Reddit Reddit reviews Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life

We found 97 Reddit comments about Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life. Here are the top ones, ranked by their Reddit score.

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Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life
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97 Reddit comments about Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life:

u/ManForReal · 36 pointsr/JUSTNOMIL

You should be able to filter their messages to a folder whether you're on an iPhone or an Android.

Then texts go to 'their' folder automatically. You don't have to see them but can check the folder daily, every couple of days or weekly (whatever works for you) & skim msgs for craziness.

This is better than blocking them because it lets you monitor texts on your schedule & gives you a record if legal action becomes appropriate.

If FIL comes after y'all you may have to send them a No Contact letter (certified, return receipt) & call the police if he shows up at your front door & won't leave. You can call the cops without a letter but it provides the authorities more reason to keep them away.

Relax as much as you can. You're adults. They can't guilt you or DH if you don't care. If they try to interfere in your lives you can stop them. Keeping them out of your lives is less stressful than allowing their ugliness / crazy in. Especially with children.

Here's /u/madpiratebippy 's reading list, cut & pasted from a post with her comments:

  • Drama of the Gifted Child

    by Alice Miller. This was THE BOOK that started to set me free. It's a must read book for people with narc/abusive parents and their partners, in my opinion.

  • Toxic Parents

    is a classic about how to see the manipulative patterns from abusive parents and get free of them.

  • Wolf in Sheep's Clothing

    by Dr. George Simon. Man has a PhD in manipulation, and breaks down what the manipulators DO and how to shut it down. He's studied this for 20 years and it's AMAZING.

    Take a deep breath & share your experiences & questions here. You're not alone. Y'all can do this.

    EDIT: fixed link (thanks /u/Starkmoon)
u/sexybug · 23 pointsr/sex

You need to change your passwords and cut her off iphone tracking. FindMyFriends is a consensual tracking app. Remove your consent. If she has access to findmyiphone, change your Apple ID password, too.

This kind of controlling is not okay.

I've never read this, but I've seen it heartily recommended:

Edit: forgot a letter

u/not-moses · 18 pointsr/raisedbynarcissists

Here are some excellent books on narcissistic parenting and its upshots (all available on, etc):

Nina Brown's Children of the Self-Absorbed: A Grown-Up's Guide to Getting Over Narcissistic Parents

Eleanor Payson's The Wizard of Oz and other Narcissists: Coping with the One-Way Relationship in Work, Love, and Family

Lindsay Gibson's Adult Children of Emotionally Immature Parents: How to Heal from Distant, Rejecting, or Self-Involved Parents

Elan Golomb's Trapped in the Mirror: Adult Children of Narcissists in the Struggle for Self

Susan Forward's Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life (a bit long in tooth now, but still useful) and Emotional Blackmail: When the People in Your Life Use Fear, Obligation, and Guilt to Manipulate You

Kimberlee Roth & Frieda Friedman's Surviving a Borderline Parent: How to Heal Your Childhood Wounds & Build Trust, Boundaries, and Self-Esteem

(I've read -- actually deeply studied, using each as a workbook -- all of them, and feel comfortable recommending them.

Further, the dynamics of growing up in such families are strikingly similar to what happens in cults. If one is conditioned, socialized, habituated and normalized to a particular form of abuse (before one can recognize the abuse as such) in childhood, it is often the case that one will grow up to seek intimates who are likely to repeat the same form of traumatization to which they were normalized as children. In my case, I took my unconscious -- and unprocessed -- abuse into a series of cult and other co-dependent workplace and relationship situations. If one understands what happens in cults, one often gets a very clear picture of what happened in their own families of origin with narcissistic parents.

u/CassandraCubed · 14 pointsr/raisedbynarcissists

Here are some links on forgiveness which you may find helpful:

/u/invah's comment and compilation of links on forgiveness

Emily Yoffee's excellent article

Sister Renee's take on forgiveness over at Luke 17.3 ministries

Susan Forward also has some very useful writings on forgiveness in her book Toxic Parents

My personal experience has been that trying to prematurely forgive my nmother was a huge hindrance to my healing from the hurts she heaped on me, not a help. All it did was put me back in harm's way.

In the end, what worked for me was to accept that my nmother was never going to change, she was never going to apologize, and she was never going to stop, regardless of her occasional, random variations. She was never going to own her part in the process.

From your description above, it sounds like your mother is demanding absolution for her actions against you. She's not offering repentance for her behavior, and amends for the damage she has done as the first steps in the process of forgiveness. She won't take any responsibility for her behavior, and she wants you to do all the work...

Sticking around and tolerating bad behavior when the aggressor hasn't taken responsibility for their actions or changed their ways has a higher price than you might think at first.

In the end, what worked for me was going NC. My take on NC is don't do it one second earlier than you have to -- but don't stick around one second longer than you have to, once it's clear that it's the best option. I wasted literally decades of my life, trying to either fix the relationship with my nmother, or like you've described, trying to tolerate her behavior.

Big hugs (if you want them), because dealing with this cr&p is HARD.

u/carpetplaydohx2 · 14 pointsr/GenderCritical

May I suggest something? Splurge on something nice and pampering for the person who's been mothering the neglected, abused child inside you: you.

Get your mom a card or some flowers if you want, also, but do something nice for yourself. Mothering ourselves after a lifetime of hurt is one of the toughest, but also most rewarding, jobs.

Also a book suggestion, if you're interested: Toxic Parents, by Dr. Susan Forward.

u/Anonnymoose73 · 13 pointsr/JUSTNOMIL

I would recommend the book Toxic Parents to help you recognize and understand the patterns of abuse that you've been conditioned to accept as normal. It's not that you're an "underdeveloped child;" it's that you've been trained to normalize the bad behavior.

Also, I'm sure you'll get a choir of people singing it, but therapy. Therapy therapy therapy. Individual, couples, or group, whatever seems best for you, but get some.

u/my_throwaway_ac · 11 pointsr/offmychest

You're doing the right thing. Congratulations on taking this step to improve your life.

A book I found helpful dealing with my own family situation (some similarities) was Toxic Parents. It's a hard thing when you don't have parents you can talk with for encouragement, support, and so on, but it's extremely important to learn it's not your fault when this happens. Took me a while to learn that one.

u/nanaimo · 11 pointsr/QueerEye

That's amazing!

Therapy is always a good idea but it's not possible for everyone. I can vouch that these books/workbooks contain accurate, helpful info. & tips. DM me for help finding digital copies.

Toxic Parents

  • Low self-esteem nearly always begins in childhood. This is an extremely helpful book.

    Self Esteem (3rd Edition)

  • Thorough and practical!

    The CBT Workbook for Depression (2nd Ed)

  • The specific activities in chapters 16-18 are esp. great. Really helpful things you can actually do, rather than vague advice.

    The Mindful Way Workbook for Depression

  • There are MANY books about mindfulness. Not all are good. This is easy to read, and jumps right into teaching skills.

    Other good books:

    The Dance of Anger

  • If you struggle with self-esteem, often you silence your anger rather than expressing it. This book is "for women" but in reality the info. can help anyone, esp. the concept of family "triangles".

    Kid Confidence

  • For parents. 2019 book gives the very latest info. on raising resilient kids.
u/Proeliata · 10 pointsr/WTF

I doubt anyone will see this since it's so far down, but although I've never experienced anything like this video, I grew up with an emotionally and verbally abusive parent, and that leaves scars all of its own. I've been working on getting past it for years, and I just wanted to mention that this book is an excellent one to read if you're trying to get over your own demons:

I wish I could recommend it to every single person in this post who's had to go through these problems.

u/argylepancake · 10 pointsr/raisedbynarcissists

Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life by Susan Forward, she also wrote Toxic In-Laws!

This is still my favorite go-to for any abused person. This book very gently informed me that I was the target child (scapegoat) and it was not my fault. She also walks you thru

  • establishing boundaries
  • letter writing examples
  • forgive or not forgive
  • how to talk to your Golden Child/favored siblings about things they didn't see/know

    Specifically for those of us raised by narcissists:

    Why is it All About You?: The Seven Deadly Sins of Narcissism by Sandy Hotchkiss

    The best thing in this book is how she lays out projection and the transference of the narcissist's shame onto the child and how that messes us up. I have dozens of post-it flags in this book.
u/disbelief12 · 9 pointsr/raisedbynarcissists

You are very welcome. I feel like I get the best perspective and ideas from reading this sub.

After I wrote that, I realized that I actually have a letter like this, though I didn't write it to myself. It was a letter to my Nmom that I started drafting while I was dealing with her extinction burst last summer. I don't know if you have read the book Toxic Parents, but there is a template in there for writing your parent a letter -- I believe it goes "This is what you did, this is how it made me feel, this is how it has affected my life, and this is what I need from you going forward." So I was following that format, and I went over every last thing she had done to me -- from the very small to the egregious. I got as far as the first 2 topics and started on the 3rd before I ran out of energy (and ultimately decided to send her a completely different letter to enforce my boundaries). But I stumbled across this letter a few weeks ago and holy crap did it really hit me how much she has done to me that is not okay. Like seriously not okay. And at the time I wrote it, I don't think I even fully grasped how not okay a lot of that stuff was.

Anyway, my point is just that I can understand the emotional impact of going back and reading a letter that lays bare all of the abusive behavior that you've experienced. It really does make me say 'fuck you' to her all over again.

Best wishes to you.

u/Hacksaw86 · 8 pointsr/TwoXChromosomes

Yes, I spent a short time in therapy to deal with an emotionally abusive dad. It helped me really come to terms with the fact that bad people can be parents too. (That might sound like a silly realization but it really helped me, as I couldn't really grasp what I had done to deserve getting stuck with him as a father). A few books my therapist recommended helped too:

There's also /r/raisedbynarcissists, which might be a good place for you to talk to people who can understand what it's like to have an emotionally abusive parent.

u/nomorerainonmyparade · 7 pointsr/raisedbynarcissists

Look for reciprocity - any relationship, romantic or platonic, will have its gives and takes. There will be problems, but you should both be willing to work it out. I used to go from 0-100 in relationships and place unrealistic expectations on others. They're not mind readers, and a lot of them don't understand the aftermath of relationships with Ns.

It's normal to be paranoid, but there are people out there who legitimately want to help and be friends. They may just think that you need to hear that you are loved and supported. Some people use "love" flippantly, some don't. It's harder to wait and see where a relationship goes and much easier to cut and run, but running because you're afraid will kill some potentially good relationships.

Ns teach their children to fear others, to fear being known, because everything will be used against you. Healthy relationships are not like that, but you do need to figure out how to identify other people's boundaries and create your own. For me, if friends said "hey, you don't need to pay rent", I'd probably make the offer to pay or chip in every couple of months or so just to be sure, or say something like "if that changes, please let me know". Ns will never "treat others how you'd like to be treated", but others will, and that might be what your friends are doing. At the same time, be aware of manipulation through fear/guilt/obligation by friends. Some know they're doing it, some don't.

These helped me:

Boundaries: When to Say Yes, How to Say No To Take Control of Your Life

Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life

Emotional Blackmail: When the People in Your Life Use Fear, Obligation, and Guilt to Manipulate You

u/madpiratebippy · 7 pointsr/JUSTNOMIL

It's also the first google result if you look for Toxic Parents. I can never remember the author's name.

u/BlunderLikeARicochet · 6 pointsr/keto

Please read this book: Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life

Please. It's far more helpful than any short reddit comment.

u/bunnylover726 · 6 pointsr/JUSTNOMIL

> I don't even know where to continue.

I think I can give you a few places to start. First off, what your mom was doing to you is sometimes called "emotional incest". I've found in my personal experience that having a name for my parents' dysfunctional behavior helps me to realize that I'm not the crazy one, it helps me to find resources, and it helps me to heal. If you Google "emotional incest" as your search term, you'll find a lot to look at. There are also a few books out there about the topic, but I haven't gotten around to reading them yet and I wouldn't feel comfortable giving recommendations for something I haven't read myself.

Unfortunately, most of the writing I've found on it assumes that it's an opposite sex parent/child, but I think that my mother also forced emotionally incestuous relationships on children of different genders. You're not alone. She used me (female) as her main emotional support for years, but not to the same extent as your mom. Then when I up and left, she switched to targeting my brother. It's tough to talk about and I can understand why you'd feel extra crazy because of it, but you're not. I think that my mother's demented emotional usage of me in addition to other factors harmed my ability to connect to other women for a while.

> She constantly called me a lesbian because during these years, I didn't date or have a boyfriend. I want to vomit thinking about this now, because it makes me think she considered her behavior towards me romantic.

You might also want to use the search term "covert incest"- you'll find info that way too. I think your mother was ashamed of her behavior and was projecting her shame onto you.

The website I linked to above, is a very useful resource for learning more about dysfunctional family behaviors. A commenter elsewhere in this thread recommended Adult Children of Alcoholics, and in addition to a local chapter, you should follow their subreddit. It's over at /r/AdultChildren.

If you want a good book recommendation, Toxic Parents by Susan Forward talks about emotionally abusive parents, and she devotes a whole chapter specifically to the struggles of children with alcoholic parents. It is an old enough and popular enough book that you should be able to find it in local library, from a used bookstore, or off a site like thrift books to save you some money. It's a great book to read at the beginning of your healing journey.

The Emotionally Absent Mother, 2nd ed by Jasmin Lee Cori is worth looking for. It is broken into little chunks that make it easier to work through the book without getting emotionally exhausted. It is also packed with journal exercises that you can work on at your own pace. It talks about good mothers, neglectful mothers, and abusive mothers. It compares them, and it offers help for us to mother ourselves, to move forward, and to heal. A lot of books about abusive parents focus a lot on the parent. This book focuses more on us and the path forwards towards healing.

And finally, for a very unusual book recommendation- It's Never Too Late for a Happy Childhood by Claudia Black, the founder of ACOA. It's a picture book. The first time I read it, I cried, because it's full of affirmations for someone who was abused as a child. I have a hard time doing self-affirmations. I feel silly and have trouble finding words to tell myself that I'm a worthwhile human being. This book does it for you- just sit with it, read it slowly, and try to internalize all it has to say. It helps, and it's worth obtaining a copy to own and keep on your shelf for rough days.

I hope that wasn't too much of an info dump, but you mentioned getting a degree in psychology and you seem like a very self-aware and introspective person who would be interested in that. I just wanted to also thank you- you're the first woman I've heard from who was also tangled up in an emotionally incestuous situation with her mother. We deserved better.

u/BonkersVonFeline · 6 pointsr/raisedbynarcissists

Here's a recent post about not loving our N parents that might help show you that you are not the only one who feels this way. I HATED my mother growing up. She was and still is a very unloving, brutal person. Why would I love her? The guilt is probably just societal programming, where not loving and honoring your parents is blasphemous. But if you look at it logically, it makes total sense why we feel this way. How would a dog react to being hit every time it came close to you? Would it love you and try to be affectionate with you? NO. It would probably cower in fear around you or any person, and would snap and attack. Why should we hold ourselves to a different standard than we would any other animal? You get what you give, and what have they given us?

If I were you, I would emancipate myself entirely and ASAP. This is close to what I did. Right at 18, I moved hours away and mostly paid almost all my own bills. My parents really didn't support me too much. I think my mother took out one small school loan and my dad sent me $100 a month, but I could have easily survived without that. I removed ALL ties with them as quickly as I could, because they used anything for manipulation. This really isn't too hard to do.

If you can't do that right now, it sounds like you're detaching emotionally which is good. Maybe you can just keep to yourself and try to survive until you get some physical distance from them. Don't engage them in any way. Only interact with them when you HAVE to. If they hassle you, maybe you can just agree (in principle or even just to placate them) and exit the situation ("yep you're probably right about that, OK gotta go!"). But DO try to get out ASAP. Don't jump into another shitty situation though. See if you can find a female roommate you can stand living with. I wouldn't move in with your boyfriend or another male just out of desperation because I find this usually ends BADLY. But obviously this is up to you. Try to find a place that's SAFE for you and don't just jump from one shitty situation to another.

Then as far as rebuilding your self-esteem, for me I had to get into therapy. If you can do this it could save your life. If that isn't possible, here are a list of cheap books that have helped me immensely (which I recommend reading and working through with or without therapy):

  • Feeling Good and Ten Days To Self-Esteem by David Burns
  • The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
  • Toxic Parents by Susan Forward (I don't agree with her recommendation on confronting your parents but the rest is good.)

    I believe there are a list of resources including a full list of books on the right sidebar too. If you don't like any of these resources, you can ALWAYS find something that will appeal to you if you keep working at it. There is SO much out there for us if we keep at it. Be sure to take breaks too. This work can be exhausting.

    If you can get into Al-Anon that might help too. I personally don't care for 12-step programs, but many people seemed to have been helped by them and Al-Anon is specifically recommended by many books. They say it's for people who have dealt with alcoholics and drug addicts, but I tell you I went to six meetings like they recommend, and it's NO DIFFERENT for those of us who have dealt with narcissism. I've read that all alcoholics are narcissists, so maybe that's why it was so relevant to me. One slogan I picked up that helped a lot is "You Didn't Cause It. You Can't Control It. You Can't Cure It." We didn't cause our parents to be the way that they are, we can't control it (no amount of letter writing, talking, setting boundaries, etc.) and there is nothing we can do to change them. The literature is pretty dismal when it comes to curing narcissism anyway (NPD). Either way, they'd have to want to get help and help themselves, which rarely ever happens. So we have to focus on ourselves and forget about helping them - this is not selfish! We were often groomed to take care of them and our feelings, wants and needs were completely inconsequential. We were just extensions of them. This is probably why it feels so selfish at first to start taking care of ourselves.

    >I'm currently depressed and see no good in life.

    I've been working at this for a LONG time and still feel this way sometimes. I think it's partly due to growing up where "you lose" is the name of the game. Getting your needs met is completely hopeless with N parents, so perhaps that feeling of hopelessness extends to all of life. Plus, hopelessness is a classic symptom of depression. If you feel hopeless, just know that it doesn't mean it's true. Feelings are NOT facts.

    Aside from my other recommendations, I would continue to come here and post and read all that you can read. Claw your way out of this bullshit if you have to. Journaling helps. Get a secure journal NO ONE ELSE will read and just free flow write your thoughts down. If you're feeling terrible, give your feelings a voice. It's like draining the poison from you. Plus if you're doing the work out of Feeling Good, you'll need a good journal to write in daily. My first therapist recommended this for YEARS and I never did it, but I tell it just free flow writing out shit does seem to help tremendously. If you have a Mac, you can use MacJournal, or for Windows there is "The Journal", both of which you can encrypt and password protect. If you want to just write on paper or if you already do just make sure you hide it well.

    The other night I had a bout of terrible depression and you would not BELIEVE the shit that I wrote down about myself ("you're a piece of shit!!!" and stuff like that). I wrote until I just felt "deflated", like I had drained myself. It helped a LOT. I then realized that I hadn't been doing several things for myself that I know have helped in the past, and I have rededicated myself to doing these things daily. Many of these actions I have recommended to you here.

    Hope this helps even in the slightest and good luck to you.
u/[deleted] · 6 pointsr/raisedbynarcissists

People will only treat you the way that you let them treat you. You have to stand up for yourself, and that feeling of sickness and queasiness you get in the pit of your stomach is a result of that new experience. At the end of the day, you owe it to yourself and your integrity to stand up for yourself.

Here are some things your can say:

"I cannot forget what you have done to me. I do not expect an apology, but from this day forth, if you want me in your life, you will never abuse me again."

[After they have treated your poorly], "I do not appreciate how you have treated me."

"Just because I am your [son, daughter], that does not give you the right to abuse me."

Here are some books that you would benefit from reading. Read these books in the order I have laid out for you.

  1. Emotional Blackmail: When the People in Your Life Use Fear, Obligation, and Guilt to Manipulate You

  2. Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life

  3. The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment

    The first book will teach you how to identify and defend yourself against the primary tool of an abuser: emotional blackmail and manipulation. The second book will help you understand and defend against toxic people, especially family members, in your life. The last book will help you quiet the noise of over-thinking and second guessing yourself as a result of the abuse.

    As a teacher and a victim of emotional blackmail, toxic family members, and an Nbrother, I know that right now your life feels like it is out of control and you want it to stop right now. However, read those books, be patient, and allow yourself to heal. Your emotions are healthy. You are not a robot.

    If you cannot afford the books, feel free to message my inbox and we can figure out a way to get you the literature that will change your life.
u/awkward_chrysalis · 5 pointsr/raisedbynarcissists

Therapy should work if they're willing to get it AND stick it out....'s the getting them to therapy consistently that's the hard part. Hahaha...

Plus the therapist has to be a stranger to them. I've heard of it where the N caregiver hooks up with one of their buddy-buddies - which is supposed to be a big no-no in therapy anyway. But if they get their buddy-buddy involved they can just steer the therapy in their own direction.

Most alternative approach: The book ["Toxic Parents"] ( provides a guideline for confrontation if you're willing to go that route. In practice, it's risky though, and you have to do it for the right reasons (for yourself. Not to be mean or to troll, but to state your case & then be ready to accept whatever their reaction is.)

u/Clauderoughly · 5 pointsr/AskReddit

You don't

You need to sit your GF down and get her to read an awesome book

Toxic Parents

You can't do much but she needs to stand up to her folks.

They are dysfunctional alchs who need help, and by keeping them in her life as they are, she is enabling them.

u/Trazac · 5 pointsr/pcmasterrace
u/towerofcrows · 5 pointsr/occult

Some books to check out: Toxic Parents by Susan Forward and Psychic Self-Defense by Dion Fortune. Both books are easy enough to find in pdf format, and are very applicable to this situation.

u/theanarkid · 4 pointsr/Anarchism

Sever your roots.

I know what a bad trip it is, dealing with narcissistic parents.

Try this:

u/flsucks · 4 pointsr/gaybros


Also read this book, it will help you sort through the baggage they've inevitably saddled you with.

u/_jeth · 4 pointsr/BipolarReddit

My mother was a narcissist. Key examples: I was diagnosed with a likely congenital heart condition and at the time of diagnosis we didn't know any prognosis and I was actively in heart failure. She asked me to never discuss it because it was too stressful for her. A year later she was diagnosed with breast cancer and had an excellent prognosis. She called constantly wanting to talk about her condition and at one point became angry with me because I was not willing to tattoo a pink ribbon on my body (for many reasons largely surrounding the sham that is Susan G Komen and Pinkwashing) and declared me a bad daughter.

She was physically abusive, verbally abusive, and emotionally abusive. In high school she hit me, then told my father she would divorce him for intervening and stopping her from hitting me further, and manipulated him into telling me that I had to apologize to her for making her made at me and if I did not I could go to foster care for all he cared and if they did get divorced he definitely wouldn't try to pursue custody of me since that divorce would be my fault. She was still snooping through my things when I was in my thirties when she only had authorization to be in my house to let my dog out. She disowned me because I told her she wasn't very nice to me, and had my father call twenty minutes later to permanent ban me from their house, but four days later pretended nothing happened and expected me to bring her a bag of hot dog buns at work.

With the help of some books I'd been reading I had worked up the nerve to go No Contact and I used the disowning as my springboard to enforce my terms. I made my conditions for future contact clear - she needed to attend anger management; then we needed family counseling. She spent a few years randomly reaching out and pretending nothing had happened - when I would point out my conditions, she would blow up at me. She doesn't know where I live, what my phone number is, and she won't for as long as I live as far as I am concerned. She tracked down my husband this year and he blocked her without hesitation, then told me what had happened. I was full on shaking with this weird mix of fear and anger. She just cannot let it go.

There is a huge, clear difference between Narcicisstic personality disorder and Bipolar. Bipolar means you are depressed and you are manic. My mother never displayed either condition. But she was manipulative, abusive, and everything always circled back to her. It was always about her. She would bitch you out for not making any money and hassle you about applying for a better job, and once you did, she would become angry at you for making more money than she did and needle you to tell her just how much more money you were making because don't you think you're so fucking great. All my friends had parents that went beyond simply tolerating their existence and for years I blamed myself for not being good enough for my parents approval, but the more I read about narcissistic parents the more I realized I could be Bill Gates with billions of dollars and tons of power and I would still be cut down to size by my mother for making her look bad (in her eyes). In the end the No Contact order was the smartest thing I ever did. I have my life back. I feel like the first 31 years of my life are finished and I get a do-over.

If you came from an abusive or narcissistic home, I recommend this book:

u/ziddina · 4 pointsr/exjw

That could be a good thing...


I just linked these two books elsewhere; you might find them interesting:



u/seanomenon · 4 pointsr/alcoholism

You are doing the right thing by kicking this guy out. It's the right thing for you, and also the right thing for him. In an odd way, kicking him out could be doing him a favor. He will have to face the full consequences of his alcoholism. It may force him to deal with his problem sooner.

You've gone above and beyond to help someone, now take care of yourself.

FWIW, this is a common scenario for people who grew up with toxic parents. (Be they alcoholic, addict, abusive, or similar.) We tend to feel a responsibility to take care of everything and fix everything, sometimes to our own detriment. There are two good books about the subject you may be interested in:

Adult Children of Alcoholics by Janet Woititz.

Toxic Parents by Susan Forward.

u/FifteenthPen · 4 pointsr/getting_over_it

>'s a lonely world without parents.

This is true, but it's still a better world than one with toxic parents.

If you haven't read it already, I highly recommend Susan Forward's "Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy". It was very helpful for me in understanding that I was justified in cutting off contact with my parents, and that my life is better without them in it.

u/Lordica · 3 pointsr/ihaveissues

Man, this comment nails it. The problem is your mothers, not yours. Finding a way to deal with it while you (OP) are living at home is the hard part. If she is cruising for a fight there is little you can do to satisfy her but give her one. This is why she gets along so well with your sister. Your best bet is to save your pennies so you can move out and limit contact . This book helped me a lot. It's painful to accept that someone you lve can be a toxic influence in your life, I know, but only by accepting it can you find the right antidote for you.

u/subpoena_medina · 3 pointsr/MomForAMinute

The fact that you're trying to mend it makes all the difference and makes you a bigger person. You're awesome! And you are a good boy. I'm proud of you. You're doing great.

If you're a reader I recommend Toxic Parents by Susan Forward. Helped me a lot.

Sending love your way xx

u/iliikepie · 3 pointsr/simpleliving

Sure! Two books really helped me. One is Toxic Parents. It may not apply to your life though. My parents weren't alcoholics or physically abusive, but there was emotional abuse and emotional neglect. That book really helped me to be able to work through a lot of things from my childhood that I just couldn't let go of and would constantly think about.

The Brain That Changes Itself is a book that isn't really a self-help type book. But for me, it really inspired me. It showed me that I do have the power to change. Even to change things that I thought were impossible.

u/boundfortrees · 3 pointsr/SRSMen

Toxic Parents by Susan Forward

if you don't have the funds for therapy right now, this can help. you might even be able to find it at a used bookstore or the library.

u/BogusProfiterole · 3 pointsr/AvPD

This is a quick "screen" from the best book I've ever found on this subject;

"Are you the child of toxic parents?

When you were a child...

Did your parents tell you you were bad or worthless?
Did your parents use physical pain to discipline you?
Did you have to take care of your parents because of their problems?
Were you often frightened of your parents?
Did your parents do anything to you that had to be kept secret?

Now that you a€™re an adult...

Do your parents still treat you as if you were a child?
Do you have intense emotional or physical reactions after spending time with your parents?
Do your parents control you with threats or guilt? Do they manipulate you with money?
Do you feel that no matter what you do, it'€™s never good enough for your parents?"

Any of these things are toxic and abusive, and have a major influence on your sense of self-worth.

u/abortiondrone · 3 pointsr/raisedbynarcissists

It's so absurd and if you aren't in therapy people just say you're not trying hard enough or don't really want to get better, like being a victim, etc. Fuck 'em. They have no idea what's going on or what it's like.


I love therapy books now, haha. I hated the idea of self help but these aren't selling anything, they're fairly clinical approaches and written by actual health professionals, not gurus or 'personalities.'


Toxic Parents by Dr. Susan Forward


Healing the Shame That Binds You by John Bradshaw


Healing the Incest Wound by Christine B. Courtois This one is pretty good but the language focuses heavily on father/daughter incest which is limiting, unfortunately.


The Tao of Fully Feeling by Pete Walker Don't let the full title mislead you, it's absolutely not about forgiving your parents, it's about learning to accept the shitty feelings that linger even after treatment.


Complex PTSD: From Surviving to Thriving by Pete Walker A life changing book, really. I'm particularly fond of Pete Walker because he is a therapist AND an abuse survivor himself so he's not just talking from the ivory tower, he's been through it and the compassion and empathy he has for other survivors is evident in his writing.

u/rbaltimore · 3 pointsr/relationships

I'd like to recommend a book called Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life. It's an amazing book that a lot of people I know have read. It's really a fantastic book. You're not alone, I promise.

u/Borsao66 · 3 pointsr/asktrp
u/SillySillyGirl · 3 pointsr/asktransgender

I can highly recommend the book Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life . I had already cut mine from my life but it helped me understand i had too and not to feel guilty. They are used ones for 1 cent :)

u/PineTron · 3 pointsr/JordanPeterson

Keep on grinding. Read, write, think. It is going to take you years before you reach a level where you won't be a single mistake away from hell.

I highly recommend this book if you were a victim of domestic abuse:

u/blackbird842 · 3 pointsr/raisedbynarcissists

Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life by Dr. Susan Forward. I haven't read it yet but every review I've seen has said it's life changing and the excerpts I've seen so far have all been spot on.

u/NotSuzyHomemaker · 3 pointsr/Random_Acts_Of_Amazon

Congrats on all the good stuff going on and good for you!

My week via amazon .... would have to be a combination of this and this. Hey, I see the connection there =P

u/Pelirrojita · 3 pointsr/TwoXChromosomes

I'm sorry that you are in this situation. It is not your fault.

When I went to therapy, it was for a combination of depression/anxiety/gender dysphoria, but you'd be surprised how much of it comes back to family, and not in a bullshit Freudian way. So while it wasn't about abuse per se, my therapist and I ended up talking about my family every single time.

I'd say it helped. Not in that it changed them (how could it?), but that it helped me see why my parents were the way they were. It helped me understand them, and that helped me forgive them and forge a better relationship with them. (Moving out also helped a shit ton, I can't lie.)

I also recommend the book Toxic Parents by Susan Forward. It gets thrown around on Reddit a lot, and that's where I learned about it, not in therapy, but it is worth the read for a lot of people.

u/LawGrl22 · 3 pointsr/raisedbynarcissists

Have you read this book?

u/muinamir · 3 pointsr/hoarding

I can relate to a lot of this. I grew up in a toxic household that gave VERY mixed signals on cleaning and organizing. Your paralysis in cleaning up and completing tasks on time is quite likely due to being neurally wired that way by a fearful and fraught upbringing. It takes directed effort to undo it (often via a trauma-aware therapist) and sometimes also meds.

I dunno if you've read anything about c-PTSD, but if you don't have the means to regularly see a therapist right now, it might help to read up on trauma and its long-term effects. Pete Walker has some good articles on his site. The book Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life is also very insightful. And have you seen anyone about your depression? For real, antidepressants helped me a LOT with general motivation.

For learning to stay on task, I found ADD-friendly Ways to Organize Your Life to be super helpful. I've never been diagnosed with ADHD; it was just a really good starting point for someone like me. FlyLady is a very gentle, positive site for learning about how to tidy up, so check that out.

Also, I promise not all Millennials are Konmari minimalists who will judge you forever for having stuff. I've seen all levels of stuff in the homes of people my age or younger. Friends were on the whole way more chill (maybe too chill) than I expected about the condition of my apartment over the years.

u/Ebomb1 · 3 pointsr/ftm

Are you living independently? What is your relationship with your mother now? What I'm seeing is that you're frightened and scared, and would transition if you felt safe. And what you think would make it safe is if your mother died. That's pretty heavy. Abuse puts your life in a hole and it's hard to climb out when the only option you feel you have is waiting for a person to die.

I think finding freedom from the control your mother had over your past transition decisions would be a practical place to start. Although it's pretty old, Susan Forward's Toxic Parents is still a relevant and accessible book.

u/Galphanore · 2 pointsr/atheism

I understand that. She's using her tantrums as a way to control you by guilting you into not disagreeing with her too openly by the subtle threat of making everyone miserable. I suggest you read this book. In the meantime, what email provider do you use? I'm sure we can set up a "politics" filter for you :D

edit : spelling

u/jojotoughasnails · 2 pointsr/LifeAfterNarcissism

Sorry, I realized what an idiot I was since you specifically mentioned your mother on mother's day.

But I guess if you had issues with your father too it's relevant. Your father may have just been abusive..not narcissistic. Although, my counselor had me view it as a scale. We all fit on the scale of narcissism, some are just at the more extreme end. Your father may have been in the middle area.

I've heard this is more of an all-purpose book to help. Again, I haven't read it. The first book I mentioned has done all I need. It hit the nail on the head and I haven't felt the need to continuously explore other books.

u/KafkaOnTheTrial · 2 pointsr/suggestmeabook

Toxic Parents and Emotional Blackmail: When the People in Your Life Use Fear, Obligation, and Guilt to Manipulate You. This kind of behavior usually doesn't start when a person is in their late 20s. The first book gives great insight on this. The second book gives clues on how to recognize when people are trying to manipulate you in a different ways and gives a lot of non-confrontational response strategies, it's a great book to read in general and I always recommend it to my friends.

u/AskEmily · 2 pointsr/ihaveissues

Parent-child love can often involve loving each other, but not liking each other. It's what happens when you know someone so deeply.

How do you think your parents will react if you decide to stay in Australia? You should be prepared to answer some tough questions about how you intend to support yourself.

Toxic Parents

Emotional Blackmail

u/purplecupcakedog · 2 pointsr/raisedbynarcissists

Omg what a horrible experience. reading this makes me feel like I wish i could have been there for you. I am so glad your roommate came through for you. I think it is a law here too in my state that suicidal people have to be taken in or 51/50'd. I think it is in this Susan Forward book about Toxic Parents the suggestion to send her a certified letter that you don't want any contact with her and then you can show a copy of the letter to police or private investigators or whoever else she sends after you. Definitely send her the bill for the emergency room. What a horrible mother. I am so broken hearted for all of us that have to go through this. My mother would have done the same thing.

u/davidstuart · 2 pointsr/AskReddit

You need to read "Toxic Parents, Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life". It will be the best 11 bucks you've ever spent.

u/UnclePaul50 · 2 pointsr/relationships

The mother is deeply insecure. She's threatened by her loved ones interacting with anyone else on a deep emotional level, so she tries to disrupt those relationships. Controlling people is the only way she knows to deal with her own insecurities.

Honestly, there's not much you can do about the mom directly. She's lived her whole life this way, and if her husband can't even negotiate a way to see his own sister, you, as an outsider, are not going to have any luck convincing her to accept you as her daughter's partner.

What frequently happens in these situations is that the child, finally realizing that she needs to live her own life, will cut off contact with the controlling parent for a period of time. Without severing the contact, it's too easy to fall back into old patterns. Sometimes this lasts 6 months. Sometimes it lasts 10 years. It all depends on the people and the relationships.

From your description, my guess is that your fiancee is not ready to take that step. But the ball is really in her court. She has to decide if she's going to live for herself or for her mother.

The only thing you might be able to do is buy her a book on the subject to get her thinking. Toxic Parents is frequently recommended, though I haven't read it myself. Given your fiancee's time constraints, consider getting the audio version so she can listen on her way to school/work. But talk to her about it first. It's not the kind of gift you want to spring on someone, because then it looks like you are the one being controlling.

u/DrTxn · 2 pointsr/exmormon

Book suggestion?

u/bhuddimaan · 2 pointsr/ABCDesis

You need to find and read this book, so that you can distinguish between what is discipline to you and what is overdoing it.

You need to learn to earn living to gain some independence

u/kochichka · 2 pointsr/relationships

Don't listen to people who tell you to keep contact with her, she is toxic to your life. My mother was not as bad as yours but still not very good mother and best thing that happened to me was that I moved across the ocean and I had chance to see her only 7 times in last 25 years.

You should read toxic parents by susan forward

u/Queen_E · 2 pointsr/AskWomen

I don't know that I'm navigating life all that well, but some little things have helped and why not share with the class? I think I have underlying mental health issues (depression, anxiety) worsened by trauma (rape, attempted rape which morphed into PTSD, I think) and a narcissistic dad.

  • Books! I read so much about this stuff. I actually find therapists really terrible, because I can tell I'm more well-versed than them. Which sounds snotty, but I think I've had bad luck and, like, what am I paying you for if I can tell you're
    Here are a few helpful ones:
    Sexual healing, literally
    PTSD and trauma:
    Shitty men:
    Shitty parents:
    A Buddhist reminder that to live is to suffer:
    Brene Brown, duh:
    (All the eating disorder books I read have been useless, and I am probably depressed and I'm certainly anxious but the literature on that never quite fits.)

  • Learning to stand up for myself has been huge, but lately it has really kicked into high gear and it has involved lots of screaming. I'm really nice and polite and if I get ignored too much when I need to not be ignored, I melt down and scream. Usually the object of my screaming deserves it 100%, but I'm hoping this is just a phase because it wears me out and I feel like I'll get put in an institution one day, even though the episode never lasts more than a couple hours. I got stalked and cornered in a parking lot once, and men who come too close and don't listen to my polite, repeated requests to back off, well, they get an earful. I've had a lifetime of feeling unheard and abused, so I don't feel a ton of shame about it. I'm trying to find other productive ways, but, man, this world sucks and sometimes screaming feels like the most rational thing. (To be clear, I do this, like, once every three months max!)

  • I wrote a letter to my dad once, telling him I hated all the shitty things he did to me and I cut him out of my life. Probably the best decision of my life. I did it thinking I just needed a little break, but almost eight years later, it feels pretty permanent and like it's given me the space I need to truly heal. Cut off your toxic relationships if you can!

  • Venting helps immensely, whether with my friends, my mom, my journal or a therapist. I told a therapist that the main reason I found her helpful was because she was a neutral third party who had to listen to me and she got really offended. But it's true! Most of my therapists have not been able to be much more than a sounding board. I am open-minded, but their ideas were either useless or offensive. The ideas I found in books were so much more helpful (like the writing my dad a letter thing was right out of the Toxic Parents playbook! No therapist ever suggested any of that!)

  • Weed is the only thing that truly helps me come down when I'm majorly triggered or anxious (ie when I have a screamy day), but Ativan isn't bad either.

  • For anxiety, I do better if I've had 7 hours of sleep, no caffeine and as little sugar as possible. I always feel best if I hike, bike, run, elliptical, lift weights and swim. Being worn out keeps the anxiety at bay and I sleep better.

  • I watch a lot of TV and spend a lot of time on the internet. It's a distraction and I don't find it terribly healthy or productive, and I'd usually rather be doing something else. But I get really anxious if I'm alone with my thoughts and it helps.

  • I still haven't figured out if I'm an introvert or extravert and maybe it's dumb to care about, but if I'm around chill people, I tend to do much better. I read and write a lot and am shy and introspective, and I used to prefer being alone, which I guess would make me an introvert. But I've been very PTSDy lately, and having friends and family around me is a good distraction, I feel much safer and I seem fine enough that no one ever seems to comprehend how I could end up in a psych ward out of the blue one day. The thing is hanging out with friends requires money and I don't have a job because of my PTSD, so I feel myself sliding downhill. I wish I had money just so I could cook for my friends all the time or go out to dinner and drinks regularly. I get anxious about being a fucking mooch all the time :/

    Okay, that's prob good, right?
u/exfiltration · 2 pointsr/AmItheAsshole

People who behave that way do so because they are never held accountable.
My father-in-law's last words to my wife after making us need to get both of our kids, (one of which was a newborn at the time, the other with special needs) tested for heavy metal exposure by vaporizing lead paint with a heat gun in the room next door to the newborn, while using no safety precautions we're: "I'm not sorry, piss off." We haven't spoken to him in two years. In the past relatively serious things were always met with "Well, I think we both did something wrong here, let's just forget about it."

If you haven't yet, I would recommend you visit /r/raisedbynarcissists and /r/justnomil. There are a fair share of shitposts, but also ones that might give you some insight into things.

I also recommend this book, if you haven't already read it. Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life

u/dub_beezy · 2 pointsr/JUSTNOMIL

My psychiatrist recommended this book for my boundary issues with my parents, it’s really good:

u/vizonym · 2 pointsr/AmItheAsshole

YTA - And you are using money as a way to push wayyyy too far into your adult child’s lives. Surely you realize that giving your children properties that are more or less valuable based on whether they want kids or not has a very high likelihood of tearing your family apart. Read this book- specifically the chapter on controlling parents. Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life
It might save your relationship with your kids and prevent them from fighting with each other as well.

u/cycle4life · 2 pointsr/AdultChildren

First of all sorry to hear about your childhood. I wasn't in a alcoholics family, but I was in a broken family so I do understand where you are coming from.

Being brought up in a unstable/chaotic family will surely have its scars and as kids we will blame ourself for whats going on in the family. My defence mechanism was being a rebel. When I was at school I was loyal to my friends a lot, not so much to others who 'normally' should be respected such as my mom or teachers. Also, I realise this because my dad pointed it out but, when I was in secondary school I was always out with my friends at internet cafes and was always home late. The reason was because it was my escape from the toxic environment in the house.

But right now I'm more the Lost Child. I'm not very social and most of the time I like being alone. I suggest you read this and this. It doesn't explore everything but its a good starter.

Recently some events did remind myself about my childhood, and started to read Toxic Parents by Susan Forward again, and if you haven't read it yet i'd highly recommend you read it. It's my third time reading it and every time I realise something in me, or something about my friends.

u/iphigenia140 · 2 pointsr/actuallesbians

Hey, while my experience isn't too similar, I do come from overbearing parents who still treat me as an inadequate child; I'm 23 and have now found my life partner, but still in the closet.

Your mother is abusive, and I am so sorry you were treated this way. It's also not surprising that you love her and feel heartbroken over this. I've started reading Susan Forward's book Toxic Parents and it's been immensely helpful understanding my dynamic with parents. I've talked to other people who grew up with manipulative/abusive parents and they said this book changed their life, helped them start the path of recovery. Maybe it can help you too. I myself am excited to finish this book.

Also, your experience of being abandoned by your parent then the parent trying to claw back into your life to take your child away from you-- reminded me of this article.

I hope either of these resources give you some help/solace. Don't give up on yourself; what your mother did was horrible-- but you aren't alone. Lots of love to you.

u/sparkie_t · 2 pointsr/TwoXChromosomes

You might like to think about what to do in the long run - this is a good place to start

u/mitchrodee · 1 pointr/depression

This book is not to help you deal with your current situation, but may be of help in the future when you're dealing with the emotional baggage you and you siblings will carry with you as you become adults. Part of being a parent is putting your childrens' needs before your own wants and desires. While they aren't completely neglectful, they aren't exactly meeting your needs.

u/princess_robot11 · 1 pointr/DecidingToBeBetter

Here are some books that I have read and have found to be helpful. Check to see if your library has them.

Toxic Parents

Emotional Blackmail

Running on Empty

u/EverVigilant · 1 pointr/casualiama

Hmm, but if you have emotional problems, you still might pick up and read this book, for shits and grins.

u/ANewAccountCreated · 1 pointr/AskReddit

Yep, Toxic Parents for everyone.

u/TongueDepresser · 1 pointr/depression

You might want to read this book:

Also, have you talked with your school's guidance counselor? You are badly in need of therapy.

Your friend Ari is amazing. You are very lucky to have such a great friend. Though please, please, please realize a few things.

  • Ari is a person, too. She has her own limits. I realize the depression has you stuck in your head, but please don't push her past her limits.
  • Most girls do NOT ever want to be compared to anyone's mom. I know you just meant it as a joke, but most girls find it deeply insulting. She just wants to be your friend. She never wants to "mother" you.
  • New York is cold this time of year. And it's only getting colder. You should stay in Florida for the next 6 months.
  • Do you ever ask Ari how she's doing? Look out for her interests, too. Friendship is a two-way relationship. Make sure you're giving back to the relationship somehow.

    Anyway, yeah, you need to find a therapist and start talking about your problems to a professional. I would go to your school's guidance counselor first since it sounds like your mother is the source of a lot of your problems.

    Good luck.

    PS: Punctuation is your friend... ;)
u/new_to_cincy · 1 pointr/AdviceAnimals

Toxic Parents. I am moving out of the country in 3 weeks, it's horrible to think about what my Dad might say. This is my bible for the moment.

u/Bionicbuk · 1 pointr/Marriage

Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life

u/erica1983 · 1 pointr/insaneparents
u/shadow1910 · 1 pointr/NoFap

First of you are doing great! Congrats and pat your self on the back you got this far and is on the journey of self-improvement instead of feeling sorry for your self.

I think you might've been using porn as coping mechanism for an underlying issue you may have.

"A coping mechanism is a method of dealing with stress and uncertainty in life. No matter who you are, you no doubt have worked through many stressful situations effectively. However, coping mechanisms can be healthy or unhealthy. Some unhealthy ways of coping may appear to resolve initial feelings of stress but can lead to problems down the road." (

One example, I used to go poming whenever I didn't want to do something right way, especially work (working from home on the computer on my own time), it was an quick way to self satisfy and run away from the problem. It was clear to me because it became a clear pattern. In your case, it is not that clear what u may be using poming to cope with in your life that is not making your happy. There may be a much deeper inner issue to this and your feeling of guilty is the surface to that. I would suggest seeing a good counselor/psychologist or at at least getting some self-help books.

Have learned a great deal this year, mostly by living on the edge of work/relationships/family trying extreme things and having things explode on my face. But I am glad I am going through these experiences, they might leave some scars but they are also leaving some wisdom behind with them.

This book helped me see my inner issue:

This youtube video from Ross Jeffries helps me focus on my self-improvement journey,

u/stormwaterwitch · 1 pointr/raisedbynarcissists
u/Lurker_IV · 1 pointr/MensRights

Another book I have hear is good at explaining the situation you are in is TOXIC PARENTS. If you and your wife read it it may help you to see the situation more clearly.

There are dozens of websites as well giving suggestions for toxic parent syndrome.

u/Mycel · 1 pointr/raisedbynarcissists

I had that happen as well, though I didn't realize it as much at the time.

First, since you asked, some books:

Will I Ever Be Good Enough?

Toxic Parents

Why Does He Do That?(still applicable if you change genders)

If you're able to move away, you should. You need to get as much distance as you can to build your own life and personality. I think I took five years before I started becoming the person I am now, and I'm still a ways to go in building my self-esteem.

If you can't move, like u/LuluThePanda said, you should still start doing daily affirmation habits. Little steps matter, even as little as saying "why yes, I do look pretty awesome today." You need to start "faking it until you make it" - it won't come naturally at first, but the more you do it, the better it will feel, and the more it will feel like it's really you.

Also, you may want to stop telling your mother about successes you have. It's your call, but I found that my mother didn't actually have any interest in my doing well, more that I could act as her council when called on. That and she doesn't understand what success means in my field. I stopped talking about any luck I had/goals I reached, and it helped me stay calm more often.

Good luck, and stay strong! You're doing great!

edit: formatting

u/ilovecloudsandbears · 1 pointr/raisedbynarcissists

I agree with rapunzel1111 - record if you can, and get used to keeping detailed notes regarding who said what. I have been to several counselors who didn't believe in narcissistic personality disorders (NPD) and proceeded to blame me for the issues in my relationship with Nrents. If you have the ability to select a counselor you want, look for ones that have experience with N-personalities, N-related disorders, or even do an initial meet-and-greet to discover if they have ever counseled anyone else who was victimized by a narcissist (this will also indicate whether or not they believe NPDs exist). Some counselors who are far away are open to Skype or phone sessions.

It's important to recognize that many health professionals don't want to weigh in too early, and many N victims can present issues of their own which may or may not be the same as the N. It's also the difference (at least in the US) between some counselors and actual mental health professionals - professionals (especially those employed by the government) can only make decisions based on behavior they have actually witnessed. We have gone through this with a family member who will act normal when a professional is present.

Anger is a natural reaction to many situations, so start by acknowledging it and allowing yourself to be angry (essentially self-validation). Say, "I'm angry about x. It's ok for me to be angry about x." Be angry, but try to move it in a positive direction by determining why you're angry and what can be done to alter/fix/avoid the same trigger in the future. It's also natural to go through periods of anger as you remember abusive things/actions/situations and process through them.

It's possible to become what you hate, so I would encourage you to not allow anger to simmer or grow into rage. If you haven't already, try journaling as well to help clear your head and ensure you are moving towards healing.

These books are good starting points to help you work through how to best love and forgive yourself while separating from toxic and/or Nrents:

Emotional Blackmail: When the People in Your Life Use Fear, Obligation, and Guilt to Manipulate You

Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life

Children of the Self-Absorbed: A Grown-Up's Guide to Getting Over Narcissistic Parents

u/Brandchan · 1 pointr/raisedbynarcissists

Here are two things that helped me a lot:

  1. Coming to understand my Mother will never be the Mother I want her to be.

  2. Stopped giving a fuck. Really, not about everything but I used to be super paranoid about what people thought about me. I decided it wasn't worth my time and I should do what I want to do with my life.

    These are not easy things to come to, I fully understand that. As many people have said go see a therapist. The one I saw in college was a huge help to me at the time. I was able to come to these realizations, and start making changes. It took a few years to get where I wanted as I still lived with my parents but I feel in control of my life now.

    I'd also recomend checking out Toxic Parents. My therapist had recomended this book many times but I wasn't big on self-help books. But one day I bit the bullet and read it and it was an important experience for me.
u/strawberry1248 · 1 pointr/raisedbynarcissists

Maybe a book could help? Toxic Parents by Susan Forward

u/laylaisfishing · 1 pointr/raisedbynarcissists

I’m completely NC with my mother for the same reasons, check out this book Toxic Parents

u/notmydivision · 1 pointr/sex

Your girl has trauma points on several levels that should be addressed. I'm going to hit you with a library of reference material. Self-help books are not a replacement for therapy! That said, knowledge is power, and these are excellent resources.

  1. Family of origin issues: this is where shit begins. We learn our self-worth (or lack of it) here. Toxic Parents (Susan Forward) will give you, and her, the concepts and vocabulary to begin to understand and process the effects of a fucked up family and how to deal with it.

  2. Self-esteem issues: Stemming from above. Almost certainly what's behind the 'long, abusive relationship' with some guy who ended up cheating on her. People who stay in abusive relationships (physical, emotional or a cocktail of both) do so as a direct result of issues with self-esteem. Ten Days to Self-Esteem (David Burns) and The Self-Esteem Workbook (Glenn Schiraldi) both give background and practical exercises to help understand the concepts and make progress toward repair. You should both work through this!

  3. Post-Traumatic Stress Issues: Like I said above, you've both been through trauma here. CLEARLY, her trauma is on a completely different level from yours, but you're exhibiting signs of a variation of PTSD yourself. Many people (myself included up until a couple of weeks ago, actually) think PTSD is reserved for war veterans. Not so much. The bible of PTSD is The Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Sourcebook (also Glenn Schiraldi). Buy this book. You can buy a Kindle edition and read it on your computer with a Kindle app if you want it right now and can't find it in a bookstore locally.

  4. Anxiety Issues: I'm betting she has them. Even if she by some miracle doesn't, you clearly do. For your back pocket -- Feeling Good and The Feeling Good Handbook (David Burns). Excellent Cognitive Behaviour Therapy manuals - you feel what you think, and CBT is brilliant for helping you understand and adjust faulty thought patterns.

    You need to be able to talk with her about this. Your relationship depends on it. In order for that to happen, she needs to feel safe talking to you about it. You should be able to express to her that you are upset by what happened to her, but no upset with her. You need to be very, very clear in your mind that that is true before you can be expected to convince her that that is true. Help her to understand that terrible things have happened to her - not just the rape, but all that shit going back to her abusive family of origin - that those things are not OK (that may sound ridiculously obvious, but someone that has grown up in that kind of toxic environment needs to hear that loud, clear and often), that they are not her fault, and that you love her and are prepared to support her when she needs you.

    She needs to talk to a professional. Do you have access to a women's counseling center or women's shelter where you are? If you PM me your location, I will be more than happy to help you look for resources. Given what you've explained about her background, chances are very, very good she's suppressing post-trauma reactions. Children of abusive situations learn that it's futile - maybe even counter-productive - to express physical or emotional pain. She needs to get with someone who is trained to hear below the surface and help her.

    Wow - I'm verbose.

    tl/dr: Giant, waiving red flags all over her background. Get her to a trained rape counselor, educate yourself on the probable issues, be there for her.
u/Khostumer · 1 pointr/narcissisticparents

Please don't do it. I had a similar upbringing and now that I'm an adult, I'm glad my attempts failed. I read this book lately and it was life-changing. Please read it or pm me for a digital copy of it. I didn't think anything would give me the skills to cope and stop the cycle of abuse.
Please get the help you need. You are in a position that most people haven't been in and your parents haven't taught you the skills (emotion and mental) to cope. It's not your fault! It's their shitty parenting and it's because they're shitty people. It's not your fault, you're still a young kid with a lot of great years left and you can have those years be parent free! You are perfect as you are.

u/PissFuckinDrunk · 1 pointr/relationship_advice

As someone who was also raised by an abusive parent, I've tried to get to a point where I could 'forgive' because I believed that forgiving them would suddenly alleviate my pain, and because everyone told me that I "needed to forgive and get past it". Like some cathartic realization would overtake me and all my pain would go away with "the power of forgiveness". Then one day I read the book Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life and re framed my idea of forgiveness.

In the book, the author explains that forgiveness can be a trap. Your pain and suffering was real, just like mine, and what was done to you by them was real. Forgiving alleviates your toxic parents of any responsibility, and does nothing to acknowledge all your pain. I would imagine that your ambivalence toward forgiveness is because you don't WANT to just let them off the hook. They hurt you, deeply. But you 'feel' like if you just forgave them everything would be OK, right? But it won't. Forgiveness really only benefits the person who COMMITTED the wrongs, not received them.

As for the guilt, this was something I battled as well. I'll be frank, you had toxic parents. More than likely, they instilled in you all sorts of negative impressions on life. I see that someone recommended you hit up /r/raisedbynarcissists, I second that. There is a wealth of information there to help you understand what was done to you.

Lastly, I recommend therapy. If even just to explain your feelings and have someone tell you its going to be OK.

You don't have to forgive. In fact, you can harbor bitter resentment and anger towards your parents for the rest of their life, and you will be completely justified in it. Me, I am quite on the way to cutting complete contact from my abusive parent. When I tell people that I hate her and will never speak to her again, not even if she is dying, people look at me aghast. They don't understand, so they try to tell you that forgiveness is the cure, and you can't go through your life never speaking to your parents. To that I say, bullshit. Those who weren't raised by abusive parents simply cannot understand what it's like, as a child, to be abused by the ONE set of people who are supposed to love you unconditionally. And as a Psychology major, I can tell you that the amount of psychological damage done in that environment is staggering.

Well I've rambled quite a bit. My advice, don't forgive because you feel you 'should'. Do what you need to in order to come to grips with your abuse. If that means treating them as if they don't exist, realize that you are justified in that course of action. Don't push your horrendously toxic childhood into the dark because you feel like you 'should'.

*edit: accidentally a word

u/stunnashades · 1 pointr/IAmA

Toxic Parents is great! Also, many libraries that offer ebooks have this title available.

u/FinallyForMe · 1 pointr/raisedbynarcissists

GC - Golden Child - the favorite,"faired haired child", etc. Gets rewarded and praised and spoiled, usually to punish the SG. Also most likely to be an enabler for the abuser.

SG - Scapegoat. Everything is blamed on them, they're the focus of abuse by the whole family. They can't do anything right, are treated like criminals, and are often excluded from the family as punishment.

FLEAS - narcissist-like behavior, usually learned from years of living with a narcissist.

I don't recall an official list of acronyms, but those 3 are the big ones you'll run into here - there's a couple more, like Lost Child, which are often the youngest child who's simply ignored in the family. You might also see simple ones, like "Ndad", which just means Narcissist Dad, or Emom, which is "Enabler Mom".

This group uses the same terminology from many of the support groups that focus on abuse, dysfunction, and enabling, so you can dive into further reading by focusing on those issues, even if the book or material is approaching it from an addiction point of view, like the ACA groups and material (Adult Children Of Addicts/Alcoholics.)

The book I like to recommend is this one:


And there are many, many, many more out there! I think you'll have the same experience most of us do the first time we read books like that - "I'm not alone! It's not me that's crazy - it's THEM!" :)

u/stoopidquestions · 1 pointr/AskReddit

Is your mom bi-polar/borderline? Have a hug and if you can, get a copy of Toxic Parents. Also; get married your way; it's your day, do what you want, if it's at the courthouse or elope to Vegas, whatever will make you happy. Being married is about the day-to-day not the wedding anyways. In less than a year, nobody cares about the wedding except the bride anyways (I see people with their wedding pics as their facebook pic years after they got married and find it sad because you know that was the highlight of their life).

u/JZA1 · 1 pointr/AsianParentStories

You might find this helpful: Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life

u/Aleriya · 1 pointr/IAmA

I really recommend this book on Toxic Parents:

You can usually find it at the local library, too.

u/Gabbitty · 1 pointr/Buddhism

People are quick to recommend therapy on Reddit- probably because it can be so helpful- but it's also difficult to access for most people. You could start with something like this:
Susan Forward is great.