Healing From Complex Trauma & PTSD/CPTSD

A journey to healing from complex trauma.


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10 Damaging Ways Narcissistic Parents Emotionally Harm Their Children ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

Surviving narcissistic parents, is literally all about survival. Narcissistic parents treat their children like extensions of themselves. The child is there entirely for the needs of the parent(s). The child learns to navigate issues, they are never meant to endure.

A childhood being raised by narcissistic parents, is far from normal. Narcissistic parents are toxic and selfish to the core. They have no regard for the needs of their children. They have no consideration for the harm they cause.

Everything, is ‘all about the narcissistic parent’.

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This article highlights 10 ways narcissistic parents can harm their children.

1. The child is never ‘good enough’.

No matter how hard a child tries, they will never be ‘good enough’. This is shown in words and actions modelled. This often leads to a child having poor self esteem and self loathing, which continue on into adulthood.  The child learns they are only valued for what they do, and not who they are.

2. The child’s needs are never a priority.

Only the narcissistic parent’s needs matter. There is always emotional neglect and the child learns their own needs, feeling and emotions, are not a consideration and are not valued. The child is not cherished, encouraged or validated, in any way outside of the parents needs being met. The child is not nurtured, or cherished. The child is often judged, criticised and shown contempt. This can lead to the child having a huge deficit of healthy self esteem, or self worth.

3. The child is expected to take care of the narcissistic parent’s emotional needs.

Narcissistic parents see their children as extensions of themselves. The child is manipulated into continually taking care of the parents needs, whilst no regard or consideration is shown for the child’s needs. The child is often expected to perform duties outside of what is healthy behaviour.

Parentification abuse – often occurs within a relationship between a narcissistic parent and their child. The child is inappropriately made to meet the emotional and/or physical needs of the parent. Often a child will be made to responsible for caring for siblings, in ways the parent is failing to. Often the child has to listen to adult issues such as financial issues, sexual relationship issues.

The child is forced to be an adult and often not treated as the child they actually are.

4. The child’s emotions will be denied, mocked and never validated.

Narcissistic parents bully their children. Sometimes the child of a narcissist will (understandably) feel upset, angry, hurt at times. These emotions, may be mocked and even taunting the child can occur. Examples, if the child is sad, the narcissistic parent will mock and state “you are a such a misery to be around”. If the child shows anger or gets upset, the narcissistic parent will e.g. then use cruel labels such as “you are such a drama queen”. The child’s emotions are never valued.

If the child expresses feeling (appropriately) annoyed at the narcissistic parents demands, the parent will immediately employ further abuse and manipulation, to gain back control. Such as guilt tripping, shaming, silent treatment. The child’s appropriate feelings, again denied and invalidated.

5. Love or affection is always conditional.

The narcissistic parent is unwilling to show genuine love, empathy. There are always conditions the child has to meet, which are always for the benefit of the parent. If the child fails to meet the ‘conditions’ -they will be punished in emotionally abusive ways the narcissistic parent knows will hurt their children. Such as the silent treatment, or cruel words and labels. The child fails to learn any sense of self worth, outside of meeting other people’s needs and demands.

6. There is often a ‘golden child’ role & often a ‘scapegoat’ role.

Narcissistic parents often have (unspoken) ‘roles’ their children are given, that are entirely for the unhealthy needs of the parent. These assigned roles, are not ever for the benefit of the children. These roles are emotionally abuse.

The ‘golden child’ is one role, and this child can do no wrong and is there to boost the unhealthy ego of the parent. The golden child is there is flatter the parent, and to feed the shallow image needs of the parents.

The ‘scapegoat’ is the child who is given the role of taking all the blame and shame for the dysfunction within the family. The narcissistic parent needs someone to blame, as this means the parent never has to be accountable for their abusive actions. They willingly project blame and shame onto the scapegoat and the child often develops toxic shame as a result.

7. Healthy emotional and physical boundaries, do not exist with narcissists.

A narcissistic parent does not comply with normal healthy emotional boundaries required for a child to feel safe. Inappropriate comments about appearance, inappropriate body contact, completely denying the child their needed emotions and feelings. Any beliefs the child expresses that are not compliant with the parents beliefs and needs, are denied and invalidated. The narcissistic parent may also make inappropriate comments to the child’s friends. They may snoop in their child’s diaries. Or make inappropriate and demeaning comments about their child, to other people.

This failure to teach and model healthy boundaries, means the child fails to learn them, and this can often lead to further issues well into adulthood, as the adult survivor then tries to navigate adult life, without many skills required for a healthy life.

8. Various methods of emotional abuse are used to maintain control and protect image.

Such as manipulation, gas-lighting, projecting, lying, the silent treatment, comparing to other siblings, mocking, blaming, shaming, coercion and guilt trips etc.

The image of the family is paramount. Nothing negative about the parents, is allowed to be spoken outside of the family. The phrase ‘don’t air your dirty linen in public’ is one the narcissistic parents and dysfunctional family hold very strongly.

9. The child grows within a dysfunctional environment of fear and anxiety.

The child is constantly aware their parent is requiring something from them. Hyper-vigilance is developed young, as the child learns to monitor and discern the narcissistic parents moods, actions and body language.  The child knows at any point the parent could be annoyed, angry, or emotionally withdraw – when the child does something deemed to be wrong. Or even just because the narcissistic parent is in a bad mood, which is projected onto the child.

The phrase ‘walking on eggshells’, or suffer the wrath of the narcissistic parents abusive reaction, becomes something the child learns to keep themselves as safe as is possible.

10. Affection is never appropriate or consistent, so the child never feels consistently loved, or cared for.

Not being shown genuine love, is emotional neglect and is emotionally abusive. One of the main needs of any child – is love, safety and protection. These are not provided by the narcissistic parent.

For the ‘golden child’, they learn affection is based upon how much they feed the parents ego and image. The golden child is often encouraged to mock and bully their siblings. They are encouraged to feel superior to their siblings.

For the scapegoat, they learn their only role is to willingly take the blame and shame for anything, and that resistance to this, results in the adult abusing the child further. To placate the parent any way possible, becomes the way the scapegoat child exists within the dysfunction.


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Life within a dysfunctional family, is an awful neglectful childhood. It can cause considerable emotional and social issues well into adulthood. When the adult survivor embarks on adult relationships, they often do not have the skills required for to develop and maintain a healthy relationship, with partners, friends, and sometimes with their own children.

Often adult survivors of narcissistic parents have poor, unhealthy boundaries, that cause more issues – such as becoming an easy target for further abuse in adulthood.

Sometimes, the adult survivor has no awareness their childhood was dysfunctional. Sadly, this will mean the adult survivor is unaware of how their lives continue to be affected by their childhood.

Sometimes, the adult survivor is aware, or does become aware of the dysfunction, and they will choose to learn about healthy relationships, maybe seek counselling and will begin to heal the deep wounds and complex issues caused by their narcissistic parent(s).

Narcissistic abuse from parents, can also cause mental and physical health issues in adulthood. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Depression, Anxiety Disorders, OCD and many more mental health issues, can result. Chronic Fatigue, Fibromyalgia and other physical health issues can result.

For anyone looking to heal their own wounds from a dysfunctional and toxic childhood, I do recommend therapy, with someone trained and experienced in toxic abuse.

I have written about 12 ways adult survivors can begin to heal these deep wounds caused by narcissistic, toxic parents.

See @ https://healingfromcomplextraumaandptsd.wordpress.com/2017/04/25/how-to-begin-to-heal-the-wounds-caused-by-narcissistic-parents-lilly-hope-lucario/

I have a host of information which may help survivors, and those interested on my Website which is recommended by mental health professionals with the trauma and abuse field. My Website includes a whole range of books and resources, which further explore the damaging ways of toxic, narcissistic parents, and the harm they cause. Plus, there are resources on healing, including books from therapists and mental health professionals.

Website @ @ https://www.healingfromcomplextraumaandptsd.com/

~ Lilly Hope Lucario

All blogs written by Lilly Hope Lucario and subject to © Copyright Protected.

All rights reserved.

No part of any entry/blog, may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, screenshots, copying & pasting, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods.

This includes adaptations in all forms of media.


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The Life Impacting Consequence – Of Toxic Parents Destroying Their Children’s Happiness ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

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Toxic parents project their own darkness and issues onto their children.

One of the ways they do this, is to make sure the targeted child(ren) are not happy and to make sure they do not believe they should be happy. They destroy any happiness their children try to find.

Having my mother tell me this any time I tried to be happy – made me believe being happy was shameful and something I did not deserve. I only deserved to be unhappy – and even that was mocked.

Complex trauma survivors struggle to maintain any positive emotions. And this is one reason why.

Complex trauma survivors often experience happiness or positive emotions for very brief periods of time, before they spiral down into what feels like depression, but in fact is often shame.

Another reason positive emotions are short lived, are because when you are living in a harmful, toxic, unsafe home – abuse is always imminent – and we grow to know happiness is only ever very short lived, before we are enduring the next abusive onslaught.

Children’s brain are still growing and developing throughout their childhoods. The harmful and abusive experiences – affect the growing brain. Along with the brain being wired for fear, it is also wired to experience shame – as soon as any positive emotions are felt.

Having abusive parents – is horrendous and a childhood no child should ever endure. Continue reading


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I fell in love with a man who did not exist; the reality for many survivors of narcissistic partners ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

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I was not aware in any way, that the man I was falling in love with, had a delusional persona that he used to manipulate and exploit me.

I did not know his persona was a lie.

I did not have the opportunity to know the truth about him and therefore had the choice to know who he really was, and to walk away, stolen from me.

This is the reality of many narcissistic partner survivors.

Please know – if this happened to you – you should not feel any shame for having believed the lies, the persona, the fake image presented to you.

Narcissists often fool mental health professionals – so anyone can be fooled by them.

The only shame that should be felt – is by the narcissist  – for their chosen manipulative, exploitative, devious and deceptive behaviours. Continue reading


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Be Aware Of Toxic People Re-directing The Focus – To The Reaction To Abuse ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

A post to my page. I have endured this my entire life.


Toxic people like to re-direct the focus – away from their chosen decisions to abuse – to the reaction of the victim.

It’s a form of manipulation, that enables the toxic abuser – to avoid focussing on their actions, to avoid taking accountability or responsibility for their chosen abusive behaviours.

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When they re-direct focus to e.g. the victims anger – they can claim the victim is the one in the wrong. The victim is the one with the issues. The victim is the problem.

See how they shift the focus and shame – from themselves – to the victim? It happens a lot. It is very common with toxic people.

They can say things like ‘why are you so angry’ – ‘no one can talk to you when you get like this’, ‘look at you – you’re crazy’.

The focus is shifted – and the focus becomes about the anger/resentment/emotional distress – the victim is feeling.

The anger/ emotions/ distress etc the victim has ‘every right’ to feel…….. because being angry/ emotional/ distressed- at being abused – is a NORMAL and rational response to being treated badly and to being abused.

Continue reading


The Narcissist’s Flying Monkeys Are Everywhere ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

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Something I have learned in life, is toxic people are everywhere. And their flying monkeys are everywhere too.

Flying monkeys are people who support toxic people. They encourage and condone the toxic persons behaviour. They make excuses for toxic people. Or they ignore the toxic persons bad behaviours and choose to only see what they want to believe is good behaviour. (The ‘good’ behaviour still only being the toxic persons self serving behaviour, as they don’t do anything good – unless it is serving themselves in some way).

Flying monkeys can be family members, friends, church people, co-workers, therapists.

You would think therapists would know better, but they can indeed be flying monkeys when they have a self serving vested interest in condoning the toxic persons behaviour.

Throughout my life, I have seen so many toxic people being supported by flying monkeys.

Both of my husbands, have family who are flying monkeys. They choose to ignore the bad their adult children choose to inflict, and ‘only see the good’. Making excuses for the toxic behaviour and not making their adult children accountable for their bad behaviour. This following on from their poor parenting in the toxic persons childhood. I see clearly how poor parenting – has lead to the child becoming an adult narcissist.

I’ve seen flying monkeys within families, workplaces, groups of friends, churches, therapists rooms. It goes on everywhere.

I’ve seen it happen many times over social media. People who I discerned being toxic, have their flying monkeys who condone the toxic persons behaviour – as long as there is some self serving need being met. They will stay connected to the toxic person – for as long as the toxic person is promoting their work, books etc. Continue reading


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Two posts about abusers & abuse, honesty & courage ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

Two posts I wrote today on my Lilly Hope Lucario Facebook page @

https://www.facebook.com/LillyHopeLucario


Just because there are some people who are unable to cope with the fact they were intentionally abused by someone who did not love them….
Does not give them the right to push their self serving abuser excuser beliefs, onto those of us who do deal with the truth.

Understanding the truth about abusers and the intentional motivation, along with knowing the abuser’s unwillingness to have remorse, empathy or reagrd for human suffering……
Does not make us someone lacking in compassion.

It makes us people with the capacity and courage for truth.

And I do have appropriate compassion for abusers – because I don’t wish them anything inappropriate. I don’t wish them ‘bad karma’, or any form of pay back.

But, I do understand the necessity for them to face the consequences of their chosen actions. Including legal action, contacting the police, jail time if necessary.

People who have beliefs that make excuses, enable, minimize etc – are not dealing with truth, reality and have no empathy for the victims.

In fact, they have no empathy for the abuser. Because making excuses and enabling an abuser – is not in the abusers best interests either.

So when people deem people like myself as ‘lacking in compassion’ for abusers – they are simply delusional. And greatly misled by their own self serving and self soothing needs.

~ Lilly Hope Lucario


I am so over seeing behaviours such as….. a lack of empathy, conscience, remorse, shame, guilt, a sense of entitlement, and a lack of regard for causing suffering to others…… classed as ‘mental illness’.

They are not about mental illness……….. they are being a shitty and abusive person.

They are all the character traits of narcissists, sociopaths and psychopaths.

I’ve been abused by them all, and I know 100% they all knew what they were doing was wrong, they all caused abuse intentionally and they kept on doing it anyway.

Pretending or deluding self that ‘they can’t help it’ – is simply wrong.
Yes – they can help it, because they can all act differently around people.
They can all act ‘nicely’ when they are grooming potential prey, or are around people they want to impress.
They select the behaviours they want to have, around different types of people.
Showing they can indeed have self control.


There are too many ‘abuser excusers’ and flying monkeys in this world…….
Continue reading


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Received a copy of Shahida Arabi’s best selling book, that features some of my work :)

Shahia Arabi is the best selling author of books about recovering from toxic abuse caused by abusers – such as narcissists, sociopaths, psychopaths.

Shahida kindly asked me if I wanted to contribute to her second book and also requested to add another article of mine. I am deeply thankful to Shahida to include the articles and links to my sites and social media. (My articles are on pages 193-197).

I am also so touched of her dedication at the beginning of the book. It has been and continues to be an honour to support Shahida and others, in their journeys to healing and in reaching out to others.

This is Shahida’s best selling book –

which I have recommended on my Website.

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This is the lovely dedication

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I consider Shahida a friend, even though we have not met. I love her compassion, her drive and her desire to reach out, help and educate others, and give survivors of toxic abuse – the hope needed through the healing journey.

I highly recommend this book – it has everything in it anyone could want to know – including a lot of advice about healing. Continue reading


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It’s painful grieving people – who cause such harm and know they couldn’t care less ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

I am still slowly ploughing through my book. I intended writing a dedication and acknowledgement to my therapist. Who I now no longer see. My therapy has ended really badly, and at a really bad time. But, that’s life.

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So, I will no longer be acknowledging her in my book. Which is sad. I already had part of it written out. And now when I read it back – it is painful. Because the beliefs I had about her, were so wrong.

It’s weird to know my book will no longer have two things in it, that were so important in my life. My relationship with God. And my therapy relationship.

It’s very sad. Very painful. And it’s needed to feel that.

Because grieving is painful.

One of the most painful parts, is knowing that while you are enduring all these painful emotions and hurting so much….. the person who caused the pain, doesn’t think about you at all. Continue reading


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No, you do not ‘have’ to be thankful at thanksgiving ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

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My message of empathy for people who understandably, cannot feel positive emotions, and do not ‘have’ to, just because of the time of year, or because others say we ‘should’.

If you are feeling thankful, that’s great.

If you are not, that’s valid too.

No shame or judgment, from me.

~ Lilly Hope Lucario

All blogs written by Lilly Hope Lucario and subject to © Copyright Protected.

All rights reserved.

No part of any entry/blog, may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, screenshots, copying & pasting, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods.

This includes adaptations in all forms of media.