Being Raised By A Narcissist Can Make You Feel You’ve Been Neglected Your Whole Life.
Narcissism is when someone has a huge focus on your their own wants, needs, happiness and feelings. To the point where, other people’s wants, needs, happiness, and feelings don’t matter at all.
When you are dealing with a real narcissist, you can bet that even when they are kind, they are being kind for a reason that helps them.
Generally, it’s never a good idea to trust a true narcissist.
They have their own interests at heart and are willing to hurt you in many ways. If they think it’s necessary to meet their own needs, they’ll do it.
It’s very important to keep in mind, though, that there are many different levels of narcissism.
Some narcissists are so wrapped up in themselves that they don’t care about anything to do with anyone else.
Others can have milder versions of all different levels. They may act reasonably narcissistically in some situations, and much less so in others.
There’s a lot of talk about narcissism these days. At last, most people are becoming more aware of what narcissism is. What narcissism looks like, and how it forms.
But in some ways, the more you know about narcissism the more questions you might have.
It can make you feel a lot of doubt about the people in your life. Whether one or more is a narcissist, and what you can, or should, do about it.
No one has more reason, or more right, to have any questions than the child of a narcissist.
Being raised by a narcissistic parent is a really hard thing to understand and cope with. This is made even more complicated because the child of the narcissistic parent can be tricked into believing or feeling that the narcissistic parents’ attention, is love.
This attention is actually something called ‘mirroring’.
The best way to describe mirroring is that the narcissistic person does not have a clue of who they really are so they ‘mirror’ others; they are always looking for people who have personalities that they would find USEFUL to them. Like being charismatic, outgoing, smart, funny, successful having beautiful personalities. Anything that gives someone else attention. They don’t want to see anyone else getting attention, they want to steal it!
It’s strange being with someone who admires everything about you at first (love-bombing) then throws you away. They put you down, then they have brief moments of loving things about you again. The name for this process is trauma-bonding. There are several things going on here at once. They want to steal the good about you but also make you believe that what’s good about you is bad. They make you feel ashamed for being you.
After a while, you won’t feel like yourself. They’ll seem like they are way more fun than you, smarter, more full of life and energy and more interesting to YOUR friends. They seem to enjoy life so much more and you feel EMPTY. The narcissist has stolen your identity without you even realizing it.
They say sentences that you’ve said before. You taught them something that sounds intelligent and then you hear them use it. Exact words, in front of you to a stranger, to impress.
Narcissists will take all of you if they can because they’re empty inside. They aren’t creative. they need to steal parts of other people’s personalities to stay important. Narcissists aren’t nice people to be around when the mask is off or when they’re themselves. They know this so they copy other people.
Raised By a Narcissist?
The child of a narcissist has a life that appears one way but is actually another. This is, in many ways, a process of growing up in a lie.
All children begin from a place of trust at birth. Babies are born with their brains already ready to experience love and care from their parents. They interpret their parents’ actions as trust and love.
All parents must make decisions for their child. Most parents make decisions, as best they can, based on what they feel is best for their child. In huge contrast, the narcissist makes decisions based on what’s best for themselves. The children, of course, don’t know anything about selfishness or narcissism. They’ll always believe that their parents’ selfish decisions are coming from love and care.
Narcissistic parents can’t see or hear their child. They can’t connect with ‘them’. They experience their child as an extension and reflection of themselves. They are only aware of whether the child makes them feel bad or good.
When you make your narcissistic parent feel super pleased, you will feel heaps of “love.” But it’s not really love of you; it’s about them feeling pleased that you made them look good.
This is how the child of a narcissist ends up in a school he wouldn’t choose, or playing an instrument or sport he does not enjoy. It’s how the child of a narcissist ends up home alone, feeling unloved and not cared for. It’s how the child of a narcissist ends up feeling like her parents’ trophy one day, and their deepest shame the next. It’s how the child of a narcissist ends up feeling unknown, unseen and unheard, but not having any idea why.
And this is how the child of a narcissist grows up to feel alone, empty and lost. Even though there is sometimes a warm glow of the Narcissists’ fake love, it’s how the kid ends up feeling neglected all their life.
Unaware, you are always a victim of your parents’ whims and needs.
But inconsistent, fake or no real love takes its toll. It will leave you, the child, wondering, “Am I an acceptable person who is deserving of love?” No child should feel this.
How Being Raised By A Narcissist Can Make You Feel You’ve Been Neglected Your Whole Life.
The short and simple answer to this question is this: You end up feeling neglected because you have been. Yes, you are a victim of Emotional Neglect. This can be really obvious if your parents were absent, abusive, or, out of selfishness, didn’t provide for your essential physical, educational or physical needs.
But many victims of narcissistic parents find it hard to understand or accept that they are a victim at all. Especially if your parent was not particularly abusive, appeared loving, and met at least some of your essential needs described above.
At this point, it can be very difficult to accept that you were neglected.
But you were. You were emotionally neglected. You grew up with what I call Childhood Emotional Neglect or CEN. Childhood Emotional Neglect happens when your parents fail to respond enough to your emotional needs. And no parent fails more on that than the narcissist.
You grew up with the deepest biological expression of your truest self, your feelings/emotions, ignored.
The belief your parents gave you in childhood is continued through your whole life.
You have grown up with Childhood Emotional Neglect. You have learned how to neglect yourself.
But the good news is this: Now that you’re an adult, the ball is in your court. You can reverse the harm your narcissistic parent did to you by treating yourself in the exact opposite way.
To learn how to reverse the harm of your narcissistic parent, see the book Running On Empty: Overcome Your Childhood Emotional Neglect.
To learn how to deal with your narcissistic parent now in a way that allows you to become stronger and healthier, see the book Running On Empty No More: Transform Your Relationships.
To find out if you grew up with Childhood Emotional Neglect, Take The Emotional Neglect Test. It’s free.
Above all, never doubt this fact for one more minute: Being raised by a narcissist does make you feel you’ve been neglected your whole life.
Let’s have a chat. You can ask me any questions about Childhood Emotional Neglect and we can talk about ways to get YOU back,