Living with a narcissist

How to cope?

41 to 49 of 49 messages
09/02/2013 at 20:34
Helvetica Bold wrote (see)
My mother was a narcissist. My father was completely under her thumb. I emerged from childhood with a completely warped view of the world and it has taken a lot of time, money and suffering to deal with it. I only ever had a few days alone with my father without her imposed itinerary, but I cherish those memories, and if they had split I hope I would have had more time like that in the normal world.. But it wasn't going to happen. I went around with a lot of guilt because I believed that my mother made all kinds of unbelievable sacrifices just for me, whereas actually everything was arranged to be about her in the end and I was being manipulated.

Good luck, and be aware that if there is any manipulation going on, the kids will benefit immeasurably from even a short break from it.

You have my admiration for your post.  

09/02/2013 at 23:30

Thank you all again for your comments, much appreciated. Helvetica Bold - thank you for this and as RicF said it is a brave post. I have been / am completely under the thumb as well (coward as RicF said) but I have seen the light (sounds cheesy but unless you have been in this situation you dont know how the manipulation etc preys on you and makes you believe) and I need to fight for proper access and time with my kids, I don't want them growing up thinking that was is happening is correct. When my wife is out of sight my kids talk to me and we have fun, I always make sure I smile and tell them I love them, when she returns the fear returns and they withdraw. I am going to fight to give them longer memories that they can cherish, it will not be easy but I need to do it.

Thank you all. 

10/02/2013 at 08:54


You have plenty of support on this forum.

Sounds as though your kids have already worked it out. Once they see enough other people and how they behave, they'll acquire (with guidance) all the information they need to develop into balanced individuals.

Do the right things and time will do the rest.

Good luck.

10/02/2013 at 10:58

RicF - thanks for that post, appreciated.

10/02/2013 at 14:03
Screamapillar wrote (see)

The thing is, with narcissists you can be passive or you can be aggressive  but you can't win either way. People think narcissism is all about vanity and wanting to be praised and fawned over. It's nothing like that at all. It's obsessive, nasty and completely dysfunctional. Narcissists have no empathy or sympathy even for their own children. They are emotionally deficient  - only one step removed from psychopaths. 

 You have to have known one to understand how completely f*cked up they are.

I believe this is correct. Genuine narcissistic personality disorder is not a behavioural choice. If you're sure this is the problem (and not just passive aggressive manipulation and bullying) the best thing you can do is get out and get your kids out too.

Years back I had a partner who was an extreme narcissist and for a fair amount of time I tried everything I could to help him and put up with a lot of crap in the process but in the end I chose to cut him off completely and have nothing more to do with him. He still owes me a lot of money but I've written it off. He told all of his (and some mutual) friends that he had ditched me, that I was the one who owed him money and basically everything that he'd done to me became in his mind things that I'd done to him. A lot of them believed him and probably thought I was a complete looper! He refused to take any responsibility for anything he'd done, blamed everything on me, and said he didn't want anything more to do with me (after I left him, lol!) yet spent over six months immediately following our breakup stalking me online and harrassing me by phone, text and email, sometimes calling and texting me 50 times a night. I persistently ignored him adn eventually it died down but even now, five years since I last saw him or spoke to him, he continues to follow me around online using assumed names that he thinks I'm not aware of.

Narcissists are indeed completely f*cked up!

10/02/2013 at 17:32

Presumably if it came to a divorce, you would get a court order giving you more access to the children than you have now, maybe nearly full-time. That would be a serious threat to your wife.





10/02/2013 at 18:36

If the Narcissist individual is deemed by professionals to be a danger to others, then they could be sectioned under the Mental Health act.

In this case the harm could be to the mental health of one's children.

Worth a visit to a GP for advice.

10/02/2013 at 19:12
Sectioning someone because they might be a danger to their children is pretty extreme. It might work as a temporary crisis measure, but it would more usually be dealt with by the family courts giving residence to the other parent (or put the child in care if there is no other suitable relative) and giving the parent with the personality disorder supervised access only. But it would have to be really bad to get to that stage and very few narcissists ever even get a diagnosis - they are able to give a good impression to doctors etc.
However as children get older the courts give them more say in their living arrangements and kids figure this stuff out in the end.
10/02/2013 at 19:30
A visit to the gp will be done. One thing that scared me in the past about going down the divorce route was how cool, cold and rational my wife can sound to people who don't know what is going on. One of my friends asked her why she was treating me so badly and at the end of the conversation she was shocked at how cold etc she was. I feel stronger now and will do what I can for my kids as it has gone on for too long.

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