I, I, I, me, me, me


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I just got off the phone with my son and it has occurred to me that, although he calls every day, often twice, every phone conversation exclusively revolves around him. He never says, "So how are you?" even if he's in a friendly mood. He says, "Mom, it's me," then he launches into a long story about himself, his problems, his girlfriends, his life, his money, anything. He has no interest in anybody else in the world UNLESS it also involves someone HE knows and who affects HIM.

It gets boring.

I find myself talking ad nauseum about the same issues over and over again.

Don't get me wrong. He is my kid and I like hearing from him when he is being friendly and right now there is no undue stress to make him mean. But it would be a novel change if he talked about anything but himself...even the news (which I can't stand watching anymore) or poitics (which we disagree on) or his siblings (whom he doesn't care about) or h is job even or places he's gone (oh, that's right. He never goes anywhere).

Really, all he talks about is his life, mostly his problems.

Is this a difficult child thing? Do your difficult children talk about anything other than themselves? My PCs do. Even Sonic with autism always asks, "How are you, Mom?" and says "I love you, Mom" all the time. Or he offers up "It was busy today! Were you busy too?"


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Staff member
Reminds me of that old joke, MWM, where the couple is on a first date and the guy keeps talking and talking about himself and after a long time of this he says, "Oh, I've been talking about ME for a long time, what do YOU think about ME?"

My daughter did that for years, it was like there was no one in the room except for her, her problems and her life.......we were just the audience to it. Didn't ask about anyone, didn't offer to help if she were over for dinner, always assumed you would pay the bill if you went out for a meal....would walk right by her own daughter and not say a word...it was difficult to be around. So, I hear you, I know what that's like. I think it's a common trait with our difficult child's, to be self focused, self serving and consumed with the self.

Last summer my daughter began to change and lo and behold, the rest of us showed up in her world. It's such a spectacular shift that it is immediately noticeable if you knew her before. She is appreciative, engaged, notices others, seems genuinely interested. I don't know what happened to change her, but it's an enormous change.

It's tough to be around that, the energy exchange is only one side giving and the other side taking, so the giver is depleted, it's as if they use the energy for their own purposes. I've heard it explained that narcissists see others as "food" and when the food supply is exhausted they simply move on to a new source. Somewhat chilling.

Tanya M

Living with an attitude of gratitude
Staff member
The concept of having a meaningful conversation with my son sounds so foreign to me. I do hope that someday we might be able to do that. It's been years since I was able to talk to him without it turning into something. He's they type that if I tell him the sky is blue he will want to debate it. It's as if he has some deep seeded need to prove me wrong. I learned a long time ago to limit what I say to him, I keep it very simple.


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For mine it is almost the other way around. He is happy to chat about others or current events or what is going on back home, but trying to get out how he is doing, what he is feeling etc. is like pulling the teeth. He does talk about his life but it is mostly about some things he has done but even more so things he has seen etc. I usually just have to listen the voice, the words he chooses, what type of topics he does bring up etc. to get some answers on hoe he is actually feeling.

Last time we spoke was couple days ago when he called about something he needed to know, after sorting out that and talking a little about his last game the weather and some things going on at home and with extended family I asked how he is doing and it went about this:
"Me: So, how are you?
MyInsolentWhelp: Well, you know, 'Jack' (roommate) is ill. Rather bad cough and some fever.
Me: Oh, that is a pity. Do remember to make sure he drinks enough and wash your hands a lot and clean so you others may not get caught with it.
MIW: Yeah, we about bathing on hand sanitizer. And Jack is getting better already.
Me: Oh, that is good to hear. How about you?
MIW: Oh, I have been healthy. Doesn't feel like I would be catching this bug.
Me: That's good. How are things otherwise?
MIW: Well, 'Jane' (his girlfriend, who is doing semester abroad currently) got a chance to do this research assisting {doing this and that and in the Uni she is currently in.} Isn't that cool?
Me: Oh, that sounds exciting for her. How about you?
MIW: Well, if she gets the internship there also for summer, I think I will travel to there for couple weeks after the season and maybe again in June if she is still there. it is a cool city and would be fun to spend some time there."

And so it continues, till I get enough.


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My difficult child (when we spoke), would call and might say, "Hey, how you doing?", but never gave me a chance to answer. It was just something he thought he should ask? If I DID mention anything going on with our lives, difficult child was quick to dismiss or judge it. Always, always, always about him.

One time, when husband and our youngest son flew 1500 miles to visit him, one of the times they went out to eat. husband paid for the meal and left the tip (of course). difficult child commented to his girlfriend, Dad is always cheap. We always leave 20% for a tip if it is decent service. Did difficult child offer to add to the tip?? Guess.

Perhaps this if off topic, but MWM, your post got me mad, haha.

in a daze

Well-Known Member
Yes, they are very self absorbed. If difficult child calls me when I have not asked him to call, my heart starts racing because it's usually some crisis. Like when he called last November in a suicidal depression/panic attack and was ultimately admitted to the hospital. He almost never calls me out of the blue, like easy child will, and say, how you doing? What's going on? Although he will talk about relatives and his old neighborhood friends.

He does like to talk about his mood, and how the latest medication adjustment has affected his mental status, and how he struggles with day to day activities and tasks at work, etc. I have some compassion for him on one hand, but on the other hand I think he just has his head up his behind too much, which I thin k is indicative of his personality disorder.


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Suz, although it is annoying when your child won't answer questions about himself (my easy child won't), at least, TRUST ME, it is more likeable than a non-stop monologue about him, him, him, him and his life and nothing else. At least, I think it would probably annoy you, like it does me. Maybe not though as I'm not you...lol.

My son will talk about his anxiety, but also he has victim mentality. Why does he have such a horrible ex who causes him so much grief? He is in the GREAT minority! Most people have civil divorces. His job is so tiring. He has no money because of child support. Me, me, me.


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MWM: I'm sure I would be frustrated by endless me-talk too. And knowing myself I would lost my patience very quickly, if it would be same pity party over same topics every time. I guess that if my Insolent Whelp starts that one day I will suddenly start experiencing ringing doorbells, other coming calls I have been waiting and absolutely have to take, dogs doing something I need to intervene to or absolutely needing both my hands to whatever, when those kind of calls have lasted about two minutes

Currently calls at least last longer and I only experience sudden violent impulses towards cushions and other (usually) soft and unbreakable items after them. :D
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!8 never has anything to say. He knows I do not want to talk about his "struggles" with all the immature people he must deal with. I refuse to talk about all the things he is going to want me to buy when he gets out. 35 never calls. I do not call him. I will not hear from him until he quits drugging. 37 I hear from everyday, and we always have a good conversation.
MWM I know just what you mean, it is as though they can only focus on themselves and their problems. My sons makes it clear that he is not interested in anyone else but himself. They are just so utterly focused on themselves. Lets hope that eventually they will grow up/change and realise that the world is bigger than just their problems.


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MWM -- I hear ya! easy child's do it some. Shoot, I'm sure we all do it some. But difficult child's do tend to suck the air right out of the room with "I, I, I, Me, Me, Me" (love your thread title). Seems like a bottomless pit lined with mirrors while they plummet.