I’m finally starting to get the strength together to write about my experiences with narcissistic abuse. To open the first of a series of blogs that will focus on this, my healing and recovery journey and what I’ve learnt about narcissistic abuse, I have changed the opening quote from the 2019 film “Rocketman” which is based on the life of Sir Elton John.
Lisa: How long is this going to take?
Counsellor: That’s really up to you…
Lisa: Alright then. I know how this bit goes. My name is Lisa Serafina Ventura, and I’m a narcissistic abuse survivor. I’m healing and recovering from a lifetime of trauma from narcissistic abuse at the hands of my parents, some so-called now ex-friends, work colleagues and business colleagues. I also have complex PTSD, anxiety, depression, and I struggle daily with my mental health. I’ve been trying to mould myself into someone I’m not to cope with the abuse and as a survival mechanism from it.
Counsellor: Why are you here now?
Lisa: I’m here because I want to get better.
Counsellor: What were you like as a child Lisa?
Lisa: As a child….
As a child I felt invisible. As a child I felt that I had to do whatever it took to ensure that my parents were both happy. If that meant not focusing on my own needs and wants, then so be it. From a very young age I knew that to please my parents I had to be something I wasn’t. I came up with a fantasy world to live in as a protection mechanism from not getting what I needed from my parents.
I got things from my parents, lots of things. I had toys galore and everything I could have ever wanted in that regard. But I was always told to toe the line, to fall into place, to do what was expected of me, and my Mum’s favourite line when I was little was, “You’ll never have another little mother so you must make sure you look after me.” I heard that from her a lot.
My mother is a covert narcissist, and my father is a grandiose narcissist. I’ll cover more about them in another blog soon.
I grew up extremely quickly, I was allowed to watch films that no child should have ever been allowed to watch such as “The Omen”, “Jaws” and “Halloween”. My parents justified it by saying, “it is okay for her to watch those things, she is very grown up for her age.” But doing so robbed me of my childhood. By the age of 8 I was reading the novels of Harold Robbins. For anyone who knows of this author, his books are raw, gritty and focus on drug use with lots of sex and swearing thrown in for good measure. I felt so grown up reading those books, but I now know that doing so also robbed me of my childhood. I was a mini adult in my parents’ eyes, not a child, and I was expected to behave like an adult, even when I was a child.
No matter what I did I felt that it wasn’t enough for my parents. They moulded me into mini versions of them complete with all their neuroses and toxic beliefs and thoughts. But I didn’t realise this until I was 48 years old. My husband tried to warn me for years that their behaviour towards me wasn’t right, that their overprotectiveness and overbearing nature wasn’t normal, but I didn’t listen to him. I wish I had.
This is the first of my blogs on narcissistic abuse and recovering from it, and I realise it is a bit haphazard and doesn’t make a lot of sense now. As I write more, and as I process more of what happened to me at the hands of narcissists, I hope that my words will make more sense.
Please bear with me, just writing this blog took a lot out of me today, so I need to do this bit by bit and in stages.
More to come soon…..