The Narcissistic Sibling

I realized recently that my older sister has a narcissistic type of personality disorder. I’m not a psychologist or psychiatrist, but I’m reasonably intelligent and have a medical background, a good friend with a narcissistic mother and have read about it a lot.

The first really odd thing I remember happening is when she left me high and dry as my ride to our cousin’s wedding in Pennsylvania. 

Sister love
Not my cousin’s wedding, since I’m actually there, far left.

Right before the wedding, I happened to be in Ocean City, MD with a couple of friends, and she was at college in Salisbury, MD.  We arranged beforehand to meet at her dorm room so we could drive up together. This is in 1986, no cell phones, so this is common practice. My friends dropped me off at the campus and I walked to her dorm room and she was?…nowhere to be found. Gone. Absconded. I’m very conscientious about time, so am never late, but she left me there and didn’t care what happened. For once in her life, she left early.

I had no phone number for my aunt or cousin and my mother was already there. I didn’t know where to go. And I didn’t have the number for my friends’ condo in OC, but even if I had, they would have been at the beach, not waiting for me to call for yet another ride. 

This was traumatic, I’d been literally abandoned. I didn’t have much money, I was a teenager. I ended up going out to the main road and hitchhiking back to Ocean City, where I eventually found my friends and wasn’t murdered by the guy who picked me up, thank God!

The worst part was that, #1 I missed the wedding. #2 She blamed Me. I don’t know what she said, probably that I didn’t show up at the dorm? Since she was there and I wasn’t, they took her side. I was the black sheep. She’s a really good liar. My mother and other sisters wouldn’t believe me. I missed a wedding which I was really looking forward to. My cousin was, I’m sure, very hurt. 

And since, everyone’s looked at me a little funny, especially my aunt and cousin. They still do, 30+ years later.


This is how narcissistics manipulate others so they can ruin lives. Here’s something from a blog I found really interesting and helpful, because the betrayal from the other “normal” relatives is very devastating. The second one really reminds me of my mother.

Why Do Family Members Align With the Narcissist?

-The narcissist appears to have power. They call the shots, command attention, control decision making and extract compliance from others. They are defective ‘alpha dogs’. Those who go along with this power grab hope to share in the power – or at least not be targeted for abuse.

-Fear of facing ‘the awful truth’ about family or oneself, and having to do something about it, leads to minimizing or denying the existence of the problem. Faced with the potential of being attacked and rejected, and the general upheaval that can stem from taking responsibility for admitting the truth, many narcissist supporters will choose to ‘look the other way’, at tremendous cost to themselves and the family.


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