Release, Tolerate, and Disengage

As a child, you likely did not understand the depth of your narcissistic parent’s illness. It’s often the adult child’s unhealed wound that makes one prone to clinging—and a target for clingers. As you release, your anxiety might surge (do not hesitate to seek the help of a qualified therapist). But if tolerated, it can become manageable. If you don’t disengage, you remain in the insanity and you prolong the anxiety of letting go. Once that happens, you’ve triggered the unhealthy dynamic again.

Too much focus on the “other”— in this case, the narcissist parent—takes away from one’s own healing. It does this by perpetuating the off-kilter belief in the adult child’s psyche that the parent is the center of everything. Rejection of the dynamic is in opposition to what the narcissist parent wants of you.

Adapted from When Your Parent Is a Narcissist

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