We were talking about narcissist-mom and toad-dad, and how they can bend a person’s boundaries. I person with bent boundaries can be pretty vulnerable to future predators of the personality-disordered variety, until those boundaries get fortified through time and work. Narcissists are like hyenas — very opportunistic, and always on the prowl for the easy, emotionally generous catch. (Plus they smell and whine and have greasy fur.)
This connection of the current narcissist to the crappy parent can be seen pretty vividly in the messages in the heads of the emotionally generous when we respond to narcissists and other toads. Look at what people say when they describe their reactions to these guys:
“I feel lost without him.”
“I felt this connection that I desperately need to feel again.”
“I love him. We had something so special, so unique.”
“I just need to have him back. I can’t explain it. But he has this effect on me that just goes through my whole body.”
“I need you. Jesus, just get normal about this, will you?!”
Now, these might sound a bit over-the-top to anyone who hasn’t been mauled by a narcissist-hyena, but they’re taken straight from the testimonials of survivors. This is the way toads WANT to make people feel — like they’re very special, gifts from the Gods, and irreplaceable. And they succeed in making people feel these things, but especially, and most viscerally, in people who have felt this way before.
Look at those statements. And put them in the mouths of kids, little ones, who are being left out in the cold by their parents. Then those statements make a whole lot of very clear sense.
Those feelings don’t get shaken off right away when a person gets to adulthood, because this is primal stuff and it leaves a mark. The statements above get applied to a manipulative and crafty toad when they tromp through the EXACT same breaches in your boundaries that the crappy parents did, the breaches in your boundaries that the crappy parents created. Your psyche is no dummy — it recognizes this, and remembers the pain and the anxiety from childhood. It remembers these things very well. And never forgot how important that connection was. That memory wakes up. This makes the toad feel even more important to us, along with the rest of his BS. Those effects — the breached boundaries, the memory of our childhood emotional starvation, and the current Toadcraft — all swirl together into a downward spiral. Hello, tornado-o’-misery.
This is fixable in emotionally generous people. All of it. The current toxic relationship, the emotional memories that take over, and the bent boundaries all can be straightened out with time and work. There’s more than hope; there’s pretty much no way you CAN’T fix these things, with some time and good work. This is in contrast to narcissists and other toads, who can’t be fixed, or improved, or trained, or helped. They’re permanently rotted out. They’re screwed.
If you got short-changed by a narcissistic parent, then you’re able to show yourself something remarkable. Write down in words the way you feel when the current Toadboy has you feeling your worst. Then look at those words, and imagine them coming out of the mouth of a kid to his crappy parent. I bet you’ll be astounded at how much more sense those feelings make when they’re applied toward the person for whom those feelings are really and originally meant — the person who cut you first.