31 comments on “A Golden Apology?

    • Hi TK&I,

      For more details of the history of my recent interaction with my golden child brother, you can click on the “Conversations with the Golden Child” category in the categories section.

      As an example, six months ago he subjected me to a 11 call phone bomb between 0100 and 0200 on my birthday.

      Thanks for stopping by!

      Stephen

      • After reading through that, I would say that maybe he might mean it in the moment(if you give every benefit of the doubt), but would that make it worth contact? Probably not. Maybe things would be more peaceful if you could change your phone number. I am so sorry. I hope your phone does not wake you in the middle of the night!

      • Thanks TK&I,

        I sometimes wish I could change my phone number. Unfortunately, I have handed out thousands of band business cards with my phone number on them, and I’d hate for people to not be able to reach me.

        Yes, my phone definitely did wake me in the middle of the night. It sucked honestly. I couldn’t believe that he did that! So very very rude. Maybe call once and leave a message or send a text to wish me a happy birthday, but to call 11 times? He’s like a petulant child.

        I don’t think it makes it worth contact, honestly. He’ll never get it, and he’s even stated as much. He literally told me that in an email.

        Thanks for your kind words and for stopping by and commenting!

        Stephen

  1. It is hard to say, isn’t it? And that may be the telling phrase, because with other people you’d know right away if it was real. You have a history of, “I’m sorry… I’m really sorry… I’m NOT sorry…” (Pee Wee Herman).

    I think your brother feels distress over your estrangement that is real. But like my own brother, he doesn’t have the empathy to understand why you feel the way you do. It must be a little like trying to fix a wagon without a full set of tools. In my own situation (as you know) I’ve chosen my own comfort over my brother’s because otherwise he’d always come first. Which sounds kinda twisted, but there you go.

    Alcohol does not make the situation better. I find that alcohol is usually involved in overtures in my situation as well. For instance, I’ve offered many times to meet my brother for coffee, he does not respond to these invitations, but wants to get together at a restaurant or at his house for dinner. You’d think if he really, really wants to see me that Starbucks would be ok.

    The last time we met in a alcohol setting (my fault as much as his) it was a disaster. Wouldn’t you think he’d understand my invitation to meet over coffee instead? I have not called him out on this, simply declined the dinner invitations and offered afternoon coffee. He clearly does not want to meet with me without his “medication.”

    I can see the red flag, and that helps me feel a little less guilt about “shutting him out.” Every little bit helps, I know I’ll always feel sadness about the separation and my helplessness to change it.

    Best wishes,

    Denise

    • Hi Denise!

      I think you’re spot on when you say that my brother feels distress over our estrangement, but lacks the empathy to understand why I feel the way I do. Excellent point! The only reason he wants a relationship with me is so that he doesn’t have to feel bad about our estrangement. It has nothing to do with me, it’s truthfully all about him. He really doesn’t care what my concerns might be, and he doesn’t want to listen to them. He’s literally told me that!

      I agree, calling up someone to give them a piece of your mind when you’re drunk is never a good idea. I had someone tell me that I should excuse him because he was drunk. I told them I completely disagreed with that viewpoint. It was his choice to call me when he was drunk and give me a piece of his mind.

      Another part that I think is quite apparent in his email is that his understanding of the situation involves only him being ‘unkind’ during the first phone call. I don’t think he understands why I might be upset. True, I’ve never told him why I am upset, but he is incapable of self reflecting sufficiently to even see where what he said might have been offensive. Maybe he doesn’t remember much of it because he was drunk?

      Additionally, he never acknowledges that the 11 call middle of the night phone bomb on my birthday may have been out of line. It shows how truly self centered he is when behaviors like that are deemed acceptable by him. He has absolutely no idea how inconsiderate and selfish he is, especially when it comes to me.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Denise! I hope you are well!

      Stephen

  2. Hello, From my personal point of few, I don’t think its a genuine apology , I feel like he’s waiting for you to make the move of getting closer to him. Hes leaving the door open for you , but he wants you to decide weather or not the communication will be continued . In other words Ill always be better than you , so whatever youd like just let me know..

    • Hi Elaine,

      I tend to agree with you. The tone of his email is that he is blameless and that I should excuse him because he was drunk. Drunk isn’t an excuse. If I go and drive a car while I’m drunk and kill someone the judge won’t say “Oh, he was drunk, no big deal, he didn’t mean it”.

      You’re right, it will always be all about him, and he will always see himself as superior to me. That’s OK. He’s welcome to believe whatever he likes. Truthfully, it’s his childhood programming at work. Programming that has served him well, at least in his mind.

      He doesn’t understand why I “shut him out”, and I don’t believe he ever will. In his mind, I’m the one with the issue, because I am failing to fulfill my familial role as scapegoat. A role that I’ve had throughout his life.

      Another slant is this: I’m the one that’s changed. He hasn’t. He doesn’t want me to change. His preference is that I maintain my longstanding familial role. He has no interest in seeing me as anything other than the family scapegoat.

      Thank you for your thoughts Elaine! Much appreciated!

      Stephen

  3. Hello Steven I need help I think my boyfriends mother is a NM. And has completely ruin our relationship I have so many questions and I feel completely helpless

    Sent via the Samsung GALAXY S® 5, an AT&T 4G LTE smartphone

    • Hi Kelly,

      I’m sorry your boyfriend’s mom is ruining your relationship. That sucks. I completely understand the helpless feeling you have. If your boyfriend’s mom is a narcissist, she see’s you as competition for her son’s affection and attention, and she will pull out all stops to ruin what you and he might have. I’m quite familiar with the dynamic. My mother called my girlfriend I had in high school a whore, and we had never had intercourse. She hated her, and refused to ever meet her. There are quite a few stories related to that girlfriend that I’ve yet to share on my blog, but suffice to say, my mother pulled out all stops to destroy our relationship, and ultimately succeeded.

      I’d be happy to help if I can. Please feel free to email me directly by clicking on my picture on the top right of my blog and I’d be happy to try and answer any questions you might have.

      Stephen

  4. My 2 cents…

    Having been on the receiving end of many narcissistic apologies, I can say that that apology does not look genuine to me. For a normal person, it *might* qualify as a genuine apology, but there are three major problems with it:

    1. It has several “blaming” statements… “Frustrated by some of your behaviors”, “you’ve chosen to shut me out”. A real apology includes no caveats, no fine print. A true apology does not try to act you are at least PARTIALLY responsible for their behavior.

    2. The apology has no empathy. No seeking to understand your feelings. He casually throws out there something like, “I don’t know why you’re acting this way but call me.” How about instead, just asking you why? No blame, no “call me”s. Just, “I know you are upset at me. Can you tell me some of the reasons, so I can understand why you feel angry at me.” It’s a conversation this person would probably isn’t really interested in having, except if he can use it to blame you.

    3. It doesn’t address the root issue. He’s apologizing that he called you when he was drunk to give you a piece of his mind, but not that he meant to give you a piece of his mind. (And still would.) So even if you forgive that, nothing has been solved.

    In the end, it does what narcissistic apologies always do: Shifts the blame firmly off the narcissist’s shoulders and back on yours. After all, HE apologized, didn’t he? So if you’re still upset, that’s YOUR problem! YOU’RE the unreasonable one here, not him! Or at least, that’s what he’ll tell everybody.

    But what do I know? Go with your gut, man. You know your brother better than any of us do!

    Kind Regards,
    Clint

    • Hi Clint!

      You are absolutely correct with all your comments. He is definitely trying to shift the blame for our impasse back onto me. “I called you when I was drunk and said a few hurtful things and now you shut me out? What’s the big deal? Just get over it!”

      You’re right, there is no empathy in his apology. No attempt to understand my feelings or why I “shut him out”. The reason there isn’t any empathy is because he’s incapable of empathy, at least towards me. Expecting him to empathetic towards me is like expecting him to swim across the Atlantic: It’s not going to happen.

      Oh, I’m sure he’s slandering me to anyone that brings up why they haven’t seen me in a while in his circle of friends. That’s a given. He can’t accept the responsibility for his failings, so I, the family scapegoat, get to shoulder the responsibility for his failings. It’s how my family rolls. Something wrong? It’s Stephen’s fault!

      My gut tells me I don’t want a relationship with him. My gut is also telling me that this is the best he can do when it comes to an apology. He’s not capable of offering a true apology. The two put together make me think I might entertain him for 20 min at a Starbucks and hear him out. I’m sure he would tell me how much he ‘loves’ me and how much he ‘misses’ me, etc, all the while telling me how irrational and cruel I am for shutting him out. Here’s how I see it ending: after giving him his 20 minutes, I stand up, tell him I have no interest in having a relationship with him at this time, and walk out.

      The other option would be to just block all contact from him. I have been leaving a door open through email and phone, but perhaps it’s time to close that door as well. Truthfully, I’m growing weary of the calls / texts / emails from family that keep bringing the past back.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Clint, and best wishes on your healing journey!

      Stephen

      PS: I promise to get to your email in the next few days!

  5. Hi,

    I’m new to this blog, and very glad I’ve found it. I’ve read your earlier postings about your brother. Thank you for inviting our comments. My thought is that it isn’t a genuine, heartfelt apology that one would like to receive to feel truly apologized to. However, it is likely the best he can do … which makes this tough. As someone who has faced similar “apologies” from my sister, that I accepted and then been hurt even more, I’m no expert! But I do hold out hope for a better relationship with my sister – not only because I do believe that she wants a better relationship with me, but also because I’m an optimistic, loving person who would naturally respond kindly to an apology or request for communication. By ignoring her request makes me someone I’m not – which is one of the things I resent the most about interacting with her and my father.

    My sense is that your brother truly wants a better relationship with you, however he is in the dark and limited as to how to authentically connect with you. It’s really up to you to decide how much time/effort you want to put towards trying to have a healthier relationship with him. He may be able to understand some of the dynamics if you come at it in an intellectual way – with information or knowledge about what growing up with a narcississtic parent did to you *and him* and how it has damaged the bond between the two of you – and this could be a place to start the conversation and possible healing. Maybe genuinelly “getting it” at a heartfelt level could come someday down the road.

    Having said that, I go no more than 2 rounds with my sister … if it’s more of the same invalidating, self-centered, self-pity, twisted blaming, I-don’t-even-have-words-to-describe what she does crap, I end the call. Once in a blue moon I feel like she hears something, or gets something… kinda, sorta … I also know that she’s a product of the same sick father that I had, so I have tremendous compassion for her interpersonal challanges as well – whether as the Golden Child she believes she has any or not!

    Just a few thoughts on your situation.

    Beth

    • Hi Beth and welcome!

      I’m sorry that you had to endure a narcissistic upbringing as well. It’s a horrible way to grow up that I wouldn’t wish on anyone. Kudos to you for surviving!

      You are completely correct: The apology he offered is “the best he can do”. The ball has been thrown into my court. Knowing of his deficiencies, do I offer him a chance to explain himself? This is the point where I struggle. My gut is telling me “no”. I don’t need to put myself back into the dysfunctional world that is my family. I often look at it with the view of “would I have a relationship with him if he wasn’t family?” The answer is always no.

      Your comment about accepting “apologies” only to get hurt worse in the end is very apt. That’s happened to me numerous times. All apologies from narcissists are only attempts to regain control of the situation. If I re engage him, he wins. He has some semblance of a relationship with me again. Since he has no idea what a healthy relationship is, having any sort of relationship will do. Having a relationship of any sort with him will relieve his frustration over our estrangement, but won’t do anything for me. If anything it will only serve to bring back the past once again.

      I like your positive attitude that their may be some glimmer of hope if I happen to present things ‘just so’ and say things ‘just right’. I’ve carried that hope, too, but it’s fading fast. Hasn’t that been where I’ve been with family my entire life? Having to negotiate a minefield blindfolded and if for some reason things blow up it’s my fault because I didn’t present my sentiments correctly? It’s the same drama played out again and again. The flipside is I already had this discussion with him, attempting to point out the differences in our childhoods and what I believe to be the issues related to our narcissistic upbringing. The result? He barely talked to me for 5 months and then called me drunk one night (the night he’s apologizing for in his email) and told me how wrong I was and how I had hurt his feelings and I owed him an apology. I originally was hoping that he would let me live with my reality, but his programming says that letting me live with an alternate reality to his is not possible.

      Thanks for your thoughts, Beth, and thank you for stopping by!

      Best wishes on your healing journey,

      Stephen

    • Exactly right, SAWG.

      If I stop playing the doormat role, they become very frustrated. “What’s up with Stephen? I guess I need to offer up some sort of apology…” Apologies are not offered in a truly contrite manner, they are only offered as a means to regain control of the situation. My family is truly incapable of apologizing to me. It sucks, honestly.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting, SAWG!

      Stephen

  6. That is a narcissists apology for sure.

    It basically leaves the recipient feeling like they are the one doing something wrong for shutting the door on abusive family.

    • Completely agree, Les.

      Yes, he’s redirecting the issue back onto me because I won’t “just get over it”. He honestly doesn’t think he did anything wrong. As I said previously: Unfortunately, this apology is about the best he can do, given his limitations. It’s sad, honestly.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Les, and I hope your healing journey is going marvelously!

      Stephen

  7. Hi Stephen,
    I’m catching up reading after a couple of months of “life happenings” 🙂
    I guess I’ll know what happened with your brother if I keep reading the coming posts.
    My opinion is: he’ll feel better and free of guilt is you contact him. He’ll feel like you are over all the problems you have together and will ignore anything you say to him. (I hope you understand what I mean!)
    I have no idea why some people act that way!!
    hugs 🙂

    • Hi Paola!

      Welcome back! I hope you are well 🙂

      Yes, you are spot on with your remarks. My brother needs to check the box next to “Have relationship with brother” in his good guy checklist. It doesn’t matter what the relationship may be, as long as there is some sort of relationship. If I dare try to bring up any of my concerns, I will immediately be shut down and told that “he doesn’t understand what my issues are”.

      If I ever want to have a relationship with him again, it will have to be on his terms, with me knowing full well that we will never have what I would constitute as a brotherly relationship, and for me to expect such a relationship is unreasonable.

      Thanks for your comments Paola!

      Stephen

      • 🙂 Some people, right? It’s hard to understand their behavior when in our minds and hearts we feel that those persons are supposed to love us.
        At least, that was my case, I couldn’t see because I couldn’t accept what I was seeing.
        So painful!
        Hugs 🙂

  8. This is interesting, and a very fine line. I’m going to step out on a limb by myself here, I do think this qualifies as an apology, as it does convey both regret and responsibility, and it is specific: he apologized for upsetting you, then admitted he was unkind to you and apologized for that as well. However, that having been said, only your intuition and history can help you determine whether or not it was genuine and/or motivated by any compassion for you, Stephen. Being a GC, it may have been motivated by his sense of order (which requires some narcissistic supply from his brother too) which may have been disrupted recently if he is drinking to excess–perhaps he challenged your mother on some point and saw the beast. Remember that although he may never understand the concept of reciprocating, there will always be situations in his life where he feels that he needs you and YOU are absent, which he pins on you as being “your choice”–which it is, for going N/C comes with accepting the repercussions from your decision to do so, good bad, or otherwise. Finally, do recall that the silent treatment is a familiar weapon in a narcissist’s arsenal, particularly to convey disapproval or punish the victim. Therefore, I am sure that he has seen your mom employ it when she does not get compliance or wishes to send a message. But if the silent treatment is employed against the narcissist or GC, they will inevitably assume that it is because of something they said or have done that you disapproved of–since that is how they operate, that is how they perceive. So if and when you try to go N/C with golden children siblings, bear in mind that they often will mistake N/C for the silent treatment and eventually inquire. It is easy to see how they could.

    FWIW, it is my personal belief that any apology that I issue or receive should convey both remorse and responsibility, as well as being specific to the misdeed, so by my way of thinking, your brother’s email leaves a check-mark by all three. Your brother admitted that he was drunk, which is certainly an explanation for his lapse in judgment, for we have all been intoxicated and said and done the things that one says and does when one is impaired. And no offense, Stephen, your argument is correct, but a little perspective here–he didn’t kill anyone with a vehicle, he made a bunch of insensitive phone calls. And he also confessed that your actions were frustrating to him, so he shared why that may have had an effect on him in his condition. However, I have to point out that he did not evade responsibility for his actions, drunk, frustrated, or otherwise–he apologized. If he had used being upset or intoxicated as an excuse NOT to give you an apology, I could see your point. But here again, Stephen, I don’t presume to know your brother, so you are the best judge of his veracity, not me. I am only saying that I believe the required sentiment is definitely there; whether or not he actually meant the words he typed is beyond my reckoning.

    My $0.02.

    Peace.

    • Hi Popeye, and welcome!

      I certainly appreciate your comments and perspective. The truth is, I agree with you. Taken out of context, my brother’s message is very close to a true apology. That’s why I said that I felt that “this is the best he can do”. I’m not sure if you’ve read the entire dialogue with my brother since he called me the night he was drunk to give me a piece of his mind; it’s all under the “Conversations with the Golden Child” category. My brother has gone from telling me “I still feel I needed to say what I said that night” through an email (without admitting he was drunk), to phone bombing me 11 times in the middle of the night on my birthday, to this almost apology some 18 months later. 18 months! Why should it take 18 months to apologize? As an example, if I waited 18 months to apologize to someone I was dating for something I did, do you think she would just magically take me back? Doubtful. I would think she would have moved on with her life and not been waiting around for me to come to my senses. If she was waiting around for me, it would be a red flag in my book; a sign of codependency.

      Also, waiting 18 months to apologize shows, in my mind, that the apology truly isn’t genuine. If it was genuine, why did it take 18 months for him to offer his apology? And what about all the other times he was rude to me in the interim? Is he not even aware he was being rude to me? The 11 call middle of the night phone bomb really took the cake, and he doesn’t even see it as an issue and isn’t even aware that it was insensitive. Does he treat all his friends to an 11 call middle of the night phone bomb on their birthday, or am I the only one that gets such treatment because I’m his brother and have to ‘accept’ such behavior because he’s family?

      Your point about the silent treatment is very apt. Yes, it’s one of the main weapons in the narcissist’s toolbox. I can see how my family perceives my silence as giving them the silent treatment. However, worrying about their perceptions is not my issue. I have no control over how they perceive my behavior. This is evidenced in how they perceived my entire existence as being a huge black mark on the family image for my entire life. Worrying about their perceptions of me is a huge waste of time and energy (and also codependent). I am who I am, if they don’t like it, that’s their issue, not mine.

      Yes, it is my choice to go no contact with my family, and you’re right, I have to accept the repercussions of my choice. But having that choice means I get to take my power back. I’m not obligated to have a relationship with them just because they are blood. I don’t have to relinquish my identity in order to support the family image. I don’t have to accept the scapegoat role any longer if I choose not to. It’s up to me.

      Thank you for your comments, Popeye! I certainly appreciate them and it helps me to look at things from a bit of a different angle.

      Stephen

  9. Having been on the receiving end of many non apologies, I struggle badly to distinguish sincere apologies from the one that are simply made to get you back in your “proper” place. Reading the comments has been very enlightening. Man it must be so hard loosing the scapegoat. Who will they blame now when somethings gone wrong? Those poor people… (If you detect sarcasm or cynism in this paragraph, you may keep it.)

    What I do think this apology lacks is accountability for hurting you. Your brother said he has been drunk and has cut back. However that is only the reason for this specific incidence of violating your boundaries. He grudgingly acknowledges in passing the he has upset you and then goes on to talk about things that upset him. Its not like he owes you something for upsetting you, its all about him and his needs. The issues that he felt it right under ANY circumstances whatsoever to violate your boundaries and needs to reflect on what the f is wrong with him for doing so is very pointedly NOT verbalised and I dare say he does not think about it either.

    Yes this may be the best he can do. He means well in other words… For himself… In such abusive situations often the sentence “Hitler only meant well too” is invoked and as much as I loathe to go to that place of arguing it does hold merrit. Meaning well is not a virtue if the execution is consistently sloppy and the oh so well meaning person suddenly does not mean well enough to improve performance. The best we can do is not a static thing. We can increase our skills and with such training the best we can do will be better than the best we did a day, a week, a month, a year, a decade ago. For him the best he can do is an excuse to not improve, work on himself, hone his interpersonal skills and that’s where things become toxic.

    • HI Stranger!

      All very apt analysis! Thank you!

      Yes, losing the scapegoat is not something that my family wants to endure. It’s just not acceptable, so they must pull out the stops and offer up some sort of half apology to get me back in line. My mother and my brother have both made attempts, although my brother’s attempts are closer to genuine then my mother’s attempts could ever hope to be. It’s a shame that it doesn’t work anymore (yes, there’s sarcasm there, too ;))

      Agreed on the accountability part. He doesn’t truly feel he did anything wrong, other than getting drunk and calling me to share his truths with me and set me straight. What’s more troublesome is that he spent the majority of the time since the phone call incident and this most recent ‘apology’ justifying his behavior the night of the phone call. So the truth is, he feels justified in his behavior, even though he was drunk and ‘probably could have said things differently’. The only apology that’s here is that he was drunk, and there’s no apology for what was said. Apologizing for hurting someone is not really an apology. A true apology involves self reflection as to the WHY you hurt someone. It’s like if he stabbed me with a knife and said “Sorry that I hurt you” without ever acknowledging that he was out of line for stabbing me in the first place!

      He totally doesn’t want to reflect on what might be wrong with him. Anytime I’ve brought up our family dysfunction in the past with him, he will immediately shut me down, often saying things like “Never say that again!”. In his mind, it’s my issue and mine alone, and he’s not affected by it. The family environment worked for him, so what’s my problem?

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

      Stephen

      • I have a hunch your brother does not feel justified for what he did and deep down knows it. Hence his justifications are not really aimed at you but towards the traitorous part of him that lets him know what a shitty thing that was to do. My mother does this. Sometimes I feel she only needs an empty canvas to paint all her monologues on, all this intense hate of who she is and what she went through and not wanting to face the truth. This canvas has to be another warm body for some strange reason. Like with many abusive former partners of mine it doesn’t seem they are talking to me, but their own past, their experiences, people they had issues with, somehow expecting us to absolve them for it. But we can not make their self hate go away. It is emotionally sick to expect other people can do this. Very well hidden codependency what your brother displays imho.

        I also feel your brothers apology is not similar to the stabbing example you gave. If we met for some reason working on something and one of us stabbed the other only lightly, that apology would be enough IMHO. Working under certain conditions stuff like that happens and you need to be ready for it. If its a deep wound there obviously need to be medical attention given to the wound, which for me it part of the apology, seeing the pain that was inflicted for what it is. Mentioning pain but not acting as if there is any is then indeed going through motions without meaning it. Saying it because one has to, because its the right thing to say.
        Which is clearly evidenced by your brothers majority of text in the apology, which is “not sorry that I hurt you”, but its “look you see the knife is much sharper than expected and thats not my mistake i use a duller blade now. just believe me when I say so. It’s not like there was any trust broken here of course and the sun reflecting on the blade blinded me and do you have any idea how much my eyes hurt now? And your hand totally should not have been where it was and if you had been behaving properly, my behaving improperly would not have cause so much damage, you must be autodestructive because this is really only about who is to blame and never about anything constructive, I’m allergic to that.”

        Obviously exposing yourself to your family is akin to working with these magicans who throw knives and set things on fire. Only your family (and mine) for some twisted reason need to think of themselves as raising baby bunnies on meadows with rainbows and unicorns to sell to little kids. I can deal with hazards explained to me and with support systems on standby, but when people claim there is no hazard and thus no need to have a support system it’s when things become unsafe. The thing that messes the most with me is that everyone is always convinced the baby bunny business is what is going on. Regardless of how blood soaked and burned you show up on their doorstep.

      • HI Stranger!

        I love your baby bunny analogy! Yes, image is everything in N families, which also serves the purpose of creating disbelief in others when others are presented with something that doesn’t jive with the carefully crafted family image. It’s like getting an extra dose of underserved goodwill from others when the family cracks show up.

        I do think my brother truly believes he has nothing for which to apologize. He is so heavily programed as the golden child that he is incapable of seeing any other perspective, just like my mother. Truthfully, my brother’s and my mother’s emotional makeup are very similar, with both of them blocking out large pieces of reality in order to live in their land of delusions.

        I sometimes wonder what my mother truly thinks of her family. What sort of deluded rendition of a grand symphony she has when it comes to her orchestration of the family majesty. It would certainly be rather humorous, and sad at the same time.

        The stabbing example I gave goes to intent (motive). What was his motive in stabbing me? Was it truthfully an accident and he couldn’t help it? No, not at all. He made the decision to call me when he was drunk and give me a piece of his mind and then refused to listen to anything I had to say that might refute his position. He called to give me his monologue of “what is wrong with Stephen” and then acts frustrated that I don’t want anything to do with him, like he has some sort of right to treat me like crap and I’m just supposed to accept it. He even TOLD me he has a right to behave in such a fashion in a subsequent email after the initial phone call. The pattern has been that he originally told me he had “nothing to apologize for” initially after his phone call to now offering a half apology and dismissing his own behavior because he was drunk. So…still not accepting responsibility for his actions. Just a grandiose monologue under the guise of “help” (I only tell you how screwed up you are because I love you). Like you said, he needs a human canvas for his delusional monologue mastery.

        Thanks as always for your comments, Stranger, and best wishes on your healing journey.

        Stephen

  10. “Just get over it” – that is right. In other words, you need to forgive (that doesn’t mean condone etc and doesn’t require communicating it to your brother). This whole post is rampant with anger from nearly everyone. It isn’t doing any good. The word “just” is wrong, though. Forgiveness is hard. But it is for your spiritual health and yours alone. I’m nearly 50 and was raised by a very abusive N mother who still had me in her clutches until 2 years ago when I phoned her and told her I wanted no more to do with her. I am attending her funeral in 4 days. I have forgiven her and feel a lot of compassion for her and sadness for the tragedy that is my family. I have no ill feeling toward her. I am in a far, far better place.

    • My N mother died a couple years ago. I felt only a sense of relief. And that sense of relief and lightness has stayed with me. I understand and understood how she became what she became, but she was just walking damage. I went no contact with her years before her death. It was the healthiest choice available to me. I don’t really see myself as standing before anyone to forgive or not forgive– that’s God’s gig, in my opinion. My job is to see if I can keep that person in my life in a healthy way to any degree, or not.

      • I feel bad (a little guilty) for it…but I long for that day. No harm will come of it. I don’t want him to suffer. I just want him to be gone, so I can be free.

  11. This sounds like it could have been written by one of several covert narcs in my life. I feel like I don’t have to know the details to say, there is a desire to have you back around, but not genuine repentance beyond that.

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