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to expect my mother to respond to my attempt to mend our relationship?

(9 Posts)
ilovecake Wed 23-Jul-08 22:20:45

Try to keep this short. Me and my mum have not had a great relationship - been on here before about it. However I grown really fed up of her fobbing me off and paying no interest in me or my kids. She only lives 30 minutes away and she last visited us in November last year - since then met at a Boxing Day family do, and two kids parties but she paid no significant attention to me or the kids. All my attempts to arrange visits are cancelled by her for varied reasons - unwell, tired, working, busy, splitting up with boyfriend, car broken down. I then find out that she has gone to visit my sisters instead or gone out drinking with friends for the evening - making a miraculous recovery. I am just so fed up with it and so after the last cancellation about 10 weeks ago i said i was fed up of being messed around. She responded two weeks later with a letter which went on about how terrible her life has been and that she has felt unable to maintain relationships with the family - some of which is accurate but dramatised for her purposes. But she never went on to say how she might address this issue in the future but simply said she was very much in love with her partner and hoped in time i would understand and share in this. - Which has nothing to do with our relationship - she is just so selfish. She turned up to DS's party with a crappy present much smaller than his cousin's present given 2 months before and neglected to acknowledge my birthday for the first time. So I left it for a bit to see if she might make contact as she didn't i decided to write my feelings in a letter (for the first time) and send 4 weeks ago. I left things open but asked her to let me know what she thought she could offer / if nothing then to say so. I have still heard nothing except from my dad (they are seperated) that she has said she has lost another daughter (she is currently not speaking to 2 of my sisters) so it seems she is not going to do anything. I am fed up of playing the game i have all my life if treading on eggshells and always having to hide my feelings for fear of upsetting mum. I don't want to back down without her acknowledgeing my feelings and needs! Sorry so long - I am sure am not alone. How do you cope with this? I feel so torn between accepting the relationship as it is and allowing mum to behave as she likes or accepting that if she is not prepared to change I am better off without?

MsHighwater Wed 23-Jul-08 22:32:55

I suppose you have to try, as objectively as you can, to work out whether what you would gain by giving up the attempt to maintain the relationship would outweight what you would lose. I would suggest that you avoid seeming to close the door completely - just leave it open for her to contact you again but be prepared to lay down some groundrules.

I'm sorry that you have such a difficult relationship with your mum.

Ally90 Thu 24-Jul-08 14:56:30

Stately Homes thread for mother/father/sibling problems


And the fact she is not speaking to two of your siblings speaks volumes too. You have made an effort...then she says (after not making an effort to see you or gc or answering your letter) that she has lost a dd?!?!

On the above thread our mothers are like this or smothering (I'm 'lucky' enough to have a smothering mother) or just plain abusive. I suspect your mother is also borderline...there is a book about Borderline Personality disorder called 'walking on eggshells', this website has a good message forum and explainations. She could also be revolves round her? Her behaviour is not your fault.

ilovecake Thu 24-Jul-08 15:09:58

Thanks Ally will visit that website - funnily enough someone else said to me just this week that perhaps she has a personality disorder. Did read some of that thread last night and realised am not alone and in fact some are putting up with far worse. Cheers for support.

sarah293 Thu 24-Jul-08 15:11:19

Message withdrawn

MeMySonAndI Thu 24-Jul-08 15:21:10

Ilovecake... somebody is going to come and shot me for saying this but... I think the damage we get is caused by our expectations of what a mother/daughter should be, rather than from their actions themselves.

I had a very difficult time with my mother, I couldn't understand why she acted like that towards me, but since I accepted that's the way she is, and nothing I do is going to change that, my life is much easier. I don't expect anything so I don't get disapointed.

...Besides, she also had a crappy mother so accepting where she comes from has helped me to accept an understand that she is, ultimately, just another human being, with certain personality traits that make us incompatible.

Ally90 Thu 24-Jul-08 15:24:21

If you think others are putting up with far worse you should be on the thread We all think others have it worse.

Riven, I'm sorry about your dd, but ilovecake has made an effort with her mother, and her mother is not responding at all. Things like this do not blow up out of the blue, its a lifetime of problems. What happened with your dd? Being on the other side of the fence so to speak I may be able to offer some help?

HonoriaGlossop Thu 24-Jul-08 16:23:32

I agree with MeMySonAndI that the conflict between what we want someone to be and what they ARE can cause alot of anguish

so basically I think that if you can't accept your mum how she IS, then perhaps you are better off without. She certainly sounds as if she almost can't be 'bothered' to mend any fences, telling people she has lost you already....for whatever reason, she is crap at sustaining normal relationships....

so if you can put up with her seeing you when she wants and on her own terms and not providing you and your kids with good levels of attention etc, and accept that is who she is, maybe you can have a relationship with her. But I'm not saying you SHOULD do that; I don't think many people could accept that from their mums...from what she said in her letter it sounds as if she has basically given herself permission, and forgiven herself, for treating you so badly

sad I'm sorry, it must be horrible. But good on you and all credit to you for trying with her

ilovecake Fri 25-Jul-08 16:47:08

I am so sorry Riven that you are experiencing the pain of your DD having run away. I hope that you will be able be in contact soon.
I do wrangle with the idea of accepting my mum for who she is MeMyson i know that i cannot change her and expect her to be the mother / grandmother from the movies. But knowing this and living with it are very different. I don't feel able to move into that stage yet and feel very conflicted. I feel fine until i speak to one of my sisters who does see my mum or anniversarys /birthdays come up and then i get upset. I have kept quiet all my life and always smiled and absorbed all the crap my mum has thrown at me but i feel i have to stand up for myself and the kids. I don't know where to go from here and there is no ultimate answer! Thanks for listening and support.

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