Friday, April 29, 2011

Living in the Shadow of A Narcissistic Sibling

The battles of childhood continue through adulthood in the narcissistic family.If mother or father is a narcissist or the two of them are a dynamic duo, there is hell to pay if you haven't been chosen as their royal son or daughter.

I communicate with many siblings of narcissistic brothers and sisters who made every effort to do their best at school, obey the rules at home and to be respectful to their parents. None of this mattered. If you got straight A's and you weren't the golden child, narcissistic mother wouldn't pay any attention to your accomplishment. With a wave of her hand she was off to another subject of greater importance to her. Often the non-narcissistic child bends over backwards to be especially thoughtful to the narcissistic parent. In response the parent is even more demanding and if you perform all of your duties perfectly, it is still not enough. The narcissistic parent constantly throws cruel projections on to these victimized children. There is a complete distortion of reality with narcissists. A child living under these conditions feels in constant emotional peril. He/she is living in the dark shadow of cruel, even monstrous human being. If other children in the family are budding narcissists, there is a collusion that goes on among them that makes life impossible forachild who is doing his best. The emotional pain of being constantly criticized and in some ways treated sadistically is more than one can bear. Many of these children  suffer severe stress reactions, even PTSD as a result of this horrendous child abuse.

The narcissistically abused child does the best she/he can to survive and often leave the family home as soon as possible. Many of these courageous children depart the home early, find other relatives who believe their stories of abuse. Others spend a lot of time in the homes of friends to find some area of peace. Children who prevail who come out of the shadow of their narcissistic sibling(s) and/or narcissistic parent are extraordinary human beings. They use their motivation to become more independent, to find healthy role models, to further their educations and to carve out a life for themselves. I have been in communication with many adult children raised with narcissistic siblings who have re-created their lives. They have been through a long process of healing that sometimes involves quality psychotherapy, close relationships with people who support them, establishing healing practices of meditation, gentle yoga, qi gong and other modalities that restore wholeness on every level. To learn about every facet of the narcissistic personality disorder, visit my website: 

Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.
Telephone Consultation: United States and International
Book: Freeing Yourself from the Narcissist in Your Life
Buy the book: and amazon kindle edition

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