Here’s another writing I found in my Archived files this past week.
/// D ~ 01-08-2021
Do any of you have parents whom no matter how old you are, no matter what you do, no matter how much money you make, there is always a negative remark? A criticism, despite the effort you put into whatever it was you did? Is it possible you have Narcissistic Parents?
Many folks have narcissistic parents yet all they feel is defensive. In fact, I’ve been on the defensive most of my life due to the continual criticism I received as the child of a narcissistic parent and it tends to spill over into other avenues of my life. I’ve found that even with constructive criticism I am on the defensive; it’s difficult to separate the two – The authority of a Parent versus the authority of a Boss.
This weekend was my youngest son’s birthday so we made arrangements to get together today, Sunday. I thought it might be nice to include my mother even though she’d already been up to celebrate both the boys’ birthdays. I picked her up at the ferry and we had a very nice convo on the way home, I opened the door, we walked in, the house looked really nice for her visit, she sat down at the kitchen table as I was extracting the food to be warmed from the fridge. As we were settling into a convo, she said, “Oh look, you bought roses; they’re beautiful.”
Everything was going well till she said, “You knowwww . . . . . you can’t afford roses.” Enter defensive mode. I started explaining that I hadn’t bought fresh flowers in quite some time, that normally I have an arrangement of silk flowers that are on my table most weeks. Not only defensive mode, but also explanatory mode. WHY? WHY? WHY? Why do I do this? Why do I let her remarks get to me? Why do I explain my actions? WHY? Defensive mode. Why?
I was almost in tears. Here I am trying to do something really nice by inviting everyone to get together [again] and I catch crap for my efforts. No one complained about the nice dinner I cooked, but couldn’t afford. Nooooo . . . . It was the roses we didn’t need; they weren’t essential to the meal. They were ‘extras’ and I can’t afford ‘extras’. She said, “I’m just saying.” “Yes Mom, you’re always ‘just saying’ something to make me feel like crap. Thanks!”
As I was clearing the dinner dishes and cleaning up a tad while our food digested prior to having cake, she asked again . . . This question comes up every time I see her and every time I say the same thing. “So, how far behind are you on your mortgage?” “Mom, I’m not behind on my mortgage!” “Oh, you said you were.” “Mom! That was two years ago and every time you’ve asked me since then I tell you the same thing; I am not behind on my mortgage.”
I went to counseling for two years to combat all this; things were looking up. Why just this past week while we were making plans for her to come up, I’d noted I was going to made beef stew. She said, “You know you’ve got put it away in the fridge while it’s cooling; you can’t leave it out.” In the past I’d have defensively said something in a very snippy voice to the effect of: ‘I know how to cook, I’m not stupid and stop treating me like I’m a braindead child without a clue!’ My reply? “Yes mother. I’ve been cooking for quite a few years now; thanks for the advice.” Even I was impressed and relayed the convo to my oldest son.
Just as it appears our relationship is getting better the antics return. Darn!
While venturing through the “She Writes” website this evening, 10-25-10, I happened upon this article and weblink to help not only myself with the issues described above, but I believe it will help many folks in the same predicament as myself.
The article is written by Elaine Shpungin, Ph.D.:
Also check out: Wikipedia