Narcissistic Mothers

by Michelle Piper

Let’s talk about narcissistic mothers and the silent treatment. This mom and the narcissistic mother-in-law share many forms of emotionally abusive ammo in their arsenals.

One way these narcissists seek to gain power and control over you is to give you the silent treatment when you do not respond to her in the ways she would prefer you to. She completely ignores you out of contempt or disapproval for something you have done, which probably wasn’t even a bad thing, just not something she wanted you to do.

Having a narcissistic parent or narcissistic mother-in-law, you know she can be rather extreme in her punishments. When giving you the silent treatment, she may refuse to speak to you or even acknowledge you for a considerable amount of time.

Days, weeks, months, or maybe even years may pass while she punishes you. Unless you are the one to apologize, she may never stop.

As you know, she won’t be the one to apologize to you for anything, as she believes that she can do no wrong and therefore has nothing to be sorry about.

By treating you this way, she demands an apology from you in an emotionally abusive way. It allows her to further inflate her view of herself.

A narcissistic mother is offended that not all people around her will defer to her and give her the attention she desperately craves. So she punishes them, and makes you feel as if you are nothing is just about as harsh as it can get without actually being physical.

This passive-aggressive form of emotional abuse is a common tactic for many narcissistic parents. Her nonverbal actions and gestures are her way of showing you she is displeased or disapproving of something you have done that doesn’t fit into her M.O. She has no real emotional regulation and knows how to make you feel unvalued and unimportant, in her eyes at least.

When mostly healthy minded people give others the silent treatment, it is usually resolved or blown over in a few moments, maybe hours, ideally after saying they need a break from the topic and mutually agreeing when to talk about it again.

Non-narcissists know shunning someone is not the way to resolve issues. It is abusive and cruel to perform such an act for an extended amount of time.

A narcissistic mother does not see it in the same way others do. All she wants is to get her way no matter what the cost is to others.

Sometimes, the only thing you can do when you have a narcissistic mother or narcissistic mother-in-law is accept the fact that she isn’t going to change, and then move on. Many readers of this blog have expressed their eventual ability to emotionally detach if not physically remove themselves from a narcissist mom’s or narcissistic mother-in-law’s tactics.

If she wants to treat you with such disrespect by blatantly ignoring you and pretending you don’t exist, then maybe you need to let that happen. If you are the one who constantly has to apologize for things you may or may not have done, it can be exhausting. You do not have to walk around on pins and needles with her, always in fear of stepping out of line.

{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

Catherine October 29, 2012 at 9:52 am

Being a daughter of a Narcissistic mother and a narcissistic sister who have both used this (silent treatment) on me for years, I know the game they play quite well. What they do is hang up on me if they don’t like something I say which of course they don’t agree with, Hanging up on me and then ignoring me is a what they both have chosen to do many times. Last week my mother called to say, lets wipe the slate clean and start over, as soon as I brought up something that was calling her on her behavior of me she again, hung up on me. I did tell her that I don’t think having a relationship with someone that does these type of things is much of a relationship. I’m not willing to keep putting myself in harms way. Her behavior has been very hurtful to me in my life, and when I explained to her that I feel bad when she stops talking to me and doesn’t listen to what I feel and have to say, it makes me feel un -valued by her. Her only response was, well, Ive been hurt by you. Then she denies things that she has done or said (Gaslighting) She pits siblings against each other( mainly me) and has even said things that are not true to my son, and daughter to try to get them to turn against me. When I cal her on it, she denies it, she says she is being unjustly accused and attacked. Then she hangs up on me. My sister has done the same thing but every couple years decides she wants me in her life, I tried it and when I say something that is honest or true,that she can’t deal with, she says, “Really, why do you have to be so honest”. I am not going back to this again with either one. There are to many things, betrayals, lies, gaslighting. burying their heads in the sand and dismissals to even count. I’m not wasting one more minute walking on egg shells around these people. I am the truth teller in the family. The one who speaks up for what is fair and just and true. I was scapegoated as a kid, but as an adult I believe I am the lucky one. I have a mind of my own and don’t need “mommy’s” approval to know that I am a good person, who deserves to be happy and peaceful. With them in my life it is never the case. I will no longer be used, dismissed, egnored, lied to or disrespected. There is a great freedom that comes with this. Although I wish things were different, this is who they are, and nothing I do or say is going to change that. I weigh out in my mind and heart, which will feel less upsetting and hurtful to me, to have people like this in my life, or not. I always come back to the life that is more peaceful, honest, and true to who I am. I know I have come through this with my mind still intact and my self respect. With these experiences behind me, I am free to be the person I was born to be. Fully intact with empathy for others and myself. I am able to be a better mother to my children and a better grandmother to my grandchildren because of this. I hope that you that are still struggeling with the decision to go back to the abuse and toxicity, or to stand up for who you are can find the strength to know that you are worthy of love, and acceptance from all that you have in your life. If you can not get that from “Family” you can get that from yourself first, and then you will attract those people into your life who will love you for who you are. I have been through this for many years, it is a slow, growing process. When you reach a point in your life when you know, it just doesn’t feel right to be around this, no matter who it is, know that you are turning the corner to greater strength and resolve for your own best interest. You see, being raised by Narcissists, it was ingrained in us at the earliest of age, that our feelings don’t count, that we were to always make “mommy” happy over our own happieness. This is the reason it is so hard for us to come to the decision to be happy without the abusive person in our lives without feeling guilty. Pleas know that you are not alone in this struggle, And that you deserve to be Loved. Peace, Catherine


Michelle Piper October 29, 2012 at 6:00 pm

Thank you, Catherine, for sharing your story.

Each unique detail shared seems to help more adult children of narcissistic parents on their journey away from negative treatment from others. Your statement, “When you reach a point in your life when you know, it just doesn’t feel right to be around this, no matter who it is, know that you are turning the corner to greater strength…” is very much appreciated.


Tanya October 3, 2013 at 8:21 pm

I have to say that while I was reading your story, I had developed a smile on my face because of the strength I read coming from you. You learned, you had enough and you found your inner child and nurtured it and let go of all the hurtful people that were in your life. You are strong and have recognized so much of where you were and where you are now…at a much better place. Your story has helped me so much since I am now where you are…I finally had enough at the age of 53. I can look back at all the madness my whole life, and the mental abuse, and the hang ups and long spells of being mad at me because I did not do something to her liking, or the apology that I would never get from her, yet always waited. Thank you for your story.


Kzee August 19, 2015 at 2:59 am

This is almost identical to my experience, except I didn’t escape soon enough… It took my Mother turning my son against me (brainwashing) for me to see the light… My Mother and Sister both collude with each other… Now my beautiful Son has ‘chosen’ to live with her and claims he hates me. The emotional pain is beyond… The grief is crazy-making. I am trying to get on with my life and know that I will never go back there… but my Son… I email him to let him know I love him and I’m here, he never responds… maybe one day…


Brenda May 10, 2018 at 6:45 am

Thank you so much for your post. I can relate totally. It’s good knowing that I’m not alone in all this nonesense.
God Bless!


Debi November 13, 2012 at 10:07 am

My mother (80) still uses the method of ‘throwing me away’ when I question anything she does, disagree with her or choose to speak up about her ranting and raving at me (I put the phone down and can hear her going on and on about something I’ve supposedly done to offend her) – her response is, ‘Well it’s going to be a LONG time til I want to speak to you again!” And I (51, can you believe it??) keep apologizing, calling her back after she’s hung up on me numerous times, begging her to forgive me and not throw me away. She makes up scenarios in her head, stews and it builds, over something I’ve either done that NORMAL adults would discuss, especially mother and daughter who are supposed to love each other. She tells my only relative, her brother, how awful I am, lists all my faults and discretions to him because, “I have to have SOMEONE to talk to about you and your behavior, Debi”. She’s a master at shaming me and blaming me and never taking any responsibility for her actions. Threatening suicide is her only response when she acknowledges on rare occasions that she’s hurt me.


Michelle Piper November 16, 2012 at 6:16 pm

Hi Debi,
I hope people start talking more about the elderly narcissistic mother because it can feel as if you are getting sucked back into the old narcissistic system all over again when she figures out that your healthy empathy and compassion for an aging human being can be used to manipulate. I’ll also put it on the list to do a post about boundaries in that situation.
Best of luck to you,


Wendy M December 8, 2012 at 4:11 pm

I write this with great sadness and frustration.
I have been with my partner for 5 years now, and for 4 of those years I have been on the end of some very strange and at times out right nasty behaviour.
My MIL the narcissist started off being the perfect Mother as far as i could see, I was treated (and groomed as I now realise) like I was so special and that this perfect family could not have been happier to have me as part of their lives.
Of course this didn’t last long, as soon as her orders and needs were not met I was very quickly disowned from the family and over the years my partner has pushed and pushed for apologies from her for her disgusting words and lies but of course she doesn’t apologise this is common knowledge in the family “Ohhh Gail never apologises haha” i personally don’t find that funny, but worrying.
Recently things have got unbearable, I have to witness the disgusting emails, phone calls and texts she send my partner putting him and myself down, she manipulates every single bit of contact she has with him (which has been less and less)
When she can’t get her way or a response from him, she starts on me. She knows I am caring and sensitive and knows by picking on me it will upset me and trigger a reaction from him. She doesn’t care whether she gets good attention or bad attention, she just wants attention and normally at my expense.
She started turning up uninvited round our house when he was working away and I learn’t very quickly not to open the door to her as she just belittles me when no ones around but sugar coats it. It hurts, so she was politely told by my partner to ring before coming …. (which she thought was ridiculous and i quote “in our family we don’t do it like that, Wendy and her family are just odd” was her response,) but literally the next day, there she is knocking on my door, proving she won’t be told by anyone, then complains to his brother and sister in law I am lazy and in bed because I am not answering the door.
After years of trying to talk to her about her behaviour (I could go on and on and on about things she has done) and keep some relationship going he has been forced to tell her respect his wishes or he won’t have contact, which was very quickly followed up by her attacking me telling me I was trying to stop him from having contact with the family (we see other members on the quiet to avoid more of her games) I am her scapegoat to why her son wants nothing to do with her. My sister in law (who puts up with her behaviour due to her husband being “good mummys boy” who refuses to see any bad in his mum) opened up finally for the first time in the 5 years after she could see how bad things had got for us, she says MIL is merely using me as a tool to get to her son. Who does that i ask myself, I am a good person and all i have ever done is shown love to their family, I am just fed up of being so hurt by her treatment of me and my partner. He is a wonderful man who over the years has been manipulated and disowned more times than i can count, but the final insult was a few months ago when she was texting myself and him referring to me as “the bitch” and how I had got my way and she wouldn’t talk to him anymore ever again and for him to “have a good life son, i wont be hurt by you anymore”
She has over stepped the mark now, we are trying to start a family and she is well aware we have serious medical problems with this and hes told her we need support not this kind of behaviour but that seems to have made it worse, the attention isn’t on her so she doesn’t care to the point of disowning her own son. He has told her he wants no contact with her for the foreseeable future. But recently she has been messaging him again trying to start up this game, she sent a xmas card addressed to only him with no message inside. It breaks my heart but i really think there is no good to come from keep trying to hope this woman will change or start to take responsibility for her actions. I wish there were another way but i fear our lives will only be one long negative experience if she has her way.

Thank you for taking the time to read this x


Michelle Piper December 9, 2012 at 7:45 pm

Dear Wendy,
You’re likely correct in doubting your narcissistic mother-in-law will change. Her hurtful action of sending “a xmas card addressed to only him with no message inside” is yet another example of how narcissistic mothers try to isolate and split their child from those that threaten her sense of control. Thank you for visiting the blog, hopefully the material and the member’s stories will be of some support to you.


Lyn August 19, 2013 at 7:40 am

It has taken me nearly 48 years to realize my mother is a narcissist and thus the cause of many of my issues. This past week has been a very difficult week (not only issues amongst my narcissist mother and I , but more importantly very major issues amongst my “golden child” now narcissistic brother threatening my son’s life). These two separate, yet connected issues brought me to the internet for research. I’ve known for years that things were not right, but I could never figure out why things always played out the way they did. I’m so relieved that I was able to recognize my mother’s and brothers narcissism. So many, many, many things now make sense and I wish I had recognized this many years earlier. I am currently in a position in which I’m trying to decide if I will continue to have contact with my mother. She has given me the silent treatment for the last week because I finally stood up to her. I was not nasty in the way I handled the situation, but I surprised myself in how angry, loud I became. Still, I did not say anything I am regretting one week later. So, I will not allow her to make me feel guilty this time.

Thank you Ms. Piper, for this site and your articles… even though I just found your site within the last week, your articles, as well as the replies from others are helping me realize I’m not the problem here. In addition, they are helping me realize the traits that I have taken on due to the way I was treated by my mother… the traits that I will do my best to lose.

It is very, very helpful to know that I’m not the only one from such a situation and that I’m not crazy for feeling the way I do. So much of my past is now making complete sense, thus helping me tremendously! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!


Barbara Dothan Alabama December 23, 2013 at 11:57 am

My mom always totally ignored me and shut me out of the family functions and holidays, I never knew if I was invited or not and she would always tell people that she had invited me , called me, but in reality she would never issue the invitation at all. Then of course she would tell people that I was too good or too busy to come to her little get together. She would totally ignore my birthday, there was never ever any type of party. My birthday is a few days after xmas and she would always say everyone was tired of parties then. She would always throw a big party of my two older golden child brothers. I see now that I was always treated like a nobody and unwanted and unwelcome. I took the test and scored 105 out of 105. I feel like I have been slapped. I always wondered why I gave so much in relationships and never get anything back. I wondered why I could not make friends and am so afraid they might see the sorry soul that I am that I sabatoge any attempt at friendship. I remember now how she could not be bothered to attend my school functions or celebrate in any way, I remember how my favorite dolls and collections would disappear. I remember all the jealousy from her about my relationship with my dad, her main goal in life was to turn my dad against me. The thoughts are flooding in and the memories are so painful. I remember how she could not be bothered to be there for me while I gave birth to my only daughter, nor did she ever even call and see if I needed help returning home or in helping me with my baby. I see now this is so not normal and I don’t know of any other mother that does this. Usually Mothers take time from work and help their daughter with the new baby. When she shut me out of my dads death and funeral I went NC with her , I will never forget that smile/smirk when she saw how painful this was for me. It truly brought her pleasure. I get a card about once a year , but no real effort on her part. It has been seven years since we saw each other and I don’t even plan to go to her funeral, she is dead to me already. I thank God that I do not treat my daughter this way and I know deep in my heart that I would never ever cause her hurt like my mom did to me. I guess I was blessed to have only now found out what was really happening and I am trying to change the way I feel now. My biggest regret is I let her come between my dad and I. I regret not being able to show him affection and love like any normal daughter could . My mother would just do a slow simmer when she saw any interaction between us. I hate her for that.


Michelle Piper December 24, 2013 at 1:05 pm

Hi Barbara,

Thank you for your comments on the site. Your regret about your dad is a common one. As a child, your mother exploited her power as an adult to dominate the family relationships and hurt your relationship with you and your father. When you were a child, I wish your dad–as the other adult in the family– had been more protective of you and provided safe times for you to show your normal affection to him and he to you.

As you give your daughter the space and protection to show normal affection to people other than you, you are already breaking that painful pattern. So, when the regret about dad flares up, honor the fact that you have had the strength to break that pattern, and that ultimately honors your love for your father.


Cat August 15, 2015 at 5:46 am

I finally really stood up to my mother this year when she managed to ruin my second birthday in a row. It was over something I didn’t do about a flea infestation that she thought I should have done. She took it as a personal affront that I didn’t take her golden advice (which it turns out would not have worked in this situation anyway and didn’t when I applied it later.)

She proceeded to rage at me on the phone about how I NEVER listen to her (not true) and wanted to argue. I found myself saying, “I thought I had it under control when I left to come visit.” Her (sounding like a witch): “But ou DIDN”T have it under control DID you?”
The she barely wished me a happy birthday.

After so many of these mini-rages, I’ve had enough. I have asked her several times to quit yelling at me over nothing and nothing has ever changed.

I called her back to ask her to please wish me a happy birthday in a normal way ( I was so mad about last year’s antics and I probably shoudl not have called.) I am sure I had a certain “tone” of voice that I am not allowed to have, but she accused me of calling her up to “ream” her and started yelling all over again. I hung up on her. When she called two days later, we had it out. Of course this turned into me being the awful daughter who is hurting her mother when I told her I don’t feel she has any respect for me and is abusing me verbally and emotionally, and is over-controlling and always on me about what I need to do in my life.

I am way too old for this. I have needed her help as I have disabilities I deal with so I feel I have had to put up with this for a long time. All I asked for is to quit yelling at me and nagging me all the time – that I was tired of feeling fear when the phone rings, etc..

So this has now been met with a complete backing off on her end. She has to swing to the extreme. She told me to call her when I want to and so I finally did two days ago. Got no call back. I am getting the silent treatment. I know nothing is wrong with her because she is still handling things related to my online business that she insisted on taking over while I was in the middle of a big move.

It just hurts. I am the bad guy no matter what. I admit as well that I have my own emotional dysregulation problems that come out only with her and her harshness and criticisms towards me. So if I have any feelings about how she talks to me or the yelling, I am considered mean, which makes me turn into a yelling, raging person myself at times because I have stuffed so much anger over all this for my entire life – all the abuses – physical and mental.

However, I have always apologized and tried to make things right. But there is no talking to someone like this. So now things are really in a bad place because I fully stood up to her this time and told her these incidents were starting to make affect my physical health as well.

The sad thing is is my financial reliance on her to some degree and I just feel my life keeps getting worse and worse as I get older. But I am going to work to live more simply and get myself out of relying on her in certain ways, even if it means I die broke, old, and alone on disability. (Yes, I am on disability for having many things wrong with me and I do hold her responsible for much of how I turned out.) But I do the best I can and maybe this will force me to heal faster and find a new way to live that makes things better for me in the long run.

I have always had survival anxieties and I see this is specifically tied to having a mother with a personality disorder and growing with an ignoring alcoholic father who was self-absorbed.


Mortega December 5, 2015 at 5:48 pm

Dirty Laundry:
When dirty laundry piles up, because your busy working and living life, there comes a point that one can not take it anymore. Eventually one commits to spending the whole day washing clothes to get rid of that uneasy stress of having dirty clothes! That is how I respond to the self-righteous behavior of my mother. I accept she is in denial and could use some new strategies to deal with her need to control and have it her way. Sad to say she is like dirty laundry. I can’t buy new clothes but I can take care and wash the old ones, which i allow to pile up for a long time. LOL! Ok, on a serious note I spent my youth always apologizing and doing exactly what she wanted. It only fixed things for a short period because, she would find something else i did wrong that required i was ignored for days and weeks. Now, as an adult the same thing occurs but, i refused to give into her ways so i get ignored for months. Strange she has gotten worse and more stubborn over small things like washing dishes. When i don’t do the dishes when she wants them done… supposedly i don’t care or respect her. So, I get ignored for 2-4 months. My response stay calm and keep talking like she is a blind person. She can hear me but can’t see me. Lol! Hey, ladies thanks for the stories and information. I just recently discovered that i am not the narcissist. Wow, I am so happy over my new knowledge that i feel empowered yet sad for my mom! Damn, i hope she get help some day!
Daughter of Dirty Laundry


Grace of the Southern Sun May 18, 2016 at 10:23 pm

I appreciate reading others stories about their narcissistic mother’s and other family members. It has been approximately 1.5 years since I discovered the truth about my mother, myself, my family. I have done a lot of research to understand the intricate weave of deceit, lies, sabotage, demoralizing, shaming etc… that narcissists seem to universally use. I am astounded that the patterns of abuse are so similar. Do these people come in with a NPD user manual downloaded into their being or what? The similar patterns of behavior are dumbfounding. As the scapegoated daughter of a N mother with a GC sister who has many NPD characteristics and was groomed to believe my mother’s lies about me, I know all too well the deep pain, the self doubt, the isolation, the ostracizing, the gas lighting, the stonewalling, triangulation, the lies that are the N way of being. My mother began calling me a slut when I was 12. She told me a friend of hers saw me making out with a boy at a gas station and then shamed, humiliated and grounded me. I cried and cried telling her it was not true, she called me a liar. That was the first of many groundings and punishments to come for things I did not do. That was the first of a long list of shaming events and accusing me of being a slut. I got the silent treatment all the time. It is for the same reason many have shared here–not agreeing with my mother, asking a question she does not want to answer, saying something in public she does not want others to know, telling the truth or being kind to someone she does not like. I would also get the death stare, the stone cold faced look that would say don’t you dare……. I was and am still, a kind, warmhearted, hard working, trustworthy, sensitive and caring person. My mother tried to obliterate me again and again in my life. I will not go into all the stories, there are many times I walked away from her, from my home absolutely gutted, swearing I would never again return. The last time was the worst, she set me up for an argument the day before a very special ceremony in which I was to be ordained, she was supposed to come, she picked a fight with me on the phone and when I stuck up for myself she yelled at me that she was “not going to do this with me”, her famous line which means I will not discuss this unless you agree with me, then she said “and I am not coming to your ceremony either” and hung up. I was gutted. A torrent of anger rose from me and I called her back screaming a lot of things into her answering machine which, though were said in an angry tone, were all true things I knew about my mother but never said before. They came rolling out like thunder. I think that touching on the truth so closely really upset/threatened her and that is when the major smear campaign began. She got to everyone, even my outcast brother to turned on me. This was a major heartache for me as she kicked out at 16 and he went onto become a drug addict and ended up in and out of prison for decades. I was the only family member to stand by and help him, again, and again, and again…. She severed that relationship, she did it, she did it good. Everyone turned on me and it became clear to me they thought I was crazy. She even said to me, “so we are all wrong and you are right?”. It was awful, I had just come through several exceedingly difficult challenges, my family knew about all of it, this was her kicking me when I was down, big time! So years down the road now……..I moved out of the country, literally half the world away. I did a gratuitous goodbye trip to my sister and mother (my brother does not speak to me still since my mother’s lies to him about me, it’s been 5 years). I went n/c with my GC sister just over a year ago. I have to say it feels so good not to have to tolerate her awful arrogance, selfishness, jealousy, competitiveness, materialism and outright ghastly behavior anymore. One way my mother would abuse me is with the double standards. I would have to tolerate my sister’s awful behavior while my mother did nothing. If I said anything to my sister, I would get an exceedingly defensive reaction from her while my mother sat there trying to hide her satisfaction behind her poker face. I am so relieved to finally have said to my sister, I do not like you. I told her that if we were not sisters we would not be friends and we should just accept we do not like each other and get on with life. That sounds mean but it was so liberating. I do not have to put up with her anymore. So I am low/c with my mother for 5 years now. It is really low since I moved away. NOW, my mother is practically begging my forgiveness. It is confusing because she actually did what they say a narc will never do, she revealed a story to me about her childhood in which she was terribly shamed by her family. I see this as her core wound. She has told me things like.. she is appalled at her behavior, I basically never had a mother and only people who do not know her love her. I was pretty shocked. She revealed her shame to me by sending me a journal she had written. She said she wanted to give me some answers and also help me understand why she could not be a good mother. So, the journal was sad, and, of course being kind, it made me feel sorry for her. We have been going back and forth via email, she wants me to forgive her, she claims she can give me forgotten love. In all the discussion I asked her some questions about past events. Some of these events, things she did to me, she of course denies. While in the past she accused me of lying, right now she says, “she does not accept my memories.” She then went on to do a very Narc thing, she told me her therapist said I will always hold her feet to the fire. Ta da!! Still a narc. This is my mother’s big game with me since I can remember, blaming me for not getting over things and not being able to forgive and forget. This is the same story, only a little different now. She will still not acknowledge the things she did to me and essentially got her therapist to believe whatever stories she told her about me. And, even now, when she so badly wants my forgiveness, she is still doing the same thing, saying I will hold her feet to the fire means I will not move on and this implies “I” have a problem, I am the problem. Weird thing is my mother will apologize again and again using broad strokes but she will not acknowledge individual events. I thought deeply about it and decided to respond with wisdom from a spiritual perspective, that being the forgiveness and redemption she seeks needs to come from within herself, I cannot give her the peace she is seeking. This is hard for me, very hard because I do believe she has moments of wanting to be different. Perhaps her wanting to love me is even sincere. And yet, even if she is sincere, I clearly see she is not capable of being mature enough, does not have the skill set to be accountable for her behavior. It is like all she can do is forgive and forget because she has no other tools. Okay, not to make excuses for her, though I do feel this. I have not responded to her anymore, she asked for my blessing, told me she could give me love if I gave her a settlement (?) I am not sure what that means, maybe she had been drinking when she wrote it. I feel sad for her, truly sad for she it seems she is beginning to feel the consequences of her actions. I have felt the consequences of her actions, of her neglect, for a lifetime and I know the deep pain of it. And yet, I can not enter into the quagmire again, she showed me with her comment about holding her feet to the fire that she has not changed. I do not think she can. I have spent decades trying to heal my mind body and soul from the damage of an abusive family. The information about Narcissism and the brutal effects upon the scapegoat is the missing link. Nothing seemed to work before, I still felt so F’d up, like I was inherently flawed. I am 48 now, I want to have the peace I have worked so hard for. It is really heart wrenching because I do not like feeling her pain, seeing her suffer. At the same time, i know I can not really help her. And I also know that if I stepped into the lions den again, eventually I would be mauled.


Cry Girl November 3, 2016 at 8:58 pm

I never experienced this from my mother on any significant level until just recently. My mother and I have never really been of extremely friendly terms. I remind of everything she hates in my father (to whom she is still married, mind you). However, since she can’t take out her anger and frustrations on him it all gets put on me. Most recently my mother over-stepped her boundaries with my niece and then talked to me about it. No that my sister has been constantly trying to keep this boundary line clear I didn’t know what to do. I felt it was wrong but I didn’t feel it was my place to address it. So I brought it up to my sister who did go and address it that very same day. Since then my mother hasn’t spoken a word to me or even looked in my direction. When I greet her, she looks the other way. When I speak to her, ask a question or anything she walks into her room and shuts the door. When I come up from my room and sit at the table to eat, she gets up and, again, walks into her room and shuts the door. This has been going on for a week and I’m starting to wonder when it will end. Part of me wants to say “good riddance” because I won’t have to deal with her constantly telling me everything that’s wrong with me and how I should fix it. But then another part of me says “she’s your mother, love and respect her, repair the rift.” I hate that part of me and I want to strangle that voice. I don’t feel like I did anything wrong, but then I could be wrong, according to her I often -am- wrong. I don’t know what to do or how to handle this emotionally. I’m moody and feel like crying most of the time. I’m a school teacher and this is starting to affect my classroom atmosphere and I hate that it affects me so much. What do I do? Should I just pack as much as will fit in my car and leave the house? I don’t have anywhere to go or anywhere to live. I’m planning to move out in January but until then I’d be homeless. I’m just so tired of being made to feel like the family “eff” up and this just makes it sooooo much worse. I need help.


Shelly November 8, 2017 at 4:35 pm

I wish. It would be one of the best days of my entire life if she would ignore me and give the silent treatment. I don’t want to talk to her because no matter what I say she finds a way to make drama out of it and make me regret it so I try to avoid her. She blows up my phone, gets so pissed, complains to him that I won’t answer (if i do, he also gets pissed at me because I said the wrong things), She threatens me that she’s a Scorpio and I won’t like her sting, I’m ruining her son’s life, blood is thicker than water…blah blah.. i’ve outright asked her what i can do to ever be, “good enough” for her and she ignores my question and moves on.

Pray for me. Ugh. I think we birthday is coming up. It may be the 15th. Hopefully she won’t make him lose his job again to spend time up there. I know Scorpios are supposed to suck but are the numbers 11-15-1951 the antichrist birthdate by any chance because I think thats when she was born.. Just checkin


Charlie December 18, 2017 at 3:01 pm

I’m sorry!! This article started really well, until i read the part where you have to put up with the mil behavior. No-one should have to put up with emotional and mental abuse!! So your basically stating put up with abuse and accept who “they ” are.


Alicia Kukawski June 20, 2018 at 4:49 am

Thank you so much for this article. It’s so hard to realize that it’s not your fault, and that these moms choose to do this because of something deep within them. This article was so helpful.


Rachel Symons July 13, 2018 at 4:12 am

My mother gives the silent treatment, again she’s just done it because I said wasn’t convenient for her to come stay, every other time I’ve let her. Now again I’m being punished with silent treatment. Over the years I’ve stepped forward forgiven her horrible things she’s done to me she’s lucky to be in my life at all. I explained in nice way not convenient this time for her my dad to stay …. my son needs peace quiet he works shifts 12 hour days. Getting to the point where I’m not going to be the one step forward when I Ive done nothing wrong. Any thoughts views greatly appreciated


A. November 16, 2018 at 3:21 pm

I have been on the receiving end of “shunning” from my MIL and SILS for going on 2 years now? It all began when I asked them to stop saying “they hate Canadians” to my face. They were new to Canada and they HATED Canada. Hated it. I was to absorb all their frustrations and hostility. Stupidly, my own mom and I thought if we just showed them enough love, this would change. Of course it never changed, it just fueled them. Finally after 15+ years of putting up with their rage, I said, “Enough”–you cannot say you “hate” people to their face, over and over again. Plus, now there were children, my children, who were also Canadians. I wish I had confronted them sooner as I realized they really meant it when they said they hated me. The terms for me being in the family was to absorb their “hate”–to stand up and say no more instantly earned me a ticket to shunning-land. And so it has continued to this day. I suppose at some point I’m supposed to come crawling back and say, “Gosh, it’s okay, you can say you hate Canadians”–and plead for a crumb of mercy from their sick table. I keep asking MIL for an apology or to acknowledge how wrong going around saying you hate people is–I mean, they are Christians after all. No apology has come, of course. And she just continues to ignore me. Trust me, if people hate you in year 1, they probably will hate you in year 15 and year 16 of your marriage. But can someone please tell me what to do about my husband? I so wish he would go no contact with his mother–but he hems and haws, he says, “But she’s my only contact with my dad.” The truth is his dad had a stroke a few years ago and I’m not sure his dad even knows who his son is. Plus, his mother doesn’t even allow him to speak to his dad. I feel like MIL is still controlling us. What can I do?


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