Tag Archives: mother

Being Judged For Not Having Children

I admit it.. I have another big pet peeve: people who label those of us without children as selfish.  After seeing a post on Facebook a little while ago that labeled someone else without children as selfish, I thought I would write a blog post about it.

 

Many people quickly judge people without children.  I’ve been called selfish, immature, told “the reason you don’t want kids is because of your mother” & also told I’d regret not having children one day.  None of that is even close to the truth, as is so often the case with those without children.

 

Some things to consider before judging are…

 

  • Maybe a person doesn’t have children because either she or her mate are infertile.  Infertility is an extremely painful thing for couples to experience.  It’s especially cruel to judge & criticize these people for not having children!  You’re plunging a knife into their hearts when you do that!
  • Some people don’t have children because they grew up in a dysfunctional environment & realize they don’t know how to be good parents.  If you grew up in an abusive or at least dysfunctional home, it’s hard to know how to be a good parent!  How is it selfish for someone who doesn’t know what it takes to be a good parent not to have children?
  • Some people always have felt more comfortable in the company of adults.  That is also me.  I preferred the company of adults, even as a child.  There are  a surprising number of people like me.
  • Not everyone can relate to children.  Some people who may not have spent a lot of time around children when they were growing up or were the youngest in their families may not be able to relate well to children due to not a great deal of experience around them.
  • Not wanting children doesn’t mean a person hates them.  A common belief for those of us without children is that we hate kids.  Sadly, some folks do feel that way.  That isn’t always the case though.  Personally, I don’t hate kids.  I just can’t understand them well.  Big difference between that & hating kids.
  • And, people who don’t want kids aren’t selfish!  We have given this serious consideration before coming to the decision not to have kids.  Another common misconception of childless folks is we’re just selfish jerks.  Nope.  We have given the topic of children a LOT of thought!  I even tried talking myself into wanting kids several times in my life, but it never felt right even as I said I wanted kids or dated men who wanted them.

 

If you speak with someone who doesn’t have children, please consider the things I’ve said & don’t judge or criticize them.  Everyone has different callings on their life.  Not every person feels called to be a parent.

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What It Really Means To Do Something For Someone’s Own Good

Romans 15:2  “Each of us should please our neighbors for their good, to build them up.”  (NIV)

One of the most common yet stupid things said to Christians in the situation of having a narcissistic parent is how you’re not a good Christian let alone son or daughter if you don’t do everything your parents want, right down to tolerating their abusing you.

Truly, some people have no concept of what it truly means to honor your parent.  They also must have missed Romans 15:2.  Take a moment to read that Scripture again…

“Each of us should please our neighbors for their good, to build them up.”

See that?  “..for their good…”  That doesn’t mean to do blindly for someone, it means to do things that benefit them.  Doing whatever your narcissistic parent wants doesn’t necessarily mean doing what is best for them.  Narcissists care more about what feels good at the moment than what is genuinely good for them.

So what is “for their good”?

  • Taking your elderly narcissistic parent to the doctor when sick.
  • Helping your parent by cutting their grass when their lawn mower is broken or washing their clothes when their washer is broken.
  • Buying them something you think your parent would like just to be a blessing.
  • Setting & enforcing boundaries.
  • Saying no.
  • Going no contact.

 

The last three items were pretty hard to consider good, weren’t they?  They really are good though, & I’ll tell you why.

 

All three of those behaviors are about boundaries, & boundaries are a VERY good thing.  Boundaries show others how you wish to be treated & gives people the option to treat you accordingly or not without forcing them to do something they don’t want to do.  Boundaries encourage good behavior while helping you not to be responsible for someone else’s behavior, feelings, etc.  In short, boundaries are a very loving behavior.  Granted, narcissist don’t see them that way, but it’s still true. (If you’re interested, I have a free “Boundaries” book study course & article about boundaries on my website.)

 

Saying no is also a good boundary behavior because nobody needs to go through life without being told no at some point.  Getting one’s way creates spoiled, entitled people with no regard for others (sound familiar??).  Narcissists don’t like to be told no, & will do whatever they can to avoid it, but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t hear no.  The more they hear it, the less they will demand of you.  This works well for you & at the same time, teaches the narcissist that you won’t tolerate being pushed around.  A very good thing for the narcissist to learn.

 

No contact also can be for someone’s good sometimes.  No contact should be the final step after trying to work out the relationship, & often, sadly, it’s very necessary with narcissists.  It can be good for narcissists though, because it shows them they simply can’t go around abusing people & expecting them to tolerate it indefinitely.  Also, you never know- maybe with you not in that person’s life, God will be able to reach her & help her to see the error of her ways.  Sometimes it takes having people out of a person’s life for them to turn to God.  (Granted, that is extremely rare, but with God, all things are possible.)   No contact also removes the opportunity for that person to sin by removing you to abuse from her life.  These things are all for the narcissist’s own good.

 

Doing something for someone’s own good never means giving someone whatever they want or tolerating abuse.  These never benefit anyone!  If someone suggests otherwise, they clearly have no idea what it means to love someone God’s way.

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Bad Decisions & Narcissists

Psychology fascinates me.  I like to understand what makes people tick & why they do the things they do, which explains my interest in true crime.  I’m this way even with narcissists.  While I never can agree with their abuse of course, I am still curious what makes them do the things they do.  Besides, I’ve learned understanding them to a degree helps me to keep a healthy perspective about who is really the abuser, & who is the victim.    A lifetime of gaslighting still can make it hard sometimes to remember who the real victim & abuser are.  (For the record, I don’t think anyone can fully understand a narcissist except for another narcissist, so I know I’ll never entirely “get” them.)

 

I would guess I’m not the only person who is interested in understanding how people think, so I’m sharing this in case anyone else may find this as interesting as I did.

 

God showed me something quite interesting just before my father died last October.

 

As I mentioned before, he was in the hospital for 20 days on life support.  In that time, I had people (some I didn’t even know) contacting me to tell me that I needed to see him before he died, “so he could die in peace.”  “After all, you only get one set of parents!”  “You need to put your feelings aside.” & the classic, “I understand why you won’t see him, but you need to go see him.” (How does that even make sense?!)   Yep, I heard a LOT of crap.  My phone also rang, sometimes for 20+ rings at a time or there were frequent repeated calls back from people I didn’t even know, but who knew my parents.  Thank God for caller ID!  I didn’t know the number but at least I knew the names, so I knew not to take those calls.  It was a very painful time.. not only because of losing my father but also because of the constant bullying & harassment from so many people, even total strangers.

 

A few days before my father died, I was thinking about the entire situation.  It made me cry, as it did a lot at that time.  In my sadness I asked God, “Why do things have to be this way?!  This whole thing is so stupid & so wrong!”  Very clearly, I heard His voice… “Some people have made very bad decisions.”

 

It struck me.. that makes so much sense.  I knew exactly what He meant by that simple sentence!

 

Narcissists decide to act as they do.  They decided early in their lives that they were more important than other people & entitled to whatever they want.  They decided to shut down the natural empathy that people are born with & focus only on their wants, needs, etc. instead of caring about others.  They also decided they are allowed to use & abuse people to get what they want.

 

Flying monkeys also made a decision to be blindly loyal to their narcissist no matter what.  They decided they didn’t want to know anything beyond what the narcissist says about a situation.  They also decide to harass, stalk, shame & basically torture a victim if that’s what a narcissist wants of them (& often it is).  All flying monkeys have decided that a narcissist’s victim does NOT matter, only the narcissist & flying monkey matter.

 

Bad decisions like these are why people are abusive.  They have chosen to put themselves first & to disregard & even abuse other people.  This means the responsibility of their actions is completely on them.  No one  forced anyone to make the decisions they made.  No one forces them to continue making bad decisions or to continue the dysfunctional course they’re on.

 

These bad decisions also open the door for Satan to enter their lives, & close it for God to enter.  Every bad decision opens the door wider for the devil while closes it tighter to God.  I firmly believe that narcissism isn’t necessarily something biologically wrong with a person, but is demonic in nature.   2 Timothy 2:25-26 says, “He must correct those who are in opposition with courtesy and gentleness in the hope that God may grant that they will repent and be led to the knowledge of the truth [accurately understanding and welcoming it], 26 and that they may come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, having been held captive by him to do his will.”  (AMP)  The day my father died, a dear friend of mine received a vision from God about his salvation.  God reminded her of this verse at that time.  He said that is why my father behaved as he did- he had been taken captive by the devil to do his will.  Not long after he died, I thought about that Scripture & how it related to the bad decisions God told me about.  It makes a great deal of sense!

 

One thing many people fail to realize though is everything a person decides to do sows a seed, good or bad.  Galatians 6:7 says,  “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.”  (KJV)  A person who abuses other people will NOT reap a harvest of love & kindness.  It’s only natural!  You can’t plant corn & expect to get an apple tree!

 

And, everyone has a point where they’ve had enough.  When they walk away, that is because the abuser is reaping their harvest.  I know, abusers & flying monkeys see this very differently, but it’s true.  No one who walks away is trying to punish or hurt the narcissist (we all realize that’s impossible anyway- narcissists don’t feel the way normal people feel).  We decide to walk away to protect ourselves & to stop the constant abuse.  It is a perfectly normal thing to do.  It is the natural harvest a person reaps after deciding to sow seeds of abuse in another person’s life.

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Infantilizatation & Narcissistic Parents

Narcissistic parents are not like normal parents in so many ways.  One of those ways is they never want their children to grow up.  Why?  Because a child is much easier to control than a self sufficient adult.

So how is something like this possible?  Narcissistic parents make their children feel like they are forever the child, & the parent is forever the adult.  This is done primarily through emotional warfare, such as making the child feel shame, fear, manipulating the child & reminding that child who the “adult” is in this situation.  To show you what I mean, I’ll share some examples from my life.

I was a teenager in the 80’s.  My friends were wearing make up by the eighth grade,  & dating by the same time.   I however, was unable to wear even lipstick before ninth grade.  It took a great deal of begging on my part to be able to wear more makeup in ninth grade.  Also, although my mother had told me for years that I could date at 16, when I met my now ex husband just prior to turning 17, my mother went completely ballistic at the prospect of me dating.  In fact, she accused me of outrageous behaviors at that time, such as having sex with the entire high school football team & doing drugs.  Her abuse hit its peak at that time, all because I admitted to wanting to date & called her out on saying I could date at 16.  She refused to let me date until 1 week before my eighteenth birthday.

Another way my mother & many other narcissistic mothers keep their children childish is to control their appearance.  My mother has dressed much the same way my entire life, & she always has attempted to make me dress a lot like her.  I remember in late elementary school, sitting in a fitting room, fuming because my mother wanted me to like the hideous dark blue polyester pantsuit she insisted on buying for me.  It was absolutely her taste, not mine, & no matter how much I stated my hatred of it, she was determined to make me wear it.  As a teen in the 80’s, you would think I would have had mall bangs, pegged jeans & some of the other embarrassing fashion trends of the time, but nope.. instead, I dressed like a frumpy, middle aged housewife.  Even as an adult, my mother would buy me clothes in her taste, not mine.  One Christmas she got us matching shirts.

Age appropriate activities were also discouraged.  School dances were not approved of, although I was able to attend a couple as long as I didn’t have a date.  If my mother asked if I danced & I said yes, I was shamed for that.  I was also not allowed to get a driver’s license until I was 18, & my mother could no longer legally stop me.  She did, however, hide my birth certificate & showed it to the employee at the DMV while not allowing me to see it.

 

I moved out of my parents’ home just after I turned 19.  My mother was livid.  She told me I’d never make it on my own, I’d be back in six months & other nasty things.  I felt then like she took me moving out as a betrayal, not as a natural course of events.

 

Once out on my own, my mother immediately broke her key in the front door, claiming it wasn’t her fault.  My father ended up replacing all the door locks on the house.  I don’t think it was an accident- I firmly believe it was my mother’s way of making sure I didn’t come back into her house since I had forgotten to give her my key back after moving out.

 

Being on my own didn’t stop her infantilizing behavior either.  My mother constantly did little things to show me she disapproved of where I was living or how I maintained my home.  She would inspect a glass before drinking out of it, obviously making sure it was clean enough to drink from, tell me I didn’t vacuum frequently enough or insult the town where I live claiming only “snobs” live here.

 

Behaviors like this are not only painful for the child (no matter her age) to live with, they also create a deep seeded insecurity & anxiety in the child.  Prior to learning about infantilization, a child may grow up overly dependent on the parent doing the infantilization.  The child thinks that parent knows so much more & she can do nothing without that parent’s wisdom.  The child doesn’t trust herself.  When a parent treats a child as if “Mother/Father knows best” no matter the child’s age, it ruins the child’s ability to trust in her own intelligence or instincts.

 

Once an infantilized person realizes what has happened, reversing the damage takes a LONG time & a lot of work.  I was 16 when I began to see that the things my mother thought I should do/wear/like/drive/etc. & her opinions weren’t good for me- they were good for her.  I am now 47 & I still have doubts about myself more often than I care to admit.  Even so, the amount of time & energy I’ve put into shutting out her behavior has been worth it to learn to trust myself.

 

I wasn’t a Christian when I first began this journey, so honestly prayer wasn’t involved at first.  However, now when I have doubts, I run to God immediately.  I ask Him “Is this OK?”  “Should I do/not do that?” or any question I have.

 

I also have found it valuable to question everything.  When my mother would give me an article of clothing & say I should like it, I questioned myself- do I really like this?  Why?  If she told me I should or shouldn’t do something, I also questioned myself- What will happen if I do/don’t do this?  Will it benefit me?  Even now that my mother has been out of my life for two years, I still do this behavior if I have any doubts.

 

Getting to know yourself, your real self & not the self your parent(s) tried to make you into is also invaluable.  The better you know your true likes & dislikes, the less doubt you will have & the more you will trust your own decisions.  One way to get to know yourself is to learn your Myers Briggs personality.  I found it to be an indispensable tool in getting to know myself!  If you are interested in taking the test, you can find it at this link: http://www.humanmetrics.com/cgi-win/jtypes2.asp  There is also a list that describes all of the types at this link.

 

You also have to learn to trust your instincts.  I believe they are the voice of the Holy Spirit guiding us, which is why they are so wise.  Infantilization ruins one’s ability to trust one’s own instincts, unfortunately.  Try listening to those gut feelings on small stuff, then work up to bigger issues.  It really gets easier the more you do it.

 

As hard as it can be, you really can conquer the damage done by infantilization!

 

 

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Grief After Narcissistic Abuse

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Are You Considering Going No Contact?

There is a lot of information out there about going no contact, but not a lot of it is good, in depth information.  It isn’t always helpful for those who are seriously considering going no contact with their narcissistic parent.  The purpose of this post is to provide a deeper look at things to consider when going no contact.

 

No contact is a very serious decision, & never should be entered into lightly.  Never, ever initiate it unless you know beyond a shadow of a doubt that it’s the right thing for you to do.  Never initiate it during the heat of the moment such as during an argument.  Only initiate it after a great deal of serious prayer & consideration.

 

No contact also is a permanent decision.  If you resume contact with a narcissist, chances are excellent that this person’s behavior will be a LOT worse than it was before you started no contact.  If you let that person suck you back into a relationship or if you are the one who initiates contact again is not important.   The important thing is you’re back.   The narcissist will start out behaving with you to test the waters, but that won’t last long.  They see you as being weak with weak boundaries (easy prey in other words), since you allowed this relationship to be reconciled.   Also, since you set that boundary of no contact, you must be punished for that as well.  This is why no contact must be a permanent decision!  Once ties are severed, accept no communication from the narcissist at all.  Block all emails, phone numbers, social media accounts.. any access that person can use to contact you.  If they find ways around it, block that access too.  You may need to change your email address, phone number or name on your social media accounts.

 

No contact isn’t easy.  You lose people you never expected to lose from your life, even family members.  That is incredibly painful, but it’s very common.  It seems to me that the majority of people would rather side blindly with the narcissist than stand up for what’s right.  Maybe they’re afraid of facing the narcissist’s wrath if they side with you.  Maybe they think it’s easier to get you to change than the narcissist & they’re just looking for an easy way out of this situation.  Or, maybe they’d rather think of you as bad, wrong, crazy, etc. than admit to themselves that you were abused & they didn’t protect or help you.  Whatever their “logic”, it’s still going to hurt you a LOT when they abandon you in favor of your abuser.  On the good side though, you do find out who your real friends are.  Those who stand by your side even if they don’t understand the situation are your real friends.  Those who don’t judge you or tell you that you need to “forgive & forget” are your real friends.  Those who refuse to give your abuser the time of day are also your real friends.

 

Your emotions are going to go haywire for a while.  I believe this is because your mind is finally free from constantly having to think about the narcissist.  They seem to take up all the room in any relationship, leaving no room for you or even for you to think about things other than them.  You are to find ways to appease & please them, avoid their wrath, anticipate all  of their needs & wants, prop up their ego at all times & more.   Then, once you realize how messed up all of this is, you need to find ways to stop providing them with narcissistic supply, battle their gaslighting so you can keep your sanity & avoid them as much as possible.  Any relationship with a narcissist is a LOT of work!  Once that is done, it’s like your brain finally realizes it’s free of that, & decides now is the time to start dealing with that stuff it couldn’t deal with when in the relationship with the narcissist.  All kinds of memories come to the surface & with them, a ton of emotions.  Even when memories aren’t popping up, your emotions can go haywire because finally you can feel instead of only focusing on the narcissist.

 

If anyone tells you that no contact is taking the easy way out, don’t listen to them.  No contact is usually the necessary step to take, but that doesn’t make anything about it easy!

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Why Doesn’t My Mother Love Me?

One thing all daughters of narcissistic mothers have wondered at some point or another is why can’t their mothers love them.  It’s a completely normal thing for any child to wonder when raised by a narcissistic mother.  Unfortunately, it’s also damaging to a child, even into adulthood.

 

Most children, even adult children, will try to please their narcissistic mother in order to earn her love.  They try to be sweet, get better grades, participate in whatever activities Mom wants them to participate in & more trying to earn her love.  It doesn’t help that others encourage this behavior.  If they know your relationship has problems, often people will encourage you to try to fix it.  They often say the stupidest things such as, “You only get one mother so you need to find ways to get along with her.”  “Of course she loves you!  She’s your mother!”  “She did the best she could!”  “She just doesn’t know how to show love very well, but she does love you!”  Statements like this only leave a person feeling worse because now they feel even more guilt & shame for not being able to make their mother love them.

 

I understand how this feels.  I felt awful for years because I knew my mother didn’t love me.  I figured something must be terribly wrong with me if my own mother couldn’t love me.  Thank God that He has set me free from this thinking!

 

I thank God for teaching me about who I am in Him.  This has been vital!  The Bible has so many wonderful things to say about who we are as children of God.  I wrote out a list of these things on my website.  Check it out at : http://cynthiabaileyrug.com/Positive-Affirmations.php

 

Anther thing God did to help me be free from wondering why my mother doesn’t love me was to teach me about Narcissistic Personality Disorder.  Learning about it has helped me tremendously!  I finally learned that my mother is incapable of loving anyone- it’s not just me she can’t love.  She can’t truly love anyone because of NPD.  It has been incredibly freeing learning that!  I no longer feel I am a terrible person because my mother can’t love me because I know it’s about her inability to love, not my lovableness.

 

This is true for you as well, Dear Reader!  Just because your mother didn’t love you, that doesn’t mean you aren’t worthy of love- it means something is wrong with her, not you!  Learn all you can about Narcissistic Personality Disorder.  Reread the information a few times if it helps- I do!  I read about it often, & some things I reread often.  It really does help to remind yourself often that she has problems, because when you really know that, you will stop blaming yourself & thinking you’re a bad, unlovable person because your mother doesn’t love you.

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False Beliefs Narcissistic Parents Teach Their Children

Narcissistic parents might like to think they’re the best parents ever, but they are so far from it.  They instill the worst possible beliefs in their children that often follow (well, maybe more like haunt) those children for the rest of their lives.  Below is a list of a few of them.

 

  1. “You need to be able to do anything & everything I tell you to, no matter what!  Not because you’re talented or capable, so don’t think that!  But because I want you to do those things!”  Narcissistic parents are a confusing group.  One way they are confusing is treating their children like they should be able to do anything, yet also making sure they know they aren’t smart, talented or capable.  As an example, my parents were very parentalizing.  In other words, they wanted me to take care of them rather than them taking care of me.  Even as a young child, they’d come to me with complaints about their marriage & sometimes, they’d expect me to fix whatever disagreement it was that they had.  I was just supposed to know how to fix things for them, but at the same time, both let me know they didn’t think I was smart.  This type of behavior can lead to an adult who is terrible at self care.  The adult may not recover as long as necessary from surgery, may go back to work immediately after giving birth or experiencing a trauma such as the death of a loved one.  They don’t take care of themselves because they believe they don’t deserve to.
  2. “If you want to be loved, you have to earn it.”  Narcissists actually have no real grasp on what it means to truly love someone.  What they call love is conditional love at best.  They will abuse their children & only stop it when the children do things that please them.  This makes children of narcissists work so hard to please their parents.  They are so starved for love, they’ll do about anything for their parents in order to earn some “love.”  This can lead to adult children of narcissists who are frequently used & abused.  They try to earn love from others.  Abusers seek this out in a victim, because it means that victim will put up with anything.
  3. “Your worth depends on what you do only.”  Related to #2, this means that you only have value when you please the narcissist.  If you discovered the cure for cancer, Alzheimer’s & heart disease, & made it free & readily available to every human being on the planet, if your narcissistic parent didn’t have a vested interest in these cures, your parent would still see you as worthless.  Yet, if you bought a pen for your parent you knew she liked, it would gain more approval than inventing those cures.  She would see you as more worthy for getting her that pen than when you invented the cures for diseases that plague humanity.
  4. “Your emotions aren’t important.  In fact, you aren’t allowed to have them!”  The only person that really matters to a narcissist is that narcissist.  No one else is even human, merely a tool to be used.  Don’t “bother” a narcissistic parent with your feelings.  After all, tools don’t have feelings, so you shouldn’t either.  Besides, their emotions are the only important ones!  Adult children of narcissists have become professionals at stifling their emotions.  As a result, they end up miserable or sick (high blood pressure, heart problems, depression, anxiety, etc.).

 

All of these false beliefs are just that- FALSE!  They have no basis in reality.  Their basis is in the narcissist’s reality which is a world full of insanity.  If you grew up learning such nonsense, then Dear Reader, it’s time to get rid of those false beliefs.  Ask God to tell you the truth.  Are you worthy?  Are you deserving of love or does it depend on what you do?  Any questions you can think of, ask Him & listen to what He has to say.  You will find out quickly that these beliefs are not true.  God thinks so much more of you than your narcissistic parent did.  Let Him show you what He thinks of you.  It’ll heal you & bring you joy.

 

 

 

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Narcissists & Feigning Ignorance

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For My Narcissists & Flying Monkeys

Tomorrow it will be three months to the day since my father passed away.  I still am trying to recover from the inundation of abuse I received when he was dying.  The abuse was so constant & intense, & it put me in a state of shock that is still there.  It lifts a bit from time to time, allowing me to face some of the emotions that were too difficult to deal with at the time (hence the shock), then it returns.

 

During those times that the shock lifts, the thing I feel most frequently is anger.  At the moment, I feel that anger.  One thing I find very therapeutic during times like this is writing journal entries where I let it all out.  It’s helpful to get it out of me, even though no one else has any idea what I am feeling or thinking beyond God & I.

 

I was going to write this in my journal for no one to see, as usual, but I felt like God wanted me to share it here instead.  This Scripture kept coming to my attention:  Ephesians 5:11   “Take no part in the worthless pleasures of evil and darkness, but instead, rebuke and expose them.”  (TLB)  I’m sure my readers will get where I’m coming from & maybe my vent will help them too somehow.  Besides, I  have NO doubt some of those monstrous flying monkeys are nosy enough to read my blog.

 

To my mother & her devoted flying monkeys,

 

First of all.. to my mother.  Did it ever cross your mind why I never respond to your letters or calls or those from your evil minions?  It’s because I don’t want you in my life.  I absolutely will not tolerate any more of your abuse.  I deserve better than that.  I’m sorry things are as they are, but your actions have made this situation what it is.  Besides, let’s not forget- after our last conversation, you didn’t even try to contact me until months later, when my father was sick.   I figured you were as done with me as I was with you.  None of this means I hate you.  It means I care about me enough to protect myself by staying out of your life.

 

To the rest of you who have harassed, bullied, judge, criticized & tried to control me, especially during my father’s final few weeks of life…

 

You truly should be ashamed of your terrible, ridiculous, wicked actions!  You judge me for not speaking to my parents or saying good bye to my father on his death bed, but has it ever crossed anyone’s mind WHY I stayed away?  No.  You obviously don’t want to be “bothered” with the truth.  All that mattered is what *you* thought I should do.  How utterly arrogant!

 

What made you think you had the right to demand I do as you told me to anyway?  Have you made so many good life choices that I couldn’t help but see how wise you are & would be inspired to obey you?  No.  Did you know my entire situation & could say with complete objectivity what a good solution would have been?  No.  Did any of you even care about me enough to ask what was wrong?  Again no, with only one exception & I have no doubt that person would have only told me how wrong I was if I opened up to her.  Again.

 

Then there were the guilt trips:  “You only get one set of parents.”  “A little forgiveness would do you some good.”  “You need to put your feelings aside & see your dad so he can die in peace.”  “You need to come NOW so they can turn off your dad’s life support.”  “You would understand if you had kids.”  What utter drivel!   Thanks to growing up in the environment I did, I’m like a guilt trip Navy seal.  They do NOTHING to me other than insult my intelligence because you think I’m stupid enough to fall for such complete & utter nonsense.

 

And really… has the constant barrage of your crap really been necessary?!  One would think you would have the sense to realize that when someone not only doesn’t respond to your calls, emails, etc. but *blocks* your Facebook, phone numbers, emails, etc.  that means that person doesn’t want to talk to you & you should stop your harassment.  Blocking you is NOT an invitation to use alternative means to try to reach me, which I blocked too!  The constant harassment has been beyond ridiculous.  Letting my phone ring for five minutes straight also doesn’t make me want to answer it, especially when I haven’t even seen you since before I started school!  It does show me you’re a control freak who thinks they have the right to boss me around by trying to force me to take your call.  Just because you’re some distant relative doesn’t mean you have the right to tell me what to do!  Same with the written contacts.  Filling my inbox with messages just makes me want to ignore you, because you’re being controlling.  Using a dead woman’s Facebook to contact me was unique though.  I’ll give you points for creativity on that.  I never expected to have to block a dead woman on Facebook.

 

Oh, & to that one person that has harassed me since 2013-  I know that email through my website was from you.  Wasn’t hard to figure out it was you or the fact you copied & pasted information from the Mayo Clinic’s website about NPD.  That isn’t the first time you’ve pulled this.  You might want to stop using the first or second site that pops up on Google- that gives you away every time.  Doing it at the time you chose to do it this time was truly low even for you.

 

Trying to bully my cousin I’m close to into bullying me was utter nonsense too.  Unlike you, he isn’t a control freak who thinks he can boss me around, which, fun fact here, is partly why he & I are so close.  How about taking a page from his book & realizing that being a manipulative bully isn’t a good thing.

 

And, just so all of you know….

 

I want absolutely nothing to do with any one of you!

 

You don’t have the ability to control or hurt me, in spite of all your efforts to do so.

 

Being related to me somehow doesn’t give you the right to treat me like crap & boss me around.

 

You taught me some things through it all, including how never to treat people, & the value of questioning things rather than blindly believing whatever we’re told.

 

Even though I want nothing to do with you, I don’t hate you.  I pity you.

 

I pray for all of you daily.  I pray you come to know God & His love & are blessed.  Since so many of you are so incredibly quick to judge me, I’m sure you think I’m a hypocrite, a terrible/fake/not a real Christian, etc. for saying that last statement after writing this post.  I can assure you, I am true to my faith.  There is nothing “un Christian” in writing this post.

 

Ephesians 5:11   “Take no part in the worthless pleasures of evil and darkness, but instead, rebuke and expose them.”  (TLB)

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Coping When Narcissists Hit A New Low

I got quite the surprise this past Christmas.  A letter from my parents’ attorney arrived in the mail two days before Christmas.

 

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Pretty special, huh?  Notice it was sent both regular & certified mail.

 

I’m sharing this not only for entertainment value (really- how bizarre is this?!) but also to remind you that there is no low that is too low for any narcissist & to help you to cope when things like this happen to you.

 

To cope, you need to think logically not emotionally.  You certainly will need to deal with the anger or hurt or whatever you feel, of course, but when trying to find the best way to deal with a bad situation, it’s best to leave emotions out of it as they can cloud your judgement.  Look at the problem from all angles & ask God for help figuring out ways to cope.  One way that might help is if you think of the problem as if a friend came to you with it- what would you tell that friend?

 

Also trying to understand the motivation behind the actions, because that can help you.  I firmly believe everything narcissists do boils down to gaining narcissistic supply.  Once I realized that, it helped me not to be as hurt or angered (because what they did wasn’t personal- it was to benefit them), or to be manipulated.

 

To show what I’m talking about, I thought I’d share my thoughts about this letter:

 

Notice the timing.. as I said, this arrived two days before Christmas, the last possible day to get anything in the mail before Christmas day.  Growing up, I loved Christmas.  My mother thinks I still do, & never believed that I have grown to hate it.  It’s safe to assume the timing was an attempt to ruin my holiday.  If she thinks she ruined my holiday, that’s narcissistic supply.

 

Check out the wording in the letter.  The lawyer could have mentioned asking me about the car on my mother’s behalf without the attempt to manipulate me & the comments such as “accept this as a heartfelt expression of her love.”  Totally unnecessary.  That was flying monkey behavior which means it has no basis in truth & reality.  Why should I take anything he said seriously under such circumstances?!

 

Also.. as I said, it came from an attorney.  Seems obvious to me that was meant to shake  me up a bit.  Who wouldn’t be upset seeing a letter from an attorney in their mailbox & then a notice it was also sent certified mail prior to learning the contents of the letter?!  More potential narcissistic supply for my mother- upsetting me.

 

I also think it’s safe to assume that being from her attorney was an attempt by my mother to force me to deal with her.  Manipulation attempt/more narcissistic supply.

 

When I first got this letter, it did shake me up, I’ll admit it.  I was livid my mother would go to this extent to try to get me in touch with her when it’s very clear I want no parts of her in my life.  But, after some time to pray, calm down & think clearer, I realized the things I mentioned.  This letter wasn’t a huge deal like it felt like at first.  It simply was my mother’s means of attempting to manipulate me & gain her precious supply.  Realizing all of this meant I was able to relax & decide the best way to handle the situation properly.

 

Dear Reader, I’m sure if you haven’t faced some especially low behavior from the narcissist in your life, you will.  It’s how they operate.  When that happens, please consider this post.  Deal with your emotions but not while trying to consider how to handle the situation.  Pray & use logic.  It will help you to understand what’s happening, which will enable you to come up with the best solution.

 

Oh, & if you’re interested.. I did write back to the attorney about a week later.  All I said was “Regarding your recent letter about my mother, I don’t want my father’s car.”  I decided that I should respond rather than take a chance of my mother finding other ways to harass me about this situation, since I’ve had enough harassment to last a lifetime.  I did so in my own timing, however, to let her know she can’t make me do anything her way.  I also decided it’d be best to acknowledge NONE of the flying monkey nonsense or say anything that could be read into, which is why my entire “letter” lasted ONE sentence.  🙂

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Why Adult Children Of Narcissists End Up In Abusive Relationships

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Why Adult Children Of Narcissists End Up In Abusive Relationships

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Responding vs Reacting To Narcissistic Behavior

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Talking About Narcissism

“If I were to remain silent, I’d be guilty of complicity.”
― Albert Einstein

 

Silence is a narcissistic abuser’s best friend.  Silence not only allows abusers to continue to abuse, it basically encourages them to abuse.  When abusers don’t have consequences or anyone saying, “What you’re doing is wrong”, what motivation could they possibly have for changing their behavior?

 

By silence, I am not only referring to the silence of the victim, but others as well.   If the child of one of your relatives is being abused, but no one speaks up, the abuse will most certainly continue.  If no one gets involved, why should the abuser stop abusing?  The abuser is getting what he or she wants, which is all that matters to that person.  There is no motivation to stop abusing.

 

Some people may find this speaking out to be immature, holding a grudge or even “un-Christian”  behavior, but it really isn’t.  Ephesians 5:11 says,   “Take no part in the worthless pleasures of evil and darkness, but instead, rebuke and expose them.”  (TLB)  

 

Narcissism must be rebuked & exposed!  Allowing narcissists to continue to abuse their victims without consequences does no one any good whatsoever!  Abusers continue to hurt people & victims continue to suffer so long as no one speaks out.

 

As victims, we must speak out about our experiences.  Other victims need to know that they aren’t alone, they aren’t crazy or to blame for the abuse as their abusers have told them they are & that there is life after narcissistic abuse.  They also need to know ways to cope with a narcissist if they are unable or unwilling to be no contact & no one but another victim can share successful ways to do that.

 

If you aren’t a victim, however, but you know someone who is, you’re not off the hook!  If you know someone who is being abused, support & help that person however you can.  Listen, offer advice if that person asks for it, pray for & with that person & even learn about NPD.

 

And, everyone must understand what narcissistic abuse & NPD really are.  The meaning of the word “narcissism” has been so tainted.  Many people think being narcissistic is the same thing as being selfish when in fact, it is so very much more than simple selfishness.  The true meaning of narcissism is so diluted & that needs to change!  Raising awareness by talking about narcissistic abuse & NPD openly will help to make that change.

 

So remember, Dear Reader- speak out about narcissistic abuse!  Help to raise awareness!  Help victims!

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How To Go No Contact

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Going No Contact Doesn’t Fix Everything

There is a good amount of information out there about going no contact with narcissists.  Many articles make it sound like going no contact will solve all of your problems.  It definitely solves some.  No longer having a narcissist in your life means you are no  longer abused, which of course is a great thing.  However, even so, it doesn’t solve all of your problems!

 

When a person has eliminated a relationship, people always seem to have opinions.  There are even more opinions when the relationship in question is with a parent.  The adult child is often referred to as selfish, spoiled, ungrateful, unreasonable & more.  People often act as though you made this choice on a whim, when nothing could be further from the truth!  The worst part is this judgement often comes from people close to you that you never expected would behave like this towards you.  Not only does what they say hurt a great deal, but some people will side with the narcissistic parent & abandon you.  Rarely does a person who severs ties with a parent have many allies.

 

Going no contact also doesn’t heal the wounds that your parent inflicted upon you.  Those wounds are still there.  You still are going to wake up each morning with C-PTSD, anxiety &/or depression.  If you also were physically abused, the scars aren’t going to vanish just because your abusive parent is out of your life either.

 

In fact, I found in my experience and in talking to others that after implementing no contact, suddenly they felt they had more issues to deal with than they had previously.  Repressed memories came up, they had more nightmares than usual, anxiety was much worse, they were very depressed & more.  I firmly believe the reason for this is because when you’re in a relationship with a narcissist, that narcissist basically takes up almost all of your thoughts.  You’re so busy trying to figure out ways to please them or at least not trigger their wrath.  You may be trying to find a way to escape the relationship unscathed.  You’re definitely trying to maintain your sanity in an insane situation.  Once the relationship is over, those things are gone.  Your mind is free of a huge burden.  Now it’s time to process all of what you have been through, & your emotional floodgates let loose.  It can be pretty scary & overwhelming.  I try to make the best of it, & remember these things that have come up are doing so for a reason.  I talk to God about them, & write about them in my journal as ways to help me heal.

 

No contact is a very viable solution when dealing with narcissists.  Often, it is the only solution.  However, it isn’t an easy one.  Dear Reader, if you’re considering going no contact, please know that it won’t solve all of your problems.  It will help you a great deal, but don’t expect it to be easy.

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Why Having A Narcissistic Parent Is So Damaging

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Understanding Your Abuser vs Justifying Their Abuse

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How Families Protect Their Narcissist

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Things To Watch Out For When Going No Contact

If you are at the point in your relationship with the narcissist in your life where you are ready to go no contact, I truly wish you the best.  It’s not an easy decision to make, so it shows you have courage & strength just to make the decision.  You’ll need it to follow through with it.

 

So many people that write about narcissistic abuse make it sound like it’s all so simple.  “Just” cut the abuser out of your life & all will be fine from now on.  Unfortunately, that is very far from true!

 

The narcissist may not respect your decision.  Narcissists don’t respect boundaries, so why would they respect this one?  They think they alone should decide what happens in relationships, & if the other person in the relationship makes any decisions like setting boundaries, that person is wrong.  They often do things like constantly trying to contact you via phone, email, text or social media.  They sometimes say they want to know what’s wrong, but truth be told, they only want to tell you why you’re wrong for feeling the way you do.  They also may say they’re sorry.  Listen to the apology if one is offered.  Most likely it’ll be a fake apology designed to pacify you & lure you back into the relationship.  Something like “I’m sorry if I hurt you”  “I’m sorry you feel that way” or lame excuses for their behavior.  A genuine apology offers no excuses, genuinely admits to wrongdoings & behavior changes.  Use your discernment & what you have learned about narcissism so you don’t fall for the act & apology!

 

Granted, most narcissists smear their victims behind their back for years in order to discredit the victim (in case the victim tells others of the abuse, she won’t be believed), but it gets worse once you initiate no contact.  The narcissist will tell anyone who will listen about how mean you are, how you hurt her, how she doesn’t understand why you’d behave this way & more.  This is basically damage control- if the narcissist can convince others you are mentally unbalanced or even just a bad person somehow, others will believe the narcissist’s version of events over yours.  The narcissist’s reputation then will remain in tact while yours is in shreds.  As counter productive as it may sound, refuse to defend yourself.  Any self defense will be construed as you being just as awful as the narcissist said you are.  Sadly, you still will lose friends & family, but if they blindly believe a narcissist, you truly are better off without them.  People who truly love you won’t believe the narcissist’s lies.

 

Do not feed the flying monkeys!  If the narcissist can’t reach you because you have blocked their access to you, they will send flying monkeys.  It’s a given.  They are going to come out of the woodwork & tell you how sorry the narcissist is, they didn’t mean to hurt you, they were just trying to help, she had a bad childhood so she didn’t know any better & a plethora of other lame excuses why it’s OK that the narcissist abused you.  They are convinced the narcissist is right & you’re wrong & they don’t want to be bothered with the truth, so don’t waste your breath telling them the truth.  Their loyalty to narcissists knows no bounds.  Ignore the flying monkeys!  If you can, avoid them or sever ties with them.  If you can’t, refuse to discuss the narcissist or anything about the narcissist with them.  Tell them the topic isn’t something you’re willing to discuss with them.  Change the subject.  Repeatedly.  Be rude if you must.  Hang up the phone or walk away.  Repeat as often as necessary.

 

Stand strong in the truth.  You know what happened.  You know what the narcissist is capable of.  Don’t let anyone convince you otherwise.  Write down everything you can think of, so that way if you feel any doubts, you can read over your experiences to remind you of what made you come to this difficult decision.

 

Work on healing.  When there is a narcissist in your life, it’s nearly impossible to heal because they take up so much time, energy & thought.   Once they are no longer in your life, that is gone.  It’s a huge relief!  It also means your mind has more time, energy & thoughts it can devote to your healing from the abuse.  In fact, it may not give you a choice.  I found that some time after being no contact with my narcissistic parents, I started having more intrusive thoughts, flashbacks & nightmares than usual.  Thankfully, it didn’t last forever & they calmed down after a while.  During prayer, God told me it was because I no longer had to function in survival mode.  My brain needed to heal from so much & hadn’t been able to do it for a long time.  It was like it was forcing me to face things so it could feel better.  I figured if these things were happening, I might as well use them to my advantage.  The more you heal from things, the less intrusive thoughts, nightmares & flashbacks you have about them & they eventually can disappear

 

Most of all, pray.  People can be a great support of course, but not everyone understands your suffering.  God, however, does.  He will help you to cope & to heal as well as comfort you when you’re hurting if you let Him.  All you have to do is ask.

 

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Getting To Know Yourself After Narcissistic Abuse

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Holiday Thoughts

For many people, the holiday season is a glorious time of year.  The time to enjoy friends, family & celebrations.  For others like me who have survived demanding, controlling, entitled or even narcissistic parents &/or in-laws however, the mere thought of the holidays brings about a feeling of dread.

 

My first & current mothers in-law both always demanded my husband’s & my presence every Thanksgiving & Christmas, no matter what.  Divorcing my ex & cutting my current in-laws out of my life in 2002 naturally ended their demands for me at least but the damage was done.  The enjoyment I once felt for the holidays was gone.  Years of spending holidays with people who obviously hated me or alone while my husband spent the day with his family destroyed all pleasure I’d once had in holidays.

 

I know that my story isn’t all that unusual.  So many others have been through very similar situations that I thought sharing some thoughts I’ve had on this topic might help you, Dear Reader.

 

When you develop this holiday bitterness, people aren’t always understanding.  Most people seem to want everyone to look forward to holidays with enthusiasm & joy, & if you don’t, they can be shaming.  Many others I know & I have been scolded for not trying to enjoy holidays, told they need to just focus on the joy of the day, everyone loves holidays, etc etc.  What these people fail to realize is this holiday bitterness didn’t happen over night.  We have tried to enjoy the holidays repeatedly, but demanding people ruined it by commanding us to do what they want us to do & treating us badly when we didn’t do it (well, often worse than usual since bad treatment is the norm with narcissists).  It came about when in-laws demand we ignore our own family in favor of them, & treated us badly & acted like something is wrong with us for not wanting to spend a holiday with them.  They also shame us for wanting to spend a holiday with our immediate family- our spouse & kids- rather than with them.  These people think shaming us & ordering us around is OK.  Really, how does that make any sense?

 

I’m not saying holiday bitterness is a good thing.  Frankly, it stinks!  I miss looking forward to the holidays & hate how I dread what was once a time of year I looked forward to.  What I am saying though is that there is no shame if you feel differently about holidays than the average person does.

 

Sometimes, too many bad seeds have been sown to overcome.  Something unpleasant is the only possible harvest when that happens.  Of course it’s a good idea to try to counteract the bad feelings, but if nothing works, it doesn’t mean something is wrong with you or that you’re a bad person.  If you can’t conquer holiday bitterness, it just means that some really bad things have been done that caused you to feel this way.

 

Dear Reader, I’m sorry you feel this nasty holiday bitterness.  I hope you can conquer it by starting your own traditions, avoiding negative people around the holidays, suggesting holiday gatherings with extended family on a different day near the actual holiday while you spend the holiday with your immediate family, etc.  If you can’t however, then at the very least, please don’t beat yourself up over it.  It’s simply a normal reaction to abnormal circumstances, & it happens more often than you might think.

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My Newest Book About Covert Narcissists Is Now Available

Hello, Dear Readers!

 

I just wanted to let you know that my newest book, “In Sheep’s Clothing:  All About Covert Narcissists” has been published in both ebook & print formats.

 

If you want to check them out, you can click on the links in the last paragraph, or go to my website at:  http://www.CynthiaBaileyRug.com

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Narcissistic Parents And Revenge

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About Being Invisible

Growing up with narcissistic parents, you learn early in life to be invisible.  Stay out of everyone’s way.   Don’t bother anyone with your “petty” needs or problems.  After all, your parents are the important ones, not you.  You are there to attend to their needs, not them to yours.  They have drilled these so-called facts into your head from birth, so you know them well.

 

Being invisible is not only a way of life, but a handy survival tool in that type of environment.  The less your narcissistic parents notice you, the less likely they’ll use or abuse you.  Staying quiet & out of their way can make your childhood somewhat easier.

 

While being invisible can serve you well while in such a toxic environment, it is no longer necessary once you are out of it.  In fact, it won’t help you at all & may hurt you instead.

 

If you continue to remain invisible, people may not necessarily abuse you, but they also will not be there for you or love you as you need, because they will not notice you.  Or, if they do notice you, your needs won’t be very important to them because they don’t appear important to you.  Not discussing your needs makes people not even realize you have them.

 

Dear Reader, if this is you, it’s your time to become visible!  Let people know you exist.  It is perfectly OK to have needs & wants, & to let those be known among those close to you.  In fact, it’s healthy to do so.  In normal, healthy relationships, both parties have needs & let each other know what they are with the expectation that when possible, the other person will fulfill them.  God has created people to need one another, after all.  He obviously knows best, so why not try living life His way?

 

 

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The Narcissistic Apology

Narcissists are the most superficial bunch of people you can imagine.  Everything about them is a charade, right down to their apologies.

 

On the rare occasion they do apologize,  there isn’t one sincere thing about it.  Maybe they say the right words, but I can assure you, there is nothing sincere about apologies coming from a narcissist.

 

If you’re wondering how you can be sure whether or not the narcissist in your life truly means their apology, I am going to list some differences below between a sincere apology & a narcissistic apology.

 

  • Sincere apologies always include accepting responsibility for the wrong that was done & don’t shift blame.  Narcissists may say they are sorry for what they did, but then they make an excuse for it.  “I’m sorry I said that, but I wouldn’t have said it if you wouldn’t have done….”  Or, they may even deny doing what they did entirely, making you feel like you’re crazy.
  • If the behavior doesn’t change, the apology isn’t sincere.  People who truly are sorry for hurting another person do their best never to repeat that behavior.  Insincere apologies may sound sincere sometimes, but the fact the offending person’s behavior didn’t change is a big clue that they didn’t mean their apology.
  • Insincere apologies are passive/aggressive.  “I’m sorry you feel that way.”  “I’m sorry you think what I did was wrong.”  While the words “I’m sorry” are being said, it’s clear the person saying such things doesn’t believe they have done something wrong.  The person is angry about being called out on their behavior, & will apologize just to shut you up.
  • Insincere apologies are vague, rather than specific.  Rather than saying, “I’m sorry I cheated on you,” a narcissist may say, “I know I’ve made some mistakes in our marriage.”
  • Sometimes apologies can be used to hurt you.  My mother once told me she realized she made a lot of mistakes while raising me.  I thought maybe she realized what she did to me & wanted to apologize for it.  She sounded so sincere.  Instead, she continued by saying “Obviously I made mistakes.  Just look at how you turned out.”  She guaranteed I would pay attention by sounding sincere & by what she said.  Once she had my full attention, she dropped that cruel bomb on me.
  • Sincere apologies acknowledge the pain that was caused, while insincere ones ignore it.  Using the cheating spouse example again, a sincere apology would be something like, “I’m sorry I cheated on you.  I know doing that has devastated you.  I’m so sorry..it was wrong & it’ll never happen again, I promise.”  Narcissists lack empathy, so your pain that they caused is one of two things- not even a blip on their radar because they didn’t think of you in the slightest, or your pain is something they enjoyed causing you.
  • A narcissist expects you to accept their apology once they say it, then drop the topic forever.  Narcissists don’t want to discuss what happened.  In their minds, saying they’re sorry (no matter how insincerely it’s said) once is good enough.  They said that, so you should be over it & never bring it up again.
  • Narcissists love to make the victim feel that they should forgive & forget.  If you’re a Christian, have been wronged or abused by a narcissist & they apologize to you, chances are very good the narcissist will make you feel like you’re a terrible example of your faith if you don’t forgive & forget what was done to you.  This apology can make you feel as bad or worse than the original offense.
  • Some narcissists apologize for something they think you’re upset about in order to placate you.  My father has done this.  After my mother in-law passed away in 2016, my parents & I had a huge argument.   My father later apologized to me for asking if my husband & I were still together during that argument.  (He kept trying to deflect me off the topic).  Granted, it wasn’t a good thing to ask, but it also wasn’t the reason I was so angry with him.  I told him that & explained exactly why I was angry.  He looked at me like a deer in the headlights.  Clearly, he couldn’t understand why I’d be upset that he & my mother wanted to “pay their respects” to someone who had been so cruel & abusive to me.  Also, it was obvious he thought that all should be fine- he apologized.  Never mind the fact what he apologized for wasn’t the thing he should have apologized for.

 

Dear Reader, please keep these actions in mind when you must deal with a narcissist.  Remembering them will help you not to buy their insincere apology.  You don’t need that aggravation!  If you fall for their apology, they’ll see you as someone they can manipulate & do so more & more.  Who needs that?!  You don’t!  And, you deserve to be treated better than that.

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