We had some fun on the old forum and came up with this Narcissistic Mother Dictionary, i.e. what they say, and then what they actually mean.
It's a bit of a laugh, but there's a lot of truth in it too, so I hope you enjoy it, and perhaps even recognise some of the translations.
I love you.
1) I want to manipulate you.
2) You're showing signs of breaking away and I want to suck you back in.
3) I've heard people say this and it seems to get a good reaction.
4) I command you to love me.
Don't ever feel like you HAVE to come see me for my birthday
If you don't make the 650 mile pilgrimage to celebrate me, I promise I will do something to make you pay dearly.
Go do something constructive.
Be gone, I have no interest in my own children.
You were an "accident".
You are only here because homicide would get me jail time, and I thought you'd be a better slave, so I didn't opt for adoption.
You go have yourself a good cry!
I resent your emotions, but at least I can use them to hurt you.
1) I never said that!
2) I have no idea what you're talking about!
1) Damned if I'm going to admit it.
2) Yes I said that but it doesn't work in the conversation right now.
3) I know I said it but it’s so much fun to f*** with your head until you don’t know what is true and you think you really are crazy! Yeah me!!!
It's been a long time since I talked to you and I just called to see how you were doing.
You just aren't remembering correctly.
My version of events shows me in a better light, so that's the official version.
You never do anything for me!
I know you've done a lot for me in the past, but that was then and it no longer counts. What have you done for me today?
It's time this stops.
None of my ploys have worked to pull you back so now I will treat you like a child.
I miss you.
Who have you been talking to? Who have you been in therapy with? what book did you read? etc, etc, etc....
I'm not getting the usual emotional response from you and you are too dim-witted to have figured out how to shut me down on your own.
Your brother and sister-in-law took us out to dinner last night. We had such a nice time - I don't think we have ever been treated that well.
You had better step up your game.
I'm so proud of you.
1 You have made me feel good and/or *I* feel good because of you.
2) I can take credit for that accomplishment.
Why are you wasting your time on something so silly and that takes you away from your family?
Why are you wasting your time on something so silly and that takes you away from me?
I want to help you with your kids.
Your father and I think ...
I think ...
So how are you?
1) I'd better ask, but don't worry I won't really be listening. Or as soon as you say a trigger word, which reminds me of something else, I'll interrupt and be off again!
2) I'm running out of things to boast to my friends about, so please come up with some accomplishments.
I'm so sorry your beloved 14-year old dog died.
Sigh ... I'd better at least mention it, and let you talk for one, maybe two, sentences about your upset and grief, and then I can talk about myself again.
1) You were very difficult to raise.
2) You were always my problem child.
You resisted my attempts to violate your boundaries, abuse you and humiliate you.
It's so sad. I feel so sorry for them.
It's so exciting! I love being this close to tragedies!
1) I will, on rare occasion, say the words but never change my behaviour.
2) Sigh, I'll say it if it'll stop you moaning, but don't worry, I don't mean it.
1) Let’s just let go of the past.
2) Let's just draw a line under it and get back to normal.
1) Let’s pretend everything is ok and I’m not a nightmare of a mother so I can continue to torture you and get my Narcissistic Supply.
2) Let me play my narcissist's game of never being held accountable for my behaviour.
Your sister-in-law is such a great cook! Simply amazing!
I want to take away any pleasure or pride you have in your own cooking skills.
What’s wrong with you today? What is your problem?
I’m pissed that you are denying me my much needed Narcissistic Supply. Damn you!
Honestly, nothing ever pleases you, does it? Sigh.
You have to let me treat you exactly as I please, without ever complaining.
I was only trying to help!
I demand the freedom to interfere in your life any time I want.
That is my right!
What happened to the nice girl I once knew?
Why are you no longer the easily manipulated and uncomplaining-of-abuse girl I raised you to be?
After all I’ve done for you! You’ve never appreciated me!
Wah wah wah I have violated your boundaries most of your life but even so I resent the hell out of your standing your ground and refusing to allow me to interfere, manipulate and control you.
Why are you treating me so badly? What have I done wrong?
I have the right to interfere in your life and abuse you without any consequences.
Because I'm the Mama, that's why!
You are really just a child, after all. I’ll never acknowledge that you are now an adult.
I want to give you this because I love you.
1) You're always looking for insult.
2) You are so easily offended.
3) I have to walk on eggshells around you.
4) You're over-sensitive.
I will not be held accountable for my actions and behaviours!
I never want to be a burden to you.
I will over-run your life and suck the life force from you and your children.
Have you lost some weight?
I am so glad that I brought that sticky bun with me on this visit.
You take me the wrong way.
I will invalidate your feelings as I have done your whole life.
1) You're such a good cook!
2) You're such a good mother!
You got that from me!
You don't respect me!
You won't let me abuse you.
You won't forgive me!
1) You won't let me away with what I did, nor let me continue to trample all over you.
2) I expect forgiveness with no apology and no intention of doing differently in future.
1) You need more time to think about it.
2) Well, have a think about it and get back to me.
I am not accepting your decision/opinion. Keep thinking until you come to the correct conclusion.
I was just joking even if I did say and do that, which I didn't.
I did say/do it, and I did mean it, but damned if I'm going to acknowledge that.
You just won't admit when you're wrong.
You defended yourself from my lies!
Here's a gift.
Here is something, very likely something I have no more use for, that I am officially giving to you. But it is still mine, and therefore I get to say, forever more, what you do with it. And woebetide you don't appreciate it enough, over and over.