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Sweetestaboo's avatar

How do I deal with my narcissistic mother while living with her?

Asked by Sweetestaboo (57points) November 28th, 2018

My Narcissistic mother had an inappropriate response to a request this morning. My stepdad asked her to drive her car to work this morning, instead of my sister’s car; which she had been driving for a while now. This would mean moving a couple cars from behind her car in orded for her to drive her own car. Even so, she went on a shouting spree, talking about why she was not asked to do it the day before, and askinv what’s wrong with everyone else’s car. She has to be at work at 7:30 am. Her job is 5 minutes away. She was asked this at 6:50 am, and made a big splash about making her late for work for having her drive her own car. She said it was inconvenient because it had not been driven in days. She complained about how it would take time to put her new tag sticker on it. The thing is, she had the tag sticker sitting around for a couple weeks now. So she did some more yelling, grabbed my sister’s car keys, and drove off with my sister’s car anyway. Had anyone of you had a Narcissistic parent act this bad?

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25 Answers

canidmajor's avatar

I have a seriously dysfunctional family that I have had to find various ways of coping with.
I have found good resources and helpful advice on this site:
I recommend checking it out. It’s anonymous and the people are kind.

josie's avatar

I wouldn’t call that narcissism.
But she clearly was in a pretty shitty mood.

canidmajor's avatar

@josie This is a very typical example of N behavior.

LadyMarissa's avatar

I don’t see her attitude as narcissistic…more as selfish. My dad was a lot like your mom & he always told me from the time that I was little that “as long as I lived in his house, I had to live under his rules”. A couple of times in my life, I discovered that I was better off struggling to live on my own because I found living under his rule to be unbearable!!! In many ways, living away from his home made me a better & stronger person!!! Many a day was beating me down & I just thought back to what it was like living in his house & I’d refocus & find a better way to solve my dilemma.

You didn’t give your age & maybe you can’t move out…yet. Still, I would consider it a more agreeable option than living with her the way she is. It’s a lot easier to deal with when you don’t have to “live in” it!!!

mazingerz88's avatar

If this is the first time it ever happened I would ignore it and do what she wants of being told much earlier that she would need to use her car. My guess is most working people have their own morning routine they wouldn’t want disrupted.

Also if there’s any chance of having her car end up being parked out front in the evening so she doesn’t have to move two cars in the morning, that would help.

kritiper's avatar

The question has no logical applicable answer.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, I see her point too. Why wasn’t she asked the day before, instead of 30 minutes before she had to be to work? Was there a valid reason for her to have to all of a sudden take her car at the last screaming minute, or was someone being petty?
This was only one instance, and I don’t blame her for being frustrated. That doesn’t mean she’s narcissistic. We really need more information on this one situation, for example was the weather bad? Was it icy and freezing and was she expected to move all the vehicles herself?

Sweetestaboo's avatar


She screams about everything.
At any given time, she geyts angry. It’s not just wih us, its with other people. She has this idea we are out to get her and that we are trying yo break her down. If we do something to help out, which we do most of the time, she down plays it as nothing. She belittles us. She doesn’t want my sister and I to move out and have a life od our own. Just work, cook for her, and clean all the time. She wants us to sweep the house “daily”. When we do, she complains that it wasn’t done. If I have an opinion about anything, she gives me a hate look and insults my intellegence. She always calls me out of my bed to move my car from behind her or my stepdad’s car. So its not like this is out of the norm. Its just that we “asked her” this time. Her just if no more that 5 mins away. We asked her on her 30 mins before she had to leave the house. We didn’t ask the day before because we were not aware were everyone was parked. She has a habit of doing worse things to us and getting outrageously angry when the smallest thing offends her. If you knew her, you would be awed by her behavior.

Dutchess_III's avatar

How old are you? Do you work and contribute, or are you going to school?

Why did you guys want her to drive her own car?

Why didn’t someone say something the day before? When you’re on a tight schedule in the morning, things like this can throw a person way out of whack.

Was she expected to move both cars out of the way herself?

Were her concerns about the car not starting valid?

What is / was the weather like there / yesterday? Here it is very cold and the cars are frozen with frost in the morning. I have a car I haven’t driven in several weeks and there is a good chance it wouldn’t start.

Sweetestaboo's avatar


We needed to drive my sister’s car. Because it was the car that could take the long journey my sister, me and stepdad were going on that morning. The weather was not bad and it was early. She would not have been late. No one was asking her to kove aby cars. We simply said she would need to drive her own car that day, since we needed my sister’s car. If a thing like that had to be said the day before, when all our cars are in the same driveway, that is egotism at it’s grandest. We were not needing yo dfive it ghe day before. What could she have done then, go to work overnight with her car? This is the same mother who loves to ask us to do things last minute whether we are able to or not. And we do it without shouting or yelling about whether its convenient. And of course, I work, pay rent, pay bills, and more. I get up at t am to take her do get her surgeries done without complaining while she insults and belittles me in the car, while taking her to her appointments. While helping her in the house after taking her home. I clean. I cook. And she still bitches. She deserves no defending, because she’s not being taken for granted.

canidmajor's avatar

@Sweetestaboo: You don’t need to explain or justify your family’s actions here because someone doesn’t understand that an adult throwing a tantrum about a fairly simple thing, an inconvenience at worst, is not normal adult behavior.
What you describe is poster behavior for a narcisstic. The more realistic adult reaction would be irritated and annoyed, but just cope.

Sweetestaboo's avatar

@canidmajor @LadyMarissa @josie

Yes, thank you.
Her reaction to normal everyday life is so unmatched. My sister told me mom went to her dictor a few months ago complaining about breathing issues. The doctor eventually diagn. her with some sort of chronic anxiety issues. And that she didn’t have any rsal physicall issues with her lungs. Turns out sge stopped her anxiety meds without doc’s permission. Sge will get on thd phone and straight up lie about us to her friends. The other night dhe called a friend and liedcaboug us not talking to her. When she is that one ignoring us and giving silent treatment when we try to speak to her. Shd complains about working hard all her life and still not having a career with a better husband and better children. She has a lot to be grateful for but still complains. She regrets making sacrifices to raise my sister and I. She makes us aware of it all the time. Tells us shd is the only person in the world that loves us, and that we need to remember that. If she insults us and we say something about it, she turns it around to say we are taking it too setioud and she was joking. Which she wasn’t. She just expect us to keep quiet when she wants to rude. But she will yell and scream at the drop of a hat and get offended at insignificant things. She wants respect from us, but insults and belittle us in every exchange. She had a thing where she said she is always right. And at the same time she said she is humble. Who says they’re humble? Def. not humble people.

Dutchess_III's avatar

So your mother was completely unaware of a long journey the three of you had planned for that morning, until the last minute?

canidmajor's avatar

@Dutchess_III, that stuff is not remotely the point. When dealing with that kind of an overt narcissist, the details, the specific situation, don’t matter, she will find a reason, any reason to have some kind of tantrum.

@Sweetestaboo, do go visit that site I posted, so many of us have experienced similar episodes with a narcissistic parent. It’s the pattern of behavior that you describe that is really distinctive. The details of the car issue don’t matter, it’s the reaction that speaks the loudest.

Sweetestaboo's avatar


No. She knew about it, for a while. It was a very important trip. We talked about it the night before even. When we go on trips, we use my sister’s car cuz its more reliable. That’s besides the point. It can’t be normal to throw a fit and scream about someone asking her to drive her own car. All she had to do is go in her car and turn the key. What difference is it to her which car she drove? This is not an isolated incident from how she usually behaves. she came home tonight and the first thing I hear is a shouting from her asking who left the lid of the trashcan open. Not “Hey guys. I’m home”, etc. She was even angry at me because I didn’t want to put salt on my avocado as she suggested, sorry, demanded. Even after I told her It was ok for me without salt. Who gets irritated because some doesn’t want to eat the way you want them to? She’s just bitchy.

Sweetestaboo's avatar


Thank you. I did visit the site.
I will be looking into it some more.
I appreciate your understanding.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, the difference is not which car she had to drive, but what she had to go through to drive the car….move two other cars out of the way, get the tag on it, all at the last minute, early in the morning.

But since she knew about it the day before I guess there is no excuse for her getting upset…though why others didn’t help out by moving the cars in advance is something I don’t understand. It was your guys’ trips and none of you had to get ready for work the next morning. Why was it all on her?

Sweetestaboo's avatar


One of the reason why people like her act the way they do is because there is always someone to back them up. Even though I wrote in clear details, you miss the point.
First off, she didn’t need to move two cars, any cars to drive her car. We were ready to move it. Whe she was ready, all sge had to do was jump in her car and go to work. Second, her car did not need the new tags. Her tag on the car has not expired. The time she spent shouting and arguing about it, she could gave driven her car. No one was putting anything “all on her”. See, this is what I am talking about. The exaggerated notion that she is being victimized. Its a clear narc. trail to dehumanize the intention of others for the sake of recieving
Solicited sympathy when there has not been any harm done to them.
What about all the time she inconveniently ask us to move our cars, drive her somewhere last minute without any notice? Did she at those times felt angry at herself? Narc. people always think they get a pass to do things to others, but are deeply hurt by “salt grain size “offenses.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I do not see anywhere in your detail, or anywhere in this thread, where anyone offered to move the cars for her.
This is also the first time I heard that her tag was not yet expired.
Without that information it certainly sounded like she was being ganged up on, but apparently not.

Does anyone else in the house work?

canidmajor's avatar

@Dutchess_III : You seem to be missing the point. The point is the tamtrumming and demands and criticism, not the car. Really, not the car.

Dutchess_III's avatar

And I can’t believe you’re willing to just jump in feet first and take sides with an emotional child who is mad at her mommy without getting more specific information @canidmajor. Maybe Mom actually has a valid reason for being angry. Or maybe not. There is no way to come to a rational conclusion with the vague information that’s been given to us.

canidmajor's avatar

Oh, good grief, the information is not vague, it’s classic, textbook stuff, a number of examples have been given. Sides are not being taken, information is being assessed. But never mind, arguing with you is also not the point. <eyeroll>

Sweetestaboo's avatar


Am not even gonna entertain the “does anyone else in the house work”, “or the being ganged upon” statements. I have a suspicious feeling you are this type of parent. That’s why you are responding this way. First off, I am not a child, let alone an emotional one. I am not “mad at my mommy”, which sounds very condescending by they way. Its sounds quite premature to assume that. I have knowm my mother all my life. The sun can not shine for a day, and that alone can enrage her. What you seemed to have missed from what I initally said, was that her behavior is not limited to just us. She has issues with supervisors and coworkers, even customers because of her narc. ways. She always has to control the situaltion, when there is nothing to keep under control. I know of a lot of childhood issues that she has talked about that has influenced her behavior. She even said she has not figured out a way to stop being so angry for unknown reasons. I am not a very emotional, sentimental, entitled, sensitive, or bratty daughter. I rather analize rationally amd logically before looking at things from just a feeling that I may feel. I try to be as kind and understanding towards her as possible. But with her, saying the right or wrong thing, is whatever she thinks it is. And just for the heck of it, she’ll try to intimidate you with a verbal whipping. let’s get back to the small issue I initially mentioned about the cars. Listen, you can’ t realistically say or even rationalize someone getting angry and verbally abusive to – “hey, can you drive your car today to work and we’ll use this other car for the trip since it’s more realible”. If I asked a mental expert, I am pretty sure what the answer would be. If it made sense that she rationally got angry, then all the other times she made things enconvenient (imagined or not) for use, we inappropriately stayed calm and complied, inapproriately. The rational thing would have been to get angry and verbally abuse too. Just to be fair.

I am thankful that you get what I am saying. One of the unforseen issue with posting certain things like this online, is that you could possibly come across someone with the same personally issue that you are discussing, and just their insistance on seeing the obvious and explanatory topic, tells you they are alike. Narcissist are such “gas lighters”. They are the hardest people to reach on any matter. They have catch phrases that they use to entrap others. They like for people to think they are doing harm to them. And those who accept such behavior ard eith narcissist themselves, or another believer of a Narcissist. You can tell when something is really wrong when someone can’t understand something simple, and would defiently stand on one mindset with plause. You can show a man what red looks like, but if he feels like being differ for the heck of it, that beep will be green if he says it is.

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