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to not want to have more or less the same phone conversation for up to an hour every week with my Mum?

(211 Posts)
bibbitybobbityyhat Sun 08-Jan-17 13:35:09

I can do it once a fortnight, but not every week!

I pick the phone up when she rings because she's very old and lives alone. But lately she has taken to phoning more often "for a chat". She did it today and said "have you got a minute for a quick chat about dd's birthday?" so, although I was right in the middle of something, I said ok, thought she wanted to maybe check on what present I'd bought for dd on her behalf (which we'd had a fairly long conversation about last Sunday). But then it just morphs into yet another conversation about how dreary January is, how her various friends and neighbours and their ailments are etc. Although I'd say to her dh was at work all weekend and therefore I had lots to do at home, she just can't keep it down to a quick 10 or 15 minutes sad.

So I had to say "look Mum, I've got to go" and now I feel bad! But is it bad? I spoke to her briefly on the 31st (she said she'd been trying to get hold of me but hadn't left a message on the answerphone) for an hour on the 1st and will speak to her again when she rings to speak to dd on her birthday this week.

I find it irritating!!

SnatchedPencil Sun 08-Jan-17 13:40:10

Try to think of material that you will be able to use in advance. She sounds lonely and wants to talk to you. She uses the same topics repeatedly because neither of you has anything to say, so try to think of things that you will be able to say, before the call.

It's not unreasonable to ask her to call you back at a different time, just make time for her later in the day and speak to her then.

MarsBarsAreShrinking Sun 08-Jan-17 13:40:32

Aww, sorry but I think YABU. You said yourself she is "very old and lives alone"... sad

I don't think once a week is excessive at all to be honest, for a phone call. I speak to my mum most days (and she still has my dad for company) and am happy to as, well... without stating the obvious... she won't be around for ever.

ThomasRichard Sun 08-Jan-17 13:42:46

How about scheduling a weekly call with her at a time when you know you'll be able to have an hour free? Does she have email access? Could you email her a line or two every other day so that she's pre-prepped with interesting subjects to talk about during the call?

BertrandRussell Sun 08-Jan-17 13:43:22

You can not want to.

But, unless there is more history here, you would be an utter arsehole not to.

NavyandWhite Sun 08-Jan-17 13:44:59

I get you. But like you say she's old and lives alone. We will all be like this I expect one day.

BIgBagofJelly Sun 08-Jan-17 13:45:51

I echo ThomasRichard that you should schedule a call at a convenient time for you. If you field the call at a time when you're under less time pressure you might feel less impatient. I do feel like one or two phone calls a week isn't too much to ask for your mother who sounds lonely. Now that she's old and frail I think you should view the call as a small act of kindness on your part - it might be boring but I don't think it's too much to ask!

kilmuir Sun 08-Jan-17 13:47:51

You should feel bad.

Birdsgottafly Sun 08-Jan-17 13:48:00

What happened that you don't give a shit about her wellbeing?

Go on to the Age Concern website, the focus is on loneliness and isolation.

Nerris Sun 08-Jan-17 13:48:16

Could you put her on speaker (on your mobile) and then still potter with stacking the dishwasher, collecting emails, sorting through the post etc.
It can be frustrating being on the phone for a long time when you have stuff to do, but maybe you phoning her twice a week and cutting the conversation to 15 minutes might be easier to manage for you and will make your mum feel she's had much more contact if she's lonely.

Bejazzled Sun 08-Jan-17 13:48:34

She sounds lonely and wanting to be involved with your life.

I felt the same as you about my mum - until she died. Now I really miss those phone calls 🙁

Catiemack Sun 08-Jan-17 13:48:43

What kind of nasty individual begrudges their elderly, probably lonely, mother an hour of their time?

It's irritating? So fucking what?

gamerchick Sun 08-Jan-17 13:48:47

I understand that its irritating but really you need to suck it up. Do you ever ring her for a chat? It sounds as if she would never get to speak to you if she didn't ring.

mummymeister Sun 08-Jan-17 13:50:40

keep a pad handy by the phone and right down a couple of interesting things that happen in the family each week. also use it for noting down any info she gives you. then when you do speak to each other you have something there to hand to talk about and its two way because you have remembered what she said to you last.

Seriously though once a week isn't much to ask really is it. if you have older kids away at uni/working wouldn't you expect to hear from them once a week.

gamerchick Sun 08-Jan-17 13:50:47

How about you ring her on your mobile and carry on with tasks while you chat?

mummymeister Sun 08-Jan-17 13:51:23

write not right doh!

DailyFail1 Sun 08-Jan-17 13:51:43

Yabu. She sounds lonely. Mum will often call me every night sometimes for a 'quick chat' when she's feeling down (she feels worse at night) and I encourage it. She's not going to be around forever.

derxa Sun 08-Jan-17 13:52:15

I get you bibbity. I had the same with my dad. You're not horrible. She is lonely and frail and the phone calls bring all that back to you. I know that you care for your mum and will do the best for her.

Lilaclily Sun 08-Jan-17 13:52:47

I play tetris on iPad while talking to my dad grin

twilightcafe Sun 08-Jan-17 13:53:15

YABU. You probably bore her too.

alltouchedout Sun 08-Jan-17 13:55:17

If I go more than a day without speaking to my mum she starts contacting other people to express her alarm that she "can't get hold of alltouchedout at all!" I find it works best if I phone her- usually on my way to work so I have to end the call when.I get there, or at the weekends I'll do it twenty minutes before Strictly of The Archers starts as then she will want to end the call to watch/ listen to those.
It's a bit of an annoyance at times but in the grand scheme of things it's not a huge deal. It's a few hours a week and far less emotionally draining than trying to avoid such regular contact would be.

NavyandWhite Sun 08-Jan-17 13:55:38

I doubt that twil. The mum has a lot of time in her hands by the sound of it. People in this situation can become very needy and a bit self absorbed - meaning that they forget how busy others actually are.

Cherrysoup Sun 08-Jan-17 13:56:22

Her sphere of interest is narrow, neighbours, doctor's appointments, ailments, same as my mil, who is lonely and talks about the same thing every time, but you know what, we ruddy well phone or she'd go days with no-one to talk to. You sound incredibly intolerant. How often do you see her?

JunosRevenge Sun 08-Jan-17 13:57:03

She's very old, she lives alone, and you begrudge spending one hour a week on the phone to your DM?

YABVVVVU

Your poor DM.

statetrooperstacey Sun 08-Jan-17 13:57:16

I speak to my daughter and mum most days, just a checking in type thing, Quick catch up. You are being churlish. You last spoke to her in the 1st? That is quite a long time for an elderly lonely person I think. Could you call her every other day for 10 mins or so, she would probably love that and it would pre-empt the marathon long inconvenient calls. Put her on speaker phone when the kids are in the bath?

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