Narcissists depend on others for their self-esteem.
When the supplies of approval and support dry up or the unwitting supplier has the temerity to ask for their own needs to be met, they are blustered, demeaned or bullied out of their requests, coming to doubt their own needs, thoughts and beliefs.
For the children of narcissistic parents, this is very destructive. They grow up in an atmosphere of power and control — and manipulation. They have been left with the damaging legacy of parental self-absorption.
For these silent victims, parental narcissism created a void where the growing child’s connection to self should be. Emotionally neglected and abused, they were forced to deny their own needs in order to be loved. As adults they find themselves playing out the scripts their parents gave them, without even understanding why.