Going no contact with my narcissistic family was the most difficult time of my life. I was submerged in a whirlpool of tears: Would I be sucked down? Could I catch a breath? Or emerge anew?
My son’s recent high school graduation allowed me to reflect further upon the pain of leaving family to become whole, to gather strewn parts of myself and bathe them in love.
The Dance at 18
As my son and his classmates danced hula during graduation, I was keenly aware of the contrast between our lives.
At 18, I was at Level 1 in my understanding, in early stages of an eating disorder that would last eight years. Deeply insecure and confused, it would take the greater part of my life to heal from the gaping heart-wounds of family dysfunction.
My son is at Level 4 in his understanding: balanced, aware, in awe of nature. He surfs. And skateboards amid moon-illumined clouds that morph into animals within the breath of Kohala mountain wind.
He knows he is loved to the moon and back. It was obvious in his every gesture of hula, a graceful receiving and giving of spirit, flowing as blessings upon all present during the ceremony.
I Love You for Simply Existing
My son is loved simply for existing, for Be-ing. He was inoculated with unconditional love from birth. Had I not moved thousands of miles away to heal, I could not have offered a foundation that supports his ease and security in belonging. I needed that distance to be healthy – and to help him be healthy.
Not that I’m responsible for my son’s trajectory, mind you. After living with narcissism, I’m keenly aware of those delusional, evil powers run amok.
But I do know from personal experience that if we are not inoculated with unconditional love from birth, we don’t feel truly safe in our world. We can spend years healing or, conversely, living with addiction and debilitating anxieties.
Whilst I was “loved” only as extension of my narcissist’s ego, my son is loved as he is. Whilst my early development of self identity was a threat to my narcissist, my son’s growth of identity is encouraged and honoured.
It’s Toxic to Remain at All Cost
Never doubt the power of leaving a dysfunctional family and healing wounds.
Yes, it’s gritty work. It wears you down. People, especially family members, will make you wrong because they don’t understand. And they never will.
But the notion that we remain with family at all costs is toxic. Do we remain with family and enable the cover-up at the cost of our identity, our soul, our children’s wellbeing?
Or do we make the break for the sake of our life and for the sake of our children’s health?
The Journey For Your Life
Once we awaken to a power of spirit that says “no more” to family dysfunction, the real journey of love begins. It’s an ultimate journey for your life. We discover self-love and find our family of choice, the soul tribe who understands, a family who loves us for simply Be-ing.
Our love and compassion then expand to others. Our love even becomes as wide as the world.
One day soon I’ll share the reason that I went no contact. It’s a doozy.
But in this moment, I see the greatest affirmation for leaving family dysfunction in the beauty of my son.
Yes, he’ll have challenges in life, heartbreaks and triumphs.
But he will never need to recover from the wounds and trail of confusion left by narcissistic abuse. Therein lives the greatest of blessings. #BeyondNarcissism on Twitter
Once the scapegoat of her birth family, Karuna now holds out her hand to help others who have experienced narcissistic abuse and Complex PTSD. She serves as a keynote, transformational mentor and expert in mindfulness and workplace wellbeing.
Book your private sessions, trainings and events at firstname.lastname@example.org.