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My father and grandfather (my mother's ex husband and father) have told me for years that my mother is narcissistic. I guess I never thought it through. I knew she was difficult, controlling, and self centered but I never made the narcissistic connection. I have been reading a lot about borderline/narcissistic parents and I was shocked when I could come with an example with my mother for nearly every example that was provided. I feel like so many things make sense to me now. As a child and teenager my mother wanted to CONSTANTLY be talking to me. From the moment I woke up to the moment I went to sleep. She wanted to be talking to me. If I shifted my gaze (and she noticed) she'd flip out and accuse me of not paying attention to her. She still does to me as an adult! I never knew that was a narcissistic sign. She says she doesn't remember traumatizing things from my childhood that involved her, and the things she does remember (from childhood and adulthood) are my fault somehow. 2 years ago she offered to take me to the doctor when I was sick (she can't drive unless someone is in the car with her) I thought she was being nice, but she really want to run errands for herself. She needed her ID for something and couldnt find it (she loses EVERYTHING) and I said exasperated, "Why can't you just put it in the same place every time?" And she slapped me across the face. It all makes sense now, though. I guess I was looking for others in similar situations... how did you know you were dealing with a borderline/narcissistic parent? And what steps did you take?

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When my elderly friend started ordering people around, I secretly suggested to his home health care aid to just not do what he wants. I just didn't do what he was demanding after a little bit of self-discipline. He got the message very soon after and he realized he had to start asking nicely. Sometimes I felt he was overly dependent after finding out he could do so much for himself. A little more self-discipline and I had to start stepping back and even leaving so he couldn't expect anything of me if I wasn't there. Of course there were times I just put be there anyway, I had to take care of myself and my needs
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Oh...Don't let her tell you what to do!! Stop that behavior!
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Yikes heather!! So sad you had to grow up with a mother like that!!
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I knew when I had an example for every example that I read, like you! There's no real cure for the realization that she can't actually care about you the way you'd like her to... buy you knew that, now you just know something more. She's not THERE. I think some part of their psyche got killed. I used to be amazed my mother survived her childhood... then realized parts of her didn't. It's sad! I know it's hugely disappointing, but like others said, this can help YOU be who you need instead of hoping she will be. Bless.
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Hi heather, I've got one too, and I add another vote for finding a counselor and reading a book! Once you get to know a counselor, you can go back periodically just when you need a 'touchup,' that's what I do. Mine recommended this book and now so do I: Understanding the Borderline Mother: Helping Her Children Transcend the Intense, Unpredictable, and Volatile Relationship by Christine Ann Lawson. How I missed borderline was my mother isn't a huge narcissist, sounds like yours maybe isn't either, there are other vatiants worth understanding. Boy do I know those irrational blowups! Be ready to catch her hand next time, or grab it afterward and set her straight. Don't be afraid of conflict when it's needed and don't worry that you're giving in to the drama she craves (which she does). I was over 40 when I learned about this, and I still work at it, but I try to get that mental and emotional distance you need when someone's not well. I'm impressed that your dad and grandfather knew about this! Good luck on your journey, knowledge is power (for gaining better peace of mind).
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As an abuse survivor, I strongly agree not tolerating someone hitting you especially to the face and head. There are some people you just don't hit in the head or especially in the face, Some people people will actually tear into anyone who hits them in the face, especially if they grew up with a lot of that kind of treatment, that's just how it is. Somehow hitting someone in the face triggers something in the brain, that's just human nature and hitting anyone in the face is obviously unacceptable and it should be strongly discouraged because the person hitting you in the face can actually come out on the worst end of the deal
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Pacific Daylight Time, just past midnight on a Monday night, it's now Tuesday.
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8/23/2016. @ 12:02 a.m.
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heather85: Perhaps your mother never gave you the chance to realize she had incapacity as a mother because she was always a "motor mouth, e.g. Chatty Cathy." She never gave you any time to think. There is something amiss with her. I wouldn't tolerate being slapped in the face by her. You should tell her that this was unacceptable. I was recently with a cousin who visited when I had to live with my mother out of state. She never shut up going on and on talking to me! The way I dealt with it just by nodding by head. Not totally your situation, but that's all the scenario I had.
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Wow--this is such a common "thread" as it were, and the advice given is great. To a narcissist, you are just an audience. There are many varying levels of narcissism from the very mild, just kind of "look at me and acknowledge me" to the type your mother seems to be, and beyond. My mother is somewhere in between. Age has softened her some, thank goodness, but the MOST effective tool for me has been to simply walk away from her, sometimes for long periods of time. Luckily for me, she does not have my phone number (been the same for 37 years, but SHE never bothered to learn it, or even write it down)...so I can completely control what I do with/for her.
I have felt a lot of guilt when I "abandon" her, but she lives with my brother and his family, they are used to her and they also give her a lot of space when she's being a brat. It took me a long time to realize she was toxic to me--not always, but enough that as a grown woman I do not have to simply put up with her. I respect she is my mother and she (sort of) raised me. But I'm not letting her abuse me into my 60's and beyond. She was a thrower and a screamer, not a slapper, so I guess to each her own. The other day, I swore in front of her--she said "I NEVER swore in front of you kids!" and I about laughed my head off. One of my biggest memories of her is the door slamming swearing fits she'd have--and we'd all be cowering in our rooms.
I'm trying to learn to love myself. It's hard. Her voice is in my head telling me how sub standard I am---I feel for you. Can you take time and space and get away from her? Just b/c someone is family, you don't need to be beaten up by them. Don't hinge too many hopes of HER changing--she probably won't. Change you. And love you. What she says about you may hurt, but it doesn't define you. (Good advice I need to take for myself!!)
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Hi, I know how you feel as far as "you just never imagined"! The harder one tried to be positive and find the good in all things it seems with this kind of person they just take MORE advantage and tries harder to put the guilt trip on! This is happening to me even more so now that Mom has Alzheimer's.
It is not an easy time but at least you have realized what is going on and that is the biggest step because now you can protect yourself because you now KNOW! I am constantly fighting with myself to the fact that I am abandoning her and that she is taking all my energy and I have to defend myself to keep from getting down too! LOVE YOU for a while and do something to live for yourself or this life will be spent living for her, that is not why you are here!
Happiness & Joy
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I would not go as far as totally cutting your mother out of your life. Now that you know what your mothers problem is, you can deal with it better. A lot of ignoring is in order, but if it gets too rough, tell your mother you have to run an errand and will talk to her later. It's a mental illness and she can't help it. Maybe a little counseling is in order for you to help you deal with the traumatizing events from your childhood.
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A narcissist has no compassion. They are cold and devoid of feeling. If a parent is like this, it is very hard to deal with. Once you understand that you are not the problem, it's them, you begin to heal. Do not argue with her about childhood issues, you will never win. She will never admit she was wrong or apologize. You will never get her approval. Take care of her the best you can without becoming emotionally involved.
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Anytime you deal with a narcissist, you're in a very dangerous spot and the best thing you could do is cut it off and don't look back. Narcissists are actually very selfishly greedy and they don't care about you or your needs. From your description, it sounds like she wanted to be the center of attention because she wouldn't let you live your life. If a narcissist cuts off the relationship, they're doing you a favor, enjoy the freedom and don't look back, you deserve better. You really don't have to take care of a narcissist even if they are your relative. I know when my abusive parents lost custody of me to the state, I was never ever required to take care of them, I was emancipated from them because they lost all rights to me. I moved on with my life and to some point or another I actually forgot about them. No one ever came looking for me until after my dad died but the funeral was already paid for but I don't know how. The article said family had a private funeral but I'm the only family left so I don't know who this so-called family was that held the funeral for him because I'm the only family he has left. When they died, the only thing I could think was good riddance! Another thing I knew when my abusers died that they could never again hurt anyone else. In fact I was just thinking of them being in eternity and each of them having to answer for the abuse. Dad was the only working person in the household and the provider, but he sure as heck didn't provide protection for his kids. No, he didn't protect us from our abusive mom, and he was just as bad because he was also abusive.

In your particular case, you can just about bet that your abusive mom will hit you again, she won't stop and the abuse will only worsen. Don't fall for those so-called good times, they're just part of the cycle and things won't change. Those so-called good times are just part of the cycle to trick you into thinking things have or will change, but they never do. I know, I barely survived 13 years of severe childhood abuse that actually killed my only bio sister. Abusers will kill you in the end before moving onto their next victim. Don't be a statistic, just leave the toxic relationship and don't worry about this person's care. Let them worry about it, it's not your problem or responsibility. If they want to abuse you, they don't need you nor do they even deserve you, you deserve better
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Check out the dysfunctional thread. There are a number of us there. If not the parent, then siblings.

https://www.agingcare.com/discussions/The-Caregiver-Dysfunctional-Families-149068.htm?cpage=0&cm=655891#655891
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I think you would benefit from support from a counselor. Boarderline or narcissistic personality disorder is a complex diagnosis. Mental Health professionals offer these diagnosis with extreme caution after working with someone directly for a considerable time. Unless she agrees to work with mental health professional consistently you will never know for certain if she has a diagnosis. What you can do is get the support you need to recover from a traumatic upbringing. People who grow up with a parent with any personality disorder really have a hard time sorting out their lives. Counseling will help a lot.
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Another great book that helped me with this issue: Adult Children of Emotionally Immature Parents: How to Heal from Distant, Rejecting, or Self-Involved Parents by Lindsay C. Gibson PsyD
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I am not sure I can help, but to let you know I am in a similar situations. Instead of wanting my attention, she wanted me to take care of everything growing up. A few yeas ago she separated me out of her life, literally moved with out telling me. At the being of this year she went into a diabetic comma, and she has not been the same since. Short term memory loss and just not wanting to take her medication, including her insulin.

So, I have been struggling to move past her behavior to help her. It is a day by day thing. I found a friend who has similar issues, so we talk a lot. I found and read this book, "Will I ever be good Enough?" It gave me an A-Ha-Moment, of not being alone. If you need to vent, drop me a private message. Hugs!
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