Adult children of narcissistic parents Community Group

A space to explore our thoughts, feelings and experiences that have occurred as result of our childhoods with narcissistic parents (one or both). It is hoped that we can use this space as a further tool by which to take control of our lives from those we have inadvertantly relinquished it to, heal the hurt and be happy.

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BOTH parents are narcs and another issue....

so, do any of you have both parents that are narcs? i am reading this book the children of the self keeps referring to "the parent"...i know this is just a "term" but BOTH of my parents are narcs and i feel it makes it worse for me since i never had a normal relationship with either of them......HOWEVER, i used to be best friends with both of them also, so in a huge way, i felt like a had a great relationship with them my whole life although they did very f'd up things to me off and a roller coaster. so, have any of you been best friends with your narc parent (s)? i always say i don't know how i was always best friends with them, but i have discovered over the years, how that has happened....(1), i didn't know any better. my parents have been coming to me about their personal problems since i was 9. problems such as their fights with each other, their sex problems, my mom's affairs, their money problems, everything you can think of, they have projected on me. since i knew no better,(2) i thought them telling me all of their problems was a form of love...that they trusted me, that they relied on me, etc. etc. .....although i never liked it at all..i didn't enjoy hearing about their sex problems...none of their problems! and then when i truly needed them in my life, they were not there to support me emotionally, physically, on no level...i don't know why i thought this would change as i got older and had kids! well, once again, yes, i do know why i would think that things would be good when i had kids....i was best friends with them most of my life except for the times that i felt like they were more like the enemy because of all of the hurtful things they have said and done...but somehow, without them saying sorry or trying to fix things, i just let things be and continued on with the relationship although i had so much hurt left inside and it was never dealt with. i always partied with my parents....they were at 99% of all of my parties in my 20's.... and even in my late teens when i still lived at home, i was allowed to have parties with alcohol and they would be there and me and my friends would be drinking.....i thought that was so cool. and in my 20's, they seemed more like a friend than a parent, so i was able to do and say anything in front of them. i thought this was great! but it never stopped their hurtfulness out of the blue on millions of occassions, but then after they would do whatever to hurt me, i would just invite them to the next party, and then that was basically when i really analyze it, i only felt close to my parents because i was able to drink in front of them and act like a drunk as* in front of them in my 20's.....that doesn't really make a best friend...but i guess in my 20's, maybe that did make a best friend...that's what i did a lot in my 20's..i went to work and then come home and party with my boyfriend and friends. i really want to talk about my sex issues at some point...i will "warn" people in the subject line just in case....i can't get into it right now...i already am feeling emotionally drained after reading more of that book and typing this...but basically, my parents had sex in front of me all of the time..not "on purpose", but they just didn't care when and where or if i was asleep or would be in the same tent (we always went camping my whole life), it would be in the same hotel room, it would be in a camper which the bed was right next to them, it was hundreds of times since i was 9-10. they are so inappropriate and i just can't type anymore. thanks for listening!



This is a lot of stuff you are venting.

It is very rare for 2 narcs to be together. This is only the case with inverted Narc and a regular Narc. The inverted Narc (as described by Sam Vamkin) is one that will be the shameful one. In most cases one parent is the Narc and the other parent is very screwed up person. In my case my mom is the Narc and my dad is sorta the masochistic, selfish, not self aware highly narcissitic person. He has episodes of being normal. A true Narc never has episodes of normal.

A true Narc has a very bad reaction to affection and the word I love you. A true Narc always gives stupid gifts, unless you specifically told them what to buy, they will buy something stupid cuz they just cant think.

For me it was important to identify the exact nature of my parents. With my dad I had to deal with his episodes of sanity that always had me hoping and trying to win him from the evil clutches of mom. He also gave me a lot of his masochistic issues, overworking, feeling guilty about relaxing, which was all escape from the hell we were all in. But this hope was all in vein, cuz he is who he is, with a fricken mountain of issues he doesnt want resolved.

Your parents sound like a different nightmare from mine. Allowing a child run loose like that actually is not love. It caouses deep pain of neglect. It is on the other spectrum of total control, for example my dad beat me when he cought me making out with a guy. Your parents went the total opposite and did not protect you. The healthy way is the middle ground between these extremes.
My parents never told me about any problem. Never ever to extreme. I grew up not know wtf life problems are. I could barely get out of my parents how much they pay for rent. I had no idea what living expenses were. They didnt tell me annnyyything, i mean anything, about life. You on the other hand grew up knowing waaaaay too much. It is also a hurtful neglect.
There is so many way a parent cun hurt a child. Sheesh. its so sad. It must be hard for you to vent this personal stuff. It is for me. I keep getting through it. I hate it. I hate all the bs I lived through.

kath08-thanks for your wrote "Allowing a child run loose like that actually is not love."....actually this is not the was very strange..nothing ever made parents were extremely strict on some levels..i got whipped for nothing...with a paddle and/or my dad's hands...he was beaten as a child, so in his eyes, anything he did to me was nothing compared to what he got as a child....the whippings hurt like hell...he acts like they were nothing...anyways, my dad was extremely strict....couldn't get more than 2 C's on my report card or i'd be grounded for 6 weeks, couldn't be one minute past my curfew of 9PM even though he knew i was across the street at my boyfriend's house....i literally got home at 9:01PM and was grounded for 2 weeks from seeing my b/f, from the phone, and the t.v. just because he wanted to prove a point and that my curfew doesn't go by what my boyfriend's clock says, it's what my dad's clock says and i was one minute late! oh, so many little things like much stupid control! but then on the other hand, he was more laid back about me drinking at home and i was able to go on my first date at age 12 and i rode my bike everywhere in town by never made sense. oh, and my brother is 4 yrs younger than me and his curfew was always later than mine! crazy! i could really deal with all of those things that i just mentioned though if all of the other crap hadn't happened... i would just feel like it was over protective parents. they had me when my mom was 17 and my dad was 19..i always made the excuse in my head for them that they were young so any mistakes they made is because they were young. i was an accident..although they told me my whole life that i was planned because they wanted to get out of their parents' house and that's how they could get out of there if they got pregnant so my dad said, and i quote "so, your mom told me i didn't have to pull out!"..yeah, i really wanted to know that! i had to hear about that on several occassions! but then, when i was planning my mom's 50th bday a few yrs ago, my dad said something out of the blue as we were going through old pics of my parents and there was a prom pic and my dad said something about her being pregnant there and how my mom had been messing around on him when they were broken up but then she hid the pregnancy from him for 5 months! i was floored! something i thought i knew my whole life that, and then it turns out that maybe i'm not even his since she was messing around on my dad!!!!!! there are so many other things like that that i will eventually tell and i realize my whole life was a lie!!!! as for the narc having bad reactions to love, my parents were not this way at all unless they were mad at you and then they would withhold their love and act like they don't care...they do this often......especially currently. but a lot of times they showed affection by playing with us and they always said they loved me and my brother. it was just always a roller coaster. and they always always always bitched to me and my brother about their own parents which made us not close to my grandparents..i guess that's another subject too....oh so much. so many layers, so much to deal with. ugh!

riseabove-I see several issues here. It seems to me that there really wasn't a rhyme or reason your father chose to be strict in one instance and then not in the other. As children, we feel like we understand and feel loved when they care enough to pay attention to where we are at and what we cannot do. My initial thinking when reading this was that your father had something to gain for himself when he was very strict and then when he was very passive. From what I know of your situation over time, I feel like your father is definitely the narc. Bad decisions and circumstances that a parent chooses in life can set up many narc tendencies all to save face for themselves. A criminal does the same thing, unhealthy self-preservation.

What you miss in your parents comes from the naive young child's mind. Those were only good times because you didn't know any better. You do deserve answers about the paternity. That should never have been said to you and now that it is - you do deserve that answer.

Bottom line, please try not to confuse good times with the fact that at one time we were all naive about what we were experiencing from our narc parents. What you probably most likely miss is that your mind was a lot more carefree before awakening to this. You can reach that place again, but it does take time peeling away those layers. Riseabove, you were traumatized. You've got some recovery in front of you. My best to you always.

I realize now that after years of work on my self due to fairly lousy to lousy parents that the real issue is growing up. it means there has to be a replacement for what the parents didn't do. This is something that focusing on the parent(s) will not do. It is self focus and self work that is the answer. We can talk our heads off about parents and how it is confusing, how it hurts, what we need and didn't get but the final draw and answer is learning to do it for yourself since parents didn't teach and example a healthy self connection nor did the parent do the job of helping the child develop into an adult.

What I found interesting is operating through the eyes of the child as an adult and that is what has to be changed up. This means coming to terms with the parents lack of ability for what ever reason and learning as an adult how to take care of the child with in and then self developing from there.

So asides from the emotional abuse there is a developmental issue. That is how I have experienced it.

Things really started to change when I wasn't seeing through the helpless childs eyes who had been looking for the need, the validation that needed to be provided. These are non negotiable needs .

At a certain point it becomes my job to change my internal habits (learned by parents) and learn healthy methods of coping as well as cultivating a voice beyond the child voice.

Alligning with people who recreate the childhood pattern doesn't solve it. The birth of change will be out side of the pattern and people who fit or connect into it. So, it isn't a matter of getting needs met and validated by people who just assume give ya the same sort of short end of the stick deal ... although the child goes to those people with attempts to finally get the needs met. It doesn't happen. It does keep a person locked in to the same frequency and residual cycles of abuse/self neglect etc...

I want to add that part of the reason you and many of us return to the parents although they are unhealthy is because it is almost instinctual to connect with them. Half your battle is to overcome that instinct because it is not there for some of us; sad, but true. You can love your parents, but do not look to them for nurturing and attentiveness, narcs are defected. The good side of it all is that because we are who we are, we look for help in understanding what emotional health is and little by little we become emotionally healthy; thus, making us very capable of standing on our own and standing firm in knowing that the Creator never abandoned us.

Sounds like your parents were both controlling and neglectful like mine. In the original post it sounds like they let you party like a maniac.
I hear you about all the bs. It is all bad.

At the end of the day what saved me is my shrink being my parent and showing me what that is like. I now know what is right and what isnt and that gives me a peace of mind. I dont get so upset at my parents being so wrong anymore. They are just wrong.
I now know what is right and have to keep practicing it. Thats my main focus.

THere is a time when we have to vent all the bs that happened. It is best to vent and cry out the pain. If you just vent without feeling it, it will happen over and over until you feel it. After that you can move on. And best thing is to move on fast ofcourse and get on practicing the right way to live.
When you have a strong anchor in what is right, this stuff will not hurt you so much.

Like Kath - My therapist helped re-parent and teach me to parent myself so that I can now grow up - be adult and take care of the child with in. This way I STOP looking for the dysfunctional/disordered parent to do the job.

As I become more and more centered in self and not focused on other... as in parent life becomes my life not a continuation of what never quite happened.
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