Just gone NC the hard way...

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emms
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Just gone NC the hard way...

Post by emms » Wed Jan 06, 2016 12:34 pm

Hi,

I have only very recently after reading so much online about narcissism realised that my mother could possibly be on this spectrum somewhere, as most of what I have read is like reading about her and how she treated me as a child and continues to.

I only found out 2 years ago that (and im not sure if its true which makes me feel confused and guilty) she emotionally abused me as a child and that it was ongoing, when I had assessments for psychotherapy after my boyfriend had died (five years ago). I never had any therapy as I found the assessments too difficult, but have been in and out of hospital since he died with depression, complicated grief disorder, and ptsd.

I have self harmed and attempted to do more several times since then, and lost my job through spending so long in hospital. Everything seemed to worsen when I had contact with parents, and although they live 500 miles from me, the contact was very frequent. And when I didnt respond to their phone calls or emails, they would get very angry with me. They (my mother) have always been in total control of me, and its difficult to explain everything about childhood as until two years ago I thought it was all completely normal, and that I was always in trouble because I did things wrong, wasnt good enough, was useless etc, and it was my own fault that I was treated and shouted at in that way.

Now as an adult (35) I still feel like a child when im with them, and am constantly told to shut up. They take control of my house when they visit, cleaning everything after having a rage at how awful I am living when they arrive, then blaming me at the end of their stay for making them work. And now saying that I have no right to treat them like this after everything they have done for me.

I feel terrible. Mental health professionals were telling me I needed to end contact with them at least for a while, but I am absolutely terrified of my mother. I tried ignoring emails, calls etc, but that made it all worse to the point that I had a panic attack every time the phone rang and was afraid of opening emails, and have even left my house several times as they have threatened to come up here to sort me out if I dont speak to them. People said if I ignored them long enough they would stop, but they didnt, they just got worse and worse, demanding answers.

I stupidly suggested that I thought she may be ill, and that it wasnt her fault, and sent some information for them to read, but then got attacked by my dad and brother for saying / thinking such awful things about my mother, who is already ill with arthritis, and that im making her illness worse. Obviously I now have read that telling someone you think they are narcissistic is not going to work / be accepted. And they are right - I have no grounds to make a diagnosis of my mother. No medical training (other than an M.Sc in Medical Molecular Microbiology.....bit different), and therefore I cannot state that she has any illness. But its so frustrating as everything I read about it, sounds like my mother who has terrified me my whole life. I also get the bit about the golden child, who seemingly is my brother, through no fault of his own. I know she would never be diagnosed because if she has it she is unlikley to seek help, as she wont believe it in the first place....

Anyway, after me being unsuccessful in ignoring their contact, my friends wrote a letter to my parents warning them to cease all contact with me, and it was quite long and harsh....but true. And I have not heard from them since (yesterday). But am feeling terribly guilty about it all, and the fact I have caused so much pain and hurt and distress to my family. I really dont know if ive done the right thing. I have moved house recently, so dont know the mental health team well here, and they dont have information about my family from my previous psychiatrist yet. I have not met the psychiatrist here either yet. Although it has gone very quiet without the phone ringing constantly, I feel like I have done something absolutely terrible, and still have to keep punishing myself for it, and still think that deep down this is all my fault.

Thanks for reading.

emms
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Re: Just gone NC the hard way...

Post by emms » Sun Jan 10, 2016 3:13 pm

Does anyone have any advice at all?

Beth McHugh
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Re: Just gone NC the hard way...

Post by Beth McHugh » Sun Jan 10, 2016 4:14 pm

Hi Emms,
I'm sorry you've had this experience with your birth family and it has led to so much hardship for you. The fact that your partner has died at (presumably) such a young age and your parents have not responded appropriately signifies that there is something terribly wrong with the dynamics in your family.
The incidents of childhood sexual abuse are not specific to narcissism, so although your mother may have NPD, other factors need to be assessed. Ignoring a narcissist won't make them go away - if anything it can increase contact as control has been lost by the narcissist and that can't happen in their world.

Also going no contact has to be done for the right reasons and after a period of planning. Spontaneously going no contact can actually make things more difficult for you because there can be residual guilt which can then cause additional problems. Emm, your parents' treatment of you has left you with significant scars, but you can get through this situation. Learning boundaries are important, but getting a diagnosis by proxy will help enormously as your mother may have NPD, but she may have another disorder or a co-morbidity. Knowing which disorder she may have will ensure that any interaction you have in future with her will be tailored towards that disorder. Getting it wrong or guessing can make it worse. Start by reading up on articles on the main webpage by clicking on the link above, but bear in mind there is a possibility that your mother may not be a classic narcissist. in therapy, it is also important to look at the role of the father, as there is a tendency to look only at the supposed narcissist as the source of all problems, but the other parent plays their role in maintaining the family status quo.

I know you have been in therapy before, however if you would like to try a session with me please contact, as I would start by determining exactly what you have been dealing with, and teaching you skills to arm yourself against the way you are disrespected by your parents, rebuild your self esteem and learn boundary training so that further damage cannot occur. Then the anger and grief will be able to come out and be dealt with appropriately because there will be no more incoming barbs from your parents that hit home, as you will have techniques to deflect and protect.

Know that you are not alone and do contact if you would like individualized help in dealing with this situation.

Best wishes,

Beth
ImageBeth McHugh
B.Sc (Hons). B.Psych. Dip.Sc.
Principal, Your Online Counselor

emms
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Re: Just gone NC the hard way...

Post by emms » Tue Jan 19, 2016 12:10 am

I just feel really stupid. Even more stupid than before. Sorry I didnt explain myself very well - I have never been in therapy, I only had assessments for it, and there was no sexual abuse. Just what they called emotional abuse.

Beth McHugh
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Re: Just gone NC the hard way...

Post by Beth McHugh » Wed Jan 20, 2016 7:52 am

Hi Emms,
No need to feel stupid at all -- you're not stupid, you have had been subjected to emotional abuse, which is easier to dismiss and minimize but is actually just as harmful if not worse than many forms of physical abuse, the latter of which is at least visible.
It would really help if you sought therapy -- either by contacting me or a therapist you already know of. You are carrying beliefs that have been implanted by others and they are causing you pain. It doesn't have to be this way. Have a think about it and give it a try -- being the child of a narcissist is one of the most difficult situations in life to deal with because it takes a person to reach adulthood to firstly even realize that something is wrong, which means that seeds have been sown during childhood that that the adult child still believes about themselves and the world. The narcissist sows these seeds in order to control and manipulate, however these seeds can be systematically rooted out once they are exposed for the lies they are.
Best wishes,

Beth
ImageBeth McHugh
B.Sc (Hons). B.Psych. Dip.Sc.
Principal, Your Online Counselor

julia-youronlinec
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Re: Just gone NC the hard way...

Post by julia-youronlinec » Thu Jul 07, 2016 10:26 am

I had a story starting somewhat similar (I had a bad breakup with a bf and lost a child when I was in college). My Mom used all her charm to get me under her supervision and back to her house. I ended up becoming a total mess and a prescription drug addict with her very help. She was my enabler. It wasn't only stress and everything swinging back and forth, but she wrote some of the prescriptions (she's an MD) and got more pills for me somewhere else. Illegally! Nothing wrong, she was just helping me with all her heart. In hindsight, I could've died. I didn't tell those details to my doctor, but he advised me too that I needed separation from my mother. But I still had doubts and lost years of my life! With my aunt's support I first came clean, then moved overseas, which tremendously helped to set boundaries (pun intended).

The most important thing for you is to live your life and be happy. You think that you were emotionally abused as a child, but it's not over. Think that those people can cause you more damage if there are no boundaries. You're lucky to have caring friends.

Steelerfan
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The Libertion of No Contact

Post by Steelerfan » Wed Aug 03, 2016 8:29 am

I went NC with my narc birth mother, but not in a fit of anger or rage. The last time she insulted me (and she has been in the habit of doing this for years!!) I looked at her and, for the first time, I was able to see that insulting me was a habit. Her brain neurology is wired so that when she sees me, her insults are levied with little conscious thought--a matter of habit. When I observed this, I was deeply hurt and got into counseling. It was months later that I decided to go no contact and my reason is very simple--by now my self esteem and self worth have been so damaged I couldn't begin to repair the damage--to heal--while remaining on the receiving end of her constant insults. I still acknowledge her with cards at the appropriate time, but I never position myself to be insulted by her. She cannot reach me, except by mail. I was devoted to narc mom for ten

15 years (all the while being insulted, including in front of other people) while my sister (who is devoid of empathy and has oft repeated that she had her children so there would be someone to love her--probably somewhere on the narc spectrum) rendered no care for our birth mother. By going no contact, my sister was forced to step up. Now I feel absolutely no guilt because I put in my time and my sister can finally do her part. For me, no contact has opened a healing space. My only regret is that I did not do it so much earlier NC but as a recovering codependent I am grateful for the healing space that NC has opened for me.

Beth McHugh
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Re: Just gone NC the hard way...

Post by Beth McHugh » Wed Aug 03, 2016 9:58 am

Hi Steelerfan,
Thanks for sharing your story. It's such a wonderful example of how, with a bit of help from a counselor who can present an outside view of the narcissistic world into which you were born into, can help you see the light. Congratulations, you have gone no contact to a point in which you feel happy and have finally learned those protective boundaries that your parents would have taught you had they been able. Narcissists are the ultimate boundary non-respecters and you have learned how to keep your mother and your self at a safe emotional distance. You are probably correct about your sister, but it's your time in the sun now. Enjoy it! And congratulations, All the effort was worth it.

Best wishes,

Beth
ImageBeth McHugh
B.Sc (Hons). B.Psych. Dip.Sc.
Principal, Your Online Counselor

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