I haven’t seen my mother in almost 30 years. Last time I spoke to her on the phone (Christmas 2016), I told her finally to GFY, because I was tired of her lies, drama, and judgements.
Why am I telling you this?
Because I still can’t make a bloomin’ YouTube video stay online! And now I realise why. I always felt like I wasn’t good enough. Its just me – who am I to tell, to show, to share?
See, growing up with a narcissistic parent is horrific. Everything you do is scrutinised to ensure it reflects admirably on the parent. Woe betide you if you fail in your duty to be an extension of their grandiose vision of themselves. Privacy is not an option, in any capacity. Bedrooms are routinely turned over looking for evidence of wrong doing. Journals are discovered and read out gleefully at the dinner table. Schools are besieged with phonecalls requesting that teachers keep an eye on you. Anyone who knows you are quizzed about things they might have picked up during conversation with you, and any snippets of information are swiftly corrected if it is perceived to be validating you. You learn to be a loner and keep your own counsel.
As a child, there is no sense of identity, value, or self worth. Any sense of pride at accomplishments is beaten out of you. Lectures about being a failure; about being an embarrassment; about the shame you bring to everyone who comes into contact with you, is a daily occurrence and lasts for hours until you fall into a blubbering wreck of gibbering apologetic nonsense. (Bonus points for apologising in advance. Daily.)
It becomes worse when another sibling is involved. Then its contrast and compare, and again you are found wanting. Classic Golden Child and the Scapegoat. The Golden Child becomes the echo of the Narc parent – if only to save themselves. Even if the Golden Child fails too…..its an honourable fail. They are loved.
So! Having thought about my reluctance to share – vs – current social media mania for sharing every nuance of life and subsequent windy aftermath, I finally understood why I was cautious about it.
And so I share my reason. Fearlessly, and without apology. I learned something today, and that is priceless. I still may never make numerous videos, but that’s ok. Its not about that, really. Its about trying, and being proud of trying, and feeling like you did your bit regardless.