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My bloody bloody mum

(37 Posts)
Eyeslikethesea Thu 16-Mar-17 21:27:08

My mum is a high functioning alcoholic, undiagnosed narcissism and the most toxic individual I have ever met. My dad on the other hand is kind, compassionate and wonderful. His only flaw is that he loves my mum unconditionally.
Over the years there have been many times I just wanted her out of my ice but I can't because I love my dad.
And now my dad has cancer.
My wonderful, loving selfless dad has cancer and my mum is in her fucking element. I don't doubt she loves him and he's her rock but it's all about her.
I can't phone to see how he is without her answering the phone and speaking for him. I go round and he can't get a word in edgeways. Her drinking is out of control and I can't do anything.
I'm so so angry. Why my dad.
He will tell you he loves my mum and she is and always will be his choice but his life has been filled with drama, her spite, her malice and controlling behavior.
Why my dad.

NotTheFordType Thu 16-Mar-17 21:30:09

I'm very sorry, but your dad has chosen to spend his life pandering to a narcissistic partner, and taking what he needs from her rather than protecting you.

Presumably your dad has his own mobile phone? If so, contact him only by that and make arrangements to see him when your abuser is not present.

But do not be too disappointed if he declines. He has after all spent your entire life putting your abuser's needs before yours.

Eyeslikethesea Thu 16-Mar-17 21:51:22

It genuinely doesn't feel that way. He protected us when we were tiny. As we grew up we knew that we had to tow the line. When we became adults it was understood that for a quiet life we just went along with it. I once asked him why he was putting up with the treatment she was doling out, and he just said "I love her". He is a good man. I just can't cope with the fact that I can't bear to see her but I need to see my dad.

fc301 Thu 16-Mar-17 22:48:20

No pearls of wisdom but you have my sympathy 💐💐

Eyeslikethesea Fri 17-Mar-17 11:09:44

Thank you x

hellsbellsmelons Fri 17-Mar-17 11:39:38

My dad had it too.
He is the nicest man in the whole world.
He had bladder cancer twice and then prostate cancer.
He's got through all of it - god bless him.
He's been clear for a good year now (fingers crossed)

What type of cancer and what is the prognosis?
It's such a kick in the teeth when it happens to such good people.
There is no reasoning for it all.

My dad lives a good healthy life.
Moderate drinking. Hasn't smoked for 49 years!
But he gets it 3 times.
It's not fair but it's something you need to get on with and help him through (if you can get passed your mother)
You don't ever think about being without your parents.
It's the realisation that they are not immortal.
They won't be here forever. It's just horrible.

AttilaTheMeerkat Fri 17-Mar-17 12:48:26


I am very sorry to read about your dad's cancer diagnosis.

Your dad is her willing enabler and narcissistic women always but always need a willing enabler to help them. He has also failed you abjectly as a parent by sacrificing your wellbeing on her alter. He has also acted out of self preservation and want of a quiet life, this is what bystanders do. She has always been his choice and he told you as much that this was the case. What you write is very typical of what happens in narcissistic family structures where the father enables the dysfunction to continue. He failed completely to protect you back then from the excesses of your mother's behaviours.

Your mother will continue to make your Dad's cancer all about her; it is what such people do. Women like your mother cannot actually do relationships so the men in their lives are either discarded, are as narcissistic as their wife is or are otherwise used as your dad has allowed himself to be used.

Eyeslikethesea Fri 17-Mar-17 14:47:31

Thanks for the replies. He has cancerous tumour on one of his kidneys and nodules (I think that's the right term) on his lungs and thyroid. He's going for another scan on his liver as they want to be sure they haven't missed anything.
hells thank you for that. To be honest I've always worried about this happening, well something like this. My dad is the barrier, the sponge that we all rely on and without him I can't imagine what she would be like. Not only that though,he's my dad. I utterly adore him.
attilla I know what you're saying is true. But to me, not to my siblings mind you, he is just as damaged as us. His mum was a carbon copy of his wife. It's like he jumped from one narcissist to another like it was all he ever knew. I can't find it in me to blame him for what she's like.

tinglyfing Fri 17-Mar-17 16:37:23

I'm so sorry you're in this horrible situation op. Have you talked to Macmillan about maybe engineering a way for you to spend time with your lovely dad without your mother being around?

springydaffs Fri 17-Mar-17 20:48:58

and narcissistic women always but always need a willing enabler

Narcissistic women?? Just trying to clarify if you specifically mean women need a willing enabler..

Eyeslikethesea Fri 17-Mar-17 23:13:22

He just won't do anything without my mum there.
I go round sometimes and she's gone out for lunch or coffee, or he will take me to hospital appointments if my husband can't and i make the most of that.
The anger towards my mum comes in waves now. It's like all the anger Ive had to swallow over the years is bubbling just beneath the surface and terrified that one day I'll start screaming and never stop.
Theres also the fear that Ill end up like her.

BusyHomemaker Fri 17-Mar-17 23:25:48

I'm sorry that you are your dad are going through this flowers

I don't think you will end up like your mother as you have insight into your family dynamic and from the sounds of things, some self-awareness. Have you read "Will I Ever Be Good Enough?: Healing the Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers" by Karin McBride? You may find it useful, although I haven't read the final section as I'm not quite ready but I can certainly recommend the book up to that point!

RedastheRose Fri 17-Mar-17 23:34:00

Try not to blame your dad too much. It is well known that if you have experienced a narcissistic parent when growing up then you are much more likely to end up with a narcissistic partner because you are so used to pandering to other people's feelings and putting your own wants and needs second. It sounds as though your Dad has done his best but he was damaged by his early life and has clearly done his very best to protect you since realising he'd married the same kind of person.

Eyeslikethesea Fri 17-Mar-17 23:53:10

Thank you, I'll try that book busy
red that show I feel about his situation. All his life has been about trying to keep someone else happy and then this happens. He bloody deserves some real happiness, not the "happiness" my mum has given him.
When I think about the times when we were kids and he took the hit for us, or when I realised she only hit us when he was at work, it breaks my heart.
My dad loved us, spent time with us and showed us we were loved and wanted. Even when it made mum angry because he was the "favourite".
The worst thing is is that I love my mum too. Why the hell is that?
Surely that's messed up?

Alice212 Sat 18-Mar-17 00:00:37

Oh I feel for you
I have a lovely mum and a horrible dad
He's been complicated - he got ill, became much nicer for about ten years! - then went back to being an arse, now mum feels to old to leave.

I can't get one without the other either! Gah.

Would you like an unmumsnetty hug and some flowers

Eyeslikethesea Sat 18-Mar-17 12:41:05

Thank you alice It's difficult isn't it?!

springydaffs Sat 18-Mar-17 17:23:07

Have you been to al-anon?
Or ACA (adult children of Alcoholics).

FellOutOfBed2wice Sat 18-Mar-17 17:34:00

This sounds like my Grandparent. Grandmother is an alcoholic narc, Grandfather a gentle, kind soul. They split for several years before I was born but when he came to the crunch and divorce was imminent, they got back together. Spent the next 30 years miserable. They were from a different generation, I get why he didn't divorce her but it made my Mums childhood pretty terrible that he enabled her (and I loved him to bits- he was lovely but he did enable her behaviour).

He died of a heart attack at 80 and it all seemed very unfair. Almost ten years on she's still alive, still fucking evil and likes to engineer a family debacle about once every three months. Hateful woman who I cannot bear and neither can my Mum. My aunt has moved 500 miles to get away from her.

Cut her out if you can, it won't improve if your Dad passes away first.

RunRabbitRunRabbit Sat 18-Mar-17 17:47:19

If you genuinely believe your dad is lovely despite him making you live with a violent alcoholic then you are far more at risk of turning into him than into your mother. Watch out for marrying an alcoholic or abuser yourself.

I hope your dad recovers. Cancer's a bitch.

Eyeslikethesea Sat 18-Mar-17 18:52:30

I don't know if there will be a time I can cut her out. When I was younger I was braver. I ran away from home a lot, drank, drugs, the whole lot. But I stood up to her. Now I'm just about keeping the peace!
I'm married with kids and it puts some strain on my marriage. But only because my husband sees what she is like and gets frustrated with me. Our parenting styles differ wildly because of how I was raised and I will not have an atmosphere in the house. I get scared if he's angry with the kids ( not because he's violent or that I'm scared of him) just because it causes huge anxiety for me.
I didn't realise until I had my second that there was a huge difference in setting healthy boundaries and military type rules.
It's also never occurred to me to find groups where I can discuss this in rl. My siblings and I feel we are the only ones that understand but that's obviously not true.

It's helped posting here for other opinions and outlooks so thank you all very much for that x

RunRabbitRunRabbit Sat 18-Mar-17 20:19:36

You are certainly not alone in this. Plenty of us have worked hard to learn how to be a good parent. You can break the cycle too. There are lots of resources out there to help when you know what to look for.

Eyeslikethesea Sat 18-Mar-17 21:04:20

Thanks run I try hard every single bloody day to not be like her. I also try to be stronger than my dad, but as you probably know, the line is invisible because you've never seen it. Unsure of myself is probably the emotion I've always felt. As I've grown I've built this confident demeanour that's quite difficult to maintain so I don't have many friends that I've made in adult life. My school friends of course know.
Thanks for the link, I'll have a look.
The urge to apologise for being pathetic is strong but I know I'm not. I know that's the way I've been conditioned to believe about myself.

Holland00 Sat 18-Mar-17 21:16:26

I have no relevant experience to give any advice, but didn't want read and run.

So very sorry to hear about your Dad.

RunRabbitRunRabbit Sat 18-Mar-17 21:17:08

Read up about codependency too.

I don't understand why being confident would mean you don't have friends! The opposite is usually true.

pepsiandshirley Sat 18-Mar-17 21:24:27


I have a narc Mum and a Dad who does his best. Plus an older brother who abused me for years.

Finally told the truth about my brother's abuse last week. My Mum was her usual narc self, my Dad has been doing his absolute best.

Found out my Dad had a stroke this morning.

30 years I kept my mouth shut about being abused so that I could keep everyone else happy and within a week of telling I've hurt the only one I cared about.

It sucks and never gets better. I'm so sorry about your Dad's illness, I hope he can recover.

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