When you are with a devil of a partner, you do not see their dark side at first. The really good predators are skilled at creating a shared psychosis…an illusion that you are two perfectly matched souls….destined to be together
When you are with an authentic partner, who has true compassion for you, they do not feel the need to state things like….
I have compassion for you.
I don’t usually have compassion for other people, but I have compassion for you.
Other people do not really understand you or see you. But only I see the real you.
No one sees your talent but me.
I am the only one who has really loved you.
I am the only one who could really love you.
You are so different from other people that I am the only one who understands you.
You are too special to be with anyone but me.
No one will love you the way I do.
You are the only one who can save me.
I would die without you.
You would die without me.
You and I do not belong in this world.
We are nothing without each other.
You can only do great things if you are with me.
I will kill myself if you leave me.
I will kill myself if you….
I will kill myself if you don’t….
My life was nothing before you.
You don’t need anyone but me.
Your friends are not really your friends. Only I am.
Everyone always lets me down in the end.
Everyone disappoints me sooner or later.
Every relationship I have ends up with them abusing me. You will do the same.
Everyone leaves me. So will you.
No one is willing to give me what I need.
I never get enough help from anyone.
People should help me and do what I ask, without wanting something in return.
If you really loved me you would not expect things in return for doing everyhing I ask you to do.
How can I believe you love me if you are not waiting by the phone when I call?
How can you do things for other people when I am so needy?
How can you do things for yourself (like take a shower) without checking that I am okay first?
I should not have to be there for you to prove my love.
Love is about you being there for me and doing things for me that I can do myself.
Love is being there for me when you have an impotant business meeting to go to.
Love is being there for me, when your friend or family member has an emergency.
Love is about being there for me when you have an emergency.
Love is being there for me when you are sick or sleep deprived.
Love is giving up all your friends and family for me.
Love is you knowing that my job is more important than yours, but that I not help you pay your bills.
Love is YOU paying attention to MEEEEEE and me ignoring, rejecting, demeaning, minimizing and lying about you.
If you have a narcissistic parent, then nothing of your own belongs to you. Not your mind, not your thoughts, not your feelings.
The narcissists feels entitled to control and own all of your things, both physical and mental.
When you have an idea you want to try that is different from theirs, they will put up a fight to make you change to their way of doing things. They have no right to d this. You are an adult with the same rights they have.
They do not ever see you as an adult, or as an individual with your own rights, gifts and talents.
They feel you are something they own and should control when you need controlling.
If you do not comply with their wishes, they will try to undermine you in any way they can.
Narcissistic parents have gone so far as to publicly shame their children, spread lies and gossip about them, and cause them to lose jobs and relationships.
They will take over responsibilities that are yours, and tell you it is for your own good, because you are inadequate.
This wears down your self esteem and effects how others see you. The narcissistic parent does not want you to shine independently from them.
If you do something well, they will claim the credit for it. Even if they did nothing but counter and interfere with something, they will still assume the credit.
If they disapprove of something you do, then they will punish you in the form of shunning. silent treatment, demeaning you, scapegoating you, or causing a mobbing effect from other family members, who they turn against you.
These are hurtful, malicious games, designed to keep them in the spotlight and you in the darkness, and under their shadow.
The narcissist is sure they are right all the time. They will never listen to your idea, your pint of view, or your circumstances. They do not care.
No contact is usually the best way to live.
Then you will have autonomy and be able to flourish and grow in ways you can not imagine while you are under their darkness.
If you cannot go no contact, then do your best to stick to your own ideas and plans.
Do not give in to the pleas of the narcissist or believe them when they call you abusive to them. It is a typical tactic designed to make you feel shame and guilt.
I just finished giving a guitar lesson to my teenage niece. It is nice to spend time with her. I have been giving her lessons for a few months now, about every other week.
Before her father had asked me if I was interested in doing guitar lessons with her, I had not been doing much with guitar at all.
I used to play all the time. Depression has a way of making you lose interest in the things you once used to love to do. After back to back abusive situations with partners and family members, I lost my will to do anything that I liked to do.
Since I have started my life coaching business I have been feeling that life force coming back. Once people suck your will out of you, it takes time to be able to self generate that energy again.
It takes doing something that you are passionate about. Since I have been working with other abuse victim, I have felt a purpose in my life that means something special to me. So this is having the effect of generating some of that will power back again.
I still feel the weight of depression pressing down on me as I try to push it off. I am learning that you cannot push it off at all. It is more a matter of accepting without judgement of yourself.
Then allowing the feelings to come and sitting with them in a way that is nurturing. Showing yourself compassion when the people closest to you cannot show you any compassion is not easy. But you can do it once you learn that the perceptions others have about you do not have to frame your reality.
Anyway, I was thinking of putting new strings on my guitar so that it would sound better. The old strings have a very thumpy, dull sound. I know that I would be pleased to hear the sound of new strings and I would be more likely to play for enjoyment.
I might learn a new song or write one of my own. Baby steps are sometimes the way to make great changes in your perceptions. It is the change in perception that will create change in your behavior.
Perceptions control your emotions. Emotions are underneath of all behaviors. Once you can begin to change behaviors and have more control over getting some momentum, then you can begin to enjoy your path as you are creating it under your feet.
Emotophobia is the fear of unpleasant emotions, not to be confused with emetophobia, the fear of vomiting.
There is little online about emotophobia.
The few articles I found offered the suggestion to “stop treating negative emotions as if they are your enemies and can harm you.”
This is somewhat condescending and implies that emotions themselves cannot harm you.
The person offering this advice clearly has never been in a situation where showing negative emotions could harm them.
So, they think it is rather ridiculous that someone would associate their negative emotions with danger.
The problem with this thinking is that there are situations where someone’s emotions can cause them harm.
This advise shows a complete misunderstanding of emotophobia and its root causes.
People with emotophobia are not “treating” emotions as if they are the enemy.
For people that have emotophobia, emotions were the enemy and they were followed by consequences.
People that grew up in mentally abusive childhoods were not permitted to have emotions like other people are.
The expression of emotion, which represents being an individual, is often punished by abusive parents.
Even children who were not physically abused, could have had their right to individual ideas and feelings violated.
Narcissistic parents and other overbearing, maniplulative parents do not want their children to develop independent thoughts and ideas.
They do not want their children thinking in terms of their own needs at all. When their children expressed feelings, the abusive parents retaliated. If the child thinks independently and can express their feelings then it might threaten the narcissistic parent.
The narcissistic parent wants to create a false narrative about the family. It is the vision of the family that is portrayed to the outside world. Everyone in the family has to back this story up.
Children are not allowed to talk about abuse that occurs in the home. The narcissist re-frames the abuse to the mind of the child. The child is taught to believe the shared psychosis of the family, created by the narcissist.
Punishments are inflicted on a child who goes against the narcissistic parent in any way. These can be emotional or physical in nature.
Everyone in the house is trained to cater to the narcissist. Everyone knows that there are consequences for disobedience. The family members are made into a kind cult that follows the lead of the narcissist.
These mentally abusive parents, want the focus on themselves. The needs and feelings of the others in the family do not matter.
They demand for the child to cater to their ever changing desires and demands. The narcissist will set rules and then change them when they feel like it.
The children are expected to follow the rules, even when the parent has not informed them of changes. It is like playing a game with someone who changed the rules randomly and does not tell you.
In order to survive in this type of environment, the child must learn to constantly read the parent’s body language and tone of voice.
They must anticipate the desires and moods of the parent. If they fail to do so, it is met with negative consequences.
If the child expresses disagreement, or unhappiness with a narcissistic parent, they will likely incur the anger and wrath of the parent.
The smallest indication of disagreement with the parent can bring out their anger.
For their own protection, these children and teenagers learn to disguise their feelings and push them down.
They do not want the parent to see their feelings because it will be used against them.
If you grew up in this type of environment, then feeling negative emotions was the enemy. It is not something we have suddenly developed an irrational fear of as adults.
This environment causes C-PTSD, which is Complex Post Traumatic Stess Disorder, in many people. This is carried over into adulthood.
So, the advice to “stop treating emotions as if they were the enemy” and to tell people that feeling emotions is safe, does not make sense to someone with C-PTSD from childhood mental abuse.
Adults can also develop emotophobia from ongoing abusive relationships with a partner. Women become afraid to disagree with their partner because they fear the consequences of his anger.
Abusive people do not tolerate their partner exercising their personal rights, or expressing opinions that are different from them.
Again, the brain rewires the neural connections to avoid showing negative feelings. This is a necessary survival tactic at the time.
It is not easily undone. The brain considers it necessary in order to protect the safety of the person.
It takes years to develop this survival tactic and to learn how to detach from one’s own emotions. The brain becomes wired to avoid entering into situations that may cause negative emotions.
To undo what was a learned survival skill takes a lot of work in re-wiring the brain.
Telling someone “emotions are your friends” does not work, especially without any idea why the person feels such anxiety about emotions like anger and sadness.
The only people who really understand what it feels like to have severe anxiety about showing anger, and sadness to others are those of us that are carrying the C-PTSD that causes it.
This is not a simple problem to just fix. You have to re-wire your programming. You have to learn that it is okay for someone else to be upset with us when we say “no.”
You need to learn how to identify what you want and what decisions will support you in a healthy way. It is okay if other people do not agree with your choices.
It takes practice to be able to stand your ground about things without fear of the consequences making you comply with others even when it is hurtful to you.
Low self esteem.
Lack of being able to self generate feelings of self worth.
Fear of doing things that make other people upset, angry or disappointed.
Difficulty prioritizing oneself.
Trouble feeling motivated to get ahead in life.
These are some of the symptoms of C-PTSD from growing up with a narcissistic parent. Your subconscious brain is programmed very early about your identity, and your role in the family and your place in the world.
Associations are deep in the subconscious.
If you do not comply with the other person, there will be consequences to pay. If you cause someone to become upset , you will pay dearly.
People from more health families learn to look out for themselves. You learned that in order to protect yourself, you have to look out for others.
People from functional families were taught to be in touch with their own feelings and to love themselves.
If you were the child of a narcissist, you were taught to defend against the wrath f the narcissist by not expressing your own feelings. Eventually you began to have trouble identifying what you want at all.
As an adult this wiring in your brain keeps you from taking care of yourself properly.
You still have that hyper-vigilance that there is a threat of danger when someone near you is not getting their way.
You may have a fear of being abandoned by the people you love, if you consider your own needs to be equal to theirs. The longer you cater to the desires of other people, in a relationship, the more they come to expect that treatment from you.
People around you can become conditioned to expect you to always agree, always go along with them, and never challenge them.
One of the many problems of this “people pleaser” behavior is that it attracts narcissists and predators. Narcissists and psychopaths want easy prey or at least a victim that had obvious emotional wounds that they can use to use against you.
If you have never practiced standing up for yourself, then you have no idea how to do this, and you fear the consequences of doing so. What would happen to your relationships if you said “no” to someone?
What would happen to your world of you began to prioritize your own needs? What consequences would follow if you believed that your needs and ideas were just as valuable as those of the people in your life?
Well, you can see the people in the world who are not afraid to say “no.” You interact with them all the time. They say “no” to you all the time. These people are not all in the same category.
There are people who do what they want all the time. They never let people cross their boundaries. In fact, they cross over into your world and stomp all over your rights and invade your boundaries all the time.
These are the narcissists. You may have a fear of becoming like that. You do not want to become the parent that emotionally abused you. The very person that caused much of your difficulty in getting what you want out of life.
But there is another category of people who stand up for themselves. These are people that have healthy boundaries but still respect the rights of other people. They do not exploit and manipulate others.
They express their feelings and let people know what they want. They go after the things they want out of life and they consider their personal dreams, desires and emotions to be a high priority.
These are not narcissists. They do not use aggressive, emotionally manipulative communication. They do not covertly try to get emotional reactions from you, in order to exploit and control you.
There is a line between assertive and aggressive. You are being assertive when you express what you do and do not want.
You are being aggressive when you make it clear that you do not care what the other person wants. You undermine, lie to, and gaslight people to get your way.
Being assertive and having healthy boundaries does not have to injure other people.
You are not a bad person for looking out for yourself.
You are not a narcissist if you care about your own feelings and needs. You are a normal human being.
I will write about this topic again in the future. Please leave comments below about a specific question or particular problem that you have.
Give me some ideas about problems of having C-PTSD (complex PTSD) that you are dealing with.
I want to hear from adult children of narcissistic parents. Also from anyone that grew up under the heavy cloud of a narcissist in some capacity. It is not always a parent.
Also, if you feel that your ability to move forward and get momentum in life has been affected by narcissistic abuse, either during childhood or as an adult, please leave me any ideas about questions I can address in a future post.
Your life direction is inside of you. Don’t let other people talk you into following the wrong path.
If something does not feel right to you, then it isn’t right for you. Listen to your own feelings and the sensations on your body.
Your inner voice will direct you to follow your purpose.
You need to differentiate between your true voice and the inner tapes that were put into your brain by other people.
Negative thoughts about yourself are bad programming, usually installed during childhood and reinforced by abuse during adulthood.
Your dreams are important.
Your special talents are needed by people in the world. If you feel inspired to follow a certain path, don’t let people tell you that you cannot or should not do it.
Look into your own mind and soul for your purpose and for what really would make you happy.
Anxiety and depression are ways your true self has of letting you know that changes need to be made in your life.
Past trauma needs to be healed and memories need to be integrated. It is important that the inner tapes …that tell you that you are unworthy… do not hold you back.
Find your path. It is never too late.
People that care about you…and care about others in general, do not use bullying tactics to get their agenda met. They do not intentionally overblow, contort, and reframe events.
Caring people do not have a ridiculously overblown reaction to a little thing that you did “wrong” ( against their personal rules) and then tell all of your friends, family or co-workers that you victimized them.
Someone who wants to be your friend does not refuse to hear your side of a disagreement, shift blame for their over reaction onto you and then put malicious words in your mouth that you never said.
Toxic people pretend to be your friend until they feel threatened by you, have no more use for you, or you refuse to agree with everything they say…and do everything they want.
Narcissists see themselves as more entitled than you to everything , whether you deserve it more or not.
Narcissists want you to admire their greatness and submit to being their minion.
If you stop catering to their ever-changing whims, they will gather their other minions to turn against you….and destroy things you care about…..friendships, your reputation, your job, your marriage, your business, your self esteem, or your ability to move forward with your life.
They won’t change, even if they tell you they will. If they turned against you or discarded you once …they will do it again…and harder.
Once you begin to feel your self esteem go down every time you talk with someone, it is time to back away.
Once you begin to notice that every time you have a conversation with them you have to go back over the entire thing in your head to figure out what the hell just happened….it is time to back away….or run if you can..
Relationships should involve two people…..
Two different sets of opinions that are respected
Two different sets of personal boundaries that are respected
Two sets of ideals and thoughts that are respected
Two different schedules that are respected
Two different ways of feeling about situations that are respected
Two different sets of dreams , skills, talents and aspirations that are supported and respected
Two different individual people that are respected
Get the idea?
Narcissists are poisonous.