A narcissistic parent can be defined as someone who lacks empathy, prioritizes their own needs over their children’s, and has a grandiose sense of self-importance. Narcissistic parents can cause a lot of emotional damage to their children, and the impact of such emotional damage can last a lifetime.
Growing up with a narcissistic parent can be problematic as it can lead to feelings of low self-esteem, emotional dysregulation, and an inability to trust others. But, worry not. It is possible to cope with a narcissistic parent and heal from the harm they have caused. Below we have mentioned a few ways that can help you cope with a narcissistic parent:
One of the most important things you can do is to set boundaries with your narcissistic parent. This can be a difficult thing to accomplish, as narcissistic parents often do not respect boundaries, however, for your benefit, this is something that you need to do.
Making an abrupt change all of a sudden is hard. Start by setting small boundaries, such as not responding to texts or calls at certain times, or not visiting them when they are abusive. When you will start with these little things, you will gain more confidence. As you become more confident, you can set more significant boundaries, such as limiting contact or cutting off the relationship completely.
Self-care is necessary to lead a good life but it is even more critical when dealing with narcissistic parents. Self-care includes activities that help you take care of your physical, emotional, and mental well-being. This can include exercise, meditation, therapy, and spending time with people who support and uplift you.
Remember that you should always prioritize yourself, practice self-care and not feel guilty about it, as your emotional health is essential in coping with a narcissistic parent.
Learn to Embrace Your Feelings
Growing up with a narcissistic parent can lead to mixed feelings of anger, sadness, and confusion. It is essential to embrace these feelings and process them rather than ignoring or suppressing them. Suppressing feelings or ignoring them is considered bad for your emotional health and when you are dealing with a narcissistic parent, it is even more harmful.
Embracing your feelings can be done through therapy, journaling, or talking to a trusted friend. By embracing your feelings, you can begin to heal from the emotional harm caused by your narcissistic parent.
Identify and Challenge Negative Thoughts
Narcissistic parents tend to make negative comments about their children, which can lead to feelings of low self-esteem and a lack of confidence. These negative thoughts can be fought by identifying and challenging them. This can be done through things like positive self-talk, seeking feedback from trusted friends, and practicing self-compassion.
When you have identified negative thoughts and started challenging them, it will become easier for you to rebuild your self-esteem and self-confidence, which are necessary to lead a healthy life.
Dealing with a narcissistic parent isn’t easy and can be incredibly isolating, but it is important to seek support from others. This can be done through therapy, support groups, or talking to trusted friends or family members. Having people with whom you can talk and rely upon in difficult situations can provide a sense of comfort and help you feel less alone in your struggles.
Forgive, but Don’t Forget
Remember that if you want to heal from the emotional trauma caused by a narcissistic parent, forgiveness is imperative. However, it is essential to remember that forgiveness does not mean forgetting the harm that has been done to you. Instead, forgiveness means releasing the anger and resentment you hold towards your parent, which can help to reduce feelings of stress and anxiety but it doesn’t mean forgetting all the emotional harm that they have caused to you.
Coping with a narcissistic parent can be a challenging journey, but it is possible to heal from the emotional harm they have caused. By setting boundaries, practicing self-care, embracing your feelings, identifying and challenging negative thoughts, seeking support, and forgiving, but not forgetting, you can begin to heal and rebuild your self-esteem and confidence. If you are struggling with a narcissistic parent, it is important to reach out for support and not feel ashamed or guilty about it. Remember, you are not alone, and healing is possible.