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Please would like to hear people's opinions on this. Is this normal?(21 Posts)
I'm basically writing because I haven't been able to stop thinking about something my mum said to me.
Little back story... My mum and dad are both very heavy drinkers (they both work so don't drink until the evening) They drink every day and my mum gets through about 10 bottles of wine to herself a week at least.
As I was growing up my father cheated on my mum multiple times and also beat the crap out of her regularly, even when she was pregnant with me (my sister who is 10 years older than me confirmed this) Me and my mum had to stay in hotels over night sometimes because my father would beat her up and then refuse to leave.
They have always seen my sister as a lovely person, but don't ever think I am even though I do everything in my power to please them (for some twisted reason)
Anyway last night me and my partner had a falling out which was entirely his fault, he went to his mums where he was welcomed with comfort and reassurance, even though he was to blame. I then went their to resolve the issue as we have a newborn baby, when I let my mum know that it was sorted and my partner had apologised my mother replied to me 'Oh he has no need to say sorry, maybe you needed that scare so that you can learn not to push him so far next time. You must take after me, I tested your fathers patients a lot over the years'
Now is it me or is this ridiculous and sounds somewhat brainwashed? How the hell can she think she tested my father? He was the one who cheated over and over again, beat the shit out of her, made her and her children leave when they argued... I'm just so angry that she dare think I need to learn a lesson - Why do they think I am so lucky to have my partner, yet he isn't lucky to have me? I am so angry about it.
What do you think?
I think your mum has a very damaged opinion. I'd take it with a pinch of salt if you can.
I think your family is very dysfunctional. Your mum has chosen to believe that she is at fault for your father's behaviour. Your sister is the golden child who can do no wrong while you are the scapegoat. When you were growing up were your problems focussed on to take the focus away from more serious problems within the family?
I think you need to accept that you can't change your family and distance yourself so they can't damage you further.
Yeah, my counsellor who I no longer see said that she sounds quite damaged... but it's so hard to take my mums advice as anything but gospel for some reason. I've spent so much of my life trying to impress my parents so that they thought I was anywhere near as 'perfect' as my sister (btw I hold no resentment to my sister I love her lots) that it feels embedded in my brain to try to impress. I am just so different from all of my family.
You know you are right and she is wrong. But that's not easy to handle when it's your parents, I know. The thing is, you may never get her to see your point of view. So put your energy into yourself, and your own well being, and your relationship with your partner, not in trying to convince her.
Incidentally, you don't say what your partner did, or how he treats you, now. I don't want to make assumptions about him, but make sure you are not putting up with bad behaviour from him, because you are accustomed to seeing yourself as second best from your family situation.
When my parents weren't arguing they would focus on what a 'bitch' I was and how 'selfish' I was for wanting them to not drink... The reason I didnt want them to drink is because there were always 2 outcomes, they would have a massive arguement and I would have to then look after my mum and be a sympathic ear whilst she told me they were going to divorce... Or they would gang up on me and just act like nasty teenagers taking the piss.
I stopped talking to my dad for a long time whilst living in the same house and instead of them realising why that may be, I was called a selfish bitch and kicked out.
I so want to accept that I can't change them, but they are lovely when they are sober. Although I still think they have those twisted views, they just don't voice them when they haven't had a drink.
Whenever my sister argues with a partner or says anything about her partners my parents act as though her boyfriend is lucky to be anywhere near her.
Every boyfriend I've ever had has never been the lucky one apparently, seems like my mum thinks I should just be grateful I can even get someone to be with me :/
My partner is generally a good man, when we first were going out he told a lot of lies and has made big changes in himself which I have noticed, he told me a small white lie, which bothers me as I am a very honest person and expect the same. The argument itself wasn't that big and was over something silly. I am completely opposite of my mum, I would never put up with a cheater, or an abusive boyfriend. Think that's why my mum doesnt understand why I don't feel 'lucky' just because he doesn't beat me up :/
I just don't know how to stop believing what my mum says. Also I want to shake sense into her, but it seems so impossible.
My counsellor spent a lot of time trying to tell me not to listen to my family and I did that, but now that my sessions have stopped it's increasingly hard to stay strong.
My partner realised he was in the wrong and apologised about telling a lie which was only a tiny lie, but I don't put up with much to be honest... So if he himself sees he is wrong and says sorry, why then would my mum still accuse me of 'pushing him too far'
"I am completely opposite of my mum, I would never put up with a cheater, or an abusive boyfriend. "
That's good, but just be conscious that abuse takes many forms, some more subtle than others. Someone who has witnessed physical abuse may think that, as long as they are not being hit or cheated on, they are in a good relationship. That is not necessarily the case. Abuse can be far more subtle.
For example.... If the argument was entirely your DP's fault, for example, why did he immediately disappear to his parents' house like a child rather than resolve the matter, like an adult, face to face with you? And why did you feel it was your job to go chasing after him and make the peace rather than him come to you to apologise? Do you see what I mean? I would call that little sequence of events manipulative on his part.... he knew you'd come running.
It's far easier for them to see you as a problem than to accept that their drinking is the problem and make changes to themselves.
I don't really have any tips for dealing with them as I chose to cut my dad out of my life completely. Toxic Parents by Susan Forward may help you.
"why then would my mum still accuse me of 'pushing him too far'"
Your mother, sadly, can only see things from her rather warped perspective. She has clearly justified her mistreatment over the years as being her fault for 'pushing him too far'. For her to accept that partners should behave in a civilised manner, no matter how much someone is 'pushed', would be for her to admit that she has been wrong for years and years. Rather than do that, she prefers to ignore the truth and keep peddling the lie.
@ Cogito - I do agree that I have in the past been known to stay in dysfunctional relationships because of my mothers persistance in hers' - I also have been the cause of some of the dysfunction in all of my relationships, however I have gone through a long process (a year of CBT) to try and change my dysfunctional ways. I have diagnosed OCD and am very insecure and anxious, but everyone has noticed a big change over the last year in how much better I deal with stressful situations.
My partner did act as a child and I am annoyed he didn't come back here - He has repeatedly said how stupid he was for leaving and that it was ridiculous of him as it was him that was at fault.
He can be childish, but I can't ignore the amount he has changed since we have been together, he does try very hard. I said to him he can't go walking out like that now that we have a child.
I do worry I don't understand what a 'happy' relationship is. I think I'm happy most of the time?
@ AKiss - My mum and dad make comments on how they are going to 'cut down' on their drinking all of the time, but I don't think they realise how dependant they are on it. Everytime they mean to cut down they can't
Also that makes a lot of sense cogito, my mother has a problem admitting she's wrong at the best of times, let alone admitting she has been wrong for 30 years of her life
Just a random thought: do you look more like your mother's side of the family and your sister more like your father's? Because your mother doesn't seem to value herself that much, so maybe she doesn't value the child that resembles her. Or it may be that your sister came along earlier when they still had some love to spare and they were still in the habit of being loving towards her, but ten years on another child was just seen as an inconvenience (or rather, all too convenient to blame everything on).
Well done both you and your sister for growing up as decent human beings despite all.
To be honest me and my sister look very alike, despite being 10 years a part people still see me out who don't know me and realise i'm her sister when she isn't even there lol.
My mum is always trying to figure who I get my personality from. Wish she could just see I'm not actually like her or my father. She consistently says 'you get that from me' or 'you get that from your dad' ... I am far from anything like them, firstly me and my partner don't shout when we argue near Max generally, we will speak in calm voices as much as possible, secondly I don't have a drink problem and thirdly I wouldn't put up with anything like what my mum did.
I'm just so sick of them being oblivious to her faults and my fathers faults. I make mistakes and can be dysfunctional, but atleast I can see that. She is in so much denial and they actually think that the way they used to fight and argue is something to look back and laugh about :/ I didn't find it very funny and neither did my sister
"I'm just so sick of them being oblivious to her faults and my fathers faults."
Many people are like this to a degree. It takes a certain intelligence, self-awareness and humility to accept 'I'm not perfect'. Not everyone possesses those qualities or wants to face up to the logical next step which is that dealing with imperfections & mistakes take a bit of effort. It's far easier, if you think about it, to carry on deluding yourself that it is not a problem to be .....overweight/alcoholic/up to your neck in debt/etc.... than to actually do something constructive about it. It's far easier to justify that decision to do nothing if you put it about that you're OK, it's everyone else with the problem!
All parents are either a 'good example' or a 'dire warning'. If you carry on seeing yours as the latter, keep your own high standards, and look at their bizarre behaviour much as an anthropologist might look at the habits of some remote tribe in the jungle... i.e. interesting in a disconnected kind of way ... then you'll be fine.
Yeah I am consistently trying to work on my faults of which I have plenty, I don't think I'll ever stop trying to better myself... I have just had a long rant to my sister about it all and she was very supportive and as much as they treat her as she is more special than me, she is still more than familiar with their horrible sides!! Thanks guys I feel a lot better after speaking on here and having a long rant with my sis. I just need to stop going to my mum for advice, she is too damaged to give any that is constructive!!
Yeah mine are just as bad. I've cut my dad out of my life and wouldn't go to my mum for any kind of relationship advice. She still comes out with such gems as it's ok for your husband to have sex with you if you don't want it. DP and I just laugh at her bad advice. She won't change.
Are you familiar with Philip Larkin's This Be The Verse'?
'They fuck you up, your mum and dad.
They may not mean to, but they do.
They fill you with the faults they had
And add some extra, just for you.
But they were fucked up in their turn
By fools in old-style hats and coats,
Who half the time were soppy-stern
And half at one anothers throats.
Man hands on misery to man.
It deepens like a coastal shelf.
Get out as early as you can,
And dont have any kids yourself'.
IMO it's an accurate reflection of those who don't take time to evaluate whether the beliefs they've been brought up with are ones which should have validity for themselves and for the families they will go on to create.
It seems to me you're doing as much as is humanly possible to let the rot stop with you, as it were, and the more you recognise your dps and, consequently, your childhood as being dysfunctional, the more chance you'll have of not letting history repeat itself - and that's a great deal more than many folk bother to do.
I was aware of that poem but haven't heard it in a long time, thank you for re-introducing it to me as it rings soooo true!! I think Its speaking to other people like yourselves that remind me not to take advice from someone who themselves never did.
My mum has continued on the same path for 30 years landing her in a place where she has lost all of her resolve, she used to know it wasn't her fault he hit her and it wasn't her fault he cheated, now she sounds like a weak abused woman, which instead of making me feel sorry for her actually makes me angry.
She has completely lost herself especially since her mum, my dear Nan who passed away 10 years ago (My Nan was a strong woman with high morals and wouldn't tolerate all this nonsense my mum is spouting)... In that ten years my mum has become more and more alcohol dependent and my parents don't know how to properly talk to each other unless they have had a drink. I am so glad I realised the error of their ways and am trying to be better for my son!!
Thanks for all of the replies guys, they are all so appreciated its nice to hear other peoples opinions, my parents would have me believe that the way they are is 'normal' :/ if they had it their way
and @AKiss can't believe your mum said that - My partner also laughs at some of the things my parents say. He couldn't even believe that my mum was taking his side in the argument that was his fault!!
think my mum is in a mood with me because I said that she sounded ridiculous yesterday... :/
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