Being a parent means that you need to make some sacrifices in order to ensure that your child grows up in a loving and supportive environment. However, this doesn’t mean that all parents are always thinking of their child’s well-being, as in some cases, there can be narcissistic parents.
What is narcissistic parenting?
First, let’s define what narcissistic parenting is. Narcissism by itself, means being extremely self-centered, having insecurities, and even having difficulties in establishing relationships with people. This means that narcissistic parents don’t care much for their children’s well-being, and even have a harder time understanding what being a parent really means.
A narcissistic parent doesn’t really care much for the well-being of their children. All that matters to them is using their own children in order to make their own dreams come true. They do this by completely controlling every aspect of their child’s life, and preventing their child from making decisions themselves.
Narcissistic parenting is the exact opposite of what good parenting is, and it’s important for moms and dads to know if they have some habits that are common among narcissistic parents.
Selfishness and self-centeredness
Narcissistic parents only think of themselves, even if they already have kids. Some narcissistic parents might seem like good parent at first glance, since you can see them buying their kids the best clothes, toys, and enrolling them in the best schools.
But for narcissistic parents, this is a means for them to show everyone else that they’re ‘good’ parents. They’re not doing it because they want their child to be happy, or to have a good education, they’re only doing it so that they can brag about how smart their child is.
Narcissistic parents force their own interests on their children, such as forcing their child to become a doctor or a lawyer against the child’s wishes, just because they want to have a child that they can brag about.
Jealousy and controlling behavior
Another trait that narcissistic parents have is jealousy. Narcissistic parents are overly jealous of their children’s attention and affection.
Narcissistic parents want to be in control of their children forever, even if their child is already married and has their own family. This causes a lot of problems since the child stops learning how to be independent because they’re so used to their parents dictating what they need to do.
Narcissistic parents are masters of manipulating their children. They use threats, punishment, and even their child’s love in order to force their children to do as they say.
They usually make their child feel guilty, and can sometimes blame or shame their children to force them to follow what they want. They also use the words “If you are a good son/daughter then you would do this for me” in order to make their kids submissive.
In some cases, they also pressure their child into performing by comparing them to their siblings.
Favoritism and neglect
Narcissistic parents always have a favorite child. That’s the child who they think always follows what they say, and always does what they want. They then shower that child with affection since they think that he or she is better than the other siblings.
This type of behavior causes the other children to feel neglected and unloved, and oftentimes they lash out against their parents by rebelling, which causes an even further rift within the family.
Some narcissistic parents can also be workaholics, since they’re too focused on pursuing their own interests and constantly neglect the needs of their kids and their family.
How can it be avoided?
The important thing for parents to know is to always think of their children’s needs first. While parents don’t need to sacrifice everything that they have in order to provide for their kids, parents do have to make some sacrifices and learn to put their children’s needs first before their own.
Parents also need to listen to their kids in order to better understand their likes, dislikes, and their personal interests. That way, they can support their child’s passion in life, even if it might not be what they planned for their child to do.
It’s also important for parents to know that it’s okay for their kids to make mistakes and sometimes fail in life. That’s how their children will learn. While it’s great to see your kids having success and being achievers, there’s nothing wrong with them still trying to figure things out, so long as they know where they’re headed.
Parents should also learn to step back a bit, and let their kids be in control of their own lives. Parents should act as guides and teach their children right from wrong. Being to controlling and manipulative only represses their child’s development and makes their child feel helpless.
At the end of the day, the most important thing is for your child to grow up well, and learn all of the things that would help them become successful in life, whichever path they choose for themselves.
READ: What is “New Old-Fashioned Parenting,” and would it work for your kids?