Don’t Self Attack for Feelings About Your Narcissistic Mother

by Michelle Piper

‘It is awful and sad… I am 40… When will I stop being hurt and crying about my mother???’ A recent comment on the blog.

As a psychotherapist in my 40’s, I feel it in my bones when someone says on the blog or in my coaching practice, “I’m X years old and I’m still effected by my narcissistic mother. When will this ever stop?”

Your narcissistic mother can be alive or dead, vibrant or frail, in high, low or no contact and the inner child within you will still at times cry out for attention about the emotional abuse and less than nurturing behavior you experienced in her care.

That means you are alive and growing stronger, not weak.

When we feel mad, ashamed or negative about ourselves for having emotions, we are treating ourselves like our narcissistic mother treated us. As if, though human, we shouldn’t have vulnerability or needs.

Don’t make the mistake of stuffing that part of you away or berating yourself.

Instead, notice.

Give that part of yourself what you need in a moderate way.

When I fall into these self attacks, I practically hiss at myself that I’m really, really supposed to know better…15 years as a therapist, working from growing up in a trailer to earning cum laude from a top university…all that external stuff… and I can’t stop myself from feeling very sad and powerless at times.

My functional adult knows I can’t change others, that I’m supposed to meet my own needs in a moderated way within my value system that respects other’s boundaries. And I still make mistakes. So have the CEO’s, VP’s, best selling authors, and elite military I’ve treated.

So, just notice when you have feelings about your narcissistic mother. Forgive yourself for being a perfectly imperfect human being, and come back to the healthy part of yourself that can soothe the wounded part of yourself. In this way, you will heal.

It helps to have a trusted other who can catch you in this process and coach you through doing this for yourself. Choose this person carefully, and soon you are building a strong support network and these feelings become less intense.

{ 33 comments… read them below or add one }

Dawn June 4, 2013 at 11:26 pm

Excellent post! Self Compassion is what its called nowadays. You are right, we must be kind to ourselves first and formost. Thanks for this.


Anonymous June 5, 2013 at 12:32 pm

Thanks, Dawn!
Michelle P.


Sandi June 5, 2013 at 2:03 pm

Thank you for giving my sometimes-overwhelming feelings a voice. Oddly, now that I figured out my mother (and father) were narcissists it gave me a renew self image. For years I kept ghinking “This is weird and wrong.” The frustration of seeing what others seemingly couldn’t made me doubt myself constantly. Now, it’s as if a switch has flipped. When I get into the negative self talk…the kind that makes me slide down the rabbit hole of trying to make sense of what will never make sense, the automatic answer is now, “Oh that’s right. It was not you, it was them. You’re doing great.” There’s great comfort in letting go of a responsibility that was never yours to begin with.


Doreen September 18, 2017 at 11:52 am

Wow! What an awesome site. Thanks for shedding light on this painful topic and thanks to everyone who has shared their horrendous experiences.
I now believe both my parents were narcissists although my mother blamed my father for everything. Truth be told, constant power struggles often ended violently. Alcohol abuse, jealousy, learned behaviors, controlling and bullying were common practice, but I now understand my mothers part in it. She portrayed herself as the victim, but she consciously or unconsciously pushed his buttons. Her narcissistic behavior has become increasingly evident to me and I feel sorry for her. I’m ready to reduce contact. There’s an ocean between us but I’ve always been available for her video calls. Lately I’ve been ignoring them. I just don’t know what to say, how to respond. She writes ‘s there something wrong?’ Any suggestions?


Maggie June 7, 2013 at 10:07 am

Michele thank you for this, its so true, regardless of how successful we are, people don’t know at times that overcoming those obstacles is the key to success. You being a firm example of that. Thank you for sharing, I could write a book about my mother.

Although it has assisted me in knowing the difference as yourself. I remember when my father passed away. He was everything to me. I didn’t even have time to cry, I was so busy assisting my mother with the funeral, my hubby and I both did. The other three half siblings did nothing.

At the funeral, I finally broke down and cried, it just came out, I barely remember saying, he was my pride and joy! My hubby and niece ran to me to console me. Nobody had ever seen me cry like that, including myself. Heck I was never allowed too. I was always crying for nothing according to my mother.

For some reason as strong as I am, I couldn’t stand up, my legs were shaking? I reached out to my husband and said, I can’t stand up my legs are shaking. My mother was to my left side as she always positioned herself when growing up to my right or left side, so she could talk in my ear so nobody else could see or hear her to upset me.

She aggressively said, when I said, I can’t stand up to my husband. She said, OH yes you can!!! and my name, yes you can!!! She was so angry for me having feelings. It was always like that. I told her to leave me alone!! To get away from me.

As time went on I would pick her up and take her to the cemetary with me. I would stop to get flowers for my father, my aunts who are buried not far from him. One of my aunts being my favorite, she was a wonderful human being and her sister, but not like her at all.

As I would buy the flowers at one time she started getting weird again and said, you don’t have to buy flowers for everyone? I said, its my money, how dare you. We got to the cemetary this particular time and she was angry and hostile, stood over my father’s marker, actually jealous because I was putting flowers on his grave.

Then when I went to my favorite aunt she started up on me again. I told her, I will never bring you with me again. I couldn’t even grieve or find peace at whats supposed to be one of the most peaceful places to be at.

Can you imagaine? She sabotaged everything, wanted to control me every second. BUT, I also cut the ties and created the boundaries. She was so nice when she wanted to go, but once there, would act angry and hostile?

Michele, I know all about the illness. So many suffer from families who display what I referred to my mother was at one point coming to terms with it as evil.

I was always her target for her tirades, but would confront her behavior. When she died she was still angry at me. I felt nothing, I said to myself, what else is new. I expected it. No matter what I did, it was never going to be good enough. But I did it anyway. Live and let live my father would always say, he would tell her she had rabies.

And would confront her all the time as he said to her, your always on her, your always picking on her, leave her alone! Then the anger would turn on him for not defending her abuse.

Michele, it made me stronger and thank you for this blog, I have a half sister whose worse than my mother. To all of you and us out there, know that loving yourself is the greatest love of all. We all deserve to be loved and love who ever we want. Don’t ever loose sight of that.


pall July 27, 2013 at 5:51 am

Its so awful to have a mom who is not caring and loving, now my mom says she will not give my share in my paternal granddad property, I am thinking of going legal with her, but kind of feel so bad about it, never expected myself to against relationships like this,


Biret September 7, 2018 at 3:31 pm

My NM mother took all property for herself after my father died 20 years ego. I couldnt get anythng from him. I am thinking going legal with her but I dont think it is right thing to do. Also when she visted me she was saying how rich she is. She says I am not rich like her. She says she is strınger and better then me.


Maggie August 3, 2013 at 10:53 am

Pall, you empower her and she gets what she wants, control over you…Its a carrot being waved over your head; however its pathetic that she would disrespect the wishes of your patermanl grandfather. Is there a living trust? If there is and he left one, she is breaking the law by not honoring it, aka living will..

Its extortion, what does she want in return, your life? What has occured that she has threatened you with not giving you something that does not belong to her, but that you have a share in? If its in writing and a legal document, shes breaking the law.

IF there is a clause that states that if contested, all who do, or whomever, forfeits their share, are pre-deceased and disinherited, including her. How do you know you have a share? IS she the trustee for the said property? I am a trustee for my parents…Both now deceased…

So all who share a part, should have a copy of the trust, once lets say your grandfather is deceased. But think about it, what if he had not left you a share? You would have survived anyway and are. But the real reality is, we or our parents, grandparents, whomever can’t take it with us or them when we pass.

So we make decisions or they do to leave those hard worked accomplishments to who we want or they want. It violates the wishes and respect of those who pass on…Greed is the root of all evil.

You don’t have to like each other, but legal and whats in writing, if violated is breaking the law. A judge does honor a living trust or living will….So is she contesting that he is leaving you a share?

Hope this helps,


Deidra July 21, 2014 at 7:22 pm

Thank you for this post. I’m in my 40s and thanks to this website now have the language to talk about the abuse at the hands of my mother, who I now define as severely mentally ill. I’ve opted for no contact to save myself. I know very well that this decision saved my life, but I used to get over come by the disappointment and grief that bnot only was my child hood lost, but that despite wanting a better relationship it was never going to happen. I used to wake up crying, why what have I done. As I work on establishing an identity out side from the bad seed I was cast as, this happens less and less. I realize now she needed some one to demonize, to justify punishment for mostly imagined fronts . I insist on paying and learning from mistakes. But she would find a way to twist every thing with negative intent


HollyR August 21, 2014 at 12:10 pm

I am 45 and just now have found a name for what I experienced as a child and throughout my life. I’m struggling…my mom just moved closed to me…and for so many years I was able to cope…and detach…and now all sorts of memories are flooding over me…and the narcissism is stronger than ever. I have so many unfortunate stories…but the one that comes back to me the most…is how I always wanted to grow my hair long…like a princess…when I was little…and every summer my mom would force me to sit in the chair at the hairdresser and have it all cut off….really short…I would cry. I would beg her not to make me have short hair…and she was always so “delighted” with the results…even as I was crying. I started pulling all of my hair out around age 10ish…I guess it was the only way to gain some control over my own body. I’m happy to find this blog…maybe it will help me process some of this stuff…because I will never be able to process it with her. Anytime I bring up my childhood…or any type of topic regarding her behavior…she starts crying….or leaves…or accuses me of attacking her. I’ve given up on any sort of real intimate, caring relationship with her. I’m just exhausted…and I’ve recently experienced so much joy in my life…getting married…finally purchasing a dream house…and her negativity and lack of interest threatens my way of life. I refuse to continue to let it.


Anonymous August 22, 2014 at 11:04 pm

I hope to hear that these days, you keep your hair the way you want it! I grew up with a BPD mother, then because that seemed “normal” my 1st and 2nd marriages were to NPDs.
I am pleased to say that I’ve now broken free, and am spending these years to lick my wounds as it were.
The advice I wanted to offer is this: for those still living with their Narcissist (mother or otherwise) by now you know that they enjoy watching you squirm. So, don’t them them know everything about you. Keep what is dear to you a secret, then it can’t be used against you later! If my mom knew that I would be humiliated that my grandma knew that I was having sex, she would either threaten to spill the beans or actually do so in a guise of confidentiality. But if I didn’t let on that it would bother me, then she wouldn’t have the weapon to use against me.

Or, if my Ex thought that I cherished a particular piece of furniture or jewelry, I learned that later, he would “accidentally” destroy or lose the very thing I held dear. So I learned to drop decoys: I would casually mention to please be careful around (something I felt was cheap, ugly, and replacable ) then later, when turned up broken, I would PRETEND to be saddened…when actually, hahaha! He didn’t get the correct target, because I refused to let him know what any correct target was! He had no ammo. He thought he was getting to me because I acted mopey about the decoy. Ha. He was overjoyed to believe that he had upset me. I was overjoyed and relieved to know that I had successfully thrown the bully off course!

Or, if I said to either of them something like “Please don’t tell you sister this, but I don’t like it when she jokes about your dad’s ugly old car” then it would be within the hour that they had called their sister to tell her precisely what I didn’t want her to hear…just so they could gaslight, humiliate, and start drama. But, if I said in plain English “I don’t like when Sally jokes about your dad’s car” and didn’t stipulate anything, then their was a 90% chance that my comment would be bypassed.

If they think they are punishing you for whatever it was, LET them believe so. This way, you are saving yourself some hurt anger and outrage. So what if it’s a convoluted coping mechanism? The Narcissists aren’t sparing your feelings, so why shouldn’t you spare your own feelings?


teresa October 1, 2017 at 3:04 pm

So glad he is your ex|!!!!!!!!! Yes, my last ‘partner’ the worst of the lot – was the perfect text book malignant narc. A combination of ma and pa……..I still clung on to that relationship for 8 years, now I would not entertain somebody like that for 8 minutes! Going no contact with my foo. has given me the space I needed to start healing, remembering and making connections. If my mother knew I liked something, or had a natural talent for something – she did everything in her power to prevent me from doing it or having it. I loved ballet, had a natural turnout and a natural dancers build (now) – but at 6 years old my mum was told I had ‘natural’ ability – overnight the classes stopped because ‘she couldn’t afford them – but then enrolled herself onto a tap and modern dance class and went the whole 9 yards with it at an amateur level. What kind of mum WANTS to rub her kids nose in it? Well, a wicked one. That is who! Narc ex would also ‘accidently’ destroy anything I loved. – and mock my efforts at anything creative………..I will not play any kind of games with these bastards… may think you are ‘winning’ – but actually you are damaging your own decency and that is a slippery slope. Just get away and STAY AWAY …NO CONTACT.


MK January 16, 2015 at 11:51 am

Your story about your mother being obsessed with your hair is just so similar to mine. One of my most horrible memories from childhood was when during one morning before school (I was an eary teenager), when I was getting ready in front of the mirror, my mother grabbed huge scissors (used for cutting fabric) and chopped of the hair that I had tried so hard to grow long. It was my dream too to have long hair because as a child it was also always cut short.
I don’t remember what I had said that got her in this rage, but certainly it wasn’t anything that could justify what she did. Even worse, she made me go to school without even trimming the uneven hair and with my eyes puffy from crying. I felt so ashamed and shocked. But I think that also made me realize that there was something wrong with my mother- especially because she did not feel any compassion after the act (if she herself would have been immediately shocked after what she had done, then I think I would not perhaps even remember this, who knows…)… I think I also became very scared of my mother (who still seems so nice to many outsiders), but in a way it has saved me as it made me instinctively keep some distance and not reveal too much to her… but it is still a process, more than 20 years after this incident (of course many many more incidents followed and since the mother is still alive (despite her numerous illnesses for as long as I can remember), I’m expecting more drama in the future and try to arm myself with enough information for that.

However I feel more encouraged and confident after finding this page and hearing about all the stories. I was thinking that even though we may never be able to heal our wounds completely, it is worth trying to get better as much as possible, because we still have a lot to give and I hope to become strong enough to help someone who has fallen a victim to a narcissist some day in the future.


teresa October 1, 2017 at 2:47 pm

Would somebody please explain to me the obsession these mothers have about our hair – and how it must be kept short – what the hell is it about???? Denying our ‘girlhood’ and ‘femininity’ perhaps??? Or was it that she knew I wanted long hair and she got such a power kick knowing she could hack it off whenever she wanted????Golden Girl Sis was, of course, ‘allowed’ to have long hair. This wicked woman, because she is wicked in my opinion – who tried to completely ‘possess’ me and has actively worked AGAINST my best interest from the ground up -has tried to convince anyone who will listen that I was ‘born evil’ (this included my 20 year old daughter – who sat with her mouth agape as her dear old nan character slaughtered her mum. This woman married and has lied and covered up for her sexual predator husband……..(kids)…..I have also been ordered to lie and cover up for him – until I told the truth and the poo hit the fan. I have no family of origin now – but realise I never really did. Best wishes to everyone………..


Ravyn November 9, 2018 at 7:27 pm

Chills… & Thank You. I think we are from different countries, yet we speak the same universal language… Betrayal Trauma: Pain. You translated a serious emotion I couldn’t speak.


Maria January 28, 2015 at 3:35 pm

“I guess it was the only way to gain some control over my own body. I’m happy to find this blog…maybe it will help me process some of this stuff…because I will never be able to process it with her. Anytime I bring up my childhood…or any type of topic regarding her behavior…she starts crying….or leaves…or accuses me of attacking her. I’ve given up on any sort of real intimate, caring relationship with her. I’m just exhausted…and I’ve recently experienced so much joy in my life…getting married…finally purchasing a dream house…and her negativity and lack of interest threatens my way of life. I refuse to continue to let it.”

YES…..God i started crying when I read this part….it reminds me of me having bulimia and punching myself in the stomach and hitting myself with a brush when I self-shamed. Therapy helped me to come to better terms with the fact my mother is a narcissist.

I also refuse to let this continue, if I do not mother myself and care for myself, nobody does. Growing up my mother would often just cry when I asked her to talk about something she did, that upset me or that I did not understand. Or she would storm off crying and complaining about me acting ‘like a princess for who nothing was ever good enough’, and she would then double punch me by saying things like “because of YOU I am having an existential crisis.” Or she would use emails I had sent her, in which I opened up, and underline every sentence. Then make me come to her computer, and reply to each and every single one, denying all claims, shifting the blame to me and only resting HER case after I had apologized for daring to be so unthankful.
My mother also knew we had one photograph I HATED from when I was 8 or so. It was the ONLY photograph she ever hung up, made 28464535 copies off, and rubbed into my face and said it ‘is something to show on your wedding day.”

It took me until I was 30 to understand what was going on, and really understand it was never my fault. It will be a lifelong healing journey, but even one year of therapy already helped me so much.


sue July 7, 2015 at 5:04 pm

Dear Holly, yeah what is with these sorts of muthas – their insisting on short hair. As a child, i wanted to look and dress like a girl – (uhm, i am a girl, was born that way 😉 and would get shot down for it, and my hair butched.


ONLY DAUGHTER August 19, 2016 at 7:05 am

YES!!! I was also forced to have a short pixie cut and my heart would break when I’d look at myself in the mirror. It made me feel so ugly. So cruel. I hope all these sick, pathetic bullies go to hell.


teresa June 13, 2017 at 11:34 am

Yes – me too with the hair!!!!! My sister was allowed to grow her hair long – I never was – the reason was “your hair is too thin – I have to keep cutting it to thicken it up.”

In the 17 years I lived at home – she took me to the hairdressers once – “Cut it short” she said – I was eleven.

She also physically attacked me the first time I shaved my legs. I was 14. Screaming, and slapping me every where – I felt that I had made a move into young womanhood – her reaction to it was insane.


teresa June 13, 2017 at 11:36 am

a continuation from the above – the rest of the time SHE cut my hair – I can relate to the wonky fringe and chopped look.x

teresa October 1, 2017 at 3:28 pm

Competition. You did not realise it but even as a small girl your mother was in competition with you – her beloved daughter!!! They see us as ‘rivals’ and the assaults on my person became worse as I became a young woman. God,she hated it. She is 81 now, old, sagging and wrinkled. I expect to be the same when I am 81, and am not bothered by it -I see the aging of the body as a natural thing, and apart from eating well and taking regular exercise will embrace aging. She, on the other hand cannot embrace it – so she verbally denigrates and insults the young, the pretty, the good-looking mature woman she sees on the bus…..her hatred of ‘other women’ is pathological. I was regularly accused of vanity. And constantly told ‘that vanity is a sin’……..oh sod off you stupid old bat – so is pride……….(She doesn’t get it, of course). I really would have more fun smashing myself in the face with a house-brick than spending time with that soul-stealing harpy) Much MUCH easier just to STAY AWY.


Amber April 15, 2018 at 6:23 am

Yes. Competition is exactly the word. My younger sister was allowed to grow her hair very long, but mine was always kept cut short because she said, “it’s too thin and stringy and you never do anything with it”. But she wouldn’t teach me how to! Also from the time I was a pre-teen she has made me go on diets with her time and time again. She said it’d be fun and we could see who could lose the most weight. It completely destroyed my metabolism and now I actually AM overweight!! I was always hungry and miserable watching everyone else get to eat ice-cream while I wasn’t allowed to because I was “on a diet”. Finally she figured out that I was sneaking snacks. For the next diet she wrote out a vow to God that I would stick with it and not cheat and had me sign at the bottom.
By my late teens to early twenties I was heavier than she was. She’s thrilled about that. She still asks me what I weigh. Well I’m not going along with it anymore.
At the time I never saw anything wrong with these things: I thought she was really trying to help me but just didn’t understand how I felt. I thought I was the problem for not being able to stick to the endless cycle of diets. But now it’s becoming increasingly clear to me just how abnormal that type of thing is. She was using me a measuring stick for her own progress and damaging my health!

I was also used as her psychiatrist and marriage counsellor. I read all her books on marriage (which she never bothered to do) and spent hours counselling her and working as a go-between for her and dad. What kind of person uses their 13 year old daughter for that?!

I’m so glad to have found this site and to finally have a name for what’s been going on. Thanks to everyone for their testimonies and encouragement.


Teresa December 30, 2014 at 10:57 am

I’m 62 and my mother is 85. A couple of years ago I found out what was wrong with her. The insults, the screaming, the backstabbing , the humiliation my sister
and I had to go through was “normal” for us. It was so liberating to find out about NM. She screamed at me everyday telling me I was crazy, now I know it is her. She has manipulated and divided my sister and I. My sister became an alcoholic and divorced. Since our mother adored her daughter, my sister mistreated her to the point my niece left to live with her father and his new wife. Sadly, it was her way of getting even with our mother. We have been subjected to so much slander, her neighbors think we are such bad people. As for me, my kids could kick me and spit on me and I would not care since I want to be the exact opposite of her. But thank God they love me very much. My husband knows exactly how she is and supports me, which is great . I am still trying to recover from so much abuse. For The Lord everything is possible.


Annmarie February 4, 2015 at 7:34 pm

Delighted to find this site. I remember when I was 7 and told my mother I knew she hated me and loved my baby brother more. I knew she was messed up when I was 4. At 49, and a year and a half after my dad died, I said I was done with her. I haven’t seen my brother and his family in 2 years. He married a woman just like my mother. My little sister is a mess. Strange, she’s both narcissistic and terribly abusive to herself. Haven’t seen her in over a year.

I meditate. I talk openly to others about what I have been through. I have been in therapy on and off for a decade. I divorced my mother and shortly after my therapist said I no longer needed to come. I purposely make sure to treat myself wonderfully and I come first. Massages, sleeps, good food, meditation, saying no, traveling. It’s finally and about me and self care.


JK May 17, 2015 at 4:42 pm

Am so glad I found this site. I went NC with my NM 10 years ago when I was 41 – before realising what was going on – it was just such an intolerable situation I just walked out after visiting her one day and never went back. It was a few years later when she was still trying to manipulate me into getting back in touch that I came across info on the web about Narcissism and it was such a relief to realise I wasn’t alone and that it wasn’t just something wrong with me. I stuck to my guns apart from replying to a few texts saying I wished her well, bore no grudges but wanted to lead a separate life. I thought I had dealt with it although still felt a huge amount of guilt and due to living only 5 mins walk away from her, had to be careful to avoid certain places for fear of bumping into her (so she was still controlling me to an extent). Then this weekend was the funeral of my friends dad and I felt like I should go to support my friend but knew there was a high chance my NM would be there as they were connected through church friends. I saw her as soon as I arrived and just couldn’t go through with it. I managed to speak to my friend who totally understood but when I got back to work I had a complete breakdown. I couldn’t stop crying and all the old feelings came flooding in of being manipulated and I felt as desperate and worthless as I had all those years ago since I was about 7 yrs old. Another friend of mine helped me to process what was going on and made me see that having such an extreme physical reaction to seeing her was a sign of how unhealthy the relationship had been and was my body’s way of saying NO! Don’t go back into that situation! I think I needed to go through that now in retrospect as I think for the first time in 10 years I feel a lot less guilt over my decision not to see her and I realise fully now that her behaviour was actually a form of abuse – emotional abuse – and I am not responsible for that. But I am responsible for my future sanity and mental health so I am more sure now that there is no going back and giving her another chance despite other family members thinking I am just being awkward and selfish and stubborn. So I am grateful for this weekends emotional trauma as it has proved to be another step in the healing process! Hearing other people’s experiences on this site helps too so thank you everyone!


Scapegoatdaughter December 26, 2015 at 11:17 am

I too feel my GC and LC sisters think i am selfish because I can’t bear to pick up the phone to talk to her. I have to gear myself up to do, and have the right positive energy to deal with the sound of her voice and her never ending egocentric chatter about how marvelous she is. She praises my GC sister to the skies but hardly mentions my LC, who has spent hours doing my NM’s bills and accounts for her. In fact ,she tries to sabotage my LC’s accounting, and when my LC remonstrates (mildly) my NM accuses her of being bullying! Now my LC has been in a relationship with a guy who has delusional jealousy syndrome, and believes the worst of her. This must be a direct result of being undermined constantly by her NM. I took off out this whole mess when I was 21, and put 6000 miles between me and the NM. But now she’s 92, she needs me to call her more often. Unbearable.


ONLY DAUGHTER August 19, 2016 at 7:17 am

Scapegoatdaughter, Unbearable is right. It’s a common complaint that children of NM despise having to talk on the phone with them. I’m the only child of an elderly NM and am also forced to occasionally call her and it literally makes me ill. When I see her name on caller ID I spew 4 letter words at the phone before I answer and of course sometimes I just don’t answer. But she’s old and sickly and I can’t go NC. Of course it’s tough on you because you then have recriminations from your sisters. Is there any way you can form some type of supportive alliance with your LC sister?


SM December 28, 2016 at 12:51 am

I am 53 and for as long as I can remember I have never been of any worth to my mum. Despite this I loved her and spent most of my life trying to ensure she wanted for nothing. She has a hierarchy of affection for her siblings but I always felt last in line. My eldest brother could do no wrong and still remains the favourite. I am very different to the rest of my family and have a totally different outlook. Two of my sisters are more like mum so she is closer to them. My eldest sister sees what mum is really like and can see how she treats me. I was always compared to my dad who my mum hates with as passion and I’m the one who always brings up the past. After a recent family holiday (my husband and i paid for my mum to go) she ostracised my husband and I for the entire final week because he stood up for me against my ‘goldenchild’ brother. My husband told my mum that my brother was a disgrace for speaking to me in a desrespectful way during a minor spat. On returning home i tried to sort it out with her but she hung up the phone on me. I wrote to her trying to get her to understand how i had been feeling all these years, i truly poured out my heart. She wrote back saying some horrific things to me, including:I had no love in me, my siblings hate me, my neices and nephews don’t like me because I don’t care about them, that my children would amount to nothing, that i only gave her things and supported her financially so i could manipulate he against my siblings, I could go on. I was heartbroken. It’s now nearly 5 months since the holiday and she has sought to turn my whole family against us. My husband is so angry about it, he truly hates her now. I spend moments paralysed with grief and sadness. I dont know why she is like this to just me. Apparently she wants me to apologise to her for my husbands actions. She wants me to yeild and only then will she let me back into the family. The thing is, I won’t, because neither my husband or I have done anything wrong. During this 5 month period my house was burgled and not one of my siblings or my mother contacted me to support my family during that traumatic time. She tried to manipulate my children, criticising me to them when they both happened to call her. Christmas has come and gone now and I couldn’t go there, I don’t feel welcome in that house anymore, its hostile. As a result of all this my relationship with my husband is suffering as he wants me to cut all ties but its hard because I am only truly recognizing now what a skilled job she has done on me but on my siblings too. I am the scapegoat because I have always tried to fight back and not simply be who she wants me to be. How can I find peace with this?


Susan December 29, 2016 at 1:38 pm

SM the first paragraph of your post is my life for word. I just spent the evening post Christmas party sobbing my heart out. My NM told everyone there that I was not speaking to her but had no idea why. She quizzed my daughter, my husband and sent my aunt over to bully me in to being nice. Well I am nice. Everyone else says so. I am not difficult, ungrateful, or a failure. Peace may never come but staying far enough away to keep our sanity in tact is a step in the right direction. Luckily for me my NM cares so little that unless in public she makes no effort to learn why I wont interact with her. Best of luck. Hold on and keep looking after you.
SM as well


TheOnlyOneInMyFamilyGettingIt February 17, 2017 at 8:39 am

I am SO thankful to have been blessed to find this website. I am close to 50 years old and am slowly, yet progressively, growing and healing from my NM abuse and cruelty for the past 3 years. I have been surviving much longer. Thanks to all who have shared their vulnerable experiences and heartbreaking stories. I, for once, do not feel alone and all by myself. This aloneness has plagued me my whole life and has been an immense burden to carry. I am currently imposing my second ‘no contact’ (since January 2017), which provides relief from the “crazy” bs while simultaneously causing guilt (the perfect dichotomy only a NM can cause). I have a situation I am hoping others have/do experience and can shed some light: I am hyper-vigilant in noticing other narcissists (co-worker, husband’s ex-wife, etc) and have a difficult time processing and handling their “crazy” narcissistic behavior. Am I the problem or are they? I honestly feel intense anger when encountering them. Their manipulations, self-seeking and passive-aggressive tactics are not lost on me. So, I am guessing my deep, intense hurt, which shows on the surface as anger (from all that my NM visited on me throughout my life) is probably the culprit. As so many have asked, when will true peace come? And, is it achievable?


Annette June 11, 2017 at 6:33 am

My NM got pregnant so that my father (who I also suspect was N) would marry her…the MINUTE they were married, she no longer had any use for me. I was hated before I was even born. I spent about 28 years trying to figure out what I did that was so wrong. I just turned 55, and have been NC for the most part for 20 years. Still hurts, though…


Philippa May 26, 2018 at 6:55 am

My NM mother passed two years ago. I thought that would be that. Instead, she is always on my mind. I hear her voice scolding me most of all (although she doled out praise as well.) There was a particular article of clothing she gave to me. When I wore it in bed, the time I stayed at hers, she noticed and got mad at me..I was in my sixties, she was in her 90s at the time. She even managed to find the strength to scold my grammar while on her death bed. I have a PhD. Yet at the same time she talked about how ‘beautiful ‘ I was and that she loved me. Now when I wear the top she gave me, which I only wear in bed, I hear the exact words she said. Should I get rid of it? At the same time, it reminds me of her now she has passed. I suppose I should go into therapy, but will that really help?


Paul February 6, 2019 at 10:04 pm


I do feel for you, yes please, my advise is to get rid of that top, if this brings bad memories. Yes therapy does help, it helps you to live the experiences which missed out, you come to terms with things. Even if you don’t find good therapist first time, try another,where you feel comfortable.
It’s your own thoughts and feelings are which bothers you,but when you come to know the reality, it helps to settle things, it’s all about come to terms with things.


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