Survivors of Narcissistic Mothers: FAQs
Amanda Robins Psychotherapy Blog
by Amanda Robins
3d ago
As someone who works almost exclusively with adult children of narcissistic mothers, I get asked a lot of questions. Here are some of the most common. What is Narcissism? Narcissism is an ongoing (pervasive) pattern of behaviours (traits) which can include: an excessive sense of self-importance, a need for admiration, and a lack of empathy for others. It can manifest in various ways, including grandiosity, a sense of entitlement, and a preoccupation with fantasies of success, power, brilliance, or beauty. Narcissism exists on a spectrum; while some level of self-focus is normal and healthy, ex ..read more
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Is Your Mother a Narcissist? 10 Signs You Need to Know
Amanda Robins Psychotherapy Blog
by Amanda Robins
2w ago
NARCISSISTIC MOTHER SIGNS Top ten signs your mother might be a narcissist. She’s controlling. She wants to inset herself in all aspects of your life and does not respect your boundaries or your rights to privacy. Trying to assert yourself results in anger, rejection and hostility. She doesn’t appreciate your attempts to individuate as it means you are going to be less available to serve her needs. Does she get angry when you disagree or don’t want to do what she wants you to do? Does she try to make you feel guilty for having separate interests, hobbies, desires and opinions? She can’t o ..read more
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Shame and Narcissism
Amanda Robins Psychotherapy Blog
by Amanda Robins
2w ago
Its not very fashionable. Its something we don't feel comfortable talking about - and we often don't recognise it. Most of us don't even want to admit to experiencing it. It can make us feel powerless, isolated and alone. The affects associated with shame can flood our bodies with powerful chemicals. We want to run and hide. In Understanding and Treating Chronic Shame, social worker and psychotherapist  Patricia DeYoung argues that shame often lies at the heart of mental illness. It’s mostly unavailable to conscious thought and to words. We often don't know or understand our shame experie ..read more
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The Dark Triad
Amanda Robins Psychotherapy Blog
by Amanda Robins
3w ago
Carol didn’t look like a victim. A smart professional woman with three children, she wasn’t someone who would stand out as being vulnerable. And yet she was. When I first met her, she was reeling from the messy, overwhelming and distressing fallout of a lengthy battle with her ex, David. At times, I wondered how she had stayed so long. But I’ve learned through this work that abuse is complex and that leaving isn’t always an option. Victim survivors come from all strata of society, all backgrounds and all circumstances and there often aren’t any easy answers - for any of us. As I got to know Ca ..read more
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Why are Narcissists So Attractive?
Amanda Robins Psychotherapy Blog
by Amanda Robins
7M ago
You’ve done all the work. You’ve been there & done that. You’ve come to know yourself and your past, but you still can’t resist those delicious grandiose men. Like an incredibly rich black forest gateaux, they look great, taste amazing, but after a while the glamour palls. After a few weeks of chocolate and cream, you crave a good old fashioned chicken salad with freekeh. But why, oh why do you still find yourself looking into the refridgerated shelves, staring longingly at the layers of dark chocolate, cream and sour cherries. Narcissism researchers Brunell and Campbell liken having a rel ..read more
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Why Self-Compassion is Important for Daughters of Narcissists
Amanda Robins Psychotherapy Blog
by Amanda Robins
7M ago
I was shocked. My client was attractive, successful, in a good marriage with three beautiful children, but she hated herself. She felt she couldn’t do anything right. She harangued herself with a barrage of self-criticism and judgement that would deaden the most sanguine optimist. Everywhere she went, a continuous commentary accompanied her saying she was no good, and she would never amount to anything. It was exhausting. And demoralising. Every time she tried something new, made a mistake or even just tried to live a normal life…the voice would be there telling her the same depressing story ..read more
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A Narcissistic Nightmare
Amanda Robins Psychotherapy Blog
by Amanda Robins
7M ago
We all know that narcissists are a nightmare - but was that really meant literally? When I first left my narcissistic home (yes, I know, congratulations to me), I thought YAY! That's it. Game over. No more narcissistic mom. How naive I was. At the risk of making myself sound like a loser, I went from share house to share house, making enemies (and finding them) and skating close to homelessness and unemployment.  I was pretty unstable. It took me a looooong, loooong time to even recognise what was going on. I had moved interstate, but I had taken my narcissistic mother with me.....in ..read more
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A Dysfunctional Family Christmas
Amanda Robins Psychotherapy Blog
by Amanda Robins
8M ago
Lessons from Gremlins Everyone forgets that Gremlins is a Christmas movie. I can understand why. Who wouldn’t rather watch Jimmy Stewart running around Bedford Falls wishing everyone a Merry Merry and helping Clarence get his wings. But for me, Gremlins is the more appropriate Yuletide watch. I love the sly, campy humour and unsubtle debunking of Christmas traditions. But in terms of anti-christmas spirit, my favourite scene is the one where Kate (Phoebe Cates) tells us why she hates the holiday season. Her father’s fatal chimney abseil leaves the family with understandably mixed feelings ..read more
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Why Do People Stay with Narcissists?
Amanda Robins Psychotherapy Blog
by Amanda Robins
1y ago
It doesn’t make any sense right? Unfortunately there are any number of reasons why people stay in abusive relationships. A relationship with a narcissist can come at the cost of your sense of self, but it can also be hard to leave. Many of the reasons have to do with the victim’s circumstances, including lack of resources (for example financial resources) having young children, lack of access to employment or housing, language barriers, lack of social support or family/cultural or social pressure. But in narcissistic relationships, the narcissist’s “qualities”, behaviours or traits add to the ..read more
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Do Narcissists Have High self-Esteem?
Amanda Robins Psychotherapy Blog
by Amanda Robins
1y ago
Well, this is a biggie. When I was studying social work, many moons ago, I helped one of the presenters in a group session talking about self-esteem. The presenter handily mapped out a continuum of self-esteem levels where narcissists were sitting pretty at the high end of the spectrum. But is that actually true? Research on narcissism is a somewhat fraught area, mainly because narcissists don’t always present their vulnerable side, and - shock horror - don’t always tell the truth, including when undertaking psychological tests (well, that probably doesn’t differentiate them from the rest of t ..read more
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