my mother-ugh!

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by antsmom, Jan 19, 2007.

  1. Sunlight

    Sunlight Active Member

    last night when my mom got to the party, my cousin who was helping throw the party for her dad...asked my mom why none of her kids were there. she told her to call and tell us to come. My mom had to tell her that she had not told us about the party.

    my cousin stood by my mom while my mom called a few of us on the phone. no one was home but one sister. so no one could come. she left a message on my machine telling me she was standing next to my cousin and that I should come to the party. I was stunned to hear her say at the end of her message:
    "I'm sorry"

    I got the message this morning when I checked home messages. I never heard her say those words. I feel sorry for her in a way. she is missing out on 7 great kids. kids who love to be together and enjoy emailing and phoning each other all the time.

    maybe she has learned something from this episode.
    Either way, I have too learned to let go a bit more from her hold given the past few weeks occurrences.

    thanks so much for all your understanding!
  2. hearthope

    hearthope New Member

    Janet~ sorry your mom is so bitter
    She will be a lonely soul, it only causes you pain to deal with her~I would place myself out of harm's way.
    Sorry you guys missed the party!
  3. rejectedmom

    rejectedmom New Member

    Janet, I had an aunt who frequently was like your mom. Caustic. When her husband died in their sixties none of her kids would let her live with them and she didn't have enough to live alone. So my father let her live with him and told her that as long as he and my mother were alive she had a place to free. Then my dad died and my mother felt that she had to honor his promise. This woman made my mother miserable for more than twenty years. Yes twenty years rent free! My aunt only paid half the phone bill and half the groceries. My poor mom would spend months away from her own home as a result. Finally my mother could take no more and she and my sister were looking for a mother/daughter house when mother died suddenly.

    Now the interesting part. My cousins felt that WE nieces and nephews had an obligation to allow my aunt to live in my mother's town house rent free fro the remainder of her life! When we said no because she was senile, half blind, had fainting spells and had repeatedly left the gas stove on, my cousin screamed at me for the better part of an hour on the day after I buried my mom. In the weeks that followed his family stole things from my mother's house because we allowed them access to the townhouse. We let my aunt stay there for a short while and they had keys. These are all upper middle class people with lots of money yet they took mirrors off the walls took every silk flower arrangement took every gift they had ever given my mother and stole antique china pieces from her hutch. My cousin who had yelled at me ended up taking his mom into his home against his wife's wishes. It only lasted 2 months and then they put her in a nursing home. She died three years later. He and his sister who only live ten minutes from each other are no longer on speaking terms as a result. I personally haven't spoken to my cousin since and I didn't go to my aunt's funeral. I did send flowers because I do remember some nice times with her over the years. I suggest you remove yourself every time your mother gets nasty. Stop doing things you don't really want to do when you know it isn't appreciated anyway. Do only what you truly want to do. It is OK to say "ENOUGH". In your case I think it is definitely a situation where "enough is too much". -RM
  4. guest3

    guest3 Guest

    you are not alone my parents were caring for my Nanna (93) for 5+ years and they had her removed from the house last month after being sick of her verbal abuse and manipulating. She is now with my Uncle (who only wants her $ not her) and she is a bitter nasty woman, you can only blame senility for so much.
  5. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    {{{Janet}}} The best thing you can do for yourself is love yourself unconditionally, without her input. Just because she's blood doesn't mean you owe her niceties or love.

    If there is one thing I've learned over the years of dealing with abusive family is that I didn't pick them so I don't owe them! Ugh_

    I'm glad she said she was sorry, but please keep your armor in place!
  6. amy4129

    amy4129 New Member

    My heart goes out to you. Maybe it is something in the PGH waters that our Mothers drank?- that makes them mean, caustic and hurtful. My boys even at their young age have Gram's number so to speak.
  7. ScentofCedar

    ScentofCedar New Member

    Janet, I was reading through the post where you described your mother's shenanigans with ex husband ~ and now, with boyfriend.

    There was a time when I had a therapist tell me that it looked to him like my mother and my husband might be engaging in a power/control thing ~ not with me; with each other.

    I was the designated controllee, but other than that, it had nothing to do with me.

    It was an eye opening experience, to look at the choices I had made in my life, and why, and what to do about them, or how to think or feel about them, in that light.

    Your post brought that conversation to mind.

    Another thing I find helpful is to acknowledge, not only what happens with my mother ~ but to envision what the mother I needed would have said, or done.

    That exercise frees up alot of anger that I think we keep hidden from ourselves, otherwise.

    Somehow, when our mothers abuse us, whether verbally, physically, or emotionally, we believe, on some level, that they were correct in doing that.

    The other thing that helps me is to remember that we do all do the best we know. Whichever of the strange, twisted cruelties those around us may be dishing out, consciously acknowledging that they are the acts of a cruelly twisted mentality helps us not to take the condemnation behind those words and actions with more than a grain of salt.

    I am glad your mom was taken to task in front of her relatives, and made to apologize.

  8. Sunlight

    Sunlight Active Member

    I think she made me be more forgiving of others, but also knowing I do not have to have them in my world. more apt to give them a long rope to hang themselves. she also taught to me accept abuse. in time, I have learned to remove myself from toxic people with much less pain. I can see it is her own actions, and I do not cause this to happen.

    some people are seething inside and jump down your throat even when you simply ask them how they are doing or how their life is going. give them any outlet, they take it as a way to let off steam.

    I do tend to reach out to others maybe too much and try to help them explore their own feelings, try to get them to talk about things, try to extend a spirit of sisterhood. I am so grateful for my three sisters. they love me unconditionally. the two older ones mother me and one another.

    some things you just cannot forget that happened to you, the slapping and hitting stay long. I wish she and I could have just once gone shopping together, and just once I wish I could remember her giving me a loving touch, such as holding my hand when small, hugging me or holding me in her lap. her only touches caused pain.

    My father did twice as much as he could have and he truly tried to defend and protect us. I think my mother tries to make us have partners to continue corralling us.

    I have told my sons I love them and hugged them so much. I never want to be like her. I also will never accept abuse again. even the simple verbal abuse of someone who bullies or calls you "silly" to chastize, or someone who gets angry when you are showing them you care. thankfully I have to say I have no one else in my world who inflicts that on me anymore.

    thanks for letting me share this episode. I am at peace about the outcome and glad my relatives let her know she should have included us. perhaps she will never do this again.
  9. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    My Mother grew up with a non-loving Mom and it dogged her for her lifetime. Violence was not a factor. Evidently, my
    Mother was treated a bit like Cinderella...lots of chores
    and no praise even though she was an achiever.

    Very interestingly, I have one sister who believes she was
    treated much the same. The other three siblings never had
    any awareness of "bad vibes". All four of us felt Dad's love on a daily basis.

    The sister who believes she was emotionally abused has dedicated her life to being an excessively supportive and
    hands-on Mom.

    Life is weird. I guess we'll never really understand how the variations take place in lives. As the old saying goes,
    however, "living well is the best revenge". I am glad that
    your life is now filled with joy. Hugs. DDD
  10. Sunlight

    Sunlight Active Member

    we 4 girls were treated like cinderella for sure and we reacted differently. one sis is a total sloppy person and will not clean at all no matter who sees her mess. one likes it clean but will not clean and hired a maid, my lil sis cleans only if she has company. I am an overachiever cleaner lol

    one saving thought is mom had no favorites and does not really approve of any of the 7 of us. we do laugh about that!
  11. ScentofCedar

    ScentofCedar New Member

    [ QUOTE ]

    one saving thought is mom had no favorites and does not really approve of any of the 7 of us. we do laugh about that!

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Too funny! :laugh:

    It makes all the difference in the world for us to have witnesses, to have someone to validate our perceptions of our experiences.

    I love that part about the mom not approving of any of the seven kids ~ now, you just HAVE to know that the problem there is the mom!

    I'm glad you are doing better with everything today, Janet.

  12. mattsmom27

    mattsmom27 Active Member

    Urgh! I know I already posted on this thread but I just caught up on other's replies and they are all so on the spot.
    My mother is Toxic, with a capitol T. I completely relate. I think that toxic parents are the hardest people to let go of, to have to decide to turn away from. I have struggled with it for so long, all of my life really. I have had a year or two at a time with no contact, and somehow I end up allowing myself to be sucked back in. I guess I spent alot of time kidding myself that she would realize after a year or two of no contact that to be in my life meant she needed to be an actual mother, a healthy part of my life. It never lasted, thus I know I was kidding myself. I let go of the idea of a "mother" in typical sense. That helped immensely. She simply is not capable of becoming/being what she has never been, nor desired to be. The last remaining hurtle for me is guilt. Not guilt she tries to place on me. Oh she tries but I seem to have no problem seeing that it is misplaced. It is the guilt I foolishly put on myself that is the problem. The feeling of "obligation". The "sympathy" and feeling bad for her lonely existance.
    I am back in the "she is far too toxic to be involved with" mode. I am praying I have strength to make this stick this time. It really is a dramatic difference in me and my kids day to day lives without her involved in it. There is a noticable difference in my mood and emotional state the very second the phone rings and it's her on the line, let alone if she is coming to visit etc.
    I am trying to be strong and not feel obligated to fill her lonely existance at my own or my children's expense. My extended family is so small. Not one of them have had contact with my mother in about 6 years, even the ones in town. She was not at my aunts funeral a few years ago, her own sister. She had not spoken to her for a few years prior to her passing. The reason? My aunt said a polite but firm "No, I can't help you" to one of my mothers endless requests for financial help. First no their entire lives, no rudeness etc. Just a no, I'm sorry, I can't. And 50plus years of sisterhood was thrown away by my mother. Gives you some insight into my mother's mentality of what she "really" wants people in her life for.
    That leaves only my brother and myself. My brother lives 2 hours away. He purposely had long distance taken off his phone and lied and said because of bad bills the company disallowed long distance. This was simply to give an excuse for him to not have to call her. I am the only family in town that was speaking to her. Now she has nobody. She has lost all but one friend. As of this past Christmas, this friend who has been around for more than 30 years is ready to say goodbye to my mother too. Their contact at this point is as minimal as this woman can get away with.
    What a lonely life for a woman nearing 60 years old. I know she brought it on herself and she is facing living the end of her life alone because she earned nothing more from anyone. At the same time, I end up talking myself into obligation to her as my parent.
    These things are never easy. I am glad to hear that you see your mothers issues for what they are and that you will not be doing a party for her. I am glad to hear you limit contact to what you can deal with at any given time. Sometimes that is the only thing you can do, things on YOUR terms, because it seems like if it was on HER terms, you and your family pay the price.
    Again I'm sorry about the missed party. I'm sorry that you are one of "us", the adult children of parents who don't know what "parenting" even is. You have become a mother who knows better from not having what you needed from your mother. Sad roots to your loving mothering, but a gift to your children that you went BEYOND what you were shown and gave and continue to give a true mothers love and attention.
    You have alot to be proud of! Stay strong.

  13. OTE

    OTE Guest

    Mine has a lot in common with yours though mine isn't quite as toxic, but controlling, negative, etc...oh yea! Mind you, I'm not complaining because I cut mine off a couple of years ago and my life is much more peaceful (aside from my kids LOL) since.

    I've found it helpful to think of my mother's behavior in terms of mental illness. When I finally learned what anxiety disorder is the light dawned. Doesn't make it easier to live with day to day but does explain. eg the need to control (the spanking and so forth) is anxiety based. The anxiety that something bad might happen to someone, etc if she doesn't control them. the anxiety that the party might not go well if she doesn't control it, that one of her kids or grandkids might do something embarrassing at the party is controlled by not inviting them, etc, etc. The saddest part, of course, is that she never learned a better way of coping. Mine is exactly the same age and doesn't really believe in mental illness, won't acknowledge that she might have a problem, etc, it's what she learned 70 yrs ago and can't get passed. As a child in the late 20's and 30's this is how she learned to cope with her illness. Everyone around her accomodated it and she never had to change.

    About the "sorry"... only because the cousin was standing there. Mine is also hugely anxious about how she is perceived outside the house/ family. Her kids are hugely successful..even though she doesn't think I ever was...her grandkids are perfect (ROFLMAO about that), etc, etc. So yes, if someone else is listening her whole tone changes.
  14. Sunlight

    Sunlight Active Member

    I am sure that is all so true! thanks for the light on the subject. my mom also has Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) (she does acknowledge this) and takes ativan daily for her anxiety. when we were young, she lived on valium. she also has been known to be mentally ill all her life. hence I have felt sorry for her as she seems to not be able to control her own actions.

    however she must one day realize her behaviors have chased everyone away. she has been told to seek psychiatric help time and again by her GP but refuses. he has kept her on medications for anxiety for years.
  15. OTE

    OTE Guest

    Oh Janet, mine started Valium when my father died in 65 and uses it to this day. Mine thinks the purpose of a minister is to listen to her for an hour once a week. He has assured me that he has suggested that she see a psychiatrist and a psychologist but she refuses.

    I gave up hope years ago that mine would ever face reality about her mental illness. She honestly believes, I think, that I have cut her off because I'm angry. LOL. She just won't see it at all. I am 100% certain that my mother will die believing that she did everything right and she is not ill at all. I'm not suggesting that anxiety disorder can be cured, it's a difficult illness to deal with at any time. But refusal to recognize it exists means that they don't even try to control it. If they even made an effort to examine their thought process they might make some improvements.

    Oh, and we missed the "I'm so ill" routine all the time. She cannot have a phone call or conversation without complaining about something, some pain she has. She's been predicting she's not going to see her next BD for 12 yrs now. LOL. But it's as real to her that she's dying (despite whatever the docs tell her) as if she had real pain. I think it's anxiety that she's going to be left alone to die... stemming from her own grandfather's long illness and death in a horrid nursing home in the 20's and 30's.