“It wasn’t until more recently that I realized this, but my mother is narcissistic and manipulative of everybody else that comes into contact with her. I think about my childhood and the signs are all there, yet at that age, the age of youth, you almost expect any mother-son relationship to be somewhat normal as we do not know any better just yet. I do know a few key things from my childhood. I didn’t see my father much (my parents divorced when I was two or three years old) and it always seemed like things were always focused on what I did wrong as opposed to what I did right.
I was a typical boy growing up; I was continually on the Honor Roll as a child and had a decent number of friends. I started playing ice hockey when I was seven years old and absolutely fell in love with playing the game. As the years passed, my mother was always the team manager, and my stepfather would coach the team. I remember all too well the drive home after a game or practice, being yelled at and harassed by both of them in regard to all of the things I did wrong. If there was still time on the ride home, they would make sure to talk badly about certain parents and other teammates, sometimes while laughing. This was a common occurrence that I expected after hockey every time. Still at this age, I thought it was normal behavior, but my mother did seem to initiate a lot of it. My mother surely had to make sure that she was involved and taking credit for everything team-related though, another narcissistic trait mind you.
As I continued to get older, I realized other narcissistic qualities of my mother. I can’t tell you how many times I would have my ear up against a wall or a door to hear my own mother talking about me, or somebody else I knew, to another person. My mother was always judging others and looking down upon them as if she could never do anything wrong herself. I reflect upon this a lot as this behavior has always been toxic and a poor example of how to treat other individuals. My mother’s behavior seemed to always be the ‘my way or the highway,’ and, in turn, she could never admit when she was in the wrong.
I did not have a cell phone until my high school years, but my mother thought she was getting away with something when she made me leave my phone downstairs on the counter instead of bringing it up to my room with me. I know for a fact, and can guarantee, that this was her opportunity to dig up dirt on her own son and to see what he was doing on Myspace (the hottest social media website at the time), in texts, or anything else she wanted to see on my phone. This would be her way to manipulate me, to try to get inside of my head, and to intrude on my personal space. This would continue until the end of my senior year. I remember her pulling cell phone bills and printing them as another means of seeing who I was talking to.
It wasn’t until my senior year that I had my first real girlfriend. This was the beginning of seeing my mother’s true colors and her narcissistic behavior. My senior year was also the year that my sister was born. I always felt like it was my mother’s mission to intimidate my girlfriend as she never gave her a real chance. My mother didn’t want to get to know her; after all, I was my mother’s son, not my girlfriend’s boyfriend. This has been a long struggle that was completely un-needed, but that’s just my opinion of the subject matter.
I fell head over heels in love with my girlfriend rather quickly and it seemed like my mother saw how happy I was and used it to her advantage to manipulate me and to try to get us to break up. My mother would set later curfews on the weekends for me, so I could see my girlfriend longer over time, but me being the one in love would test the curfew a fair amount of times, as most teenagers do. I remember the next morning a few times after breaking curfew and my mother would be mad, but she would also lie and say how I was rude for coming home and making popcorn and opening the fridge. While small lies of my mother, she was using it to further manipulate in her narcissistic ways.
I successfully graduated high school and I wanted my girlfriend to attend the ceremony. I could sense that my mother didn’t want her there as they’d have to sit by one another, and my mom’s narcissistic thinking of, ‘Why does she deserve a ticket, she won’t even be around forever?’ That was my mother’s mentality ever since I started dating my girlfriend. My thoughts and emotions were never taken into account with how she acted.
About a month or so later, I had fallen asleep at my girlfriend’s house and arrived back home that morning to find all of my stuff on the front lawn of my parent’s house. A lot of arguing, crying, and hurtful emotions came out right then and there. My girlfriend and I loaded up my car. Thankfully, my girlfriend’s parents were willing to take me in, with some ground rules of course. It didn’t matter though; I was free of my narcissistic mother, or so I thought.
It wasn’t but a few days of living at my girlfriend’s parent’s house that I found several disturbing message board posts on a website that my mother thought was private. I found several posts where my narcissistic mother referred to my girlfriend as a ‘White trash Gutter Whore.’ My mother also went out of her way to look down upon her parents, their home, and anything else that she could think of to lie and exaggerate about. But that still wasn’t the worst of what I found! My narcissistic mother put on a message board that, ‘she’d like to dig a hole in her backyard and bury my girlfriend in it.’ My girlfriend and I called my mother that next morning and told her what we had found. My narcissistic mother not only did not own up to what she said, 100% denial, but she also tried to turn in right back around on us. She started yelling at us for things she claimed that we did wrong. Once again, the discussion got heated, my girlfriend’s parents got somewhat involved, (she was still a minor at the time), and it was pretty much concluded that we would part ways from each other for a while.
A couple of years seemed to go by where I retained minimal contact with my mother, but my girlfriend, now fiancée, and I worked at the local grocery store together. One day, my fiancé and I both worked, but how our shifts worked out, I let my fiancée drive my car. As my fiancée was leaving work one day, my narcissistic mother sped across the parking lot, yelled at her, told her to get out of my car, and then proceeded to give her a ride home. This was the most stalkeresque thing a narcissistic person could do. How did she know when we worked? How did she know what our game plan was? Once again, more manipulation.
My fiancée and I got married in August of 2012. My mother did come to our wedding, wearing a black dress and all. We did the typical mother and groom dance, and it was a pretty tense situation. Other than that, we saw my mother converse with hardly anybody and she didn’t really partake in any of the other wedding festivities that night. If I didn’t know any better, she may as well have been at a funeral. In 2017, my wife and I were fortunate enough to go through IVF (In Vitro Fertilization) after so many years of infertility. My mother decided that she wanted to throw a baby shower, but the list of people invited had to be scaled back and fit up to her standards. She was really convinced that she was going to be the best grandmother that she could be. She even bought some baby items for her house in case we needed her to watch our daughter, or for when we all visited. This was the most she’d been involved in my life for a long time and it wasn’t even all that much.
In 2018, my wife and I were lucky again to find out we would be having another baby together. Everything with this pregnancy, from the start to the finish, was completely scary. Our son would be born eight weeks early and although he wasn’t a small size, he required a longer NICU stay to more develop his little lungs. My wife and I were under a tremendous amount of stress and we took turns seeing our son as we still had to take care of our daughter. My mother came up to the hospital to see our son once or twice during the time that he was in the NICU. That was one of the last times my mother saw our son.
My narcissistic mother has totally kicked my little family, other family members, and a good portion of friends and acquaintances out of her life completely without much explanation at all. The last time I saw my mother was when I was at the store picking up cupcakes for my son’s 1st birthday. I saw her from afar at the store and questioned whether or not I should even say hello to her. My sister is the one that pointed me out to my mother, but not without whispering something to my mother first as if she was asking if they should stop to talk to me or not. I found that behavior to be extremely peculiar; maybe I’d understand the reasoning if I was a criminal or something, but not her brother. My mother made a lackadaisical attempt to speak to me, explaining that she cannot be around the kids due to health reasons but continued to tell me how she was having to work 5-6 days a week at her job.
I could tell that there was something medically going on with her, but I still do not warrant that as an excuse to kick everybody out of your life, especially those that care about you. After all, she did not ask about the kids in our exchange of words and acted like it was no big deal that she hadn’t seen either one of her grandchildren for over a year now. One thing from that conversation has stuck with me, though, as it was one of the last things she said to me that day: ‘You’re looking at me like your dad would.’ I’m not sure quite what my expression was at that point in time as seeing her somewhere was like I had just saw the Lockness monster. I’ve over-analyzed that statement to death. My mother has not responded to texts, phone calls, messages, or anything that we send her. We’ve asked her for explanations as to why she won’t see her grandchildren, or make an effort, and it all just goes ignored.
All I wanted for my children was for them to know who their grandmother is and have some kind of relationship with her. I’m starting to learn that it may be a huge mistake and I should never beg anybody to be in my children’s lives when other family and friends actually want to be.
Mother, I leave you with this:
All I ever wanted was your love.”
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