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One of the greatest obstacles that you will face in the aftermath of your realization that you have been victimized by familial narcissist abuse, is the inability for others to relate to, or identify with such cruel deception. Especially stemming from the unit of a family structure, the notion that people can be entirely cold-hearted and without conscience, seems alien at it’s core.
I want to write about narcissist siblings and how determined they can be to harm you emotionally, psychologically, and financially.
Even within the Psychotherapy community, the effect of abuse from Sociopaths, Narcissists, and other disordered predators, is not fully understood by many. In effect, many times patients are misdiagnosed, leaving the victim feeling helpless and without a clear path to recovery.
It is very difficult for many people to believe that their brothers and sisters have hated them from an early age. Yet, it’s true that when dealing with a sibling who is covert or overt narcissist or socialized sociopath, these narcissist siblings take their schemes and plans very seriously.
They don’t care if you’re part of the family by birth and that you want to grow and enjoy your life or be at peace with yourself. They have every intention to disrupt your adulthood.
In some families there are these poisonous siblings who from the beginning are aggressive personalities. Some of these children are born with a temperament that is more aggressive than other’s. However, the parental input as well makes a distinctive difference as to how an individual turns out.
Like any other toxic bully, you have to disengage from the Narcissist COMPLETELY because if you don’t they will only attack you in unimaginable ways to destroy your COMPLETE integrity as well as your life. They have to win the battle they have with life, people and essentially the WHOLE world! You will ‘seemingly’ end up being the crazy one and the abuser because they will make you out to be everything bad/wrong just like a psycho bully would react to remove any blame from themselves and pass it onto you, basically their back-stabbing and smear campaign. Not a very pretty package at all. Just always remember, you haven’t done ANYTHING wrong to deserve this because they don’t function like other human beings. They don’t even have a clue what liking, caring or LOVING is so they live without it by pretending they know it, but you CAN’T pretend to love especially when you have no morals and it catches up with the Narcissist very quickly because they are so ‘out of control’ and careless.
Greg Zaffuto – Author – From Charm to Harm and Everything else in Between with a Narcissist!
From the beginning, these narcissist siblings behave in a way that is competitive and feel a need to win the affections of the parent, as a way to compete for dominance in the family. Their actions are internalized which can lead to develop a pathology that diminishes the emphatic natural responses that allow for ‘bonding’ within that family or group of individuals.
In my family of origin, there were several poisonous siblings that didn’t care about feelings or what you thought about the injustices that were cast upon others. As long as they ended up with what they selfishly sought to accomplish, then they can walk away without remorse or concern.
What they can’t walk away from is the truth of their actions. Hence, the tactics of the sociopath will be deployed in order to discredit the targeted sibling.
Some of those tactics will/may include:
- Gossip and lying
- Threats of violence
- Controlling and manipulating
Because we had to survive the turmoil in a household that was domineered by a narcissist, some of us remember how our toxic siblings mistreated and abused us, while other’s may not remember the abuse as a child. But, as an adult we can look back at their behavioral and verbal abuses that were cast upon us, and see the malfeasance in their relationship toward us survivors.
You begin to see clearly that they really didn’t care about you at all and that it was always about what they wanted and what they could get. Narcissist siblings do not develop a conscience and are driven to believe that they are entitled to their ‘needs’, irrespective of decency and fairness.
If that sibling is the chosen “Golden” child, the parent places little or no boundaries on their behavior. The child simply gets what he/she wishes or desires, and the narcissist parent can make excuses for that child when they are hurting another sibling that may be deemed to be considered of lessor value than the golden child.
The parent can then get more narcissist supply from the child’s gift, physical attractiveness, having certain artistic abilities, or other redeemable qualities. These types of qualities are exceedingly valued by the parent, over the humanity of empathy and honesty and a deeper caring about other people.
The chosen child is not someone who develops deep feelings about other human beings, including their siblings.
Beginning in my early teen years, I was constantly amazed at how my bother and sisters could get away with just about anything, while many times, I was punished for the smallest ‘offenses’ and blamed for many of the ills within that family structure. In other cases, I was outright blamed for the misdeeds of others, and as I protested with my innocence, was accused of lying trying to shift blame.
This was the time that I was given the role of the scapegoat, which followed me throughout my life and into adulthood. My only refuge in the turbulence of the toxicity of the family was my father. With him, I had a support base that was understanding of the dysfunction and the effects on a non-player of this sickly game of power and control.
For, he too, was emotionally discarded by a narcissist wife.
VIDEO COURTESY OF DR. LINDA MARTINEZ-LEWI used by permission
I slowly learned not to trust or respect two of my siblings with matters of the heart. It was a tough lesson to learn since there was much more cohesion within the family just a year prior to this time, and the sudden change made the situation very confusing. Within the following year, my thoughts were that I was born into the wrong family. Something was off kilter and I couldn’t point to the reasoning behind this sudden drastic change in dynamics.
As the covert narcissistic sibling reaches adulthood, the psychopathology remains unchanged and the victimization of the sibling continues in a cruel, cunning form. Narcissists are often obsessed with money–It is their god, their compass, their identity. They are convinced that any assets belonging to the parents belong to them alone. They spend years plotting how they will pilfer every cent belonging to the parents, leaving the other siblings without a penny. I have witnessed this behavior often; it is ugly and dark.
Dr. Linda Martinez-Lewi Ph.D
There were plenty of noticeable symptoms of dysfunction that became confusing when the siblings in question would turn and become nice, allowing me to lower my guard and to believe that they had changed and could now be trusted.
What I soon discovered would be more betrayal and accusations cast my way as soon as I lowered my defenses. And this became a life-long pattern of wanting to trust my brother and sisters and to be accepted by them as a person and not as property. It was a painful emotional game of hot/cold that was never reconciled.
With a vision as clear as crystal the realization that these siblings could never be counted on, or accepted by them as whole, would be tantamount the recent discovery of very treacherous maneuverings since my breaking the “no contact” rule that I imposed on myself years earlier.
Somewhere in their early years, these siblings developed a pathological envy that had affected them deeply within their psyche, and they realize that they are hollow inside; that there is no defining human character traits of compassion, empathy, or conscience within them. These feelings of emptiness are hidden deep within and not acknowledged, and they have a pathological need to destroy and reduce the healthy sibling(s) as a way to make themselves feel the superiority that they lack.
If you have a narcissist or socialized sociopath as a brother or sister, as time advances and you grow to become an adult, it can be difficult to have any contact with them. Most communications, if any, are done from a distance which is needed for your own self-protection, as the toxicity of these sociopath siblings becomes an unbearable and gut-wrenching experience.
While I can’t speak for anyone other than myself in this kind of situation, the realization that you were of no value to the sociopath narcissist from the beginning is in itself, a harrowing mental absurdity that will redfine your reality. You see that your relationship as a trusted brother and sisters was all a lie and was never real.
If you have identified them a such, and publicly or privately exposed them for their lifelong betrayals, well, let the fireworks begin. You will undoubtedly regret your decision to expose the sociopath narcissist, as they will launch into a destructive smear campaign against the truth, leaving you in a wake of turmoil and character shaming.
Undoubtedly, the sickest of their con maneuverings was what I uncovered by asking questions and researching court documents. Many crimes were committed and are continued to be covered up involving the theft of an estate long before my mother actually died. Her death is shrouded in secrecy, also, allegedly from a conspiracy of silence.
Depending on where they may be on the spectrum of personality disorders, it may not be advisable to expose them if they are of the malignant narcissist and/or sociopath group. It could be too dangerous to your safety and health, as they are without remorse or conscience and will stop at nothing in order to exact revenge. History is littered with the anti-social and socialized sociopaths and malignant narcissists committing crimes by proxy as a way to silence forever, any threat to their adversaries.
However, stick to your convictions and know that you hold the truth, and continue to holler from the rooftops, then possibly, you may get a single person to listen, and then another.
After you had been deceived and calculated against for a lifetime, you may want to seek revenge, but do not do so. To seek revenge would be to lower your scruples to match that of the narcissist. And since they are experts at dirty fighting, you will probably never win against the lifelong expertise of the ‘win at all cost’ tactics that they will undoubtedly employ.
The sociopath or narcissist has everything to lose by exposure and rejection from their harum or cult of followers, and will con and manipulate you and others against you in order to silence you forever.
Being raised in the shadow of sadistic narcissists and socialized sociopath brothers and/or sisters, it is very important as adults to do everything necessary to be healed from the mind fuck that you’ve endured. The one positive that comes from this kind of environment is that you are ‘wide awake’ to the history and the dirty secrets that they so need to repress.
Unfortunately, you have been cast into a cauldron of dysfunction which allowed for the systemic abuse to occur in the first place. So, bear in mind that you never had a loving family and any reference to it was nothing but ingrained duty that was bound by blood.
Going “no contact” is and will be your saving grace to save your soul, your sanity, and possibly your life. You shouldn’t be in a state of turmoil simply because of social norms dictate that you be connected to ‘family’. It’s a sad reality, I know. It’s even sadder when you see that the predator is rewarded and the innocent are condemned to obscurity, stripped of dignity and resources.
The family dynamics that is controlled by a socialized sociopath or narcissist is not a normal and healthy family. The dysfunction is systemic and everyone and anyone that does not follow the assigned roles will become ostracized within that group. This holds true in social groups as well.
If you ever had the misfortune of awakening to this horror, it helps to remember that you deserve to heal and to recover from these traumas and cruelties that were imposed on you by Machiavellian manipulations.
For many narcissists, siblings are a vital component of narcissistic supply, often due to your position of vulnerability and powerlessness as a child, and you become the target of your brother or sister’s desperate and insatiable search for psychological cohesion and consolidation of their disordered beliefs. As such, your sibling may go to great lengths to assert their superiority over you and damage your sense of self to fortify their own; you may be subjected to verbal abuse, belittling, ridicule, and humiliation, both public and private. Many describe their childhood as one of being a “verbal punching bag” for their brother or sister, cruelty which often remains hidden to parents as the narcissistic child endeavours to maintain the appearance of perfection to authority figures. Your sibling may constantly demand your attention and admiration and react with outrage if you do not respond as they desire, instilling a deep belief that you are responsible for their emotional well-being. In some cases, the narcissist may even use physical or sexual violence against you.
Several years ago I made this discovery, and the first person I related the history to ended up being a pastor in a small evangelical church. Whether it be by divine occurrence or fate, he was aware of familial narcissist abuses, having been traumatized, himself, as a child. Speaking from experience, his advice to me was “you’re going to need therapy”.
It’s a long and winding road if you’ve grown up around this type of sibling, and it’s very possible to recover and thrive from the nightmarish traumas that you’ve endured.
Other recommendations would be to take a close look at your remaining friends and close relationships and make any changes needed. There may be only a couple of people left that you can trust and feel at ease around, but it’s important to surround yourself with people of good character, anyway.
Above all, feel blessed that you’ve come out of a horrendous environment of having socialized sociopath or narcissist siblings that had no love for you from the beginning. You can and will heal from the abuse within time and with effort, and be strong in knowing that while you can recover, they will always be disturbed, psychologically.
You are emphatic and have a great strength inside of you, and you have a beautiful heart that fuels their envy. Mostly, you hold the truth.