Cutting toxic people out of your life.
Before I start on why it’s ok to remove toxic parents from your life, I’ll explain some signs your parents could have the disorder. Also, please remember the narcissistic personality disorder is on a spectrum. Some you can once you heal and once you’ve learned how to handle yourself around a narcissist, those on the lower end of the spectrum you might not need to entirely cut out if you can manage your emotions around them and not let their negative, toxic behaviour affect you. I say you as they will not change who they are! So we have to learn to accept them for who they are, choose to heal and overcome the pain, then manage ourselves our time with them, which is great if you can, if not or they are on the upper end of the scale, no contact is always best, this often makes people feel bad, or guilty and this is normal to feel this way, so I’ll explain why in some cases you need to go no contact. You need to let go of that guilt for doing so.
I, too, without realising it at the time, grew up with a narcissistic father. As the scapegoat child, I left home at fifteen and went no contact. Unfortunately, this also meant no contact with my mother, who is an amazing mother. When I was expecting my first child a few years later, I reached out, as I wanted the children to have their grandparents, unfortunately growing up with a narcissist meant I married a narcissist. My first partner was not a narcissist and treated me so well. Yet, sadly, after a few years, we just grew apart. I met, married and had children with a narcissist. Through childhood programming of beliefs, I accepted behaviour from the husband as normal that I should have never accepted, even though I knew something wasn’t right, by beliefs that children should grow with both parents together, guilt for splitting up a family unit, kept me trapped in that relationship way longer than I should have stayed, after their fourth affair which was, of course, my fault. I finally left, the ex-husband was on the lower of the spectrum, and we somehow managed to parallel parent, with what seems to be no lasting effects on the children. We still annoy each other without even trying now. I then had five wonderful years alone, planning on staying single. Then I met the narcissist sociopath. As you will all most likely know, he treated me better than anyone ever had before I knew what hit me, he just happened to be living with me. A few years later, we were expecting our first child, which is when things changed again. Not having an awareness of what was truly happening and from learned behaviour from childhood, I did not see what was happening to me. However, I finally break free, came across the term narcissist, started crossing the t’s and dotting the I’s and the massive realisation after realisation. It was a long hard road.
During the time with the ex sociopath narcissist, I had become isolated from so many, including my parents again. As I had done so in the past, I believed it was all down to me. I only had myself to blame. I had been programmed throughout childhood to take the blame ( partly it was as I made the choice) with the ex narcissist sociopaths triangulation surrounding my parents and the narcissist’s toxic words. I’d told him all about my past. Hence, he knew exactly what to use against me to get my mind ticking and cut my father off, which yet again resulted in little contact with my own mother, who’s not narcissistic.
You see, my dad is exceptionally negative, full of criticism and always expects me to pay for everything, other than ” I put a roof over your head.” And I helped do your garden.” The only thing he ever did, and that was for the sole purpose to bath at my home and have a cooked meal, as he’s the tightest person I’ve ever met when it comes to money. As we know, a narcissistic person will only ever do anything for someone else if there’s something in it for themselves. Those are the only two things he ever did for me. He did, however, also teach me to be self-reliant, which helped massively when getting away from toxic exes. When I first learned about narcissistic behaviour, when my dad would come at me, I’d just imagine myself flicking him on the nose. Slowly I’ve learned just to prove him wrong when he says I can not limit my time around him, observing his words and letting them bounce off me, not absorbing, finding the laughter in the unbelievable things he comes out with and saying phrases like. “That’s interesting.” Or “Why would you think that?” And things like. “In your opinion, however, that’s not my opinion.” Then leaving it be, not getting drawn off-topic or into an argument as the only person who ends up feeling hurt, disappointment or anger is me, he like most narcissistic people, gets a real kick out of seeing me upset, he even asked if I was looking forward to a finding of facts case in court with the ex, unbelievable. They do not have the perspectives or emotional empathy to care or see how something could be affecting you.
Now it’s taken hard work, mistakes, and practice to get to the point of being able to spend limited time around him without letting him have and say or impact on my life, and this isn’t for everyone. It depends on the narcissist you are dealing with, understanding those you can manage yourself around that they only understand only on a pint-sized level, their level of perspectives and opinions. In contrast, good people understand empathy, prospectives and views of others on a gallon-sized level also helps, my dad, had very little empathy. Yet, he had a little, ex narcissist sociopath doesn’t so it’s merely no contact, which was far from simple to start.
If they have one or two of these, they might just be negative people. You can manage your time around them, if they have five or more, they have the disorder if have them all, be extremely cautious, only you know just how bad it is or the effects it has on you and if you can disarm them when around them, or it needs to be no contact.
A few signs of Narcissistic parents signs, like signs of all narcissists.
1. Jealous and envious of you, when you make your own life choices, putting you down when you are doing well or telling you that you can not do that when you’re trying something new.
2. Dependent on you, emotionally, financially, there’s nothing wrong with taking care of your parents. Yet, good parents would not want you to sacrifice who you are or what you’re doing to take care of them, narcissistic parents look for ways to make sure you’re sacrificing your life for them as they feel more important and want to feel special.
3. Lack of empathy, they invalidate your thoughts, feelings and opinions, only what they think matters.
4. Lives through you, wants you to do what they want, wants you to have the career they want, not open to what you would like to do for you.
5. Superficial image, everything they portray to the outside world about family life, is exaggerated or lies and doesn’t match the reality of what family life is truly like.
6. Manipulation, the words they use to undermine you and destroy your self-worth—things like.
Comparison in a negative way. “Why can you not be more like your siblings.”
Guilt trips. “After all, I’ve done for you, and you can not do this for me, you’re so ungrateful.
Shaming you.” How could you not achieve this, you’re an embarrassment.”
Unreasonably pressure. ” if you don’t do your best, you’re no child of mine.” Good parents will raise you to try your best and help you through your mistakes.
Manipulative reward. “If you don’t do this I’m cutting you out of my will.”
There are just a few examples theirs so many more.
Sometimes we end up with a narcissistic partner because one or both parents were narcissistic.
A few more things if you’re still working out if your parents are narcissistic. They might not have done all of these, and if you find yourself saying yes to most, you are most likely dealing with a narcissistic parent.
Was either every single aspect of your childhood controlled by one of your parents? Or were you completely ignored like you didn’t even exist? Or they might try and live through you, living their own dreams by pushing them onto you and not allowing you to learn to live your own dreams.
When you’re growing up, you look up to your parents as role models, and if they were narcissistic, you developed coping mechanisms to survive.
So what is the difference between a narcissistic parent and a normal whatever normal is parent?
Most parents want the best for their children, most are proud, and most think their children are beautiful. Most will discipline their children, most like to show off about their children, and most do have grumpy days, that may result in snapping at their children, this is normal.
The most common signs your parent was a narcissist is they denied you the right to be yourself, to discover who you are, they have no empathy for you or how you feel.
Was the image outside the family home always perfect, yet inside was completely different?
Did they go around ruining special occasions, always needing to be the centre of attention?
Where they never wrong? Would they twist everything to blame you? Did they never apologise? Or if the did apologise did you feel like it was still your fault?
Did they never seem to take your thoughts, feelings or opinions on board?
Did they always criticise you and put you down?
If you were Gaslighted and controlled by your parent? They most likely are a narcissist.
Were you insulted continuously, criticised and put down by your parent?
Did they always take you to the doctors for issues you didn’t know you had?
Did they deny you love and affection unless you achieved?
You could never share thought or feelings, as they would be used against you?
Did your parent always, lie, manipulate and try to control you?
Did they always take the credit for your achievements?
Did you feel like your parent was always competing with you?
Did your parents just constantly storm your bedroom, over anything and everything, never giving you any privacy?
Did they look through your personal belongings? Often saying they just want to know more about you, yet not giving you your personal space?
Did they deliberately break things you owned?
Did they always guilt trip you?
Always spoke of their problems with you, but never listened to yours?
If you said anything to them about them that they didn’t like, did they smack you, send you to your room or scream at you?
Were you the forgotten child, the golden child that always had to perform for your mother or the scapegoat always being blamed?
Did you feel like you had to parent your own parent, take care of them, comfort them, not just because they were under the weather but all the time?
If you’re a people pleaser, it might just be because your own parent was a narcissist. Do you feel shame or guilt? Constantly trying your best so that all others like you. You may have always felt empty inside like you don’t deserve happiness, you may have trust issues, you may find your emotions hard to deal with. You may find it difficult to say no, creating and enforcing boundaries, little self-worth and self-love if you felt this way growing up. Into adulthood, you may have always had to defend yourself to your parent, often doubting reality around her. It could be because you had a narcissistic parent.
When you’re surrounded by negativity, it breeds negatively. Being around toxic people sends your mind and your spirit into turmoil. Surrounded by issues, problems, yelling, screaming, pain, hurt, lies, anger, dysfunction. It goes on all day every day, walking on eggshells not knowing what is going to happen next, so when you go to sleep at night, you may sleep, but you’re not resting. This also has massive effects on your mental health.
When the things you are doing, the places you’re in, the circles of people you’re around isn’t bringing you inner joy, it affects everything about you. To the point, you no longer know who you are. And you no longer love yourself.
The Narcissist is jealous and envious of all those around them, and they have issues and insecurities they project onto you. They’ve sent you ever sign imaginable that they don’t care for you. As we are so trained to have people around us, we continue to make excuses and go back, and we accept the behaviour as normal that we should have never accepted. You continue to show up to everything they invite you to, hoping for better, yet knowing they are no good for you, yet as you don’t understand why you continue to work harder to please them and try again.
I’m not saying you need to remove everybody and go it completely alone forever. It’s about being around the right people.
When negative and dark toxic people surround you, you will be unable to love yourself, find who you are. Go to sleep at night and rest. Your days will not feel good.
So what if you’ve spent years with them?
So what if you have children with them?
So what if they are family?
So what if they raised you?
So what if it’s familiar?
You have to learn no matter how hard it is, to love yourself, have a happier life. You have to walk away from negative people and walk in the direction of peace.
You want to love yourself and love life, you want to laugh, smile and enjoy. You need to feel good about you and those around you.
You have a choice, you might think it’s a hard choice, but when you stay around toxic negative people, that choice isn’t working too well, the choice to leave is hard, but life will become better when you make the right choices for you and work through the pain, learn from the mistakes and grow into who you want to be.
When you keep extreme toxic people in your life, its always draining, it is always challenging, its always hard, it is always heartbreaking.
They are insecure they try and make you feel bad, they have a problem with you, yet you don’t have a problem with them, you try time and time again to help them, and all that happens is you lose a little more of who you are each and every time.
They subtlety manipulate you, they are jealous of you. They don’t like that you can change develop and grow, people come to your life for a reason, a season and a lifetime, you need to learn what people have entered your life for. You have to recognise when the season that person entered your life for is over.
In order for you to not sink, in order for your career, your personal life your everything to not go under, you need to remove toxic people, if you have gone under, you need to remove toxic people and build yourself right back up.
If you’re not growing with someone, your dying with them, loyalty is not worth it when they are not loyal to you, and all they do is sink you further into depths of despair.
When you’ve been overused and over abused that loyalty needs an expiration date.
Some people are just not right for you. Don’t play the victim. You do not need to be a victim, do not define who you are as a victim, victim mindset will work against you and never for you.
When your mind creates negative thoughts, you don’t have to think them if it’s not happening in that present moment you can change them.
When people invite you to negative places when they invite you to arguments, you have a choice to no longer show up.
No one wants to be alone, but why spend the rest of your life with those who make you feel lonely, don’t allow those who make you feel isolated to rent space in your head for free.
Feeling good, feeling happy, isn’t an opportunity, its a responsibility, its great opportunity’s you have to create for yourself.
Who cares what they or others say about you. Stigmas, or what others say, does not define who you are, you can not control those around you. You can control you. With good intentions, there is no wrong way or right way to live your live fro you.
The people you invite into your life is going to have a massive impact on how you feel.
You may not have to know what they were in the beginning, they play a good part of being a good person, you may not understand in the middle, but once you do know, it’s time to face your fears, face your own insecurities, lose the guilt and walk away, you can not help those unwilling to help themselves. You can help you.
Love yourself enough, you remove toxic people from your life, find those who raise you, leave those who drain you.
Walk with those who want to grow with you, who want to better themselves, who want to give back and help others, and there’s nothing wrong with trying to help and giving to others, you just need to do it with the right people.
Want better for you, take the baby steps to do better for you, make the choices that are right for you. Walk with those who bring the best out in you. Not the worst out in you.
You want better for you, and you deserve better for you, do what’s right for you.
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Elizabeth Shaw is not a Doctor or a therapist. She is a mother of five, a blogger, a survivor of narcissistic abuse, and a life coach, She always recommends you get the support you feel comfortable and happy with. Finding the right support for you. Elizabeth has partnered with BetterHelp (Sponsored.) where you will be matched with a licensed councillor, who specialises in recovery from this kind of abuse.