It Was all for You
- Narcissism in a Different Disguise

by Snakes

Visitor's Story:

My story is probably less typical in a forum like this. I was raised with plenty of privileges and cannot remember anything that I would easily identify as abuse.

What actually led me here was the feeling of never having been a real person - always an observer, a listener, a mirror.

I realized that my mother is a bizarre sort of person - one that always looks perfect, and behaves and speaks like a television presenter, with perfect enunciation and absolutely no betrayal of emotion.

This realization led me to others. She had never seen any of her children as real and alive. All our perspectives and experiences were deliberately designed to have an effect on her.

If I cried because I was scared at night, I was manipulating her. When my sister got divorced, it was "how could you do this to me and destroy my dreams?".

I realized when she homeschooled me, she didn't want me to have friends. She actively worked to sabotage my friendships by suggesting disloyalty, bad character/traits, or by strictly limiting my time with the person. She would tell me my friend had said something about me to her that indicated they wanted me to go away. Usually I believed her.

It was only when I saw her excessive control in my sister's life (managing her marriage and divorce, inviting her ex husband to things, meeting with him behind her back to try and set them back up, rage when he eventually asked her to stop), that I began to put it together. Before then I felt like I was the problem.

We had screaming fights daily when I was a teen and I thought I was a super rebellious kid. Now I know - she was never there.

She is as shallow as an image, and too blind to really experience others at all.

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- Narcissism in a Different Disguise

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Dec 10, 2021
Home schooled to stunt me
by: Anonymous

I don't often comment but had to here. I had a similar situation with being home schooled. I only realised the last few years how much was wrong, because I have my own child. I'd been brainwashed to think children learned nothing in primary school and were only put there because other parents weren't as good as mine.
My mother was single, so free to make all the decisions based on what I now realise were warped views and motivation to make points about her own childhood, where she had been put through expensive education. She made out she was doing me such a favour, but she didn't replace any of the education. I see now how natural it is to teach your children - do cooking with them, get excited when they make a new friend. I realise now that my mother was trying to stop my independence and growing away from her. At 11 I was spat back out into primary school after terrible things had happened during the years she had me out, which she did nothing to sort out and I just had to live with. My memories and what i now know of 5 year olds tells me I'd been a confident child at nursery school who loved learning - reading out my own stories in assembly, orchestrating the whole playground in a game I'd made up, enjoying doing maths and being popular with other kids. When I went back at 11 I was so shy and ashamed I barely knew what to do if someone said hello to me. She never did anything to help me catch up with what I'd missed.
In my teens I too saw myself as a rebellious teen, rude and swearing at her, treating her house "like a hotel". She hated my friends and my boyfriend. Then I got a medical condition, and all she did was go the doctor once then leave it. I only realise now that if your child has a condition that's affecting it's life, a parent stops at nothing to do all they can - they at least visit the doctor a second time to say it's still continuing. I dropped out and barely left the house for 4 years and she did nothing. It was how she wanted it. I kept breaking the washing machine door trying to do my own washing. She never explained that you had to wait a few minutes until it clicked unlocked. She kept the status quo with me incapable and feeling I'd never be able to do without her, being told I was ungrateful, never realising what she was stealing from me. I tried to cook and she shamed me for not knowing what foods to cook together, but never taught me.
When I was 20 I found a way to manage the condition and told her I was going back to live with my best friend and so my studies. She seemed furious. I put it down to it being a shock. Things never made sense as I never put the jigsaw together.
The pattern has continued, hobbling along trying to achieve despite the lack of teaching, dysfunctional model of how to relate to people, and no idea what I wanted to do or who I was. I escaped the web finally for various reasons that caused a shift. But still I never realising, until I had my own child, that she was the cause of my problems, the reason I spent my teens and 20s in and out of intense misery feeling life wasn't worth living, seeing my years go by being her emotional scapegoat and someone for her to call "parasyte".
The jigsaw is pretty much complete now and I see she did everything she could to keep me dependent and hers. Finally I've come to the point where I will never trust her again.
Good luck to all survivors of narcissistic parents.

Jul 13, 2021
by: Reed

I had very similar circumstances growing up, not much on the outside looked too odd. My parents made me and my brother believe they were basically the smartest people on earth and every decision they make is golden, they were also really good at putting out an exterior friendly, successful image to people. It’s hard for me because I’m able to see through the facade but no one else can and they don’t believe me when I report the abuse, comes across as I’m just someone with chemical imbalance or spoiled. My parents pushed me to be perfect in every category of life possible, had to be best athlete, get top grades, be good looking, very friendly, never get in any sort of trouble no matter how small or big, essentially an impossible task and would make me feel totally worthless if I couldn’t live up to their standards, the pressure when on when I was basically 5 years old and am now 38, it took me a long time to figure this out. I’ve had to try and learn how to get pleasure in the little things and to not perpetuate my parents ways on to other people as well, very difficult road to freedom but it’s better to be free. Good luck

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