Out of the FOG

Coping with Personality Disorders => Dealing with PD Parents => Topic started by: Court1993 on June 24, 2021, 08:58:38 PM

Title: PD Dad, TW ABUSE, scared I have it too
Post by: Court1993 on June 24, 2021, 08:58:38 PM
Hi all, itís my first post here after my psych recommended this site to me, I am pretty upset and feel like my upbringing has ruined my hope to be a mentally sound adult.

My dad has a PD, he used to do things to make me cry and wouldnít stop being nasty until Iíd cry, heíd take me into unsafe situations to watch my reactions, he would take me into big surf and waves as a child and then leave me there panicking for my life and then would come and save me, he cut my name into his body when I was 5, he would degrade and be nasty to me, he was unpredictable and scared me constantly, due to this Iíve never known how to act as my life was pleasing my father otherwise Iíd be terrified of what to expect, now I feel like I donít even know how I am.

I have seen behaviours in myself that scare me so much to think I could be BPD OR NPD, even aspd. I feel uncomfortable when things are calm so will start drama to feel ease again, I have had anxiety attacks when my partner goes out or goes away, I do things for attention and have lied about my life to fit in with people, sometimes I feel like Iím a totally different person.

Lately during therapy Iím so upset that I could have been a normal person if it wasnít for the trauma growing up, now I feel ruined for life and on top of that I just had a son who I love more than anything and now I have this fear he will grow up feeling the same way about me and think Iím this disordered person. I love my son and all I want to do is make him happy and have a healthy relationship. Worried thereís no hope for me, Iím still very much dedicating my life to keep my father happy and feel I can never get free!
Title: Re: PD Dad, TW ABUSE, scared I have it too
Post by: Cat of the Canals on June 24, 2021, 11:30:25 PM
Welcome to the board, Court1993. I'm so sorry to hear the terrible abuse you've experienced. It sounds truly awful.

As far as seeing these behaviors in yourself, that doesn't necessarily mean you have a PD. It is quite common for those of us raised by PD parents to pick up some of their traits, often without even realizing it. (We call them FLEAs.) Children are like sponges, after all, picking up habits and behaviors through observation. Our parents' behavior is inherently "normalized" to some degree. It's taken me decades to recognize some of the dysfunction in my own family.

It is also not uncommon for adult children of PDs to see these behaviors in themselves and wonder, "Oh no. Do I have a PD, too?" It's far from scientific, but having that sense of awareness about yourself is a pretty good sign that you don't have a PD. Will you have to work hard to unlearn some of these behaviors? Probably. But it sounds like you have a lot of things in your life worth fighting for.
Title: Re: PD Dad, TW ABUSE, scared I have it too
Post by: desertpine on June 28, 2021, 08:51:03 PM
Welcome! Just want to let you know that I hear how scared you feel. That totally makes sense given what you have been though.
This is a supportive place and there are so many resources on this site!  Sounds like you have some behaviors that you'd like to change and that you'd like to learn some skills in managing anxiety. That's ok! You are taking steps - seeing a professional, doing some self-reflecting, reaching out for support and resources, posting on here.
Those are signs of resiliency, insight, motivation, and courage in my book.   :applause:
Title: Re: PD Dad, TW ABUSE, scared I have it too
Post by: nanotech on July 03, 2021, 04:40:33 PM
Whatever your dad did to you, do the opposite with your beautiful son.
Give your son his voice early- be a great listener-so he can talk his feelings Commmunication is the key to a healthy relationship.
Have some healthy boundaries with your son where needed though. Itís how they learn. So donít Ďditchí bring a parent out of worry you may emulate your dad. Try to trust yourself more.
Iím feeling that youíve possibly taken on the responsibility for the abuse you suffered? Because your dad never did? Look Iím not a therapist, but you were abused and you are totally and utterly blameless.
I may be off on a tangent there so apologies if I am. Itís just Iím feeling that you blame yourself somehow. Or is it that you donít feel you deserve your lovely, beautiful son?  YOU DO.
Your dad can no longer abuse you. so donít let your past ruin your future.
 They program us from an early age to feel that we deserve bad things to happen to us. This means that when wonderful things happen we sometimes start to second guess our right to them.
Itíll be fine!
The very fact that you are fearful that you may be like your dad suggests to me that you arenít. Narcissists are never ever self insightful or self critical.
Title: Re: PD Dad, TW ABUSE, scared I have it too
Post by: Sneezy on July 03, 2021, 05:21:08 PM
I am pretty upset and feel like my upbringing has ruined my hope to be a mentally sound adult.
Please try not to believe this.  Think about it - we all know siblings who were raised by the same parents in the same way and yet turned out vastly different.  Upbringing has an effect, but it's not wholly determinative of who you become. 

You are self-aware enough to question yourself, you have an overwhelming love for your son, you are in therapy - it sounds to me like you are a mature and capable adult (who certainly has some things you want to work on), but you are on a good path.

This forum is a great place to ask questions and learn.  Explore the whole site.  Utilize the toolbox.  And welcome  :)
Title: Re: PD Dad, TW ABUSE, scared I have it too
Post by: JustKathy on July 05, 2021, 06:41:50 PM
Hi Court,

I understand how you feel, and for what it's worth, I think it's pretty normal. When I was younger I would find myself repeating some of the habits my Nmother had and would become hysterical, thinking I had somehow inherited her illness, that it was genetic. It is scary when you have those thoughts.

But here's the thing. If you had a PD, the last thing you'd do is see a therapist about it, or come to a forum like this one seeking help. My mother had NPD, and by nature of that disorder thought she was perfect. People with PDs don't see that they have a problem and subsequently never seek help. In my humble opinion, having so much awareness of PD behavior and such a strong desire to prevent it in yourself means that you're just fine.

As for the "fleas," I think most of us end up with some of our parents' behaviors. It's probably impossible to be raised by a PD parent and not pick up some of their habits, but once you're conscious of those habits they can be worked on.

Your psych was wise to recommend this forum. It really does help to talk to others who have been in the same place. Welcome! :)