My Mothers Narcissistic Reaction to my Book Idea


Narcissistic Personality Disorder

Several years ago, I excitedly told my Mother over the phone that I was going to write a book about my process of recovery from chronic depression and dissociative identity disorder.  She reacted with strange sort of hesitation.  She didn’t ask any questions; she didn’t actually acknowledge this information at all.  I was used to her acting this way and I was only a bit more then mildly disappointed that she wasn’t interested.  I had been noticing in my recovery that she sucked the joy out of everything I was ever excited about. A few days later however, she brought it up as a sort of “by the way” conversation.  She said that if she read anything in my book about her that she didn’t like, she would sue me. I was stunned. I was actually speechless I was so stunned.  Why did she think it would be about her? I was so confused about her statement, that I couldn’t think straight.  I called a friend of mine who is a lawyer and asked her for some legal advice about it. 

 When I got over my shock about her reaction and her threat, I was able to look at this in a different way.  My narcissistic mother didn’t ask me about the contents of the book. She just assumed it would be about her. Why would she assume that?   I hadn’t even thought about talking about her in the book yet.  Her reaction is what I call a truth leak.  Continued…..

 My narcissistic mother just assumed my book might be about her or would include things about her that she wouldn’t like to have published because of her guilty conscience. At first I just asked myself “why would she think I was going to write a book about her?”  Thoughts were sparking in my mind. Part of me was thinking about how conceited she is and those thoughts were mixed in with thoughts like “what the heck is she so worried about?” I actually had to think about what she might be worried about, although of course I know what she is so worried about.  I just hadn’t actually thought about writing in relation to that stuff yet.  It took me days to sort those thoughts and feelings out. I felt rejected, mistrusted, threatened, devalued and unjustly accused.  

Later I felt anger. Anger that she always killed my joy. Anger that it was always about her. Anger that I didn’t have a mother who loved me or even one that was interested in me.

 I eventually realized that her reaction was about her, not about me. She was reacting because of her own fears.  It was always her way to make it about me, doing something that was not acceptable to her.  I am not sure if that is true narcissism or just the way that she has always been towards me.

 Because she reacted as though the book was about her, eventually I asked myself if that meant that she actually KNEW that she was causing me a lot of harm? Hard to imagine that she might have known that she was doing some really wrong as a mother, isn’t it? Maybe half her energy was spent on making sure that I didn’t realize that she might have known that she knew she was a bad mother? Maybe that is what the purpose of her keeping me in the “spin” all the time was.  All so that she could be in control and so that I was so busy trying harder that I never realized that she was the problem.

When I think about all the things my mom said to me when no one else could hear I wonder why she made sure no one else could hear.  She said and did sick stuff in from of others, but some of it she never did in public. Doesn’t that imply that she knew some stuff was just wrong?

 A child molester doesn’t strip a kid down naked in a public restaurant. They groom the victim carefully, sometimes publically, but the actually molestation is done in private.  (except in cases of organized pedophile rings or in an abusive family where everyone is involved in the abuse) A physically violent parent doesn’t beat a kid in the middle of a crowded shopping mall. Doesn’t that imply that they know it is not legal? An emotional or psychological abuser will not always tear a child down when visitors are there. My mother could be all sweetness and light. Does that mean that she knew others would judge her if she tore me down in front of them?  It seemed to depend on WHO the visitors were.

 I thought about those points when I was deciding if the adults in my life actually knew better, or if they really did not. If she truly has narcissistic personality disorder, wouldn’t she have been the same in front of everyone? Wouldn’t she come first in all her relationships? Wouldn’t she treat everyone else like they were “nothing” too?  I thought about those things a lot.  She was really great at telling me how to act but when I started to look at her actions, she never lived by her own standards, at least not when it came to me.  

 I will tell you something I realized years into recovery.  Abusers remember more about what they did then we remember about what they did. And they don’t know how much we remember. Imagine sleeping at night with that on your mind? Not knowing what the other person actually remembers about what they did to us or what we saw them do to others or even if the brainwashing was good enough to hold forever.

Was her concern about my writing a book about what everyone would think about her because of her narcissistic self-centeredness, or was it about her fear of being exposed for the kind of mother she really was?  Although my mother fits the description of narcissistic personality disorder, I think it was the later of the two.

Please share your thoughts. I look forward to the discussion on this post.

And guess what?? my e-book “Emerging from Broken The Beginning of Hope for Emotional Healing” has been published and selling amazingly well since July 2014.  If you find that the subject matter I am writing about resonates with you and you would like to find out “HOW” I broke out of the oppression I lived in, this 197 page, downloadable, printable, live linked e-book will put you on the fast track to busting out of the fog and to healing. I’ve received hundreds of thank you notes from people that have bought my book. Get yours here for 9.97 through the upper right side bar or click this link~ Emerging from Broken The Beginning of Hope for Emotional Healing

Exposing Truth; one snapshot at a time,

Darlene Ouimet

Categories : Mother Daughter



My mother has ALWAYS made me feel like a piece of crap! She is terrified to this day that I will let “the secret” out. That she is a child molestor, cold hearted, self centered B@$%! Nothing I do can every meet her approval and I have to come to finally realize I don’t need her hatred in my life or my children’s. She is not going to change and if I want to talk about her BAD behavior and what she put me through I have that right! She took my childhood from me but I LOVE knowing I have control from here on out! Write your book Darlene! I’ll be one of your first buyers!!!!!!!!


Darlene – I experienced the very same behaviour from my mother. Of all the reading I’ve done on Narcissistic Personality Disorder – it ALL fits. Some of my mother’s abuse, for instance, would be in public but the worst was when no one else was around. They use us as their sacrificial lambs – dumping all their ‘sins’ on us so that we are the ones who carry their ‘sins’ for them and then they ‘lead us to the slaughter’ by slaughtering us with abuse.

I am so glad I found you and your site – it led me to therapy which is going awesomely well. Thank you, thank you, thank you!! You and your site has been key in my healing process. It feels good knowing I’m not alone.


Oh, and I will also buy your book!!


Kathy – I hear ya! It’s coming up 11 years since my mother has been in my life. She hasn’t been in my childrens’ lives either – no way did I want her berating me in front of them, or risking her treated any of them the way she treated me. Thank God my husband was in full agreement because he saw how she treated me too. Like Darlene – the worst and coldest and meanest things were always in private. Abuse changes who we are and who we could have been. Without her in my life I can better concentrate on being a better woman, a better wife, and above all, a BETTER MOTHER!


You are so right! Abuse changes who you are and I have been down so many roads because of it. I too have a WONDERFUL husband that refuses to let my mother be in my life or our daughters. I had to finally accept that she is NOT deserving of my love or any of my time. I am at a point in my life too where I can concentrate on being the best mother possible to my girls, a better wife and overall a better, stronger person!


Amen Darlene! I can really relate to this post. My mother was a narcissist too. Everyone loved her and thought she was so funny, smart, kind and generous. Sure, as long as it fulfilled her needs and as long as you weren’t one of her kids! You wrote that your mother could be “all sweetness and light” and so could mine. I think that only adds to the confusion for us kids. If our abusers were monsters all the time it would be much easier for us to recognize the truth. I remember when I disclosed to my mother that my father has sexually abused me, (which I suspect she knew about anyway), her main concern was that I had just told her that she was a bad mother. She said to me that all her life she knew that the one thing she had been good at was being a Mom, but now I just destroyed that for her. Can you imagine? I was so confused and felt so guilty for doing that to her. The psychic damage is as bad as the physical damage! If we didn’t have the added elements of confusion and dissociation, we could heal quicker and probably wouldn’t have had as much damage to our young minds.


Darlene – It is truly amazing that you are in contact with her. Yeah, it is really hard on them to not be seen as “good” and maybe someone might find out. They remember a lot too. A very long time ago as a teenager I had a fight with mom and said, “Maybe I can live with grandma. SHE can be my mother!” Well, since I have been gone so much and now living with my aunt, have friends that are mostly older too. She said in front of me and others, “Bonnie needs a mother.” And, because she felt so neglected because her younger brother was often sick with asthma, so she felt ignored. My aunt raised her grandchildren cause her daughter died. My mother asked my older cousin if she felt like the forgotten child. Right now I am just trying to get my life together after separating from the military. Trying to finish this degree and get on track. I don’t think I’m looking for a mother anymore.


To Kathy – {HUGS}


Hi Everyone!
Great to have these comments so quickly.

~ Kathy, when I look back I am shocked that it took me so long to see the truth about my mother and the way she always kept me “down” (beneath her actually) This book conversation was in the later months of our relationship. I was near the end of my recovery process, but it was still before I really started to stand up to her.

~ Hi Paulette,
Thank you so much for your consistent support of my blog and my work! I am so glad that your therapy is going awesome! I wonder what my mother thinks about my blog after she issued that threat to me?? I use my real name and I rank pretty high in Google. LOL

~ Hi Gabrielle
When a mothers reaction to sexual abuse or any other kind of abuse is about HER, that is a major slap in the face! Unfortunately I can imagine; I hear these stories way too often. I remember a few times when I told my mother something and she was only concerned about how it made her look. I do understand the guilt and confusion; I lived with it too for way too many years. AND all those times she fished for validation about her mothering… OH and all the times that she reminded me that I was “just like her”…. EWWW NO WAY that was true. (that is a whole other post!)
Thanks for your comments Gabrielle!

Hi Bonnie
~ Just to clarify I am not in contact with my mother. When I told her that I was not going to be treated like this anymore, she stopped talking to me.
Keep hanging in here with us and sharing Bonnie!


I too am amazed at how long it has taken me to realize that my mother will never change. It is what it is! Hard to accept but once you do (for me anyways) that has opened more doors for healing for me!

(((hugs))) Back, Paulette!
Thanks for this post Darlene! It really speaks to me in so many ways! <3


It took me a long time to see the abuse too. I knew my mother had a favourite – my younger sister. And I noticed she treated me different from my siblings when I was about 18. The abuse got worse and worse as time went on. It’s when I had kids that I ‘woke up’!! I could not understand how a mother, who supposedly loved her kid, could treat them so terribly. I couldn’t wrap my mind around it because with my own kidsI couldn’t imagine berating them, embarrassing them, degrading them. I grew up being taught that love was earned, not something freely given. So glad these eyes were opened!


She wanted to maintain any control over you possible, as always.


Darlene – I totally agree, don’t need that! I guess I was also surprised that you mentioned your book to her too. I don’t open myself up to my mother like that. Once I was flipping channels and saw a show where a young woman was expressing pain that she never knew her father. I got kind of upset and teary and then saw my mom looking at me with a smirk on her face. I got up and left the room. She finds any vulnerability or pain funny! It also makes it difficult when you are trying to be a caretaker. Since she hasn’t been good about taking her medications, a friend said she probably needs counseling. I asked mom what the nurse was asking her and she said she was asking if she was happy. I said, well, you know that is a service they provide. If you need to talk to a counselor. Most people don’t stay in the house by themselves all the time. You might need someone to talk to. She said, “Are YOU seeing a counselor?” So, I might be trying to help and she takes it the wrong way.


Wow Darlene, this sounds like something I could have written. I have the same questions about my mother. And a few other significant people in my life. Are they truly just so wrapped up in themselves that they have no clue the destruction in their wake (like Mr. Magoo), or is it deliberate and aggressive? Does she intend to throw a wet blanket on me every time I’m happy or is it “innocent” because she is just so used to being critical and negative and calling it realistic, calling it telling me “the truth”. Then why don’t other people experience her that way? Why do other people think my mom is so kind and sweet and loving? My mother’s favorite phrase was always, “Only your mother would tell you the truth…” But what that really meant was, no one else would dare tell another human being how horrible they think they look because they would be afraid to hurt their feelings, but I don’t care about your feelings, I just care about the truth, the way I see it. If the “truth” is so important, then why can’t I tell it?


Darlene, yes I will refrain from stories I could tell for the sake of room on the page and also legal problems f my own but I agree it was because of her fear that people would think she was not a good mother. I could write volumes of books to fill what I know of abusive mothers (not just my own) who went to severe lengths not so they would become better others and one has young children at home but destroyed her children trying to protect her own reputation so that the media would not publicize it since what she did was illegal and horrifying. But instead she hired a publicist to spin the story that it was all about her being an innocent victim. The egos of these types of people is their reason for living for everything and they are very dangerous when trying to protect their ego. It reminds of me the schools in NYC for begging. I think you have time and money to go to school to learn to beg but you wont go get a degree and learn a real skill? It is so similar. Your mom sounds like toxic waste no offense to you.
I have a guy on my FB friends list on my main page who I met in the 80’s. He is an American celebrity. He was a Broadway star and also a singer in a famous rock band. In the 90’s he wrote a book about his childhood abuse and his parents did sue him. It ruined his career and his true story never got out. He still has lingering legal problems because of his parents not wanting he truth to get out. It is amazing to me the time, energy and money someone will go into to keep the truth from coming out instead of working on becoming a better person. Blows my mind!


“I remember when I disclosed to my mother that my father has sexually abused me, (which I suspect she knew about anyway), her main concern was that I had just told her that she was a bad mother. She said to me that all her life she knew that the one thing she had been good at was being a Mom, but now I just destroyed that for her.”
That is SO CLASSIC!!!! She had that response prepared way in advance in case you should ever bring it up.

Reminds me of a friend in high school and how a family member treated her. I never understood it then, but I do now!! WOW!!!
The controling behaviors are predictable. You can count on them being there!!


When your book comes out, I will definitely buy a copy and read it.

Renee-A Ressurected Spirit
March 7th, 2011 at 5:22 pm

We maybe right and then again we maybe wrong. My mom hated me, she let me know I was never wanted. She beat me and let family members sexually abuse me. When we turned 17 we decided WE were going to love her and force her to have a healthy relationship with her. When the adultself turned 18 we walked straight up to her and hugged her right in our hovel of a place we lived in. She stood straight as a board, I put our arms around her and I told her I loved her. Alaska was warmer than her! Then everyday that I interacted with her I hugged her or told her I loved her! Years later she didn’t have much time to live, she told me that changed her. When she was in hospis she kept saying over and over “is she happy? I need to know if she is happy. We never found out who she was talking about. I know when she past she finally loved me(us). I truely beleive that because of all the conversations we had. I talked to her about the sexual abuse, the hatred she had for me, we talked about why she loved the boys more than her daughters. Why she allowed the abuse, whether it made sense or whether it was crazy I wasn’t going to let her off the hook. It took me about thirty years to accomplish what I set out to do at 17 years old. But I did it because she needed to be confronted. She had to be held accountable to every thing that happened. No one else in the family would confront her. I couldn’t let my life mean nothing and I deserved to know the truth. My girls needed the adult me to stand up for them and for them to know I the adult was going to protect them. I have made some bad choices in my life and I wish I could change them. Especially where my girls were involved. I told them that they need counseling and when it came the time for me to be accountable for what ever caused them heart ache I WAS going to be there 100%. I am so determined to break the sick and celebrate the healthy.


Renee, you are 1 amazing person!Cheers!


Darlene – again SOOOOO familiar. My NMother, when I went into therapy at my college after a suicide attempt at 20 – she said if I “talked about her” or “said anything about her” she would tell everyone I was a crazy liar (she already DID that) and SUE me!!! rrrriiiiiiggggghhhhtttt…

It’s odd though that I never was able to fully speak out about her or figure her out until she passed away 10 years ago… says a lot about how brainwashed ACONS are and how long it takes to get over the confusion & cognitive dissonance.

You rock, Darlene


Darlene; I’m so sorry that your mother could not give you the validation and love you so deserved; I admire how you have been able to rise above the way she treated – and didn’t – treat you.

My own situation is a bit different; my mother was pretty non present and not available although there was some physical abuse mixed in with the neglect and sexual abuse that she allowed to happen. I have an older sibling who was my substitute mother though and she fits the bill for the self centeredness that you describe here and I’ve also chosen to not associate with her for many of the same reasons that are listed here. For someone that “loved” me, she was so vicious and cruel at times. This for me was part of the difficulty in grieving the loss of the relationships I never had and yet had always hoped for; living in this kind of acceptance of what “is” took some time as this was where I got the hands on practice of living beyond that feeling or need of wanting to be “good enough” to finally be accepted and loved. I can’t recall a specific day or time but the time did come when I realized I no longer was feeling that urge for hers or my other older sisters/siblings approval. It was a sense of relief but there was also a sadness at knowing that I was giving up the hope of ever being loved and accepted by them.


Hi Darlene,

I think what people have said here about not wanting to look like a bad mother is right on. I remember when I started going to therapy after my suicide attempt. My parents, incidentally, went to therapy for like a month and then stopped because, of course, THEY weren’t the problem; I was the crazy one. My mother supported me for a while but constantly nagged me to have a family session where she and my dad could be present. Even then I think I sensed that she had one purpose in mind: to defend herself and prove to my therapist (and to me) that my suicide attempt wasn’t her fault.

Needless to say, I refused, over and over. Her enthusiasm for my therapy got less and less until she stopped paying for it. Luckily I was working at the time and paid for it myself. I still remember that therapist. She was the first person in the world who LAUGHED at my parents’ bizarre behavior. I’m learning now to laugh at it too. 🙂

Whether abusers are aware of the horror of their behavior or not is a tough question. Subconsciously I think they are; otherwise, they wouldn’t be so clever in hiding it from others. But consciously? I suspect they justify every crappy thing that they do and completely cover up any humanity they might feel.

I remember once my mother and sister went to visit my brother abroad, so it was just me and my dad. He’d bought tickets to a ballet and we were driving down to see it. We had a fight about something, don’t even recall what, but I do recall my feelings of total helplessness and frustration because he was SO stubborn and just wouldn’t even acknowledge my feelings. He drove me to tears.

There was silence in the car for a while, and I swear I felt a wave of despair coming from him, as if he may have, for a second, recognized that he was being a cruel bastard. But then his logical mind quickly took over and it passed, and he was content again in being a jerk.

I’ll be another customer for your book. 🙂

Stay strong!


This is like looking at my own life. This is such familiar territory that I’m desperately trying to make a little less familiar.


Although my mother is not a narcissist she enabled my father. My mother also hated me, and I didn’t see it until about 2 years ago, and she kept my fathers dirty secrets. My best friend use to ask why my mother could talk to and woul talk to everyone but me. I realize now that she saw me as the “other woman” in my fathers life. I had never thought about it til my husband, at the time my fiance, pointed out that it is NOT scriptural to “Just stand by your man”. I asked him “where do you find that in the scriptures”? His reply? “Ananias and Sapphira”. For those of you not familiar with the story it’s located in Acts 4:32-35; 5:1-11. It points out that we are to not aide and abet or enable those in sin.


My mother has never acknowledged my depression even though she knows I am on medication. She squashed my sanguine personality, because she was embarassed to have so much attention drawn to us. She was embarassed by me, because I was not popular and was not willing to do whatever I had to do to become popular. I just wanted to be me and be accepted exactly the way I was. She used to constantly say to me, “You hate me, don’t you?”


Well well well… so my mothers not the only one who has done this stuff
Im writing a book myself about this stuff (well its included)
This control is VERY CALCULATED by my mother for SELF Preservation to start with.. Then i think she actually came to enjoy it SO MCH.. feeling in Vontrol, all powerful.. SICK AS! Completely absorbed with herSELF & what she can milk from situations for attention.
I SO used to feel sorry for her but i was sucked into a LIE that HER Percieved Need was greater than my own. I was convnced i was slow, dumb, deaf head, something was WRONG WITH ME…. Consistantly backing this up and Physically belting me & verbally yelling & emotionally manipulating me into submission where i doubted myself, had NO CONFIDENCE… eg When we would go visit nana & grandad, i was BAILED UP and TOLD
“DON’T you DARE say ONE WORD..only s*#t comes out of your mouth and i will belt you so bad i dont care if i break every bone in your body & you have to go to hospital”… so once even when spoke to i didnt answer in fear of being flogged… so i got into trouble for THAT – OBEYING HER… so then it was SPECIFICALLY ONLY ANSWER WHEN SPOKEN TO…
I thought it was JUST ME… till i saw the other kids in my family COPPING IT
Your comment “She sucked the joy out of everything I was ever excited about”… it wasnt till my littlest sister once said :and YEAH we were NEVER allowed to be Happy…”… It made me realise that OMG I pushed that out of my mind not wanting to believe that or not being able to fathom How or Why that would be true.. till my little sister said it.

When verbal & emotional abuse was done to started to my little sister (being a peace keeper) i would bribe my little sister to cleaning her room so she wouldnt get belted etc… later down the track i sent a big parcel to my little sister door of lots of little presents to welcome her to her new house… My mother was there and BALKED AT IT.
Shes the same mother that when i started to wear makeup that she shouted me down saying YOU LOOK BLOODY HIDDIOUS…. next day my boss said “tell your mother if you dont come to work with make up on you will get the sack.

She would do a LOT of things in PRIVAE TOO.. when no one was around. eg :
one day while playing my sisters guitar she came and sat next to me on the bed. I had a fleeting thought of OMG shes gonna be NICE for once.
She proceedeed to tell me what a disgusting child i was. How she thought i would turn out the best of the 6 kids but im NOT… etc etc etc
POWER… CONTROL… LIES.. the HATE FOR ME was SO Evident that once my olderst sister introduced me to her boyfriend and immediately whispered to him AND MUM HATES HER. How screwed but TRUE was that.. VERY.

Mums Guilty Conscience caused her to LAYER Guilt on us… any protest by us caused her to get excessively ANGRY.
Her Public face was completely Different in the private 4 walls of that hell they call home.
GROOMED TO FAIL. GROOMED To Submit. Groomed to fulfill HER NEEDS – which was – for me – to be her SLAVE – to raid bins for food made her feel GOOD. (she had a secret GAMBLING ADDICTION i was UNaware of) Almost nothing else did – except if we PERFORMED where it had a Good Reflection on HER ever made her seem HAPPY! It was HYPOCRITICAL Pathetic CRUEL.. sadistic. I once said to her she was SO negative when we were growing uo and she said SHE wasnt the negative one :It was your FATHER”… well us 6 kids didnt see that… (just his anger, alcoholism & other things)

I was very often just too stunned, i never thought of nasty things to say back to her (cos im just not like that) or even anything to stick up for myself was never good enough and SHE could screeeeeeem SO LOUD… she was INSANE when she flipped her lid and flogged ALL OF US 6 kids.

Those TRUTH LEAKS gave me some incling into the fact that there was WAY MORE than ME being to blame for every wrong thing….
How the hell we even stayed SANE thru chronic abuse is AMAZING.. INCREDIBLY AMAZING. The Healing Process has been MASSIVELY SLOW…. because each time i even visit them… the abuse is still there & continues…. even down to my laswy visit i was told to ” OMG LOOK HOW FAT YOU ARE…YOU bloody better get a FUNERAL PLAN because your SO FRIGGEN FAT and WE ARE NOT GOING TO PAY FOR YOUR FUNERAL”
Like she doesnt wanna be responsible for burying me… To me that was concreting “we hate you”. We dont want you to be a bad reflection on us type of thing. Mind you when i was 13 stone or less i was SKINNY and BACK THEN they were calling me FAT… so they have an obsession with FAT & are skewed.. when i was practically anorexic they thort that looked GOOD (sickos)They seem PARANOID regarding anything having a bad reflection on THEM… we wernt alowed to be sick…. i wasnt even given a bra by my mother… wasnt allowed to get an education past year 11 because NO ONE except Number 1 son & Number 1 daughter were allowed to SUCEED.. the rest had to be submissive… Not allowed to be happy or to suceed. I never felt valued, Not being allowed to cook or do certain things left me booted out of home with very little social skills because mum wouldnt let us out to play with other kids.

I have just broken phone contact & will NEVER visit my parents By MYSELF EVER AGAIN if i can help it.. because of the aspect of things said NOT IN PUBLIC.. I cant stick up for myself when there is no one there to proove what they say to my face in private. I dont wanna run around Feel Guilty, Obliging GUILTY or RESPONSIBLe for my mother feeling insecure Unloved, rejected etc etc etc. or that I HAVE TO DO STUFF… I AM NOT MY MOTHERS KEEPER & HER Narsasitic behavior/Personality has No Right To Demand i be her SLAVE.

I wont go on… just to AGREE with all the above in the post regarding Narcasistic Mother….. Healing can take a life time… is frustrating at times and in MY Situation i NEED to have as little contact with my parents as possible… NOW Im not quite so EXHAUSTED with worry about them.. Ive done MORE than whats humanly possible or sanely acceptable to do for them. Im looking after MYSELF so healing can take continue to take place. Im NOT TO BLAME for every wrong thing or negative reflection on them & if I continued having contact with them – im putting myself in a POSITION where IM ENABLING THEM TO CONTINUE ABUSING ME… further concreting their delusions (False Fixed Thoughts) about ME & Others & about themselves. They will never grow or learn if i back down in fear from emotional abuse. My mother doesnt flogg me with a 6 foot electrical extention lead anymore..folded twice…and we got 10 more if we cried…. when i didnt cry i got 10 more … just because it mustn’t have bloodly well hurt enough… so she became more expert at the verbal & emotional abuse instead. Im refusing this cos its NOT ACCEPTABLE BEHAVIOUR toward ANYONE!
MY LESSON in all this…I do my best to THINK About My Motivations for doing things & saying things & behaviours i do privately & in public. WHO will benefit, Is it for self glory, to boost a feeling of control.

Healing started for me when I realised just how much stuff is ACTUALLY LIES I have been fed & brainwashed into believing about mysef. Even if i am a bit slow & half deaf.. thats NOT WRONG…


Darlene – I have been thinking about this and I really wonder if the NMothers had a guilty conscience. Narcissists are unable to really think about or feel for others. I can say with certainty my NMother never had a guilty conscience. Ever. Somehow everything I did in life – such as moving 300 miles away, jobs that I had, apartments I lived in, etc came back to me as “I know you live your whole life just to hurt ME.” My world somehow revolved around her. EVERYONE’s world does in their minds. What made mine threaten to sue me was her terror at her DELUSIONS BEING CHALLENGED and her version of ‘reality’ being proved WRONG. Every narcissist I have met since then – same thing. ANYONE or ANYTHING who threatens their narcissistic space (delusions) is a THREAT to be eliminated. Since even their own children have no value outside of being there to make THEM look good, respectable, etc… we are THREATS when we get older and start to see the world as it is – and realize that they have been LYING to us (and themselves) for years. They will defend their delusions at all costs. When things happened that blatantly blew what my mother told people about me out of the water; she’d RAGE at me – as if I somehow ‘set her up to look bad.’ Even if it had NOTHING to do with her. Even my medical problems I had ‘just to HURT HER.’ Guilty conscience? I just highly doubt it.


It sounds like I experienced many of the same type of psychological, emotional and sometimes physical abuse and manipulation you went through. My grandmother displayed most of the same behaviors, you discribe in your post. I am proud of you, you are coming out of the situation a stronger person. Keep putting one foot in front of the other, and more strength will come.


Hi Amy
This is the spin that I was stuck in for such a long time. your last line is very important so I am going to re post it:

“My mother’s favorite phrase was always, “Only your mother would tell you the truth…” But what that really meant was, no one else would dare tell another human being how horrible they think they look because they would be afraid to hurt their feelings, but I don’t care about your feelings, I just care about the truth, the way I see it. If the “truth” is so important, then why can’t I tell it?”

Thanks for sharing,
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Renee
I am glad that thins worked out for you this way. Thanks for sharing your victory and your determination to break the sick cycle.
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Susan K.
Your situation sounds very familiar to me actually. I can relate to the relief and also the sadness of giving up the hope of ever having a real relationship with my mother. (and my other siblings and family)
thanks for sharing,
Hugs, Darlene


Thank you for reposting Amy’s comments. I GET it now, after re-reading, WOW!!! Another word set as a weapon.


Hi Rainbow,
Thanks for sharing your story, I can really relate to it. I don’t really care if they are aware of the horror of their behaviour; I should have qualified when I wrote that part that that it doesn’t matter IF they know about it or not. Knowing if they feel bad or not isn’t the answer or the path to freedom and recovery. The significant part you share regarding this is that her motivation regarding attending therapy with you was to get herself OFF the hook. Does it really matter if that is conscious or subconscious? That kind of stuff is really invalidating because it takes away from the reason YOU were in therapy. Because YOU needed help and YOU tried to end your life. When a parent forgets about that part and is more concerned with it not being their fault, that is really devaluing and hurtful. I think this is the bigger point I am trying to make here.
Glad you are here!
Hugs, Darlene

I have done a ton of healing through looking at my own life in this way.
Glad you are here,

Hi Shellie
My mother made similar statements designed to take the focus off me and put it back on her. You bring up a good point here; that you wanted to be accepted exactly the way you are. I really relate to that, and I think that we all feel that way, and in my healing I had to find a way to overcome the way that others had defined me, and accept myself exactly the way that I am.
Hugs, Darlene


Hi Laurie J.
Thanks for sharing this. This is a very difficult thing to realize that your mother enabled your father.
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Barbara, (and I hope everyone reads this comment)
About your comment wondering if Narcissistic mothers really do have a guilty conscience. I don’t know about all narcissistic people; I am not sure that my mother is actually narcissistic. I might call her that, but some things about it just don’t fit at all. So although I have used the word Narcissistic in this post, it is the first time that I ever have used it to describe my mother in this blog, and really it could very well be that she is only like this with me, which doesn’t fit with true narcissism. At the end of the day, I don’t care what she is. It doesn’t change the fact that I was devalued, mistreated, disregarded, etc. and that is what I had to deal with regardless of what her problem is.
Thank you for your description of narcissistic behaviour in your comment. It helps to make things clearer.
Thanks for being here!
Hugs, Darlene


Hi Kathy
Welcome to the emerging from broken blog;
I appreciate your passion about this content! Thank you for sharing all of this. You shared great examples of how it can be living with an abusive parent and how understandable it is that it is so hard to overcome that kind of constant abuse and brainwashing.
I am glad that you are here,
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Lisa
~ welcome to EFB
Glad you are here!
Hugs, Darlene


regarding “Abusers remember more about what they did then we remember about what they did. And they don’t know how much we remember. Imagine sleeping at night with that on your mind? ” I know that is true in the case of my first abuser who was my oldest brother who went onto molest his daughter and break her legs at age 2 in front of the neighbors who reported him then through he lived in California and me in NYC he blamed me for calling child protective services.
Anyway I know he has a photographic memory and is a genius and was an actual Mensa member. Though to this day he denies all of the abuse (not just my abuse but others as well and has not been stopped) before I had sense or wisdom enough to cut contact with my family in 1993 he did say he was haunted by his memories and wished his memory wasn’t so good. He also said (he had a dream that God the father) Not Jesus but God the father) who many see as a judge told him not to hurt me in any way or he woudl pay for it. MY dad told me this and told me not to tell him I knew. Apparently he had that night mare a lot. And no he wasn’t spiritual.


Darlene … Respectfully, about mothers being Narcissistic – there is a thing called Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) – and when mothers are NPD, they do single out one child to abuse in this manner and control. I was that one. Just being ‘narcissistic’ is different from Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Of all the articles I’ve read and what I’ve discussed in therapy with my therapist – my mother does fit the bill of NPD in a HUGE way. The description of a person with NPD fits my mother PERFECTLY. It’s awful that there are mothers out there who exhibit no guilt or shame for their actions and the deny ever mistreating you. They will even lie about how they treat you in order to keep themselves on the pedestal of ‘seeming perfection.’ I hate what she did to me – I hate what its done to me. But the good news is that through therapy, I am healing and discovering how to look at those abusive memories from an objective point of view instead of the point of view that I was the one to blame. One memory in particular became very clear who was in the wrong – and it wasn’t ME after all. Not only that, but she downplayed excessively the fact that I was almost raped – making that also MY fault. I can now view that memory how it really was and for the first time, I saw how my one sister (the favourite) took my mother’s side and making it about them instead of about me. So, I am now REALLY learning that everything that goes wrong IS NOT MY FAULT – and this knowledge is wonderfully emancipating. Painful. But emancipating!! :o)


Hi Paulette,
Thank you for clarifying that for me. I did not realize the difference. There is just so much information out there I can’t keep up with all of it! My mother was not just like this with me, so I am not sure that she has NPD either.
Thanks for sharing!
Hugs, Darlene

Everyone ~ I do not mean to misrepresent any mental health diagnosis on this blog, or anywhere else and I should also clarify to everyone that It is not my intention to get into diagnosis on this blog. it is also not my intention to decide what is wrong with my my mother or anyone else ~ but only to heal and promote healing. I don’t do a lot of research anymore about diagnosis stuff ~ not for them and not for me. There are a zillion diagnosis’s out there, and none of them helped me much with the healing process. I know that for some it is very helpful to understand what has manifested such as the type of depression or mental illness or whatever OR to understand what is wrong with the abuser or controller but it isn’t my purpose on this blog.

Thanks and hugs!

p.s. I am really sorry if I have missed answering any comments, I had 43 comments on various posts come in over night, and I just can’t answer all of them.


On trying to understand the abuser (just where the attention starved abuse wants your thoughts…not on yourself, but on him/her)

“Does it really matter if that is conscious or subconscious? That kind of stuff is really invalidating because it takes away from the reason YOU were in therapy. Because YOU needed help and YOU tried to end your life.”

Just knowing the abusive behavior is a pattern is ALL you need to know


“discovering how to look at those abusive memories from an objective point of view instead of the point of view that I was the one to blame.” What a GREAT statement!


I’m sort of confused. I seem to remember reading something where you said you told people in your life you’re no longer going to allow them to abuse you. I remember reading it, b/c I LIKED it.
Anyway, it sounds like that’s what she was doing to you over the phone.
IDK what else to say, except that I had a mom like that-she’s dead now-and we hardly ever talked b/c I was tired of being treated that way.
She wasn’t going to stop doing it and I wasn’t going to continue putting up w/ it. Neither of us was willing to compromise, for different reasons but it still turned out the way it did.
Thanks for listening.


@Paulette I didn’t know that either. I guess though like any disorder unless a person submits to being evaluated you can only go by their behavior. I just found out recently that is a survivor of PTSD in Ny state is married that are disqualified from disability since they are not dysfunctional to the point of not being able to relate. It came up in group. It is one of those issues I guess. This woman in her own terms is disabled but because she is married she is not considered to be disabled by the state. Not the same thing but it is how we use words and perceive things I guess.


Darlene and all: This post on my blog is called CHARACTERISTICS OF A NARCISSISTIC MOTHER. It gives a clear checklist. Of course NMothers don’t need all the traits to be a Narcissist.…/characteristics-of-narcissistic.html


..and Darlene, diagnosis can be very liberating for some. To be able to heal from something many of us need to identify it. BUT – that said – diagnosis or not – ABUSE is ABUSE and your mother (and mine) abused you. Healing from that is long and hard and ongoing. Bless you for this blog!



This is the question I have as well, where to draw the line in talking to someone with whom you don’t have a productive, but even harmful, conversation?

It depends on the persons involved and the situation, but I have definitely come up with a list of such people at this point in my life, with whom I do not communicate.


Hi Vicki,
I am not sure where the confusion is coming from; at the beginning of this post I said that this phone call took place several years ago. That was BEFORE I made it clear that I was no longer allowing anyone to treat me like this. This phone call, several years ago, was actually one of the things that opened my eyes to how she really treated me.

Everyone ~ This book idea has been in the works for several years now first just in the idea stages, and then about 15 months ago, instead of writing the book as I had decided to back then, I decided to write this blog as a way of organizing my thoughts about the book. I have never considered myself a “writer” but more of a speaker, so I have no idea exactly HOW to write a book. Through writing this blog, I have learned a lot and there will be a book update soon!

Hi Barbara,
Thanks for being willing to share your information and checklist ~ I can’t seem to get the link to work though. Could you re-post it please??

~ I realize that diagnosis can be very helpful for many, the issue that I have with diagnosis, for the purposes of this blog is that diagnosis can be very wrong and therefore very damaging so I try to be very careful about it.


I like what you shared about diagnosing – I hope I didn’t create any weirdness about the whole NPD thing. Of course, my mother thinks there is nothing wrong with her, so getting a real diagnosis is impossible and NPD would be so hard to detect unless she tells ‘whomever’ that she thinks she has it, which I could never see her doing. All I can go by is what I’ve read on it and what someone with NPD looks like. Sadly, my mother SEEMS to fit the bill perfectly according to what I’ve read so far, and what I’ve learned from my therapist. :o)


Thanks for writing about all this you are awesome It is really helping me to understand ME .


Darlene, this post hit me squarely where I am now struggling. How much did my mother know about my abuse outside the home, and how much did she know about her own behavior being abusive toward me? I can tell you that when I started therapy 3 years ago with no memories whatsoever of my childhood or adolescence, she went into a panic and laid the groundwork immediately within the family with stories of false memories and ruined families. If she had nothing to fear, if she was totally without knowledge of what happened to me as a child and teenager, if she was innocent of any wrongdoing, why would she have panicked and tried to put up a smokescreen right away before I even knew what I was going to uncover?

There are dozens of stories I could tell of things she has let slip over the past few years, things that point to her knowing things. And in the past they would have flown right over my head. Her compliance in my abuse outright and in the cover up of it has left me totally numb at this stage. Because no child deserves to be horribly abused, and no child deserves to be neglected and treated as if they don’t matter. And no child deserves to be the sacrificial lamb within their own family. And as an adult it is extremely difficult to come to terms with the fact that all of these things were true and still are true. The sacrifice continues in order to save their own butts. I still cannot wrap my mind around these things.

I am always amazed at the timing of things, you know? I needed very much to read your account of having gone through this with your own mother. I am not crazy for seeing the obvious, even if that is what she would have me believe, and have everyone around me believe. And I appreciate your affirmation through your own story! You know how much I feel connected to you and it just doesn’t ever lessen for me!

Love and hugs to you!


~ no you didn’t create any “weirdness” LOL ~ not at all. I understand. I just have to take a more neutral place in MY view. You can have what ever view that you wish! 🙂
and I acknowledge that it is important for each of us to go through our own processes and that they are not wrong in any way. I just want to make sure that my viewpoint is clear for anyone struggling with the whole topic of diagnosis. I can only share what worked for me and I want to be clear about exactly what that was. (I hope that makes sense and doesn’t sound like judgement, because in no way am I judging anyone about this.)
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Charlotte,
Thank you!
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Carla,
Well I read this comment twice now… I have to highlight something you said because it is SO clearly put and if others don’t read all the comments, I hope they read this one! This says it all and describes what MANY are trying to come to terms with.

Carla wrote “I can tell you that when I started therapy 3 years ago with no memories whatsoever of my childhood or adolescence, she went into a panic and laid the groundwork immediately within the family with stories of false memories and ruined families. If she had nothing to fear, if she was totally without knowledge of what happened to me as a child and teenager, if she was innocent of any wrongdoing, why would she have panicked and tried to put up a smokescreen right away before I even knew what I was going to uncover?”

Some parents in abusive family systems paint the picture of “crazy or story telling and false memory stuff” way before the victim ever thinks of telling or is even close to remembering. Carefully laying the foundation for a cover up just as you wrote here. I am so sorry Carla that this all happened to you. And my heart goes out to you because this for me was one of the very hardest parts of the process…
Thank you for sharing,
Love Darlene


Darlene, It has been a long day for me so I am going to be short this evening and read the numerous replies you have received at a later time. You shold be so very proud of yourself for writing. Many, many times I have wanted to do just what you have succeeded in this posting. I still have my mother but we do not talk…mostly because I chose to stand up to her as did her granddaughter of 15 years. For me family has been very painful and I am all for anything we can do to make it better for our children and break the cycle.


I bumped it up for tomorrow’s post but the link is the same:

Narcissists rarely get diagnosed… some of the things you have so brilliantly described about your Mother, Darlene – leads me to believe you have a Narcissist there… it’s my very non-professional opinion of course but only those who have lived with them really know them best…

the words “sucking the joy out of…” in this post is a huge indicator to me. Nparents think EVERYTHING is about them and can’t fathom their children have individuated from them in any way. Their need to control “reality” is overwhelming. Your mother may have had a guilty conscience but my suspicion (and perhaps projection on my part) is she abused in secret and therefore, the book – in her mind – would have exposed her behavior to the world and interfered with her mask of sanity & image of perfection. You would know best.

I don’t believe I had a real mother in any sense of the word. I had a draconian jailer who tortured me for even existing. We did have some good moments but they always revolved around material pursuits. I could never share anything personal with her at all. Something my children have no problem doing with me; because I do not judge them as anyone other than the wonderful people they are & continue to become.


Great blog and I can relate to it so much that I can’t really think of much to add, other than more examples. However, I will say that recently I confronted (or rather was confronted) and said that I am angry about all the control even in my adult life by her. The initial response was that it wasn’t true. So, I gave examples, to which all were claimed to be lies. I expected this so, the few (of many) I chose to relate were those that had witnesses, most that I would rather not contact…but I could and I know they know and would be willing to say so much. Then I got excuses to which the situations were so severe I called them out. Then, I got an interesting response…that response was that I did it. That I chose to listen and do what she said…she didn’t make me. Initially I felt frustrated and then I felt rage…all in a matter of seconds I realized that not only was she right, but that I had control now…and that is the end of that. After bouts of say weeks it comes creeping back…but the guilt on my end, the shame on my end for not wanting to do “the right thing” is relieved by seeing the truth, and knowing that I’m not the only one who sees it.


Hi Bonnie,
Thank you for your share here. This is how I see what we are doing here; what I am doing here in emerging from broken. I am trying to break the cycle and make this a better world for my children and their children and for future generations. For me, healing was the way that I broke it in my own family, and in order to heal I really had to see the truth about what I was healing from. Family is such a touchy subject, but for many of us we have to stand up to family that overpowers us as a part of our healing. If we don’t, it is very hard to break that cycle….
Thanks for being here and adding your voice.
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Barbara,
Thanks for sharing the link, I posted it in the Emerging from Broken Facebook page.
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Wendi,
This is a GREAT example and all in one paragraph! I am going to highlight it to make sure no one misses it:

Wendy wrote: “I confronted (or rather was confronted) and said that I am angry about all the control even in my adult life by her. The initial response was that it wasn’t true. So, I gave examples, to which all were claimed to be lies. I expected this so, the few (of many) I chose to relate were those that had witnesses, most that I would rather not contact…but I could and I know they know and would be willing to say so much. Then I got excuses to which the situations were so severe I called them out. Then, I got an interesting response…that response was that I did it. That I chose to listen and do what she said…she didn’t make me.”

I had such a tough time with the fact that first they said I was lying, then excuses and then the response that YOU did it ~ which kind of shines a bit of light on the first point ~ that you were lying in the first place, doesn’t it??? My mother did this to me too, the first time when I was a teenager and it took me over 30 years to realize that by her blaming me for it in the end, she was ADMITTING that she knew it happened, when she has said all along that it didn’t happen. Thank you for sharing this PERFECT SNAPSHOT of TRUTH Wendi!
Hugs, Darlene


“I had such a tough time with the fact that first they said I was lying, then excuses and then the response that YOU did it ~ which kind of shines a bit of light on the first point ~ that you were lying in the first place, doesn’t it??? ”

“Did what????”

I get it. I just couldn’t resist adding this honest question to the circle!! Because if you are lying, then it didn’t happen, so WHAT did you do??


@ Sheryl – I agree. They don’t want accountability for actions. This is such a good site. I’m learning a lot.


Oh. Okay.
I thought it might be something like that. I wrote my previous passage when I had a really bad cold and severe dizzy spells. Which means I probably SHOULDN’T have written it. Anyway, my mind is clear now, thank God.
I thought your mom had said this recently. Anyway, I understand now that it was a while ago.

The thing that helped me figure it out about my own mom was that she was still physically slapping me in the face when I was 20 years old, but she wasn’t doing that to anyone else in the family. Like my brother and two sisters.

They just all want to keep up the ‘Vicki’s the family scape goat’ actions, and I can hardly talk to ANY of them.
My younger sister shook up a 2-liter of pop and sprayed it all over my kitchen when she opened it for the same effing reason. She also made sexual advances to my boyfriend, who was nothing but disgusted at her, b/c she decided her blond hair and big boobs would be too irresistible to him.
None of them is willing to get over the ‘Vicki the scape goat’ mentality, which is why I have NO family members I can confide in.

This web site is almost the ONLY thing I have. I also have a male friend I can talk to, but he had a massive cardiac arrest on Monday, and I don’t think burdening him w/ issues right now is a smart idea.
Even though he WANTED me to talk to him today, I didn’t. I mean I didn’t discuss heavy issues.
I discussed other things, like when I’m going to see him next and when we’re going to be able to go on the carriage ride through Central Park.


Darlene… WOW, talk about an Eerie Similarity… our mothers really were cut out of the same mold! 28 years ago, when I got a letter from a large publishing house, expressing interest in the book I was writing ~ I had sent them a synopsis, outline, and a sample chapter, and they wrote back asking me to send them my entire book…. I was SO THRILLED, I was floating on cloud 99. I had wanted to be a writer ever since I was in the 3rd grade. My mother had made fun of my desire to write when I was a little girl, telling me that there was no way I could compete with all the other really talented writers out there. But when I got that letter of interest from Zondervon Publishing House, I thought surely my mother would be proud of me at long last. So I called and told her my exciting news.

Like your mother, my mother said very little as I enthused about the publisher’s letter. Then she had to get off the phone. But I was too excited to really notice. It was her typical behavior with me, after all.

But then… 2 or 3 weeks later, I got a 50-page letter from my mother, handwritten, in her small neat handwriting, on big legal-sized paper. Her letter started off by saying that she would love to have the opportunity to tell the world her side of the story, about how horrible of a daughter/person I was… but, since she didn’t have a book in the works, she would have to write all about my faults in a letter.

NARCISSISTIC is a good word, Darlene. Like your mother, my mother obviously decided that my book was going to be all about her. But it wasn’t even going to mention her. My story was about how my 2 children had been kidnaped from me by my ex-husband, and taken out of the country ~ he had money and travel experience, working all over the world as a pipefitter on oil rigs. When I got my children back, almost 3 years later, it was like a wonderful miracle. It was also very challenging, too, because they were so little when they were taken, they didn’t remember me. They were told that I was dead! It was like getting foster children, in a way. We had been very close before my ex stole them. He told me often that I was the best mother he had ever seen. Lster, after I got the children back, he confessed to me that he had taken them for one reason only ~ because I had left him, and he wanted to hurt me as badly as he could. “I thought about killing you,” he said, matter-of-factly. “But I knew that nothing would hurt you as bad as taking your babies away.” He had always been a disinterested father at best, and even when he had them stashed thousands of miles away from me, he didn’t have to personally take care of them, as I later learned, he had them in England, and then in Canada, while he was working in Egypt.

Uhmm… do you see why I sometimes say that my life has been like a 100-car-crash on black ice in high winds and heavy fog? It’s true, almost everything that can go wrong, has gone wrong in my life… until these past eight, mostly wonderful, years! From my abusive childhood on, I was forever jumping from the frying pan into the fire, and back again. I had missed that bridge from childhood to adulthood, and every decision I made, it seemed, turned out wrong in the end… especially when it came to who I married.

So anyway, getting my children back after the long hell of not knowing where they were, how they were, or if I would ever see them again, was all that my book was going to be about. My working title of that book that never was published, was: “I’ve Got To Tell
Somebody!” Getting my children back, and then having a 3rd child after my dr. had told me I would never be able to have another baby due to my cervical cancer, was better than winning the world’s biggest lottery, and, I wanted to tell the world!

But my narcissistic mother assumed it was all going to be about HER. So she wrote me a 50 page HATE letter telling me every single thing I had ever done or said from babyhood on that was “wrong,” in her warped, twisted, hateful mind. Some of the things she complained about in that hate letter was laughable, it was so stupid. Like the time that I called my new stepsisters and stepbrothers on Christmas Day, to wish them a Merry Christmas, and to ask what they got, and tell them what I had gotten, like kids do… I was 14, and it was the first Christmas since my mother had married their father, and I wanted to spend Christmas with all of our new extended family, and had to make do with talking to them on the phone. What was so terrible about me doing that? According to my mother’s hate letter, I “should have known that they didn’t get much of anything for Christmas,” and I was being a hateful “show-off” for calling and “bragging” to them about what I had gotten under the tree that day.

Apparently, my mother must have failed to buy gifts for her new stepchildren, and used all of her, and their father’s, money, on our familyu? I’m just guessing, here… but that was always my mother’s way, blame her failings, on Lynda the Scapegoat. When people dropped by to visit, if the house was less than perfect, the fault was always “Lynda” for not doing my part~


I haven’t read the comments here yet, I wanted to address your post first, Darlene, since I relate to it so totally. I’ll come back and read everyone’s posts in a little while, they always add so much to your blogs.

Hugs to Everyone Here,


PS~ A thought about your mother threatening to sue you if you published anything negative about her in a book… I have wondered if there were a way to sue our abusive, neglective parents, for the cost of the therapy they have caused us to need, PLUS all the pain and suffering, WITH INTEREST. If my mother were to be so crass as to try to sue me for simply telling the truth about my life, then I would definitely look into filing a countersuit for the misery, and money, her years of abuse cost me.


PPS~ I mean NEGLECTFUL parents. I get too wrapped up in my writing to proofread sometimes… most times.


each time I read this blog, a fragmented memory keeps pressing through. We were used for a disowned brother’s (also a serial child molester/adult women rapist)sexual use. Every time we were used no one spoke about it. Sisters, mother, brothers, all would not look at me and when they did it was to hit or beat me. I(we) and my youngest brother were beaten a lot. This memory is speratic and felt that we needed to let you know and we think there is more healing that needs to be done in this area. Dang it I don’t want to cry. I was 5, then 6,8,9,10,11,and finally 12. I had a venerial disease when I 8-10 years old. We just don’t understand why i was beaten or that no one stood up for me or why my mom let it happen. She admitted knowing about it and she said she was sorry. Yet she made no bones about her feelings of hating me. Doesn’t this sound confusing to you as much as it does to me?


Oh Renee… it does sound very confusing, and crazy-making. How could a mother allow her own child to be abused? How could a mother HATE her own child.

I’ve been sitting here with my face in my hands, thinking about an 8 – 10 year old little girl with venarial disease. Oh it breaks my heart.

I just finished reading all the comments here and I’m amazed at how many of us had the same kind of “mother.”

Back in the late 1970s when I was living in Houston I met a woman through a church I was going to, who told me about finding out that her first husband had been sexually abusing her young daughter for years. Her daughter was an adolescent when she finally told her mother what was going on. This woman, this “mother,” told me that her immediate reaction to learning that her little girl had been sexually abused in every way imaginable by her own father, was to feel…. are you ready for this?…. a huge sense of RELIEF.

Yes, that’s right, this woman, this so-called mother, was vastly RELIEVED to learn that her husband had been sexually abusing their little daughter for many years. WHY? Because, she explained to me, her husband had put her down all through their marriage, calling her a “whore” and worse, because she had confided in him the fact that, back when she was a teenager, she had gotten involved sexually with her own cousin, a boy who was her own age. Because of her past “incestous” affair, her husband put her down for years, calling her a slut.

“But what a relief it was to me to realize that he was worse than I was,” this woman told me. “I may have had an affair with my own cousin when we were teenagers, but my husband was doing something far worse, he was sexually abusing our own daughter.”

HEL-LO??? How narcissistic can a mother get? To feel RELIEF upon learning that her little daughter has been violated, raped, abused, by her own dad for years and years, because “well now that I know he is in fact a worse person than me, that takes the sting out of his calling me a slut.” Good Grief.

Several years later, I had a tv talk show on one day, and the topic was child sexual abuse. I was astonished to see that the guests on the show that day was this woman, and her now-grown daughter. The show’s hostess was talking with the grown daughter about the terrible emotional toll that being sexually abused by her own father, on an almost daily basis, had taken on her mental health as she was growing up. Then the hostess turned to the mother and asked her, “What was your reaction when you first learned that your daughter was being so horribly abused by your own husband, her father.” And the reply, right there in front of her daughter and for all the world to hear: “Well, my first reaction was to feel a great sense of RELIEF.”

WHY God allows some people to have children is a complete mystery to me.



Lynda – love your post, #57!! Well said!!


You’ve obviously hit a nerve with this posting, Darlene – in a very good way. So many of us need the validation that it was them, not us. It enrages me and upsets me that I, you and so many of us desperately reached out (some still are) for the love, nurturing and unconditional accepted we needed and DESERVED from our mothers – yet there was nothing there.

I told people, when my NMother died, that I was crying for the relationship I deserved & never had with her. Of course my Nmother had done a lot of convincing others that I was the crazy one; like all pathologicals do. My NMother died but the mother I should have had never existed.

My therapist pointed out to me my NMother’s pathological ENVY of me over & over until I understood and believed it. My life, to her, was not my own. Ever. She believed it was a construction where I literally got up every day and figured out what to do or say to upset her. I went through 12 years of infertility treatments without ever telling her. When I got disabled she told my ex to leave me because I was now “useless to him.” I understand that my mother was very abused herself but, to my mind, she just passed it on. Whereas I knew something was deeply askew with my thinking and worked hard on piecing myself back together so I did not pass on the abuse. For that reason, it will be impossible for me to ever fully respect my NMother.

We deserved better. All of us.


Hi Darlene,

Thanks for encouraging me to post comments. As a therapist, what I notice in both the original post and the comments is how important our mothers are in forming who we become as adults. Whether or not your mother was or is a narcissist, what I am reminded of, as a new parent myself, is how important all of my actions are to my child’s development and how as adults we can take actions and responsibility to make changes in our lives.


#60, example of how people become fools by comparing ourselves with each other nad coming up with a “standard”. They have no standard of love/hate, good/bad!!
Classic, though, no? Someone else’s pain takes my pain away! WOW!~ What was she doing listening to HIS WARPED view of her anyway?? She didn’t understand her own abuse and pain!

“My NMother died but the mother I should have had never existed.”
“My life, to her, was not my own. Ever.”
HOW TRUE!! KEY concept, here!
I know a woman who says this of her own sister-in-law, that “She lives her life through her daughter!” What a thing for a relative to say openly to others! The daughter, born with physical challenges, died recently, of cancer before age 50. Not a great experience!


Hello – I’m new around here. Hope it’s okay if I rant a little? ;D

When i told my mom I’d experienced sexual abuse it was around seven years after the event. I’d begun experiencing PTSD – as guys became interested in me my mind seemed to break and i had ‘episodes’ – kind of fits i suppose you’d call them. They were indicative of deeper issues clearly from the reaction of observers and when mom asked what I was doing I told her what I thought it might be. She didn’t believe me first. Then she suggested I go to a ‘looney bin’ then. As this frightened me (I was 14yrs) I didn’t try to talk to her about it again for years. When I had a complete break down and got sectioned (20yrs) she never acknowledged that it was part of the reason, even when my psychologist asked her to participate in family counselling (me, her and my estranged father were supposed to discuss the abuse but neither turned up) Denial, denial denial – unsurprisingly ive suffered dissociative I.D disorder – runs in the family!. Later, I tried to explain after two suicide attempts and still; silence or a grinding jaw of discomfort. She simply will not accept such things happened to me, even now and I’m 39 in April! I stopped talking to her about it years ago though now – Can’t bear the thought that she thinks I’m attention seeking. Like I even needed attention that much?

Anyway – glad I found this blog. Rant over. 😉 Shah

Renee-A Ressurected Spirit
March 10th, 2011 at 8:34 am

Thanks Lynda
We still feel sick to my stomach and the lonelyness and confussion keeps coming back. We took care of it in counseling and I felt healed but the girls still hurt. I think what helps us, is that there are more tragic abuses other people have suffered, and mine wasn’t so bad. That helps to think that way. When I was in my 20’s my medical doctor diagnoised me with the venerial disease. I remember showing my mom my vigina and she smacked me and said it was because I didn’t keep myself clean down there. I beleived her because I rarely took a bath. If you took a bath that meant any one could come in and sexually assualt me. So I quite taking baths. A teacher who I dearly loved and was so nice to me pulled me aside one day and said the other classmates dont want me in there class because I smelled so bad. Well DUH! I told her I was afraid to take abath. So she told me how to take a “sponge bath”. I didn’t stink again! Back to the medical Dr. He was awesome. He felt body, soul, and mind have to be healthy in order for a person to be healthy. So he started counseling me (by the way made everyone mad at that clinic) he brought out a book and had me look at all the pictures of venerial diseases. I picked out the one I had and he had tears in his eyes because I knew then he beleived my memories. He told me I could only get it through intercourse. Finally someone beleived me! That day was probably one of my happiest because I was validated and I knew I was going to get the three of us some help.

Renee-A Ressurected Spirit
March 10th, 2011 at 8:46 am

Welcome Shah,
You have found the bestest and the safest place to talk! We listen, we love, we talk, we encourage, we learn, and we give hope. I think Im talking out of turn because this is Darlene’s Blog, but that is what we do and welcome.


Hi Lynda
~ Thank you for sharing this story about your mothers reaction to your good news and how she squished you down so badly. (and also the story of your kids getting taken from you ~ you’ve had a difficult life to say the least!) I remember the confusion I felt when my mother made her statement about suing me. I was so “in the fog” that at first I just could not comprehend what the heck she was talking about.
And the fog lifts in stages ~ it takes a long time. It was about 7 months later or so that I got the idea that I should be the one suing her! (just as you said here) that if she sued me that I would check into suing her for a few things too. Wow.. and that thought was so empowering because I was validating myself, that I was not the doing something wrong here!
And that is how I feel about it today ~ I write about MY life and how I healed.
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Renee
I am so sorry that all of that happened to you. What you have written about your mother admitting knowing and saying she was sorry, but still hating you IS confusing ~ you are not alone in that confusion. None of us understand why these things happened and we were not protected, and we all seek to understand. One of the most important messages that I have on this blog is that we don’t have to understand THEM. It is so important to validate ourselves, believe ourselves, KNOW that it was never something we asked for, or deserved. The abuse was wrong. Healing started for me when I finally realized that it was not about me, but about them.
thank you for sharing your stories; there is so much healing when we share and when we read what happened to others.
AND, thank you for welcoming Shah ~ you are not speaking out of turn. 🙂
Hugs, Darlene


Hi Barbara,
I did a lot of grieving for the mother I never had too, and I also realized that I never had the mother I should have had and that I never would. About respect ~ I don’t respect my mother at all. I gave her the chance to have a relationship with me; one that was based on mutual respect. She didn’t talk to me anymore after that. I had to take a good look at my definition of respect and realized that I had been taught the meaning of that word, WRONG. Respect is a two way street. I am not obligated to respect. I am not obligated to love either.
Thanks for being here and for sharing,
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Brian
Welcome to EFB!
What you wrote here is foundational for healing. I talk about re-parenting myself a lot. As an adult, I can do that now. I can do for myself what was never done for me. My parents ‘failed’ me. But I no longer have to live under their authority. In realizing that what happened to me was beyond my control then, I was able to take my life back. I can and I did make those changes, and I am free now.
Thanks for being here.

Hi Shah,
Welcome to emerging from broken;
Rant away! I do it all the time! Very telling that they didn’t show up to discuss the abuse, isn’t it?
Glad that you are here! Please feel welcome to share as much as you like.
Hugs, Darlene



I’ve got one for ya. As if I wasn’t already frustrated, confused, angry, or just tired enough of all of my mom’s lying and criticizing, and her finally blowing up and calling me a liar and telling people that I forcefully ejected her from my house by telling her to “get the hell out” when I did no such thing; then writing me a letter on facebook about what a nasty person I am and she is “done” with me, I got a package in the mail yesterday from her. She sent me a pair of khaki pants that I guess she picked up at a thrift store somewhere with a note that just said, “these have not been washed”. What the HELL? OMG, I have to admit, I am reeling with anger, confusion, frustration, and mostly just a feeling of becoming a repeated victim of her Narcissistic whims and notions. She said she was done with me! Why can’t she just be DONE with me? Why try to suck me back into her maniacal little world for another go round on the same nauseating ride? I could use some encouraging words on this, ladies (and gents if there are any out there). I feel like the last couple months without her have truly been the most peaceful months of my entire life. TRULY. Nothing about me wants her back in my life. I don’t even want to engage her in a conversation about why I don’t want her back. I feel like that would be like opening a small trap door at the bottom of a swimming pool. There would be a sudden wave and no way of closing the door back up. Please, pray for me during this horrendously confusing time. It comes at a most inconvenient time when I’m getting ready to have surgery again and I’m at the height of my anxiety about my recovery from a broken leg. I just want peace for the sake of all that is good and holy! How do you suggest I get it?



I feel ashamed right now that I went ot a Christian college and majored in Psychology and they were so concerned about the religious warfare in that field at the time, that we sat around arguing wheter or not it was SIN to be depresseed. How would someone NOT be depressed after being abused in these ways? Why were we not told these kinds of stories?? I feel so cheated educationally. Talk about hiding reality! It happens in colleges as well, at least in mine in the 1980’s.


Hi Kellie
This sounds like one of those “apologies” without actually apologizing. A very typical tactic to regain control. The confusion, anger and frustration is all normal. The fear of falling back into the trap is normal too! But remember that you have a choice now about what YOU want to do. You don’t have to engage with her at all, if you choose not to. You can send the pants back, (without any explanation) or just ignore that she sent them. You and do whatever you want to do, what ever supports YOU Kellie.
Keep us posted about your surgery and all the best thoughts and prayers for you!
hugs, Darlene

From what I understand, schools are no different now then they were then. When I took my training I learned that everything is about diagnosis and treatment. (none of which gets to the root of the problem.) What worked for me, what enabled me to heal was getting to the root of where all my depressions etc. started. That is why I write this blog.
Your training however, was not your fault and therefore not your shame!
Thanks for sharing!
Hugs, Darlene


Yes, it is not my shame, but a sad waste of time in some ways.
We just watched The Wizard of Oz again last night and I saw the demeaning way that aunt and uncle treated Dorothy and the hired hands, and I guess that we are just supposed to admire these hardworking people. And all she could do is dream of going back there! They treated her like a young child with no sense of her own. The movie presented no reason why she should want to return to that environment. Big deal that Aunt Em sat with her when she had the measles, the professor was WRONG when he told her that auntie had been very kind to her, that was further manipulation by the adults around her. The aunt didn’t have one nice thing to say to her until she was ill…
Oh, and the aunt couldn’t tell the neighbor lady what she has really t hought of her all these years because the aunt was a “christian”–that is a social group that tells you how you can think and act–so the aunt had agreed to be emotionally abused her whole life and treated Dorothy in the same way, and when Dorothy ran away from home, all she wanted was to return, but not get healthy!

But, Dorothy was not a child, she was an adult, too, and should have had more to do in her life that balance on the pigpen wall and dream of returning to that environment to play with a dog.

I now realize that my first impression of Over the Rainbow was accurate, a girl dreaming of a place where there is relational peace.


The wizard of oz is a great example of what we are talking about, isn’t it? And it takes some coming out of the fog to even recognize the stuff that you have written here. the age of Dorothy is not known, but the oldest that anyone thinks she was supposed to be according to the information that we do have about the original book, is only 12 and in that case it is fair to think that her only concern is to play. The thing that strikes me about the story is that her life with her abusive aunt was BETTER then the alternative, which was to be lost in the “wilderness” meeting up with witches and other scary things that she had to deal with. Maybe the underlying point of the whole movie is abusive ~ to teach kids that they better accept and respect the elders in their lives, no matter how abusive they are, OR face the alternatives. Face possibly dying. It’s really sick and the more I think about this the more horrified I am that this is a movie that we pass on to children from generation to generation! It is like a “training video ~ teaching kids to just accept and be dang happy that they even have a home!
Thanks for bringing this up Sheryl!
hugs, Darlene


” It is like a “training video ~ teaching kids to just accept and be dang happy that they even have a home!”

My husband just kept saying over and over that they never said a nice thing to her the whole time…and it made him want to cry, and yes, it is a training video
once I discovered emotional health and relational health, nothing else matters before that!


I was working in a mental institution not that long ago, and one of the inmates, in his 50’s, was talking about the abuse he suffered from his family as a child, and how that one day God will make all these things right, and that God will take care of it. I thought, “Now here is some real faith, and the real reason for his depression…”


If this doesn’t say it all, at least I could imagine that it would:
“just a feeling of becoming a repeated victim of her Narcissistic whims and notions.”
Don’t open the trap door. Keep reminding yourself of why the last few months have been peaceful for you! Create your own environment and pace and keep yourself there.

Renee-A Ressurected Spirit
March 10th, 2011 at 2:55 pm

I did something totally different and it may not work for a lot of people. I set up the opportunity to confront her in a non violent way. I told her I was going to talk and she was going to listen. I didn’t scream and yell, because once you do that you just handed the power over to them. And they are going to expect you to loose control. So when I didn’t and I just spoke very meaningfully and I kept to the point of the subject she sat in surpirse and truely listened. Or you can take those pants send them back with a note that says, PLEASE WASH BEFORE YOU SEND ME ANYTHING. Or just don’t have anything to do with her and love yourself.


Sheryl – have you read the book THE WIZARD OF OZ AND OTHER NARCISSISTS? Might be worth a look for you.


“I am not obligated to respect. I am not obligated to love either.”

Brilliant Darlene!! You ROCK!


NO! I have not heard of that book! Thanks for mentioning it!!


I love so much that you pointed out the fact that abusers don’t abuse in public….and therefore they show that they know they are doing wrong.

That is such a powerful statement, especially for those who are struggling with guilt feelings over what happened to them, and for people who never heard an admittance of guilt from their abuser….the private abuse, that was the admission. Wow.


Tracie ~ This really hit me too … the fact that my mother hid it from others on purpose shows that she knew it was wrong. With that said though, in company she would often abuse as well, but done in a way that “I took it the wrong way” or “I was only joking.” NOT JOKING!! I know joking, and her abuse was not in jest – it was MEAN! :o)


Hi Everyone,
I have read these comments with interest and have spent the time since exploring what this means in my own life. As I often do, when I am trying to get a grasp on something, I explore it in poetry. Here is my result – I wanted to share it with you all because I think so many of you will relate to it and it may help us… who knows!

The eyes reflect totality of deep incomprehension –
No lashing pain, nor fearsome ire, such blasphemy absolve:
No Universal other centre, nor other blazing sun
‘Bout whom each puny planet must revolve.

Day by day, reinforcing such self conceited belief
Each moment twisted carefully to gratify oneself –
Stroking ego’s ceaseless thirst, fanning flames of self approval
Preening gaudy feathers of delusional soul wealth.

Blind devotion, servile adoration taken from each one,
For wealth of gold and precious jewels is just what‘s rightly due,
Demanded accolades of fool’s gold and coloured glass
That will vanish in the dust of what is true.

For what seems to be sun’s blinding light is but a candle’s flame
That splutters dimly ‘midst bright shining stars,
Though gilded frames surround the polished mirror cracks and falls,
Lying shattered on the sands of false regard.
To all of our narcissistic abusers – you are no sun, and one day, one day, your world will crash down around you. And despite what you did, I pity you in that day.

Renee-A Ressurected Spirit
March 12th, 2011 at 6:46 am

Dear Zoe,
Sad but true and well written. Thank you.


Hi Tracie,
I asked my therapist how I would have ever known that what my babysitter was doing to me was wrong when I was so young. He said that children pick up on the guilt and fear of getting caught that the abusers have, little motions such continual glancing at the door, or the windows to make sure curtains are drawn… little things like that. I could feel my eyes get WIDE, it was so shocking to realize that was true. My mother never beat me in front of anyone but my siblings. My mother did offer me to men, but she was careful who she did that in front of too. There are many things that abusers don’t try to hide. It really helped me to remember the things that they DID try to hide.
Thanks for being here and for your comments
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Paulette
Yes. Mine too. It was still emotional and psychological abuse. (and she found a way to make it my own fault, OR as you say tell me she was kidding) It was more of a “tearing you down while smiling”, when others were around. Humiliation, putting me in my place.. and yes it is MEAN.
My father on the other hand was a passive abuser. He didn’t pay any attention to me at all. We see those kinds of parents all the time and it is no less damaging and really , it is mean too!
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Zoe,
Thanks for posting this beautiful Poem
I love it’s deep and rich tones and all the imagery; thank you so much for sharing it here.
Hugs, Darlene


About the pants….

There’s a new game my mom is playing now. She has my dad call. My dad who I love but, honestly, we had maybe five phone conversations in the last six or seven years before all of this drama began back in December. Used to be, my mom called me daily. We usually talked for 30 to 60 minutes, and she did a lot of complaining about my dad and others. I did my fair share of complaining too, so I’m not saying I’m perfect. The point is, she NEVER encouraged my dad and me to be close. Now, suddenly, she has got him calling to check on me. Now, I hear her on the other end of the line feeding him questions, comments, and jokes she wants him to pass along. It has happened several times including today. I don’t have the heart to say to my dad, please stop calling me. But, seriously! This hard, hard woman. She told me she was done with me! Why can’t she just be done? I am having privacy manager installed on my phone this week, so they will have to identify themselves before their private number will ring through to the house. I think I’ll be a little more proactive and just start emailing my dad on a daily basis, so he knows how I am. It gives him a chance to talk, but keeps her heinous voice out of my ears. 😛



Kellie, that is crazy-making behavior.

Oh, that reminds me, I need to call my daughter today… 😉


Hi Kellie
Something that I have noticed that happens when we draw boundaries is that people change their tactics in an attempt to “throw us off”. Very often it works too, because we are so used to them acting a certain way. This “changing tactics” can go on for a long time too. I get this image in my mind of the witch in the wizard of OZ melting when the water was thrown on her… as being how the abusers feel when we take our lives back… they writhe in pain because they have so much of their identity in controlling us.
Hugs, Darlene


Yes, it has been my experience too, that abusers change their tactics when we begin to be healthy enough to set some boundaries. It’s a big game to them… like chess. Once we learn to anticipate and block their favorite moves, then they find other moves, other ways to throw us off, so they can achieve their end goal.. Their goal is one-up-manship. It’s all about WINNING, it’s never about CARING.


Lynda, LOL. Yes, crazy making is exactly what I thought too. In my research on BPD (borderline personality disorder), they call it Gaslighting after some movie in the 40s where a man treated his wife this way to make her think she was nuts.

Hopeful it will all turn out somehow.

BTW, Had my surgery this morning. Hallelujah! It’s over and went well. I’m having quite a bit of pain, but I also get a lot of pain meds too. Hope everyone has a great week!


Kellie, your surgery was this morning? Oh, ouch. I’m glad it’s over and went well; I’m saying a prayer for your speedy recovery.

Gaslighting… I saw that old movie several years ago, and it was an eye-opener.

Take care of you, Kellie. Sending you a big [[HUG]],

Renee-A Ressurected Spirit
March 15th, 2011 at 7:57 am

Hope your feeling better this morning, get well, Big hugs (but not where it hurts)


Hi Kellie!
I am really glad to hear that the surgery went well! Hope you have a speedy recovery!!
Hugs, Darlene


i just read Lynda’s comment and feel a little SICK…. om my god thats shocking re Mother was relieved to find her husband had done worse…stuff the kid he was abusing…. i think my parents may be onto me posting comment on faceBook re this stuff – as my father was a tad distantly cold & my mother didnt jump on the phone… ..ts HARD when we ALL Cant See things.. but Lynda – that takes the cake.

Im begining to feel like Narcasism & forms of Autism eg Aspergergers might be related…as i think my mothers reaction to my father interfereing with one of her daughters..was utter shock horror then YOUR LYING…. with absolutely no capacity to think or feel for my sister – as to how SHE may be feeling. SO SELFISHLY ORIENTATED….. i have said before that my mother didnt want us being HAPPy or performing beter than her at anything. I guess her identity got lost in BRAGING about having 6 kids – but dear God why did that ever happen because she actually did NOT manage that very well and totally LOST IT causeing lots and lots of damage. I recon a lot of my physical problems most probably stem from deep tissue damage – as well as the emotional & psychological abuse of course. People too often think that if one has a psychological problem that it can be FIXED. I think so much undiagnosed physical problems get shockingly over looked as the root of things isnt always psychological – Just trying to balance or add to this stuff here.
and yes also Lynda the changing of tactics is a big thing.. always making an excuse to blame.. shift responsibility.
Someone once said that we all react or act out of many things. a MASSIVE thing for me was hearing a question that i now love to ask myself.
WHAT IS MY WORSE FEAR ????????????????

I think if my mother thought to ask herself this question
1 – she would realise its HER reacting
2 – that shes in defensive survival mode
3- finding what WE fear most can lead us to eventually wondering what or how that can impact or affect others.

SOMEtimes our worst fear is imagined – other times its spot on & a reality others rarely experience.

What is my worst fear when my mother controls me.
Its physical pain, humiliation, rejection, public shaming, relentless verbal dihorea or the silent treatment.. its her HATEING ME when ive busted my guts to try to help her.
SO now my worst fear has changed.
Im not putting myself in a position to be humiliated, publically shamed.
Sometimes removing oneself is the healthiest choice.. like my choice to NEVER go to their place again ALONG – cos i dont drive so i cant remove myself from them – im stuck & Cornered.

Im so thankful this forum exist for people to learn from eachj other… sadly there are SO MANY of US outthere… but i find it distressing yet a sense of hope comes in me to see living pweople write some of their experiences… makes me feel more i have feel so incrdeibly alone all these years because people dont wanna talk about it. Eventually the anger subsides when you realise you have your power back…and that you understand more about what happened.
i think my mother go into AUTO PIOLET MODE – came to enjoy the power over us.. was a chronic shocker what it did to us – im amazed most of use are alive…. It tells me my mother – felt abused herself and chose this path as a survival mode… i just dont feel so sorry for her because at times i KNOW shes known what she was doing and to CAE – is her opening many rtimes to put the boot in more. I think she is SICK because when i was talking to her about my younger brother having sex with the youngets sister… she started to cry. i said i tried to explain to my little sister that if HE did that to her – well someone MUST have done it to him first cos he was TOO young to even know certain words or to even have an inclination or any idea what to do…. so my mother sits at the table crying saying : I love you because you care about your little brother like that”. …. I think she missed the point completely… like …um…her mercy is displaced. Oh she CAN be kind.. to others and others kids.. but in the position of feeling SO responsible for her 6 kids… well she needed help but pride had her push people away – even left boxes of food to rot in a corner because she said I DONT WANT YOUR HELP we dont need it.. clearly we DID. So a root cause i recon with my mother is PRIDE – she just WONT BE TOLD she is wrong in any way shape or form. Then she gets haughty eyes, a tone in her voice arrrghhh its aweful.
The sadest part for abusers….
I once used to say I dont wanna die with all this unresolved stuff.
Someone else said – “well you dont wanna LIVE WITH IT EITHER – do you?
I realised wow…..I was shocked by this. i never saw an end to things.

well for abusers … i can see now that they have a lot of life yet to be lived where the chances of getting sprung, found out, challenged, for truth to be brought to light… that must be absolutel hell to be living with that.
But for some abusers – this is the scarey bit.. they get more skillful at thier craft of deception, power control etc etc etc etc etc … i feel for those out there being targeted because they are just innocent little kids… Abused people dont always go on to abuse… Not when they realise they have a CHOICE, When they realise there is ANOTHER WAY or different ways to cope with stuff. We can educate people and some will never wanna change.
Oh GOD I pray for the world that people will want to find a better way, to wanna swallow their selfish pride, will wanna see past themselves, they will realise what they are doing and the shocking damage.
I can forgive because we all stuff up and every human being is capable of shocking things… but you dont have to trust… because trust has to be earned.
Emerging from brokeness is a Journey. It takes sooooo much time with some things. Its taken me sooooo much time to heal a bit….. Even today i was thinking about how my mother was when her parents died within 2 or 3 months of each other. she was SO HAPPY… I thought when my parents i would be SO HAPPY TOO oh NOT that they were dead – but that the abusers are out of my life for good. We still have the records playing over and over and over in our heads. eg. recently i started to PAINT Pictures and i heard my mothers voice in my head – anticipating her reaction to it.. that ITS CRAP _ LIKE A KID WOULD DRAW!…. so demons can still exist – and overcoming them i think can be in RE WRITING THE SCRIPTS. Its standing strong even when the abusers are still alive. WE have to do a lot of the thinking, healing, changing. NOT to suit them – but so we are properly healed. eg I sincerely forgive them… but i dont think i can EVER FULLY TRUST THEM.. NOT EVER…

Hope that makes sense


Hi Kathy,
Thanks for your contribution to this post!
It was very important, although difficult for me, to stop focusing on the why the abuser did stuff, and why the abuser was an abuser, and why why why about them. I was always thinking about how my mother (and father) felt, what had gone wrong in her life, how could I make her feel loved enough to love me. I always knew that my parents had less then perfect childhoods. But in the end, it did not help me to understand what happened to me and it certainly didn’t excuse what happened to me. My freedom came from really validating what happened to me, and how I had become so lost. I stopped thinking (just for long enough to see clearly) about them. My healing came from my understanding and acceptance of the truth about what happened to me. And then realizing all the lies I believed about myself, and changing those beliefs. Healing is very possible, and you make great points about physical illness manifesting; I agree that it very often overlooked!
Thank you again for sharing.
hugs, Darlene



Your mother’s reaction to your book is selfish and painful..
How I feel for you not having someone so close to say “I’m so proud,
you will do well”..It’s painful.deeply painful to not that..Everyone
needs someone to cheer them on and encourage them..You do have a gift for writing and a genuine care for others that comes out through all our words.

What came to mind is how my mom reacted to my situation in 2009: where my boss took over my life. verbally,mentally, emotionally tortured me .. When finally I was rescued and was in a safe place that I can tell people I was back to wv.. I let her know .She didnt ask me how I was. .. She didn’t say she was sorry I was so tortured..She only asked me if I was going to seek counseling and said She didnt want me to go and if i talked to anyone not to talk about the past.. .when we were little.

I told her at that time part of counselng may ask about the whole past..She became angry and told me if I would go to counseling dont bother calling her..FUnny thing she has managed to call me to lash out and warn and tell me how i deserved the treatment i got from my boss..

Because of this and ways siblings came after me I pushed aside my healing and tried to work but it wasn’t possible to concentrate..all that happened in 2009 kept coming up ..I found it hard to trust .. to believe anyone.. I was afraid to go out..I had to seek healing and admit am not able to heal alone.

I had to choose between losing my connection to dysfunction or moving on to healing.. I chose the second but so many times .especially on holidays I become tempted. .to give in..I know its because I havent yet let healng inflesh in e ..its in my mind but not yet in my soul.. so i have the wars going on in my mind between my desire to heal and my desire for the dysfunctional family to change. Letting go is hard..

Renee/A Resurrected Spirit
May 28th, 2011 at 6:51 pm

If I can comment, I as a child had to come to a point where I needed to let my family go. I was 17. I remember where I was and the conversation my inner girl had. In order to change my future I was going to have to make changes to my present so my past would not look like it had all my life. I cut my family and friends off. I made it a slow process so I wouldn’t feel the pain so much. Yet I remember heart breaking as it was I also seperated in emotional way and mental when I was a kid. I hope you will find your way and Im glad you chose to heal. Each day I read Darlenes blog and everyones input has been vital to what I am learning. I have been have a few ahhhh moments concerning Gods stand and the evil of the abuser. The same came to light about the misconception I have had about my mother. She was a lot more evil than I gave her credit for. I had this misconstrude idea she was a victim of demestic violence and was to weak to get out of the relationship and it was why she was to weak to stand up to the older brother that she allowed to sexually use me at will. In reality she was as sick as my dad. I have seven brothers and there are 4 girls. One of my older brothers (he came for a visit a couple of days ago) and he said he wished he had gotten the oppurtunity to tell my parents what they did and how it distroyed all of our lives. I smiled and said well, when I found out my dad was dying I made him sit on my couch and I told him every thing that happened to me and where the hell was he my dad, my protector. I did not back down, scared but I knew I was going to have only one chance. It was his business what he did with that information but in a sence I felt a little freeer. My mom I had been working on a relationship with her for years and when she told me she didn;t have long I asked her to be honest with me. Then I asked all the WHY’s I needed to. My brother had no idea anyone in our family had done that and was shocked to hear I did. He was glad he needed to know someone in this messed up family had the guts to do it. I did it for me and my healing and if it made his weight a little lighter then that was fine by me. I have family to this day that treat me horribly. That is fine their choice because each day that goes by I know Im the better person and far the stronger one. If sibiling cannot face the truth it’s because they don’t nfeel strong enought to go against the tide. I myself would love to do an intervention on my sister who I have hated for all that she did to me when we were little. Why? She is a drug addict/alcholic. She is weaker of the two of us. I beleive I would be able to help because I know her past. Everyone around her loves her and they don’t want to hurt her,me I don’t love her, yet I don’t want her to die but to be stronger. She has ran away from the horrors of her past for way to long. It takes a strong person Joy to acheive what your longing for. And what you want is your right to have……a full healthy life.
Hugs and a loving smile..


Hi Joy,
I read this post and got all distracted ~ I have been working on a post about the heartbreaking treatment that we endure, and this comment came in and it fueled my passion and angered me at the same time. How can this happen? Wow. And this is a prime example of what I am talking about!
Thanks for sharing,
Hugs, Darlene


WOW, I am so proud of you! I can HEAR the changes. Good for you and thankyou so much for sharing!
Love Darlene


Hi Darlene

Its Sarah and although I dont post very often because I am usually busy working I happened to land on this post as I was googling “narcissistic mothers devalue and disregard”. Its my birthday on Monday and its exactly 1 year since I published my book on Dark Souls. The same book that my mother who also wouldn’t read it said “Why are you writing a book, its not like anyone will ever read it”.

She also want onto say “Its not like you have ever written a book before” to which I replied “but mum I wrote a book a couple of years ago, remember the newspaper article on Dad” to which she replied “Oh I forgot”.

I played my own mothers abuse down in the book for legal reasons plus it would have destracted from and story and its more about why certain types attract abusers and what they do. However its my humble opionion that depending on how narcissistic our parents spouses are they will have one or two motives for us not wanting to write about them. The covert narcissistic type who has been abusive as was my mothers case will as you so rightly say be more concerned with “being exposed for the kind of mother she really was”. On the flip side my father is more sociopathic and overtly narcissistic and an article was written about him being a womaniser in a newspaper spread a couple of years ago. He painted him in a very poor light and the newspaper wouldn’t print the article without corroborating the story with him. He was so proud of the fact that he was in the paper, photo an all and despite being painted as a lethario he actually phoned up all his mates to tell them that it was in the papers.

When I finally did get my book published which incidentally was not al about her and went over to drop a copy in my mind just to get some kind of validation that I had done something good in her eyes for once. She told me in no uncertain terms that I wasn’t allowed round that day as she was busy. It was then that I decided I didn’t need her validation. Incidentally the book has helped many people but I have never seen my mother since then we made an agreement there and then to have no more contact with each other. My healing came when she finally admitted that all of the false beliefs I had about myself were her own projected beliefs she had put onto me and that by being around me it reminded her of how much she had messed up. She admitted that if she had been a better role model ro listened to me as a child when I had sexual abuse I may not have attracted the psychopath I met talk about in the book. Although to be fair she put most of the blame on my father.

Darlene, often as children we overcompensate and try so hard to get validation indirectly from our parents. That which we can never get from them because they are disordered. However, have heart remember that when writing a book our beliefs we have about ourselves about not being loved or validated by our parents may never go away when we write a book but it comes from within. So go ahead and write your book for YOU! I wish you lots of success because I am sure your book will help lots of people.
Love Sarah


Hi Sarah,
Thank you for sharing and for your encouragement, it is great to hear from you!
My mothers reaction to my book idea was a huge help to me towards understanding that everything was all about her and would never really be about me in her eyes. I never was heard, but it matters not anymore. My beliefs about myself as a result of my parents disregard of me are all resolved now and I live my life in the truth and not in the lies I used to believe.
Instead of writing that book, I ended up writing this blog, which is about to be published in a book form and it is far more comprehensive then the book I was planning to write when she treatened to sue me. I am pleased with the results that I have in my life and I didn’t realize that I would be so much better off without her destructive influence on my life.

Congratulations on your book too! Isn’t it wonderful when we go ahead and do our thing in spite of the risk! Then there is healing for everyone.
Hugs, Darlene


Hi Darlene

Your welcome, and great news on the blog book. Things work out for the best I think. When I was going to write I was actually writing a book on spirituality and ended up writing one on on psychopaths and narcs instead. I have this theory that the universe doesn’t always give us what we want but what we need. and that it always knows whats best for us (winks).

As for finding your blog again. It was strange. I was on google as I said in previous post and I had just opened a birthday card from my mum. Two years ago when I was in the pits with nothing after what happened with the pyschopath she loved it! I got a beautiful hand made card from her saying I was the best daughter in the world with a lovely expensive gift. Why because I was penniless and broken exactly how she likes me so she can feel good about herself.

This year when things are finally starting to going well for me and I am in an emotionally strong good place, busy with work and so on, I got a card from some any old shop, no present and “a hope things are better for you”

We will never be good enough in their eyes.

I am sure the book will do really well


I totally get that! I know exactly what you mean about your mom being happier when you are in struggle. I have found all abusers/controllers to be exactly like that! (so they can feel good about themselves; isn’t that sad when a parent has to feel good about themselves by viewing YOU as less then them? That was the story of my life. Oh I could write 10 more blog posts about this subject! LOL
Hugs, Darlene


I can so relate to Sarah!!! My mother also took joy in my misery!!


Well theres alot of projection that goes on with narcissists. I didn’t know what projection was until I had therapy and researched my book. Because they thrive on feeling miserable they tend to “”dump their unowned misery and feelings on the ones they most like to abuse. I remember having a conversations with my mum once in the kitchen the words went something like this. “You are a terrible parent, you never do things properly, I am fed up of listening to all of your stuff. You have never grown up and you will you never sort your shit out.” What was interesting was when I actually write it down there was only one grain of truth or hook to get you sucked in in their words. In my mothers case it was “I am tired of listening to your stuff.”, she was being honest. The rest was talking about herself. Usually after the relationship you end up taking on their feelings if your not careful.

I found a really good exercise you can do via another therapist. I use it when coaching abused women that came to see me who have had narcissistic abusers . the exercise is to write down what their narcissistic spouse/mum/dad had said to them and then make a list of it on a piece of paper i.e. worthless, stupid, crazy, good for nothing, fat ugly etc etc. Below that you make a list of how you feel about yourself when you are away from your abuser i.e. happy, healthy, sane and so on. I

Draw a line between the two. On the top list write their name and on the bottom list write yours. It suddenly all starts to make sense and your conversations with them are never the same again!


I just wanted to simply say, thankyou for this community, I havent left this site all day! Im exhausted from reading LOL, I look forward to followingup a number of posts! 🙂

My MOM, may be ND too??? Im getting to know her in my later years, I visit her abroad onca a year. My father is ND, maybe she adoptd some of his cruel behaviour to survive? Im confused.

After the age of 5, I didnt have my mother around, she fell ill. Although my first reunion was in the year 2004, after 20years. We have an ok relationship, Im always trying to display the love of jesus over her hollow sweetly-coated words. Ive always been protective of her, because of her tragetic life/violent spouse.

This year, Ive recived new levels of healing along with deep acheing angry towards my mom for the first time ever: I have concluded that she is selfish! and i intially felt horrible for feeling this way towards her. But im being strong, Truth is emerging…over the years-my mother had many countless opportunties to return to me, but I see now, that she never made any real effort to FIGHT FOR ME, it makes me emotionally-ill (being a mother myself) how my mother could live in another nation, away from her children very wellknowing that they were living in the hands of an abusive/unstable man, she could have protected me, and also saved me from dreaded housework & motherly-responsibilities BUT she didnt!….it really makes no sense, but to accept the truth, which is heartBreaking…

I can hear my neglected-innerChilds painful cry, (little Tiff) wants answers: “have you ever considered the suffering Ive been thru? where were you all those years?..and wheres my thankyou/respect for caring for your 4children & husband?” …Im over the whole fear that I will hurt her, I know like usual, as soon I try to express any of my past– she will take over with her sob stories….I just cant get my head around this: where was she when all this abuse was going on, I was only a child.

so many lies still in the dark….you know I want my mind to dance and my heart to sing in the presence of my mum and family…I look forward to this day- sigh 🙂

Love & Hugs Tiff


Welcome Tiff,
Your in a safe place here. I hope you can find comfort here and a way to strenghten your voice. We are here to lean, grow, and mourn, and we learn to laugh again. So welcome!


Good morning Renee,

Thankyou for your warm post, it seems Ive come to the right place!

I like the women I have become, and Im very much peaceful when Im away from close family members. So, Ive placed a healthy distance from each and one of them, to protect myself. And it seems to be working fine, and Im a better wife & mother for it. Yet, I need to strengthen my inner voice with my mother: move into real dialogue, knock her out of denial, so I know truth, the truth will set me completly free!! I than will know where I stand with my mother: if there is any sense or hope in restoring our Mother-Daughter relationship.

Wishing you, a love-filled day


Hi Tiffany!
You are in the right place! One of the things that I got stuck on was trying to figure out what was “wrong” with my parents. I have written a lot about it in some of my posts. The danger for me was that I was actually looking for a way to justify what they did and didn’t do. I felt so sorry for my mother that I couldn’t look at the damage caused to me. I was stuck until I separated her issues and excuses from the pain and damage that had been done to me. I had to validate me in order to overcome the things in the past. Today, now that i have done all the work, I can feel sorry for my mother, just not at MY expense.
I look forward to your future shares!
Hugs, Darlene


Hi Everyone, my Mother is a terrible narcissist. She drove my dear father to suicide when I was 12, and she would have done the same thing to me if I haven’t been strong minded. At the age of 21 I even left the country, that’s how much she hurt me. Now I have a beautiful daughter of my own and I am doing my best to be a great mother and very proud of the fact that I broke the legacy.
All the best and lot’s of love from Croatia.


Hi Daniella,
Welcome to Emerging from Broken. Thanks for sharing your story. YAY for breaking the legacy! That is wonderful.
Hugs, Darlene


Yes you are right Darlene, I see your point: so I need to separate her issues and excuses from the pain and damage that had been done to me!” thanx for the insight…see how I go
I have done alot of work in myself, but with my mother it is new deeper grieving work Im currently going through, Im already seeing good fruits….The last times Ive spoken to my mother there is a shift in the atmosphere…there is no more “i understand, mother”…comming from me, and less truths covered up in jokes and laughter…Im taking myself more seriously, and Im feeding the needs of my inner child before loved ones, and it feels right! Im truely experiencing a new freedom, I feel a nourishment within my inner most being…wow


I am 49 years old…I have always wanted to write a book, I love to read..My older brother and I were talking a few years ago about my mom and he brought up her narcissistic personality, which at the time I just regarded it to her appearance, she always had to look just right (she is a beautiful woman), I have started researching things on narcissism, and wow, that’s my mom. I was the scapegoat 🙁 I took care of the younger kids from the age of 9. I also was molested by my step father when I was 12. My mom of course got us out of the home and called the police, took me to 1 counseling session that is all I can remember. I have been in and out of counseling since, blaming my depression, my fears, my emptiness on my molestation. I now know it wasn’t that that I couldn’t come to terms with, but HER, my own mother, who verbally abused me. I hated her glances that said “look what did now”, or her rages, oh those were god awful, and so scary, I would try and hide somewhere. Unfortunately she still does this to me when I speak with her on the phone…but it’s the tone of her voice, it makes my skin crawl. I will never be good enough, I realize that now, and it took me 49 years??


Hi Joni
Welcome to Emerging from Broken. Yes, all of this stuff makes a contribution. You have found an excellent place to share about this stuff! Many of the readers here relate to this kind of parent so you are not alone!
I am on holidays for another week, but I look forward to hearing more from you as your read and share more here.
Hugs, Darlene


i have a narcissistic mother too and everything you’ve said has made me re think the way i view her. “Abusers remember more about what they did then we remember about what they did.” this line in paarticular shed some light on my views of my mother. many times i thought perhaps she doesn’t know any better. she’s very immature and doesn’t realize how much it hurts me to see how she doesn’t wish me a happy bday. how she gossips about me, makes fun of me, call me fat,puts me and my dream down telling me i can’t do that. but reading about your experience and how you’ve disected the situation with her reaction reminded me of the times that my mother falsely would accuse me of gossiping about her with her friends telling them “she was a bad mother” when i never said that. i simply would see her friends in the street from time to time and ofcourse out of courtesy i would say hi. but she would jump to all these crazy conclusions. it is her guilty conscience. i see it now. yes! she knows what she is doing is wrong other wise why wait to catch me alone. to avoid witnesses. why? because she knows it’s wrong. and the fact that she is well aware of her wrong doing and carefully plans her attacks really scares me. evil has a kind face. if i showed you a picture of my mother you wouldn’t believe all the things she’s done to me because she looks so sweet and many people think she is this angel because she often donates cloths and money to the poor. anyways thnx for posting your experiences. with this you have helped plenty of girls whom have fallen victim of a cruel narcissistic women who happend to mothered them. i no longer feel like i am the crazy one the way i use to feel. she would make me feel like i was the crazy one. everything she did she would deny and say that never happend and that i was crazy. all the times i wanted to commit suicide i now know that it was because she made me feel worthless. all those bad relationships i was in with narcissistic men were because i was so use to giving and not recieving thanks to her and the way she programmed me from a early age. best wishes on your book. i too love to write:) i’m more into poetry though.


Hi Stephanie
Welcome to Emerging from Broken
I am glad that you enjoyed the post and that it helped you to see things from a different angle. You make great points here and NO you are not “the crazy one” at all.
Now that you have realized that this stuff is wrong, (and it matters not if she knew better or not) you can look at the damage it caused your self esteem (including things like the connection you made about why you chose the men you did) and you move forward with the healing process!
I have written lots in this site about this stuff!
Hugs, Darlene


[…] The related posts are in bold print throughout this post.  One more related post is ~ My mothers Narcissistic Reaction to my book idea […]


Wow Darlene, I was reading more of the archives, as I do every day and came upon this…

Although, I haven’t read the comments yet, I will, but I was just instantly reminded of how my mother thought everything was about her as well..due to her narcissism. I remembered her very first reaction to finding out years ago that I was seeking help for my addictions and depression…she firmly told me that I had better NOT bring up her name. A couple of years into therapy, my therapist had asked me to invite my mother and father to participate in a session. I asked my father, which he agreed to immediately, however, my mother was outraged! She REFUSED to participate and threatened my dad for even thinking about it. Of course, my therapist, was not surprised by my mother’s reaction. Frankly, neither was I. I wish my father would have not allowed her control to decide for him. It makes me so sad not being “allowed” to even have a relationship with my father now either, due to my mother. She told him to make a choice.

It being the holidays right now, I am a bit more depressed than usual and am so grateful that I have your site to visit.

Thank you, my friend.

Love and hugs,


Hi Mitzi
I am so sorry that this happened to you. One of the things that I realized in the case of my parents was that I had to look at them as individuals. Adults have choices. I am sorry that your father chose your mothers request over relationship with you, because her request is wrong. My parents would like everyone to think they are powerless over making individual decisions, but that is another lie. My parents both have been swayed by their partners against their own children. That is very sad.
Glad you are here,
Hugs, Darlene


I have struggled most of my life with a rare disease that caused me a lot of physical pain when I was a teenager, and my mother never took me to the doctor because she thought I was just making it up. Now, three decades later, I mentioned to her that I would like to write a book about my experience living with a major health issue, and all she had to say was, “Just don’t say anything bad about me in it.” When I had a short article published last year, she had no comment whatsoever. No congratulations, no sympathy for what I’ve been through, just silence. Today I had lunch with a friend and her mother. I couldn’t believe how comfortable they were with each other, how much love passed between them in their conversation and gestures. It really triggered some grief to see how good a mother/daughter relationship could be.


Welcome to EFB
I am so sorry that you were invalidated this way. Sounds like you can relate to what my mother said as well. I went through a lot of grief over this whole thing too. That is a normal and natural part of the process.
Glad you are here.
Hugs, Darlene


Well, I’ve been doing this mother daughter dance for the better part of 30 years, 20 of which have been in therapy. The limited contact option works best for me because I can emotionally shut down while listening to her talk and she doesnt get to witness my lack of emotional reaction, not that it would make a difference since her emotions are the only ones that count.

We were due to visit (husband and I) in the next couple of months but since her behaviours have becoe progressively worse over the course of the past few months, I don’t think it will be healthy for me to go there and be subjected to that for 5 days.

For years I’ve had this horrifying fear that this can be passed down through the generations (my grandmother was a horrific narcissist) and now my mother and perhaps me and for that reason I’ve avoided having children for many years. On a secondary level also I don’t want to subject my child to that type of life and I sincerely don’t want her in my kids life, so adopt after she dies or cut off all contact with her once we do adopt… Difficult choices…

Thankfully we live 6 states away and the only form of contact is phone and that’s fairly limited as well…..


Hi Dee
Welcome to emerging from broken. I had that same fear too! My grandmother was also a very nasty woman. But the only way that this is “passed down” through the generations is through the learned behaviour. It is the dysfunctional “belief system” that is passed down. I write a lot about that on this site. Glad to have you here!
Thank you for sharing,
Hugs, Darlene


Darlene – Your question is one I’ve been asking myself a lot lately:

“If she truly has narcissistic personality disorder, wouldn’t she have been the same in front of everyone?”

My mother certainly fits the Narcissistic personality type having most of the typical traits, but a part of her seems to KNOW the way she treated me was wrong. She treated me differently when other people were around. Outsiders and even relatives have a different perception of her because she was so sly about that. So, can this be a different type of Narcissist?

I was blown away recently when I read a description of what happens to a daughter of a Narcissist mother: The self-loathing, indecision, lack of confidence, depression, anxiety and introversion plus losing oneself in imaginary worlds: art, reading, writing, movies, etc. That describes me perfectly! I think my love and compassion for animals comes from relating to the underdog. Well, I’ve gotten a bit off track here…

Anyway, there’s no doubt in my mind that my mother has Narcissist Personality Disorder. Perhaps she didn’t really believe she was wrong to treat me that way, but understood that society doesn’t accept her treatment of me and that was the only reason she kept it concealed. To avoid disapproval from society which a narcissist can’t handle.


Hi Drained
Does it matter if there is a “different kind of Narcissist” ? My mom I am sure beleived that she was not wrong to treat me that way (except that she denies that she treated me in ANY bad way; I think she thinks that it was her right, but that WAS wrong too. The biggest thing for me has been to realize that the damage and acknowledging that there was and is damage is the most importnat thing for me to heal from. Even if I can figure out what “diagnosis” fits her (or anyone else). NPD doesn’t really fit her though unless it is only in relation to the way she is with me. If a person can contol a disorder, then it isn’t a real disorder. (which is why they are called “disorders” actually… it gets complicated!)On the other hand, I do find it helpful to read about those disorders and it is stunning how I can relate others behaviour to what is written!
Thanks for sharing.
Hugs, Darlene


Darlene – Yes, I think my mother’s warped view of parenting had her believing that it was her “right” to treat me like she did.

My mother did seem to have some control over her actions although sometimes she did slip up… my husband got to see glimpses of this. He “gets” the situation based on what he’s seen, some of her phone messages were very telling, and of course past situations I’ve told him about. When her dementia started in, she was a lot less sharp with her craftiness. I’ve often heard the “experts” insist that it’s the disease not the person when someone with dementia or Alzheimer’s acts unpleasant. What I have witnessed is that some of the awful traits she always had became more amplified and less transparent, so it’s just an extension of her natural temperament. Her natural Narcissistic trait just had the additional forgetfulness, repetitiveness and weakened cognition characteristic of dementia on top of the nastiness. I know each case is different, but it’s what I’ve seen in my own mother.

I’m still going through the stages… I guess I’m still trying to justify my anger and resentment towards my mother and her treatment of me. It’s like if I can nail down her condition and reassure myself that I’m not stupidly misinterpreting things, being over-sensitive and overreacting. But then, I realize that’s part of the damage she’s done with the brainwashing. As you can see I’m still coming out of the fog so I’m sorting out things, wavering, but mostly it feels like puzzle pieces finally coming together.

Sorry if I’m jumping around here with my thoughts. So much to process! I appreciate your input and hope you do get that book completed.


We all come through this process in stages so it is all good. I jumped all around too. Finally beleiving that I was not making it up or exagerating was huge for me. It sounds easy to just “validate the damage” but I know it isn’t that easy. I took me a long time and that is due to the brainwashing from such a young age; believing that they were right and we “must” be doing something wrong to deserve all of it.
Hugs, Darlene


Yesterday I realized that I actually ‘trapped’ myself after I left an abusive childhood, and I kinda knew the things that were happening were not right but as a child at that time there were not too many people out there that believed Children.. Children were taught to “speak only when spoken too” when company comes around.. Meant to keep child quiet.. used to brainwash.. Children learn very quickly that you might as well not say anything cause it’ll be painful afterward…, went into an abusive marriage, controlled brainwashed abused, lost my only child to the “Abuse Grid/Matrix”, came out of marriage just a shell, nothing left of me as a person, wife, mother… Kept myself Trapped by keeping a name because I didn’t want my MNDP’s last name, wanted my daughter back (didn’t realize at the time that she was already sucked into the grid/matrix), Alone… I chose to keep my married name in the hopes that my Daughter would realize what was happening and come back to me… I kept that name and myself, really, attached to the grid/matrix not realizing what I was doing… To myself and my beautiful wonderful Husband who “didn’t deserve that”… I attached us both to the grid/matrix by keeping that name…
Yesterday was the most Freeing and Exciting Day for me, nobody on earth could ruin what I chose and Did!
AND I had the neatest experience this morning, I was enveloped in a warm, what I would call a, cloud… In that Warm Wonderful Cloud I was a Little Girl In the Middle of a Classroom Standing up Twirling Around and Saying “Hi I’m Kelly Savoie”!!!
MNDP decided very early in my life that i was not going to like school ever, it worked kinda…
MNDP didn’t know or care to know or was completely ignorant of the Fact the My Sister and I were Brilliant, we both could have gone to universities of our choice with 4.0gpa’s, Principal in high school told MNDP that, it was so jealous…
I HAVE Broken the ‘Attachment’ to the grid/matrix by doing that one little thing and understanding what it was doing to me, my relationship, and my future happiness!



I have wanted to write a book for a long time. You have read my posts describing the abuse from both my mother and father. I don’t think legally my mother would have a case against me. She set the incest in motion and it had to be obvious for reasons I don’t feel comfortable saying here. There was just too much evidence on a child to miss and she even opened doors and watched for a minute and then closed them again. This went on from age four to sixteen.

I never had memory blocks like many children. I could dissociate, but I always knew what was happening. My memories are very clear as far back as age three. One psychologist said that having an IQ of 180 and an eidetic memory played into all of it somehow. But the upshot of it all is that what both of them did was illegal. The only “love” I got in that insane environment was from my father. From her I got nothing but pain, black eyes, pulled hair, insults and instructions to my father to continue the beatings when she was too tired.

I was her slave from day one, taking care of children, cooking, cleaning, sex with her husband and the loss of anything a child or young person should have. She has tried to come between me and my husband and children for years, saying that if it weren’t for my lies, they would bow down and worship her. An exaggeration I know, but it is her belief, that she is the most important, loving person in the world. She is the very definition of Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

I have read Marilyn Van Derbur’s book and I would be glad to read Darlene’s. I would love to write one but I don’t know if I could get my thoughts in order well enough. Just posting on here helps tremendously. My thanks to Darlene and everyone here.



Hi Linda
It is horrific what some children go through and surviving is amazing. The story of what you lived through is a nightmare and you are a miracle. 🙂

I have a collection of EFB book in the works but time always gets away on me. I think that when my youngest graduates high school in another year I will have more time for writing. I have a few ideas for books that I would like to write. 🙂

Hugs, Darlene


Love your comments! I am happy that you re Kelly Savoie too! I got a big smile reading that!
hugs, Darlene


Having been ‘brought up’ in the early 50’s, I see that the culture is very different now. A parent ‘abusing’ a child did not have the same implications as it does now. That doesn’t excuse it or change the long term consequences on the child. ‘Hiding’ the bad behavior was not as important as it became decades later. In the 60’s my mother publically beat me with a strap running from my elementary school back to our home. I passed out when she was finished with me. This was in broad daylight. I have a hard time believing this was not seen by anyone. But, there was no interaction or intervention. Her brother, my uncle, would punch one of his sons in the face in public, and not give it a second thought. Very, very different from todays culture.

Rocky Mtn Treasure
March 31st, 2017 at 7:17 pm

Darlene, Thank you so much for this web site! I thought I had worked my way through a lot of narcissistic abuse until I found that my mother passed away earlier this week. My bother, also one of her flying Monkeys, called me today Friday to let me know. Of course, he told me that all the family estrangement is my fault. That “I bring it on myself”. Ironic how standing up against flying monkeys and bullies equates to “me” being the trouble maker! I found this article as well about scapegoats and how they are treated in Narcissistic. Like your information, I do find some comfort and strength in you words and the truth you share.

by Glynis Sherwood

Did you grow up having doubts about your self esteem or personal worth? When things went wrong in your family, did you tend to be the fall guy? Do you find yourself encountering recurring disrespect from friends or colleagues? Do you feel unsure of yourself and/or have difficulty experiencing trust in relationships? Are you drawn to people who repeatedly hurt you, act irresponsibly or let you down?

If you answered ‘Yes’ to any of these statements, you may have been scapegoated by your family. The term ‘scapegoat’ refers to a family member who takes the blame for difficulties in the family. Scapegoating is a form of bullying. Family relationships profoundly impact our identity and how we view ourselves.

How to Tell if You Have Been Scapegoated:

You are held responsible for family problems, conflicts or challenges, even if they have nothing to do with you. Other people blame you for their actions. You may end up feeling a lot of shame for being ‘the bad guy’, and/or anger for being blamed for negative family dynamics.
You are attacked and disbelieved if you tell the truth and ‘blow the whistle’ on negative and/or inappropriate family dynamics.
There has been a history of one or more family members being verbally, emotionally or physically abusive towards you. Other family members seem to accept or look the other way when you are bullied or aggressed against like this. You may feel like the ‘black sheep’ of the family.

You find yourself repeatedly being accused of behavior the scapegoater is engaged in. For example, a family member repeatedly yells at you, and then accuses you of being abusive. Or you behave thoughtfully and are then told “all you care about is yourself”.

You act out the negative ‘expectations’ of scapegoating such as not living up to your potential, or getting into relationships with abusive people because your self esteem is has been damaged.

You are the mentally healthiest family member, but are repeatedly accused of being sick, bad, etc.

You have been slotted into the role of family outcast, and are treated with disdain or disgust by family or yourself.

Your achievements are belittled, minimized, criticized and rejected.

What’s Going On In Families That Scapegoat

Families that are shame or fear based are not healthy. Often in these families you will find evidence of abuse, neglect, addiction, betrayal, mental illness (e.g. Narcissistic Personality Disorder) and insecurity. Dysfunctional families either lack insight or find it threatening, and actively repress it through scapegoating those who want to understand and change negative dynamics. Scapegoating is a “projection defense” that allows scapegoaters to keep up appearances. In other words, making the scapegoat look bad takes attention off the real problems in the family.

Many families who resort to scapegoating are headed by narcissistic parents who lack personal awareness, and empathy for their target, as in their eyes, the target is there to serve their false image and make them look good. So the purpose of scapegoating is to allow families to carry on unhealthy behavior patterns, and maintain the myth of normalcy, without having to look inward or take responsibility for a toxic environment. To the outside observer – and possibly the Scapegoat – these families seem crazy making and delusional.

Who Gets Picked to Be Scapegoat

The Scapegoat doesn’t get picked randomly or by accident. Usually they are either sensitive, unhappy, vulnerable, ill and/or the outspoken child or whistle blower. In other words, the scapegoat is the child
who refuses to look content or stay silent in the unbearable atmosphere created in the family home.

How Scapegoating Impacts the Target

Scapegoats almost universally experience low self esteem or lack of self worth. The major problem is
that they suffer from an Identity Disturbance, as the target confuses the myth that they are bad, with the truth. This is usually a lie, with the more insidious truth being that Scapegoats are being abused through the process of being taught they are ‘bad’. Scapegoats tend to struggle with chronic insecurity, as they never feel safe or believe they are good enough or loved. They can also fall into a‘Victim’ role, and unconsciously repeat their scapegoating by gravitating towards unhealthy behavior or relationships at work, school and their private life.

Scapegoats often have trouble feeling safe in relationships – especially intimate relationships – due to the betrayal of trust in their family. They can also have challenges managing emotions, and find they either feel overwhelmed and anxious, or shut down and not know how they are feeling.

I just wish to share this with others to help bring clarity to the pain we endure.

However awful the narcissist is, at the end of the day, I love my mom and will always wish she would recognize how wonderful and beautiful her scapegoat daughter truly is!

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