Having been through 18 months of intense counselling which started out as one type of investigation but quickly materialised into the study of a narcissist mother, I whole heartedly agree with each and every section of Dr Perry’s explanation here.
While still an interesting read to someone without a parent like this, for any who have experienced all that he describes first hand (or still does) these words should help enlighten and educate.
I back him up with the suggestion that professional help is needed. Without it, I’d still be the people pleaser I grew up to be, I’d still be feeling responsible for her happiness because she’s spent years telling me I’ve ‘ignored’ her since being married, I’d still be fearfully making excuses to her when my farming husband cannot make a family meal (because she’s always taken it personally, when in fact the weather dictates the farming calendar and I was too scared to stand up for him so instead inadvertently fed her need to believe I was in a controlling marriage).
I don’t tend, these days, to brood on this too much because I have a newly discovered self-esteem to nurture and a self belief and goals I wish to pursue.
But sometimes. Just sometimes, I’ll read about the condition to remind myself that I will never be able to ‘help’ her in the traditional sense because she has no empathy for anyone around her. She is THE most selfish person I’ve ever met.