Dealing With Narcissistic Parents: 5 Practical Things You Can To Safeguard Yourself!

dealing with narcissistic parents

Have you ever felt that your parents think only about themselves, and you always have to play the second fiddle? In case you’re nodding right now, chances are high that you are dealing with narcissistic parents

Parental narcissism is a phrase used to describe one or both of the parents being self-centered and concerned mainly with their own needs and desires. 

Dealing With Narcissistic Parents
Dealing with narcissistic parents: 5 practical things you can to safeguard yourself!

As a result, little thought or no thought at all is given to what their children might want or how they may feel about things. It’s as though they see themselves as the main character in a performance while casting you into a minor role.

Dealing with narcissistic parents can be hard as they often pretend to be self-sacrificing individuals who always put others before themselves but subtly manipulate situations so everything still revolves around them.

They also may appear like super moms or super dads, constantly participating in their kids’ activities and taking up leadership positions at school or within the community in general. 

However, behind this seemingly perfect façade lurks an insatiable appetite for attention and control. For this reason, we’ll give you some helpful tips for dealing with narcissistic parents and safeguarding yourself. 

What Narcissistic Parents Usually Do?

These are the signs of narcissistic parents — they might not be what you’re experiencing, but these are things narcissistic parents usually do. Understand these signs as they can help you in coping with narcissistic parents. 

1. The Illusion of Selflessness

Usually, narcissistic parents will assume roles like class parents, PTO presidents, or sports coaches. They seem to be deeply involved for their kids’ sake; however, they do this just for attention and control over everything.

Have you ever seen your parent volunteer themselves in every possible activity not because they want to help but because they need recognition and want to dictate the story?

2. Overly Involved in Your Adult Life

Coping with narcissistic parents can also be a challenge in your adult life, as a narcissistic parent’s involvement does not stop as you grow up; in fact, it may increase even more.

Dealing With Narcissistic Parents
Dealing with narcissistic parents: 5 practical things you can to safeguard yourself!

For example, when you’re planning a major event such as a marriage and fail to meet their demands, they threaten not to attend.

Or whenever you try sharing your own news with them, it quickly turns back into being about them again. If you have children yourself, they might try taking over parenting roles sidelining the other parent so that everything still revolves around them.

3. Emotional Manipulation Is Parental Narcissism

Dealing with narcissistic parents is difficult as they emotionally manipulate people by praising or criticizing them; this is done to keep one on track.

Has your parent ever given you glowing compliments at one moment only to tear you down with harsh criticism at the next? 

This kind of behavior makes a person feel insecure about themselves and constantly look for approval from such people who never clearly indicate where one stands.

Read More: 6 Ways Parents Set Their Children Up For Failure

4. Lack Of Genuine Understanding

Narcissistic parents tend to view children as extensions rather than individuals who have thoughts and feelings of their own too. While coping with narcissistic parents you may start to lose your own identity and self-being leaving in a void with no feelings. 

They can struggle with comprehending or accepting other peoples’ emotions while responding angrily or anxiously if they sense any form of criticism against them or fear rejection from others themselves. 

Do any situations affect only how things make them feel without recognizing your own emotions first?

Ask yourself the following questions to determine if you are under parental narcissism as it can help you in dealing with narcissistic parents:

  • Can they accept criticism without becoming defensive?
  • Are they too worried about what people think of them?
  • Do they require constant praise and acknowledgment from you?
  • Do they often bring up how much they do for you, making it seem like you owe them something?
  • Do you feel like you have to meet their expectations for them to love and approve of you?
  • Is there anything that your parent does to get attention that makes you uncomfortable or seems excessive?

Understanding narcissistic parenting dynamics can help us navigate our relationships better and provide us with tools and confidence for coping with narcissistic parents.

We must establish healthy boundaries and reach out for support when dealing with narcissistic parents because we deserve recognition as individuals not just extensions of our parents’ selves.

Read More: 10 Subtle Signs Your Family Hates You And How To Deal With Them!

5 Tips For Dealing With Narcissistic Parents

Dealing with parents who exhibit narcissistic behaviors can be trying. However, there are several ways you can approach this relationship while still maintaining your mental health.

Dealing With Narcissistic Parents
Dealing with narcissistic parents: 5 practical things you can to safeguard yourself!

The following are some methods that you could try for dealing with narcissistic parents:

1. Managing toxic parents With Zero Contact

Sometimes the only healthy choice is to remove oneself completely from any type of interaction or relationship with another person.

This step becomes necessary when one realizes that they have tried many times unsuccessfully to make things better and that continuing to relate only worsens their mental well-being thereby compromising their health.

If talking or being around your parent makes you feel scared, depressed or anxious then it might be time for no more communication until later on after getting better. 

In such situations always ensure that your mind comes first since it is crucial and professional help should be sought when managing toxic parents as well as planning what comes next.

Cut off all forms of communication including phone calls texts social media interactions and in-person visits is a good way for coping with narcissistic parents. If need be let other family members know so they don’t talk about them behind your back or push you into reconciling.

2. Low Contact

For those who find complete cutoff too harsh or impossible due to various reasons, reducing the number of interactions as well as setting boundaries is another option worth considering for dealing with narcissistic parents.

This may involve seeing each other only during important events e.g.; birthdays holidays, restricting phone calls/ texts, or shortening visits. 

Having people around during visits can help prevent conflicts among others which bring positive energy between all parties involved in addition fun activities done together may create a good atmosphere too.

It would also be advisable to plan for self-care activities after meeting them such as hanging out with supportive pals engaging in hobbies one loves most or simply taking time out relax unwind etc.

Read More: 10 Harmful Excuses To Abuse By Toxic Parents! Watch Out

3. Keeping Communication Open

If you choose to stay engaged with your narcissistic parent, you must establish clear boundaries and be mindful in all your interactions.

It is not like other relationships so understand that too. You might not be able to share deep thoughts or feelings but still can spend time together around what makes him/her happy.

Remember that this person’s behavior reflects their condition of being a narcissist rather than reflecting any truth about anything at all! Therefore try not taking what they say personally and recognize it as such if they say or do something hurtful.

Find areas where there is potential for connection on a deeper level with your parent i.e., Do they like receiving gifts? Do both of you have common hobbies? These are the kinds of positive contacts one should maintain when managing toxic parents.

When dealing with narcissistic parents giving feedback often leads them to become defensive; thus consider whether addressing certain matters will result in outbursts or whether should you let go of such things altogether.

Read More: Dealing With Estranged Family: 7 Effective Tips You Should Know!

4. Take Care Of Yourself

Taking care of oneself becomes very crucial while living under one roof with a self-absorbed mom/dad. What can I do besides that? Read books; work out in gymnasiums or parks alone/with friends who understand me better than anybody else does etcetera…

Recharge through engaging activities that bring joy back into life e.g., reading novels, jogging at dawn until sunrise sets over.

5. Get Help

Getting help becomes necessary when handling difficult situations with one’s father/mother who suffers from this mental disorder called narcissism. What could serve as a solution? Go see a therapist; join support groups where people have gone through similar circumstances as mine.

Such places provide an opportunity for us to talk about our feelings openly without being judged by others who might not understand what it feels like to be raised by someone whose self-obsession knows no bounds or limits

And who set upon its selfishness towards another human life brought into existence solely for the sake of serving his/her egotistical needs at the expense thereof. Don’t be angry at those people, they might be able to actually help you in managing toxic parents!

Professional guidance or peer-shared experiences can equip individual skills required when you are dealing with narcissistic parents. So do not shy away from getting help. 

Read More: 10 Subtle Signs You Might Be the Family Scapegoat and How to Cope!

A Word From Mind Family

At Mind Family, we understand the complexities and emotional toll of dealing with narcissistic parents. Remember to prioritize your mental health through self-care practices that rejuvenate and restore your well-being. 

Whether it’s finding solace in a good book, staying active with exercise, or seeking comfort in the company of supportive friends, these activities can provide the strength needed for managing toxic parents.

Above all, know that your experiences are valid, and taking steps to protect your well-being is a courageous act. 

Remember, at Mind Family, we’re here to support you every step of the way. You deserve to live a life where your emotional well-being is valued and protected.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What is Parental Narcissism? 

Parental narcissism involves self-centered behavior where a parent prioritizes their own needs over their child’s emotional well-being, often seeking admiration and control.

2. What are the signs of narcissistic parents? 

Signs include grandiosity, excessive need for admiration, lack of empathy, manipulation, and a sense of entitlement over others’ feelings and needs.

3. What are some tips for dealing with narcissistic parents? 

Set clear boundaries, prioritize self-care, seek support from therapists or support groups, limit contact if necessary, and refrain from engaging in unnecessary arguments or seeking validation.

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