In private, NPD parents will present to the child as either over-controlling, totally neglectful and angry, or overly kind, giving, and generous. These presentations can alternate in rapid fashion, leaving the child constantly emotionally off balance. This is, in essence, a form of mind control and torture well known to survivors of POW camps. So the child is faced with a very narrow choice of how to respond: they can choose to submit in total compliance (and so lose their identity), wait patiently until they turn eighteen and then get as far from the parent as possible and try to find healing, or through constant exposure and training, become narcissistic adults themselves. The latter child may be treated like a little prince or princess by the parent, at the expense of any other siblings who have chosen a different path of coping.
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