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Do Narcissistic Parents
Love Their Children?

Copyright 2009 by Richard A. Grossman, Ph.D.    All Rights reserved    E-Mail: ragrossman@voicelessness.com
Do narcissistic parents love their children?  Most narcissistic parents feed, shelter, and, at the least, provide basic necessities for their children.  Do they do this out of love?  Or because of the image their care portrays?  Evolutionary psychology suggests one possible way to explore the question of love in narcissistic parents.  In a matter of life and death, would a narcissistic parent choose to die and have their child live, or vice versa?   To try to root out a possible answer to the question of narcissistic parents and love, I recently created a survey on the Voicelessness and Emotional Survival Message Board called "The When Push Comes to Shove, Mini-Titanic Narcissistic Parent Poll".

Here is the poll question:

Imagine the following scenario:

You are in a motor boat on the ocean, alone with your narcissistic parent.  You are 8 years old and your parent is 40.   Suddenly, there is an small explosion in the boat.  No one is injured, but it is clear that the boat will sink.  There are no lifejackets, but there is a lifeboat.  Unfortunately, the lifeboat will hold only one person.  (If  2 people try to get in or hold on it will sink).  Therefore, it is obvious that only one person will survive.  What would your parent do? 

1.  Tell you to get in the lifeboat and row to shore, and say: "I love you."
2.  Tell you to get in the lifeboat and row to shore and say "I'm a hero because I'm saving your life"
3.  Get in the lifeboat and say: "I'm doing the practical thing---you wouldn't have been able to row to shore anyway"
4.  Get in the lifeboat and say "you've always been a disappointment anyway" and tell everyone on shore you died in the explosion
5.  Get in the lifeboat and laugh as you go under

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Love Their Children?

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