Healing From Complex Trauma & PTSD/CPTSD

A journey to healing from complex trauma.


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Yes, Narcissists Are In Love With Themselves; The Delusional Beliefs About Themselves ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

Having unfortunately dealt with a lot of toxic people in my life, I have come to realise that narcissists are indeed in love with themselves – but they are in love with a delusional beliefs about themselves.

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The self delusion – is lies.

Narcissists whole lives are built on lies and deceit. And this starts with the lies they choose to believe about themselves.

And they will do anything to protect those delusions. If anyone challenges these delusions, they will react really badly and defensively.

They will hurt people even more, and have no empathy, no conscience, no remorse. Continue reading


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How To Begin To Heal The Wounds Caused By Narcissistic Parents ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

As per my last article, narcissistic parents cause considerable damage to their children. Being raised by narcissists, is not normal and there are many wounds created, that affect the survivor – right through to their adulthood.

Last article can be read @ https://healingfromcomplextraumaandptsd.wordpress.com/2017/04/25/10-damaging-ways-narcissistic-parents-emotionally-harm-their-children-lilly-hope-lucario/


The following 12 steps, can be very helpful for the adult survivor. They may aid healing and greatly improve quality of life. They can aid moving towards creating a healthy life and a life of thriving and building genuine healthy relationships.

1. Dealing With The Full Extent Of The Abuse & Neglect Is Necessary

It is necessary to deal with the extent of the abuse, and this is not being disloyal or unfair to the narcissistic parent. A survivor of childhood narcissistic abuse needs to confront the truth, reality and issues in full, in order to be able to heal the complex wounds.

It may feel very uncomfortable and very painful to deal with the reality of parental narcissistic abuse. Survivors can feel they are in some way being unfair to the parent, which is usually due to the brainwashing throughout childhood.

It is needed, to understand whilst the narcissistic parent may have wounds from their own childhood, or life, this is not an excuse to abuse their children. Narcissists often also know the abuse is wrong. And this is shown by the narcissists’ capacity to act differently around people they are not abusing. Often they behave very differently at home, than they do elsewhere. Plus, they often lie about the abuse, which again shows they do know it’s wrong. The hallmark trait of narcissists, is a lack of empathy, remorse or conscience. So whilst they do know the abuse they choose to inflict is wrong, they have no desire to do differently, as they have no empathy for those they abuse.

2. Understand It Takes Time To Process The Extent Of The Abuse & Grieve

This period of time needed to process all of the damage caused, is different for everyone. I personally did not start to deal with the truth about my toxic parents, until I was 40. And it has taken a few years to process the full extent of the damage caused. For others they will begin to start dealing with the childhood abuse, in their 20’s and some it may be in their 60’s. That’s okay. And it is never too late to start to heal the wounds. We are only read to deal with it, when we are ready.

For some adult survivors, dealing with too much too soon, can be emotionally overwhelming, and it may require a gradual process. That is okay too. Each person is different and there are no hard and fast rules to healing, and no set timespan as to how long this healing journey takes.

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A childhood full of toxicity and narcissistic abuse, needs to be grieved. This can take time. Grieving abusive parents, grieving a horrible childhood, grieving all the abuse endured, grieving all the child should have had, but didn’t, is hard. Like love, safety, protection, being cherished, being encouraged. It can be an emotionally painful grieving process. But, as with any loss – grieving is necessary and it allows the survivor to feel all the normal emotions they were never allowed.

3. Read Up On Different Types Of Abuse Caused by Narcissistic Parents

Narcissists often treat each of their children differently. They often assign roles to each child, and those roles are entirely for the benefit of the parent. One child may be assigned the role of scapegoat. And another child may be assigned the role of ‘Golden Child’. Both of these are very different, and may have different consequences, to the child and the adult they become. Narcissists often triangulate, and pit their children against each other and they rarely encourage healthy relationships between siblings.

Narcissists also have their preferred manipulation tactics. Some love to use the silent treatment. Others love to shout, scream and call their children names. Some love to make their child responsible for caring for other siblings.

It’s good to read up on the different types of abuse, as this helps us learn all the abuse was in fact entirely due to the parent’s own issues, and not due to anything the child did wrong.

I have a selection of resources from mental health professionals and best selling books, on my Website @ https://www.healingfromcomplextraumaandptsd.com/

4. Learn About Boundaries

Narcissists don’t have healthy boundaries, and this affects the growing child. Often the adult survivor will need to learn what healthy boundaries are, how to implement them and how to maintain them.

This can be a huge area of healing, and it can take time and a lot of willingness to look honestly at any deficit of healthy boundaries, and make the changes needed.

Some of the issues created by unhealthy/poor boundaries…. not being able to protect self from further toxic abuse, being a people pleaser and having a belief system that life is about meeting other people’s needs.

For resources about healthy boundaries – see https://www.healingfromcomplextraumaandptsd.com/developing-boundaries-

5. Learn About Self Care

When raised by narcissistic parents, the child’s needs, are not a consideration. Continue reading


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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 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

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Watching Narcissistic Mothers Harm Their Daughters in ‘Feud’, Was Eye Opening

I’ve been watching Feud over the last week. It’s the show about Bette Davis and Joan Crawford, and their intense rivalry, and their toxic lives.

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It is really eye opening for me. Parts of it – seeing how both of these women treated their daughters – was very reminiscent of my relationship with my mother.

Both Bette Davis and Joan Crawford had personalities founded in narcissism, ego, envy & manipulation. Having done some research, I am aware they were both considered narcissists, or possibly Crawford was Borderline Personality Disorder – but of the narcissistic type. They were both highly manipulative, selfish women.

It was fascinating watching this show and I’ve also watched most of ‘Whatever Happened To Baby Jane’ and it is amazing how well both of these women could play the part of terrible human beings, with pathological envy, and highly toxic personalities. And I know it has been said – they were so easily able to play these parts, because those behaviours and attitudes were part of their actual personalities.

Both of these women have daughters who went on to write books – about the toxic nature of their mother’s personalities and the abuse they endured. I have only now worked out that the phrase ‘Mommie, Dearest’ – used often by daughters of narcissistic mothers – comes from the book named ‘Mommie, Dearest’ (and the subsequent movie) – written by Joan Crawford’s daughter. Bette Davis’ daughter wrote ‘My Mother’s Keeper’ and again this expresses the highly toxic relationship between the daughter and her narcissistic, abusive mother.

What struck me as very reminiscent of my own relationship, with my toxic mother – is how the daughters were both just extensions of their mother. Both expected their daughters to look after them (parentification abuse), and all thoughts and actions were totally selfish and often abusive towards their daughters. There was no real or genuine love for their daughters. It was always ‘all about the mother’.

And it was interesting seeing some of the people around Joan Crawford and Bette Davis defend them, and suggest the daughters were lying, or exaggerating. Yet, the motivations of these people defending them – were entirely self serving as well. This happens in the lives of people where narcissistic people are present. Toxic people often have their ‘flying monkeys’ and defenders. And they like to try and bring down the person revealing the truth. It’s common, in these situations where toxic people are manipulating others.

Interestingly both of the daughters, chose to remove themselves from the toxic issues. They had insight into the toxicity of their mothers, and both sought to build lives away from the danger. And good for them.

I’m also not surprised that both of their mothers wanted to exact revenge and spite on their daughters, by disinheriting them. A final act of hatred towards their own daughters – for daring to expose their mothers for the abusive, selfish, narcissistic, vindictive bullies that they were.

I would like to read both of the biographies and watch the movie ‘Mommie, Dearest’. Continue reading


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When You Realise Your Husband Completely De-humanised You – For 16 Years ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

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I sadly have endured toxic, narcissistic/sociopathic/psychopathic people – my entire life. And that is not an exaggeration. The toxic abuse began as a child and continues on, including my current life. I have been abused by many toxic, character disturbed people.

My counsellor described recently, how processing the truth about my marriage is the last piece of my trauma history to deal with. And I see how I have systematically processed all the trauma throughout my childhood, my teenage years, my adolescence, my adult life.

I have been with my husband, for the last 16 years. And I did not know who my husband was, for the first 5 years, due to his narcissistic need to have a mask, pretend to be far better a person than he actually was, and all his daily pathological lying. It was only as other people started letting me know about his vile behaviours, I started to realise all the red flags.

Narcissists and psychopaths have false masks, personas, they wear. And they can actually be so delusional – they believe the lies they make up about themselves. They form delusional beliefs about being good people – when in fact there is nothing to support those beliefs, and plenty they have done to disprove their delusional beliefs, that they conveniently ignore, deny or lie about.  And his whole family are delusional and narcissistic, as per conversations about their behaviours, in counselling. It has been clarified they are a delusional, narcissistic and dysfunctional family. They lie, steal, exploit and they have no conscience or shame about it.

My husband groomed, lied, conned and manipulated me into believing he loved me, cared about me and into his delusion of him being a good person.

Now, upon a lot of painful reflection and processing – it is very clear he never loved, cared about me, and was never a good person. In fact, my counsellor stated he does not know how to love anyone. And she has counselled him too. And she has stated he constructed a fantasy of who he is. Which is basically a delusional state, but not insanity.

I realise – my husband treated me like a non human. He de-humanised me. He did not see me as a person with needs, emotions, a terrible past, or someone who deserved love, or someone to find out what I needed, or what my emotional needs were, or how he could help me deal with my past. None of that entered his mind. Ever.

He simply saw me as an object, to use and abuse. To take from and never give back. To stroke his narcissistic ego – but never return any appreciation or gratitude. To never bother to even consider what my emotional needs may be. And all this was whilst knowing I had been heinously abused in the 30 years prior to him.

He has admitted – he never once thought about what my needs were. He never once considered I had a terrible childhood and terrible first marriage and I may need someone to talk to about it. He never once showed any gratitude or appreciation for anything I did, or even acknowledgement for anything I did. It was all expected.

He has admitted he used and abused me. He has admitted he is a narcissist. He has admitted he has sadistic behaviours. He has admitted he has sex issues. He has admitted he sexually exploited me. He has admitted he manipulated, exploited and conned me from day one of knowing him. He has admitted he has emotionally, psychologically, mentally and sexually abused me.

He also admits he did all this knowing that lying, manipulating, grooming, exploiting a woman so heinously abused already, is sick and disgusting.

And the only reason he has admitted all this, is because there is 16 years worth of evidence of it all. And absolutely no proof to discount any of it. He cannot deny it.

There is no evidence of any love, at all.

And plenty of evidence of abuse.

And he admits I never did anything wrong to him, ever. He admits I am a good wife. A caring person. Someone who is honest, trustworthy, kind, considerate, compassionate and good. Someone who has never done anything bad to him, at all.

He also admits he feels no remorse, no shame, no conscience, no guilt. And I see how processing the heinous nature of all he has done, is too much for his weak, narcissistic mind and soul to deal with.

I don’t believe he is willing to try and tap into the shame he does need to feel. Because he made all those choices as a grown adult. A grown adult – who did know right from wrong. A grown adult who is not insane. A grown adult he admits he would not like any of this done to him – which proves he knows it is wrong. Yet, he did it all anyway.

And for me, this is all too much to process. I am actually having those out of body experiences, where I am disconnected from my body and looking down on myself as a stranger. And I feel the heartbreak that someone with empathy would feel, for someone who has endured so much abuse, throughout her entire life. And then had someone so callous and so toxic, come along and willingly destroy her more. Continue reading


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My husband is a wolf in sheep’s clothing

 

 

In my last counselling session, my counsellor explained how I have systematically faced all the trauma, and processed all the truth and heinous nature of it all. She explained, processing about my abusive husband, is the last piece of that journey.

My husband is a pathological and compulsive liar, has a fake persona, is completely delusional as to what kind of person he is, is selfish to the core and does not love anyone. He is also callous and lacks any moral virtue.

I described him as a wolf in sheep’s clothing. He pretends to be a far better person than he actually is. He pretends to be a nice person (sheep), when in fact, he preys on people to manipulative and use for his very shallow, narcissistic needs (wolf). My counsellor stated this was an accurate description of who he is. And she has insight into him, as she has done several counselling sessions with him.

My counsellor stated, he doesn’t know how to love. He is so consumed within his own narcissistic self, that he does not love. He uses. And abuses. His own needs are all he thinks about.

The wolf in sheep’s clothing, is also appropriate, because he has a cruel streak, which I have always hated about him. He likes to see people hurt, embarrass themselves. Even children. I’ve seen him laugh at his niece, when she fell and hurt her leg and was then limping. His siblings are the same. They are a very narcissistic family.

This week, I overheard a telephone conversation, where he was getting a work colleague into a lot of trouble. He claims she did something wrong, and it could have had implications on him. So, he reported her to the boss. And during this conversation – he was revelling in it. I could hear it in his tone. Interestingly – he had a lot of verbal confidence during this conversation with his boss. He spoke clearly and well. He had a lot of words about this colleague and what she had done.

Yet, whenever I speak to him about all the terrible things ‘he’ has done – he is mute. Completely emotionless. Like a mute, dumb, heartless, empty non human. He has no words to express remorse. No emotions. Absolutely nothing. He feels nothing about any harm he causes others.

The levels of hypocrisy in him feeling so entitled to point at other people’s wrongdoing  ……. whilst also conveniently ignoring all his own wrongdoing – is disgusting. Yet, he is absolutely okay with it.

He has a very entitled attitude. He is entitled to do whatever he wants. And no-one should question him, or try to make him accountable. He feels no remorse, and therefore no desire or need to put anything right. He feels no need to apologise. He feels nothing. For his own disgusting, manipulative, devious, selfish, abusive behaviours.

I regret every single day I have been with him. I regret letting him anywhere near me. I regret having children with him. But, I also know I was manipulated, by a wolf in sheep’s clothing. I believed the nice/fake persona he exploited people with. I only now know – the full extent of his personality disordered, character disordered self.

And it sickens me.

It explains all the thousands of lies, all the manipulation, all the deviousness, all the projection, the gas-lighting, the tantrums when he is challenged about his wrong doing. It explains all the affairs, having an affair with his own uncle’s wife, him never considering or thinking about my heinous abuse history. It explains his obsession with sex and lack of self control, impulse control over anything sex related. It validates what I have known for a long time, that sex was his main motivation for exploiting me.

It explains how he can so callously exploit, harm, use and abuse a woman who has already been so deeply harmed and as suffered as much as I have.

And the callous, heartless, empty, soul-less person he is, has absolutely no remorse for anything he has done to me. And because he feels nothing about the things he has done that harm others, he could so easily form a fantasy, delusional belief system of who he is. He had lied to himself for decades, that he is a good person. Despite all the evidence to the contrary, which he conveniently ignores, forgets about and then that part of him, in his twisted mind, does not exist. 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