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So today is my birthday - AIBU to wish my mum would F*** off?

(19 Posts)
FannyAdamsToo Sun 03-Jul-11 12:12:24

Long backstory, difficult relationship, she's gone away for the summer and for the second year running she hasn't sent a card, just a text saying 'Happy Birthday to you'. No contact from rest of family.

The problem is with all of this that the text (as it did last year) just upsets me. Instead of having a nice day, I am filled with doubt over my decision making to limit the impact she has on my life, start worrying that everything is my fault again, in keeping with the reaction of a person who has had and still has an emotionally abusive relationship with her mum.

When is enough enough?

AIBU to stop facilitating any relationship she is prepared to have with my children (if I didn't take them to her whenever she can be bothered to see them, she wouldn't see them.)

deliciousdevilwoman Sun 03-Jul-11 12:18:25

Depends.....I think I would try to pluck up the courage to confront her-either verbally or in writing about how her past and present behaviours leave you feeling, and your hurt at her lack of proactive interest in her DGC's. Bloody hard to do, I know! I never did confront/cull my mother before she became terminally ill, and I couldn't bring myself to say the things I wanted to say before she died. I ended up in private psychotherapy for almosyt 10 years. I kid you not. There was miuch to unpack and make sense of (insert no shit Sherlock icon!). Try and negotiate a different relationship with her as an adult mother-if that doesn't work, cull her. Life's too short to continue to be tortured by the ghsots of the past.
Good luck xx

FannyAdamsToo Sun 03-Jul-11 12:26:16

I did it last year - 12 months of therapy and finally, after some abusive phone calls and texts from siblings I sent 'the' letter. The abuse from siblings stopped instantly, I set out the ground rules and have spent the last year trying to facilitate a relationship between her and my children. Contact with her leaves me feeling like crap but at least it is crap on my terms and most of the time I'm ok about things and accepting of what this is.

The issue is my children - if it were just me I would have lost contact by now I think, but I still have this enormous feeling of guilt if by my not taking them to her I'm stopping them from having a relationship. The rational side of me thinks that given my story, they aren't going to benefit from seeing her really, but they do love going to see her and why should they miss out just becasue it upsets me.

Aaarggghh. I hate feeling like this and thinking about this bloody woman.

The problem is that I find it really hard to trust my instinct/judgement because I am so insecure after being brought up by her. I get the logic but it is so hard to think straight.

Rockerchic Sun 03-Jul-11 12:40:35

You should not feel bad this is not your doing this is your mom doing this and your siblings,don't let them ruin another birthday for you.
I would sever contact if it was me,I certainly don't need people like that in my life or my DD.
Wishing you a happy happy birthday

cherryteat Sun 03-Jul-11 12:44:35

happy birthday fanny!
I am sorry you're having Shitty thoughts on your special day.
I have a very damaged relationship with my mum and like you I find it hard to have faith in my convictions based on an upbringing of chaos & emotional abuse.
I have chosen to have no contact now, in order to protect myself & my family. My life is much calmer without her in it, although there is always the threat of her bursting in at any time!
Is she good with your DCs? mine cannot be trusted to behave civilly around children & has no qualms in telling children that they are going to he'll unless they become 'saved'. There are other issues with her behaviour, Plus she cannot be relied upon to keep her temper under wraps so I have made the decision that my family will be better off without her in Our lives

FannyAdamsToo Sun 03-Jul-11 12:45:00

Thanks!

Curiousmama Sun 03-Jul-11 12:47:12

Agree I'd sever contact. You didn't choose her as your 'mum' she just happens to be. She's a shit gran. It's up to her to make the effort imo.

Happy birthday.

cherryteat Sun 03-Jul-11 12:47:28

*going to Hell not he'll .

Curiousmama Sun 03-Jul-11 12:48:08

Blimey cherryteat no wonder you're out of it shock Good for you.

FannyAdamsToo Sun 03-Jul-11 12:52:30

This is the thing - My DCs love her and she's great with them - it's me she has issue with IYSWIM. This is why I find this so fabulously difficult. I have always been labelled as being a bad person - she says I always punish her. The biggest issue for me personally is that if I call it quits because I don't want any more of this, want a simpler, easier, less emotional and upsetting existence then I may technically actually be punishing her which gives her a nice compartment to put this into - 'see, she's punishing me - this is what she's like'.

The fact that she bahaves craply for a while before I reduce contact in most instances is not seen/acknowledged.

ddubsgirl Sun 03-Jul-11 13:09:20

happy birthday x

Niecie Sun 03-Jul-11 13:25:50

I can see your worry but Fanny, if you don't see her or have contact with her, what does it matter what she thinks of you? By cutting her off you don't need to care about what she say about you.

Your children may love her but how old are they? Are they old enough to know how badly you have been treated because if they are, I bet they wouldn't feel the same about her either.

If you gut feeling is that you need to put some distance between you and your mother, then trust it. I am sure you didn't just pluck that idea out of thin air, your relationship, or lack of it justifies you putting the distance between you. It doesn't sound like your mother is that bothered about your children if she never initiates contact anyway - I think they need protecting from her actually. I suspect her indifference will eventually end up with them being hurt.

But forget all this for now if you possibly can, distract yourself by doing something nice and have a Happy Birthday!!! smile

Curiousmama Sun 03-Jul-11 13:48:46

So have you ever had the talk with her?

FannyAdamsToo Sun 03-Jul-11 15:19:01

No - I don't feel able to. I feel like I gave everything I had in the letter. It wasn't really acknowledged. The letter was really heart felt- more this is how I would like my life and our relationship to be rather than a slagging off session. The outcome has been that my siblings have cut contact with me. I don't really want to give any more, she's taken enough.

cherryteat Sun 03-Jul-11 18:33:17

happy birthday fanny!
I am sorry you're having Shitty thoughts on your special day.
I have a very damaged relationship with my mum and like you I find it hard to have faith in my convictions based on an upbringing of chaos & emotional abuse.
I have chosen to have no contact now, in order to protect myself & my family. My life is much calmer without her in it, although there is always the threat of her bursting in at any time!
Is she good with your DCs? mine cannot be trusted to behave civilly around children & has no qualms in telling children that they are going to he'll unless they become 'saved'. There are other issues with her behaviour, Plus she cannot be relied upon to keep her temper under wraps so I have made the decision that my family will be better off without her in Our lives

cherryteat Sun 03-Jul-11 18:39:27

sorry weird re-post, phone issues. Fanny if having her around has a detrimental effect on your mental & emotional health then your feelings are valid whether her behaviour is currently acceptable or not. If having her in your life makes you feel bad that will have an effect on your children and that's not your fault.
Curiousmama: it has taken nearly 40 years for me to have the strength to let her go but I do feel 'lighter' because of it!

Curiousmama Sun 03-Jul-11 19:20:39

sad How rude of her not to acknowledge your letter. And your siblings!!
Is there any reason for jealousy? Not that there's ever any reason but do you think they could be?

40 years cherryteat!! Glad it's having a positive effect on you though smile

FannyAdamsToo Sun 03-Jul-11 19:35:05

Long backstory but she is incredibly insecure (adopted, never dealt with things, 3 marriages, four kids/3dads). Therapist suggested her transference of anger onto me - I'm the eldest and this kind of makes sense.

As siblings we've been taught to eliminate the naughty sibling out of our lives, so for the last few years I have seriously been in the bad books so the others are complying- I once read a quote on families which said that the topic of discussion when one member is absent is the absentee - that pretty much sums it up for us.

The thing for me is that I just want to look after my kids, make a good wife, do my best and be happy. Don't want the games or rejection or the pain really. And certainly don't want to feel shit on my birthday.

mycatthinksshesatiger Sun 03-Jul-11 19:47:22

fannyadams I so feel for you....there is something particularly awful about the depth of the realisation that our mothers will never loves us unconditionally on our birthdays. Your Mum and family sounds v. much like mine, and I totally get that it hurts more on birthdays. It's the one day they should remember us, the one day we should feel a little bit special to the person who brought us into the world. yet all it does is serve to prove how crap they are as parents.

All I got for my 40th was a phone call the day before asking if it was indeed my 40th (like she couldn't remember what year I was born!). When I said yes, she complained about how old that made her feel and made it all about her of course. It was a turning point for me. I spent the whole day with no contact from parents or siblings, no cards or pressies from my birth family and convinced myself I must be a dreadful person. Four years of therapy later I've realised it's just the dynamics of being the scapegoat, bottom of the pile.

But like you're finding, walking away is so hard, because it makes you the bad guy, the source of all the family's troubles, and worst of all deprives your DC of a relationship that to them feels ok. It's so hard but sometimes I think it's the only way to actually be able to finally be you, and not living in other people's shadows or constantly dreading the phone ringing etc.

And Happy Birthday by the way! xx

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