Feel like you have to walk around on eggshells when you are around your mother?
Find you have crushing, low self-worth and never feel good enough after being in her presence?
Often get emotionally triggered and feel deflated after connecting with her?
If any of these things sound familiar, you are not alone…
It is certainly not easy having a narcissistic mother. In fact, the knock-on effect can be utterly devastating for many, let alone the long-term and psychological damage it can cause. If any of the above feelings ring true to you, you might wonder what you can do to cope with a narcissistic parent…
You might get into a cycle of trying to please her and often find that you carry out this people-pleasing trait into other relationships.
You might sink lower every time you contact her—questioning all your decisions, value, worth, and self-esteem as she subtly or overtly quashes them.
Or worse, thinking you can change her…
Throughout my three decades, I’ve worked with hundreds of victims of narcissists and narcissistic clients themselves, and I want to share three powerful tools you can use today that will help you heal and finally break free from this crutch that is holding you back in life…
What exactly is a narcissistic personality disorder?
I believe that when we understand something, it gives us our power back.
Before we begin to think about tackling a narcissistic relationship with our mother, we need to identify what narcissism means:
According to the Mayo Clinic, “A narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) is a complex mental health condition in which a person has an inflated sense of their own importance, a deep need for excessive attention and admiration, difficult relationships, and a lack of empathy for others. The person is also particularly sensitive to criticism, despite their high self-esteem. Bear in mind that abuse and narcissism are not always related. A diagnosis of NPD does not automatically translate to abusive behavior, and many people who engage in abuse do not have NPD.”
There are two main types of narcissists:
- Overt (grandiose) narcissists—the most obvious form of NPD. An overt narcissist is extroverted, socially charming, arrogant, and demanding. They are proud of their ability to manipulate and control others for their own gain, and their methods are clear and consistent.
- Covert (vulnerable) narcissist—the ‘shy’ narcissist. They generally lack confidence and use less open or direct methods of manipulation, which are often more difficult to detect. They tend to use passive aggression, guilt-tripping, and/or emotional manipulation.
A narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) causes problems in many areas of life, such as relationships, work, school, or financial matters. People with a narcissistic personality disorder may be generally unhappy and disappointed when they’re not given the special favors or admiration they believe they deserve and they end up projecting this onto their children.
When we arrive on the planet, our minds have one job to do: and that is to keep us alive by keeping us safe. The trouble is, we rely on our parents to give us all our needs, and our parents are supposed to protect us. So if our main caregiver has narcissistic traits, more often than not, we grow up with unmet needs, conflicted belief systems about ourselves, our identity, and how we behave in the world and deal with setbacks.
What are the early signs of a narcissistic mother to look out for?
First of all, people rarely recognize narcissistic characteristics straight away, which can build up over a long period. We often feel wrong and degraded, but we can’t always pinpoint it as it can sometimes be subtle.
But when you understand that a narcissist’s role is to make you wrong because they always have to be right, you can then let go of the notion that it is not your fault.
Phrases you might hear are: “I know what I’m talking about,” “Are you telling me that I’m wrong?” or, “You don’t know what you’re talking about.”
Some other signs to look out for are: deflecting blame and not taking responsibility for their behavior and actions, an expectation to be recognized as superior, and a sense of entitlement and that they require constant excessive admiration.
If you think you are dealing with a narcissistic mother, or you know someone who is, take a look at my three tools that you can implement to claim back the freedom you deserve:
1. Stop Trying: Make a Decision Today to Break the Cycle
You need to understand that her behavior is not your fault.
I believe that you must feel your feelings until they are no longer required to be felt, so permit yourself to let go of being responsible for her.
This might be hard to do, so allow yourself to first sit with it and that all of your feelings are okay. Remember that a narcissist’s role is to make you believe that it is your fault, so this may be new to you.
Throughout my three decades of working with clients, I discovered an intrinsic pattern with many people who have unresolved issues with a parent do not feel good enough. Because of this, they tend to push their feelings down with outside ‘fixes’ such as food, drink, drugs, medication, shopping, or other addictive behaviors. I discuss this in more detail in my book, I Am Enough.
The trouble is that none of these outside factors will ever fix or get to the root cause of these core beliefs to change them.
So, part one of this exercise is simply to allow yourself to feel something, even if this means sobbing into a pillow.
Letting go of this overwhelming and overbearing responsibility for her is the first step to helping you release feelings that you may not have felt for a while.
Secondly, understand that you can claim back your power today…
As children, the things we are told create an imprint in our minds—and continue to—even into adulthood… When you discover where the imprint has come from, you begin to unravel and unpick it, so you can then rewire it.
Once you realize you are not responsible for your mother’s behavior, you can decide to stop trying to change her as she will never be satisfied.
You get to stop wasting any more time trying to get praise from her…
No more thinking you have done something wrong or trying to fix her.
No more berating yourself for falling into a trap or self-loathing.
No more trying to impress her with your accolades and achievements.
You have the power to break the pattern of trying to please her and then feeling empty and punctured afterward.
With your new understanding of this, you learn how to recognize your triggers and stop them in their tracks.
Through practicing self-awareness, you can begin to change your relationship with your mother and, more importantly, yourself.
2. Create Strict and Healthy Boundaries
It may seem easier to step away, distance yourself, or break apart from a narcissistic work colleague, friend, or even partner, but you may think that a parent is impossible. However, you can do things to eliminate the contact you have with her to protect yourself, setting clear and strong boundaries.
Create space—physical space, emotional space, energetic space
You get to choose when you want to see her. You can choose to visit at certain times that suit you and keep it limited. You get to choose when you respond to a phone call or message. When you reframe this, you get to step into your power.
Stop taking it personally
Understand that hurt people, hurt people. After all, who wakes up and says, “How can I diminish someone today?” “Who can I hurt and knock off their perch and take a peg down?” Happy people don’t want to do that. Happy people want to make others happy. So remember, none of her criticism (despite being directed at you) has anything to do with you.
Stop letting her criticism in
Remember that a narcissist will do anything to make themselves feel and look better. Therefore, the only way to do this is to put others down. A narcissistic mother can say whatever she wants, but you get to choose whether to accept it or not. You do not have to react or respond to horrible correspondences or harsh words. You get to choose whether she hurts you or not. Once you learn to practice this, she will begin to realize that this behavior no longer works with you.
Stop the guilt and feeling like you have a duty towards your narcissistic mother
You can keep her at arm’s length and still have a relationship on your terms. Narcissists are very clever at guilt-tripping others, especially other family members. Make a note of the triggers that affect you and create boundaries each time they appear.
3. Learn How To Keep Momentum and Rebuild Your Life
Imagine for a moment being free of all the emotional baggage from your mother that has dragged you down…
Letting go of guilt, blame, choosing to be excited about your future…
And stepping into your new powerful self…
Wouldn’t that feel amazing?
I’m here to show you that this is all possible when you grow your self-worth and self-esteem.
However, you may be thinking, it’s all very easy to say, but it takes practice to ingrain into a new habit—and you’re right; these things don’t simply happen overnight. You may have doubts that some of her behavior may catch you unawares, and you’ll fall back into a negative cycle. You may even have these questions:
What can you do when you don’t feel strong enough?
What if her emotional triggers override your new strategy?
What if her maternal pull keeps you in conflict?
Your primitive mind is hardwired to go back to what is familiar, it’s your safety mechanism, after all, so this is exactly where my Coping With Narcissistic Mothers self-hypnosis will help you reprogram your self-esteem from deep within.
We make decisions using our emotions rather than our logic, so using my self-hypnosis audio will help you reach that part of your mind to make those changes at its core—the subconscious.
You see, most of us aren’t aware of what drives our habits and behaviors because of these subconscious blocks, so we self-sabotage. Therefore, we continue to run over the same familiar patterns and get stuck in a rut in our relationships, especially when it comes to our parents.
Unless we change our minds at the root, no matter what we try to change at the surface level, we always revert to old, familiar behavior patterns.
The great thing is that people get the best results from listening to my self-hypnosis audios after 21 days, so imagine being able to make these huge changes to finally move forward in just three weeks…
The most important words you will ever hear in your life are the words you say to yourself, so when you use my Coping With Narcissistic Mothers self-hypnosis, you’ll be able to give yourself the exact words you needed to hear growing up.
You’ll be able to let go of the need to always try to fix and repair the relationship with your mother and instead; start living life for you right now.
You’ll be able to receive all the nurture, praise, and confidence you’ve ever needed.
You’ll be able to feel empowered—knowing that you are important, significant, and deserving of love and attention.
You’ll be able to finally find inner peace and feel excited to re-write your future.
So instead of putting all of your energy into pleasing your mother, you need to love yourself. Because when you love yourself, the whole world will fall in love with you.
You heal your very soul when you fall in love with yourself.
We can not change what happens to us, but we can change how we respond to it. If you are ready to learn how to redirect yourself into a tremendous sense of self-belief and no longer want to let the toxic relationship with your mother define who you are anymore, then try my Coping With Narcissistic Mothers self-hypnosis today.