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Dear Mum(129 Posts)
You've just left and as usual, I feel broken. Sad and guilty and hopeless and, oddly but as always, ill.
Our relationship is the most complicated and saddening thing in my life. My friends simply don't understand it, but I make a point of keeping you out of my 'real' life as much as I can, so they only see a very small side of you. DH and SIL get it, at least to some extent.
To anybody else, I think I would seem quite 2 dimensional given the limited input you get from me. But given that you don't actually seem to see me as a separate entity, rather as an extension of yourself, I don't suppose that really matters. It's a claustrophobic and stifling perspective. The disappointment whenever a situation occurs which clearly disputes this is palpable but is soon 'rewritten' and forgotten.
You consider yourself to be so 'nice' that any perceived criticism results in an extreme defensive response. I always end up feeling as if I've just booted a small puppy, no matter how light-hearted or innocuous the comment.
You are a little girl in a women's body. You consider your childish affectations to be somehow charming. I champion strong women and it pains me that the woman I should be able to look up to and respect is such a child.
Your ability to turn every topic of conversation, every achievement of mine, everything my children do, even the bloody weather onto yourself is mind blowing. I still can't quite fathom how you can be so self-deprecating and so self-obsessed at the same time.
You seem to think you are a big help. In reality, you do nothing except add another person trying to claim my full and constant attention to the mix. I'm not sure how you aren't embarrassed to just lounge on the sofa while we run around organising or clearing up after family get-togethers.
I can't hug you or tell you I love you. I turned it off during my teenage years (a very dark time at home for me) and can't turn it back on again. I hate it when you touch me.
You have lied and manipulated, and when challenged you deny everything. It's all done in your little girl, I'm just so nice persona, and it leaves me disorientated about what is real. You also make stuff up in order to appear empathetic. Or to make a point. Or to make you sound more wise. Or for a hundred other reasons. If we challenge you on it, the booted puppy makes a reappearance.
You fill every pause in conversation by telling us how much you love us or love spending time with us. This should be a wonderful thing but it feels stifling. Something about the rise in intonation at the end and the pause which suggests you're again fishing for validation (the search for validation, about everything from your clothes to your opinions, is constant and draining). Is it wonderful to see us? Can it really be wonderful for you while I'm struggling so much just to be in the same room as you? Probably not and it again means that it's not clear quite how much of it is truth.
When you're around, I can hardly breathe. My stomach is tight and there have been occasions when I've had to fight a panic attack. There is no other time when I feel like this. The only way I can cope is to switch a part of myself off when I'm with you. But your words about how much you love us are in my psyche, even though I doubt their truth, and it means that as soon as you've left I feel cripplingly guilty.
In many ways I would love to cut you out but know that I will never be able to. I wish I could find a way to allow us to get on, but I think I finally have to accept that it's never going to happen. Every single time I let my guard down I regret it. I don't know what the answer is and I'm so, so tired.
Mine's on "woe is me" atm. Had the weepy PA "I can't cope alone" phone call this morning. Apparently she might have to go back to the UK and go into a home....
(Not really.... Well, you know )
I've just replied to you on other thread, it just sounds like you're finding a level of detachment which is great.
At the moment I feel like we're in the calm before the storm! I'm reminding myself not to let my guard down.
How are you Name? Did the feared storm arrive, or are you still in a lull with your Mum?
Hi * good*
Thanks for asking... I haven't heard from mum since I last posted. All or nothing She's coming over quite soon, not for long (due to some careful crisis management last week) but I'm a bit stressed about it. I'm planning the time carefully.
How are you getting on? I've not been on so much this week so haven't had chance to check SH thread either. Hope you're ok x
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