24: The Mailbox: Protecting Yourself from Narcissistic Parents
- Gemma Gladstone
- March 18, 2021
We have been getting some comments, queries, and questions in our mailbox recently. So in this episode, we will be introducing a new mailbox segment that we will have on the podcast from time to time.
With this podcast, we strive to raise awareness about some common topics that many of us have to deal with. So, if you are struggling with something or have an issue, the chances are that many others will be in the same boat. One of the things we received in our mailbox was an email from someone who listened to our podcast about narcissistic parents. In her email, she reflected on what that podcast meant for her regarding her narcissistic parent. She has kindly permitted us to read her email out on the show today and talk about it. Be sure to stay tuned to find out what our listener had to say.
- Justine reads the letter from the listener, who we will call Jane. In it, she asks how to protect herself emotionally in her relationship with her narcissistic mother.
- Jane is trying to work out what is possible in terms of her relationship with her mother.
- In her mother’s reply to her letter, she offered Jane nothing. Nor did she apologize to Jane or validate what she said, so Jane does not know what to do.
- Jane wants recognition. She wants to be seen and understood.
- Jane wants her mum to put her stuff aside and take care of Jane in the present moment.
- Jane’s mum has not answered any of Jane‘s questions. Nor has she offered any repair or explained her behavior.
- Jane has no way of knowing if her mum’s question about her wellbeing is sincere, so the situation remains unresolved.
- Past behavior is usually the best predictor of future behavior.
- The ‘healthy adult mode’ is required for narcissistic parents to put their stuff aside and come to the table.
- Jane needs to prioritize what is important for her before re-establishing a relationship with her mother.
- Jane is likely to get triggered by her mother if she decides to re-establish a relationship with her.
- We can never make another person feel or respond in the way we would like them to.
- A therapist can help you navigate and come to terms with the hurt caused by a narcissistic parent.
Links and resources:
The Good Mood Clinic website
Email Gemma and Justine at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to reach out to us, raise a topic, or ask a question.
The Red Flag Project has been released. Check out our website for more information.
Check out what’s new on our Learning Hub.
Reinventing Your Life (A self-help book for schema therapy) by Jeffrey E. Young and Janet S. Klosko
Children of the Self-Absorbed by Nina W. Brown
Disarming the Narcissist by Wendy Behary