I've been mentally debriefing the whole lunch with my parents last weekend. There was a point where I sat back, let out a sigh, and said out loud with a tired acceptance: "They're both terrible people. I was *raised* by those people." My wife was sitting nearby and responded "You were *housed* by those people. You *raised* yourself." I thought that was really well-said and wanted to share it here for anyone else that went through a similar childhood.
In many ways, yeah. Housed and fed. It's like an itch, it can become an almost obsession trying to solve the rubix cube of NPD parents. And we just want someone to tell us what to fix, like something is missing. But idk if you need it. For my anyways, I just needed to accept thats how they are, thats what they did, thats what they continue to do in the present moment---because it's all they are capable of doing/being. And idk if it's the same for you, but for me that gave me closure. I still sometimes try to have normal interactions, like last night, she said to me "hows your day been? love you! miss you!" And I replied "it was good, counting my blessings, love you miss you too" And instead of being curious, (ever) she just said "oh it must be late there for you, love you, have a good night!" That is the same sort of interaction we have, always. ALWAYS. And it absolutely hurts. When you as a human being dont exist more than "how are you", and thats the depth the conversation always goes. And Ive become like that. Ive become defensive, and it's like a part of you breaks and is unable to conmect with people because you feel like no one actually cares.
@Doodle1234 Very true. I’ve gotten to the point where you are where I’ve accepted that my mother is not capable of being a better version of herself. Once I realized that, I was able to let go of the resentment and anger. As you say, though, the shallowness still hurts, and I still mourn the mother I wish she was but could never, will never be. I was holding out some hope for my dad, because he’s an intelligent man who I know is capable of self awareness (or was). But I think that part of him is buried too deep now to reach in any meaningful way.
Connecting with other people in adulthood was a rocky road for a bit, because I subconsciously gravitated towards partners and friends with personality disorders. I just assumed that’s how everyone was, not realizing I was just recreating the toxic relationship with my parents over and over. Eventually I learned better though, and made better choices about who to let into my life. It’s hard to clear that hurdle of distrust, though, and keep from figuring you’re better off alone.