Dr. McBride’s book is the first one that I read on narcissism, & opened up my spiritual journey. Most importantly, it is God that led me to come across her book in late May last year. Yes, He works in mysterious & miraculous ways.
What Dr. McBride wrote in this article is especially validating (quoted below). I was brainwashed since early childhood that parents who provide food, clothing, and a roof over your head are good-enough parents. Also, since my grandfather & uncles are physically abusive, I was told repeatedly by my nm that I should be grateful that my father didn’t hit me. How odd! Since when did not being hit by one’s parent become a privilege? I thought that’s basic human right! As long as I was provided with those material goods, I shouldn’t ask for more. If I tried to express my emotion, be it positive or negative, I was being ungrateful, complaining, and an irritant to my parents. When I had a good day out there, or had some achievements, I wanted to share with my parents, and hoped they would at least see me. I was groomed/trained to become an extreme echoist that I had given up the hope of being praised by them. “If they could just see me…”– this was good enough for the little girl I used to be.
But I always knew the (pretentious) love & material goods my narc parents give to my siblings unconditionally are way more than I would have ever imagined, and could dare to ask for. Long before I studied psychology in college, I had always sensed something is very odd in my biological family. I always had the feeling that I was surrounded by wolves. Something interesting: only in my early 20s that I learned the idiom “be surrounded by wolves” came from the Bible, but then why did I feel that way since early childhood? The only explanation is that God was already speaking to my subconsciousness. He was waiting for me to be fully prepared, & equipped me with the tools I need. When the moment was right, he revealed the truth to me, and raised everything I was trapped with to a whole new conscious level, so that I now have the tools to break free from those traps!
“I want to declare and shout that parenting is not about food, clothes, and a roof over your head. You can get that at an orphanage. Parenting is tuning into the emotional welfare of your children and caring about what they are thinking and feeling. It is noticing who they really are and encouraging them to be their special authentic selves. It is the life long job of guiding, nurturing, and treasuring them every step of the way. I call it “permanent parenthood!” Adult children of narcissistic parents consistently say to me, “ I just wanted to be seen and heard!” ~ Dr. Karyl McBride