She NEVER stops talking!

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Writingthepain

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She NEVER stops talking!
« on: May 08, 2018, 09:14:37 AM »
Hi its been a while, my NPD mum has been better but its getting to me currently that she never stops talking, yap yap yap all day. My mum even talks in her sleep! And the thing is she doesn't talk about things that might interest  the person shes talking to, she doesn't seem to notice that the other person has no interest in what shes saying, and she talks at the person- denying them the ability to say anything or to engage in the conversation at all!
this has contributed to multiple friendship breakdowns over the years and currently i'm afraid its going to destroy our friendship with our neighbours who we are both close to.
I've tried pointing out to my mum that in normal conversation you need to be aware if people aren't interested in what you're saying and modify your conversation accordingly, but her reply is "so i'm not allowed to talk about things that interest me!? is that it!?"
I call it verbal dribbling and no one else can get a word in edgewise when she's busy dribbling on about her future plans, her latest diet fad, the latest health scam/scare she's found out about.
on occasion she's even left one of our friends standing on the doorstep in the rain for five minutes because she was too busy talking to another friend inside! Her story was more important than the person getting soaked outside!!
I do try to curtail her verbal dribbling and turn the conversation back to other people, but i'll get glared at by her at the time for doing this and later told off! Apparently thats rude and i'm not showing her respect(!)

Ideas? Suggestions please? What can i do?

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daughter

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Re: She NEVER stops talking!
« Reply #1 on: May 08, 2018, 10:05:02 AM »
I eventually dealt with my NBM's self-centered monologues by giving myself a time-limitation (15 minutes max phone-calls) on my participation, by firm redirection on her topics that were of no interest or relevance to me (gossip about her friends' adult children), limiting my own topics to banal subjects, and accepting that NBM's conversations were about expressing her thoughts and expectations in a self-centered single-focus manner of "me, me, me!".  I did a lot of "mental humming" to distract myself during our conversations.  You can't "fix" your mother, but you can train yourself to "tune her out".

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LSK1999

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Re: She NEVER stops talking!
« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2018, 10:09:56 AM »
Hi its been a while, my NPD mum has been better but its getting to me currently that she never stops talking, yap yap yap all day.

Ideas? Suggestions please? What can i do?

I hate to break this new to you, and I say this with the utmost respect for you and your situation because I lived your situation for a very long time, but there is absolutely nothing you can ever do to change her behavior. My NPD mother never stops either. It's always doom and gloom, all about her horrible problems (She's always the Martyr and Victim), quite honestly I spent years being humiliated by her behavior and feeling that I was somehow responsible for changing it. I noticed that you referred to you and your mother as a we. I am not an expert, but to me that indicates that you are in a very enmeshed relationship with your mother. I know from experience my mother and I were a we for most of my adult life. This is extremely hard to accept I know, but you have to realize there is a you, and you are not responsible for the behavior of any one else. Believe me when I tell you, other people can differentiate between you and your mother and they do not blame you for her behavior in any way shape or form so don't waste your time worrying about it.

Recognize also that if your mother is NPD she has seriously crossed your boundaries, probably most of your life. Don't worry about her behavior, worry about you and taking care of yourself. As far as the rambling on and on about herself, that will never, ever, ever, ever end. It is a hallmark of NPD, they either cannot or will not care for anyone other than themselves. They are not capable of it. I could be collapsed on the floor in front of my mother writhing in pain and she would tell me how the week before she had a horrible fall. Their behavior is that of a child, and not a polite one and that. The best advice I can give is try to focus on finding friends and allies that are yours and yours alone. I wish someone had told me decades ago I wasn't required to share every part of my life with my mother. Bless you and good luck to you.

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Writingthepain

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Re: She NEVER stops talking!
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2018, 10:21:43 AM »
Thanks for your reply, i live with my mother as she is my carer, so i don't have the luxury of keeping her at bay over the phone. I have developed the ability to tune her out and just nod or say "uh huh" when required. I once timed her and she talked for 1hr and 25 mins without requiring or asking for any response from me(!)

My concern is her interactions with our friends/neighbours. I'm afraid she will destroy that friendship and truth be told i have very few friends or ability to get out of the house to see them. already i've caught looks of irritation on their faces when she is "holding court and monologuing". When she was in her 20s she and a group of friends used to spend a lot of time together socialising, until they got fed up with her monopolising the conversation, so they tried teasing her about it.... BIG MISTAKE! she came home furious! I remember my father trying to explain to her what their friends were objecting to but my mothers response was " well they're just jealous because i'm such a bubbly talkative character!"... and... " so i've got to just sit there have i?! Just sit there silent and not say anything!!??!" Soon afterwards my parents stopped socialising with those friends and there started a long history of friendships that die...

I'm also studying a correspondence course and i've learnt that to  announce that i'm going to spend the morning studying is like waving a red flag to a bull. Mum will either A) talk incessantly or B) talk to herself " ok so i'm just going to make a cup of tea.... put kettle on.... teabag..... then i'll read that art book.... i ought to call my sister too..." blah blah blah but of course i can't complain about that because shes only talking to herself not to me(!)

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LSK1999

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Re: She NEVER stops talking!
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2018, 11:08:13 AM »
Thanks for your reply, i live with my mother as she is my carer, so i don't have the luxury of keeping her at bay over the phone. I have developed the ability to tune her out and just nod or say "uh huh" when required. I once timed her and she talked for 1hr and 25 mins without requiring or asking for any response from me(!)

My concern is her interactions with our friends/neighbours. I'm afraid she will destroy that friendship and truth be told i have very few friends or ability to get out of the house to see them. already i've caught looks of irritation on their faces when she is "holding court and monologuing". When she was in her 20s she and a group of friends used to spend a lot of time together socialising, until they got fed up with her monopolising the conversation, so they tried teasing her about it.... BIG MISTAKE! she came home furious! I remember my father trying to explain to her what their friends were objecting to but my mothers response was " well they're just jealous because i'm such a bubbly talkative character!"... and... " so i've got to just sit there have i?! Just sit there silent and not say anything!!??!" Soon afterwards my parents stopped socialising with those friends and there started a long history of friendships that die...

I'm also studying a correspondence course and i've learnt that to  announce that i'm going to spend the morning studying is like waving a red flag to a bull. Mum will either A) talk incessantly or B) talk to herself " ok so i'm just going to make a cup of tea.... put kettle on.... teabag..... then i'll read that art book.... i ought to call my sister too..." blah blah blah but of course i can't complain about that because shes only talking to herself not to me(!)
I am so sorry I forget how lucky I am to be out of that situation and I know leaving or breaking free is not always an option. I lived with my mother for years and I had to rely on her totally for a number of them. I was truly blessed to be able to meet a good man and end up in a very close and loving relationship with him. (Despite my mother's constant protests and horrendous abuse during the beginning). If I hadn't met him I would still be there right now. I guess the best advice I can give you is to try to find outlets (like here). I know your pain with the online schooling too. I was doing it for a couple of years and every time I announced I had to take a test or do something for school she would make it next to impossible for me to concentrate on it, it was like having a 2 year old while trying to study. The worst part for me was I was forced to rely on her for my care because of anxiety and depressive disorders that I now know were caused by her and a lifetime of abuse. My heart truly aches for you right now, you deserve so much more. I am not sure if your issues are mental health ones or not, either way life just isn't fair. Just know that you are a wonderful person and that you deserve your own time, your own interests, and your personal space. Living with someone with NPD is the most emotionally exhausting experience on earth, it really just sucks the joy right out of you.

Sending all my love and encouragement big hugs to you.....I truly think we deserve a medal of honor for putting up with what we have  ;D

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Iguanagos

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Re: She NEVER stops talking!
« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2018, 11:45:00 AM »
Mine too is a nonstop talker.   :blahblahblah:

Thankfully I am a long day’s drive away and so in person visits are infrequent.  I am LC, talking on the phone several times a month at most.  Although “talking on the phone”, just like you, is really “me listening and she talks nonstop”.  She never asks about me or what’s going on in my life.  I murmur “uh-huh”, “wow”, “oh”, and other similar vocalizations just so she knows I haven’t fallen asleep.  If she does have a momentary realization that I’m not really participating, she can ask a token question about me, but within 5 seconds, she turns it right back to her.  I have joked that I could just be a potted plant and she wouldn’t notice.  I definitely have other things going on (laundry, internet surfing, cleaning, exercising) at the same time to keep my sanity.

I have read that our narc sees us not as an individual, but as a mirror.  We reflect back to them how they see themselves.  That’s why they don’t really SEE us at all.  Imagine your face as a mirror aimed at her.  That is how she sees you.

I am so sorry that you are stuck being with her as your carer.  That really limits your options, but doesn’t eliminate them entirely.  Here are some things that occurred to me if you think any of them will help:

Since you really value the relationship with your neighbors, is there any way to clue them in as to the situation when your mother is not there?  You don’t have to tell them the whole story, and they already know she’s difficult.  Maybe just get them aside and tell them you are aware she has “issues” (my favorite way of describing a PD to a non, most “get it” immediately), but that you value their friendship and kindness.  They may try extra hard to stay in touch with you around your NM.  If your mother leaves for appointments or shopping or whatever, that might give you a little window of time for your own contact with your neighbors.  In between, texting or emailing might really help you stay connected with them.  They sound kind and willing to try.

How wonderful that you’re taking a correspondence course!  Your mother sounds like she’s completely unable to respect your need for privacy and quiet for studying, so what about using earbuds or headphones to reinforce that boundary?  I like the idea of big giant headphones that are impossible to visually ignore, like the wireless ones.  Even if she still talks and you can still hear her, you can pretend that you can’t hear her.  You will have to train her like a toddler that you are not available when those headphones are on.  Even if your correspondence course does not require headphones, pretend that it does!  You can be listening to relaxing music instead.  She doesn’t need to know.

This one might be a little more difficult, but can you enlist anyone – a friend, someone from a local school, someone from a volunteer organization – to come over to speak with you, and only you, about something to do only with you – a school subject, specific training on a software program, etc.  Something that gives you the opportunity to say to your NM, “Please excuse us – we need to focus on this discussion" – and then shut a door or go out on the porch or somewhere else?  She may not respect this boundary, but if you have pre-warned your friend to just ignore her no matter how awkward it gets, and no matter how much your NM pouts and protests, and stay focused on you, it will be more training that the world does not revolve around her.  Plus it will be a little harder for her to take both of you on rather than just you.  You deserve to have others in your life that NM has nothing to do with.

Best wishes for this challenging situation.

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UKannie

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Re: She NEVER stops talking!
« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2018, 12:23:38 PM »
And the thing is she doesn't talk about things that might interest  the person shes talking to, she doesn't seem to notice that the other person has no interest in what shes saying, and she talks at the person- denying them the ability to say anything or to engage in the conversation at all!
this has contributed to multiple friendship breakdowns over the years and currently i'm afraid its going to destroy our friendship with our neighbours who we are both close to.
I haven't posted for a while but your post reflects some of my current frustrations.

I live around 2 hours away from my parents and generally I just leave my mother alone to alienate people as she pleases. But now she and my dad are older I see them with a smaller and smaller support network. I worry because without that, it leaves me and my brother under greater pressure to provide them with company as they get older and frailer. So the concern is for myself really to be honest.  :flat:

I don't think a day goes by when I don't feel angry about my mother's poor social skills and lack of empathy. I fully sympathize because it is impossible not to be affected by it.
 :bighug:

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HeadAboveWater

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Re: She NEVER stops talking!
« Reply #7 on: May 08, 2018, 12:50:23 PM »
My MiL is like this. I say that talking is her cardio. I used a decibel meter app on my smartphone and clocked her “conversing” at 86 dB in a small room of six other people during last year’s holidays. My husband has had the same job for six years, but she has no idea what it is because she talks over him whenever he answers her questions about it.

If you are in a situation where you need quiet, create boundaries so that you can get it. Make a point of putting in ear plugs and covering up with noise-canceling earphones. Do your work somewhere she won’t follow and prattle on, like your bedroom, or even the loo if necessary. I don’t know the limitations of your disability, but if it’s possible to be dropped off for a half or full day at the library, you might want to consider it.

Ignoring is powerful. The self talk thing probably is for attention. Try not to take the bait even if you are so distracted that you can’t do your own work, pretend that you are just plugging away.

As for the social situations, no you can’t change her. Your observation that she’s had quite a lot of feedback and chosen to make no changes is astute. I can see your concern, however, that her behavior could lead to you becoming socially isolated. Could you call or email one of the neighbors privately and say that you’d like their help getting out to a cafe or to a movie? Or, if you were to try studying in the library, that could be a jumping off point for meeting up. Is there a local group that helps with transport or social meet-ups for people whose careers are not available? Yes, it will likely cause some friction with your mother. However, you are entitled to form some relationships of your own. I fully understand that it will be logistically hard and that your mother’s reaction will be challenging too. I encourage you to push through to get the social support you deserve as well as to have some breaks from your mother.

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Gaining Clarity

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Re: She NEVER stops talking!
« Reply #8 on: May 08, 2018, 05:29:06 PM »
I feel for you, Writing. It's exhausting and frustrating.

Not sure what I can offer other than sympathy since I'm NC with my Nmom.

When I was in contact, I basically did other things while she droned on and on during a phone call. When I'd get sick of it, I just say, "I gotta go. Bye"

In the company of others, my mother always made a point of COMPLETELY ignoring me to speak to others. Wouldn't respond to me or even look at me in these situations. What she didn't realize is that I actually enjoyed it. It took the pressure off of me, giving me a much needed mental break from her.

I suspect your mother is like mine. Oblivious. Won't get it and doesn't want to get it. My mother has been incensed on more than one occasion when family and friends have told her that she talks too much. If repeated and pointed attempts don't get through, nothing else will.

You said: I've tried pointing out to my mum that in normal conversation you need to be aware if people aren't interested in what you're saying and modify your conversation accordingly, but her reply is "so i'm not allowed to talk about things that interest me!? is that it!?"

Awareness isn't in the realm of possibility or consideration with narcissists.

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SE7

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Re: She NEVER stops talking!
« Reply #9 on: May 08, 2018, 11:33:07 PM »
My BPD/Nm also never stops talking. She wouldn't leave anyone in the rain, but she sure does know how to talk! The only solution I can offer you is to call her on it. I usually will just say "so when do I get to have a word in edgewise? can I talk now?" or simply "Let me respond to what you're saying!!!!!" lol I think it is different dealing with BPDs vs. NPDs. BPDs can actually be worked with for *some* degree of awareness, even if they too twist everything around. (though they won't change to our liking really ever). I have always told her that I appreciate at least her willingness to change or become aware of things. This however is NOT the case with NPDs (like my F) ... if you try to change an N, good luck! It will never work, because they are NEVER WRONG! (in their eyes of course) - so with that, I have to agree with other posters here since you say she is an N.