The DONM Journey
The DONM Journey - i.e. the Journey of Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers - is an amazing one.
The first emotion that I experienced was euphoria. It was incredible! Suddenly everything made sense. I wasn't crazy!
I recalled those times there was a conflict between what I remembered and what she swore - there was now every
reason to suppose I had been right! I hadn't been misremembering.
All those times I felt she didn't love me - I was right!
All those times my father put my actual needs well behind her wants - that now made sense
It was a time of things falling into place and making sense. And that was massive. Such a gift.
But then, a few weeks later, the pain started.
The hurt started. The 'why?'s. The bereavement, the knowledge that I had no mother,
that in a very real way I had never had a real mother, and above all, that I never would. The
knowledge that I was an emotional orphan, and always had been.
Then came anger. How DARE she treat me like that! How dare she dismiss me so easily and neglect me and not care
for me. How DARE she lie to me! How dare she dismiss my successes and feed off my tragedies. How dare she ignore
and dismiss my darling children!
How dare she tell me it was all my fault. How dare she make me feel like I was never good enough, that who I was
Then the memories started popping up. Things I had forgotten just popped into my head, and I was now seeing them
through the filter of the Narcissism awareness. Remembering how I wore the same vest (undershirt) for months on
end, and it was literally grey. Remembering the times she had left me go hungry because it wasn't yet dinner time.
Remembering eating her toast crusts because she wouldn't make any toast for me - but had done so for herself. So
many painful memories ...
Then sadness. A very deep sadness for that little Danu, that little innocent girl who was not loved, who was
only fodder for her mother's Narcissism and her father's enabling. A sadness for all the love and laughter I hadn't
had. A sadness for the huge, huge loss.
Then liberation. I had already gone No Contact with them, but it was still raw and
hurtful. But now I realised the freedom in it. No longer would I have to dread meeting them, and steel myself for
being iin her presence, and put my personality, my very Self, into storage so I could present a suitably docile
Cardboard Cutout to her.
I no longer had to inflict this misery on my family. We had our first parent-free Christmas ever, this past
year, and it was wonderful. We could relax and enjoy. Friends came and we had laughter and it was all so
gentle. And calm. No clenching of nerves, no being on my guard all the time.
Then I realised how safe I was now. With my parents I had always felt as if I was on the edge of a cliff. One
false step led to horrendous rows and character evisceration and soul annihilation. Now I could relax and just be
me, and on the rare occasions I upset people they just spoke to me about it calmly and respectfully
rather than abusing me, and I owned it and apologised. So no stress.
At this time of writing I have had no contact with my parents for just over six months - and the freedom and
sense of safety just get better and better. (Edited to add in January 2013 - it is now over 4 years and all those
benefits continue to increase.)
There were also periods of self-doubt. A moment or two of worry about whether I was a narcissist or not. And
then the immediate realisation that I'm not. And then worry because narcissists never think they are. Doubts too
about my parenting.
I went through an obsessive stage, reading everything I could get my hands on. This is in part why I've done
this website - to be as full resource for you to do do the same thing. (The other reason is so that you can then
heal from this.) To this end I recommend the following
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