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Things Narcissistic Mothers Say to Their Children

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There are a few telltale indicators that your mother may be narcissistic. These include her frequent desire for praise and attention from others around her, her incapacity to own up to mistakes and take criticism from others, and her lack of empathy for your needs and feelings. She may also criticize your decisions, expect perfection from you in all facets of your life, and coerce you into doing things that suit her.

Children of narcissistic mothers frequently experience feelings of continuous criticism and unfulfilled expectations. Narcissistic mothers can manipulate their children by saying things like “you’re too sensitive” or “I was just kidding,” which can range from insulting comments to gaslighting. Such manipulative tactics put the youngsters in a state of anxiety and uncertainty, which makes it difficult for them to feel confident in who they are. Should you observe such actions in your mother, it can indicate narcissistic tendencies.

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47 examples of things narcissistic mothers say to their children

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1. Continuously critically evaluate your actions.

Moms with narcissistic tendencies frequently find fault with everything their kids do, regardless of how minor or unimportant. The remarks can be painful and are typically derogatory and demeaning. These remarks may be critical of a child’s talents, relationships, or professional decisions. The narcissistic mother uses her child’s frequent criticism as a means of control and power in the relationship. The child’s self-esteem may also sustain long-term emotional harm as a result of these critiques.

  • “You will never amount to anything”
  • ”You should have done better”
  • “I can’t believe how lazy you are”
  • ”I’m not a fan of the boyfriend you are seeing.”
  • ”Even your friends are using you”

2. Using Guilt-trip

Guilt-tripping is another tactic used by narcissistic moms to manipulate and control their kids into doing what they want. Guilt-tripping can take many different forms, such as implying that the child is unappreciative of everything she has done for them, using guilt as a tool to discipline them for disobeying her standards or making the child feel inadequate by comparing them to other people. Narcissistic moms frequently employ the method of guilt-tripping as a means of controlling and manipulating their children, and it can cause long-term emotional harm to both partners.

  • “I did so much for you”
  • “You owe me”
  • “It was all for nothing”
  • “You are the reason me and your father separated
  • “If your friend can do it, why can’t you?”
  • “Do you think I do all this for nothing?”

3. Gaslighting

A psychological manipulation technique known as “gaslighting” involves one person tricking another into doubting their perceptions, memories, and beliefs. It entails persistently rejecting facts, placing the responsibility elsewhere, or contradicting the victim until they start to doubt themselves. It can result in profound psychological discomfort, which can make one feel helpless and confused. Gaslighting’s ultimate objective is to manipulate the victim psychologically and threaten their mental health. Gaslighting is a severe behavior that should not be tolerated since it might damage a person’s self-esteem and confidence in the long run.

  • “You’re too sensitive.”
  • “You’re imagining things.”
  • “You must be misunderstanding me.”
  • “You can’t do anything right.”
  • “You’re being too emotional/irrational/overreacting/blown out of proportion”
  • “It’s all in your head.”

4. Lowering confidence

The self-confidence of children raised by narcissistic mothers might suffer greatly. These mothers instill feelings of inadequacy, incompetence, and insecurity in their children by constantly criticizing and invalidating them. Since their moms do not provide it, children raised in this manner are also taught to look outside of themselves for validation or approval. In addition, narcissistic mothers might even go so far as to instill in their kids the belief that they are unfit to achieve in life, which over time lowers their self-worth and confidence.

  • “Why can’t you be more like your siblings?”
  • “You’ll never make it in life.”
  • “Your ideas are worthless”
  • “No one else will ever care about you as I do.”
  • “I’m the only one who understands you”

5. Having favorites

Mothers with personality disorders frequently say things that support their preference for one child over another. They can claim that, in comparison to their siblings, the preferred child is more gifted, intelligent, or unique in some other manner. When it comes to their less fortunate offspring, narcissistic mothers can be vicious and nasty, typically enjoying the opportunity to disparage or undermine them to boost their egos. In the end, children who are exposed to these harmful phrases suffer long-term emotional harm.

  • “You’re not as special as your brother/sister.”
  • “There’s nothing about you that stands out like there is with your brothers”
  • “You can never measure up to the standards set by your cousins”
  • “I wish you were more like them.”
  • “You’re not worth my time and energy.”

6. Her way or no way

Mothers with narcissistic tendencies sometimes insist that their children follow their every move or face repercussions. They frequently employ a variety of strategies, like manipulation and guilt, to coerce their kids into complying. Growing up in this kind of setting makes children believe that they are incapable of doing anything “right” and that their mother would never be satisfied with their efforts.

  • “There is only one right answer, and that’s mine.”
  • “Do as I say, not as I do.”
  • “You know I can’t be happy if things aren’t done my way.”
  • “If you keep arguing with me, then this won’t end well”

7. Creating drama

Dramatic or chaotic settings are frequently created by narcissistic mothers to satisfy their desires. Parents could set unreasonable expectations for their kids and then get upset if the kids can’t live up to them. This may result in consequence-based discipline when the mother alternates between blaming her child for falling short of expectations and using emotional abuse, manipulation, and guilt-tripping as forms of punishment. These are strategies that narcissistic mothers employ to take back control when they feel like they are losing it in other domains.

  • “My daughter won’t let me get to know my grandkids.”
  • “After I bought a new dress, my son told me it was awful.”
  •  “It’s like no one cares about me, not even on my birthday – I didn’t get a card!”
  • “No one offered assistance when my dog was sick and injured.”
  • “Your brother never cared for your spouse very much.”

8. Everything is about them

A narcissist’s world is their own; everything else is irrelevant. They see everyone around them as existing only to serve their needs, and themselves as the center of their universe. Additionally, they treat their kids with such disdain because they think they wouldn’t exist without them. The youngster may experience shame as a result of this and find it difficult to feel heard or seen.

  • “All you care about is yourself.”
  • “My life has been wasted on you.”
  • “If it weren’t for helping raise you, I would have had a career”
  • “You’re nothing without me”
  • “I dedicated my life to providing for you, but I get nothing out of it.”

9. Competing with their children

Narcissistic mothers frequently compete excessively with their offspring. They may see their children as competitors who must always be outperformed, which drives them to feel superior to or better than them. They believe that they must always be one step ahead of the game and triumph in every circumstance. When a youngster feels like they can’t measure up to their mother’s high expectations, it can be detrimental to their self-esteem and the relationship between them and their parents.

  • “I was so much younger when I started learning new languages”
  • “Your hair is a mess; did you get it from your father?”
  • “My physique is superior to yours.”
  • “It looks like you rushed getting dressed. You don’t have my eye for fashion.”
  • “You’re so clever. Must be my genes.”
  • “Your cooking is amazing, but I think a few more lessons from the pros wouldn’t hurt.”

Life with a narcissistic mother can be very difficult to navigate. Establishing limits and establishing a personal network of support is crucial. Therapists, self-help books, internet forums, and family members or other reliable individuals who are willing to lend a sympathetic ear are a few beneficial resources. In the end, you should aim to emotionally safeguard yourself by keeping a healthy distance from the narcissist. By doing this, you can somewhat ease the burden of having a narcissistic mother.

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