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Catch 22(1 Post)
How do I deal with a controlling/emotional/clingy mum without hurting her feelings or feeling guilty?
I think my mum has been depressed for as long as I can remember- she constantly tells me that she shouldn't have married my dad (they constantly argue), that she has a 'sad' life, that the only thing giving her any happiness now is her grand kids (my toe children). As all her family (except my aunt, her sister) are overseas, and she is not close to my dad's family, my siblings don't talk to her much, I feel a burden to 'make her happy'. If I don't spend time with her I feel that she has no one else in her life (except my aunt) who she can rely on. And it Doesn't help that one brother passed away this year so I feel that I have 'to be there for her'.
But the fact is, being around her really saps the energy out of me, makes me depressed and anxious and resentful. I love her and knows she tries to mean well but she is just emotionally clueless about respecting my boundaries. She will pass judgment on anything I do and if they are not in line with what she would do, I cop too emotional abuse- for example, even when I moved out of home for first time (to live with my his husband in my first married home!) she made me feel guilty that I didn't want to live with her (we are Asian and back in her hometown and her days it was the norm to live with parents even after mArriage) and would say things like 'you have changed since meeting your husband, you used to say you would live with us forever' (I was seventeen when I said that) and the first time she visited, on leaving she said 'you must be happy now, have your own freedom and me and your dad not around'. And 'if my mum was still alive (ie my grandma) I would definitely want to live with her'.
So from big things like moving out of home to small things she says things that are hurtful to me,makes me feel guilty and it is really affecting me. An example of something small- I was with her grocery shopping and I bought a bunch of basil to cook stirfry that night. When she saw I paid $3.50 for it she went on and on that I had overpaid and she could have bought it in her local area forechecking cheaper. I said 'it's ok mum, I don't cook this often, I'm not going to drive to your area just to save a dollar or two and it's not a big deal'. She says 'oh if you want to cook it just let me know and I'll buy it for it', me: ' but I sometimes decide to cook this on the spur of the moment so I can't always do that', her:'just get a bunch from me and keep it handy', me: 'really it's alright. Plus it's my money so no need for you to be concerned'. Her: 'yes I know but I don't want to see you wasting your money' ... I'm thinking 'like, really? It's just a bunch of basil and I know she means well but I'm 36 and she has to impose her views and what she does on me and expect me to do the same?' Whenever I talk to her about it she says I am being sensitive and makes me feel guilty for bringing it up and we end up arguing or agreeing to disagree.
Sorry for long post but think I just need to rant. Just last week she called me in the morning so she can say hi to my kids. Then she asked where I was, I said I was in town with my friend and her family. Three hours later she called me again asking I wanted to go over for dinner (I was seeing her the next day for family Lunch and day after for another family affair). I said I had dinner plans. Three hours later she called me again. Mum: 'Oh I just saw the presents you bought your brother for his birthday and I saw one of the tags for a t-shirt you have paid $35, did you really $35 for it, I can't believe you spent that much on t-shirt, is it some top brand?'.
How do I deal with my mum?i can't cut contact cos I feel really guilty. My other brother took his life from depression earlier this year and I think my mum is depressed too (but she's always been like this), I feel I need to be there for her (my aunt also keeps telling me I need to see my mum as i am 'the only one she has' and even if my mum is hurtful to me she loves me etc).
I try to not let my mums words affect me but she really is having an adverse impact on me, but I'm in the basket of 'you're damned if you do and famed if you don't' boat- I'm worried about her and encourage her to go out more and to get psychological support but she say one psychologist and said it was useless and didn't want to go anymore. And re having more of a social life she said she is not interested.
So how can i handle the situation ? I can't cut ties because I would feel guilty and then if she does spiral further in depression I would hate myself but how do I do that without myself going into depression?
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