New here. Dealing with PD parent(s)

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New here. Dealing with PD parent(s)
« on: June 04, 2021, 07:59:53 AM »
Hello all! Iíve come across this website throughout the last couple years for advice, but Iíve had a really hard time getting anything to stick.
Iím a female in my early 20ís, currently taking classes at a community college and working part time. I still live with my mom and stepdad. Iím also on the autism spectrum, which has caused me to have an overly blunt way of communicating. Apparently this doesnít go over very well with PD people because they frequently take offense to the ways that I state things, and use it to play the victim when Iím least expecting it.

My mom and biological dad werenít together when I was born, so I struggled through a tough custody battle as a child. There is definitely something wrong with my bio dad, as I was frequently parentified and mistreated while I was with him for mandatory visitation. I dreaded seeing him, and celebrated when my mother gained full custody of me. My mother is definitely caring and empathetic, but seems to have some fleas from being around her own NPD mother and current husband. Itís only gotten worse since she got married too.

My mom married my stepdad shortly after she gained custody of me. My stepdad is a very typical narcissist who thinks extremely highly of himself, while constantly belittling others through various words and actions. He has an obsession with absolute minimalism and tidiness, so he gets extremely upset and angry when people do not keep things as neat as he wishes they were. He has even thrown out sentimental items of mine and my momís without talking to us about it first because he saw the items as ďuselessĒ. He will guilt-trip my mom or myself for being inadequate enough to not do things to his standards, and then ramble on about how much we pretty much owe our lives to him because of everything heís done for us, and because of how much he loves us. Yet these are all words with very few actions to show for them. The main thing heís provided for us is a steady income, which is also the main reason my mother is still married to him. Oh yeah, he also has a six-figure income, yet insists on keeping a large chunk of it in savings as a ďcushionĒ, and then constantly tells my mom and I that we are just ďtoo brokeĒ to afford certain things like an education, or even just enough groceries to feed us all. (He usually eats all of our grocery food within the first week of buying it, so weíve had to buy more which he didnít like.)
My mother is constantly running on empty because of his manipulative behavior, and she rarely dedicated any time to herself, constantly worrying about what his opinion would be on the things she chooses to do(he always tells her that the activities she likes are useless/weird/a waste of time and that she should be homemaking in that time instead). It really hurts for me to watch.

Iíve pretty much given up on having any kind of ďrealĒ relationship with him, but being financially dependent on him makes putting up boundaries extremely hard. Iím applying for as many scholarships, grants, and paid internships as I can while also being in school and working part-time. Itís exhausting for me, especially because I still feel like Iím not prepared to be completely on my own so soon due to my intense struggles with executive functioning and other autism-related stuff. I really do not have much external support either.
My biological father also wasted all of my college funds on suing my mom for custody, so that option pretty much went down the drain a long time ago.

Iím just so tired of everything. Every day thereía some kind of conflict or battle, whether it be due to my stepdad taking out his work stress on my mom and I, or my mom being so drained that I need to take on her role in the house, or having to cram all my schoolwork into the evening because they both make me feel guilty for doing it in the daytime  ďwhen I could be helping one of themĒ, etc.
I have a great therapist, so I feel like I could work on these things with her, but I honestly have no idea where to even start. Thereís just so much to unpack that I feel like Iíd never get to a place where I can step back and find a way to handle it.

I feel like my entire life is filled with people like my stepdad due to generational stuff, and Iím not sure how Iím ever going to get out unscathed. I already have crippling anxiety, and am only recently coming out of a horrible bout of suicidal depression that lasted my entire adolescence. Not sure how I got out of the depression tbh because nobody in my life was even the slightest bit empathetic towards me, and I was frequently punished for crying and told that I was just being ungrateful and sorry for myself.

Sorry if that was a bit too long, and thank you to anyone who was willing to read any of it. Iím just kind of at a loss at the moment, and would deeply appreciate any advice! Thank you.


Boat Babe

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Re: New here. Dealing with PD parent(s)
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2021, 09:25:49 AM »
Hi there Justanotherpersonhere and welcome.  You are on the right forum and you have joined an excellent bunch of people who really understand the issues you are talking about.

I am really glad that you have reached out and that you are also accessing therapy as you are still very young and have got all your adult life ahead of you which is going to be so much better than your life as a child and adolescent.

I get the difficulties of being neurodivergent, which can make life difficult at the best of times in a society that does not recognize different ways of being. You often have to work twice as hard as everybody else to get the same result.  Then, add to that your father and your stepfather, and the pressure is really on.  You are also supporting your mum, which is an added burden for a young person.

IMO, you need to break your situation down into your priorities (finishing your education, staying healthy and planning the next stage of your life), establishing what is and isn't within your control, gaining a good understanding of the tools from the toolbox on the OOTF website (people here swear by them). Know that having had a childhood like yours, like mine and like most of us here, makes you vulnerable to predatory people so learn the red flags of said people, because they will find you if you don't have clear, self compassionate boundaries. Get as much support as possible, for your emotional and mental health and to support any additional challenges around things like executive function. You've had a rotten time of it and deserve better.

Many people here recommend journaling as a brilliant tool for self reflection and growth. Add in exercise, preferably outdoors, a creative outlet, healthy food and good sleep hygiene and you have got the bases covered. Again, get some support if this seems like too much.

You can post here as much or as little as you want, so feel free.  Sending hugs ❤️
« Last Edit: June 04, 2021, 09:28:13 AM by Boat Babe »
It gets better. It has to.