10 Signs You Were Raised By Narcissistic Parents


Narcissistic parents are controlling and manipulative.

One child is the family’s favorite child, while the other child is the scapegoat.

Growing up with a narcissistic parent affects in the long run how children form their own relationships and develop their attachment styles.

Do you suspect that you are the child of narcissistic parents? Or do you want to protect your child against a narcissistic ex-partner?

Read in this article what the most important signals are and get tips on how to deal with or break off contact with narcissistic parents painlessly.

Purpose of this article: First you will get some examples of narcissistic parents, then I will give you 10 signals and finally tips if you want to break with your narcissistic parents.

Do you immediately seek professional help that will prevent you from being a victim of a narcissistic parent any longer? 


Being raised by narcissistic parents

When Simone was growing up, she was not allowed to wash her hair or wear deodorant. She had to go to school with greasy hair.

‘My mother would constantly tell me that I smell bad and that I was dirty and lazy. She did this because she didn’t want guys to notice me.’ I heard this disturbing story from one of my participants who was taking my Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Program.

A narcissistic parent can be verbally aggressive, yelling and belittling.

In general, empathy can help a person control anger. However, a narcissist cannot do this.

A narcissist cannot muster empathy for another; not even for his or her own child.

When the tantrum occurs, it’s like getting a bucket of verbal aggressiveness and physical intimidation.

If you were a victim of humiliating situations and criticism from a narcissistic parent as a child, you may also suffer from low self-esteem and the feeling that you are not loved later in life.

The children of a narcissistic parent see their father’s or mother’s love as conditional. “If you get good grades in school, I’m happy. When you have bad grades, I’ll be furious.”

Or “If you are a captain of the football team I think you are doing well, but if you fail I will be angry and very disappointed in you.”

The long-term consequences of growing up with a narcissistic parent are significant.

The problem with a narcissistic father or mother is that you have been told for years that you are the problem. This makes you constantly doubt yourself.

A child of a narcissist may think they are not worthy of receiving true love.

They may be attracted to partners who demand high standards, humiliate them, or are unable to fully surrender in the relationship.

“If my son doesn’t grow into a professional football player, I can shoot him!” (Note narcissistic father)

“Oh, how beautiful you are. You will become as beautiful as your mama.” (Note narcissistic mother)

My mom’s most frequently used responses to my stories were:



‘I just think that…’

She always feels like she knows better.” (Note child of a narcissistic parent)

10 Signs You Have a Narcissistic Parent

Here are the main signs of being raised by a narcissistic parent:

  1. They lie to you all the time
  2. They have caused you a lot of stress and sadness
  3. She has insulted you regularly
  4. They had a favorite child
  5. They project their bad behavior on you
  6. They react violently to any kind of criticism
  7. They never listened to your feelings
  8. They never respected your boundaries
  9. They liked to present themselves as the perfect family to outsiders
  10. They tried to control you

After reading this list of signs, you may not know whether your mother or father is narcissistic. This doubt is completely normal.

The more signs you recognize, the more likely it is that you were raised by a narcissistic father or mother .

If you are the child of a narcissist (or have a child with a narcissist), you will likely struggle with the following issues:

If you did something “wrong” or against their will – even in the smallest way – they made sure to punish you. For example, they may have intentionally sabotaged something you cared about, broke something from you, or hid something to get back at you.

Your narcissistic mother or father went through your room and private belongings without thinking, sometimes even using what they found against you.

When someone complimented your achievements, your parents jumped right in and turned the attention to themselves. Were you good at horse riding or playing football? Then it was not your fault, but the qualities of your parents!

Your narcissistic mother or father has constantly called you names, humiliated and harassed you. To keep you in check, they used a psychological manipulation tactic known as  gaslighting .

What this means is that they would intentionally drive you crazy, or make you doubt your sanity, to gain the upper hand.

In your family there was also the ‘golden’ child (your brother or sister) and the ‘scapegoat’ child.

In other words, one child was considered perfect and could never do anything wrong. The other child was seen as the black sheep and was the cause of all the trouble!

Prioritize your life

Breaking up with narcissistic parents?

There are children of narcissistic parents who choose to break free from their narcissistic parent.

They recommend that others do the same. This is a way to break through the negative, narcissistic influence.

It is an effective way to get out of this negative spiral. The victim is the child.

Do you recognize yourself in this? Do you recognize yourself in the effects a narcissistic parent can have on his/her child?

Realizing and accepting that you have a narcissistic parent is a long and intensely painful road.

As a child, you continue to crave the love and approval of your narcissistic parent. You won’t get this one, though. This craving is therefore unreasonable.

Woman holding a smiling child

Therefore, superficial contact or no contact with the narcissistic parent can be a healthy, effective and liberating choice. But it is not an easy choice.

What is important here is that you adopt an assertive attitude as a child. You have to learn to set your limits .

Especially when the parent is inappropriate, controlling, manipulative or abusive.

Your parent suffers from a psychological personality disorder. Even with good will, this will not change.

It is important to learn to deal with this or otherwise consciously distance yourself and break with your narcissistic parent. A relationship with a narcissist is incredibly difficult.


They have little to no empathy and are primarily concerned with their own needs. Often they do not recognize the narcissistic qualities in themselves, but point them at others.

Stepping out of the shadow of your narcissistic mother as an adult is difficult, but incredibly important.

Need help with narcissistic parents?

Were you raised by a narcissist? Or do you strongly believe that the mother or father of your children is narcissistic? You are not alone.

In case of serious relatives, enlist the help of a professional to put the past behind you.

Do you need professional support? In that case, my powerful method can help you stand up for yourself and stay in control of your emotions.

I specialize in narcissism. Thanks to my years of experience, my program can help you with your recovery. So that you can move on with your life, despite the sorrow and pain of the past.

 Breaking the power of your parents is necessary to put the past behind you.

You will get a wealth of information and the best tips and techniques for dealing with even the worst cases of narcissism. I recommend that you really think about yourself in this. It is your quest for happiness in life (or that of your children).

PS What are your experiences with narcissistic parents? Leave a comment below. 

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