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AIBU to not apologise?

(35 Posts)
Yoshimihere Mon 06-Mar-17 13:04:00

I think a brief summary of my relationship with my mother would be that we don't have a great history, unless I'm toeing the line. It has been very unpleasant at times.

We disagreed about something in a phonecall a couple of weeks ago. I kept trying to change the topic, agree to disagree etc but she was insistent and wouldn't. The phonecall was followed by a few texts about how rude I am. I try to avoid difficult conversations by text but I couldn't face calling her as I felt it would be a row so I have basically ignored the messages.

I've tried texting some unrelated pleasant things but she's not having it.

So what would others do? Do you just apologise because it's your mother?

Normally I would say whatever to please her but I've been really hurt by things she has said in the last year. I don't feel like keeping up the apologising/grovelling. But I wonder if I am going too far the other way now.

What is the adult mature reasonable approach in this standoff?

LostSight Mon 06-Mar-17 13:11:55

If you are happy that you behaved in a reasonable fashion (you don't have to agree on everything) then you should not apologise. Listen to your conscience and don't give in to the temptation to apologise when you have done nothing wrong, just to placate her, when it is her that is being unreasonable.

Be the person you want to be. It is difficult, if you are used to being pushed around, but in the longer term, it feels so much better.

Good luck.

LostSight Mon 06-Mar-17 13:17:10

Also, as to what would I do. Can you explain a bit more about what you mean when you say 'she's not having it'? Does she ignore your messages, or re-state her accusation that you are rude? How I responded would depend on what she is actually doing.

FATEdestiny Mon 06-Mar-17 13:18:33

My mum and I have a close relationship, so I'm not sure if my advise will be relevant to your situation.

Mum & I had a stand-off a few years ago, about my brother. Our points of view were opposite, uncompromising and neither of us will apologise for our pov nor agree with the opposing pov.

It took several attempts at talking about the issue until it was fully understood on both sides. It took a letter from me (one side of A4, so not an essay) and a conversation afterwards to reach the stalemate that:

- Yes, she understood my viewpoint and understood my reasons for my stance.
- Yes, I understood her viewpoint and understand her reasons for her stance.
- No, she definately does not agree with me
- No, I definitely do not agree with her
- We both accept the other will not change their stance, now or in the future.

So, in order to move forward, we both acknowledged that we did understand the reason behind the others opinion. Therefore this validated the others opinion, rather than dismissing it. Then we agreed just to not mention it again and move on.

If either of us felt our opinions were being dismissed, that may have made resolving things more difficult. Those who respect each other don't dismiss the others clear upset. That will include you respecting and not dismissing your mum's opinions, even if you disagree with them.

gamerchick Mon 06-Mar-17 13:21:31

I go very low contact until she's over herself. Never apologise even if the flying monkeys come. You don't rely on her for anything do you, nothing to use as a power trip type of thing?

It is hard at first, especially when you're used to appeasing them. Come out of the FOG and it does get easier to deal with albeit never pleasant.

Heathen4Hire Mon 06-Mar-17 13:21:47

My mum never apologises, even when I know she knows she is being difficult. So I offer flowers.

xStefx Mon 06-Mar-17 13:23:19

If you keep apologising to keep the peace then your basically admitting (in her eyes) that your always out of order and leaving yourself open to criticism and blame every time you have an opinion.

Me and my mum are so alike, we disagree often. We don't talk about it , we don't apologise, just act like it never happened when we both calm down. Seems to work ok for us as we both realise by now the way we used to do it "blazing rows" didn't work

puglife15 Mon 06-Mar-17 13:23:52

Normally I would say whatever to please her

Well there's your answer right there. You're not placating her as usual (and why should you?). She's going to be pissed off but let her.

Bexta147 Mon 06-Mar-17 13:26:21

Are you my secret sister?! Sounds exactly like my mam. I have now stopped apologising to her when I know I'm not in the wrong. The final straw for me was when she decided to cause an argument 3 days after my last baby was born because I dared to pull her up on the fact that she was favouriting one of my boys over the other. She stormed out my house and then continued to text me abuse for the next 3 hours about how I'm an awful person and she knows I hate her etc etc. Like your mam she is only happy if I'm toeing the line but I refuse to do it any more.
My dad also thinks I should always apologise just because he does for an easy life. I have realised she has been emotionally abusive for as long as I can remember and I try to keep contact to a minimum. If her and my dad weren't still together I would probably cut her out my life all together.

If your not in the wrong do not apologise.

Yoshimihere Mon 06-Mar-17 13:41:49

She has restated that I'm disrespectful, pointed out I'm not responding to those messages. I guess I don't need to do anything now but we haven't spoken since and so it's still there, unresolved.

Clearly one of us needs to call the other at some point but I can't face the unresolved discussion, I'd be happy to ignore it.

Tbh I have a lot going on just now so I'm not bothered by the lack of contact but i am a little worried that it grows into a bigger thing for her.

Thanks for the comments. FATE I'm going to think about yours because I really do not respect the reasons for her views so I can see the problem in my stance.

Bexta. It sounds like our mums have a lot in common.

LostSight Mon 06-Mar-17 14:21:40

She has restated that I'm disrespectful, pointed out I'm not responding to those messages. I guess I don't need to do anything now but we haven't spoken since and so it's still there, unresolved.

Personally, I would leave it for a while, then try again to make contact. This is actually easier if you have a lot going on. Try not to think about what is going on in her head, that is her problem to resolve. If even then, she continues to raise the issue, I would re-iterate that I was not going to engage in that discussion: that as far as I was concerned, the best course of action was to agree to disagree and that if she was willing to have contact on that basis, that we could start again.

After that, I would wait to see how she responded, and until she responded on those terms, I would not engage again.

However, I am aware, it is much easier to write than to carry out.

I have a long history of being too passive. I have learned to try to listen to my own conscience. I now try only to do things I feel comfortable with and set boundaries and then stick to them. It is very difficult when you start, but does get easier with time. It is especially difficult to change the pattern of a long-term relationship, but it sounds like you have made a start.

flowers

mollymaid16 Mon 06-Mar-17 14:26:33

I think you should always make the point of being the bigger person, if you know you'll talk at some point what's the point in dragging it on just apologise and get over it

BarbarianMum Mon 06-Mar-17 14:26:37

Ignore her for now. No more texts, no more calls, no more contact until she offers an olive branch. Normal relationships contain the space for people to have differences of opinion, unless the difference is so great that no relationship is possible.

BarbarianMum Mon 06-Mar-17 14:27:57

mollymaid there is a difference bw being "the bigger person" and being a doormat. Some people get them confused though.

xStefx Mon 06-Mar-17 14:53:44

agree, big difference between being the bigger person and a doormat molly

Yoshimihere Mon 06-Mar-17 17:29:36

Well she sent a message asking me DCs age (birthdays coming up) so I sent a very friendly one back mistakenly thinking she was trying to move on. More of the miserable stuff back. And a voicemail I haven't listened to.

So I think I will just leave it.

I do see that it's tricky to work out being the bigger person from being a doormat. I do think I have been a doormat. I really think she's behaving u fairly. She's been like this a while and I haven't the will to fix it.

I'm feeling a bit more sure that I'm better without the fuss. Hopefully we can get past it to something superficial at some point.

LostSight Mon 06-Mar-17 17:41:58

Vis-a-vis being the bigger person. I have no problem putting my feelings aside and ignoring or forgiving erratic behaviour from someone I know is generally nice and is perhaps having a bad day.

In addition, whatever the provocation, I would not lower myself to insulting someone or being rude. It only makes me feel worse in the long run.

I might even consider apologising for something that wasn't my fault, if I think the other person has, for some reason, got the wrong end of the stick.

To me, those things might be classified as me being the bigger person.

If someone is trying to push me into doing or saying something that I am not happy with, and especially if this is a behaviour pattern that this person exhibits on a regular basis, then a false apology is merely appeasement and will make me like myself less.

LostSight Mon 06-Mar-17 17:47:54

* if you know you'll talk at some point what's the point in dragging it on just apologise and get over it*

The point, for me, is clear. The relationship as it stands is destructive to Yoshimehere's feelings of self-worth and potentially her mental health. Potentially, making changes to the response might change the pattern for the future to something less destructive.

Sorry, I keep thinking of other things I wanted to say as soon as I have posted.

highinthesky Mon 06-Mar-17 17:50:44

Yes leave her to it and insist that she apologises to you for being unreasonable and sending rude messages before the channels of communication are re-opened.

There is an established cycle here and this is how you break it.

Looneytune253 Mon 06-Mar-17 17:56:47

Maybe try responding to the messages in a clear concise (polite) way. Respond to yhe accusations some thing like: 'mum, i dont think i have been rude at all. I may have a different opinion to you and i have a right to voice that, but that does not make me rude, i will be happy to just agree to disagree as my opinion has not changed'. Make sure you address all the points she has accused you of and try and keep it light and polite.

Looneytune253 Mon 06-Mar-17 17:56:48

Maybe try responding to the messages in a clear concise (polite) way. Respond to yhe accusations some thing like: 'mum, i dont think i have been rude at all. I may have a different opinion to you and i have a right to voice that, but that does not make me rude, i will be happy to just agree to disagree as my opinion has not changed'. Make sure you address all the points she has accused you of and try and keep it light and polite.

mollymaid16 Mon 06-Mar-17 18:04:55

I understand the difference but if It was a friend then yes I'd be childish like yous all state and wait for her to get in touch with me but if it was a parent I say life's to short so why drag the fight on and moan about it to everyone with ear shot for days only to then get back on touch few days or weeks down the line

Gottagetmoving Mon 06-Mar-17 18:05:53

My daughter and I often have big arguments and disagree but then just carry on next day as normal. Neither of us apologises to the other.
We are similar in temperament but we don't insult each other or get personal.
There is only need to apologise if you said something nasty but not for disagreeing!

ChuckDaffodils Mon 06-Mar-17 18:20:18

What sort of disagreement?

If it was 'the Bay City Rollers are really ace' then yes I agree, let her get on with it as you are allowed an opinion.

If it was 'mother, you really smell of mushrooms' then I'd say it was quite rude.

scaryteacher Mon 06-Mar-17 18:29:28

My Mum got really cross with me and this entailed a journey back to the UK, including sharing an hotel room, with her giving me the silent treatment. I just stuck the radio on whilst driving her back, and gave her a damn good ignoring. I dropped her off, stayed the night (with her by now doing minimal conversation), and left promptly the next morning. She didn't talk to me for about three weeks, and I just let her stew. It worked.

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