To be a bit upset with what my mum left me or and over reacting?(38 Posts)
I have a very difficult relationship with my mum for various reasons I won't bore you with, but have posted plenty before about it. Trying to take baby steps to get through and forge a relationship of sorts!
Anyway until yesterday she lived near me for around 2 months after living abroad for a decade and has now decided to go back abroad very suddenly. She managed to clear the flat out that she was living in, but asked if I could dispose of some of the bulkier items once she'd gone, which I agreed to. She told me that she left a few bits for me in a folder on the kitchen worktop, mainly recipes she found as I enjoy cooking and some books.
Went round today to sort furniture, and picked up the folder on my way out. Just taken a look in it. Some recipes as promised, a couple of novels...and two books about the Dukan Diet and the Atkins Diet
I'm not overweight. I'm 5'7" and usually weigh about 9.5stone, around a size 10. In heavier at the moment because I'm six months pregnant. I have changed shape, I'm bigger than my last pregnancy and I have noticed. I've probably put about a stone or a stone and a half on, I haven't weighed myself so it's just a guess looking at myself, but I do feel self conscious
because I look like an egg with legs
AIBU to be upset at this hint? And it will be a hint, my mum doesn't do these things by accident. One reason our relationship is difficult is her put downs, particularly about my appearance. On my wedding day she told me she didn't like my hair, I looked like I was going to work apparently. If she ever buys me clothes she'll buy me a size 14, despite knowing I'm a 10 (before I get flamed size 14 is not big in the least but it's not my size, she's making a point that she thinks my clothes are too tight when they're not). She's never likes my hair, it's very long and blonde and I always look like a "council house slapper" when my roots come through apparently,why can't I have a nice dark bob?
She never asks about my pregnancy, or how my scans have gone (despite being high risk and a few concerns with the baby which has resulted in extra scans), when I said to her a few weeks ago "I had a scan on Monday" she said "really what for?" she forgot I was pregnant. Yet before she left her flat I was round helping her sort stuff and she said to my 3yo DD "do you know why your mummy is fat at the moment?" i did bollock her for the one, not because of me but because I don't want 'fat' spoken about in that manner in front of my DD.
Anyway I chucked the books in the wheelie bins outside because even if I did want to Diet (and I don't especially when pregnant) I wouldn't do fad ones, but more because I feel it was a huge dig. But maybe I'm so used to put downs in taking it the wrong way completely and there may just have been nice recipes in there?
I love reading books about food, including diet books. Perhaps she did too?
Anyway, it really is not worth tieing yourself up in knots about. As she has gone now.
Even if it was a dig - which sounds very possible.
(sorry for slow thought process)
Gone now? She didn't leave these books in her will
OP your mother sounds like a nasty spiteful person. I can imagine how hurt you must have felt having to listen to regular put downs. Make no mistake she did this to make you feel bad.
Just be very glad that she has left the country again and focus on your own lovely family and start to look forward to the birth of your new baby.
If you are struggling with the way she treats you I recommend that you see a counsellor if for no other reason than to tell someone who will listen to get it off your chest.
You were dead right to chuck out the books. The might have had some nice recipes but you don't want the memories of her nastiness cluttering up your home.
You actually sound like a lovely person and a wonderful mother.
This is the kind of thing my mother used to do too. It's horrible and hurtful but she thought she was doing the right thing as a mother to tell me if I was getting "a bit chubby". FWIW I've never been bigger than a size 10.
It only stopped when I suddenly lost it and yelled all manner of hell and fury at her, all the years of pent up anger came raging through and I told her that if she ever spoke about my weight again I would have no hesitation in cutting her out of my life. She was absolutely stunned and went home in a huff. We've never spoken about it since but the message must have got through because she's actually never mentioned my weight again. I can see her itching to at times, I recognise the pursing of lips if I'm at the higher end of my weight...but, I immediately shoot her a look and she gets the message.
Sorry for the rant OP and I'm not saying you should do what i did!
But I think you need to draw a firm boundary here and let your mother know that there are consequences if she ignores them.
An awful lot of people diet after they've had a baby and she might well have thought they would be handy if you were thinking of losing weight after birth.
She doesn't sound very nice but I think on this occasion you are being a bit over sensitive.
At first I thought she just had them and left them for you - no big deal. However reading what you wrote afterwards it does sound like it may have been a dig. However there's no use in getting yourself in knots over it. People only get to us if we let them. I'm usually a size 12 but very conscious of my weight. A few years back I was in early pregnancy and it was really hot and I wore a sleeveless dress. My mum made some comment about my arms looking fat. I got really upset but I was only upset because it's a very sensitive topic for me. If she'd have said she didn't like my hair style or something I wouldn't have cared. Anyway as pps have said just try and forget about and concentrate on your own lovely family
It only stopped when I suddenly lost it and yelled all manner of hell and fury at her, all the years of pent up anger came raging through and I told her that if she ever spoke about my weight again I would have no hesitation in cutting her out of my life.
This is what I would do. If you don't call her up on it, it will get worse.
Be glad she's gone so her opportunities to dig at you are over. I'd tell her I binned the lot.
You ask us if you're unreasonable to be upset. You don't need our permission to be hurt by or angry with your nightmare of a mother.
At first I wondered if the books were the new or were they her used books? I hate throwing books awa öy and will always try to pass them on. And maybe she left 'food related' items all together ie recipes and diet books. I am not making excuses but maybe there is less intention than you imagine, then I read the rest of your post.
You go to describe quite an unpleasant person who is disengaged and self obsessed. I think you have to accept she is the way she is and you must stop running around after her and trying to please her. Especially when her only goal is to please herself. Fancy forgetting you are pregnant.
Rest assured that you will not repeat this behaviour with your children and they will not have to witness their grandmothers coldness and disinterest on a regular basis.
Good luck with your pregnancy OP
Thanks all. Looking back I wish I'd mailed them back to her or taken them to a charity shop I feel bad for wasting them (I'm a waste pedant and NEVER chuck books out but it was an "in the moment" decision ). I'm not gonna let this one slide I'm gonna ask her why she left them and put her straight of she says anything about weight.
KC225 I strongly suspect she didn't actually forget I was pregnant. I made the colossal mistake of telling her about 3 months before I fell pregnant that DH and I had a big fall out about something or other (which we made up quickly for), and I should have known better because after that she would ask when she rang about our "marital problems". So when I told her I am pregnant she said "oh. Are you happy about this?" when I said I am why wouldn't I be she said "well because of the problems in your marriage". FFS it was one argument! she basically doesn't approve of my pregnancy, and the "oh I forgot you were pregnant" was a massive PA dig to say "I don't think you should be pregnant"
I don't think you are being over sensitive, yes this one thing is a small thing but if it is the latest small thing in a whole host of small things it can drive you demented.
My mum is awesome and would never act like that, my Nan on the other hand is a master at it. Mostly towards my mum but as I've become an adult her attitude to me is changing as well it hurts and it has really hurt my mum and pretty much destroyed their relationship. It's hard to be comfortable with someone when you are always on edge waiting for the next petty dig.
I think that I would be more irritated than upset. I am a similar height and weight to you and I remember my mother buying me size 14 clothes for my birthday a couple of weeks after giving birth. I was quite irritated at the assumption that I had gone up two sizes (I hadn't at all and was still a size 10) and would be staying at that weight for long enough to get any use out of the clothes. I decided that it was more of a reflection of her weight struggles than anything else though.
I dont think people get why you are upset but i do.My mam was the same,its jealousy pure and simple.
My mam was mad jealous of my life,always trying to put me down.I remember i had my ds and he was a few weeks old.Met my mam to go shopping and tried a dress on.The guise is i*m being helpful* anyway i come out wearing the dress.Straight in wiht you have a belly,you have put on weight.
Well the saleswoman was there and she just tore in to my mam.How dare you talk to your daughter like that,she only had a baby.Well she didnt know where too look.I was glad somebody stood up for me,when i was unable.
Its awful when your own mother has to get the last word,be glad she is gone and enjoy your pregnancy.
I hope you are well. Thank you for leaving the folder of recipes for me. The diet books didn't interest me, so I've found a more appropriate home for them.
Rescue them from the bin, post them to her with a note saying you feel sure she intended to pack them as obviously she needs them and you don't.
You know you don't have to lose weight so try not to let it bother you.
Your mother's actions are about HER not you.
Why are you giving her the power to upset you? Either tell her you didn't want the books and you threw them out, or just don't mention them. Personally I wouldn't mention the books. Why let her know that you thought anything at all about them?
My Mum would like me to weigh less. She thinks I would look better and be healthier.
Not that it is central to the point I am making but my BMI is about 22 and I eat fairly healthily.
Objectively she might be right! However I ignore hints and change subject if brought up.
I have become less sensitive about this as years go and and if it bothers me I just think again that her only motivation to mention it must be that she really thinks I would be better off a bit lighter and this probably reflects on her opinion of herself, she keeps a lower BMI than me.
It's working out why she does it which is the key to you feeling less hurt. I think it's worth investigating some self help books to begin with that talk about mothers with narcissitic tendencies. Have a look here www.psychologytoday.com/blog/tech-support/201304/daughters-unloving-mothers-7-common-wounds to begin with.
The bit you said about there being a hidden message rang bells with me. It's a common experience of people with mothers who find it hard to love their children unconditionally. It might help to know that it runs through the generations and actually your mother would have had something happen that caused her to be this way and is really not able to control herself (but if you set boundaries she'll just think things rather than say/do them - she'll learn to bite her tongue).
This is a good book www.jasmincori.com/books/the-emotionally-absent-mother/author-interview/
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.