Narcissist Mother Enlists Golden Child in PR Warfare

Narcissist Mother Enlists Golden Child in PR Warfare

Editor’s Note: This true narcissistic abuse story was shared by a fellow survivor. Read more survivor stories here, or submit your own story here. 

I have never lived with my mother, but I was extremely traumatized by her toxic behavior. I had buried some of the trauma I experienced so deeply and I think they’re only now coming back because I am strong enough to confront them without spiraling. This happened over twenty years ago and it involves my sister who was 14 at the time, and my narcissist mother, who was 39.

My narcissist mother had been married to a male narcissist (cheater, liar, financially neglectful, gaslighting) for about six years.

The truth was that this was actual karma at work, because my mother told me that her only criteria for marrying a man were that he could sing ballads and thrill her. Well, her narcissist husband had a great singing voice and pretended to speak several languages. She fell pregnant with my baby sister and they got married.

She got what she wanted. He could sing. But he didn’t own a home even though he was CEO of a multi-million dollar business. He was financially irresponsible and he cheated on her all the time. They were at each other’s throats from day one.

Skip forward after six years of that.

My mother and stepfather have just been evicted from their rented home. The banks are calling him over a business loan repayment. One Saturday morning, my stepfather and mother had a quarrel. According to what I heard, he had spent almost nine hours beating my mother. At one point, he was trying to pour drain cleaner down her throat.

My 14-year-old sister does not call the police, a neighbor, me, or anyone. Neighbors heard my mother screaming and my stepfather shouting for the entire day and forced their way in. That was when someone phoned me at my grandparents’ home to tell me what had happened. I was barely an adult at the time (18) and I was embarrassed about being around something so vulgar. I decided not to go comfort my mother. (That was a hard no for me).

Six days later, on Friday evening of the next week, the incident was headlined on the front page of a tabloid paper. A journalist wrote a blow-by-blow account of my mother’s nine-hour beating in the center pages of the paper. My sister bought the paper on her way home from school and showed it to me. She was excited and happy to show me illustrations depicting the more disgusting parts of the abuse. Quotes from actual conversations were included. I couldn’t bear to read any of it. Well, my sister told me she had called the papers herself and offered to sell them the story. She was very proud that she had produced this juicy story for the ENTIRE country to read.

Do you think my mother was angry, embarrassed or upset? Think again. My teenage sister was her proxy in the war against my stepfather in the press.

Most women would call the police, get the man arrested and charged and then file for divorce, right? Not my mother. She doesn’t want to be disliked by a man. In her mind, sneakily exposing his savage abuse in the press was a clever way of shaming her husband into giving her access to his millions.

Needless to say, my mother sacrificed her dignity for nothing. My stepfather still refused to pay my sister’s tuition for a private preparatory school, piano lessons, medical bills, etc.

As a result of his neglect, I was asked to be financially responsible (parentification!!) for my youngest sister when she turned twelve. I remained so until she left university (I paid her full tuition – no loans).

On top of that, my mother complained that she had to provide room and board and my stepfather was spending money elsewhere. I was scared my mother would kick my sister out, so I agreed to pay her utility and grocery bills until my sister graduated. If you are disgusted by my mother’s irresponsible behavior, try to imagine my brain exploding a little every time I think about that.

Postscript: My stepfather died penniless in a rundown rented home four years ago. He had testicular cancer and refused to take his medication, knowing he would surely die. The landlady came after my mother for rent owed shortly before that.

Narcissistic Mother Manipulates with Super-Projection Clapback

Narcissistic Mother Manipulates with Super-Projection Clapback

Editor’s Note: This story was submitted by a fellow survivor of narcissistic abuse. You can submit your story here

Something weird recently happened to me with my narcissist mother. Last Tuesday, I got an email in my junk folder (all of my mother’s emails go there automatically because they present like phishing or scam emails – how ironic that this is exactly what they are meant to do!!!).

The message was a Pinterest sermon entitled “Just because she’s your mom.”

It looked strange to me because she never refers to herself as “Mom.” And why would she? She never raised me and about seven years ago, she told me that she had two daughters. (She has three daughters and I am the eldest).

I typed the title into a search engine and found the same Pinterest sermon. Basically, there was a list of everything she had done to offend me. She was saying that I had done all of these things to her.

In summary, “I’m your mother so don’t clap back at me or it will hurt my feelings. I’m the only mother you have so you had better stop resisting my efforts to control your emotions through guilt and shame”. It was such an obvious attempt to manipulate me that I had a laugh out loud.

What sparked this narcissistic clapback, anyway?

During the last week of December 2017, my mother sent me a subject only email (no message content) in all caps demanding that I buy furniture for her new home. (She already has two in two different countries).

She was inviting me to visit her in the United States but only if I bought the furniture for her new condo.

The thing is, I was seriously ill and was in the hospital. She had no idea because she did not ever contact me to find out how I was doing. My mother was told over a year before that I have a chronic, incurable condition that causes me crippling pain. My treatment is expensive and I need to spend a lot of time in a hospital. I can’t socialize, travel or do many leisure activities.

So, I reminded her that (a) I was sick and in the hospital and that (b) I needed the cash to pay for my medical treatment. Her response was “I don’t know of anything being wrong with you.”

I reminded her of our conversation a year earlier. I also said that it was extremely rude and vulgar to demand money from anyone via email. She wrote back to me, saying that I was the one with bad communication skills.

Then, I told her I was not okay with not receiving an apology or being blamed about something that she herself had done. I also told her that I was accustomed to her acting immaturely. Then, I reminded her that I was in a lot of pain and would have to sacrifice medical treatment to buy her furniture. She did not rescind her request. In response to that, I told her I would no longer send her money.

I was sick and needed my downtime to recover.

“Please leave me alone so I can heal. Do not send me any more messages. I do not want to be spoken to.”

I sent photos of myself being wheeled from one examination room to the next.

Luckily, I was able to set the hard boundary because I was in therapy for codependency and complex post-traumatic stress syndrome. My therapist told me that once the toxic parent notices that I am sticking to my healthy boundaries, I was going to be getting exactly this kind of pushback. They would tell lies and do everything in their power to guilt me into changing my mind. I was told to completely cut off contact and never discuss my feelings or intentions with the toxic person until I was able to fully accept that they did not care about me. I did not expect her to respond like that. Blaming me for everything she herself did? Color me shocked.

More Help: 10 Reactions to Expect from Narcissists When You Go No Contact

Videos on Narcissistic Mothers – Start Here:

I remember now: the game has changed

I remember now: the game has changed

Editor’s Note: If you need inspiration and motivation, you NEED to read this post! This beautiful submission came from one of our SPANily members and fellow survivors named Julie Liang. Not only is she a gifted artist, but she is an inspiring example of someone who is beating the odds and creating the life she wants and deserves. I am so honored to share Julie’s artwork and thoughts with you here. She is truly amazing on so many levels! Thanks to Julie Liang for giving me permission to share. ~Angie Atkinson

Artwork and Story By Julie Liang

I drew this picture last night to empower myself as well as add some positive energy to my room, which is being turned into a galaxy/space sensory room. I have Down syndrome and I am also on the Autism Spectrum. I just enrolled in college for an associates degree in physical science. My plan is to then go to university for my bachelor’s degree in Aerospace Engineering.

Ever since I was little I have been obsessed with outer space. All my life people told me that I would never be anything. That I could never accomplish anything. My mother didn’t put me in special education classes instead she pushed me into regular classes that with time turned into advanced classes.

You see, first, my mom was the game changer. She knew that one day I would achieve great things and she didn’t let the world or anyone put her daughter into a box.

I’ve been abused and taken advantage of and pushed around my whole life. Narcissistic people have tried my whole life to pull me down, but I’m a fighter.

Something inside me changed when I found out that my mom is very sick. I had to become my own game changer. I needed to believe in myself and just look up.

My time of looking down is over and it’s time for me to put my helmet on and block out all the voices that say I will never touch the stars. It’s time for me to show them who I really am. I am powerful. I am strong. I am smart. I know who I am now. I remember and now the game has changed.

Mental Illness Madness (Narcissistic Abuse Survivor Poem/Song)

Mental Illness Madness (Narcissistic Abuse Survivor Poem/Song)

One moment you’re nothing
The next moment you’re born
Dropped into a dark, angry, scary world
You’d much rather ignore

A mother’s paranoid toxic mental state
A father evil and psychotic with a deadly gun
One sister’s jealous dangerous hate
The other brainwashed, unaware and way too young
A life long friend’s betrayal and a trusted lover’s lie
Throw in two serial killer’s plot revenge
And there goes what could have been
My beautiful life

When everything you know to be sacred and true
Blows up in your face, pops like a balloon
It’s a rape of the soul, annihilation of trust
Destroying all reasons for living
But…go on you must

How does one come back from something like that
When dying seems easier than living in fact
And all efforts to exist fail in despair
Tell me, how does one come back from there

You gotta blame the Mental Illness Madness
You can’t begrudge the ill
What you need is forgiveness
Love, and more compassion still
And you know, climbing that mountain
Will be the hardest thing you’ll ever do
But who knows, facing that challenge
May well be, God’s perfect plan for you

Mental Illness by definition is the devil so real
A blackout of potential, depleting all one’s unique appeal
Try as you might to make sense of time n’ life lost
There is no price to make up such the cost

How much sadistic torment can one human mind survive
What’s the imploding limit before a pure heart resigns
I wonder, is real love and empathy even a true possibility
Cause In my life, that’s something I have never ever seen

The egoist opportunist will always sabotage the self
With money, hearts n’ minds n’ other things
They think will bring them accomplishments and wealth
So commonly narcissistic and self serving from the throne
They sit inside their castles barking orders and casting stones

You gotta blame the Mental Illness Madness
You can’t begrudge the ill
What you need is forgiveness
Love, and more compassion still
And you know, climbing that mountain
Will be the hardest thing you’ll ever do
But who knows, facing that challenge
May well be, God’s perfect plan for you

When everything you know to be sacred and true
Blows up in your face, pops like a balloon
It’s a rape of the soul, annihilation of trust
Sure takes the joy out of living
But…go on you must

How does one come back from something like that
When dying seems easier than living in fact
Each day that goes by takes another chunk out of me
Moment by moment, I pray for a little peace

The Will is gone, the Will is gone
Everything I know to try
Seems to go so wrong
The Will is gone, the Will is gone
Everything I feel inside
Tells me, I’m not that strong
How am I supposed to fly
When I can barely stand
I know, I’ve never asked before
Won’t somebody help me if you can…

Sharon Feigenbaum copyright 3/18/2016

Editor’s Note: This amazing poem/song was submitted by a fellow survivor of narcissistic abuse. Want to submit your story? Learn more here. 

Letting Go of the Juicer and My Narcissistic Mom

Letting Go of the Juicer and My Narcissistic Mom

My narcissistic mom was the kind of person who rationalized the decisions she made and the ones she forced on me with “if you don’t do this/if I do this, your father will kill him.”

She made me keep the secret of the neighbor who molested me at age 8. Truth was, I wanted my dad to kill him.

I remember when she told me she had an abortion, sometime after my younger brother was born in 1962 and before 1967 (that’s when they both got sober). She said she’d had the abortion because she became pregnant with a black man from the bar she hung out in and that she knew having a black baby would throw my dad over the edge.

I didn’t need to know that information and could have lived a lifetime without it.

I ended contact with my parents when my son was born in April of 2000. Their gambling addiction turned them into the same people they were when they were drinking and I had made a solemn vow to never live through that again.

Do you know how sometimes when someone gets sober, they start to see the light and start apologizing for their horrible treatment of the people around them?

Sadly, that wasn’t the case for her; sobriety didn’t cure my mom’s narcissism. She just chose to abandon us in a different way.

Grieving the Juiceman Juicer

And now, here I sit, grieving over the fact that I’m about to let go of a Juiceman juicer. I know, it’s weird – but I can’t seem to stop myself.

So why does letting go of the juicer cause me to grieve now? Because once upon a time in those 40 years of life, my mom actually rose to the occasion for eight weeks of my life and was a mom to me.

In hindsight, I realize that my dad most likely paid her to spend a 40 hour week to be my caregiver. But still, that is an unknown and she did help save my life administering the fairly grueling task of the Gerson Therapy. All I was able to do during those initial weeks of the treatment was lay on the couch and walk to the bathroom and do my own coffee treatments.

So the juicer that has been moved with me since 1991 and lived in eight different homes and garages was some sort of representation of having a real mom.

Today I am letting go of the juicer, and facing the reality of how very toxic my mother truly was.

Are you struggling with a narcissistic mother? Join our free support group for adult children of narcissists, right here.

Surviving Sexual and Psychological Abuse: My Story

Surviving Sexual and Psychological Abuse: My Story

Editor’s note: Trigger Warning: This powerful true story of surviving narcissistic abuse and sexual abuse may trigger negative emotions and other issues for you. Please don’t read it unless you feel strong enough to do so.

This is my story of how I survived narcissistic abuse and sexual abuse. Usually, I feel like no one can relate to my life, everything that happened is just way too “extreme.” That was until I discovered the SPANily. Now, I’m sharing my story because I want other survivors to know they aren’t alone.

I grew up in a very sheltered environment. On the outside, my family looked great, and was very respected in our small community.

It’s only now, years after I left them and moved across the country, that I was finally able to open up the huge can of worms that was my past, and face the reality of what happened to me.

My father molested and raped me regularly. My grandfather also did. I was punished if I reacted in any way to their abuse.

Once, I threw up after my father abused me with oral sex. He got so angry because maybe my mother would realize something from seeing or smelling the vomit. I’ll spare you the gory details and just say that he punished me by trying to rape me until I bled. I was 6 years old. This is just one example.

But it wasn’t uncommon: everything my father did, he always blamed on me.

Either it was a punishment, or he would somehow imply that I owed it to him to “cooperate.”

Or he would say, “I know you want this. I know who you REALLY are. But don’t worry, I won’t tell anyone.”

He would slyly imply that this was the only way to “be good,” or to appreciate him. Often he would do something good for me, and then it was “expected” of me to at least listen to him, no?

Even now it is hard for me to say what it was he was doing to my mind. All I know is that he was smart and sly, and he had my entire being wrapped around his finger. He played with my feelings, my physical sensations, and private things I told him.

Everything was twisted around and used against me.

Being sad in our house was never allowed. He would make us dance and sing even when we didn’t want to. He had this unspoken rule that you are never allowed to be sad, and definitely never allowed to be angry. I lived in terror of anyone finding out my secret, and I learned to dissociate and forget it all myself, in order to survive.

After I moved away, I slowly started realizing how controlling and manipulative my father was. I could not place what it was he was doing! I started feeling awful every time I spoke to him or to my mother.

I started realizing that he was a tricky slippery person. I wished I could just break off contact, I dreamed of it because I was finally realizing how low and horrible he always made me feel.

I reached a point where I finally had the support I needed to remember the stories of abuse. As it started coming back to me, I was filled with such a strong fury. It was like a huge tsunami, powerful and uncontrollable.

It was at this point that I finally broke off all contact with my toxic family. It was hard, but that anger of realizing what he did to me gave me the strength I never could have had otherwise. I was remembering extremely graphic and horrible things, and as I did, I finally gave myself permission to trust my own inner voice and follow my heart.

I started getting rid of everything I owned that was from my former life or my former family. This clean slate enabled me to go further into my past.

Step by step.

I uncovered my mother’s role in it, then the fact that my father would bring other people to abuse me… I realized that my brain has this amazing ability to heal, even the most horrfic and deep wounds.

I saw that my mind knew how to do this, and that my heart was able to guide me as to what step to take next on my healing journey, if only I would be courageous enough to listen to it.

Finally, I was in control of my life, I was free from my family’s toxic hold on me. As I started healing I grew more confident in my own body and mind, and now I am continuing to build myself anew, one step at a time. I feel better than I ever did. I am learning what it means to live a normal healthy life and I am loving every new part of it that I uncover.

When you survive hell, and come out, you are strong and also you’re able to appreciate and enjoy life in a deep and meaningful way that I think only a survivor can enjoy. Sometimes when I do something for myself, I feel as excited as a six year old, like I am experiencing the joys I missed out on as a child.

Life is so bright on the other side and it IS POSSIBLE TO GET THERE! YES FOR YOU also! Don’t take my word for it – don’t give up and you will see for yourself.

Finding Angie’s videos, and this site was exciting for me, because I was finally able to have some sort of place to put my father. He checks off every box on the list of narcissistic characteristics. I connected to everything about what Angie calls Narcissistic Abuse Rehab.

To those of you out there who are here, like me, with the courage to face your pasts and heal, my message to you is: please take a good deep look inside of yourself. Don’t be scared to listen to that niggling deep down voice in your heart. Follow what you know is true, with courage. Don’t let anyone stop you. It is SO WORTH THE FIGHT!

Want to share your narcissistic abuse survivor story? Here’s how you do it. 

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