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Facing abusive parents for the first time... at a funeral!

(11 Posts)
Rosenwyn1985 Sun 13-Mar-16 22:34:02

Advice needed!

I've finally faced the fact my step dad was sexually abusive and my mother enabled him (narcissistic, very toxic and alcoholic). I'm seeing a therapist for ptsd, anxiety etc and its been going well. Early stages but I can see improvements slowly. However a close relative has died and there will be a funeral which I'm sure they, and my drama loving sister, will attend (she was also abused but clings to them, big on denial and also alcoholic).

I'm terrified of seeing them. My hubby will support me and I know other family will too as they are very disliked. I plan to have my husband just say something like "she doesn't want to talk, please don't make trouble, it's a funeral", should they try. I'm positive my mum will, and fairly sure she'll kick off.

If I thought not attending would guarantee a lack of drama I'd avoid it but I've been asked to be there as it would mean a lot. So...How do I cope? And what should we say if they kick off? So so anxious I get panic attacks just thinking about it!

NewYearSameMe Sun 13-Mar-16 22:41:36

That sounds incredibly stressful. Would it help to make some practical plans? Things like making sure that you're not a sitting target, so park out of sight of the church and go in at the last minute. Sit at the edge of a pew at the back so that you can't be cornered. Agree with your DH (who sounds lovely) that if there are any raised voices you will simply turn and walk away to your car and, if necessary, drive off. Perhaps let some of the other family members know that you will leave abruptly if you feel anxious or frightened, so that you are not being pursued by well-meaning relatives.

champagneplanet Sun 13-Mar-16 22:52:53

Agree with NewYear, and just go to the service, don't go to the after part where the alcohol starts flowing. Stay strong.

Pannacott Sun 13-Mar-16 22:54:53

Maybe just have a clear plan in your mind, and discussed with DH, that if anything at all happens that you feel uncomfortable with, you are just going to leave. You don't have to explain to them, you don't have to negotiate with them, you can just walk away as they are speaking to you. Maybe walk over to your hosts and thank them for organising and say goodbye, then go to your car. Would that work for you?

Rosenwyn1985 Sun 13-Mar-16 22:55:10

That's a good idea about talking to family. I can't park away sadly as we've been asked to be in procession with the hearse. Hubby is lovely and is intent on screening me. I think he really wants to lay them both out (He's been quite shocked at some of the details I've finally confessed) but wouldn't. He's very relaxed and mild mannered usually! We both just want to make this as easy as possible for the adult children of the deceased you know?

It's the sitting target thing I'm worried about so I think asking some family to stay close would be good. And I know the place pretty well (sad but I've been to a fair few funerals there) so I know where I can escape if needed. I'm dreading it. I'm not mentally prepared to even see them.

jfdusdjfdn Sun 13-Mar-16 22:56:41

I was in exactly the same position as you op, my dearest dearest relative in all the world died. Sadly, I didn't go. It hurt a lot but was for the best.

Hissy Sun 13-Mar-16 23:42:49

Does the person that made these requests of you know why you are so afraid of going?

Aussiebean Mon 14-Mar-16 00:44:25

Get him to say something like

'We are here to pay respects to (deceased) You are being very disrespectful towards (Deceased family) this is not the time or the place. If you can't respect them then you should leave. If not then we will.

Then walk away.

Out their behaviour back on them.

Qwebec Mon 14-Mar-16 00:55:12

I second what everyone else said. I Just want to add that I think it is important that even if people would like you to be there (and you too probably), your well being comes first. If you think that it is more than you can handle right know, respect your limits and don't go.

MyFavouriteClintonisGeorge Mon 14-Mar-16 01:20:13

Would it be possible to go early, or even see the people you want to see at the undertakers or something? I know someone who went to the crematorium early, saw the deceased and their immediate family then left before the funeral itself, because of problems with other relatives.

Rosenwyn1985 Mon 14-Mar-16 10:37:54

Thanks everyone for the advice. I don't think not going is an option (it really would hurt someone I care about). But I like the idea of trying to escape quietly before the wake. That's if my mum etc don't leave first (as I said she likes drama so she quite often makes a big exit!). You're all right though, I need to put my health first.

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