Save the Children

 

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If there is one thing which will often scupper an attempt to escape our clutches, it is the existence of children. On the one hand the existence of children created by you and our kind often results in you continuing to endure the relationship for the sake of the children rather than separate. On the other hand, even if you do decide that it is better to separate than stay with our kind, you are rarely able to truly escape because of the shared connection that exists because of the children. Even though you wish to escape the roller coaster existence of being with our kind, as an empathic person you behave fairly and recognise that the children should see their other parent and thus you either make provision or allow for contact to continue between our kind and the children which in turn means that there must inevitably remain contact between you and us. You may however take the draconian step of deciding that it is in the best interests of the children to have no contact with the narcissistic (although usually you only realise the other parent is abusive rather than narcissistic at this juncture) parent and cut all contact off. This then results in our kind turning to formal means through the courts to establish contact with the child or children again.

Your concerns in respect of the involvement of our kind in the raising of children cover numerous factors.

  1. You are concerned that our behaviour will affect the children so that they in turn become narcissists;
  2. You are worried that our behaviour leads to the children witnessing abusive behaviour towards you which will upset the children;
  3. You are concerned that our behaviour will lead to the children not receiving a stable and nurturing upbringing;
  4. You are worried that the children will be used as pawns between you and us and adversely influence so they are turned against you;
  5. You are concerned by our failing to provide emotional and financial support which will in turn impact on the children; and
  6. You are worried that our behaviours will effectively spoil what should be happy moments in childhood.

These, along with others, are legitimate concerns. It becomes especially difficult for you when you find that you face a battle between doing what is right for a child even though this may clash with what they want. They want to spend time with us but you see such time as toxic and having an influence on the child (who as a child cannot see or comprehend what is happening) which is at best unhelpful and at worst downright damaging. How do you deal with a situation where you need to do what is right and best for a child, even though they will not see this at the time? First of all, what must you understand about our attitude towards children and parenting?

  1. Children are regarded as appliances by us. There is no distinction made for the fact that they are children nor that we are their parent. We see children as appliances and devices which are extension of ourselves and therefore there to do our bidding. You should never be under any illusion that a narcissistic parent loves the child. Do not be fooled into thinking that any benign act exhibited by our kind is a manifestation of love towards a child. It is not;
  2. This pervading mind set means that children will be used in order to gather fuel. This will be done directly by obtaining fuel from them. Initially this will manifest as wanting to spoil them when we have time with them so that their positive responses to this will provide us with positive fuel. We will upset, anger and frustrate children in addition to draw negative fuel as and when it is deemed appropriate. This is not done because the positive fuel has become stale (as is the case when devaluation occurs in the context of an intimate partner primary source) but is an adjunct of wanting to achieve some other aim. The two most popular aims are control and triangulation. We will provoke a negative fuel response from children in order to exert control over them, for instance, taking a toy away or forbidding them to do something that they enjoy such as watching a certain television programme or being allowed some sweets. This reinforces our control. A child is no different from any other appliance and must be subjected to our control. This control is not exerted for the benefit of the child, for instance, stopping the child from eating sweets every day because it is unhealthy, but is only done so we can establish control. In terms of triangulation, the negative emotional response will be achieved for the purposes of triangulating you. For instance, we may suggest to the child that mummy does not love the child so it becomes upset. We only care about the reaction, not the well-being of the child. We may say that the child cannot do something on your instruction, in order to both upset the child and thus gain negative fuel and at the same time smear you through this triangulation. Thus, when negative fuel is sought from a child it arises in conjunction with the desire to control and/or to triangulate.
  3. The traits and achievements of the child are up for grabs in the same way that we steal and acquire traits from adults in order to furnish our construct and make ourselves look even more appealing. Our sense of entitlement is such that the child has only won the race, come top of the class, swum that distance, secured a place on a vacation scheme as a consequence of our brilliance. We will remind you, the child and third parties that this is the case. Repeatedly.
  4. We will smear and brief against you at every available opportunity. Irrespective of the reasons why the relationship between you and us ended, we will not rise above the desire for smearing for the sake of the children. If there is an opportunity to take a pot shot at you, it will be taken. The needs of the children do not ever come before our needs. Thus if they are upset by what we say about you, we receive fuel and do not care how it affects them. If they begin to dislike you because we suggest you are too strict, we will not counter that but rather we will cultivate this position to our advantage.
  5. Just like you, children can cause criticism to us. Rather than soak it up as a mature, well-adjusted parent would, we will lash out when there is a perceived or actual criticism of us delivered by the words and/or actions of the child. This will as ever result in the ignition of fury and the manifestation of heated fury or cold fury. We will sulk with a child, turn away from them if they want support and/or shout at them. The fact they are a child is meaningless to us. The fact we as a parent owe obligations to them to behave in a mature and responsible fashion to them does not matter because our needs come first.
  6. We have no sense of responsibility or obligation to children. A lesser narcissist will see no need to maintain maintenance payments and will be content not to see work. A greater may well make such payments, not because he cares about the children but it is done to show to everybody else how generous he is and also to make you look bad if your financial contributions are not as substantial. The payment or otherwise of financial support will be used as a carrot and stick against you throughout the duration of childhood. We will only become involved in the lives of the children if we regard there as being some kind of benefit to us. Their emotional needs, education, safety etc. are irrelevant to us. We will attend a school performance not to show support to the child so they feel happy, but to show to other parents that we apparently love and support the child, so we gain fuel and infuriate you. We regard obligations as beneath us, we have no sense of accountability, our sense of entitlement means we can do as we please, our lack of guilt or conscience means there is no mechanism casing us to adopt an alternative stance.
  7. Understand that children are pawns which will ALWAYS be used to our advantage. Whether it is to bind you to us during the golden period, to make us look good to others, to draw fuel, to exert control, to triangulate, to perpetuate abuse and so forth, our interactions with our children are governed by our needs. In the same way that our interactions with you as intimate partner, or our involvement with an inner circle friend, or our dealing with a stranger are all governed by our needs first, the same is applicable to children.
  8. Attempting to curtail our involvement with the children is seen as a criticism to us, irrespective of how morally and factually correct your action may be. That is irrelevant to us. We will use the court system for our purposes. We do not wish to spend time with our children for their sake, but instead it is for our sake. We may find it boring having them but if we know the fact they stay with us one night a week upsets and angers you, we will do it in order to draw this fuel from you and therefore we will use the court system to fight. It is not a fight for the benefit of the children. It is a fight for the maintenance of our needs – fuel, control, triangulation etc.

With this mind set of ours now apparent in our interactions with you and the children, how do you deal with us?

  1. Minimise the interaction you have with us. Establish a system for messages to be sent by e-mail or text. If this is deviated from by a telephone call, do not take the call but allow voice mail to pick up the call and then you can establish how best to respond thereafter and you will not provide fuel by being tricked into answering a call. If possible, prevent any face to face contact between you and us concerning the children. We draw the most fuel from seeing your emotional reactions face to face. Remove this (where practical) and you are denying us fuel. For instance, utilise the assistance of other family members or friends for the handover of the children until such an age as when they can use transport or walk between venues safely.
  2. Ensure all communications are to the point, business-like and contain no emotion. This again denies us fuel. Establish a five-minute rule so that you never immediately respond to our communications (when you are more likely to do so in an emotional fashion as we try to provoke you). If five minutes is too short, extend the time.
  3. By denying us fuel we will (initially) try to provoke you in different ways concerning arrangements and interaction with the children. Weather that storm and because we must obtain fuel we will have to seek it elsewhere. You are not a viable source so we will eventually look to obtain fuel from you less and less. You will also eventually notice that this manifests by us losing interest in the children. Remember, we are not interested in the children per se but how they as appliances can serve us.
  4. You will face an ongoing battle between your influence and our influence. This is deliberate as it is used to provoke you into confronting us about what we say about you, what we say to the children and what we do with them. We want you to engage. You must resist the need to do so. Remember, you will not make us change. We will not listen to you. We want to control you and draw fuel from you. We use the children to achieve this. Accordingly, if the children comment that we are making disparaging comments about you: –
  5. Do not confront us about the issue, it is futile;
  6. Do not seek to influence the view of the child by saying “Dad is a bad person” this will trouble the child and the response will be conveyed to us which will secure Thought Fuel for us and also provide us with further ammunition to use against you for your comment. Instead, move on to discussing something else instead and the child is likely to forget about the comment. If the child persists in wanting to discuss the matter, then explain that Dad does things differently to you and then move on. Provide reassurance and listen to the child but do not, however tempting it may be, do or say anything disparaging as this plays into our hands. Your role is to maintain a positive influence for your children as often as you are able. By doing this (and starving us of fuel so the interaction will lessen) your positive influence will progressively outweigh our negative influence. The more you expose your children to a positive influence and avoid walking into our traps and playing into our hands, you will tip the balance so that they will, through the effluxion of time and exposure to this positive influence flourish under it and make their own minds up.
  7. In a similar fashion to how you must deal with a smear campaign, do not tell the children what to think, but allow them to make up their own minds. This will be difficult at first and you will no doubt find yourself on the receiving end of hurtful and challenging behaviour. Keep in mind that this is our influence (not what the child really thinks) and that as you weather the storm, the effects of your positive influence will eventually manifest. As the children become older you can present them with independent evidence of behaviour (not just hearsay and say so) so they can evaluate this for themselves and make their own minds-up. Like third parties, children do not want to be involved in a conflict between two people and they do not want to be told what to do. Cater for this and you will minimise disruption and increase your positive influence.
  8. Your approach is one of ensuring the “light side” overcomes the “dark side”. This can only be achieved by repeated reinforcement of positive behaviour and influence. If you engage in behaviours similar to ours, you enter onto our home turf and you will not only encourage us to keep going with our behaviours but you will find there is a negative outcome for both you and the children.
  9. If our behaviour is serious in terms of impact on the children – for instance violence or neglect – involve the relevant authorities. You will not be able to cause us to recognise we have done anything wrong because we either do not recognise that we have or we will not admit it for the purposes of maintaining control.
  10. If you regard it as appropriate, save messages and e-mails which exhibit our behaviour and allow the child access to them when an adult. This is again the presentation of independent evidence when they are in a position to make their own minds up. You must not engage in a popularity contest or sling mud; you will lose as this is playing into our hands.
  11. If you find yourself having to engage with us through the court system, ensure those representing you are familiar with our kind. Rely on independent evidence as much as possible rather than “he said, she said”. Recognise that we are experts at duping people and our lawyers, your lawyers, psychologists, court officials and judges can just as easily be duped. If a hearing does not go your way, resist the urge to lash out at us – it is of course just fuel – and instead continue to adopt a positive approach towards your children. That must always be your focus. We want you to engage with us and we will use children and the court system to provoke you to do this. Fail to engage and you take away much of our power.

It is hard. A narcissistic parent is a fact. We will not go away so long as we are getting what we want or believe we can do so. Prevent us from getting what we want, demonstrate to us that we are unlikely to get what we want and we will turn our attention elsewhere. This will then allow your positive influence to have an even greater bearing on the children and undo any harmful effects from our toxic influence. You will face challenges but by trying to address our behaviour, cater for it and pander to it, you will not succeed in protecting your children. I have seen this first hand.

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109 thoughts on “Save the Children”

  1. My friend has managed to run away from her narc by recording the kid’s dad during ignited fury. He’ll never see the kids again and he’s got parental rights taken away and restraining order on him.

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      1. Yes.she did not tell a single soul of her plan. Noone. That’s why it’s worked. I found out and her mum once she was under police protection in refugees hotel.

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  2. And my parents are Catholics of a generation when being Catholic meant something. It meant my father not leaving my mother, no matter how many times the neighbors called the cops because they heard “a woman screaming”. The cops would come, under the impression that she was screaming because he beat her when really she was verbally abusing him at top volume. Cops once showed up to find her holding a knife to him (she was angry that he bought Christmas presents for his sister’s kids, his sister not having gotten anything for myself and my sisters, and my mother was angry at him for having spent money on his sister’s kids when she hadn’t spent likewise on us), and the cop said “Ma’am, at what point did you pick up the knife to defend yourself from your husband?” My father never hit her, not that day, not any other day.

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      1. I thought this was normal. I thought everybody’s mother screamed, waved knives, was fomenting at the mouth angry, hit people, etc. it was home, it was what I knew.

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      2. Me too Cara. Sad isn’t it? Talked to therapist about it today. I realized at about 5 that not everyone was like this. But still thought it was okay, different people have different behavior right? I thought good people don’t act like that, bad people act like that. Oh and it was okay to be both good and bad because My Father was good Dad/bad Dad.

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  3. Mr. Tudor,
    I was just able to skim this post quickly. However, does this work the same way as if they weren’t the Ns child and the woman had a child with another man?

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    1. In my situation, yes. She was 4 and he was Mr.Wonderful. They were ‘best friends’ . As she matured and discovered that the world was bigger than his orbit she wanted to spend time with her friends -without him… Then the mask slid, guilt first, small digs, then name calling and body shaming. “I did everything for you, I gave up MY time to make you happy… I’d do ANYTHING for you…”
      As soon as she was a legal adult I told her to RUN. I stayed because of her younger brother.. and have been through everything in this post. The boy is finally old enough to ‘see’ the games, join scouts? Wonder Dad became pack leader. Join a gym? Wonder Dad became “equipment acquisition manager”….and on and on.
      Trying to get out. It isn’t quick or easy.

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      1. Oh! And her even THINKING about a boyfriend? ” Boys only want ONE thing – I’m just trying to keep you SAFE.”. Gah, “real tv” has nothing on this kind of mess….*shakes head*

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  4. My husband was like that, if it wasn’t nailed down out went flying, yelling, if I wasn’t fast enough I became his punching bag. The last straw was when he pinned me to the couch knife to my throat and one in my side. To this day I don’t know how I survived that one, yet 6 months later he died, so I have no worries of him ever coming back. I made damn sure he burned.
    My son I am very thankful he is like me and not his father. We have had discussions of what it was like for both of us.

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  5. I get so angry and sad for all the children and adolescents (past and present)that have had to endure this abuse and trauma. This is why I do what I do.

    Too many have to be re-parented, go to endless sessions in therapy, are medicated, hospitalized, engage in self hate and self injury and some do not make it out alive. HG, I am glad you made it out alive. I hope you continue to thrive and know consistent and healthy self and other love (what ever that is). May we all find this.

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  6. Welcome to my nightmare. The only way I survived this far after my separation and divorce with my ex is by executing a crab’s sidways walk every step of the way. I have had many family members and friends who thought I was being too nice or didn’t get how or why I worked around and about all the crap he put me through. I knew before I understood, it was the only way to make it out and through holding onto my sanity. I had to lose my children for a brief time to him, I cannot even describe that pain, however by letting go, they returned to me on their own, realizing it was better and safer to stay with mom, had I forced it, my nightmare would still be in a hellish state, instead it’s tolerable with a few bad days here and there. The nightmare now is mostly due at the acceptence I have at least 4 to 5 more years of having to be on my “A” game, it breaks my heart to have to live this way. I broke from his prison, but I’m still chained to having to be on guard, prepared, keeping my defenses sharpened, though I am more free then any other time in my life, I ache to know what it would be like to have never been caged in the first place. HG this post is truly advice that works, it is detriment to stay on course showing your children the stark difference between light and dark, it takes great strength and dicipline to not fall into so many traps and play right into the narcissist’s games, but for your children it is the only hope they have, and healing they need.

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    1. Thank you CC and interesting to note how you established a way of dealing with the situation before you truly understood what it was you had become embroiled with.

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      1. I have always known I’m not the competitive type, if I remotely attempt I will lose, I just don’t have that “cut throat” gene in me. What I do have is tenacity, patience, the ability to swallow my pride. I have years of practice at turning my cheek, taking the higher road, and I can handle criticism a lot better than I imagined. I think I knew how to go about every move from escape to divorce to parenting plans to current day before I understood what I had become embroiled with, due to the fact I had been under his tactics for 14 years, absolutely my subconsciousness knew the consequences of every action, I had been living in survival mode for over a decade.

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    2. CC….is your real name Crusty Crab? Do you know SpongeBob?
      Seriously,
      Bravo to you for not sinking to his level. Your children are a part of him so to see that you are not bashing him to your children is excellent parenting. If one parent bashes another it confuses the child because they come from both parents. They may think, what if I am like the bad parent. This hurts their self esteem. Good job and hang in there!

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      1. Thank you, it has been one of the hardest things I have gone through, thinking about my dear ones, and what is best in the long run helps me stay the course! learned very quickly if I bashed him to my children, I would only prove him and everything he said about me right, the only way to show I was not who he painted me to be, was to remain, poised, tactful, patient, sensible, not crazy ,and not unstable.

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    1. RMG,
      My narc parents have caused a sibling rivalry since I was born. If not trying to get both kids on their side in an argument to comparing us to one another constantly to complaining we love the other parent more or we are acting like the other parent or we all 3 are conspiring against one of the parents it has been exhausting. Triangulating at its finest. We are an appliance that they want control over. So to have Greater Narc Sociopath Dad vs Lesser Victim Narcissist Mom I really had no hope and neither did my brother. Interesting though, he became mid range narc and I became empath with sociopathic tendencies and PTSD. I think of it as someone rolling dice and saying ooh I can’t wait to see what personality disorder we create!

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      1. I am sorry you had to grow up in such an environment. What does an em-path with sociopath tendencies look like on paper? Is it different then being codependent? BTW that is what CC stands for Convalescent Codependent. Though Crusty Crab did give me a chuckle!

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      2. CC,
        Don’t feel sorry. I have found myself as of late expressing things on this blog that nobody knows. I don’t want anyone to feel sorry for me. I probably will now stop telling things about myself as that is not my nature. This is why you see more comedic responses from me. Usually i like others to talk about themselves. I like to hear other peoples stories. That is why I state things above and have not tied any emotions to them. They happened, I dealt and moved forward.

        Sociopathic tendencies is being a sociopath but only when necessary. I have a full range of empathy but when I deem it necessary I can turn off all emotion or disassociate myself from being empathetic. I have the ability to use people to my advantage and walk away feeling nothing. I have a million acquaintances and nobody but 2 that I would call my friend. I take what I need and will exploit your weaknesses. I do have great control over whether or not I will take advantage of you. Let’s say I feel your pain but I might be the one creating it also. Or i need something from you and i will use you to get what i need. I can go from normal to predator. I often look you in the eyes and you may perceive it as cold or seductive. Some people would say I was a con artist. I have a criminal mind. I am a fast talker. I am well received by everyone but most people don’t know me. Few understand how I think. I can be on or off depending on what is needed. It’s like flipping a switch. I am a master at figuring out people’s emotional needs and using that to get what I want. I have much more control now over when and how I use my sociopathic gift. I now am mostly in a normal empathic state. Unless someone triggers me, then I will become predatory. I love a good mind game. I’m like a malignant cancer but I have not metastasized yet. It really is more dangerous than full blown sociopath because I have the ability to have a full range of emotion or no emotion at all. The best of both worlds. You may see narc traits there, but I am not a Narc as I do not need fuel. I may be more dangerous as I get what I want by not needing to be fed accolades. I exploit with no need to be praised, I really don’t care what you think of me. I don’t need your approval. If you try to hurt me, I shut it down. I have a tendency to want to win. I want to beat you especially if it is at your own game. I find it challenging to be in the ring with another sociopathic person. I have the tendency to abandon. I will state again that I am not anywhere near what I once was. In my late teens til early thirties I was alot worse. I have learned to dial back the sociopathic part. I attribute this to years of therapy and unconditional love from my husband and studying theology. I feel safe enough with my husband to not have to use sociopathic coping mechanism. He therefore is one of my 2 best friends.

        So yes, it is much more different from a codependent. I had a monster just like HG. I am dissecting it. I am almost done. They say that sociopathic tendencies or sociopathic people cannot change. I disagree. I wanted to change and I have and am still changing. It’s really a question of how bad do you want it? I have the pull of course to be sociopathic because it is what I know. But I know this is not healthy behavior. I believe as you gain more knowledge about why you do what you do and what shaped you then you choose to keep it or change. Oh btw, Mr. Tudor says he is sociopathic narcissist. So you will recognize the sociopathic part in him by what I said. I apologize HG for such a lengthy reply, or do I? Yes HG I had a cocktail. CC I hope that helps you understand sociopathic tendencies.

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      3. Anna Belle Black, I mean this in the most polite tone, as written word is void of that, I did not say I feel sorry for you, I said I am sorry this happened to you. Sorry is probably a poor choice of word, I feel great sorrow for those, not much unlike myself, who have suffered from the very hands that were meant to protect you. I am glad you have “moved on” I find wallowing and dismissing the very things that created our unhealthy paths, both useless to healing. As anything in life, balance is key. Your experience though you may be far removed from at this time (or not) by expressing or sharing can help other’s if you are at all interested. That might be another avenue to explore as you continue to dissect your monster. I would think such a task might nurture your empathetic nature you claim to have. Or perhaps you are way beyond any of these suggestions and I don’t have enough information, none the less what you have just written these are the thoughts that cross my mind reading your words.

        Yes sociopath is quite different then a codependent. I was curious at the words em-path and sociopath put together, as Sociopaths are described as not having empathy. Thank you for your detailed response, I found it fascinating indeed!

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  7. The Narc I knew for moment in my life. DID NOT HAVE KIDS. I told him this was the best thing he did for society was not to perpetuate his genes. It is just his sister and him and she can’t have kids. I think they have sex. I also included her when I wrote this to him.

    Same goes for you HG. I am sure your children would have been beautiful little replicas of you but let’s face it. Their mental health would be at risk. >

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  8. Anna Belle Black
    I do understand where you are coming extremely empathic yet something is lurking, I sense it’s presence. I chose to follow my empathic side thou. I use to dream of a monster when I was younger, scared the hell out of me.

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    1. RMG,
      Make friends with your monster then kill it off….lol my monster is currently being dissected. I really find the idea of some people conceptualizing to become a Narcissist like the parents or becoming empathetic in opposition to parents interesting. I have done both in different ways. Maybe why I’m ambidextrous?

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    1. Potentially you may well have RMG but I would need to know more about you and your relationship to say more, I suggest you read Chained, if you have not already done so.

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  9. My heart goes out to every single one of you that have children involved. I can’t even begin to understand how you can get through a divorce and still take care of your kids while dealing with a narcissist. I could barely get myself out.
    My ex was all to willing to take on the responsibility of being a step parent. I thought it was odd the way she spoke of my son in the beginning. She spoke of adopting him way to soon and wanting his last name to change to hers. I would have never done that. He has a wonderful father. I agree that she was going to think of him as an appliance. My son is mostly non verbal and she was going to use him by showing people how caring and loving she was by taking care of both of us. I can’t imagine how it would have been for us two years down the road. It is not easy to live with a special needs child 100% of the time and I don’t know how she would have been able to handle it. It is sad to think about her perspective because I believe she wanted to create a family unit that she never had. In her mind we were going to be a happy family. She only wanted her mother to love her and to have her family support her. She wanted unconditional love like the rest of us but was unable to see that I was willing to give it to her. She suffered mental abuse from her mother and physical from a boyfriend. I was always mad at her mother for how she treated her and now I know why she turned out the way she did.

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  10. Child free. Thank goodness. Fucking angry. You are a fuckingdamn appliance to Matrinarc. That makes me angry and sad because you were just a child too when you became lost. Thank goodness you took care of that anatomical part that would make you nothing more than a sperm donor and would subject your child to what you have written. Smh.

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  11. Anna Belle Black
    You made me think of a song my ex would play for me Monster by Skellet. I now see this as another one of his tells, yet I wrote it off in the beginning.
    Friends with it, something to ponder for a while.
    Interesting you bring up being ambidexrious, as to the fact I am to. Wonder if this is a factor of both empathic and narcissistic/ socopathic traits.

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    1. Hello RMG
      You just sent chills down my spine. My ex used to play and sing that same song to me all the time. She always talked about a monster and now I’m starting to understand that it was inside her. She also said she dreamed of death and a monster from a very young age and no one ever believed her. I wrote that off too like you and so many other things. I am finding that there are a lot of meanings in the songs that she used to listen to. Hope u have a good day🍎

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  12. Can I ask You something G? I’d ask You in private but… well…my son is a v.intelligent 9 year old. He’s never been treated as a golden child and there were always consequences for a misbehaviour breaking rules etc. He knows which rules apply where depending of situation or environment. He can recite them precisely. Yet He’ll break them when it suits him and he does that often. I’ve learn how to predict that behaviour so I am always sten steps ahead but He has very strong entitlement traces. ..very strong…to the point that I’m seeing him in the future breaking the law… HOW can I help him??? I’m begging You on my knees to help me…here or priv…. it’s getting gradually worse and he’s a little master of manipulation too so lies etc. are very common plus bribery of his brother for instance…. he is growing into a narcissist. ..a very strong one… his skills scares me as I do not want Him to suffer in the future as I did…or as You are dear G. ❤

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    1. By all means, you can ask in private but owing to my recent absence there is an excess of messages awaiting me and I have yet to tackle them as I have been addressing those on the blog first, but rest assured I shall get to them over the next few days. Still, you have asked here in any event Maddie.
      There is clearly something influencing his behaviour. The first step to tackling this is to identify the source of influence, can you do that?

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      1. Thank You for the reply. The problem is he has been that way since he started walking… Had him under diagnosis but professionals said hes mentally healthy…. why is he acting like he owns everything and every place? I can’t identify anything 🙁 I’m either too stupid or he is just that way….

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      2. Yes I can’t identify the source of influence. ..I’m starting thinking… as a co-dependant empath maybe it’s my fault?! 🙁 as I get the feeling he’s been like that since he was a toddler. .. how to reverse it? How to teach him dear G? What will help…maybe I have created him that way as he’s my first born… where privately we can chat? Messenger? Twitter? Email? What dp u currently use dear G.?

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      3. HG! Our 11 yr old is the same way. I see the traits so strong in him and his source is his narc mom with most traits of a lesser….but she took us to court and now even thought they don’t want to go, she gets them every other weekend. About the time we start getting his attitude,self entitlement, and anger somewhat under control he has to go back?! How can we help if we can’t eliminate the source? She makes him and his sister go for the control. He’s about to be 12 and she’s 9. They don’t even realize they are coming back acting like that family and the trait runs deep. They have our family with strong moral and Christian values that try to do what’s right and teach right from wrong and then they go there and it’s right the opposite because she plays Christian a couple Sunday’s a year but I know she believes in no higher power than herself regardless of what she portrays. She always cussing and having angry outburst unless her new husband is around and then the golden period switch flips on and she’s just wonderful…:( our family needs your help also!!!

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      4. Hello KD, as you will have read in the article since you cannot cut out the toxic influence in its entirety you need to
        1. Manage it so it is not as virulent, frequent or pervasive ; and
        2. Overcome its influence through the application of your positive influence in a greater and more sustained degree so that it arrests the toxic influence, diminishes it and allows the children to ultimately cut out the toxic influence as they understand what has happened when they are old enough to make a decision.
        There will be more articles to follow on the issue of narcissistic influence on children, so keep reading.

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  13. Truly awful reading some of your experiences & very sad .

    I thank my lucky stars we had no children together, though his greatest desire was to be a parent .
    Somewhere in the depths of my conscious mind, & as much as I thought we loved each other at the time, long before I knew what he is, I made the decision that to have give him a child would be the worst decision I’d ever make .

    This articles helped me understand why his need was so strong & why we constantly argued about it . Thank you HG . It’s confirmed that my decision will most likely be one of the best I’ll ever make afterall !.

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      1. Thanks HG .

        He’s getting too old to be a parent now.

        I feel rather smug knowing I denied him the thing that he most wanted.

        So Sad wanders off with an evil smile on her face…… 🙂

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  14. HG,
    You say not to badmouth the Narc. In my case my kids are 16 and 18. I finally left after 20 years of being manipulated. She has alienated both kids against me and is expert at playing the victim. She is also a marraige therapist who was (is) sleeping with her clients. I’m trying n it to badmouth her, but what about arming them with knowledge? Sending them links to posts like yours to help them understand her behavior. Is that considered badmouthing?

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    1. Hello WTI, given the ages of your children they are able to make their own decisions. Given she has alienated your children against you by labelling her or using pejorative terms will only result in them hearing the insult and missing the message. Therefore avoid doing that. Instead furnish them with the facts and the knowledge and preferably that from an independent source. Sending them the links (although do not bombard them) will allow them to read in their own time and eventually they will recognise how she behaves with what is described by me. It may take time but they will get there eventually, you need to allow them to make their minds up and not force the issue.

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    1. Please go to another specialist for the diagnosis of your son. You are his advocate and do not stop until you find an answer. Inlist HG, as you have to help guide you to find the professional help, you will need.

      You must never stick with one answer when it comes to medical situations.

      HG what do you recommend?

      I hope you get to the bottom of this soon Maddie.

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      1. If there is an indentifiable source that is having an adverse impact, isolate and remove that source. I agree that it would be beneficial to obtain the professional observations from medical propositions in order to identify what the diagnosis is, it may not be the start of developing a narcissistic personality but may be attributable to something else and therefore it would be sensible to determine/discount what those may be.

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  15. HG I have read Chained, enjoyed it, yet I see similarities before my encounter with ex, now what has been in the background seems to be coming out more.
    Still pondering this idea of be coming friends with this side,

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  16. My ex, whom I believe to be narcissistic sociopath, had a son who did not live with him. His ex wife lived five hours away in another state and would not let the child go visit my ex. I always found this to be odd, but thought perhaps she was as ‘bad’ as he told me she was. He would have to travel to her city and book a hotel room to see the child. After one of these visits he texted (he did not call) that when the child was returned to the mother the child cried and wouldn’t let my ex go. He said that “it was killing him” to leave his child. Was this a genuine statement? Is there some spectrum that someone with an ASPD can fall into that allows them some feelings of empathy or love?

    Since learning about narcissists I have often wondered if my mother had an ASPD of some sort. I used to joke with people that I didn’t go after men like my father, but men who had personalities like my mother. That is not really a joke. I don’t know if she was a narcissist, she seemed to have moments of empathy. Yet she was very abusive. Did exactly the same things my ex(es) have done to me. Triangulate, word salad, managed down expectations, intermittent rewards, raging, silent treatments, turned me against my father – the list could go on. She once threw a push lawn mower at my brother. (My brother thinks that is a funny story to tell.) Yet in the months before she died she often begged my forgiveness. Not that it gave me closure, but she did. Was she a narcissist or just someone abusive?

    Thank you for your insight and listening to me

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    1. Accepting the assumption that your ex is a narcissistic sociopath his comment about the situation killing him was uttered purely to derive fuel from you and to convey that it was killing him in the figurative sense being subject to such restraint at the hands of his ex wife.

      Your mother fits, from that description, as someone who is a narcissist. The apparent empathy she exhibited was probably feigned.

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  17. I watched a valuable youtube video today, Co-Parenting with a Narcissist After Divorce – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nVy9jdhhbhM.

    From my own experience, I would say the most true statement is this,
    “You CANNOT co parent with a narcissist, the only thing you can do is DAMAGE CONTROL.” As discouraging as it is, that’s pretty much what you can expect. The only thing I can do is remain the stable parent, not feed into the constant upheaval my ex creates either by forgetting what time to bring our child back home, or not feeding her dinner but failing to tell me so I can prepare for her arrival, or last minute plans or changes. This all has an effect on my child one way or the other and it is usually behavior outbursts, hyper activity, being extra combative, etc, and I just find myself having to deal with it. The other suggestions are to prepare as in prepare for the chaos ahead of time so, perhaps make sure home work is done before they leave, make sure they have snacks or you have ready made meals in the freezer etc. Sometimes the only thing that gives me hope is that I have an older child who has on their own come to the realization of who is the stable parent and who is not and by choice limits interaction and is doing personally rather well, I worry tons about my younger child, and just keep telling myself all I can do is keep showing my consistency, that I am safe, loving and responsible.

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      1. I hope this was the video I actually watched, I had to research it later on another device, oh well, either way I am currently in the midst of damage control, it’s infuriating and there is not much I can do, but minimize my contact, disengage, apply “gray rock” oh yes there was another video I watched with a female, hmmmm..oh freaking well, I’m dealing with the chaos that is created through the child, heaven knows its not the child’s fault, and has no idea that they are just a pawn, all I can do is stay my course.

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    1. Excellent advice CC, prepare anyway for chaos. It’s infuriating as it feels like letting the other parent off the hook though in the bigger picture it is for your child’s sanity. So sad. I’ve heard the concept of parallel parenting is helpful too.

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  18. HG, what do you believe would be the most successful manoeuvre(s) to defeat a NPD/BPD in court: where success is defined as protecting children from further abuse by the abusive parent?
    And what currently exists that could be referenced by a desperate parent to draw attention to the facts for the Court, without alerting the abuser which I presume would antagonise their rage?
    Can you suggest any phrases or labels or indeed anything that their legal reps in Court might use?
    Would this depend on the type of Narcissist?

    Any suggestions for damage limitation will be much appreciated.

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  19. Hi H.G.,
    gotta say, I’m so glad I found your site. This is immensely helpful.

    Don’t know if it’s been asked, but question:
    You said narcs get fuel from emotions. Do you get fuel from a crying baby?

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    1. Hello Sienna,

      Thank you for your kind comment. If the baby was crying because of something that I had done, yes, the likelihood of that happening however is minute because babies cry at all manner of different things (wind, being tired, hungry, needing changed etc) so knowing that I caused its crying would be unclear. Now, if I say took a toy away from a toddler which made him or her cry, that would provide fuel. The strength of that fuel would be low though as the toddler would be a tertiary source. That is why I prefer to apply my dark side machinations to primary sources and the occasional secondary source which crosses me.

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  20. I left my narc by escape during my pregnancy and created a 3,000 mile distance between us. He has 2 prior children that he has on weekends and spends about 30 minutes with them and has no interest. He has a new primary source and I am now the enemy of course. He is what I would consider to be between a lessor or mid-range and I’m currently in a 7 week silent treatment/discard phase and no longer his second. He is not on the birth certificate and my son is just under 4 months old. He is avoiding signing any papers acknowledging paternity and child support will be forced to be determined by DNA. He only asks about his son as a Hoover attempt in the past but asked a couple weeks ago for me to not contact him about our son (he sees the trip as I exposed him) and I have accepted this and see this as my chance to break free. I took my son to meet him and see his grandparents and was triangulated with the new primary source 7 weeks ago and received his full wrath as the person that left him. He was hot/cold depending on whether she was looking and the aftermath of that visit was awful and twisted. He showed his evil to his family without being provoked by me. The replacement was what HG described as an emergency replacement/panic pick. Lol. I’m expecting a Hoover at any time since they are not likely a great match and am I right on thinking this is my perfect time to officially go no contact? I already made my attempts to be a do gooder and I have no more moral obligation to this man let alone legal obligation. He has no financial resources for attorneys and is likely a lessor. Any thoughts are welcome and please know I tried with all my might to involve him until seeing the bigger picture.

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    1. If he isn’t on the birth certificate, take that as a blessing and run!! I’m a step mother raising 2 children that have to see their narc mom every other weekend and it’s hell on them and they hate going! She doesn’t show them any love, she just enjoys controlling them. Because of the children only being 9 and 12, it is required by court for them to go. The verbal and mental abuse is unreal and you can’t prove it bc it isn’t physical. Don’t ever let him have the power of signing his name if you can stop it. He might decide to step in and play controlling dad of the year when his primary fuel source is low.

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    2. If he is not on the birth certificate, you hit th jackpot. Don’t do the DNA and give him the legal right to be a parent as he will ruin your child’s life. I wish I was as lucky as you!

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  21. Hi HG, I haven’t had much luck finding a write up on narcissist parents on your page anywhere. This is my main battle with my conscience right now.
    I ask myself constantly if his behaviour is down to his parents being narcs so therefor learned behaviour.

    his dad beat him daily and he was made to work around the home from the moment he woke up, then after school it would continue through the night as his father was insomic so the children were made to stay awake with him. He humiliated him and made him strip to receive his punishment for looking at his father the wrong way or failing to do a job to his fathers satisfaction.

    eventually the school caught on by seeing his bruises and the kids were all taken away. However they were allowed back and this abuse continued. His father told him he was nothing and will amount to nothing. His mother ignored him and never showed love. There’s so much more to the story but this is why I forgive him each time. Because of what he has been through. However I don’t deserve to be treated with his disappearing and mind manipulation. He is so selfish with everything being about him and self pity. He drinks bingingly and that’s when he’s at his worse with me. He’s never threatened to hurt me but he gets so angry and defensive over any criticism or even disagreement.
    But he always come back eventually apologising and telling me that he always told me I’m better than him and please don’t leave him.

    Is this hoovering or genuine remorse?
    Is his outbreaks of narcness due to his alcohol consumption and self hatred or is he just really good at manipulation? 🤔

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  22. I have a daughter with my narc ex, she is 17 months old! So far he hasn’t been in her life a great deal, choosing to stay away the majority of the time. I think he was bored of her after about 5 minutes. I have gone no contact, changed my number, removed myself from all social media, and do not talk to anyone about him whatsoever. He has a new victim so is quite happy. I am not kidding myself that i won’t hear from him, i know he will crawl out from under his rock whenever his supply runs out or he isn’t getting enough. I will not allow him to treat my daughter as an appliance, no matter what people say or think. Her safety is my main concern. He has two older children from a previous relationship and i have seen first hand the damage he can cause, with his drinking , drug abuse and down right nastiness if he doesn’t get what he wants from them. 3 years of emotional, mental and physical abuse before i even realised what was going on and the impact on my life was devastating. I will not allow him to do that to my baby girl. I just wanted to thank you H G for the advice ,your material has helped me a great deal over the last few months.

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    1. Hello Maggie and thank you for making yourself known. I am pleased my material has proven so useful to you, keep reading.

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    2. Hello Maggie!
      I just wanted to say after reading your comment that is very strong of you what you have done for your daughter leaving him! The way you came out here and shared your story shows a huge amount of courage!
      Keep on,stay strong!

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      1. Thank you for saying that, don’t get me wrong the guilt is there i feel like a child should have both parents in their life! I need to do whats best for my baby girl and myself. Im lucky that she is so young and he hasn’t had much interest in her, no doubt that will change as she gets older but i will deal with that situation when and if it arises. I guess my love for my daughter far outweighs anything else . keeping her safe is what matters.

        Maggie.

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      2. Hello Maggie,
        Your welcome. You shouldn’t feel guilty! You are actually giving your little daughter a healthier platform for building up her future life by taking her out of that toxic environment with him. You are giving her the right tools to be a healthier person when adult. From what you write, it seems that he was really not present for her even though he was physically there. You have all the right to decide if in the future she really needs contact with her “father.”.if he can really be a father ( caring,loving, responsible). Have you thought that the role of a father can be taken by someone else who loves and cares for you ( and your daughter) even though he is not the biological father?
        According to me, you are doing all the right choices! Stay strong…

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      3. Hi superxena,

        Its still very early days from me realising that he was narcissistic and what i was being subjected to was narcissistic abuse so its very raw but as soon as i realised i cut of all contact. I suppose i feel guilty that i brought that into my children’s lives. I also realise that i have to accept some responsibility for what happened as being co~dependent means i allowed him to treat me badly out of fear of being alone. Im receiving therapy and on the road to sorting my issues out once and for all. I guess everything happens for a reason , i was supposed to meet him and experience all i did in order for it to never happen again.ill continue to raise my daughter the way i feel is best for her and will explain it all to her when shes old enough to understand. It helps reading all these posts knowing your not alone. I had no idea people like that existed till all this happened, naive or maybe kidding myself? Lol thanks again for the comments i really appreciate it.

        Maggie.

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      4. Maggie,
        You shouldn’t feel guilty for bringing him into your life and into your children’s life. It took me long time to realise that I actually didn’t do anything wrong. Neither did you. It was not your fault. It is the Narcissist that spots you and your traits and that draws you to them. You are not alone in having been seduced by them. And when you realise it ..well you are already in the spider web. Don’t blame yourself. As for being co-dependant it remains to see if you are really a co-dependant or he made you co-dependant to him. That is a big difference! It seems to me that you are not really a co-dependant since you left him! That is really strong of you. It is good that you are going to therapy…to break this co-dependency created by him and to find out if you are really a co-dependant. And you are on the right place in this site. You will find the articles and the interactions here extremely useful and valuable.Keep on!
        I must say that I have a HUGE RESPECT for those( like you) who have children with a narcissist and having been able to leave them breaking the toxic cycle saving the children involved!

        Sent from my iPad

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  23. Wonderful insight on the topic. I am currently struggling with this chapter in the long book of dealing with the Narc. The Narc in my life left me for another man after 13 years of marriage, somewhat not by her choice. After I discovered the affair and confronted her, the craziness that ensued led me right to the courthouse to file for divorce. I am now beyond that and very thankful to have been lucky enough to have the Narc leave. But she never really leaves my life because of the connection via our kids. My children tell me weekly of the emotional abuse that confuses them and break their hearts. I am fortunate to have fairly smart children that are beginning to see through what their Narc mother does, but none the less it hurts them. It hurts me to see their mother do this too them. Thank you, I am bookmarking this post, so I can remind myself what it all is when I get derailed.

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    1. Hello David,
      I find your comment very interesting. I think women cases are overrepresented in this site. It would be interesting to know more about your ex narcissist wife. What “type” of narcissist is she?
      What are her main narcissistic traits? If you feeling like sharing your story! I just have to say that having children with a narcissist must be one of the toughest situations when leaving them or have been left by them.

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      1. How do I know what type she is when she won’t talk or admit any fault to me. Her traits. Gaslighting, constant lying, grandiose, no remorse for any actions, poking fun at my interests and beliefs to the point that I questioned myself. Guilt trips of others is the manner in which she accomplishes 90% of things in her life. The world is always against her and she is very good at making everyone in her life believe it. Nothing is ever her fault. When I confronted her about the affair, she didn’t once talk about love or feelings, it was about the stuff she would have to leave behind so she could be happy with something new. Now, she is turning the children against me. I have been very careful not to talk poorly to the kids about their mother. Ever. I do not tell them what I think she is. I simply tell them me and their Mother could not be together anymore and that we both are better off.

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      2. David I don’t mean to butt in to your conversation! I can sense the hurt heartache and anger in your comment! Please believe me H G can help you!! He can get you through this just as he has helped so many others on here! Your hurt and confusion is no different then ours! Just because your a man doesn’t mean you are not a victim! Please seek his help!! 🌻

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      3. Hello Divad,
        Thank you for sharing. I do not know how recently this happened to you but I can ” read” the strength and determination in your words..specially in regards protecting your children. Just by expressing and writing about it denotes a lot of courage and strength!
        Best wishes!

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  24. In regards to a shared infant and texting. My former ex fiancé constantly texts me what time he dropped our son off at my house ( even though I have a home video system that alerts me if someone is at the front door.I am not there but my mother is to stop any unnecessary contact) and what time our son was last fed as well as other things even though he has already told my mom. Why would that be if he already knows that my mom would tell me whatever he is telling her. Also every time that I haven’t been at my house when he comes to pick up our son he asks my mother where I currently am. Why? I find that quite odd since him and I both decided to end our romantic relationship.

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  25. Hi, why don’t you write something on how narcissistic parents abuse their children? A book on this would interest a lot of people who haven’t been abused by a partner but by a parent.

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      1. Are you going to write in this about how your mother abused your sister, who if I am not mistaken is an empath? Or is it going to be mainly about you?

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