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Relationship with mum(4 Posts)
Im struggling with my feelings towards my mum. I have a toddler and another baby on the way. Mum and dad are still together and I must see he is just simply amazing. He is so supportive/helpful and caring towards DS which is the only saving grace here. Basically I never know what state she is going to be in at any given time. We make arrangements, turn up and she's completely drunk. It's an embarrassment. I totally understand that she has an illness, but she fails to accept this, we've all spent years trying to support and help her whilst being understanding and to be perfectly honest I'm totally exhausted. My son is 2 and picks up on absolutely everything, I would be devestated if he asked why his gran was strange. It's only a matter of time before that happens. He's way too young to have to be around this. I would feel better stopping contact but then I feel he loses out and she does have good days. Plus my dad would be devestated at losing out on time with his grand kids and would likely end in him leaving her. What on earth do I do?!
I literally can't look at her...she's my mother and I'm disgusted I feel this way. I don't worry for my kids safety and never leave them alone with her, but it terrifies me that they are growing up around this...
The 3cs re alcoholism are again very much prescient:-
You did not cause this
You cannot control this
You cannot cure this
Why do you feel disgusted at feeling the ways you do; its perfectly understandable actually and not disgusting at all. Your mother's primary relationship is with drink and her main thoughts centre on where the next drink is going to come from.
If you can't look at her why would you want to at all subject your children to her as well?. Your mother is more often than not drunk; that's not nice for you to be around let alone your child. He is as you rightly state too young to be around this. So he should not be; you should stay away from her as well. Her "good days" are probably not as good as you think they are either; she is likely to be on a comedown from alcohol and is likely as well never fully sober.
Your children do not have to grow up around this; you have a choice here re your parents and your children do not. I would not let your dad off the hook here; he has enabled his wife here. They are currently together for their own reasons, they get what they each want from the relationship.
Re your comment:-
"Plus my dad would be devastated at losing out on time with his grand kids and would likely end in him leaving her".
Why would this happen, would he not ever want to see his grandchildren without his wife being present?. He could see them without his wife there. Has he actually mentioned anything to you about leaving her? If not that is mere supposition on your part.
Re this comment:-
"we've all spent years trying to support and help her whilst being understanding and to be perfectly honest I'm totally exhausted".
Alcoholism is truly a family disease that does not just affect the alcoholic;' the above is classic and shows how much you are all affected by this.
Your own process of recovery from your mother's alcoholism will only properly begin when you yourself decide to get off the merry go around and properly detach.
Those actions have been a fundamental error, you cannot rescue and or save people who do not want to be saved. She does not want your help or support and family members are the last ones who can help the alcoholic; you are all way too overinvested and mired in the alcoholic's problems. Like many posts of this type it is mainly about the alcoholic; everyone tiptoes around them.
You can only help your own self ultimately and a good step for you to take here would be to today contact Al-anon and read their literature. Your dad should do that as well as well as attending those meetings, they are very good with family members of problem drinkers.
Confidential Helpline 020 7403 0888
(Helpline available 10 am - 10 pm, 365 days a year)
Thanks for the response! An interesting read. My dad would absolutely continue to see our kids without her there, but with the practicalities of it all (overnight stays wouldn't be an option for example) would ultimately mean that it would happen less.
I've spoken to my dad a lot on this and he's been out the door a few times, right now he is in the space where he feels the woman he fell in love with it still in there and until he doesn't see her anymore he will stay with her. Both noble but frustrating at the same time. He has on a Humber of occasions let her know that if there is ever a choice between her and the kids tho - he's out. He adores his grandchildren more than anything.
I do think he enabled this behaviour over a long number of years and may even have contributed towards it...but ultimately he's paying a heavy price with his own happiness (in my opinion) to stay and support her.
She's a very weak woman and I really don't think she's survive without my dad there so I think he feels an obligation - perhaps out of guilt.
I've tried AA meetings before and I didn't find it much help. However that was very early days and perhaps I wasn't In the place I am now.
Interesting metaphor with a merry go round - that's exactly what it is!!
Ps I think I feel disgusted with my feelings as a mother I would be crushed if my children said these things/had these feelings about me. She is my mum and I thought I would always feel that connection. But ultimately I only feel anger...or nothingness
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