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or is my mum?

(37 Posts)
NameyNameChanger1 Fri 14-Nov-14 23:58:13

Haven't had great relationship with my mum as an adult though were close when I was younger. No particular reason in particular so I thought, but we just were no longer so close. Thought it was normal progression, as I was an adult living my own life.

Yesterday I recieved a long email from her, the short version of which is basically that she feels pushed out by me and rejected. Reason: I have never consulted with her about life plans, I've just made decisions and told her about them after makng them. eg, applying for jobs, deciding what job to take, deciding to move to a different place (went to uni in another place so wasn't like i'd been living at home), buying a house etc.

I've always been independent and never really considered having those conversations with her. Discussed with DP of course as they affected the both of us. Me and DP have lived together a long time, met at uni. She said she expected to have been involved in the decision making.

WIBU to make decisions on my own? I think I'm not and that her expectations are a bit much especially as they were never expressed at the time of me saying I was doing the things she brought up.

Also... now i wonder if I'm supposed to start having fake 'what should I do?' conversations with her regarding our wedding (well it will be a civil partnership). We haven't yet announced it but already have the plans in place re location, ceremony, whose going to be invited etc. (she is of course on the invitation list). It's ust going to be a small registry office thing, no wedding party or anything like that, with a dinner with just family and a few close friends after. Its basically all arranged besides the actual date, want to make sure everyone's free first after we make the annoucement (soon). WIBU to not discuss these plans with her beforehand? I'd like our relatioship to be better, but now since that email I think the civil partnership thing will look like i heard what she said but still don't care enough to involve her even though it had already been decided on.

FWIW my sister still lives in the same town, never left, so she's very involved in her life, so maybe she's basing her expecations of me on that.

doorbellringer Sat 15-Nov-14 00:10:06

Can't quite put my finger on what its called but I'm the same as you. I live my life and inform her of significant event as and when needed. I consider my dh and ds first.
I'm guessing whether u want to realise it or not. Your dsis is probably the "dramatic need support person" whereas you are not. Relax don't feel obliged. Her pulling you back to obligation is not about you, more about her need to be needed or control.

Overthehillmum Sat 15-Nov-14 00:20:02

You haven't said how old you are, but my son and daughter are in their 20's, I like when they tell me things, but I never expect to be consulted or involved in any of their decisions, I respect them as adults, I gave them the tools to make good decisions growing up, and I'm there to help them, but not to make or be a deciding factor in their choices. If they decided to emigrate and told me when it was done and dusted I would be devastated but would have to accept their choices.

I find your mums email a bit odd !! So you mum is BU not you.

Iggi999 Sat 15-Nov-14 00:26:45

I'm close to my dm not because we talk about the big decisions but because we talk about the everyday ones - so we might chat about what we're having for dinner, or what shoes we are getting. Do you find you talk about these things with her?

NameyNameChanger1 Sat 15-Nov-14 00:31:43

Overthehill mum I am 34.

We don't talk about everyday things no, we talk on the phone maybe once a week and it's usually her wanting to talk about her dogs! We talk about general what me and DP have been doing at the weekend etc. She switches off when I talk about work which can be a bit difficult because the majority of what I do and DP does is work (we work together).

Emstheword Sat 15-Nov-14 00:36:11

Well I think you should realise how lucky you are that your mum wants to be part of your life. So many mums don't. Would it hurt that much to involve her a little and spend dine quality time together? Perhaps a nice afternoon tea somewhere just the two of you....you can share your wedding plans and ask her opinions on anything not fully decided upon. Just something little to make her feel wanted. If you'd ever been without a mum, you might appreciate her soft-heartedness. So YANBU, but neither are you really treating your mum as she would like, so a little compromise would go a long way IMHO.

VanGogh Sat 15-Nov-14 00:36:24

It's the wedding/civil partnership that's caused this, mark my words! She desperately wants to be an important mother of the bride and knows you're too capable and savvy to need her to take over.

I'm in a similar situation.
If, and ONLY if you want to involve her, ask her opinion on a few wedding things one evening... Like what do you think of this as a centrepiece? Etc and finish with "thanks mum, it's been nice to have a different perspective"

Sadly it's pandering but works wonders for me!

You have don't nothing wrong. I am very much like you too. Decisions made and then letting mum know!

NameyNameChanger1 Sat 15-Nov-14 00:45:13

No, she doesn't know we're getting married yet! Haven't made the announcement to family yet. That's why think that when we do, she's going to take it badly since it'll be after the email and it'll look like I hadn't listened, if you see what I mean.

Emstheword We live a long way from her so spend time together when I visit (a couple of times a year), the phone calls are supposed to be me making an effort to keep her feeling in touch with me!

bunchoffives Sat 15-Nov-14 01:00:02

Oh come on OP, its not that hard to see your mum just wants to feel a bit needed. It's quite hard to go from being a mum and your whole life revolving around your DC to feeling like you no longer have a family. (Although admittedly your DM has had quite a while to adjust).

Can't you just ask her opinion on a few things. You still don't have to do what she wants but at least she'll feel part of your life a bit more. Does she live on her own?

grocklebox Sat 15-Nov-14 01:03:31

She's reaching out to you and trying for more. Is that such an awful thing? You don't seem to have an actual issue with her, and maybe she was clumsy about it but she seems to be trying to be closer. Would it be so hard to try for a better relstionship, for both your sakes.

NameyNameChanger1 Sat 15-Nov-14 01:09:29

Yes I can tell her more. I do feel bad about the way she feels, the thing is she never expressed that she felt this way until yesterday so it's like I had no idea she wanted it and now she's saying she feels I've always left her out etc., but never said anything at the time.

Maybe I just need to say to her that she should tell me how she feels instead of keeping it to herself for years until she decides to have a go at me about it all at once.

NameyNameChanger1 Sat 15-Nov-14 01:13:48

YEs she does live on her own (unless you count the dogs!) but my sis stays over 3-4 times a week and takes her for lunch, shopping etc multiple times a week. I do think maybe she wonders why she's closer to my sister than me and wishes I'd not moved so far away, but it wasn't to get away from her or family, more to help me and DP's career which is v. important to us.

We are doing the civil partnership in mum's town.

TiggerLillies Sat 15-Nov-14 07:42:38

I married my husband recently, our parents told us: You belong to each other now, we're here if you need us but your primary concerns are each other.
So yes I think she is being a bit unreasonable but as you would like a closer relationship, you can explain 'mum, you know how independent I am so when I make a decision without you, I'm not trying to reject you - it's just how I do things. However why don't we meet for coffee and we can chat about what's going on in our lives, it would be great to spend time together'?
She just needs to realise that you still have a relationship even if it doesn't look exactly as she would like it.

hesterton Sat 15-Nov-14 07:46:16

Tell her she did such a good job of bringing you up to be strong and independent, she only has herself to blame. Say with a smile and a hug and do exactly what you want regarding your civil service.

BlueGreenHazelGreen Sat 15-Nov-14 08:01:00

I'm very close to my Mum and see her every day.

She has never been involved in making the big decisions in my life, nor would she expect to be. I've told her about a number of them eg 'we're going to put the house on the market and look for somewhere bigger' but the only response I would expect from her are enthusiastic and positive ones. She's fully aware that any decisions are down to my DH and me.

Looking back a number of my biggest life decisions/changes she has only been told after they are 'fait accompli'.

My sister, who lives far away from us, is exactly the same. She's also very close to Mum.

I do think that your Mum sounds upset though and perhaps a bit disconnected from your life. I'd personally arrange to go and see her very soon or have her come to visit so you can chat this through.

It sounds like you have both maybe let the relationship drift a little. However fixing that has nothing to do with running all your plans by her. You are an adult not a child, your relationship needs to be on an adult basis.

Ps make sure she hears about the civil partnership before everyone else. arrange to go shopping with her for a nice dress.

angelohsodelight Sat 15-Nov-14 08:04:42

Don't start changing now, as if you have kids it will be worse. Tell her about the wedding soon, as that's a bit off, but never let her dictate your choices. My mum expects me to tell her everything as she told her mum everything. But it won't happen and every now and again I get grief but I'm not going to start calling with a minute by minute run down of my day.

Damnautocorrect Sat 15-Nov-14 08:04:44

I've had the same conversation with my mum, it wouldn't occur to me to 'discuss' a decision with her, I decide what I'm doing then say I'm doing x y and z. She finds this difficult, my sister (who she's always been closer to) discusses her decisions with her.
It's just differences that's all, but my mum too takes it as a slight against her.

TestingTestingWonTooFree Sat 15-Nov-14 08:09:36

I am very close to my mum. I tell her lots and ask advice on issues where I'm undecided and think she could contribute. I don't expect her to be involved in making my decisions.

I think the civil partnership is an opportunity to give her a little of what she wants. Consult her on things that don't matter. If you can find a role for her, do so.

d0ttyne11 Sat 15-Nov-14 08:09:51

I thought her email was odd. I am similar age to you and there are parallels in relationship with my mum (in that I left for uni when 17 and since then have been v v independent and lived at least 200 away miles from parents for work)
If I got that email from my mum I'd wonder where's this come from (!?)
I know my mum likes to organise and being in control is v important to her. She hates surprises of any sort. When I got engaged and planned the wedding close to where she lives, I was quite careful in deciding what I'd appreciate her help and full involvement on (dress, flowers) and had to put my foot firmly down re other things (serving everyone a hot meal) so worth considering before you share your lovely news in the most appropriate way for you and your partner. Don't let this overshadow such a special time.

In short, I also think tiggerlillies advice is wise. Hope it goes well. Xxx

TestingTestingWonTooFree Sat 15-Nov-14 08:11:13

I think if the decisions are all made, her being first to know might make a difference. Unless she's a nightmare, I'd tell her your plans and some of the reasoning. Find a way of elevating her above an ordinary guest.

MimiSunshine Sat 15-Nov-14 08:16:58

I had a similar issue with my parents (mostly mum), I moved away for uni and never went back. However when I then decided to move (further) away all the issues came up about me not including them in the decisions, turns out they meant "ask what they think I should do".
The problem is, if you ask but have already made up your mind then what if they're suggestion is the opposite?

I think they struggled with the realisation I had actually grown up and needn't need their permission to do something and that I was going to make decisions I was happy with that maybe they wouldn't choose.

I find it best to sometimes tell them that I'm thinking of doing / buying / going to X. If they then suggest Y I'll say I'll consider it. Sometimes Y is a better choice but mostly I stick with X as I've already made up my mind.

Goldmandra Sat 15-Nov-14 08:18:28

Does she want you to hear her ideas or does she want you to do what she says? I wouldn't discuss plans like this with my DM in a "What do you think?" Way because she would then be very cross if we didn't do what she thought. It is far easier to tell her what we are doing once it's all arranged so she can't expect us to change things.

At 34 it is perfectly appropriate that you make big decisions in cooperation with your DP and then let her know. It isn't reasonable for her to participate in them unless they have a significant effect on her.

I would apologise that she feels so left out, perhaps find a way to talk a little more about everyday things and leave it at that.

CPtart Sat 15-Nov-14 08:19:40

I'd also be wary of changing the way you do things too much. Why should you consult her about your life choices like she's some sort of oracle, they're your decisions to make not hers. Why does she need to have a say in your lives? Do you have a say in hers? I never understand this over involvement tbh. Does she have any hobbies or friends? What will she expect of you and your DS as GC come along and as she gets older,and more frail? That would be my worry. What will her demands and expectations be then?
Nothing wrong however with just spending quality time together.

cheesecakemom Sat 15-Nov-14 08:21:08

It really depends what your relationship is like. If your mom is a difficult person then it's hardly worth pretending you want advice from a person like that.

Would it be worth responding to her ... Nicely and tell her how you feel. Tell her she's not being excluded but since you left home quite young you have always been Independent and never asked anyone for advice etc. Its not meant to offend, it's just who you are.

I get what others are saying, personally I see no point in why you should have to pretend to need her advice if you don't.

Balaboosta Sat 15-Nov-14 08:23:15

She's just being a mum. You sound very competent and in control of everything. Give her a huge hug and make an effort to "warm things up" a bit. Show her a little of your vulnerability. I wouldn't do what she asks exactly but just show her a bit more warmth and closeness. Can you take her out for a special day or something like that?

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