How to Safely Hold Compassion for the Narcissist in Your Life

Oct 4, 2022


If you’ve ever struggled with knowing how to have compassion and empathy for the narcissist in your life while also establishing healthy boundaries to keep yourself safe, you won’t want to miss today’s episode. This topic was actually requested by a listener, and I love getting to address important and much-needed topics like this one on the show.

I received this request from ‘Jill’ (that’s what I’m going to call her), and this topic could be an entire book honestly. We’re dealing with a narcissist mom situation, and I actually have plenty of personal experience with this myself. Narcissist moms are really their own breed, and they tend to wreak havoc on our nervous systems in subtle ways. Over time, this can all go really, really deep. Usually, these women are dealing with their own emotional immaturity, and it’s usually due to how they were raised (narcissism tends to go back generations, which is why it can be so tough to break the cycle).

The bad news with this being generational is you have work to do that you never asked for, but the good news is that it CAN stop with you-you can end the cycle for good.

When you’re trying to figure out how to have compassion while also setting boundaries, it usually means you’re dealing with someone you love, like a family member or close friend. I know it’s not always doable to go ‘no-contact’ and cut all ties, and you may not want to, which is totally your choice too.

In today’s episode, I’ll be talking more about:

  • Why it can be hard to have both compassion and healthy boundaries to keep you safe
  • What creates the situation that narcissism survivors have to deal with on a regular basis
  • The dynamic of having a narcissist mom in your life, and what your relationship may look like
  • How you actually can have appropriate compassion and empathy for your narcissist mom (or another narc in your life), while still keeping yourself emotionally safe
  • Why it’s okay to keep some relationships surface level, and not have a deep emotional intimacy in all of your relationships

You can safely hold compassion and practice empathy for the narcissist in your life, but you can’t save them from their problems.

Essentially, narcissists are like emotional children with harmful tools that are going to hurts others. They WILL hurt you in order to get their emotional needs met. They’re just not capable of genuine compassion and empathy for you, or anyone else.

I want you to know (and please remember)-you can NOT save your narcissist mom emotionally and make her pain go away, even though you have been conditioned to believe that. The child-like instinct you feel to try and fix your mom is very powerful, but you don’t want to engage in that. If you’re doing things to keep her happy and she’s not doing the work to process her grief in appropriate ways, you’re just putting a bandaid on a bullet wound. 

It’s okay for you to feel how hard it must have been for the narcissist in your life by practicing empathy, understanding how tragic his/her life must have been, and also realizing it’s not YOURS to deal with. If you need help with feeling appropriate compassion for your narcissist mom (or whoever the narc is in your life), while still keeping yourself emotionally safe from anything that happens in that dynamic, I would be honored to coach you, and help you break the cycle for good!

Resources and links mentioned in this episode:



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