Relationship/co-parenting with a narcissist

94 posts in this topic

Hi Oliviabird,

 

You wrote "I love my husband very much, but feel beaten down...". Are you sure you really love him the way he is, or are you loving the imagined individual he could be?

 

You wrote a lot about trying to "make him this, make him that": There is a fine line between "helping somebody" and "manipulation somebody to be the way you consider the right way".

 

If you find yourself in a situation where your map and the actual countryside doesn't match: Stop to stare on the map (it is useless, even if it's beautyful) and walk on sight...

 

Cheers

Franklan

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I have a relative-in-law who is like this. His wife came along when they were older, and they have no shared children. They live in a community situation, him, her, a carer (he has other problems) and other adults who are involved in a shared project, so she is not alone. It functions, I have little first-hand experience of how well, because I am unwilling to involve our children too much in that situation, and thankfully they live way far away. She certainly has other adults with whom to share the burden, and with whom to relate in a more 'normal' way. I hope she has plenty of focus outside of the house and their shared project and their relationship, luckily she already had two children who are grown and have interesting lives. I do not think that she feels in any way threatened or unsafe, and she certainly feels that she is the 'right' person to bring more out of him than is yet to be seen.

 

Personally I think she is whistling in the wind, and I wouldn't touch him with a barge-pole, but to be fair, and give a possible ray-let of light to you, they seem remarkably fine from a distance.

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I am hoping that there will be someone out there in Toytown land who has found a way to make life with a narcissist functional.

 

Whose idea was it for you to go to the counsellor alone?

 

One of the sadder aspects of narcissism is they think they don't need therapy cuz their already so wonderful.

 

In my experience the only way to deal with them is to break off contact. Might not be possible right away for you, but my 2 euro cents.

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There have been a few people here as well that have mentioned living with/surviving a parent with narcissistic personality disorder. If you're feeling up to it, it might be worth doing a search and reading through some of those posts, too, to get the viewpoint of the child so to speak.

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I just remembered a conversation that I had with the relationship counsellor...She explained the dynamics of relationships between couples who have themselves been abused and mistreated in childhood. She said that in my situation, as a child, the love that I received was poor and traumatic. I was never important enough for my parents to put me first. As an adult, my perception of love was clouded as I was conditioned to believe that in some way, I didn't deserve anything more than I got. Hence, I tolerated my relationship for so long. Similarly, she explained that children who are abused in any way ( including violence and incest), although they know its wrong, continue the abuse with their own children. She said it was a very good thing that I didn't have a child so she didn't need to help me with that issue. For years after, I was really terrified to ever have a child.

 

I am blessed to now have a daughter and from the moment I knew I was pregnant, I was determined that history would not repeat itself. It didn't and it won't. My daughter hasn't felt for a nanosecond in her life the way I felt as a kid. She is, and knows that she is my number one. Even the first day I met my husband, I told him exactly how that is and he accepts that wholeheartedly.

 

It must be so difficult to try to change yourself to cope with your life. You are a warm, kind, loving and caring person. That's who you are and that's what your child needs consistently in his life.

 

Again, I wish you all the strength you need during this difficult time.

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Janx Spirit...I'm really happy that things worked out for you and your children.

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Wow. So many sad, tragic stories out there. :-(

 

Edited to add: I am really grateful that people talk about these things in the open nowadays. That said, I'm so sorry that so many have personal experience with this. Narcissistic 'parenting' is child abuse, plain and simple. There are long term repercussions from the emotional abuse and neglect that continue into adulthood. Same issues for a partner, although it's perhaps less damaging.

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