Advice needed please !

(48 Posts)
glittertree Mon 05-Aug-13 21:09:46

Advice needed I need to know if IABU or not...My sister has announced she is getting married I am delighted for her because she has wanted this for a long time but at the same time I am feeling quite emotional and frightened because my mother I haven't seen in 10 years is going to be there...
To try and not bore you all with too much detail she was emotionally and physically abusive to me as a child I grew up to feel worthless and useless she actually made my childhood a misery I would have done anything to have made her love me but she made it obvious that she disliked me by the way she treated I used to cry all the time as a child..
.to cut a very very long story short she fell out with me again and as a woman I decided that I had to protect my sanity ..we never spoke again she never ever made any contact with me over the years to sort it out ?even though she has missed out on 4 beautiful grandchildren I saw her once years ago at a funeral and she just looked me up and down and sneered at me...I felt like a little girl again...
She has an differant relationship with my sister ...
Anyway when my sister announced this i felt so sick inside because I know I am going to have to face her and the thought terrifies me i actually went off and had a cry I feel like a little girl again .
I have to go because I can't let my sister down AIBU to be feeling so emotional ...any advice on how to deal with this?

WorraLiberty Mon 05-Aug-13 21:26:40

Does your sister know exactly how being at her wedding will affect you?

glittertree Mon 05-Aug-13 21:28:50

Yes she does but would very much expect me to go !

McNewPants2013 Mon 05-Aug-13 21:31:30

Talk to your doctors, they may prescribe something to calm your nerves for the day.

I know you shouldn't have to resort to medication, but it could help

WorraLiberty Mon 05-Aug-13 21:32:36

Well if she does know exactly how it will affect you, I'm afraid she's being very selfish sad

OK, her wedding day is important to her but this (the way you feel) is way bigger to you.

I'd give the wedding a miss if I were you...maybe try to do something special together?

If she doesn't understand, then I don't think she's worth worrying about.

glittertree Mon 05-Aug-13 21:34:25

I wish I could...but then she wouldn't speak to me again either sad

Is it far enough in the future to get some counselling to help you with these issues ? It will really help for you to feel that it's not you, that your boundaries are strong and that you did the right thing

Failing that is your family chavvy enough for you to get drunk and punch her in the face? grin <joke>

{{{hugs}}} for you. I dropped my mum 20 years ago and haven't had to see her (yet!) as she was awful/abusive/alcoholic

glittertree Mon 05-Aug-13 21:44:08 family are fantasticly Jeremy Kyle ...;)

HollyBerryBush Mon 05-Aug-13 21:45:21

Are you taking a partner? or have a friendly face to lean on? Do you get along with your father?

Boardiegirl Mon 05-Aug-13 21:48:02

I agree with Worra. I do hope your sister can understand. If she is aware of what your childhood was like; and im sure she is, she should empathise with how you feel. She must be fond of you to invite you so surely she would not want you to be suffering as you are? Have a really good talk with her over a meal or coffee; you can at least sound out whether she really understands how difficult it is for you.
Good luck smile

glittertree Mon 05-Aug-13 21:49:29

Get on with my father they are separated and have a wonderful husband and fantastic's the way I know I will be feeling inside ...I suffer badly with nerves ..

glittertree Mon 05-Aug-13 21:51:15

My sister is a hot head completely the opposite from me ..we are very close but I know for sure she would take it as insult if I couldn't man up and go and would be furious with me ..

guiltyconscience Mon 05-Aug-13 21:54:55

Don't go your sister has no idea how badly this will upset you' I think you really need to tell her everything and make her realise what you went and still are going through.f you have not had counselling I think you would find it really helpful Good Luck op.

FeegleFion Mon 05-Aug-13 23:47:32

Why not browse NLP or assertiveness type books? I've bought an NLP book for my eReader and will be reading it as soon as my run of books on serial killers comes to an end.

Laurie 's counselling suggestion is an excellent one. Speak with your GP if you think you'd like to consider it as an option.

Life coaches could also be extremely helpful here.

How long have you got until the wedding? This could be your chance to change your experience. Counselling, maybe medication, use your DF, DH and DC as armor.

If you don't then want to go, don't. If your DSis is too hot-headed and self-centred to understand, meh to her not speaking to you again. I know it is harder than that but you deserve to be happy.

Sleepyhoglet Tue 06-Aug-13 01:21:38

Go, but turn up just before service starts and sit at the back.

Sleepyhoglet Tue 06-Aug-13 01:23:01

Or if possible and you have to speak to your mum, try to ignore the fact she is your mum. She is just a woman your sister knows. Don't give much away of be emotional. Just say hello and answer any questions she has as you would to a stranger.

She will probably then leave you alone for the rest of the reception.

Ouchmyhead Tue 06-Aug-13 01:41:37

See I have a different opinion. Your sister is getting married, like you said you are so happy for her and she's waited for this for a long time. It's a day all about her and her husband to be. I'm not trying to diminish the things you went through with your mother, but your sister should come first in this instance. Take a

Ouchmyhead Tue 06-Aug-13 01:44:56

Sorry I clicked send on my phone by accident!

I was saying, take a friend or partner, don't talk to her if you don't want, go to your gp to talk about anti anxiety medications, make a list of all the people who you love and care about who will be there for you to focus on. I really think you should be there for your sister, and be excited for - instead of focusing on yourself. Try helping her and getting involved in helping plan the wedding, the may relieve some of your anxiety towards it as you will have the focus on your sister and making sure she has the best day, instead of on yourself and your mum.

libertine73 Tue 06-Aug-13 01:58:46

go and have a great time. I agree if you have time, get yourself as match fit as possible, maybe you can get strong enough to feel at last like she has no power anymore, you're not that little girl anymore.

really good you can make it through it, and you come out feeling empowered, why should you miss your sisters wedding because of her?

good luck!

HairyGrotter Tue 06-Aug-13 07:49:31

Go. Power up, remember, you are a mother now, a good one. Your own mother was not, and you should pity her for being shit. You have come on leaps and bounds and have refused to make the mistakes she made, therefore you are better than her.

Take your lovely, normal, functioning family to an event full of love, over come the trauma, and show the world you are stronger for your experiences.

RedHelenB Tue 06-Aug-13 08:15:51

Sorry, I'm on the sister comes first side in this instance. I would concentrate on thinking "I am a good mother to ALL my children" every time you look at her

fedupofnamechanging Tue 06-Aug-13 09:42:34

I think that if your sister knows about the abuse then she has no business inviting a child abuser to her wedding. She especially has no business expecting you to be in the presence of someone who abused you. Sometimes in life people do have to choose sides and your sister should have chosen yours.

That said, it is hard to cut s parent off completely, so if your sister can't manage that then the least she can do is not kick off if you feel you cannot cope with being there. If she does kick off, then she is selfish and you shouldn't feel bad about putting yourself first.

If you do end up going, I would tell sis that I was unwilling to be anywhere near the woman and would blank her totally - not even glance in her direction. She can't hurt you if you refuse to engage.

Best of luck

OwlinaTree Tue 06-Aug-13 09:43:43

What a difficult situation. I am thinking that you would like to go to the wedding, and would be no question if mother was not attending.

I would suggest you try to chat to your sister about your fears, stressing how much you are looking forward to the wedding but how you are nervous about mother being there. Request that your sister doesn't sit you together etc, to make it easier on you.

On the day, arrive with someone you love and know will be supportive. Ask then not to leave your side! Wear something you feel great in. Rehearse in your head what you are going to say to mother if you do need to speak, I find this very helpful when I am meeting up with people I'm unsure about because it feels like I'm in control. Try to remain polite if possible, greet and make excuses to move on. Don't drink too much.

You will feel great if you get to the end having kept your composure and hopefully managed to enjoy your sister's day too. Good luck, families are difficult.

glittertree Tue 06-Aug-13 13:10:30

Thank you for all of your replies I will focus on my sister and her day it will be tough as my mother was awful towards me and the thought of her makes me quake but I want to see her get married ...

quoteunquote Tue 06-Aug-13 13:56:43

Do you have someone who can come with you, stand shoulder to shoulder with you through out and really understand what support you need?

If so go, but have a pre arranged plan with who ever you go with,

That if at any moment no matter what, if the situation becomes overwhelming, you leave, quickly quietly straight away, no hesitation or delays, no discussions.

Have your car parked facing outwards where it cannot get blocked in,

pre warn your sister that you will do your best to stay at the event, but if your sensibilities are that for self preservation, you will leave and she is not to worry about it.

If you have pre planned that you can disengage quickly at any point, it will take some of the pre tension out, give yourself permission to disengage when it suits YOU

Plan with your support, that if you have to go, that you will go and share a bottle of bubble (buy in advance and have on ice in the car) somewhere nice, toast your sister, toast yourself for both doing so well despite toxic parenting.

LEMisdisappointed Tue 06-Aug-13 13:58:50

Have you had any counselling to help you with your feelings about your mother? It might help you to be able to put her in a place where she can no longer make you feel bad.

glittertree Tue 06-Aug-13 14:32:06

I have tried some form of counselling but it didnt help much I am afraid's left lifelong scars as much as i try to forget ..but I am trying to put it behind me and be a better and stronger person for it ..!

oldgrandmama Tue 06-Aug-13 14:36:59

glittertree, I agree with those here who suggest seeing a sympathetic GP and getting something to tide you over ... you would probably need to take the stuff a day or two before the wedding, but it should calm you down and enable you to coast through the wedding and seeing your awful 'mother'. My GP will hand over a few valium before I have a root canal appointment with the dentist, and that's pretty small stuff, compared with what you'll be doing. I assume your husband and kids will also be attendance, and perhaps other, nice, relatives, who can all provide a loving and protecting 'praetorian guard' around you? It would be sad to miss the wedding. As for your 'mother', YOU have done nothing wrong but she sounds frightful and almost to be pitied, to have missed out on her grandchildren, through her own nasty behaviour.

Nombrechanger Tue 06-Aug-13 14:47:54

This woman has absolutely no power over you. She is NOTHING. You are much stronger than her. She is only as intimidating as you let her be.
You know this already but must remember that you are a fabulous mother now and her time to reign has long passed. Don't be intimidated by a stranger. Lock those times away in a chest and throw the chest out/burn it.

It's your time now and YOU ARE IN CHARGE.

You go to your sister's wedding and enjoy the day. Ignore strangers. You have your family to speak to. If a stranger sneers at you, they know they're intimidating you and getting pleasure from it. Don't give them the satisfaction. Just don't acknowledge them at all. If you happen to catch her eye, just smile confidently and walk on. Remember she has no power.

oldgrandmama Tue 06-Aug-13 14:54:55

Nombrechanger, brilliant reply. Glittertree, that's fantastic advice.

Crinkle77 Tue 06-Aug-13 14:57:44

I know it's difficult but you need to go and hold your head up high. You are no longer that little girl that she can bully. Make sure you have someone with you for moral support and just ignore her.

lollilou Tue 06-Aug-13 14:58:18

All the replies on this thread have brought a tear to my eye. What wonderful and supportive women you all are.

glittertree Tue 06-Aug-13 15:20:46

I agree thank you once more for such wonderful advice I shall draw strength from it... I as a child decided that when I grew up that I would never be like my mother and I am very proud to say I am nothing like her I am very close to all my children i tell them all the time I love them through the years as teenagers this drew a few groans but I never wanted them to wonder like I had I shall go and hold my head high I will see if I can get anything to calm my nerves's fine saying this but I know that I will be a bag of nerves on the day..thanks again all you lovely people

I would go, but I would speak to my sister first and ask her to ensure that I was sat as far away from this woman as possible, because you don't want to cast a shadow on HER big day. Try to get some counselling beforehand if possible and ask for coping mechanisms. The only other advice I would give, is to stay sober! I'm sure that your DH will be very supportive but the last thing you need is to have a drunken row.

Sparklymommy Tue 06-Aug-13 18:48:25

glittertree I am sorry that your relationship with your mother is so strained. However I think you would regret it if you didn't go to your sisters wedding. I agree with the previous poster who said that this should be about your sister and her soon to be husband.

On the day itself be civil to your mother. If she approaches you answer her questions politely, but don't give away how much her presence affects you.

flowers for you my dear.

TroublesomeEx Tue 06-Aug-13 19:02:32

I'm estranged from my mother. It's only been 16 months so far, but I know how much I wouldn't want to bump into her somewhere.

My background with her was similar.

If you don't go, she will have the smug satisfaction of knowing why. Go, hold your head up, don't make eye contact with her. As far as you're concerned, she's a stranger to you and your family, and one you have no interesting in knowing.

She is nothing to you. Good luck. xx

TroublesomeEx Tue 06-Aug-13 19:06:57

Haha just read Nombre's post and realised she's given the same advice but so much more powerfully.

But it's the truth.

TimeofChange Tue 06-Aug-13 19:10:34

OP: Maybe go to the wedding and reception, but not the evening do (presuming there is one).

I cannot imagine how bad it will be for you, I went to my DDs wedding and my XH, her Dad was there, but your situation is much worse.

Paint on a smile, hold your head up and good luck to you.

MumnGran Tue 06-Aug-13 19:19:59

You know OP, the very best thing you can do is to tell your children how you are feeling. From the little you have said, I suspect those "teenagers" who hated the slushy "I love you's" will be an absolute wall against this woman who doesn't deserve the title of mother.

Let your children be the strength in your backbone on the day. Look at them, and the amazing job you have done as a mother, before you look at the failure who called herself your mother.

I know how very scary those feelings are. I was still afraid of how much mine could hurt me, in my forties. But they only have the power we give them OP. So, when she looks at you with that sneer ....look her full in the eye, with your shoulders straight, because she can take nothing of what matters in your life. Nothing.
What you have, with your own family, is worth so much more than any approval she might ever have had to give.
You don't need her approval anymore.

mynameismskane Tue 06-Aug-13 19:25:53

I think you should go. Don't let your awful excuse for a mother take this away from you. Lean on your husband and children and just ignore her. If she tries to engage a conversation with you, get your husband to physically move you away and tell her no.

Remember, you are an amazing person who has made a good life despite having such a shit mother. You are strong, you have four great kids and a fantastic husband and you won - remember that. You didn't let her best you down so hold your head high and lean on your husband at the wedding. Don't let her engage your children either. If they are old enough, tell them why and just stay away from her.

mynameismskane Tue 06-Aug-13 19:27:20

Please op come back and update us once the wedding goes ahead? Is it soon?

glittertree Tue 06-Aug-13 21:06:37

Feel actually quite tearful reading these replies and it's making me feel like I can be strong is the 6th of sept I will comeback with an update...

CMP69 Tue 06-Aug-13 21:22:13

I have a horrible nasty abusive father who I mostly pretend to get on with for my DM sake as she chooses to pretend he is a human being
Get through the day however you can for your DSis, and show everyone your gorgeous family and how great a Mum you are!

CMP69 Tue 06-Aug-13 21:31:26

Also I work with a Psychologist who says counselling can actually bring back the original trauma, what is actually helpful is Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) or something similar.
Good luck, but they way forward is to stop hating, I am really trying with that xxx

IJustWoreMyTrenchcoat Tue 06-Aug-13 21:44:43

I'm really sorry you're in this situation, it must be very hard for you. I can understand you wanting to be there for your sister, but she sounds very dismissive of your feelings.

She had a very different upbringing to you and it sounds like she doesn't realise how awful things were or you, or is happy to ignore it because it doesn't directly affect her. In this way she is expecting you to be there no matter the turmoil it causes. I don't know if I could, but if you want to could you just attend the ceremony but not the wedding breakfast/reception etc. your mum may be less likely to cause a scene that way.

glittertree Tue 06-Aug-13 21:44:45

CMP69 I am just waiting to do cbt I actually can't wait as I just want to be a mentally stronger person x

CMP69 Tue 06-Aug-13 22:34:38

Good luck Glittertree, I really hope you can do it for your DSis and for you xx

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