Angry at a Narcissistic Mother: Part One

by Michelle Piper

Your narcissistic mother makes you angry and sucks you dry. You’ve spent your whole life compensating for the bad she caused and chasing the good she didn’t give you. Now, you’re an adult and have much more freedom than when she dominated your life.

But, what if you’re still angry?

Anger can serve as a great fuel to move away from what you don’t need and to protect yourself. Yet, it can also be exhausting and drain you from enjoying the precious moments you have left outside your narcissistic mother’s drama and manipulation.

Nobody writes to me asking how to get rid of the good parts of anger. We all know when we feel the triumphant energy of “this is my truth and I’m going to defend it.”

But, I do get many comments posted on the blog and emails pleading for a way to get rid of the negative side of anger, the part of anger that drains us, makes us tired, and leaves us feeling defeated and empty.

Symptoms of negative anger:

1) You find yourself snapping at people and things that don’t warrant the intensity of your response.
2) You feel worn out and a little hopeless.
3) You have displaced anger, meaning you’re irritable when there’s nothing in the moment at which to be angry.

It is maddening to carry these effects, after surviving a narcissistic family system. You know you have more control than ever in the past and yet the effects of the narcissistic abuse you suffered still visit you when your anger turns destructive.

In response to reader requests, the next post will provide some ways to lessen the toll of negative anger.

{ 81 comments… read them below or add one }

zanne June 5, 2014 at 1:34 pm

As a child I always thought Happy Birthday had some extra words, as follows:Why was she born so beautiful, why was she born at all,she no bloody good to anyone, why was she born at all,she’s no bloody good to anyone,she’s no bloody good at all. That was my mothers extra verse sung each year until I was eleven years old. Boy did I feel special.I am 50 years old and she still attacks me and those I love. I thought she was walking towards me today in the town I work. I felt physically sick. I have overcome much and have a wonderful happy relationship with my own daughters, from somewhere we can find the strength to do things differently if we care enough to try. Many thanks Zanne


Sherry June 29, 2014 at 12:30 pm

This made me I’ll, just because it happened to me too. So sorry for the pain you’ve had you didn’t deserve it. Blessings


June August 13, 2014 at 9:07 am

o lord zanne.. awful simply awful of her. all the best to you and the strength you have had to enjoy beautiful relationships with your children. peace.


Frustrated May 1, 2016 at 3:42 pm

What a horrible mother. I hope you are no contact with her or at least very limited contact. If you have children of your own I hope you keep them away from her. She does not deserve to see them.


Kathy January 1, 2018 at 6:43 am

Wow, so sorry for that Zanne. God speed in your healing. 🙂


Sarah October 13, 2014 at 5:20 am

OMG! Mine sang the same song, although not on my birthday necessarily. I am blessed with a good sense of humour so I took it as a joke, just some random song. Another of her favourites was “anything you can do, I can do better”. And then when my skinny friend was around a little jovial rhyme about “fatty and skinny went out one day…”. My friend used to like that one.


Carolyn January 19, 2015 at 3:24 pm

My mother sang about herself. “M” is for the million things she gave me! “O” is only that she’s growing old. “T” is for the tears she shed to save me, “H” is for her HEART OF PUREST GOLD! (yelled), “E” is for her eyes of love light shining. “R” IS RIGHT AND RIGHT SHE’LL ALWAYS BE! (that was yelled extra loud) Put them all together they spell MOTHER- the word that means the WORLD to me!!!!!!!!!!!!! That’s what you should be singing, she said.


Violet February 25, 2015 at 2:11 am

Carolyn, I burst out laughing at this song because it is SO something my mother would come up with. Instead, she had a quote framed and always kept in on her vanity in plain site: “Mother is the name for God in the lips and hearts of children.” Not narcissistic or anything!


Frustrated May 1, 2016 at 3:43 pm

Unbelievable. What a repulsive mother.


Christina February 1, 2015 at 11:45 am

Wow, that post was so painful to read. I’m so sorry about that and that you experience that. I know the exact feeling when you thought you saw your mother coming towards you. When my mother calls, I look at the phone and just about die, it’s like someone punches me swift in the gut. She never comes to my home any more (lives an hour away) but when she does I have to keep an eye on her. She’ll go around my home and say, “Chris, I need this …” and she’ll take my things and put them in her purse. I always have to take an inventory after she leaves. She’s turned her phone back on under my name (she ruined her own credit). I didn’t know this for years until caller ID came out and when I installed it you can imagine my horror to look and see me calling myself – when it was her phone number. I’m 47 now, I’m just now learning how to take care of my own basic needs. Eating at a proper time, getting enough sleep, enjoying myself. When I had my oldest son, she came to the house to “help me”. Of course she slept in till 11am and laid around. She did try to give me some help but telling me I shouldn’t nurse, that would tie me down. And it’s “gross” anyway. She took a bottle and showed me how to open the nipple up a little bit and put rice cereal with juice in the bottle, instead of formula, this would make him sleep longer – oh, and prop the bottle on a pillow so you don’t have to hold him all the time… No wonder I have moments of feeling totally alone. I have had reoccurring nightmares for years about being in a house that was rotting and falling in and I had a demon chasing me — wonder why that is…


dana December 23, 2015 at 8:24 am

reading your reply sounds just like me….I am 47 and my mom did all of those things even down to the breastfeeding saying that it was disgusting and why was I doing it, she didn’t do it with me. I feel alone and every time something everyday normal happens to me I don’t know how to cope. I get sick when I have to spend time with her because I know the drama that comes with it. When she comes over she wants all of my stuff and if I tell her no she can’t have it she makes me feel like I am selfish.


Elizabeth December 29, 2015 at 1:52 pm

I can’t even believe how similar the experiences. Same. Same. and Same. When my mother calls I feel physically sick. Same about the breastfeeding, and the walking around my house snooping into everything. She asked for a gold ring that she said she wanted to give my sister… I gave it to her, and she kept it. The biggest thing is that I feel that no one wants to see the truth… family know but I don’t really get support.. it’s like I’m the one with the problem. The life time of digs and put-downs, subtle and otherwise, are very isolating – even my husband who sees it the best tries to get me to ‘call her on Christmas’ etc. You know, I just don’t want to anymore. I’m done.


Lydia August 6, 2016 at 8:48 am

That is the hardest, when your other loved ones (spouse, friends) try to get you to have a better relationship with your mother, as if they are thinking, “yes, mothers can be difficult but if you would try just one more time…” And you are thinking, “Really?? I love my spouse/friend to pieces, but they still don’t get this!?”
It’s the insidiousness of it all. You finally see NM for who she is (when you realize for example that OTHER mothers don’t say or do the things yours does), but alas, your loved ones do not.

It’s hard for anyone who has a non-NM to understand. Their only point of reference is having a solid, caring, loving mum, so how could mothers be anything but?

I had a girlfriend after college who had lost her Mom to cancer when she was younger. This friend especially could not believe what I was sharing (and I did not share until the relationship until we were friends a long time). But her take was always, “I can’t BELIEVE you are not making more of an effort to see/call/care for your Mom. I would give anything to have mine back.”

By the way it sounded, I would have given anything for Ann to have her mom back too. But while I was struggling with how to cope with my Mom, my friendship with Ann kind of evaporated…Another casualty of this complex ACONM life.


Fraoch July 16, 2017 at 11:11 pm

Sounds too familiar – all well meaning… big difference… they have loving supportive moms. I havent spoken to my mom in years – due to self preservation kicking in….. 1 example of my mom, I was unlucky to be raped – my mom made the whole thing about her and told all her friends, told me not to tell anyone, made a scene on a few occasions during the court case, one such prevented me hearing the verdict!!!

Definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different response!. Walking away was the best thing I have ever done, no regrets… saddest part… i dont miss her at all….. the mother that never was! Anger gets me now and again due to her lack of empathy and still being alive and not caring!! I am sure time will help…


broken November 10, 2016 at 10:26 pm

My mother is a thief as well. She has stolen our identities, ran up credit card bills, and stolen money and stolen things from my house. I am no contact, but before that I would not leave her unsupervised in my home.

She also snooped. I remember catching her going through my paperwork a few years ago. Such vile women, I can’t even fathom stealing from my child.


XO March 19, 2015 at 6:49 pm

I am 29 years old and I’m trying very hard to let go of my anger towards my mother. She’s still the same person she was when I was a child. Whenever I’m around her she says or does something that totally pushes me and my feelings to the side. It just will not stop. I’m treated like I’m not even really there and it hurts. Most of the time I’ll walk away knowing shes just a sick person, but sometimes I lose it and I will scream at her, asking her why she has to do this to me. She will pretty much look at me like I am a joke and tells me to grow up. I always feel horrible afterwards. She makes me feel so worthless no matter how hard I try to have a good visit with her. I keep trying to love her simply because she is my mother but it’s like she doesn’t even really want me to love her. She acts like she just wants me to go away. It makes me feel 12 years old again. She makes me feel like almost the total opposite of who I really am. I feel like I need to just shut up when I’m around her, no feelings, no laughter, no smiling, no expression. That’s the only way to win with her. I have to revert back into a scared to death child who doesn’t move or make a peep to get through being near her. What do I need to do to let go of this feeling? Do I need to ignore her better and just take the pain when I’m around her or just totally cut her out of my life? I’m tired of being angry, it’s not who I really am inside. I’m actually very sweet and caring when I’m away from her. I do not want to be like her and just give up on loving her. She makes me feel so weird and confused


Anonymous April 17, 2015 at 1:56 pm

I read your post and feel so bad you have to go through this with your mother. I have had no contact with my mother for a year now. Life is getting better for me. My other relationships are improving. I never realized how being around her affected my other relationships with people. She is still trying to pit my other siblings against me. I have 5 brothers and a sister. She tells everyone how horrible I am. I can’t live with her in my life. I am 60 years old and she has crushed my self esteem. I will pray for you , and take care of yourself.


XO May 5, 2015 at 9:17 pm

Thank you for taking the time to read my story and reply. I understand what you wrote about your mother trying to make your siblings see you as a horrible person because mine does the same! She says I have brainwashed 4 other family members into agreeing with me that she is narcisstic/absusive. It is a joke that she needs to tell herself that just to avoid admitting her own truth. It’s a sad fact that no or very low contact truly is the only peace for us as children of these people. I hope you find your self esteem and to everyone out there I hope you do too. You aren’t alone in this.


Cat August 12, 2015 at 3:31 pm

XO, I wish I had seen your posts when you first wrote them. I had a narcissistic mother and husband. I, too, thought I had to love my mother simply because she was my mother. And I found out that’s not true. DNA doesn’t mean we have to love these people. Did they love us?
I understand your description of how you feel around your mother. The BEST thing I ever did was go no contact. My mother did horrible things. Getting away, and staying away from her was a freedom I had never felt before.
For me, I couldn’t begin to heal until she was no longer in my life.
We accept treatment from family members that we wouldn’t accept from anyone else when it’s family who should be there to give us the extra love and support we all need at times. I never got that. Ever. And I learned I was never going to. Letting go was the best thing I ever did.
That person you really are? THAT is the person you have the right to be every day.


Jessica November 22, 2015 at 6:00 pm

Coming very very VERY late to this, but as the 54-year-old daughter of a narcissistic mother, I have to say that everything you (and everyone else) has said rings true. With HUGE sorrow — because like many narcissists, she could be the most fun company, and very occasionally even give the impression of CARING — I cut all ties with my mother 3 years ago. The sorrow still lingers. So does the trained guilt, because that’s what narcissists major in. But still, cutting off from my mother was the healthiest thing I ever did.

But what I really wanted to say was, reading the comments on here.. And indeed everything else I’ve read about the legacy of narcisstic and other abusive parents, makes me spitting MAD at the myth that Family is Everything..

My friends have kept me sane. My friends have cared and been there for me when I was a sobbing mess in the small hours of the morning. My friends have had the sensitivity to know when I needed a distraction, a joke, a trip out, a cup of tea, a new novel with a silly message in the front..My friends have checked in with me when times were bad, subtly and unobtrusively.. My friends have reflected back to me the person I’ve always suspected I could be; and she is a person I could like.

My family? Not so much. Not at all, in fact.

Yet pop culture tells us that It’s All About FAMILY.

No. I am here now, finally learning to function normally and not be petrified of my own shadow, because of my friends… And in spite of my family.

Lindie April 9, 2018 at 5:40 pm

Yes my mother does the same, the constantly pitting me and my 5 siblings, cousins, even Aunts against me and against each other so she can maintain control of everyone and be the Queen Bee to be fussed over, as the center of the universe. She uses her money trust left to her by my enabling dad to control my siblings who are her flying monkeys. I can tell you that no amount of inheritance is worth putting up with her insanity. Nothing is worth the terrible evil of having to deal with a NM. Absolutely nothing, the damage to my siblings and their families is painful to see. My kids want nothing to do with her, I have carefully kept her away from them 99 percent of their lives they see that she is insane the few times they have had to deal with her. My dad was terrified of her especially the last few years of his life. The narcissist mother actually gets worse with age. Save yourself, go no contact, you are worth saving.
I am no contact with her now and its wonderful. I highly recommend it.


T Smith December 26, 2018 at 8:24 am

Wow, @ 47 I thought I was the only one! (well not really) but I could never put my finger on just what it was with my mother. Unfortunately when my parents divorced, whatever she did to my father, she turned on me. All these years I knew I hated the treatment, I hated that I couldn’t relate to my friends when they would speak so highly of their mother and wouldn’t even come close to the abusive behavior mine had done for so many years. She never supported me my family. She made me her psychologist all my life. After many years, about the time I left my 20 year marriage, my father died, my best best friend died, and my favorite grandmother, I lost my job all in the same year, my mother came at me full force. There were only maybe a few years prior to the devastation that we seemed to put the past in the past until she had a heart attack and my brother got married to a Narcissist who is passive aggressive. From this point moving forward my mother and sister in law have been sticking it to me in spades, I’ve cried many nights, days, as my support system has died. I’m afraid to move to somewhere I don’t know anyone and I’m stuck in this whirlwind that keeps me firmly planted stuck in this place. I wish I had the courage as I did when I was 15 and moved away to save myself from the pits of hell. Now at 47 you would think I would just put one foot in front of the other instead of being a sitting duck. I’ve gone no contact, but the message gets through to me from them through other people whether friend or relative.


Marvin January 20, 2016 at 4:28 am

I posted something at the bottom, I read your story and sounds like the EXACT same situation in our household. I am 35, and have been the “independent” child, the “black sheep”, trouble maker. Even my sister who is 6 years younger talks “down to me,” in front of my children. It drives me up a wall. Even when she is out of line in what she says, and I stand up for myself, I am still the one getting yelled at. Not a word is said to my sister, I am thinking that our family is a NM with a father that enables her actions. I do believe they both are sick, and my sister is just like her. Does this sound like anything, or am I crazy? I always have a feeling in my gut that “something is wrong.” I try to figure out what is wrong with myself, and I always have the same question for about 25-30 years now, “WHY?” Does this sound familiar.


jo October 6, 2016 at 3:24 pm

Hey Marvin you are not crazy what you have described is a true thing. My Mum and Dad both high functioning Alcoholics. NM was enabled by my father as he had been a philander for many years so she held him down. When ever he would try to stand up for me (one time she stole my diary and started reading it out I was 13years old, he told her to give it back to me it was none of her business to read it. She glared at him and said this is my daughter and I can do what I want). He went silent and shrugged his shoulders and walked away. My sister learnt to be the funny one so when ever it got bad she just made jokes she could get away with murder, but if I said the truth look out. Finally at the age of 50 I got the courage up to leave the family as they gave me a choice my soon to be husband or them. I chose the husband best thing I ever did. Now I am not saying it was easy, I still wanted to believe the fantasy that my parents loved me I even tried to send the cards to thank them for bringing me up and the time they put into looking after me. These were to end up in the bin. In the end I lost my family I lost a lot of money as my mum was on my house contract as a part owner so no man could rip me off. So when it sold she got half of the profit. That hurt. In the end the best thing I got was my FREEDOM. The weird thing was I started to meet lots of other people and found out how toxic my family life had really been. Neally 5 years down the track my father has passed they didn’t let me know which really hurt I had to find out via google. I will never go back I have forgiven them in my heart and my head because if I don’t I don’t really move on. I thank god ever day for having the courage to walk away and I know give myself the love and care that was not provided when i was a child and much later into my adult life. I am my own cheer squad and I thank my Husband and friends for getting me through. I have only pity for my mother and gratitude for the strength I now have within me. I hope this helps you.


"Her Right-hand" @ 63 November 21, 2017 at 3:16 am

Oh my Dear Sweet XO,
I had to double check to make sure that YOUR post wasn’t from me. So I looked for your age. Noticed you are not 63. My 85 year-old mother has treated me so very much as you describe yours treating you. I am just now trying to move on. I hope you can also. You my Sweet Child are a lovely person and deserve better. After much counselling, I am trying to do so. I would like you to know how difficult it is AT age 63!!!! Oh my Dear God. Help us DONMs. I feel as though I know you. You certainly stated the pain eloquently for me. I find the hardest part of recovery is trying to frame the “positive I statements” after so many years of abuse. It’s NOT YOU! It IS her! My counsellor told me the pain and confusion I feel “is justifiable anger”! I would suggest that you are deep in the process of the 5 stages of grief. Get help if you need to. Good luck, my Dear. You are a very valuable person.
God bless,
Her Right-hand


Sheryl April 25, 2015 at 9:10 pm

I did not recognize I had a narcissistic mother until I grew up and married a narcissistic man who carried on her campaign and extended it to our four children. I divorced after 29 years of walking on eggshells hoping for change.


Cat August 12, 2015 at 3:23 pm

Sheryl, I know you wrote this a few months ago, but your story resonates with me. When I could no longer stand being married to a man who was a serial cheater, I wasn’t the one she turned to hug and comfort.
Nope, instead she glued herself to my soon to be ex narc husband AND his current girl friend.
They were invited to MY family functions. Yep, the ex and his girl friend. And in the process, my kids were manipulated into thinking it was all me. They were kids. I never shared their father’s cheating with them. But I was the one who knew what he really was. I knew he had nor morals or integrity. To this man, who’s image means everything, I was a threat. And the smear campaign was on. His best ally? My own mother.

This happened 20 years ago. The smear campaign has continued, my children think the sun rises and sets on their father, my NM is now elderly and even worse and I’m alone.

I still have anger at times. But it’s not the force in my life it used to be. What I learned is this: I neither have to forgive or forget. It’s a choice. While I forgave years ago, for my own sake, I cannot STAND the person my mother or my ex is. I would choose neither to be in my life today.
I learned that getting rid of the anger doesn’t mean we have to like these people again. For a long time, I thought the two went hand in hand. They don’t.


Anonymous September 10, 2015 at 1:41 pm

Same happened to me! Now through this site I have learned I am not alone and this senario is acually common for narc mothers and narc exs to join forces for the smear campain. I still feel abused about it but at least I can put the ownership of the “fuckery” where it belongs, shake my head, laugh and move on with my day/life and make it great! And I now no longer feel guilt or confusion over ‘no contact’.
Greatest thing to happen is the realizarion that I date narc men due to my upbringing…I will NO longer be sabotoging myself now! Freedom at last!


Lydia August 6, 2016 at 9:12 am

Cat and Sheryl:
Thanks for cluing me in to something I’ve suspected but had no proof of. My NM conditioned me so well to take care of her needs and my sibs (I am the oldest of six) that I walked right out the door at 19 and into a more worse situation in a marriage to a Narc. That marriage ended in 2011. There are a few financials still tying us together from the divorce, soon to be finished up. (It has taken time to recover from being absolutely decimated.) What drove me to this site was the realization that my NM and my ex are cut from the same cloth… ie, when your daughter goes through a horrible divorce w/ a Narc (who is horrible to his children/her grandchildren during the process) and your NM condescendingly agrees you need to get divorced (along with many others), yet she remains friends with him on social media — what the heck is up with that?


jo October 6, 2016 at 3:40 pm

Lydia, I so hear you. My ex partner who my NM loved, and I mean loved she would dress up in slinky tops whenever he would come over. She would sit there for hours listening to his stories and laughing and joking with him. It was sickening to watch a women in her 70’s flirting with my 52 year old ex. He loved it. I was with my soon to be husband. My parents thought nothing wrong with inviting my ex over to their place as they liked his company. My ex would send me a single stem red rose on Valentines day when he knew I was in a relationship with another man. He thought it was funny and so did my mum. One Christmas my mum tried to send me home with out my ex partner as she wanted him to stay and talk with her, it was about 11.00pm at night and I was tired. I looked at her and said he is mine and he is coming home with me. (who has to say that to their own mother!!!) Its like they do everything that a considerate, kind thoughtful mother would never do. There is no guilt or consciousness on their part it is all about how much they can upset you. I have realised that no matter what I cannot change her I can only remove her from my life and move on. I know relish the healthier relationships I am beginning to develop. Its a slow process but it is worth it. I feel like at the age of 50 I finally grew up and started to take responsibility for my own happiness and joy and it is only going to get better the older I get. best wishes to you.


Lindie April 9, 2018 at 6:40 pm

Conditioned to take care of my NM needs and those of my siblings fits my life to a Tee. I didn’t realize that until you said it, thank you for that, I just fit another piece into my life puzzle. A very important one. I would add also that I was conditioned to be responsible for my NM success and happiness as well as my siblings success and happiness, explains a lot of why I feel so responsible for them all, even now, though I am currently and now permanently no contact


Sheryl April 25, 2015 at 9:15 pm

My father passed away three years later leaving me to look after the finances of my mother. I am exhausted now by the regular attacks, criticism, of my life as I try to move forward following decades of emotional abuse at the hands of the two most central people in my life. I had no clue what I had been dealing with until I sought the help of counseling as I felt as though I was having panic attacks.


Sheryl April 25, 2015 at 9:23 pm

My mothers venomous attacks have increased to the point they are affecting my well being. It takes almost 48 hours to recover as I feel like I’ve been hit by a Mack truck. I would never ever say the kinds of things she does to any of my children. I was raised Catholic by my father and was closer to him. I have felt obligated to look after her out of love for my dad. My problem is I escaped the abuse in my marriage only to be at her mercy again. I have spent five decades like this. I don’t want to spend the rest of my life on the receiving end of this irrational, miserable human being. How do I separate myself without the guilt? It would take forever to explain all she has done and all I’ve suffered.


Monica July 7, 2015 at 5:19 pm

I let my children hang around my NM. Bad, horrible idea! We don’t let strangers talk trash to our kids; why would we let family members?


Lindie April 9, 2018 at 6:45 pm

I had this happen over time also, it will get worse, I started to take multiple days to get over the attacks and it affected my health. You need to get into therapy and go no contact. You are damaging your health by remaining with your NM. Even if you have to apply for local, or state financial help, do it, before you do irreparable harm to your body and brain


Melissa April 30, 2015 at 2:19 am

SO much has began to click reading through this page and the personal stories shared here, I am 27 yrs old and only as of recently realized that I have a NM.

My entire life I have thought that something was wrong with me, that everyone else deserved more than me, were somehow more worthy and that I would never be good enough.

The feeling of constantly walking on eggshells, automatically expecting explosive reactions from other people and feeling that anything that goes wrong is somehow my fault ( I noticed this in the office one day, there was a problem in another department and my brain automatically jumped to the conclusion that somehow I was the one to blame for the problem). These have been a few of the red flags that started me off in my research into understanding WHY.

I am beginning to understand that I have a lot of pent up anger. Infact, to my surprise, my Piper abuse score is highest in Anger Awareness. As a child it was unthinkable for me or my sisters to go against what my mother said without suffering severe consequences, but as I got older I began to stand up for myself ( or at least try).

A few years ago, I came home from college to find that my NM had thrown away a good deal of my things without my consent. Her defense was that if the things she had thrown away had meant so much to me, I should have taken them with me to college (bc obviously a dorm room is large enough to hold 20 years worth of posessions). This created a huge fight , I was screaming and crying while my NM laughed and mimicted my frustrated behavior asking with sarcasm ” why are you so upset?” and telling me that I was having such an ugly reaction because I didn’t want to admit that she was right, and that I ” think I know everything”.

I have been living abroad for the last 5 years ( 4000miles away), and have maintained a low level of contact with my parents, yet I will often dream that I am screaming at and physcially fighting with my mother. These dreams with occur seemingly out of the blue, when I haven’t even been in contact with my mother for some time.

I was wondering if anyone else has experienced anything similar?

It may sound stupid, but this past weekend I went to an amusement park and noticed that screaming my by head off on the roller coasters really helped.

I am SO grateful to have discovered this blog! Thank you for everyone for sharing their stories, it is such a relief to know that I am not alone and to feel that someone actually believes me , instead of brushing off my frustration with ” yeah, sometimes my mom is annoying too”.


Frustrated May 1, 2016 at 3:55 pm

Wow. A lot of that sounded like my wife’s mother who is probably a NARC. I hate that 90-year-old demon with every fiber in me and am becoming angry with my wife who enables and defends her mother (even though my wife is the SG and often argues with her mother). To go against that woman still results in consequences, even for my wife, and even when I have stood up to her mother she goes ballistic and my wife will always take her mother’s side (I think it is expected of my wife). NMIL believes she is always right and no one is to question that, and my wife does not want to hear me express any negative sentiments towards her mother. I am losing my patience fast.

This blog is indeed a godsend. At least here one can know they are not alone.


Kell July 26, 2016 at 8:41 pm

Melissa, this is incredibly late but I have had multiple dreams over the years where I am literally violently punching my mother repeatedly in the face. They have been so real at times I awoke terrified that it was real. I have so much rage and hostility that I still need to work through. Feels very lonely and makes me feel different and guilty to see other people praise their mothers to the heavens and back, and part of me deep down still questions whether it’s something about me that has kept the relationship with my mom so dysfunctional.


Elizabeth October 22, 2016 at 11:05 pm

Kell, believe me, it’s not you – it’s your mother! When my NM did something especially painful and egregious a few years ago, I flew into a rage and fantasized slamming her head against the wall and throttling her until blood gushed out of her mouth! I drove past her workplace several times and waved my fist in the air and shouted at the top of my lungs (while still in my car driving with the windows up), “I’ll Kill You – I WILL KILL YOU!!!!!! When I got home I did the same thing, except I screamed into a pillow instead. I pretended she was standing in front of me and I warned her that if she EVER came back into my next life, I would MURDER her. This anger and acting-out went on for a few days until I felt that I had gotten most of it out of my system. I honestly thought that this fury would cause me to have a stroke! That was the beginning of the end of my relationship with her – I had finally seen her for the Evil Bitch that she truly was. Next month I’ll be celebrating three years of NC with this POS. I ‘ve never felt better and just wish that I would have had the courage to do this three decades ago. I’m now 54 years young and plan to enjoy the rest of my life without her in it. Take care.


Lydia August 6, 2016 at 9:57 am

Always late because I just joined recently but if you read this, you are not alone in having recurring nightmares.  I had them about my mother in my late 20’s / early 30’s, early in my marriage. I too found that going to college sporting events / amusement parks helped if I screamed my head off there. But I thought everyone had nightmares like mine – it was part of separating from family. (So silly now, to think that.) 

So glad you moved 4000 miles away. I hope you are building a wonderful life. We live with an entire state between us in the US, and it’s not far enough. My NM loved to play the “cat and mouse” game with me too. I once drove 500 miles to pick up some of my high school art work (sentimental value, including one 36″ by 24″ custom framed work) before she moved. When I left my home swore she had it but when I arrived she “couldn’t remember” where it was and “besides the truck is packed already. I’ll have to mail it to you.”

That was ten years ago. She’s moving again and I just got this VM that she “needs my help, because BTW, I think I found your artwork, so you should really come and get it.”

Not worth it. Get out when you can and stay out. Calibrate your BS detector and Stay strong. — Peace


NicoleK February 2, 2017 at 7:28 pm

I am so glad I read your specific post. What you said resonates so strongly with me. I always, always thought (and was told) there was something deeply wrong with my character. My mom said I was always angry as a child, as if the anger was inherent and not a function of her abuse. I have few memories of my childhood, but those I do have are rage filled memories of physical abuse and being locked in my bedroom. I was also a target for bullies outside the home, and was brought to a therapist to figure out what was wrong with me. I remember that when I was just a very little kid I would actually tell my mom I was going to kill her. I know how sick that is, but I do not hurt things, ever, I am the kind of person that never drives by a turtle in the road without stopping to save it., and can’t walk away from a bee drowning in a swimming pool without rescuing it. I am not a violent person yet I remember actually screaming and believing that I wanted to kill my mother when I was very young. Our relationship had a temporary renaissance when my older sister, the golden child, married and distanced herself, as I was promoted to replace her, and this has caused me tremendous confusion because now that I am firmly back in my scapegoat role I remember those moments when I could do no wrong in her eyes and I question my decision to get away. I’m so happy to have read your post because it reminded me of the rage I felt toward my mom as a very young child and the memory feels validating because honestly – those kind of emotions in a child are abnormal and are reactions to abuse, not evidence of my character flaws. Nor are your dreams evidence of your defects but rather of the abuse you endured.


Jen May 4, 2015 at 11:44 pm

Even in my mid 40s I still find the anger to be unbearable on a regular basis. My N mother used her OCD to control me growing up and I lived in constant fear. Bullies would triangulate me and watch her freak out on me as she would take me outside to slap me left and right sides of the face to make sure the whole apartment complex could see she was a diligent mother. She was the most unsafe person for any child to be left with and yet she moved me from school to school every time I developed any social network as it was too threatening for her. I just can’t speak to the devastation I feel to this day of being overcontrolled, shamed, grabbed by the face and head so often and such. I don’t understand why it still bothers me but it truly does inspire hate and anger in me. It gets rebooted weekly when she comes to my home and visits my young family. Refers to me only in the third person as “my daughter”. Am strongly considering going NC because I don’t see my symptoms abating with LC. Just am grateful for any resource that speaks to the harm this does.


NicoleK February 2, 2017 at 7:32 pm

Jen – I feel your pain.


Verity March 5, 2017 at 12:17 am

Jen, this is horrible abuse. I watch my own mother carefully around my children and end any visit if she starts on them. She considers my bold funny strong teenaged daughter to be disrespectful. Nope, just brought up to have strong boundaries and take no nonsense from vicious harridans! We all need to be as strong and courageous as we can be. I am low contact. I really grieve for all the childhoods we didn’t have. And for the self esteem we have spent most of our adult lives acquiring when it was our birthright and has been stolen from us. I know my mother had it done to her. Hurt people hurt people. The best thing I think any of us can do is to stop the cycle so our children and theirs etc do not get out through this abuse. I keep a check on myself. We learned these behaviours so well and when we are sad or lonely or disappointed by life we need to be sure we just deal with it and don’t use those old narky ways we learned to manipulate our nearest and dearest to take the pain away. The pain passes. I had a brilliant therapist for a few years and that so helped me get straight with myself and hand back all my mother’s nonsense to her. I can see her fine now, just with the proviso above that I watch her around my kids.

Take care all and keep going!


Em May 9, 2015 at 5:00 pm

Mothers Day always makes me feel sad. My mother and I have not spoken for a month since her father passed away. I told her what days I was not working (I am a nurse and uni teacher) so I could attend the funeral, so of course she planned it on the day I was working! I rang her to apologise and she would not answer my calls. Then my little brother (who she recruits to do all her dirty work) rang me to abuse me, calling me selfish and thoughtless etc… Then my mother went on Facebook and put a public comment up about how I am a uncaring thoughtless daughter (I have lots of fellow nursing colleagues as friends on FB so my mother’s purpose was to publicly humiliate me). I was not online for a day or so, so found out only after a friend texted me to tell me how sorry she was that my mother had done that! I rang my mother to ask her why she wanted to hurt me, her response was “you have no concern for my feelings, I thought everyone deserved to see your true colours.”


Sweet Petunia June 5, 2015 at 12:07 pm

Em, Mother’s Day and my mother’s birthday tear me apart too. Your situation sounds so much like mine. After no contact with her for more than a year because she erased me from her life like I never even existed, I was feeling sad when her birthday rolled around so I sent her a small gift (still trying to get her love and acceptance, pretty pathetic, huh?) . At this point I still had not discovered/realized that she is a textbook narcissist personality.

Two weeks later she signed her house over to the Golden Child (who is also a narcissist and a criminal who is even worse than she is). The house was supposed to be sold and proceeds divided equally between us when she was gone. Just one more twist of the knife in my back from both of them. She probably thought I wouldn’t find out about it until she was gone and she could still torture me from the grave.

Now I have to figure out how I am supposed to accept this knowledge of what she is, what he is, and what they have done to me for the last 50+ years, and how am I going to go on with my life after having the rug ripped out from under me and knowing that what I believed to be a close relationship with my mom was nothing more than a façade and a decades long act of manipulation and using me until I started seeing through her and I became the scapegoat.

How am I supposed to even begin to process that this late in my life?


NicoleK February 2, 2017 at 7:38 pm

Hi Sweet Petunia-

I feel similarly. I’m 34 and only now catching on that everything I thought was true about life, was false. It was easier in some ways to believe that I truly was messed up fundamentally. Believing that my entire life allowed me to keep the peace because I always had the option of crawling back and apologizing and getting more therapy to diagnose myself so I wouldn’t be such a toxic influence on my family…I was so well brainwashed. Now that I realize whats been happening, that I was the scapegoat and not the toxin, the whole world looks like a very very scary place. Naturally the people in my life are invested in the doormat I was before I realized that I was scapegoated and am not bad/crazy. It feels like an insurmountable amount of work to reverse this. So I get it – how the heck does one even begin to do this?


Sandy February 3, 2017 at 2:23 am

Ghastly, isn’t it. Absolutely. Everything was a lie. Its a deep pit to wade through to the other side. I can only speak from my own experiences with this. Two years in to the knowledge, still feeling kinda naive I didn’t figure it out decades sooner than in my 50s, but nothing before its time I guess. Pause for a very heavy sigh.
Same stories everywhere, still reading about stuff that happened like yesterday with my mom in forums with 6-year old posts. Its a sad relief.
Think I spent almost the 1st year of this knowledge in anger, venting how ever I could… yelling to the air from the seat of my soul if the moment allowed it. Tears of rage, sadness, utter grief – wailing over the lie that my mom was, the lies she lived, the lies our family lived, the bad mothering she received, the lie that my grandma was, the person my mom actually is, and letting it settle in she never loved me, couldn’t/wouldn’t what e v e r, and never will.
In the depths, it really was nothing that I didn’t know, all my life. To see that society’s version of “mother” is just another lie we’re fed, hopefully will guide me to make better decisions.
The scapegoats are the ones who figure things out… we stand the best chance for survival and knowing what we know (thanks mom) we now have the upper hand. And yes I see “them” everywhere, now. Now I know what to do with them. Great life skills!
Gotta walk through the pit first, though I’ve found… still tears or yelling at the drop of a hat, if I can do it in private. Gotta get it out… write it, lift weights and “pump” it out, yell at them in photos and there is power in shredding a photo with an angry mother in it, along with a few select cuss words. Smash some old glassware in a safe place and manner, there can be such release in the sound of that smash.
Go figure – she gave me an old plate to sell in a garage sale… a plate I bought for her when I was 10… yes a mother’s day gift. Smashed that just last week. To smithereens.
Learn to laugh at their utter stupidity. From old advice in a forum on this site, when you’re with them, take them off their game… do stuff like look just over their eyes, in conversation. Practice not giving them any of your energies.. practice apathetic responses…. like whatever it is, you could care less.
This knowledge will do nothing but empower you Nicole. I read about the anger we must let out, when we find out. We all have a lifetime of it. I didn’t realize I was doing it until months into it when I felt silly after raging to the air.
I’m so ecstatic for you that you have gained this wisdom in your 30s! Nothing before its time of course. I applaud you and this note of support in your journey!


NicoleK February 3, 2017 at 8:14 pm

Sandy – thank you so much for your response and sharing your experiences! I really appreciate the validation of the incredible anger that comes with the understanding and realization of what’s happened. I do have to find an outlet and I appreciate your suggestions. Gosh it’s hard to take off the rose colored lenses and see the world as it truly is! I feel like I have a massive process of disentangling myself from a big web of lies and relationships that reinforce those lies. I would love to hear more about how you changed your life and whether you had to alter any other relationships outside the one with your mom. Did you find that you were entangled in many similar relationships and how did you extricate with self destruction?

Sandy February 4, 2017 at 5:48 am

Hi Nicole and congrats again on figuring out the nonsense and the truth in your 30s! I raise my morning cup of coffee as a toast to you.
Its an anger like no other isn’t it. You’ll find your outlet. Art? Cranking the music in the car and singing your heart out? Punching a pillow? Just let it out because the body cannot take holding that kind of stuff in. In my 50s I can say that with experience. Writing on this forum is also a manner of getting it out. Your truths. The truth.
I’m still wading in the mush here & probably will be until she’s found her way to heaven, I hope I’m not seeming to sound like I’ve got it all sewn up, as I sure don’t. I just know what has worked for me so far in the thick of this thick jungle.
Altering other relationships… is it a lifelong thing? I don’t know that its age-specific but once you can detect them, it becomes easier to detach from them. And then what, right? And how many of them have we let in to our lives, given our circumstances, probably allot. (I’ve read a good way to “test” for one is to ask them for help with something and measure their response… I don’t know about that but it does make sense)
Once you help eliminate the toxic energies of them in your space, as thats what it is, is energies, you will act differently and healthy people will notice that. Doesn’t happen overnight. But sometimes, it does.
Scapegoats know about energies because ours has been sucked from us literally and physically, emotionally and the love… oh the love. Sucked by those who birthed us. Like what in the “crying shame”…
What saved me is finding this forum. There was an active forum here at the time where many topics were posted and so much advice and wisdom was shared. Poster Karl changed my life’s perspective early on when he told me I had super powers (we all do). My newly discovered one was apathy in my responses to her. Don’t feed the monster.
I’ve watched days worth of you toobs videos. Narcissism Survivor is the guy who first told me that my mommy don’t love me, first step in healing and acceptance he said in the nicest gentlest way. Hes such a great guy, so many videos with so many viewers and good comments too. I think its Lisa Romano who also has a ton of videos that have been super valuable in maintaining, moving on, sorting things out.

I think you’re a free spirit, and envisioning yourself actually entangling yourself from that big web of lies, flying to your goals, your dreams couldn’t hurt a thing – even multiple times a day. If videos appeal to you, search out ones on ways to handle anger, you’ll probably run across Eckart Tolle in there somewhere. The net has opened up so many doors for healing, sharing, dismantling that deep ugly awful web.
Happy flying!! Thank you for replying.

MP November 3, 2015 at 8:12 pm

Melissa, thank you for what you wrote. I could have written it myself. I’m 61 and still utterly trapped. I always assumed there was something fundamentally wrong with me – in all circumstances and situations. I have a husband and two wonderful children, but I have no friends. I’ve met a lot of nice people over the years, but I have no idea how to “be” with them – I have no idea who “I” am. I’m so afraid of people. Only this past year have I learned of this NM issue and the effect it has. When I was about 8 years old, I asked my Mom whether I had the right to call myself “I.” I was serious. She laughed out loud and told me I was a foolish little girl. To this day, I feel as though I don’t belong among the “special” people.


LO December 24, 2015 at 10:34 am

What a godsend this site is! Thank you to all who have left their experiences here. I’m having a great deal of difficulty getting traction in life after having to leave a dysfunctional family of origin system and narcissistic mother and then ex-husband. I’m 55 now and lost so much financially as a result of my enmeshment and co-dependence with my parents. I have an excellent and supportive therapist who is an expert in family systems and discourse. The challenge is that the hole is so big – I can’t seem to find who I am or my place in the world. I am afraid of re-engaging with life. Intellectually I understand but my body remembers. I feel very lost.


"Her Right-hand" @ 63 November 21, 2017 at 3:50 am

I say yes and yes and yes and “ouch”! Our bodies truly DO REMEMBER!


Marvin January 19, 2016 at 8:53 pm

I FINALLY am finding out the answer to my HUGE question that needed to be answered for my ENTIRE life. I ALWAYS always always try to figure out what am I DOING WRONG>>>> I try to parent my children to be independent, but when my mother is involved, it is as if I am doing a deadly sin by letting my children make their own sandwiches, do a few a chores, etc. I have four children, and when she upsets me my first instinct is “You have to protect your children.” My daughter has nightmares that involve my own mother? WHY have I JUST NOW at 35 realized this? There control tactic is emotional and financial with a sarcastic dash of pitting, and demeaning. I CANNOT believe I just read the answer as to WHY. All of my life, from a VERY young age, I have been wanting out. The very same night I graduated high school I was gone. It is really weird, as I thought I was such a screw up, my entire life. I am emotionally broke, and now because I am a medically retired veteran, with four children, I have no choice, for my children’s well being to be here. This time when I returned “home,” I saw it, but I still couldn’t understand it. I, now, do. My story is SO long, anything from memories of hiding under my bed from my mother being drunk, to building me up, and then all of a sudden, seemingly knocking me emotionally, and it seems as though it is purpously done. She does not act herself when my sister, the absolute perfect, but yet completely sheltered child is around. So my sister is a victim as well, just used a different tactic, from what I gather. The pitting of us two is sickening. When we are around each other alone, we are fine. I am finding my mother plays off of myself, my younger sister, and my step father (which I just found out about). My step father is her enabler, anytime something is wrong with her, it is my fault, no matter what. I remember watching my sister at young age, she was whining she was hungry, and I was told not to cook. I cooked for her, because if they came home and she was upset, I was done, but because I cooked I was done. I was screwed either way. I JUST started seeing this about a month ago. This is all so new to me, but makes SO MUCH sense. I question myself everyday if I am crazy, what can I do, what can I fix? My mother tells my children of all the f ups, excuse me for being blunt, that I did as I was the “f up” child. She laughs when I am struggling with my children, and gloats that she will on a beach sipping margaritas. I would never think of doing this to my children, but yet she is seen as a saint to most, but SOME can right through her. I am in shock, and I have a lot of healing to do. Right now I am in protection mode, for my children. I am afraid of her and my father, and I truly think they are evil people. And I feel guilty for thinking this. Anyone that can help with this would be great, as now that I have realized, I have absolutely NO ONE to confide in. I used to think it was her, HUGE mistake. 35 years old, divorced from an abusive relationship, that my mother sided with my EX! Because of this, my children were hurt. They used financial power to control this situation and even paid for the divorce. It was actually THE best thing that had EVER happened to me, as I became independent, fully, as I was always referred to as the independent child, which seemed to irk my mother. Unbelievable, there is an answer. I can’t say enough that I am in shock, that I am not alone and I just found out my 30 year question of WHY: and WHAT am I DOING SO WRONG. Anger, hatred, impulse to protect my children from them, guilt loss. What?


Marvin January 20, 2016 at 4:22 am

See? I woke this morning, feeling guilty for ever writing anything here. Although, I know in my head that these are facts, I feel badly for writing them. I always this “something is wrong” feeling in my gut. I really need to know if this the problem in our household. It sounds just like my sister, myself, my mother (more than likely NM) and my “father,” the enabler of my mother. I REALLY would like some feedback, as it is a critical point in my life to figure out what in the world is wrong in this household. My sister’s husband stated me, I don’t ever see her act like this, which was VERY surprising to me, and my response just fell out of my mouth. I said, “Well, the wife you are seeing now, is the only way I have known her to be. I thought she had changed, and I had a friend, and as I was saying this I held back my tears.” We do not cry in public, or in open in this family, it is weak. In need of someone’s Anyone’s insight. Thank you.


TheDaughter February 11, 2016 at 3:12 am

Please see my reply to you and stay strong!


Nancy March 4, 2016 at 10:31 am

Hi Marvin, sounds like you have a narcissistic mother. Always protect your children. I tried to protect my children from my mother but, of course couldn’t completely protect them. I did not really know what I was dealing with until about a year ago. Little by little and bit by bit the truth of what happened has become evident. My children hate her even now though. I hate her too. She is 89 and I am the only left out of our little nuclear family of 4 to help her. I fight anger every time I am around her. She did so many things throughout my life. It is very difficult to deal with. Thanks for just letting me express this little bit.


Papillion May 6, 2016 at 10:31 pm


I hope that things are becoming clearer for you, and that you are slowly becoming stronger. The path of recovery is neither quick nor painless, but it is so very worthwhile!

I really appreciated the part of your earlier post when you pointed out that independence seems to strongly trigger the N. Probably others’ health, happiness and independence is what pisses them off the most, LOL. But having said that, over the years I have learned that they are so sick, that they will say or do or use *anything* against their targets–positive or negative–just to throw the target off balance, make them “wrong,” try to gain control, try to put themselves in a position of perceived power, try to create distractions from their own terrible behavior, etcetera, ad nauseam.

A lot of Ns learned their behavior from seriously messed up upbringings, which may have involved war, dire poverty, criminals, religious abuse, sexual abuse, substance abuse, etcetera. Many of these issues are intersectional, so even if there is no N-support group near you, you may find it helpful to attend a group which focuses on an issue like Co-Dependency, just to observe different ways of communicating. Sometimes it does feel as though nobody outside of these groups/forums really understands the truth of what we have lived with!

You and your children are worth protecting. Without an intervention, an abuser’s behavior tends escalate over time. (You may also wish to Google a graphic illustration of the Wheel of Power and Control, which explain the cyclical nature of abusive behavior.)


Lydia August 6, 2016 at 10:34 am

Here’s my experience. Hope it helps. Sounds like your kids are young, So protect them with all you can. Listen to your gut even if it feels like overkill at times. 

My NM started a PR campaign for herself, early on showering my pre-teens with giftcards and money and shopping sprees to “buy” their affection. She also love-bombed them on FB and other social media. As they grew she directly messaged them with “I’d SO love to see you; why don’t you come to my house for a sleep over/ movie night/ vacation/ week this summer?” and so on. 

Directly cutting you out of the picture. 

This is problem with socia media. In the old days everyone in the house could hear the teenager’s convo with grandma on the one housephone– today, everything is done online. 

I’ve never wanted to “keep” my kids from having a relationship with Grandparents but bec she is an proven NM, she only sees my kids as “trophies” to “show off.” As objects. 

And while our society can make kids center of attn, I try to instill a sense of social graces in my kids. (ie,  You speak, then let others speak, etc.)
But from my observation of her interactions with them over the years (at family functions, etc.) she doesn’t even LISTEN to them answering her questions. She just talks right over them as if they are not there. They have made up their own minds that they don’t want much to do with her, Thank God. 

My NM sees this as a game and a challenge and she is in it for the long haul. So gear up. Do all you can to nip it in the bud. Sometimes kids have to go to Grams for a week to see for themselves. If it’s safe, let them try it. But Address NM directly when she tries to intervene or discredit you to your own children. Draw firm boundaries with her. Monitor her social media interactions w/ them as long as you can stand it. 

But know in your heart that good will prevail. 


"Her Right-hand" @ 63 November 21, 2017 at 4:00 am

God bless you!!!! AND THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE!!!! You are a godsend to your children. NO it’s NOT YOU!!! You are in my estimation LOL young to figure this out as I am 63!!!! You have SO much on your plate. Counselling has helped me. Might you consider it? If not for you then for your kids’ sake? You are yep you are a survivor and I hope you know how valuable you are.
Her Right hand


TheDaughter February 11, 2016 at 3:12 am

Marvin – do not feel guilty! You are just writing the truth about your life. Narcissists are evil people, they have no empathy, and they control and manipulate. As difficult as it seems, do the right thing and take care of yourself and your immediate family. Have no guilt and work through your anger and sadness. You can right this wrong you have endured by changing things for your children’s lives and love them unconditionally. It is okay to feel anger, but please do not let it consume you.


Tracy March 21, 2016 at 10:51 am


My name is Tracy and I will be 42 years old next week on Easter weekend. I didn’t want my NM at my house for my B-day so we had an early Easter dinner this past weekend. Needless to say, I was wreck all day yesterday. It’s like I dread her coming for 2 weeks, then she comes and then I have to break down crying and emotionally try to cope with her destruction from the day. I finally decided yesterday to get on here and really start working on me.

I was always in the hero/golden child role most of my life. From a very young age like 4, I can remember the responsibility put on me to make her feel better and take on her feelings. I have one sister who is 7 years younger. My father passed away when I was 12 and my mother moved along to another man immediately. We were never able to grieve for our father. There were never any photos of him around the house. And, he was made out to be a bad person. About 2 years ago, I realized I had a NM. She’s played my sister and I against each other our entire lives. Luckily, we both realized what was happening around the same time. We’ve come so far in 2 years and now have each others backs. But, we are constantly going through so many roles and emotions. We both try to get away from her but we can’t. On top of all of this, my 21 year old daughter announced she is gay and this past weekend was the first time that my NM met her partner. I’m sure everyone can only imagine how hard that was for me. I didn’t eat all day, I was sick, I just hate the way I feel when she’s in my home, on the phone, etc I panic when the phone rings. I hate this feeling.

I’m so full of hate and disgust for her. It’s hard to look at her. I think she knows that I’m stronger and don’t need her. I think she’s probably scared that she’s lost her hero. She’s now in a stage of “Disowning me” it seems. Little things like calling me by my name in person when she greets me instead of saying, Hi, sweetie it’s Hi Tracy. Little things that only I see and hear. She’s so incredibly rude. She criticizes EVERYTHING, makes disgusting faces when she’s not happy and has this terrible “laugh” which is so sarcastic. Does anyone else experience the “faces.” This past Christmas I balled like someone had died after she left my house because of a poinsettia. Yep, you read that correctly. A poinsettia in an ivy plant that I had bought. I said, “isn’t that pretty” (BIG MISTAKE). She went on to tell me how ugly and fake it looked. Then a week later informed me how ugly my entire house was decorated and why don’t I ever buy any new decorations. That night I felt like someone had died and all over a poinsettia. I’m just at a loss. I don’t know what to do. Luckily, I live about 40 minutes away and have been able to distance myself some. I know boundaries need to be set, I just don’t know where to start or how. Can anyone tell me what happens to the NM if you cut them out completely? I know I shouldn’t feel guilty but of course I do. I have huge issues with guilt when it comes to everyone and everything. Anyways, have any of you heard how your NMs have done once you moved on? I’m fearful she will commit suicide. She’s threatened that since I was 4 or 5. She’s extremely depressed most of the time.

Any help or advice would be so greatly appreciated!


Tina April 6, 2016 at 12:34 pm

Hi Tracy,

Gosh I really feel for you and so completely understand where you are coming from. I was also the golden child and meant to feel I was responsible for my NM feelings. Over the years I had to distance myself from her insanity. She has essentially pushed everyone away with her rage and blame game. We had a big upset in our family recently and it has come to the point that I cannot have any contact with her. I am in my early 50’s and it has taken my whole life to feel justified for not being in any contact.

I have been wracked with guilt but also know I must protect myself and my family. We really did try to hold it together with her for so many years but because of her actions, it has not been possible. And I think this is what you must consider when you are facing your own guilt and decision to see her or not. You must remember that you are acting sane and kind and with only the best intentions and she is incapable of that and will push your buttons every single time. You only get one life and while we must each make decisions for ourselves for what we are willing to endure, I say living a life surrounded with positivity and regard for humanity makes us better people during our time on earth. We cannot save even our own mothers if they are incapable of understanding or accepting that they have produced the outcome of their own lives. This is what I review in my own head all the time and it really helps center me.

I live with guilt and grief and sadness and with mother’s day coming up I’m going to come up with something to do with my own family so that we can all be happy. It will be the first mother’s day where I will have absolutely no contact. I had to block her calls and she has not tried to contact me by email or regular mail, which she could do if she wanted to. I tell myself I am better off, even though it does hurt to be at this point. I have also wondered about her committing suicide but what can I possibly do? I know she needs help and it is devastating to have seen her suffer my whole life but she has been told over and over again that she needs help and she has refused to even consider anything anyone says. Do yourself a favor and do not play the What If game in your own mind. You cannot predict the future and although she talks about suicide, it is definitely an attention getter which would pull you right in to the madness. I know it sounds harsh but for me, I’ve needed to free myself from thinking I have any responsibility over anyone else, including my mentally ill mother.

Please remember to love yourself every single day and never feel guilty for that. You deserve it and you will be amazed by the wonderful things that open up for you.

I also think that being honest, which takes some guts, is the best way to communicate with your NM. If you say “I do not like the way you speak to me and I will not engage with you this way”, or whatever, I think it really helps you take ownership of your own well being. She still might not really get it and it’s not about attacking her but standing up for how you expect to be treated. It took me many years to get up the nerve to say how I felt and I haven’t expressed the half of it. So, in the end, silence has been the best policy and I now have room in my brain to focus on many things in my own life. I have no idea if I’ll ever speak to her again. It’s a strange feeling, but also freeing. I wish you well.


broken November 10, 2016 at 10:44 pm

Your stories could be mine. I was the golden child, but that meant my childhood was solely devoted to keeping her happy. I was an anxious depressed child trying to be a therapist for her mother, while my siblings still to this day hate and blame me for their problems.

Of course, I became a nurse and then married a man with BPD, a life sentence. I was created only to serve others.

She destroyed all of her children.


Gemma July 13, 2016 at 10:33 am

Ever since I can remember I haven’t been looked at the same as my mums two boys. I’m too loud to outgoing too ambitious.
ive always though I’m crazy and people have told me I’m too short tempered, but I’m not she’s cleverer than me she does things secretly she puts me down and seems so sweet and innocent to people outside the family.
My mother plays the victim and God does she play it well… It’s Oscar worthy …. When she washes up we have a running commentary of how I never help and how useless I am and how she wishes God would just take her … I can’t go on much longer like this it’s been my whole life and I just want a break … No one believes me my brothers either ran away and the other teams up with her because she gives him money … My partner is sick of hearing about it… I’m stuck I don’t earn enough to move … I’m considering just ending it all … If I does she wouldn’t cry Oh god Gemma’s dead she had her whole life before her… She would cry oh god My daughter is dead … It’s always about how if effects her … She blanks me and will not speak or look at me for days … And then from know where speak to me again like her disgusting behaviour didn’t happen … We live under a black cloud of her moods and my farther is an alcoholic who does anything to avoid what will interrupt his drinking…. Just need to know that things will get better because I don’t think I can cope anymore … Thanks for reading my first time Doug something like this


Gemma July 13, 2016 at 10:35 am

Apologies for the Bad spelling in the last post I was upset!


Susan August 31, 2016 at 6:51 pm

I suffer frequently from the toxic negative effects of the anger I feel towards my narc. Mother. I am mad at myself for taking her abuse for so long. I am 51 and just learned about narcissism a couple of years ago. She is a psycho somatic narc who is also addicted to painkillers and tranquilizers. In her old age this combination has become more than I can handle. The drugs have stripped away any filter that she had on her mouth. Blurts out any and all hateful comments and insults and doesn’t care who she hurts. Won’t acknowledge or ever apologize for any of it. I went no contact about 18 months ago. I am torn up inside because I also lost my father when I cut her off. He is the ultimate enabler. Has stood idly by while she pushed away every single member of his family from his parents to his kids and grandkids. Never has and never will stand up to her. She treats him like a gutter rat. He doesn’t see it. This has been a source of pain for me since I was a little girl. I always loved my daddy and looked up to him. He is a sweet man but she has taken over completely. He even denies her addictions. I had to walk away! I have teenagers and I don’t want them exposed to it. So, now I’m “the bad one”. I have lost my parents and am riddled with guilt. This has morphed into terrible anger. Every day another negative incident from the past pops into my brain like poison and ruins my day. I beat myself up for taking it from her for so long. The last straw was when she started on my 2 girls. Hurt them and you hurt me x1000. What do I do with this pain and anger? I need to get rid of it but I can’t. I suppose it will be cathartic if I was to exact revenge by saying and doing all the same to her but I don’t think I will ever get the chance.


Erin September 27, 2016 at 4:38 pm

I’ve always been an intense child. My mother, when i wasn’t behaving like a little girl should, would compare me to my bipolar aunt. it shut me up because it scared me. My aunt was “bad” and I was being “bad” and would grow up mentally unstable like my aunt (guess what – I didn’t). She would tell me I was bipolar and if I tried to deny I was bipolar that was actually further proof I was and that I had to listen to her because she knew. this followed me most of my childhood. Mistakes were really bad and very big deals. I would feel so guilty and ashamed. She didn’t like the music I listened to so she bought me christian music to try to persuade me to listen to something more appropriate. I love the colors purple, blue and green and she always called those “the colors of a bruise” and why didn’t I like pink and yellow – cheerful colors like she did. If I didn’t do well in school, it was bad. If I liked a boy, it was bad. I had “tunnel vision” something she still brings up today. I try to point out that my focus has brought me a lot of ability and stability but she still treats it like its a bad thing. If I don’t respond to her text messages or talk to her enough, she pushes my buttons. she knows just how to piss me off then when I do get angry and verbal she says I’m in a bad place and taking it out on the people who love me. i can never win. I went to a therapist last week who told me both she and my ex were narcissistic. they aren’t evil narcissists….they have this image of themselves and unless you feed it (which i’ve never been good at) you bump into that narcissistic rage and its ugly. i would tell my mom I wasn’t happy with my ex and she told me to reconsider, that he loved me and that i was being unrealistic. he nearly set the house on fire in a drunken stupor for her to say “oh he’s not good enough for you” like she’d been saying it all along….i had a lot of things happen at once that forced me to see, within the last month, that things were not right. i had talked to the therapist 5 years ago and while at th etime she didn’t say Narcissistic (I had a hard time explaining what my mother was to her becasue she can be so nice and sweet and motherly) but she used the word “sadistic” to describe what she said to me as a child about my mental health (which never was an issue but boy did I think i had issues in my 20s). last week when I realized my ex and her had so many things in common, i was able to describe more of what they did and she described what they were. she told me not to respond to my mother’s button pushing (boy is that hard – she mocks me or does whatever it takes to get me to respond). I really feel like my mother has this image of herself only as a mother to fulfill her and me being now 34…i don’t need her like that. i was never comfortable with my mother. i always sensed somethign was off. i never had the relationship with my mother other girls did. i didn’t want to talk to her about everything. and now i find when i do, she doesn’t get it, or she has potential ammo to use against me and tell me i have tunnel vision, i’m unstable, i’m in a bad place and that’s why i’m mad at her when she pushes my buttons (on purpose). mom will never change. we had a blow out a few weeks ago that led to the therapy session and i’ve only seen her once. i’m not really talking to her. i respond to her texts a bit but she’s not texting me a lot. now that i know and understand what she is, i’m struggling to figure out how the hell to move forward. i think limiting contact is necessary but with the holidays coming….i’ve not been comfortable around my mother since i broke up with my ex months ago –well less comfortable with her than usual. i think subconsciously i sensed the similiarities. i’m afraid of dating now. if i called her energy to me by dating someone with the same kind of narcissism she has….i’m afraid of doing it again…


NicoleK February 2, 2017 at 8:05 pm

Erin –

I have a very similar story. My mom blamed me for my intensity/anger as a child, taking me to therapists to be diagnosed, and meanwhile neglecting to recall that the anger was in response to her abuse. She was a bully and rallied my siblings and father to carry out her evil to allow her to look innocent. I too am now 34 and only now able to see the way she does it. A subtle comment meant to stir up hurt and angry feelings between me and my siblings, a comment that she will later deny making. A fight that she will try to start and in which I will not engage, which she will later claim I started. Have you heard of gaslighting? All these techniques they use are designed to make you believe that you are crazy. I recently learned that you don’t defend yourself against their crazy accusations because the act of defending yourself or getting all fired up and emotional is the desired response and makes them look right. So you just don’t engage. At all. The thing about fighting with pigs is that you’ll get dirty and the pig will enjoy it.


Dawn November 10, 2016 at 8:50 am

As a child i was the yOunger sibling there was only me and my sister no other children and i was constantly told i was a “Bad un” and played off against y sister and shown how well she was doing or old how lever she was and i could be to if i tried harder but no matter how i tried it never changed anything, thisin turn turned my sister into a little snitch who would delight in telling my parents anything and everything she could think of that might get me into trouble and grounded i spent alot of my childhood that i remember grounded to my bedroom only allowed out to use toilet then right back in there and allowed to table for evening meal otherwise they didn’t interact with me, during this time mother fell ill and for the next 2 yrs i can hardly remember seeing her she spent a long time in hospital and at my grandmothers home why me and my sister and father where at home, i tried my hardest to please only 11yrs old and cooking tea for me and my sister and father because i knew he would be tired all day and i really wanted to please him and mother, during this time, my sister as usual never missed a chance to drop me in it and loved telling me how bad I was and how i would go to a bad girls home and slowly the idea must of caught on because even my aunts and uncle’s started to say this to me and jump on anything they perceived as naughty, i was a bright child i think and all i wanted was to be loved for being m but it never happened, my mother got sicker and sicker and one day i remember going to my grandmothers and seeing the priest saying prayers over my mother in bed not moving just lay there and I didn’t know it at the time he was giving her the last rights and i remember thinking “Is my mum going to die”…….during this time also my grandmothers brother started to sexually abuse me so now as well as having the narcissistic father and spiteful sister making my life a misery had this guy constantly trying to get me alone or touching me when all the family where there but when they couldn’t see, so believe i must of started to be naughty and i would stay out later than i should of done but i didn’t want to go home i hated it and remember wanting to be dead and i was only 11yrs old….after a few months i was pregnant but my abuser had told me if i told anyone he would tell them i was telling lies and i’d get in load of trouble and be sent away to a bad girls home and o pregnant at just 12yrs old my mum started to get better she asn’t dying after all and so they took me to have th baby aborted and she said i could have a pot noodle for my tea why it was my favourite food back then, to this day it braks my heart to think i was murdering a baby of mine and i got a pot noodle for doing it….but it is what it is my parents also brought in the local authority telling them i was bad and a social worker started to come and see me a few times each week this went on for about 4 months but i was getting worse at hoe because i was so angry and i would get pushed so far off them all i felt like i was on a spiders web and the spider was trying to get me all the time, constantly on edge because my sister was constantly looking fo the slightest thing to drop me in it and so where both my parents i feel as if i became something for them to focus on for all that ailed them then 6wks after meeting my social worker i was told to get ready for school the day after my social worker was calling to see me she would take me to school afterward, oh yes she came alright with 2 massive guys and they told me i was going into an approved schol to see if they could mend my ways and that was it, 12yrs old budled into a car and taken to a lock up in St Helens in the UK i was there till i turned 16yrs of age, they unlocked every door in front of me and lckd every door behind me and they thought i was naughty but compared to the girls n this place i wasn’t naughty at all, i mean there where girl in there that where drug users nd prostitutes and that place became a lerning ground for me, every adult i met lied to me and taught me that to have control over others with what you knew about them was what made you strong, to be able to fight all of them is what made me strong, to have people fear me is what made me strong and many other lesson i was taught all nothing to do with the real world and fo good measure i was abused and beaten in his lock up, my parents came to visit once every 2 wks they said they couldn’t come every week because the expense was just to muchand also they told me every single time about 5 times each visit as if for good measure that “It cost 100 pounds a week to keep me in this place” and we sat 3 to a table i could only ever have 2 visitors at a time and we all faced the desk at the front in th middle of like a horse shoe formation is how i can describe the table’s we sat at for this hour long visit every week and the only reason i looked forward to it was because i could smoke a many ciggarettes as they would bring me and at that age and in front of the other girls it looked cool for me to have loads of smokes, and so by the time i go out of that place i had no idea what real love was, i’d never had anyone really ove me and so i moved back to my parents home and i was forced to do a job filling shelveS in a shop, they wouldn’t let me Choose what i wanted to do FOR A LIVING AND I HATED LIVNG IN THEIR HOUSE, FOR THEM NOTHING HAD CHANGED AND IN THE FIRST WEEK I WAS BEING TOLD I’D NEVER BE ANY GOOD OR CHANGE MY WAYS, I WAS A WASTE OF SPACE AND SO THE FIRST BOY I CAME ACROSS THAT SHOWED ME ANY ATTENTION I FELL FOR HED OVER HEELS, I DIDN’T KNOW HE JUST ANTED SEX, I REALLY THOUGHT HE LIKED ME AND SO I HAD SEX WITH HIM 1 TIME AND NEVER SAW HIM AGAIN AND GUESS WHAT? i WAS PREGNANT AS SOON AS i TOLD MY MOTHER SHE THREW ME OUT OF THE HOUSE WITH ALL MY CLOTHES AND TOLD ME TO NEVER COME BACK AGAIN, FROM THERE I WENT INTO ANOTHER ESTABLISHMENT BUT IT WAS A CHILDREN’S HOME UP UNTIL HAVING MY BABY AND MY PARENTS LET ME COME HOME TO LIVE AGAIN, FROM THE START THEY TOOK OVER AGAIN AND I WASN’T ALLOWED TO BREATH, I COULD LOOK AFTER MY DAUGHTER WHICH I DID AND DID WELL BUT I HATED THEM ALL WITH A PASSION AND THE FIRST CHANCE I GOT I WAS OUT OF THAT HOUSE AND I MET ANOTHER BOY AND HAD A SON WITH HIM AND WE WAS OK-ISH FOR A COUPLE OF YEARS BUT HE HAD ISSUE’S TOO AND WE ENDED UP ON DRUGS AND MY PARENTS CONVINCED ME MY DAUGHTER WOULD GET TAKEN OFF ME AND I SHOULD LET HER LIVE WITH THEM AND GIVE THEM CUSTODY AND I DID AND FROM THERE I WENT HEADLONG INTO A WORLD OF DRUGS AND PROSTITUTION AND SHOPLIFTING TO SUPPORT MY HABIT AND ALL THIS TIME I WAS HOMELESS, I USED TO TURN UP AT MY MOTHERS WHEN I WANTED TO SEE MY DAUGHTER FOR AN HOUR OR TWO WHICH SHE LET ME DO FOR SO LONG AND THEN SHE TOOK ME TO COURT TO TRY AND GET ME STOPPED FROM EVER SEEING MY KIDS AGAIN, LUCKILY THE JUDGE REFUSED AND MY HEALTH VISITOR AND DOCTOR SPOKE UP FOR ME AND SAID WHAT A GOOD MOTHER I HAD BEEN WHEN I WAS ABLE TO AND THEY HELPED ME GET IT FIXED WHERE MY MOTHER HAD TO LET ME HAVE ACCESS TO MY CHILDREN, DURING THIS TIME HER AND MY FATHER HE WAS JUST AS BAD THEY WOULD TELL ANYONE WHO WOULD LISTEN HOW THEY HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH ME AND H0W ASHAMED THEY WHERE OF ME ETC IT TOOK ME UNTIL I WAS 40 YEARS OLD WITH A LIFETIMES OF EXPERIENCE UNDER MY BELT AND HAVING MET EVERY TYPE OF PERSON GOING TO B ABLE TO START TO PROCESS WHAT HAD HAPPENED TO ME …I AM NOW ALMOST 49 YRS OLD AND ANGRY AT THEM BOTH, SO ANGRY AND EVEN NOW THEY NE ER TAKE ANY RESPONSIBILITY FOR WHAT HAPPENED TO ME AND THE COURSE MY LIFE TOOK THEY TELL ANYONE AND EVERYONE WHO WILL LISTEN THAT I WAS A BAD ONE AND WOULDN’T LEARN MY LESSON OR DO AS I WAS TOLD……NOT SURE I’L EVER BE AT PEACE BUT I’D SAY IT’S MY FATHER WHO IS MORE NARCISSISTIC THAN MY MOTHER AND MY SISTER SHE’S STILL A BITCH WHO KNIVES ME IN THE BACK AT EVERY OPPORTUNITY AND WE DON’T SPEAK, SHE PRETENDED SHE WANTED TO BE MY FRIEND AND BE THERE FOR ME WHEN I STOPPED USING DRUGS AND STARTED GETTING MY LIFE TOGETHER BUT IT WAS LIES SHE DOES NOT WANT TO BE FIRENDS SHE WANTS TO BE ABLE TO COME TO VISIT ME WHEN EVER SO SHE CN FIND OUT ANY INFORMATION THAT MIGHT START MY PARENTS OFF ON ME AND SHE STILL LIVES AT HOME WITH OUR PARENTS AND I KNOW SHE’S AS MUCH A VICTIM OF THEM AS I AM BUT I CAN’T FORGIVE HER, MANY TIMES I FELT LIKE I WAS DROWNING IN MY LIFE AND TURNED TO MY SISTER FOR HELP AND SHE PUT HER FOOT ON MY HEAD AND PUSHED ME BACK UNDER THE WATER TO DROWN, SHE IS ALMOST 50YRS OLD AND IS BAD WITH HER NERVES, SHE HAS HAD A COUPLE OF BAD BREAKDOWNS AND BEEN HOSPITALISED FOR THEM AND IT WAS ME THAT WENT TO VISIT HER EVERY SINGLE DAY ALONG WITH MY SON AND ME AND MY SON THAT WENT IN ON ANY DOCTORS SESSIONS THEY WHERE HAVING ON MY SISTERS BEHALF TO MAKE SURE SHE WAS TREATED FAIRLY AND PROPERLY BUT EVEN THAT WAS NEVER APPRECIATED SHE TELLS ME SHE DIDN’T ASK ME TO DO ANY OF THAT AND YOU KNOW ALL I EVER WANTED WAS TO BE LOVED AND I NEVER HAVE BEEN I’VE THOUGHT I HAD BEEN A COUPLE OF TIMES BUT IT WAS ONLY BECAUSE THEY FOOLED ME INTO THINKING THAT AND SO I WOULD FALL IN LINE WITH SOMETHING THEY WANTED, I AM NOT FOOLED BY ANYTING THEY DO THESE DYS AND I DON’T TRUST ANY OF THEM AT ALL AND DON’T THINK I EVER WILL, INFACT I DON’T KNOW WHY I EVEN GIVE THEM THE TIME OF DAY….WELL ACTUALLY YES I DO I SUPPOSE IT’S IN THE HOPE THAT THEY WIL WAKE UP TO WHAT THEY HAVE PUT ME THROUGH AND THEY WILL TELL ME THEY TRULY LOVE ME…BUT I AM NOT HLDING MY BREATH……A BIT LONG I KNOW AND I M SORRY IT WENT TO CAPITALS HALF WAY THROUGH I AM NOT SHOUTING I SAR….LOL……BUT I HAD TYPED WAY TO MUCH O GO BACK AND CHANGE IT ALL AGAIN…..THANK FOR LETTING E SHARE AND I THINK THIS SITE IS ACE 🙂


A December 20, 2016 at 4:33 am

Hi Michelle
Thank you for running & sharing this site with so many of us that needs answers/healing/a platform to share.
I appreciated it & find it helpful. I have learned here none of us are alone. And that I can now feel that there is truly nothing wrong with my ability to realiseabuse is abuse & none of us requires our NM’s premission to heal and thrive. I no longer need my NM’s validation to be me.
I will keep strong and stay kind


Bertie January 15, 2017 at 4:18 pm

There is so much wrong with my NM and my dysfunctional family, that I need to break it down by “chapters”. I will only address one problem during this writing.
I have one sister who is much older than I. My mother has always felt sorry for her and it goes “way back”. I guess my sister didn’t “marry well” (according to my mom) and basically, it meant that she didn’t have a lot of material things. I started to work full-time at age 18. By age 20, I was totally self-sufficient. I think the only thing my parents spent on me after age 20 was a pair of tires for my car. (That was 40 years ago). And so, I worked and made enough money to have my own apartment, pay for a used car, and support myself. Every two weeks I received my paycheck. The only selfish thing I did was go to the mall and spend about two hours buying one piece of clothing. Throughout the year, each year, I accumulated some clothes and shoes, which I loved. Every summer my sister and her family would travel home to spend their annual vacation with my parents. I was expected to give as much as I could, to my sister, who had so little. My sister would arrive home and my mom would have piles and piles of clothes sitting on the bed to give her. I was supposed to add my contribution. I’ve always been generous to a fault, and I would part with much of what I purchased that entire year. My clothes would also be piled up on the bed. My sister would sit there and go through each piece of clothing and cheerily say, “Thank you!” In addition, my parents would also load up their van with every conceivable thing that could fit in there. And thus went another annual vacation for my sister. This went on for years and years and years. My sister would say things to me like, “If it weren’t for you, I wouldn’t have a winter coat”. I’d give her the coat that I had made payments on. When I saw her the next year, she’d still be in need of a winter coat. I think I did that for three winters in a row. Eventually, I got married and started to “have more”. I’d still see my mom and sister for the annual vacation. If they liked my shoes, I was more or less expected to buy them each a pair of those particular shoes. When my mom visited my house, she’d walk up to something and feel as though she could just take it and bring it home with her. If she didn’t go “that far” she’d certainly drop every hint imaginable that she wanted what I happened to have. We’ve even gone shopping together before, and I had something in my hand that I was going to buy, and she literally yanked it out of my hand. Naturally, I had to pay for it. I put up with all this, dutifully, until I was about 40. I don’t know what light bulb finally went off, but I was just plain sick of it. On or around the same time period, my life was okay and their lives were both going down a “not so great” path. My sister left her husband (and kids) because “she didn’t have enough fun before she got married”. She then spent many years dating and going out, renting, making poor financial decisions, and eventually went bankrupt. My father died, thus leaving my mom on her own though she did own our family home. At that point, they both continued to look to me for help. I wasn’t the wage earner in our family; my husband was. We would do “nice things for them” once in awhile, but support them, no. We couldn’t have! My mom would even say to me, “You should be supporting your sister!” And I’d reply, “No, she is not my problem”. And my mom was pretty mad at me, because she wanted “more”. Pretty soon my mom started to treat me much differently. She would “go on and on” about how beautiful my sister was. And then she would tell me how she had “waited her entire life for a handsome man but didn’t get one” (referring to my father), and then say, “You look just like him”. She’d also tell me that if she had my face, and my money, she’d have had plastic surgery a long time ago. (I have a not-so-nice nose). My mom would go “on and on” about all of my sister’s wonderful boyfriends (from a long, long time ago). And I’d think to myself that they weren’t so great. And then I’d say, “I’ve gone out with doctors and lawyers” (which was true). I would get dead silence; no response from her. I’ll try to sum this up with a quick closing to this part of my story: When I quit giving, when I was unable to give them “what they wanted”, they never again treated me lovingly. I haven’t had a relationship with my sister for about 15 years. My mom and I had a gigantic falling out several years ago and did not speak for at least two years. Two year ago, I moved back closer to home. (A big mistake). I thought that perhaps my mom and I would be mature enough individuals to start our relationship over on a good note. But that did not happen. It is interesting that she walked in my house (which is not an expensive, fancy house), and lamented how difficult it was for her to “walk into my beautiful house”. And then, when she walked down the hallway, and saw that I had a “craft room”, she lamented how nice it must be to “have a husband who makes a lot of money”. (My mom always had tons and tons of things, and still does). And then, she became fascinated with two area rugs that we had. One in the living room, and one in the dining room. (Not Persian rugs, just rugs from Slumberland, something like that). Well, despite ALL OF OUR PAST PROBLEMS, she was still the same old person she always has been. She wanted two rugs, just like that, for her house. Think about that. Not a little thing. Two big area rugs. Despite all the fighting and all the past history. Well, I did not get her any rugs. Sorry to any of you who has to read all of this garbage. Because to me, this is “garbage”, but this has been my life.


NicoleK February 2, 2017 at 6:12 pm

Hi everyone!

I’ve contributed to the forum before and I’m back to vent some more and maybe hear some words of wisdom in response.

Ever since I’ve decided to distance myself from my mom and the rest of my family who all take part in helping me stay in my role of scapegoat, I’ve realized that to a great extent my entire life is populated with similar people. My own self-image has been shaky and dependent on outside validation for my entire life. The friends I’ve made, and the career path I’ve chosen, have put me in the line of fire of many narcissistic personalities. I feel like I’ve unconsciously chosen punishment in nearly every arena of my life.

I attract negative energy. I try to recognize toxic personalities and steer clear but I feel that in doing so, in setting boundaries, I am self-destructing. For example, I set boundaries with the abusive faculty at my medical school, and that has resulted in me being denied the financial aid I’m owed to pay tuition and living expenses. The faculty have threatened other students’ future careers when the students have tried to speak up. I am afraid and I feel intense anger, which has become exhaustion and a feeling that I can’t win or escape this.

Does anyone else have any experience with feeling like attempts to set boundaries have resulted in consequences that feel as bad as the toxic relationships themselves sometimes? I know at the end of the day living in integrity and self-respect by boundarying myself against abuse is preferable to living my life as a victim, but sometimes, when I consider that my future job might be at stake, I don’t feel so sure of myself.



annonymous February 28, 2017 at 6:22 am

My Narcissistic mother is polish and used a phrase she used (but it loses its viciousness in translation……when animals die they give off a scent..whic h is why other animals ‘sniff’ at them!!!

My loving mother would say, while beating me…I will beat you and ‘sniff’ to see if you were still alive!!!


annonymous February 28, 2017 at 6:58 am

It’s me again ( previous post!)

I am 50 years old and have discovered my mother is narcissistic just before Christmas and am still reeling!!! I am now reliving every memory of my life and analysing it…the realisation of what she was doing, the lies she has told, the control, the fear and why…for every interaction with her that I remember is head wrecking! They are still coming thick and fast! Her sick and brutal attempts to play siblings of against each other have failed as this has now united us, we are in constant contact now and supporting each other through this.

We are now empowered, the beatings and verbal abuse of all our childhood, acting as her slaves to meet her demands, was horrific…..the premeditated depths she sinks to for control and dictatorship and the enormity of her abuse has blown our worlds apart…Temporarily!
We are now standing together and kicking back, refusing to be bullied into slavery for her any more. It is driving her insane…. she has changed her tactics a little as ‘the stare’ does not terrify us anymore. We are now sitting back watching and listening to the scheming mind trying to play us and manipulate us into submission. The frustration has caused her to go into her usual rages as we dare to ‘defy’ her but no longer works…we just keep pushing back.

I am having therapy and though this is exhausting, draining and distressing at times too, as now we can all see exactly what she trying to achieve, her agenda! Together we have all gained an inner strength to stand up for ourselves and each other and to face the desperate brutal attempts to manipulate and to regain control of us……we put on our armour and face onslaught together…and she can no penetrate it…we WILL not allow her to any more!!

Though we all have a long road to recovery, a lifetime of abuse, we are beginning to realise we are good people and will now move forward and celebrate our survival!!!


Nina April 19, 2017 at 2:45 pm

This website is a life-saver!!! Thank you so much to everyone for sharing your stories. It makes me validated and less alone. I’ve always played the role of my mother’s mother. At a young age, she told me we had a special bond and then used it to manipulate and dump all her problems on me. She has betrayed my trust more times than I can count. For the past 20 years she has used her constant migraine headaches and stomach issues as a way to get attention from me. I only hear from her when she wants to complain about something or get sympathy. She is always the victim and cannot handle an adult conversation about feelings, especially if she is criticized in any way. Her favorite thing to say is “You’re picking on me” in the voice of a child. I have never felt loved by her, and she has no sense of empathy towards me. Everything is about her. It doesn’t matter what upsets or traumas I am facing in my own life…she’s experienced worse. It’s a constant competition. Reaching out to her for support is pointless, as she will only turn every conversation back to her. She wants to be my best friend and know everything I’m doing. She has no boundaries and treats me like a child. I get the sense she wants me to be just like her: miserable, unfulfilled, and self-loathing. I believe I have sabotaged any chances at happiness in my own life unknowingly due to her abuse. As a result, I have suffered from depression and anger issues for as long as I can remember.

I’ve hated being around her for the last ten years consistently, but couldn’t quite figure out why. I thought I was going crazy. Recently, at the age of 42, I have finally accepted that my mother has NPD. Once I started reading and gathering information it all made sense and everything I’ve felt and experienced my entire life clicked into place. I am extremely angry and don’t know what to do. I’ve been avoiding her for weeks, but I don’t know how much longer that will hold. I am single, don’t have a lot of friends and feel very, very alone. I have 2 sisters, but one is too enmeshed in my mother’s life and would defend her to the end if I ever brought it up. My older sister sees the narcissism and is very supportive. She was not used and manipulated in the way I was and has a very different relationship with my mother, so she doesn’t quite understand. I am the only one in the family who has ever gone to therapy, however it is viewed as a weakness, and I am labeled the “crazy one” or the one with all the problems. I realize now, my only real problem is my narcissistic mother!

I want a happy, healthy, and successful life for myself. My mother is toxic, and I can no longer be around her draining energy. We live in the same city, and I am planning on moving in the next few months to start a new life. It can’t come soon enough! I could continue to write about the many horrible things this woman has done to me, but I’ll stop here. Thanks for reading!


T September 11, 2017 at 5:14 pm

I read through all these pages and can’t help to think of all the pain caused by this abuse. I come from a very large family and am 75% down the line. There are many brothers and sisters older and I honestly can’t say what category I was in as a child. Instinctively I knew it was best to stay out of the light, try not to be noticed.

Both of my parents where Narcs and it’s hard to say who was worse. Mothers are suppose to love and protect there children,, fathers expection are typically less? I stopped calling my mother “mom” some 30+ years ago, and the funny thing is, she signs and uses her first name when she’s writing/speaking to me. I would like to say it’s passive/aggressive but really it’s a function of both knowing who she is. When my son graduated from high shool I asked who from my family he wanted to invite, he said “no one”. I honorees his wish.


sarah December 28, 2017 at 6:23 pm

Hi, Im 48 and have had the icing put on the cake by the relationship therapist, me and my husband are seeing, having explained the fear I have with regards making my own decisions, the anger and violence I experience inside of me and what I display because having experienced the scapegoating I was subjected too and the violence that was inflict on on me as a child, and how I have continued that on my self when I feel desperate, I envisage hanging myself and wanting to blow my face off with a shot gun, I have learned that I was raised by a violent narcissistic mother and an enabling father,I am so relieved about this, I know things were wrong in my life but there’s a name, an I can now observe this and name it but not needing to own it and for this I am happy. I am now on my road to recovery


Ami February 18, 2018 at 9:51 am

I hate my Mum. Sounds terrible doesn’t it. Something unsayable. The phrase conjures up an image of stroppy teenager going through a phase. But I am 41 years old, and very angry.
If I were to tell my story to someone who knows me, I would be afraid they would invalidate my feelings. ‘A lot people have it a lot worse then you’ or ‘ you are in your 40s, get over it already’. These are the people whose life has led a different path to mine, who can’t possibly understand how I’ve become the way I am.
I bother nobody. I’m completely self reliant. Earn a living. Have my own house; and never burden anyone with any problems. Not that I really have any problems. My life runs quite smoothly; but I have nobody in it, and I have crippling low self esteem. In a sense I’m invisible and feel insignificant in the grand scheme of things. My day to day life dilemmas outside work rang from ‘what should I eat tonight’ to ‘when should I feed my cat’
I might just continue this life until the day I die, and nobody would really know; just Oh, do you remember so n so.. Oh yes, she never had a partner, oh yes, that’s quite sad, and then change the subject to something equally ‘insignificant’ like talking about the weather. I sometimes wonder if it really matters that my life has turned out this way anyway. The older I get, the more apathetic I get when wondering how to change things. If I haven’t changed things by now, then what hope have I for the future anyway. And I’m OK.. Im not majorly depressed. Im quite unhappy, but I’m kinda quite used to it. Nobodys life is perfect anyway, right?
But at the same time, when I think these thoughts, the anger can really creep in as I know the reason at the bottom of this. It’s my mother.
If you were to meet my mother, you would probably think she seems like a ‘nice person’ and would say (or more likely just think), no it’s not like that at all, your mums nice. What are you talking about. That would suit my Mum down to the ground. The truth is though, things aren’t always quite as they seem.
My Mum and Dad got divorced when I was 9. Do I think that is the reason for my issues? Absolutely not! Plenty of children from divorced families go on to have very healthy relationships in their adulthood. I’m, not saying a parents divorce is insignificant. I think it does have an effect. I’m just saying in my case, that that alone was NOT the reason
My problem is NOT with my parents getting divorced, but with the relationship I had with my mother. Was she physically violent with me? NO. Was she an alcoholic? NO. Did she feed and clothe me? YES.
But the problem I had was the cumulative effect of subtle (and very deliberate) put downs, and my emotional needs being seen by her as far too insignificant to be met.
She says I was born insecure. NOBODY is born insecure.

My childhood was divided into two halfs. pe-divorce and post divorce. Pre-divorce I did feel quite happy inside. My mum still put me down before then, but I felt quite safe within my family, and my Dad was usually on my side. When I was little it was just me and my Mum at the day time while my sisters were at school, and my Dad at work. She seemed quite annoyed with me a lot of the time when it was just me and her. I was born quite a few years after my sisters and I wasn’t planned. Perhaps she saw me as a burden and she wanted to be free to do other things.
One of my earliest memories was me feeling all happy in the world around age 3 or 4; and running upto my mother and saying ‘I’m so happy to be me’. What a lovely thing to feel inside and say out loud. ‘I wouldn’t be pleased if I were you’, she said sharply’ when nobody could hear. All I remember after that was that I felt confused.
In my life what has been consistent is that when I have expressed being happy at any moment, my mother has been quick to shoot me down. It obviously wasn’t right for me to feel happy, or good within myself.
Another time when I was little, i was sent to tidy my room. I hadn’t done a good enough job in my mothers eyes. She told me if I didn’t tidy my room she would ‘throw me out the window, and that I would ‘break my legs and her and Daddy would leave me there as they just wouldn’t care.’ I remember that moment because i remember how devasted I felt and my world fell apart. I remember sobbing, ‘no mummy no’. It was the end of the world to be told that by the very person you are supposed to trust and love the most.
I remember having my hair very long which my Mum didn’t seem to like. She cut my hair herself and cut the length to my chin when it had been right down my back. I was crying while she was laughing.
Weekends were spent doing what my mother wanted to do. Antique shops and show homes are what she wanted, so that’s what the whole family had to do
Although I say my parents getting divorced isn’t what effected me, my situation became a lot worse when they did divorce. The reason for this is that my ‘Step Dad’ didn’t want me there and saw me as a threat to the relationship between him and my Mother. He was quite an aggressive personality and I spent much of the time treading on egg shells. To people I know, they probably wouldn’t understand, as they can’t know how it was behind closed doors. People have a public persona and a private persona, right?
It was just me, Him and my Mum in the same house, and I became very withdrawn. When my Mum put me down there was nobody to balance that out, and when he was critical of me, my Mother was always on his side. I was deeply unhappy and depressed, and kept getting told off for looking unhappy and told that I was attention seeking by looking unhappy.
The fact that I actually was deeply unhappy wasn’t even asked about or considered important enough to acknowledge. My needs were neither here nor there, and I was clearly seen as selfish if I dared think I had any needs (which I thought I didn’t anyway). I’m getting angry now as I’m writing this, because I know full well this is why I don’t feel important enough to have my needs even considered in an adult relationship (hence why I never have romantic relationships).

Once, I went to the doctors as a teenager because of feeling tired all the time. I didn’t really know at that time it would be down to feeling depressed. My Mum went with me and popped into the surgery before me, and told the doctor it is because of my Dad causing problems? I didn’t know my Mum was going to say that, and only found out when I went into the doctors room and they told me, and asked if that were true.
My dad NEVER caused problems, but clearly my Mum was worried that I might say something about her and my stepdad, so thought she would get in there 1st to protect herself. I can’t tell you how angry I am about that. That protecting herself was far more important than my wellbeing. I wish I had had it within me at the time to be able to tell the doctor that that wasn’t true, and to be more angry at my mum at the time. Unfortunately I didn’t even know what I felt let alone be able to express it.
Once when we were having an argument, my Mum told me she never loved me and it wasn’t her fault; that you can choose friends, but that you can’t chose your family. What a B****. What mother says that!? She also told me that if I ever have a problem I should not come to her about it, as she already hears my sisters problems, so I should find someone else if I ever need to talk to anyone!!??
She told me that me and her would never get on, even if I tried.
In my later teens I went to a pub about 5 miles away. I lived in a village and it was difficult for me to go out because it was extremely rare to get a lift from my Mum, and I generally had to rely on friends to give me lifts. One rare time my stepdad gave me a prearranged lift from another village where my friends actually live. Because it was a dark night, they asked if they could get a lift back from him to their house (we are talking less than one minute drive out of the way). Ofcourse left to me this would be fine, but I remember feeling scared as I would have to tell my stepdad this when he arrived to pick me up. When I did, he went mad and started shouting so that my friends could hear, and drove incredibly fast to their house. I was so embarrassed. When we got back I told my Mum who was completely on his side.
I went on a boat holiday; me, my mum, stepdad and stepsister. I had a cough. My stepdad was irritated by this and said I was attention seeking. He kept making comments like ‘hopefully its terminal’ He also got angry as he felt I didn’t jump off the boat quickly enough.. so angry that he grabbed my arm and said ‘see the trouble you cause, see the trouble you cause’ with a red angry face. The trouble I caused was simply just to be there!!! To exist!!. That was his real problem with me. He got so angry that we had to finish the holiday a day early! At least my Mum did stick up for me on that one occassion. It really stirs up some emotions when writing this.
If say, me and my step sister drew a picture, my step dad would say how amazing my stepsisters picture was; and then with mine, he would find something wrong with it, even if mine was better.
I had an operation on my nose in my later teens. On the day I was due to come out of hospital I hadn’t quite stopped bleeding, and they said I wasn’t allowed out until it had stopped because otherwise it could be dangerous. However, my Mum had ‘golf’ the next day and didn’t want her plans messed up, so she pretended to one of the nurses that one of the doctors had said i could go home as i had stopped bleeding (which I hadn’t); as obviously her golf was more important then my wellbeing. The next week was terrible, as I was continuously throwing up blood, I don’t think I’ve ever felt so ill in my life. But hey that’s not important is it!

Once flown the nest, before I acknowledged the anger I had towards my mother she would call me once a week, and we would have a superficial conversation, nothing particularly bad was said, there were no arguments, yet I would come off the phone absolutely seething without any clear reason why. In fact, there were times when I would throw the phone against the wall after having spoken to her despite the fact our conversation had been about as significant as talking about the weather. The bottom line being that I felt that she never loved me, that she never gave me her time, that I wasn’t very important to her, and so the superficial conversation would make me feel angry because each time I tried to talk to her about something deeper, or my feelings, she would sound bored and change it to something trivial
I have acknowledged the anger towards my mother which has helped to some degree, but I’ve still spent many further years trapped in the way i am. She still finds ways to put me down. She will still manage a derogatory comment about my appearance, or find a way of saying ‘such n such is doing so well’ and trying to draw a comparison between me and them.
I believe she does the same to my sisters. Unfortunately me and my sisters aren’t really close enough anymore to talk about this.
My Mum has a ‘nice life’ in that she is ‘well off’ and goes on numerous holidays and although my stepdad seems to be an angry guy (though he’s mellowed somewhat with age), he seems to be faithful to her. I think it’s very important to her for everyone to think she has a wonderful life. I don’t imagine she would ever admit to being unhappy even if she was. I think if she is the way she is; she can’t actually be truely happy; but it’s just that she puts her unhappiness on others…and I just can’t get over the selfishness of that!


Tundra Woman November 14, 2018 at 12:43 pm

Ami, she puts HERSELF FIRST, last and always, that’s the Theme of Her Life. They’re all big ol’ Projection Machines that spew their nasty far and wide on the daily. And it’s not gonna change. Character in adults is pretty well fixed and her’s is for sure. Why are you keeping this odious specimen in your life at all? Why even give her another opportunity to crap all over you and your life? Life isn’t the Pain Olympics, yk? This “life isn’t perfect for anyone anyway” isn’t the issue: That’s sorta like saying, “Well, I don’t deserve to eat because there are people who are starving.” So how does that knowledge assuage your *own* hunger? It doesn’t. This kind of Black and White Thinking is a flea we all battle sooner or later. Of course you deserve a life with all the *typical kinds of challenges* all adults face, and your’s are not typical nor does one recognize a threat and then keep inviting it back. At all.

You don’t sound the least bit “terrible:” Kudos for your honesty and your hate is a normal response to a totally Hateful Relationship. I certainly relate to the complete self-sufficiency-so much so, I’ve had friends and my late husband become upset when they learned I’ve done something myself without asking them for their help. The reality is, it just never occurred to me that was even an option. Still doesn’t and imma antique.

So what has to happen to set off complete NC with this Pox upon your life? Just answer that to yourself so when it happens-I hope you are able to see it, you’re still participating in a Trauma Bond-with this nasty piece of work you’ll fold up your tent and refuse to honor Her Majestic Horribulus? Otherwise you’re not gonna recognize when it does happen, OK?

Yeah, you’re depressed. Sounds like a dysthymia type of thing where it just feels like there’s this grey cloud over your head all the time: Life is grey instead of technicolor. Certainly after decades of her crap it’s understandable, but if you’re putting your sense of personal “good enough” on hold until she dies, you’ve just handed her all your Agency for your own life. It’s like being on Parole without an Expiration Date-yet you have all you need to exculpate yourself from this blaaa life and nasty ass woman.

Best wishes, Ami. Hope you see this. Woman, I am rootin’ for ya! You can set yourself free, you hold all the keys to your life as a life well lived, not a relentless trudge and drudge your way through this huge sloppy muddy swamp.


L December 9, 2018 at 7:21 pm

Can someone please help me? Or tell me I’m not the only one who has a hard time controlling their emotions? The emotional pain and stress my mom has caused me is too much for me to handle anymore. It’s ruining my life and my relationships. My boyfriend and I have been having crazy emotional fights because I will overreact over something so little that he does and I take it so personal and go nuts. I bawl my eyes out for a whole day and wake up feeling so ashamed and awful for my behavior – And apologize over and over to him. Last night, he did something that hurt my feelings. Instead of trying to talk it out like a sane person – I went off on a rant saying awful things. I accused him of cheating and said and did all kinds of crazy things. I have apologized over and over and begged for him to forgive me, and he says he does, but I’m scared I’m ruining everything. I cannot control my emotions and cry every other day bc of my mom. She truly is an evil person and has done some horrendous unforgivable things. Prior to our argument last night she had attacked me and got in my face, so I was already upset – couple that with some wine and then boom! The fight is on with my boyfriend. I just want to stop having these meltdowns and thinking that everyone is out to get me. I have spent my whole life thinking I wasn’t good enough bc of her. It took 26 years to finally figure out who she really is. She has been revealed – and it’s really terrifying. She has destroyed our family and my dads life completely. We discovered who she really was and all the horrible things she’s done to people over the years. She portrays herself to be a successful bussiness woman, Christian, perfect mother, perfect person who’s the best dressed and best looking person in the room. She’s raised thousands of dollars for breast cancer and goes on major three day cancer walks – yet doesn’t know a single person who has had breast cancer. She’s received many awards for her work and accolades. Has everyone totally convinced she’s perfect and a good person – yet does things that are so sneaky you don’t even notice until after the fact. She always had me convinced I was this bad person who will never be good enough. Has made me out to be a bad mother and that I don’t work hard. I was a single mom going to college and working full time that graduated with a bachelors degree. Yet that was never good enough bc I didn’t minor in anything or go to law school. Has threatened to not attend my wedding if me and my boyfriend got married all bc we wanted to move closer to the city with my daughter. Has shamed me my whole life over everything and humiliated me to her friends and family. Has turned my brother against me and make him hate me. I can’t go into too much detail but you get the idea. I just always thought that it was normal or I deserved it bc of mistakes I made as a teenager, and because the perfect image she had portrayed made me believe it was all my fault. So when I found out recently some disgusting things that she’s done I couldn’t believe how much of a hypocrite she is and that her image has been all a facade. It’s been really hard on our family — the pain she has caused. My dad is completely broken and has had to go to the hospital twice recently for almost having a heart attack/stroke. Right now she’s playing the victim card as her new I image until she finds her new one,. She fake cries and has no real tears, starving herself to make her look skinny and frail, makes up pathetic stories to all her friends and family, does anything for attention and wants everyone to feel sorry for her, yet no one in her life knows the real truth or what she’s done. I have to live with her right now to save up for a house to live with my boyfriend. We want to get married but I’m terrified I’m pushing him away and scaring him because of how crazy I have been acting. I’m so humiliated and ashamed of myself. I’m so scared of losing him. I feel like an awful mother right now and become impatient with my daughter over everything. I’m scared I’m destroying my relationships and hurting the people that I love so incredibly much. I just want to stop being this crazy person. I literally look like a psycho to everyone. I’m ruining my life and hurting people. I feel so alone and in so much pain and heartache. And I have to be around this evil selfish disgusting person everyday. I’m either invisible to her or I’m being attacked or talked down to. I just can’t seem to stop overreacting and control my emotions. I’ve gone to therapy and it hasn’t really been overly helpful. I just want to stop being this way and feeling like this. I’m losing my mind and having a nervous breakdown. I feel like it’s too late and I’m losing the love of my life and causing emotional damage to my daughter.


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