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13 Traits of a Narcissistic Household Construction

Should you’re in a narcissistic household, we’d first wish to applaud your braveness and validate your ache. 

You deserve higher. 

The idea of household is constructed across the assumption that oldsters have unconditional love for his or her kids, set good examples, and train the distinction between proper and fallacious whereas supporting every baby’s wants. 

Narcissistic households flip that idea on its head.

As a substitute of being a secure house, the household dwelling turns into a three-ring circus with the narcissistic member of the family because the ringleader. 

The remainder of the household falls into designated roles, a submissive elephant or (flying) monkeys placing on a supportive present. 

What Is a Narcissistic Household Construction?

A narcissistic household system is run by one dad or mum who suffers from narcissistic tendencies or has a diagnosable narcissistic character dysfunction (not that they’ll ever be recognized).

When somebody is a narcissist, they lack empathy and humility.

As a substitute, they’ve constructed a facade to cover their weak, soulless self.

They’re solely involved with being superior, praised, and most popular, even when utilizing manipulation. 

On this poisonous construction, you’ll be able to count on to see issues like: 

  • Focus is drawn to the narcissist on all accounts. Their wants supersede anybody else’s, even in emergencies. 
  • Youngsters are solely nearly as good because the narcissist deems them to be. A narcissist won’t ever know a real emotional connection; kids solely construct them up or bear the implications. 
  • The dad or mum wants a continuing provide of reward. It’s not sufficient for a narcissistic dad or mum to have management; they search fixed validation from members of the family who assist their warped view of themselves. 
  • Threatening the availability creates chaos within the household. Members will be pitted towards one another unknowingly and fall into designated roles inside the household.

What Are the Roles in a Narcissistic Household?

As if the innate competitors for fogeys’ consideration isn’t onerous sufficient for siblings, a narcissistic household construction categorizes every member on the whim and can of the narcissistic dad or mum. 

The Narcissist

The narcissist is the alpha canine. They rule the pack with a agency fist and management all the things from the meals to the furnishings. In a narcissistic thoughts, the household is a standing image to again up the narcissist’s greatness.

Since they’ve the devilish capacity to by no means emotionally join with their pack, there isn’t any guilt or apologetic crutch to get in the best way. 

The Enabler

The enabler is the beta canine, wielding some energy however consistently bending to the alpha’s will and by no means difficult them.

Often, a partner will fall into this function, having already spent years being trauma bonded by narcissistic abuse.

They’ve seen the implications and dwell on eggshells whereas attempting to guard their kids from the identical abuse and backing up the narcissist’s calls for. 

The Golden Baby

The golden baby will get their identify from the worth they maintain—like a big piece of gold. They may also be known as the proper baby or the mascot baby.

This baby is handled in another way, getting extra reward, leniency, and items. This designation can come from sheer loyalty to the narcissist or status-improve traits like attractiveness, intelligence, or character. 

The Misplaced Baby

A baby can get misplaced in a narcissistic household and grow to be quiet, reserved, and aloof. This spawns from a coping mechanism to keep away from battle.

They don’t need the expectations of the golden baby however don’t need the brunt of the scapegoat.

Whereas they won’t be probably the most spectacular member of the family, they’ll escape right into a world of daydreams and catastrophe avoidance since they don’t rock the narcissistic boat.

The Scapegoat

A narcissist has so many cracks of their facade that it’s unimaginable at all times to be a shining star. E

nter the narcissist household scapegoat who at all times takes the blame. They may by no means be ok. This will create a self-fulfilling prophecy of unhealthy attention-seeking habits. 

Even when the household scapegoat succeeds just like the golden baby, the narcissist is not going to meet it with the identical reward. 

What about an solely baby in a narcissistic household? They take an extremely difficult hit as a result of they rotate by roles primarily based on their habits and obedience to the narcissist. 

13 Traits of a Narcissistic Household Construction

Whereas there’s a more healthy model of start order traits in a household, like the center baby feeling just like the misplaced baby, these roles don’t stick in a narcissistic household.

It’s extra about what’s taking place behind closed doorways that change the household DNA.

1. Continuously Searching for Standing

A narcissist wants all the things related to them to be a mirrored image of their very own greatness. They’re susceptible to creating good but unattainable expectations of their household.

They need minions, not particular person thinkers, surrounding them. Of their thoughts, everybody round them envies their household. 

father scolding his son while kid covers ears narcissist family structure

They’ll by no means obtain ideally suited standing as a result of narcissists get bored simply. They want ongoing, relentless escalation of their standing. 

2. Cunningly Searching for Provide

That boredom creates ongoing battle—actual or manufactured—to convey the main focus again to how the narcissist actually is. Each single act a narcissistic dad or mum does is designed to get provide. 

In the event that they cooked dinner on the grill, it needs to be the very best burger the household has ever tasted. If they assist a toddler with homework, correct reward of their very own intelligence needs to be lauded. 

Manufactured provide comes when the golden baby will get a present, like being enrolled in soccer, whereas the scapegoat baby who desperately desires to play soccer is instructed they aren’t athletic sufficient. 

3. Relentlessly Creating Drama

A narcissist must be the focus as a lot as they should remind folks of their roles on this household dynamic. A lesser-known reality about narcissists is that ANY consideration is a provide. 

Even when a toddler rages towards a choice, all that does is sign that the narcissist controls the kid sufficient to elicit feelings.

A battle with a toddler can even draw consideration from the enabler within the type of sympathy and assist. 

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4. Continuously Bashing Boundaries

A narcissist believes they’re entitled and above societal guidelines. They’re at all times the exception to the rule.

This creates a world with out boundaries the place they’ll stampede by any social or emotional norm whereas nonetheless anticipating the remainder of the household to dwell inside specifically-designated parameters.

These designated limits will be expanded for the golden baby and narrowed for the opposite kids. That’s, so long as the golden baby stays of their function. 

5. Wildly Wielding Management

For the reason that good household comes from the distorted thoughts of the narcissist, and the proper goal is at all times shifting, the narcissist wants to bolster management over every chosen member of the family. 

They’ll cancel a household journey, blaming the poor grades of the scapegoat, getting compassion from the enabler, and pushing the quiet baby into extra submission whereas taking the golden baby out to the native theme park alone. 

They’ll make statements like “We are able to’t go on trip till ((scapegoat)) get good grades,” breaking belief and connections between siblings. 

6. Corruptly Creating Competitors

This isn’t the wholesome sort of competitors the place everybody can obtain success; it’s the type that festers and rots effectively into maturity for impacted kids.

This surfaces in statements like, “Why can’t you be extra like ((the golden baby))?” A household recreation evening isn’t regular as a result of the narcissistic should win. 

The competitors amongst kids isolates them from counting on one another and exhibits that the narcissistic dad or mum is the one true choose of excellence on this household. 

7. Repeatedly Refocusing Consideration

Sure, their kids are a trophy of the narcissist’s success, however the children can by no means get extra consideration, reward, or compassion than the mother and father. 

Even when a toddler leads to the hospital with a damaged bone, the dad or mum will shift consideration to their disappointment or how they “rescued” the kid from the accident that led them right here. 

Search for the telltale signal {that a} narcissist shifts consideration from their baby to themselves, even in absurd methods.

8. Maniacally Utilizing Manipulation

 As kids push again or converse up, the narcissist begins to get shrewd with their management techniques.

  • Gaslighting: Convincing the kid they’re too delicate or overreacting.
  • FOG (concern, obligation, and guilt): Preying on a toddler’s feelings and determined want for approval to get what they need.
  • Flying Monkeys: Utilizing different siblings to ship messages.
  • Shaming: Berating a toddler solely as a way to make it clear the narcissist is superior. 

9. At all times Trying Triangulation

Whereas assigning kids sure roles is a type of triangulation, the angles proceed because the dad or mum creates themselves because the savior of battle.

They could inform one baby one other sibling is mad at them and attempt to repair the (imaginary) state of affairs by appearing because the go-between. 

This reinforces the dominant function of the narcissist and preys on the youngsters’s poor communication abilities to resolve battle on their very own. 

10. Savagely Defending Secrets and techniques

It actually doesn’t matter to the narcissist that their good household is definitely dysfunctional. All that issues is that the complete household retains up the charade. 

Since most members of the family have been changed into flying monkeys, any pushback from the skin will probably be met with defensive vigor and extra gaslighting, lies, or manipulation

Does that imply kids are turning into narcissists? Not if they’ve emotional guilt about it. 

11. Consciously Creating Conditional Love

One hallmark of a narcissist is that they use love bombing to scout the weak spot, desires, and needs of their targets. That is a better activity when it’s their very own kids.

The narcissist clearly lays out the principles by phrases, actions, and a spotlight. You’ll get affection if you happen to abide by their wants and assist their ego. 

Youngsters that misstep, whether or not legitimately or within the mashed thoughts of the narcissist, will probably be denied consideration and presumably ostracized till they get with this system.   

12. Repeatedly Reassigning Blame

A narcissistic dad or mum creatively reassigns blame in any respect prices. Even when they endure from substance abuse, it will likely be the household’s fault for stressing them out a lot.

If they begin having monetary points, the youngsters will probably be blamed for being so needy. 

The enabler or golden baby may even settle for the blame, with Pavlov prompted pleading to hunt forgiveness. 

Narcissists are incapable of accepting blame as a result of they don’t assume they do something fallacious. This trait creates people-pleasing kids into maturity. 

13. Blatantly Rewriting Historical past

Not solely is the current day utterly managed by the narcissistic dad or mum, however the previous can be nonetheless beneath their command.

The dad or mum will deny occasions happened, inform members of the family they don’t bear in mind it accurately, and accuse (aka projecting) different members of attempting to be manipulative. 

They’ll deny they’d greater than two drinks at dinner, regardless that kids handled drunk narcissistic rage all evening.

They’ll even supply a praise throughout a toddler’s submissive second after which deny that go with ever occurred. 

How Does a Narcissistic Household Impression These in It?

The poisonous results of being in a narcissistic household run the gamut.

Even inside designated household roles, science isn’t certain why one golden baby of a narcissistic dad or mum turns into an everlasting folks pleaser, and one other turns into a narcissist.

parents fighting while kid is listening narcissist family structure

You may need been uncovered to narcissistic household habits if you happen to expertise any of those: 

  • Echoism: Named for Echo, who was doomed solely to repeat different folks’s phrases, whilst she was in love with Narcissus, these victims of narcissistic abuse don’t have any voice of their very own. They associate with what folks round them say. 
  • Individuals Pleaser: When a toddler has by no means centered on their very own wants, they’ll spend a lifetime making different folks completely happy to manage the chaos.
  • Codependency: They lack self-love and spend their total lives searching for to be an extension of one other particular person, not their very own lovely self. 
  • Insecurity: Not solely is the grownup baby of a narcissistic dad or mum insecure with themselves, however they don’t have any capacity to belief anybody else round them. The world doesn’t maintain a secure house. 
  • Addictions: The dearth of belief, consciousness, and coping abilities can push some folks towards alcohol or medicine to numb the ache or confusion.

The elephant within the room right here is that the narcissist, as evil and twisted as they’re, developed that trait from their very own childhood trauma.

They may solely cope by creating this invincible masks, like placing on Superman’s cape. 

Methods to Address Narcissistic Household Dynamics

Victims of narcissistic abuse have so many extra assets than in previous generations, providing an exquisite alternative to interrupt the cycle, even simply by studying articles like this one.

  • Learn the Room: As a substitute of taking part in the sport or raging towards it, you merely select to not play. You refuse triangulation and gaslighting. The one factor that will get beneath a narcissist’s pores and skin is indifference towards them.
  • Create Your Personal Validation: Cease searching for reward the place you recognize you received’t discover it. Rejoice your victories and create your individual path to success with clear milestones. 
  • Forgive the Narcissistic Father or mother: It’s too straightforward to hold a grudge into maturity. Repeatedly state, “I forgive you,” till it turns into actual. It is best to really feel extra pity than rage towards a narcissist. 
  • Nurse Your Wounds: Like an onion, the layers of trauma peel off over grownup years. You’ll be able to mourn for what you didn’t have as a toddler, however it’s also possible to use remedy and meditation that will help you heal.

Last Ideas

Immediately, proper now, this second — you have got the ability to interrupt the generational trauma of narcissistic households. You can not change what occurred up to now, however you can also make rattling certain it stops with you. 

What is it like to have a narcissistic family structure? Read this post and find out about this family type as well as some of its characteristics.


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