t have been forced into going no contact.
What happens after no contact isn’t your responsibility, & you need to remind yourself of that constantly as do I. It’s so hard not to feel guilty in these situations when you learn your narcissistic parent suffered after you were no longer in his or her life. I feel like I should’ve been there for them & taken care of them. If only I could’ve stuck it out for another couple of years, I’ve said to myself. Guessing you feel much the same way. If so, remember, you severed those ties for very valid reasons. Probably many very valid reasons in fact. You did nothing wrong! Whatever happened after you went no contact is NOT your fault or responsibility. Besides, maybe there was a reason God wanted things to happen as they did. Me not being in my father’s life is why he turned to God at the very end of his life! How incredible is that?! Maybe that is what happened with my mother too, I’m not sure. All I know is she is in Heaven & that is a huge comfort! Anyway, ask God what the purpose was in you being no contact with your parent at the time of his or her death. He will answer that question.
Sometimes people may say cruel things about you not being there for your parent, making you feel worse. Remember that those people don’t know everything about the situation, which means they aren’t fit to judge it.
I know guilt after a narcissistic parent is very hard to handle. If & when you experience it, I hope you’ll remember this post. You have nothing to feel guilty about. You did the best you could in an impossible situation.