Healing becomes possible when all parties in a relationship come to see each other as co-creators of the relationship rather then attacker, and victim.
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Breaking Generational Curses ( 19:32:49 FriAug 15 2003 ) |
In my self-discovery and healing process, I was meditating on bits and pieces of my own childhood memories last night. Remembering can be very painful at times and a lot easier to understand now than back then. It is graduatlly becoming clearer to me that while I have been looking at my (NPD) husband and how others may have introduced me to narcissism that actually my own upbringing may have been a precursor without my knowledge.
I reflected on the many stories my dad told me about his growing up poor in a small rural town as an only child reared by his grandparents (strict, religious authoritarians). His parents divorced when he was a toddler, father estranged and mother deserted him to live the "high-life" in another state. He confessed that he was plagued with feelings of shame that his mother and father had abandoned him to live as an outsider. Even though his mother sent money and new clothes for him he was made to wear old, oversized clothes to school and fight for position with cousins who teased him becaues he had no immediate family...Dysfunctional at best.
My dad raised my siblings and me by the only standards he had ever known: the father is the head of the family, women are submissive to men, children are his possessions, children should be obedient without being allowed to express their emotions, big boys don't cry, family affairs are never discussed outside the family, etc. Being the oldest and a daughter may have made it easier on me than if I had been a son. I was allowed (and expected) to show my emotions.
I am a firm believer that "knowledge is power". What was meant to "kill, steal and destroy" me has only strengthened me with the power to break the "generational curse" from being passed on due to the lack of knowledge. I view my (and other) children differently and communicate with them in healthier ways. Now, I will continue to learn so I can plant (healthy) seeds in my children and hopefully reap "good fruit". while influencing others.
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Re: Breaking Generational Curses ( 21:23:11 WedAug 20 2003 ) |
Hope all is going well.
In my experience, joint therapy works best if the parties take the attitude: "Our relationship is broken and we want to fix it", as opposed to: "My spouse/myself is broken - you fix it.".
A good therapist will gently guide and correct either party if their thinking is muddled or their behavior off. A good therapist will help you BOTH uncover wrong-headed thinking patterns and help you establish good "rules" for communication and interaction, and even help guide you through the more frightening passages of emotional intimacy (over time).
In my case, with my husband, this worked wonders. NPD was never mentioned - and truly, I think it's irrelevant...what matters to me is not whether he has a PD, but rather how he treat/interacts with me and how he expresses his feelings, both positive and negative. AND how I do the same for him. (I think he DOES have NPD, and learning about it has certainly helped me understand him better, but labels are not really necessary for healing).
I will say that in our therapist DID have him look hard at the similarities and relationships between his reactions to/treatment of me and his experiences growing up, which were pretty awful. At our last session she talked about his relationship with his father, commenting "So with all that anger already there, would it be fair to say that (Athena) never had a chance?" - with which he agreed.
I feel very hopeful for you because you are entering this joint therapy. After all, NPD is about damaged and damaging relationships (in the visible to others sense) - so having a little relationship coaching can't hurt if the therapist is good and the parties really invested.
My husband has his own therapist, in addition. I think she's helpful, but the biggest positive changes in his behavior with me have come on the heels of the joint therapy experience. Can't say enough good things about it!
Keep us posted -
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