Follow
Share

I've never connected the dots before between my health issues and my upbringing, but there must be something to it.

I'm now a year and a half into my 'recovery' from a lifelong OCD habit of hair twirling and pulling. I NEVER thought I'd be able to stop, but with therapy, meditation, and time, it's actually happening. Woohoo! :)

Thankfully, I have a mild case of psoriasis, which is pretty much treatable. This has also improved quite a bit in the past year or two. I remember the doctor asking me if there was any way I could remove stressors from my life, and at the time, I thought, "Huh????" But it IS possible, and it DOES help.

I've always been anxious and hyper aware of the emotional states of the people around me. This can be a good thing, but can also be a chronic source of anxiety/depression. Does anyone else out there feel this way?

My brother has had a slight stutter all his life.

Thinking about all of these phenomena makes me think, once again, that I'm NOT crazy, but my upbringing certainly was.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
1 2 3
The answer os clear to me- if the person who is so busy earning your justified dislike and antipathy was ANYONE ELSE but your mother, you would avoid them- wouldn't you? So DO JUST THAT- I would, God knows- an inconsiderate person is a pain in the arse by anyone's lights, whoever they are....I can't see the problem with avoiding a blackmailing tyrant.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Oh yes absolutely! I've been there and I can tell you a thing or two about having had unexplained chest pains and even stress related seizures many years ago. As soon as I eventually found the problem and addressed it with God's help, the physical issues quickly ceased. A friend of mine was swindled out of lots of money after somehow being coerced to start dating this narc short for narcissist. I didn't know what all was going on secretly, but there came a time he was prescribed a Medicaid power chair. After he was measured, interviewed and finally got the chair, soon afterward I saw his girlfriend suddenly had her own chair but something about her getting a chair just didn't seem quite right but I didn't know why. It makes me wonder if her multiple strokes she eventually had actually had something to do with the narc and the stress he put her through. You can only wonder. He milked us financially dry and didn't even care about our financial needs. I can go on and on and on about not only what I experienced but also what I saw. I never knew he was living very large at his girlfriend's expense, and spending all of his Social Security on tobacco only to turn around and get about $400 in monthly gift cards from his aging parents. I didn't know the relationship between he and his parents, but I can just about bet you now he was probably pulling one over on them. I don't know just how many people he had under his thumb, but he's dead now. Chain-smoking had something to do with his death, but I'll bet you a nickel his new supply probably gave him heroin or some other illegal drug because they died only days apart with him going first.

The human body is a wonderful thing but it was never designed to live in definitely under abuse forced upon it. It can heal itself to a point, but it was never designed to indefinitely endure smoking. The more you smoke, the more damage is done and it's done more rapidly. By quitting though, you now allow your body to start repairing that damage. The narc who also chain-smoked actually didn't care about himself and even had a death wish. He said he already knew he was going to hell and didn't care about the one and only secret on how to avoid it. He said he was at peace with burning in hell forever, but I immediately knew he really didn't know what he was talking about because he didn't have before realization of what hell really is and how bad it would really hurt. I tried to help him realize that if you get a burn on your physical body, you can pull away if you get burned on let's say a hot stove. In hell you can't pull away, but despite my effort to make him see this, he just shoved it off. It's sad when anyone dies and we know they went to hell because we now know that in cases like mine, the narc now regrets everything but it's too late for him, he'll one day be thrown into the lake of fire. He likely hurt many people throughout his whole life and now instead of accepting God's gift of salvation and forgiveness, he'll have to pay for his wrongs forever.

A fair warning to all narcs out there:

I've seen the tables turn on narcs, I know you won't get away with it. What you do to others now will eventually catch up to you because your sin will find you out. The stress you put on your victims now is actually hurting them physically. Taking money from them means taking food out of their mouths and the mouths of their children. Instead of taking money, you should actually be giving back even more than you took. I saw what happened to my narc dad who wouldn't provide for his kids. He eventually developed Alzheimer's and a fraudster with a shady past ended up taking advantage of him, and wrongfully gaining everything, leaving me as his only surviving blood relative to fight this mess. To those narcs who won't provide for their own, the tables will turn because many of your victims will end up winning in the end when they get everything you have in certain types of cases.

To those victims, take steps to leave the narc behind, they won't change. Take note of how things were and how they've treated you all this time and look where you are now. They haven't changed. I especially say to those who have been with your narc for much longer, what are you waiting for, a change that will never come? They won't change, just look back on the years you've been with them and you have your answer. You feel drained because the narc in your life is kind of like a black hole. You feel like you're putting all of your treasures into a black hole but never receiving anything back. You feel if you give more you'll eventually get something, but that's never the case. Black holes are called black holes for a reason, and the narc is like a black hole and even a dry well

To the poster who mentioned asthma:

Speaking as an asthmatic myself, my particular type is post pertussis cough variant asthma. I never smoked a day in my life but there are times when I build up the medicine in my system and start feeling great to the point I can back off somewhat or even completely. There are times I can go for a long spans without my albuterol base medications until suddenly it hits without warning. I started feeling ill with a fever one night and was able to successfully break it within hours. I then started developing a worsening cough I thought was just a bad cold coming on only to realize I need to get on the nebulizer because this was not just a bad cold, it was a bad asthma attack. The honeymoon stage of asthma sometimes ends suddenly without warning, whereas other times it comes on gradually and starts ever so small until one day you have an all out dangerous attack. I can only speak from experience with cough variant asthma since it's post pertussis. Whooping cough causes lasting affects. 

Your asthma may have seemingly quit, but what is your asthma really brought on by the narc or is there an actual underlying medical condition you don't know about? Pay close attention when your asthma seems to stop, you don't know when it may suddenly strike again. You may be blessed enough to even go for years without an asthma attack or the need for your medicine but sooner or later real asthma will catch up with you, you can bank on it. I've been there too many times and been tricked into thinking my asthma went dormant, which may happen for a time but sooner or later, it catches up with you. Pay special attention and listen to your body for warning signs. Asthma is a life-threatening condition that can actually kill you if you're not careful. Avoid triggers as much as absolutely possible. My main trigger is smoke, even secondhand smoke. I can even be passing an area where there's smoke in the air from a grill, bonfire or some other smoke producing source. If it don't hit me immediately, it will later on, and depending on how much smoke I accidentally breathe then will depend on how hard my body must work to cough those toxins out. It seems like each time it hits me, it hits me harder and harder each time. Asthmatics, avoid triggers by all means, you never know when you may end up in the ER. For those of you with  post pertussis cough variant asthma who happened to be non-smokers, you're probably very prone to respiratory problems like bronchitis. Not just air irritants can cause problems, but also the cold winter air can cause bronchitis if you must commute without a car during those bitterly cold months. If you're in a position to just stay in all winter, do it, just don't go out unless you're going by car. If you live alone and have stocked up on your shelf staples like canned goods and similar items and even other needed supplies, the only time you should ever have to go out is when you need something like milk, eggs or some other item that needs refrigeration. Other than that, it's best to not even open your door all winter.  The last two winters I ended up pretty much staying in and not opening my door much at all due to my asthmatic condition. This past winter though I had bronchitis because I had to navigate somewhere nearby without a car because I currently have no car. There need to be more programs available to get people in our particular types of situations into cars due to medical need but the problem is there's just not enough of those programs and card owners out there giving cars to people who most need them and it's not just those with children but singles with medical  conditions who happened to have no one else helping them. When you have asthma, you actually need to take serious precautions to keep up with your breathing treatments and to protect yourself and your environment by avoiding triggers as much as absolutely possible. If  you happen to live with a smoker and they won't take it outside, you have the option to pack up and leave if the residence is not in your name. If it is, you need to put your foot down and take legal action if necessary because asthma is a very serious life-threatening condition that can actually kill you
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

((((((((Amber))))))) I think likely most of them are due to your childhood with a narcissistic mother. Yeah, it keeps giving.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Very old thread but had to respond to original question. Yes, from childhood I've had eczema, chronic anxiety and depression, migraines, GERD, repressed memories of childhood abuse, and episodes of depersonalization. Should I attribute all of these problems to my narcissist? Probably not. Some of them? Very likely. Narcissistic mothers: the "gift" that keeps on giving.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

You should have seen the faces of all the other characters… It was jolly funny. Alf Garnett was played by Warren Mitchell, a Jewish actor (from London I think) who loved every second of the role. Iconic.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

CM, I'm smacking my head with the keyboard after hearing that one!
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Just need to share this to get it out of my head, line from "'Til Death Us Do Part", Alf Garnett on Hitler: "...he had his faults, I grant you…"
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

CM, very good point!
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Phoenix I loved my Dad and he was a good person who took every individual as he found him, regardless of race or creed; but I remember slamming a dish down on the Sunday lunch table one day when he was trotting out some stereotype or other and exploding at him "DO NOT BURDEN MY CHILDREN WITH YOUR PREJUDICES!!!" He clammed up, looked guilty, and never did it again (or not in my hearing anyway!).

Glad, I think Archie Bunker - our equivalent is Alf Garnett - lives on a tiny bit in most of us, on one subject or another! It's part of the human condition to have some ingrained negative feelings we're decently ashamed of, which is why we're so relieved to laugh at them. It's just that when dementia gets going we get less good at locking them up…:/
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

I guess Archie Bunker lives on even if just a little bit in folks with dementia. Some of the things my mom has said make him look relatively tame.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

I feel relieved reading about other parents racist attitudes. I haven't had anyone to talk to about my mother's behavior. She's made ugly and painful comments (and facial expressions) about certain ethnic groups, and she'd do in front of my daughter when she knows that my daughter has a lot of friends in those groups. My daughter would just stare at her. She complained about the ethnicity of the people who were buying her house. (even though she was getting a good price). But they were so much better than people of this other ethnicity, who she hates more, and didn't want any of "those people" (the foreigners) buying her house.

I agree about having PTSD for life.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

KayBee your mother wondering why you hadn't slept well tweaked a nerve with me - my mother peers at me sometimes and says "oo, do you need an early night? Don't worry about me, you get off to bed."

It is two years since she was able to get safely to bed by herself.

Is your "friend" saving the laundry up for you? What, does she think you might get bored in her house or something?! I suppose all you can say is "Gee. Thanks. You think of everything."
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

CM: I'm so glad you said that..."only it's not funny." As I said earlier, I have the opportunity to housesit for a friend for a few days but don't really have the energy to even pack a bag and am afraid to leave Mom alone in my house, even tho' my niece lives 2 doors down and I'd be about 2 miles away. But, this is 1 of those friends who--when I'm the one going thru h*ll thinks that I should just "get up and get out of the house and go have girl time" with her and LAUGHS at everything I say. What do you DO with people like that? And she wonders why I DO NOT make the effort to go have coffee with her? Yes, I need a good laugh, but not at my expense. And HERE'S THE REAL PROBLEM... she starts out saying, "just come over and hang out, watch TV, eat what's in the fridge" etc etc." But in the next breath, she says, "Oh, and I HAVE SOME LAUNDRY YOU COULD DO FOR ME while you're there!" Excuse me? I don't expect her to pay me, but... DO HER LAUNDRY? Is that her idea of a time of respite?? I can barely do my OWN laundry, or even shower and wash my hair, much less do someone else's dirty laundry?
Even tho' I've never met any of you, it's sad to say, but I feel much closer to the CG's on this site, b/c no matter what I'm going thru, I've always gotten thru tough times when I can talk to other people who are going thru the same thing. And I wonder why my "inner circle" is so small?! Fine with me! Hugs to you all!
PS - If you have the energy, rent or order the movie (I'm a little behind-the-times), Osage County w/Meryl Streep & Julia Robts. It hit SO close to home that I wanted to go into my Mom's room and wrestle her to the floor for no SPECIFIC reason, but I didn't! I'm so proud of myself!
When I got up at 11 a.m. this morning, Mom asked, "What's wrong?"
I answered (scratching at my invisible hives), "I didn't sleep well."
"WHY?" she asks.
Gee, I have NO idea.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

CG, "there is many a true word spoken in jest." Only it's not funny.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

That is just crazy ain't it? it must of been something in the air yesterday my day was past the stressful mode. Then I ended up with a stomach ache and acid in the old throat. There has to be a better way for us to handle these things that are going to send us to the grave...I have always said between mom and my husband they are going to out live me and then they will be ok.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

This past week I had to make two visits which were relatively quick, but were very stressful. Thankfully, things seem to be working out -- fingers crossed! But I did get a small psoriasis 'flare up' again. It's not that bad, but it takes months to go away.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Yes, I know exzactly how you feel. The up bringing can have a lot to do with it. I was taught NEVER TO CRY and I am 57 and I still don't...just the icing on the cake, so all I can say (I am a fine one to be talking) is I understand fully and I feel your sorrow and pain, I am here if you just want talk, not sure of any good advice I could give, its easy for others to give advice, it helps me to look outside the box and I personally appreciate the advice, but its easier to give than to go and do it.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Yes! I just got back from a week-long visit. I'll type more on this thread later, I just wanted to jump in so I'll have it on my email.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

"We have done those things we ought not to have done, and we have left undone those things we ought to have done, and there is no health in us…" Or, as I thought for many years that the vicar was saying: "there is no helpin' us."

There were two Catholic girls in our class who had to go to their own church on Sundays, and I always envied them proper Confession rather than the job-lot we C of E hoi polloi had to make do with. I reckoned it was a great way to get things off your chest, rather than just carrying the guilt around. Why a ten year old was feeling that burdened with guilt I really can't explain: not a narcissistic mother in my case, just an infectiously dread-filled one.

Sandwich, I can't watch Mommie Dearest. The Anniversary, now… Bette Davis in fine fettle, great fun. Fun? What am I saying! What was that you were saying about gallows humour??
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

The fun of these stories is because it's gallows humor. We all have the same mother. That's why she hangs on so desperately. She clearly isn't human.

I used to feel this undescribable affinity with certain movies and didn't know why until I stumbled upon BPD/NPD/the Cluster B personality disorders and my mom was actually diagnosed. Movies like Carrie, Mommie Dearest.

My entire childhood was rife with stomach aches, nervous bowel, rashes, shyness, insecurity, and general worry. Every day was uncertain and scary. If mom had a good day, you knew it wouldn't last. If mom had a bad day, be invisible. I didn't realize I had grown up being so hyper vigilant about other people until recently, but it's true. Other people's anxiety, stress, and feelings are just right there in my face when the people owning these feelings might not even be aware of them! It's a real burden to put on a young person to be responsible for everyone in 50 miles' satisfaction with you.

It didn't help that I was reared in a very conservative southern baptist church where it was always hellfire and damnation preaching. We're all worms. We're all guilty of something somewhere even if you don't know it. We deserve to burn in h*ll. It was all about guilt, self-hate, and destruction. No wonder my mom loved it so.

I supposedly had all kinds of food allergies that I mysteriously lost the minute I moved out of the house and moved into a dorm. It's a miracle! I always wondered if she wasn't making me sick on purpose somehow. The stress, non-stop guilt, and uncertainty day to day definitely made me sick.

The way I was reared ended up in some sudden onset fear of flying in my late 20s. I had never been taught to self-soothe. I learned that my fear of flying had absolutely not one thing to do with flying at all. I learned some anxiety control techniques that worked like magic and was able to go to Germany & back with lots of connecting flights. And turbulence. I didn't freak out, throw up, or pee my pants. Amazing. I still use those techniques to this day. Anxiety is anxiety is anxiety.

I wish I could go back in time and tell myself as a little girl a few things. One being mom's nonstop caustic rages were not my fault. That I'd get away one day. That it will all be so different once I do get away. Just hang on. And see the school counselor. There was no need to carry around all that sense of responsibility and worry all that time.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

I won't be there, Linda (so I'm all right!); and I'm not sure Lovely SIL's superhusband will be, either. I just found a 12-step guide for scapegoats which I think sounds promising. The difficulty would be answering her all-innocence "who's this for?" Her attachment to her family reminds me of that scene in Alien when they're trying to get the baby alien off John Hurt, and every time they even move a bit of it - like a leg - it tightens its stranglehold. Getting SIL out of this is way out of my league, I'm afraid; I just want some tips to make the holiday go easier on her.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

But that's the thing! When they're not your problem, they're brilliant! And the other thing is, that whenever you think you've heard it all (and that you know a few like them) along comes another one who just makes you think "Wow. Impressive." And, in a strange, appalled way - like with Genghis Khan and Imelda Marcos - you ARE impressed. You just need to figure out how not to let them have anything to do with you. Or anyone you care about. Or anyone they might hurt...
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Cm, the good thing about being at the seashore rather than captive at a family dinner, for example, is that someone can grab Lovely SIL and spirit her off to check out the most wonderful seashells. If the only trick she learns is to disengage and have to go do something else, she'd be better off.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Countrymouse, that's what I do -- "hands down!" :)
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Sodone, you made me laugh out loud, hee hee! But I have to tell you, NO, my mother is not fun. I would never describe her as 'fun.' At some point, though, I will have many funny stories to tell.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Hands down, Looloo. Or that's what daughter and I say to each other (we both find it equally irksome when the other does it, so it's ok!). Have you got a stress ball to keep your hands busy and help you over the humps?

Sodone, it's all material. And, you know, sometimes, I think - well, more fantasise - "if you can't beat 'em…"

But isn't that the thing - HOW do you go about becoming one of these breathtaking, outrageous monsters? How do you lose all sense of self-awareness like that? WHAT makes them think it's all right? I just don't know where to start, sigh…

Oh boy. Mini-Narc SIL will be in the country in a couple of weeks: two for the price of one when the whole of ex's family heads off to the seaside together. Which would be hugely entertaining for me - flying fur all over the shop - but is potentially very bad news for Lovely SIL/Scapegoat who hugs every shred of blame to herself. I'll look up some guidelines for her.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Looloo, I assume your mum's motorcar had a glovebox, possibly with a torch inside, and that if the wires came loose under the bonnet, they could be tightened with a spanner.
Was she feeling peckish when she missed a meal, and was she chuffed when you got an A on a test? Did she carry boiled sweets in her purse, and take the lift in department stores?
Did she wear wellies when it rained? And did she say alu-mimi-yum instead of al-loo-min-um? Was that striped quadruped a zeb-bra and not a zee-bra?
She sounds dotty, and kind of fun.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Sorry about the chest pains. And here I thought MIL was one of a kind.
MIL stories are maddening but strangely irresistible, like prodding an absessed tooth. You know no good will come of it, but you can't stop yourself.
I won't mention the time she tried to take my son, who was then three, to a nude beach. Or the time she got me unininvited to a family wedding by lying and saying my husband and I were getting divorced (we weren't) and I had gone crazy because of all the drugs I was allegedly taking (my drug use is limited to caffeine) and had vowed to "cause a scene" at the wedding.
There are lots more thrilling tales, but suffice it to say she's an unstoppable, malignant force who's probably going to outlive us all.
Yes, nod and smile, until my head explodes.
Helpful Answer (4)
Report

Sodone, I still get 'flair ups' of psoriasis, and I get urges to begin twirling my hair again, but so far, I haven't relapsed. Your MIL sounds so much like my mother - ugh! One thing my mother would do that would embarass me, is her insistence on using the British English pronunciation of certain words. The woman was born in the Bronx NY in 1930, and spent her childhood and young adulthood in a suburb of Columbus, Ohio!!!! As far as I am aware, she visited England ONCE. Anyway, when she'd talk about putting a leash on her dog she'd never use the word "leash," she'd say "lead." Which is 100% fine in the context of being in the countries that use that form of the word, but here, it sounds deliberately pretentious. Which is what she is, so, there you go.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Sodone, you're actually giving me chest pains? I thought I'd left my MIL behind nearly 20 years ago but I think yours might be her identical twin.

The last serious ding-dong (unless you count the mild difference of opinion after which she didn't speak to me for five blessed, peaceful years) we had was about defences to libel. To her credit, she qualified as a barrister when she was around fifty, but it astonished me that, given her recent studies, she didn't know that truth (in UK law, this is) is an absolute defence in a libel action. "Not if it's malicious," she kept parroting. Now, I happened to know this point for complicated reasons I won't go into; and a few days later I recounted the story to an older friend. Who pointed out that when MIL was my age, malice would override a 'truth' defence. In other words, the law had changed, but not MIL. She liked the old one, and she was sticking to it. Hang the law.

But ref the psoriasis - you're going to ruin her games if you won't play, you know. I really do understand how maddening this is, but try the rule I gave my daughter about ten years ago: "nod and smile, dear, nod and smile." It is one form of revenge… :)
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

1 2 3
This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.