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Will I Ever Be Good Enough?: Healing the Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers Paperback – September 8, 2009


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Will I Ever Be Good Enough?: Healing the Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers + Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life + Children of the Self-Absorbed: A Grown-Up's Guide to Getting Over Narcissistic Parents
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 243 pages
  • Publisher: Atria Books; Reprint edition (September 8, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1439129436
  • ISBN-13: 978-1439129432
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.4 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (481 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,186 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. After 26 years of practice, therapist McBride discovered a distressing commonality with her female patients: a narcissistic mother. I had treated scores of women who shared many of the same symptoms.... oversensitivity, indecisiveness, self-consciousness, lack of self-trust, inability to succeed in relationships, lack of confidence... and a general sense of insecurity, McBride writes, and she ties these traits to growing up without a nurturing maternal figure. According to the author, as many as 1.5 million American women have narcissistic personality disorder and can be detected by their self-absorption, inability to empathize and fixation with looks and appearance. McBride presents specific steps toward recovery that daughters of any age can use as they grieve for the love and support they didn't receive, set healthy boundaries with their mothers and access an internal mother as a source of self-comforting. The author provides parenting tips as well as advice on maintaining healthy love relationships and friendships—all of which tend to be weak points of the daughters of narcissistic mothers. An excellent bibliography rounds out this revealing book, which ends on a hopeful and pragmatic note. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review

"Will I Ever Be Good Enough? illuminates a very common and unnamed wound -- the wound that results from growing up with a narcissistic mother. In this engaging book, Karyl McBride provides a clear, honest, and effective way to heal this wound and live life fully and joyfully." -- Christiane Northrup, M.D., author of Mother-Daughter Wisdom, The Wisdom of Menopause, and Women's Bodies, Women's Wisdom

"Dr. Karyl McBride has convened a fellowship of female voices to describe every flavor of experience with maternal narcissism. However marginalized from the mainstream of mother-daughter relationships you may have felt before this, you are no longer alone on the road to recovery." -- Sandy Hotchkiss, Psy.D., L.C.S.W., author of Why Is It Always About You?

"Narcissistic mothers are always there when they need you. They expect to be the center of attention, and they can be cruel if they don't get what they want. Learning how to set boundaries with narcissistic mothers is a complex challenge. Dr. McBride offers a step-by-step approach to understanding narcissism, setting limits on the abuse, and recovering from the psychological damage. This book is a must read for every woman living in the shadow of a domineering, self-focused parent." -- Nanette Gartrell, M.D., author of My Answer Is NO...If That's Okay with You

"The long-term destructive consequences that narcissistic parents have for their children are well known. Until now, however, there has been little in the way of helpful advice for those who were raised by these parents. In this insightful new book, Dr. McBride presents a detailed examination of narcissistic mothers and the harmful effects on their daughters. She also offers practical, step-by-step guidance for working through these issues. This book is a terrific resource for those women raised by narcissistic mothers and looking for strategies for change." -- W. Keith Campbell, Ph.D., author of When You Love a Man Who Loves Himself

"Will I Ever Be Good Enough? is an amazing journey out of pain. Providing true professional guidance and clarity, Dr. Karyl McBride heaps in genuine love and kindness. This book is like having an ideal therapist at your convenience, who really helps you heal self-doubt and self-rejection. Every page is milk and honey to your soul." -- Tama J. Kieves, author of This Time I Dance! Creating the Work You Love (How One Harvard Lawyer Left It All to Have It All!)

More About the Author

ABOUT KARYL MCBRIDE, PhD, LMFT www.willieverbegoodenough.com or www.karylmcbridephd.com
Author of Will I Ever Be Good Enough? Healing the Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers, Dr. Karyl McBride offers a pioneering guide to recognizing, understanding, and overcoming the debilitating impact of maternal narcissism. Her insightful approach toward the effects of mothers' narcissism on their daughters has been featured by US News & World Report, Elle, Psychology Today, Macleans, Denver Post (Bestseller's List), and Rocky Mountain News (Bestseller's List). Recently featured in: The Family Psychologist Bulletin, div. 43, The American Psychological Association and received a starred review from Publisher's Weekly. See additional press coverage at www.nevergoodenough.com and more about Dr. McBride's professional practice and experience at www.karylmcbridephd.com

Having placed a spotlight on Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD), Karyl McBride, PhD, LMFT, is now one of the most recognized experts on Narcissistic Personality Disorder in women. Dr. McBride's 29 years experience in public and private practice is crowned with 17 years of private research on women raised by narcissistic mothers. McBride's articulation of the effect of NPD on the mother-daughter relationship is also exalted in her seminars, workshops, and online forums.

Dr. McBride has extensive clinical experience in the fields of trauma, sexual abuse, domestic violence, divorce and step family therapy, marital and family therapy, EMDR, and individual adjustment issues related to anxiety, depression, and life transitions. Dr. McBride conducts forensic consulting and has served as an expert witness in numerous civil and criminal cases involving children and sexual abuse. She has nine years experience conducting sexual abuse investigations with law enforcement and has conducted training for law enforcement in the area of sexual abuse investigations. In 1996, she was invited to present her doctoral research at the International Police Research Conference in Ljubljana, Slovenia.

Customer Reviews

This was a great book and the information very helpful.
Dawn Baxter
Finally a book about narcissistic mothers that describes the subtle nature of emotional neglect and abuse and kills the myth that all mothers are benevolent!
Aurora
With this book, I can make sense of my life and understand what has caused me to feel the way I do.
NightWishFan

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

735 of 739 people found the following review helpful By D. E. Quigley on November 20, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Reading this book was an incredibly validating experience. I have never written a book review in my life but I believe that this work is essential for daughters of narcissistic mothers. I am 45 years old and have been in counseling for 4 years with a great counselor to address my mom's Narcissistic Personality Disorder. I have had difficulties in the denial and acceptance department; it seems that cognitively I know that my mother doesn't have the capacity to ever be warm, loving, or empathetic. However,I have had many instances where I just thought well maybe I am just the nutty girl and go back into denial. My counselor has spent hours upon hours discussing the harm that comes from being raised by a narcissistic mother. And, yes, I have read many books on narcissism. The difference with this book is that it is written from a first hand experience and includes very specific exchanged between the narcissistic mother and the "still" seeking daughter. In reading this book I must have said oh my God hundreds of times. I made margin notes where I wrote "yep" next to so many scenarios, feelings, yearnings, lowered self esteem, being self critical, the workaholism (I am a practicing trial attorney), and the issues with respect to brothers being treated differently. I am the only daughter and I have 3 brothers who had vastly different experiences with my mother. They are all perfect princes and I am the one that is constantly criticized and judged. For many years I have grappled with my brothers' experience versus mine and it was crazy-making. This book explains that daughters of narcissistic mothers may be subject to projection, jealousy, and envy because you are viewed as her extension (or shadow). It finally made sense. IF YOU ARE A DAUGHTER OF A NARCISSIST MOTHER THIS IS THE MOST HONEST AND FORTHRIGHT BOOK THAT I HAVE COME ACROSS AND IT IS ONE THAT I WILL USE AS A REFERENCE GUIDE FOR GROUNDING AND VALIDATION ON A REGULAR BASIS.
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240 of 244 people found the following review helpful By Aurora on October 16, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Finally a book about narcissistic mothers that describes the subtle nature of emotional neglect and abuse and kills the myth that all mothers are benevolent! It's hard to heal the narcissitic wound when it is a result of emotional neglect and put downs and there is no physical bruise or easy explanation like "my mother is an alcoholic". I've been in therapy for approx. 18 years and still struggle with a lifetime of never being good enough and still being placed in competition with my mother by her (even though she is 80). I was glad to hear that it's okay to have little or no contact with a narcissitic mother, since I've struggled with the guilt about having a mother like her and feel that her distancing herself from me is my fault and I am responsible for the relationship and for fixing it.

One section in the book that I did not agree with was the author's comments that the daughter should not show any anger or frustration toward the narcissitic mother. One important aspect of my healing was to stand up to my mother and demonstrate my separateness and that I too am accomplished. (I had never rebelled as a teenager, since it was essentially forbidden with the unspoken threat love would be withheld.) Even though this turned out to be a threat to her it was important for me to see that I have my own sense of power apart from her. I've also tried to reach out in ways trying to build bridges that would put as on equal footing. This was to no avail but these steps have been important in my trying to build the communication with her and determine I'd done everything in my power to try and make a relationship work.
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192 of 200 people found the following review helpful By B. Waugh on September 27, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Rather than an esoteric view of maternal narcissism, this author has kept it simple, concise, and very easy to read. The point-by-point outline, stringers and explanations were to put it simply, brilliant. She interjected explanations to the descriptions of what a narcissist is, and thereby gave it a more feeling touch.

I was to discover ah-ha's on each and every page, to see how the behavior of my parent impacted on my life in more ways than I would have believed possible. The pain of never feeling good enough, to beginnings of understanding that I am more than good enough has been an incredible journey. Though often fraught with potholes, backtracking and questioning my own sanity, the good doctor has brought it all around full circle via her book. Suddenly and joyously, someone finally understood! I felt validated and no longer alone on this journey.

To my mind, the chapters on healing were rich with ideas that have ripened into workable solutions that I have been applying successfully to my life; I am looking forward to the future through very different eyes.

While not a full out answer to many of the problems associated with this devastating blow to the ego of a small child, it surpasses my expectations and excites me with the possibilities. This is a book well worth reading for layman and therapists alike. For me, this was a deeply satisfying read.

D.E. Waugh
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89 of 92 people found the following review helpful By Mary on March 30, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I just received this book and I'm almost finished. A lot of it reads true to my own life. Although I don't think my mother was exceptionally cruel she was heavy with the hand and put a great deal of responsibility on me as a child. The criticism never ends. I am an overachiever but can't manage to take a compliment. My self esteem on the outside seems high but in all actuality it's in the toilet. My mother was very jealous of my relationship with my father and has never seemed to be able to be happy about any of my successes. My brother on the other hand was a prince to her and we were treated very differently and still are. I've beaten myself up until reading this book. Finally the validation I needed to deal with the pain of not being able to truly bond with my mother. My ex-boyfriend who is Borderline kept insisting that my mother was Borderline also but the more research I did I realized she was Narcissistic and this book confirmed it. It has helped me to heal, to forgive her, to stop blaming myself and to take a good look at my own behavior towards my children. I can see some of the cycle continuing and I'm working on being less critical and demanding of my own children. This book was an absolute God send and I highly recommend it. There has been an incredible weight lifted knowing that I am not unlovable but had a mother who was incapable of loving. I want to ensure that my children never have to feel that way. It's a lot of work but I catch myself now and I'm able to correct my own behavior.

I also want to say that my mother saw this book sitting on my nightstand and lost her mind, told me I was a terrible daughter, that she was not narcissistic, she was very angry with me.
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