"my other daughters"(95 Posts)
Name changed as oddly specific. For a while now, maybe the last year or two, my mother has been referring to 2 other women as "my other daughter" when speaking about them to a 3rd person (both in front of me and not). One is a former pupil of hers who lived with the family for a short while and who she has remained friends with. This woman is older than me, early 40s and my mother has seen her once or twice in the last 15 years, the last being about 4 years ago. The other is a woman who she rented a room to for a couple of years when I was a child, she would have been in her late teens at the time. This woman visits every couple of years and they speak on the phone every couple of weeks. Not sure how old she is but I'd say maybe 40ish now.
I am 30 and an only child. I find this deeply hurtful. I don't dislike either of the women she refers to as her other daughters but am not especially close to them either. AIBU?
Could they actually be her daughters but she had to give them away (due to the era it was)?
Have you asked her about it?
Wouldn't bother me, but if it's only just started it does seem a bit odd.
I'd laugh if that suggestion wasn't so ridiculous.
By which I mean the idea they might be her actual daughters 😂
I haven't raised it with her because she will probably not take any notice. Just wanted to know if I am justified in being a bit upset.
I think so. My mum took in one of my brothers friends. She is like his mum. Doesnt bother me that she classes him as a son.
Also my stepmil is like my mum. She treats me as a daughter. I knew her before I met dp. Her daughter is my best friend. I knew them both a couple of years before I even met dp. Non of her biological or step kids mind.
My aunt does this, she calls a guy who rented a room her son and a woman who rented her daughter. She has six biological children anyway so I find it weird. She doesnt even see them often. My cousins refer to the guy as their brother but not the woman as sister. It's strange. Can you not bring it up with your mum and tell her you find it hurtful?
It is a bit strange but clearly your mum feels a strong connection with these two women. I don’t think it diminishes the relationship she has with you. She isn’t prioritising them over you is she? Couldn’t you see it in a positive way? That your mum has two friends she has lovely relationships with?
I have been a terrible disappointment to my parents and my mother prefers her neighbour's children and grandchildren. Could it be something like that?
@Scarsthelot that seems a bit different though, from putting someone up for a couple of weeks and/or renting them a room?
I think you’re being over sensitive. I have an ex colleague I refer to as my second mum and she refers to me as her second daughter, she’s close to her daughter as I’m close to her mum. She behaved like a mother figure to me at a difficult time and I’ve loved and respected her since. It could be similar with these two girls. As long as you’re close to her I don’t think you have any reason to be jealous, their places are different to yours.
Yes of course it’s hurtful. And clotheared. Does it make it any better to think of your mother as tactless and somewhat self involved rather than as someone who doesn’t value you as her only daughter and a truly precious thing in her life ?
I think your question reflects on your relationship with you mum. You feel you’re not getting enough from her. If you were, you would know that the one thing there’s no finite amount of in the world, is love. Sorry to sound corny, but there it is.
I think this is related to your being an only child.
Of course you're upset. It is weird at best, and hurtful at worst.
I’d start referring to an older colleague or neighbour as your other mother and see how she likes that. I imagine it wouldn’t go down well.
I was going to say it’s not weird, since my mother in law used to call me the daughter she never had. But we were very close, I spent lots of time with her and provided a lot of care when she was terminally ill. She was very special to me as a person, not just as my husband’s mother. These people don’t sound close at all so yes, it is weird. It makes ‘daughter’ seem less special if she can use that to describe a person with whom she only has a superficial relationship. I would find it really hurtful if my mother did that.
Sorry I'm crap at copy pasting so won't tag but Everybody I don't resent her relationship with them at all, I am glad they have stayed close enough. Chocolate we are not close except geographically. 7salmon absolutely it is to do with our relationship. I don't think it's to do with being an only child particularly, unless you mean I am used to having all her affection and am now jealous? I'm not jealous of their relationship at all, I would have loved to have a sibling and I often refer to one of them as my foster sister even though she wasn't living with us long. I think it's weird because my mum didn't even know them until they were late teens, and they don't have that family-type relationship (they haven't stayed in the area, etc). user it is hurtful because they have grown up, moved away and lived their own lives without staying in the family orbit enough to be referred to like that, I guess? So when she refers to them like that it implies that I am no closer than they are.
Thanks for your points of view, I really appreciate it. I wasn't going to raise it with her anyway unless there was an overwhelming consensus that I was not being unreasonable, and it seems fairly even.
It's weird and I understand why you'd be hurt. She doesn't really even know them.
If you are close enough to feel that one of them is your ‘foster sister’ it seems odd you can’t see why your mum might also feel that familial close relationship. I also don’t think that moving away from the ‘family orbit’ makes one any less family; some of my siblings have stayed in my home town but I have moved hundreds of miles away from my parents and I guess am ‘living my own life,’ should I be worth less than my siblings still living near to my parents in terms of location?
Being close isn’t about location or even about how often you speak but rather about how deep those connections go, how you feel in their company, the conversations you can have and emotions/ thoughts/ worries you can share with them. One person could live next door to a family member they see daily but be less ‘close’ to them than a relative in Australia who they only speak to twice a year.
I think you need to take it less personally that your Mum regards these other women closely and, if it bothers you, work on trying to strengthen your own relationship with her rather than trying to judge theirs.
could they actually be her daughters?
Only on Mumsnet.
Why are you allowed to call one of them sister but you don’t want your mum to call her daughter.
I have a mum, she has three sons including me, she also had a grandson in my son. We don’t share DNA, it doesn’t stop us being a family. We don’t get to see each other as much as we would like, but we both love each other, we’re very close and talk at least once a week. You don’t need to be physically close to someone to have a close relationship.
@MyNewBearTotoro I referred to her in that way when explaining something that happened in my childhood, I don't actually think of her as a sister although I like her very much. You are absolutely right of course in what you say about distance being no barrier to emotional closeness. I just don't think they have that type of relationship, I would describe it as a close friendship. Or maybe I'm just jealous after all and need to get over myself. For context I live 5 miles down the road and she hasn't visited me since I moved here 6 years ago. When she rings me, she says "Well?" instead of hello. I don't think she likes me at all.
I don't want to be a drip feeder so don't want to go into more detail on this thread, but this has made me think about things quite deeply and I think I will make a post about the whole situation on another board - relationships maybe?
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