Making decisions after narcissistic childhood

I have always struggled with making decisions. Do I want a ham or cheese sandwich, which shoes should I buy etc etc. I would pin it down to my commitment fear, but I think the issue is deeper than this. I found a very telling article on narcissism here (thanks to manillascissor) and it got me thinking that great deal of my difficulties in decision making can be explained by the fact that I do not know who I am. Or even if I know who I am I have no confidence in who I am.

Thanks to aforementioned article and some other resources I am aware of how narcissistic parents dominate the household. Their needs get the most attention, their moods define the atmosphere and you…..well, you become in a way a shadow of the parent. You are not your own person and you also get the feeling that being your own person is dangerous. It is not safe to do your own thinking- what if mommy gets angry?

So there you are. Your identity has been beaten down, because it was not useful for narcissistic parent to allow you to develop your own sense of self. Even if this sense of self is there, somewhere deep down, you really do not dare to express it because you are buying into it being dangerous. That probably does not create a good ground for any potential independent thinking, trust in your own abilities or even a knowledge on what you actually desire.

This is also the reason why I am quite skeptical about standard decision-making tools working for the victims of narcissistic abuse- how can you set any goals or make any plus and minus lists if you do not have a clue who you are as a person? So obviously, for making good decisions, someone with the history of narcissistic abuse, needs to go through lengthy process of self-identification.


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