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My mother - am at wits end.(75 Posts)
I really do give up.
Shes very controlling and a very definate narcist. Despite this we have an ok relationship... when its all going her way.
For the last few weeks shes been getting worse and worse.
Ive been getting daily phone calls nagging me about things from picking up my dog poo ( the dog is 11... i do know what im doing) to doing washing (again, ive lived out of home for over 10 years) to where i am, what im diong, who im with, why i didnt tell her i was going out etc... etc.
I have been telling her to stop nagging. but it makes no difference. My stock response is not to engage in this behaviour.
A few weeks ago she joined fb. She is not a fb user, she is friends with noone on it bar me ( she threw a strop till i added her... my sister refused) She has no pics, no friends, its not even in her proper name. Its just an account for snooping. Since then ive had daily phone calls about pics, or what ive said, or whos commented and how i know them. just going on and on. She called me sat to ask about a film i had said i was watching. she didnt know what it was, wanted to know what it was about. she had called people to ask them if they knew about said film. I l told her it needed to stop and if she didnt i would delete her.
I have now caused ww3.
Because i said that im ' talking to her like shit' and ' hate her' and she told me me and my child can fuck off. I explaiined that is a discusting thing to say and its terrible and i wont be emotionally blackmailed and the mothers day meal i had planned on hosting with all sibblings was now off. I wouldnt argue so got more and more shit thrown at me. including her husband telling me i should not tell her to fuck off. and then she said she couldnt take it anymore. this was of course after screaming at me for 45 mins.
i text her later the same day to tell her it was silly to argue. but got no response.
Ive text her today, my friend drafted the msg. she has similar mother issues. it was a friendly text, saying am i forgiven, i know you miss me, everyone is coming sunday, see you then.
she replied she didnt know and had i spoken to my siblings.
i said yes ( i hadnt, but since i only canncelled a few days ago and it is mothers day... cant see what else they would be doing.... of note was the fact noone of them had organised anything for her) and they would be here.
i got a cross text back saying i was a liar and had not. she had checked with my brother.
i said i had, i dont know what happened. and hastily text them....
turns out she has organised for them all to do something without me.
I am furrious.
I know what shes doing. its in her benefit to play us off and play the victim. I tried to sort it out sunday, and tried again today. but she clearly doesnt want to, despite me not having done anything wrong.
Im kind of at my wits end with it all and have no idea what else i can do, or how else i can deal with it.
any help much appreciated
Sounds like your DS has it right - restricts contact to twice a week but still gets invited to the mothers day event NSDM convenes hastily when she's in a strop! If the event goes ahead without you there, make sure your siblings are aware that you aren't there because you're not invited (pre-empt the likely 'choir refused to come...' drama) and try really hard to 'unwind' about it - you sound really worked up. You've behaved reasonably
apart perhaps from fibbing to her about having talked to your siblings - no need to fib! and got nowhere. Set your boundaries and stick to them. Good luck!
How do you feel about what I've suggested re cutting her out from your lives altogether?. She and her willing enabler of a H is not bringing anything at all positive into your lives.
It sounds as though your mother is having a good time here. One of the joys of old age (for some) is having the time and opportunity to torment one's adult children. It seems that your dear mama has it down to a fine art. This is a game at which you can never win, she has been perfecting her strategy for years and knows exactly how to rattle your cage.
Your only defence is to refuse to engage. Any reaction from you will encourage her so you need to disengage completely. This will probably mean going no contact...which has it's own problems and difficulties but might well be the only solution in the long term.
I am sorry you are going through this and wish I could be more positive. My relationship with my own mother was similar and after many years I decided to cut contact and have not regretted it.
thank you attilla. no, not a surprise at all. i know full well what she is like.
i also understand why shes behaving this way.
it still doesnt make it hurt less or be less emotionally exhausting.
There isnt really a correct way to deal with it, with someone like it, you are damned whatever you do. because, like you say, unless you are doing what they want, then you get shit.
Its my step dad. hes hen pecked, he says its anything for an easy life....
i am furious however that she put the whole thng on speakphone and he listened in..
thats not what you do, is it. thats the actions of someone trying to catch someone out, trying to malnipulte.
cant trust her.
Attila's excellent post describes exactly why keeping on trying, hurts and is exhausting - leading to the inexorable conclusion that it's time to stop trying, which means you can stop analysing, hoping.... Do you think you could do that?
im going to. ive given her two chances this week to draw a line under it.
im not foolish enough to expect an appology or even that she was in the wrong. so a line is the best i can hope for.
its up to her. she obviously wants this to carry on. so it can. she needs to remember ive not spoken to her for years before... and i dont need her. and thats the whole crux. she wants me to. im a grow up and dont and she cant cope with that.
She still works and isnt that old. shes 56 this year.
At least you do get the dynamics here.
Re your comments in quote marks, I have relayed my responses underneath:-
"it still doesnt make it hurt less or be less emotionally exhausting.
There isnt really a correct way to deal with it, with someone like it, you are damned whatever you do. because, like you say, unless you are doing what they want, then you get shit"
Indeed and we've had similar happen to us as well with regards to NPD relations. We were thankfully cut off.
"Its my step dad. hes hen pecked, he says its anything for an easy life...."
As I stated earlier NPD women always but always need a willing enabler to help them. This is what she has found in her own H; he cannot be let off the hook here.
"i am furious however that she put the whole thng on speakphone and he listened in.. "
Typical behaviour of such I am sorry to say
"thats not what you do, is it. thats the actions of someone trying to catch someone out, trying to malnipulte.
"cant trust her".
No trust = no relationship
You would not tolerate even a one hundredth of all this from a friend; family are really no different here.
Do consider the suggestions to read the website and book recommended.
like i said. ive done it before. for years. not spoken to her that is. two years ago i didnt talk to her for 6 months. in the end people were begging me to talk to her.
its not that im weak and unable to walk away. i can walk away quite easily.
its just, i dont want to have to, you know. this isnt how it is meant to be. But if i need to, to prove my point, again. then i will. because damn shit am i putting up with this.
right - mothers day plans for dd and i, what can i do thats cheap and lovely?
i dont tolerate it. hence being in the shit with her
www.childcare.co.uk is a website that you may be able to find childcare for Sundays.
You definitely need to disengage from her, put the answerphone on and not answer the phone when/if she rings. Tell her you will speak to her on the same terms that your sister does.
I think you are doing a dance with your mother.
She chucks a strop, you placate her.
You may as well teach a dog not to beg for food when you feed him every mealtime.
I advise you to disengage. For your sanity!!! She won't change, you may have to. X
ok, in my head im thinking, shes got till the end of the day to reply, and to come
if she doesnt, then i go no contact for a while. few months and leave her to it.
i refuse to be held to ransom over nothing.
somthing, i dont placate her.thats the thing
thats why she is cross.
the other day she started a rant about ' foreigners' i pointed out that her husbands family were ' foreigners' but that didnt go down well. so i said i wasnt going to stand and listen to racist tripe and was leaving.
she followed me out to my car, still ranting, telling me im naieve and dont know im born.
so then the rant became about me. not just foreigners. i just got in the car and drove off.
if i placated her, i wouldnt be here... it would all be good. i dont and thats why im in this situation.
Wow. Choirace this sounds so hard. I have no experience at all but I just wanted to emphathise with you and to say it's awful that you have to deal with this. I'm sure Attila is right - this is a personality disorder and you can't do anything about it apart from protect yourself.
Attila, can I ask what do you mean about the mother being at the centre of her parents' emotional world and put on a pedestal. You sound as though you know a lot about this problem. Is that how it is usually generated? Sorry for hijack but that jumped out it me.
You have to completely disenage because what you're doing with her is still engaging. You have to get off the merry go around. Any action you do either for her or towards her will be seen negatively by your mother; they are true masters as saying, "come closer so I can hurt you again". And you do and she does.
You're right in that it should not be like this at all but unfortunately for you it is. She is not going to change and it is also not your fault she is like this.
I realise that you don't want to have to walk away yet again but sometimes you have to for your own sake.
its just rubbish, isnt it, really.
I had planned this big mothers day thing, taken a day off work, brought the meat ( already in the freezer) organised the others...... got some treats in, got the present etc.... lots of effort.
i said i was cancelling after she told me dd and i could just fuck off. THEN she throws in my face how hard mothers day is for her with her mother being dead and how it hurts noone cares to make the effort. i said i did care, and had made the effort, but im not going to when im not treated with respect.
so - she beat me with the same stick that she made me drop. if that makes sense. why, just why would you even do that?
Its just totally illogical.
I have some NPD rellies; I am low contact with some and no contact with a couple more.
I feel that NPD can arise as both a part of nature and nurture hence the being placed at the centre of the emotional universe comment. Some psychologists trace NPD to early infantile neglect or abuse, and some blame over-indulgence and indiscriminate praise by parents who don't set limits on what's acceptable from their children (I could level that charge at both my ILs). Others say that NPD shows up in adolescence.
My Nan was very much the centre of her parents own universe when growing up and she also shows some of these undesirable traits of self importance and lack of empathy for others.
You are a mum too, I hope you can do something special with DD this Sunday.
I hope you're not holding your breath waiting for her to apologise and make everything all right?
She has an audience - her H - and your siblings to play off one another. In Topsy Turvy world she is the victim, she's never asked for anything nor got anything in her life, the next logical hurtful step is, oh she could have done so much with her life had she not had you, blah blah boo hoo.
Pull the phone plug metaphorically speaking. Drop FB. You've tried. Get childcare sorted for DD by April 21st.
i dont think its either of those with her.
my grandparents were lovely, and most of the time they didnt agree with how she was. my grandmother used to tell me and try and help.
i will do somethign lovely with my dd.
Of course i will.
i know she wont appolgise, i wouldnt think she would for a second. i am hoping she mans up and draws a line, but im thinking she wont because she has an audience and its in her benefit not to. because then i can be the terrible daughter who ruined her mothers day, ifswim.
If there is a nice country park or a seaside resort near you I would go and visit something like that.
It sounds exhausting and I hope your sibs know where you are coming from.
You mention her grandparents, where were your mother's parents when she was a child?.
Re present day detach and ignore; being drawn back into the game only hurts you more.
no, my grandparents.
;) her parents. they were lovely people.
apparently strict parents, 3 other siblings, she was the second child. no pedalstool nor neglect at all.
You know, i think im just going to leave it. i think id rather it not happen now ayway, it will be fraught and im not having dd be privy to that, mum might kick off and again, im not letting that happen in front of dd.
i have a headache and just want to go the bed really
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