5 Signs of a Narcissistic Parent
‘From the cradle to the grave’
Having the ultimate control and power does not end in the workplace for a narcissist. Their home gives them another arena to act out their grandiose belief for being seen as the ultimate mortal to be admired by all. Children who have a narcissist as a parent, are not treated as human beings, but merely objects to be used for personal gain.
I’ve listed below 5 signs of a narcissistic parent, though there are more, these are the ones that are mainly prevalent.
1 – Behind closed doors
Barbara has an 8 year-old son Michael, who sometimes has trouble concentrating in class. Her ex-husband David shows up for the parent teacher interviews and feigns interest, as little does the teacher know, that Michael does his homework at his Mum’s as Dad is always too busy and actually doesn’t believe a good education is important.Their son Michael plays up one day at school, so his teacher sends them both an e-mail. David is furious and unfortunately Michael is at his Dad’s house that particular night. Instead of sitting down with him and finding out what was troubling Michael, David yells and gets angry.Why was David so angry? Because, David was in fact, infuriated that Michael made ‘him’ look bad in front of the teacher. “How could you do this to me” type of thinking. “My kids behave and our family are perfect.” “You’ve embarrassed me.” A good parent will actually be more focused on their child’s needs and what is going on with them as opposed to their own ego and vanity and worrying about what others think.
2 – They lie and play mind games
“I will be all on my own when you go to your Mothers/Fathers house” or “It was your Mother/Father who left us and didn’t want us to be a family anymore” or “We have no money because of what he/she did to us”. “I bet your Mother/Father is going to move away now and doesn’t want you to go with them” or “He/she has another family now and soon won’t want you anymore” and the list goes on.The child feels torn for loving both parents and should never be told this type of baloney. The narcissistic parent loves manipulating and screwing with their children’s minds, their own children and don’t honestly see any short or long-term harm in doing so. Because they despise and loath their ex-partner, they will go to great lengths to try and get their children to feel the same. But children are smart and they can see through all the lies and temper tantrums.As a narcissistic parent does not have the ability to feel true love or a deep connection to others (they lost this ability as a young child), their needs and wants will always be more important than those of their partner or children.
3 – They have their special little ‘Golden Child’
We all love our children equally for their special individual traits and for who they are. We want them to be strong, independent and unique. The narcissistic parent wants a clone of themselves. Someone to be just like them and want to be able to live their lives through this ‘Golden Child’.This child in the narcissist’s eyes can do no wrong and even when they may have a few children, they discipline them completely different. Their other children and outsiders can see it so clearly, oh but not the narcissist. When they talk about their children, you would swear they only had one child because that is the only one they talk about.They may threaten ‘The Golden Child’ with consequences for poor or unethical behaviour, but never follow through. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree and this so called Golden Child’ grows up to be a mirror image of that parent
4 – They lay on the guilt
Allison’s ex-husband is a malignant narcissist who, even four years after the divorce and property settlement has been finalised, is hell bent on getting revenge for her leaving him.In typical narcissistic form, everything is still about him. They have two children together, two girls 10 and 14 years of age. Anyone who has a narcissist as an ex-partner knows it is a constant battle trying to co-parent with them. Allison took the children to Melbourne for the weekend and took them out of school on the Thursday and Friday to make it an extra-long weekend.When they went back to their father (begrudgingly), he was furious. “How dare she take you out of school for two days. She just wants you to be dumb like she is.” Allison is a big believer in her children having a good education and pays for them to do tutoring, so the girls know how she really feels about their schooling. Not “Did you have a lovely time?” or “What did you see?” Nope, it is always about them. His fear being that he is supposed to be the fun parent and hated the fact that the boys had fun with their mum. I’m not happy so how dare you be happy.
5 – The children are in fear of them
“Dad will get really angry Mum” Amy says to her Mum Samantha when they talk about Amy calling her Mum while she is at her Dad’s for the weekend. “You’re allowed to talk to me honey” says Samantha. Amy hangs her head and say’s “But Dad gets really angry when he hears me on the phone to you and says “Is that the bitch on the phone again?”Samantha has told me how sad she feels when her six year old daughter tells her this and how upset her daughter gets when she hears her Dad talk like that. Even though their court orders clearly state that the child is to have contact with either parent at any time, her ex-husband just doesn’t care. As usual, a narcissist doesn’t believe the law actually applies to themIt is all about trying to have control over Samantha still and he will do it anyway he can, even if it makes his daughter anxious and sadKevin has also told me how’, when his children go to his ex-wife’s place, they start to become anxious before it is time to leave. “She puts me down to them and they know she is just being mean and angry.” “They have told me that they know it is not right, but of course they don’t say anything as they know she will just explode and take it out on them. They are good kids and they know right from wrong. They seem to walk on eggshells when they are around her.A narcissistic parent doesn’t respect that children have a voice and a right to be heard. With courtesy, manners and respect everyone in a family has the right to voice their thoughts and feelings, but a narcissist takes it so personally, they would never encourage this type of family environment.
Portraying the perfect family image is critical to them. The narcissistic parent is constantly worried about what the outside world thinks of them and their little family. Being revered is always high on a narcissist’s list, to be put up on a pedestal is what they fill their little minds with daily.
Look at their social media pages and you can see for yourself the perfect little world that they want you to believe they live in. There will be photos of them all smiling with the kids, who of course are forced to smile or the parent will get angry. Look how active he/she is with the kids. The kids are always having a good time when they are with him/her. What a wonderful parent they are. But behind closed doors is an evil they don’t want the world to see.
Once the doors are shut and no one can see, out comes the true narcissist. The yelling, the controlling, the mind games slowly chipping away at the child’s self-esteem and anxiety levels, that will live with them from the cradle to the grave.