Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers: Accepting The Limitations Of My Mom
How Do I Know If I Have Accepted My Mother’s Limitations?
In the book “Will I Ever Be Good Enough?” By Karyl McBride, the answer to this question is found in how one responds to the following:
- Do I continue to wish and hope that my mother will be different each time I talk to her?
- Do I continue to have expectations of my mother?
- Have I accepted my mother for who she is?
- Am I expecting someone else to meet my childlike needs because I have given up on my mother?
- Do I continue to try to get my childlike needs met in relationships instead of relying on myself?
These questions help to determine where one is at in the process of acceptance. Of all the stages of grief, I continue to struggle in this place. I’ve accepted that things are toxic and broken between my mom and I. What I’ve been unwilling to accept is the idea that it has to stay that way. Does the longing for safe, healthy connection ever disappear? Why do I keep circling back to this same thought process?
What Is The Final Word In My Story?
Last night I watched The Little Mermaid. As Ariel sang, “I wish I could be part of that world…” I felt the words in a very real way. The lyrics resonated because of my own hunger to know what it’s like “above the water.” The world I long to experience is the one where my mom is an active, loving part of my life. What daughter wouldn’t want that? If I’m gut-level honest, I’m not ready to believe that mother-loss, mother-absence and mother-abandonment are the final words in my story.
Choosing To Accept Her Even Though She Is Unable To Accept Me
McBride writes that narcissism is a spectrum disorder. The further one falls along that line, the less likely they are to seek help. Apart from genuine help, there is no confronting of trauma or dealing with root issues. As I’m learning more about this, I’ve realized that understanding the battle my mom faces, greatly helps with identifying her limitations. The more intentional I can be about accepting that piece of the equation, the easier it is to give myself more of what my mother couldn’t.
I can choose to accept her, where she’s at, even though she is unable to accept me. Perhaps in doing so, there is “a whole new world” to experience; a final word in the story that’s just not written yet.
Where are you at in the process of accepting your mother’s limitations?