In my previous post, I wrote about how I've finally been able to let go....no longer obsessing over my n-dad...no longer controlled by guilt or by him.
However, I'm not "cured" or healed.
The legacy of his narcissistic parenting lives on. This came as a revelation yesterday. I'd failed to make a connection - once again! - to a current problem and the past.
Now that I'm job hunting, after staying home to raise my family and manage the affairs of my father, I'm in crisis. I've wasted a lot of time attempting an ill-conceived mid-career transition...too ready to abandon the skills and experience I acquired in my previous career...one I enjoyed. I lack focus, clarity and confidence.
When I see a job I'd like, I think "Oh, they won't want me," even if the job is a more junior position than the one I held before. It seems as if I'm unable to look critically at a position and ask myself, "Do you really want it? Is it a good fit for you?" My husband says I undervalue my experience. To an astonishing degree. An old co-worker wondered why I wasn't playing up certain successes and had to remind me of my contributions to the company.
This isn't anything new. I've always undervalued myself in the workplace.
Why? Why do I do this? I'm pretty sure I have my n-father to thank. Whenever I accomplished anything...in life, at school, at work...and I made the mistake of telling him about it, he'd say, "Who do you think you are?" and warn me about getting too big for my britches. Any success on my part was met with derision. If I disagreed with him, for example, about politics and cited something I'd learned in class, he'd say, "You think you know everything just because you're going to college. Well, you're a nobody and don't you forget it."
Who could forget that message?
Obviously, that one sunk as deep and fast as an alien probe and is reactivated every time confidence is called for!
The revelation? Letting go is not the same, unfortunately, as overcoming the psychological fallout of the narcissistic parent.