Copyright © 2009 by Richard A. Grossman, Ph.D. · All Rights reserved · E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
I am important. You are not.
This is the basic message that narcissistic parents send to their children. Unfortunately, they send it many different ways, verbally and nonverbally, and worse, they never acknowledge the message. They believe, and they want their children (and everyone else) to believe, that they are the most caring people in the world.
Many times, their children believe them. So often I have been told: "My mother/father was a saint," by adult children of narcissistic parents, that the phrase always sets off an alarm.
How do parents send the message: "I am important, you are not"? By consistently violating the three rules of voice (see Giving Your
They assume their child has to little to say about the world, and what he or she does say is insignificant.
They assume their child has plenty to learn from them, but they have nothing to learn from their child.
They insist the child enter their world to make contact. They don't enter their child's world because it is unimportant.
The very same parents who deprive their children of "voice" believe they are first rate caretakers. How do they deceive themselves so thoroughly? The first answer is that, often, their parents treated them the same way. Long ago they were deprived
Voicelessness and Emotional Survival