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Using depression to cover up narcissistic behaviour

(7 Posts)
Jellymuffin Sun 08-Jan-17 14:16:59

I posted this on another thread but felt like I was hijacking. Here goes!
Just out of interest, does anyone else's mum use depression as a smokescreen for their narcissistic behaviours? My mum seems to use it as a 'get out of jail free' card to ensure no one questions or criticises her behaviour while having no empathy for others (I had shocking PND and when I tried to open up to her about it she tried to trump it by blaming a previously unmentioned suicide attempt on myself and my husband). She takes no responsibility for any of her life choices and is unhappy. I feel like it is my job to make her happy but now I have a 3.5 year old and work full time, I just don't have the energy for it. She is also now a horrendous reverse snob (despite being a real hyacinth bucket when I was growing up) and sneers at the 'middle classes' and tries to belittle all my choices and friendships based on this. It's exhausting.

PassTheSatsumas Mon 09-Jan-17 00:49:26

Yes! Mine does this too .., that thread has been an eye opener for me... I thought I had realised my mum's narcissistic tactics but spending the weekend under her roof was like playing 'narc action bingo' ... she provoked a fight then had a big sob about how everything I ever got in life was 'due to her sacrifices '...

But I digress : yes, depression, sobbing on Xmas day that her adult child (me) is not with her every weekend like my siblings...

Lots of illnesses/depression/anxiety... I could go on for days

This link from the other thread was amazing:
parrishmiller.com/narcissists.html

PassTheSatsumas Mon 09-Jan-17 00:50:48

I think they also flare up when you stop low-towing to them ... worth having a google of narc grandmothers to know how to protect your child from getting dragged in ...

Fidelia Mon 09-Jan-17 01:20:05

Might be worth being aware, that some people with BPD do genuinely get depression but also have a lot of narc tendencies. So it may be that?

Imbroglio Mon 09-Jan-17 10:09:39

Depression can make people present as very self-centred and self-absorbed, so I think you need to think quite carefully before deciding how to respond.

Many narcissists genuinely suffer from depression. Life as a narcissist is actually quite shit, I imagine.

My litmus test is that narcissistic people generally won't seek or accept 'help' because its not them.

GeekLove Mon 09-Jan-17 10:27:12

I had an ex-boyfriend who I suspect had some narc tendencies covered up under 'depression'. I kick myself about not dumping him sooner.

Thing is there are so many people out there who use the depression card as 'I'm depressed therefore it is a free hand to be a complete douche.'
There was also a former acquaintance who did similar too - however although he had the energy to spend other people's money and hang around in bars it didn't extend to personal hygiene.

PassTheSatsumas Mon 09-Jan-17 10:33:51

Imbroglio - I think you are spot on about narcissistics not wanting help: it's because they don't want to change

That has been v characteristic of the narcs I have known (my mum, an ex) who even when in a crisis didn't want counselling/therapy: they want the outside world (and especially the people in it) to conform to the way they want it, not to change themselves to live better in a world where other people are free to do their own thing

The gift thing was a revelation too!

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