Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

Realisation: My Family Don't Like Me.

(20 Posts)
YesAnastasia Wed 31-Aug-16 11:00:54

It's always been put onto me. "it's your depression, you always think people don't like you"

It isn't. They don't like who I really am. They dismiss/deride/ignore so much of my personality that what's left is absolutely fake. They do it now, when I am nearly 40 & have family of my own. They only like it when I pretend to be someone I am not.

I do have severe depressive disorder but I'm managing it and what came first? This treatment of who I am? Or the depression?

My family always say that I started to be 'difficult' in my early teens. I now believe that in those years my real highly sensitive personality (not DEPRESSION) was coming to light much more and the way I was dealt with created/caused the depression which I admit I am prone to. So maybe not. That bit I'm not sure of.

I can't believe the loyalty and love I have had for these people all this time. I have been there for them all unconditionally for my whole life and to them, if I need them I'm an inconvenience, a bad person or generally dramatic and self indulgent. I want to be out but I know I can't.

Then I go & choose a husband who treats me exactly the same.

AristotlesTrousers Fri 02-Sep-16 08:01:45

Hi OP. I didn't want to read and run, but just wanted to say that you might get more of a response if you report your post to MNHQ and get the thread moved to Relationships. I think you'll find a few others who can relate to what you've described, and plenty of support.

It can be scary when you start to realise that your family may be different to how you've perceived them for a long time, but it's great that you've recognised this and can start to heal. flowers

DamnGood314 Fri 02-Sep-16 08:07:48

Welcome to the club OP. Have you had psychotherapy? It really helps.

My parents' are good people but they've no self-awareness at all which is frustrating. They are incapable of understanding that they don't acknowledged the real me either. If I try to tell them what I really think they tell me that I'm wrong confused or I'm being awkward, I'm making a point, I'm paranoid... They're still trying to mould me.

They controlled you with approval and disapproval?

And they think they're perfect and you're spiky/awkward/making a point?

YesAnastasia Sat 03-Sep-16 17:32:08

Thank you for your replies, I was on my own when I realised this so had no one to tell. (Although I can't think of a single person I would tell anyway...)

ALL that, DamnGood My DH tells me I'm wrong all the time too. I think too much, I look too deep into things, I feel too much. It's just how I am but I'm just generally too much for everyone.

Yes, they have always tried to control me with approval/disapproval and with shaming me, making me feel low and embarrassed by who I am, the way I am. Yes, absolutely all that.

So it's possible to 'heal' Aristotle, I'm in couple's counselling at the moment but I have the opportunity to see her on my own next week. Do you have any advice on where to start? I only have her for an hour on my own, DH is back next week sad

DamnGood314 Sat 03-Sep-16 17:36:44

Oh sod that! Since when was thinking a bad thing.

I had that from an x recently actually! ''you think too much'' and then he dumped me because of what he had decided I was thinking, and he told me I'm dumping you because we're on different pages! I wasn't stuck to that guy so it doesn't matter, but telling your partner ''you think too much'' is a stupid thing to say.

I might say ''you don't need to worry about that'' or say '' you can't change them'' but to tell somebody that they think too much about a problem that is REAL, you must be roaring inside.

AristotlesTrousers Sat 03-Sep-16 20:13:55

So it's possible to 'heal' Aristotle

I wish I knew the answer, Anastasia, but I think by learning to trust in the person you are inside is a good start - not easy to do, mind, but counselling will help with that.

Your DH doesn't sound very supportive though. Is there any way you could have more counselling on your own?

I'm still learning that it's okay to be myself instead of the 'pretend' me I have to be most of the time (I grew up with and am still surrounded by people who think I'm 'too much', but I know better now - had a lightbulb moment a couple of years ago).

It won't be an easy path, OP. I think once you know these things, you can't 'unknow' them, but I'm sure the real you is worth far more than you've ever given yourself credit for.

AristotlesTrousers Sat 03-Sep-16 20:16:20

Two book recommendations too:

'Toxic Parents' by Susan Forward and 'If You Had Controlling Parents' by Dan Neuharth

DawnMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 05-Sep-16 00:06:07

Hi, we're moving this thread to our Relationships topic at the OP's request.

Hope you get plenty more advice and support over there, Yes flowers

YesAnastasia Tue 06-Sep-16 22:31:30

I've been having counselling and I don't want to focus on them (esp DM) but I have no idea how to work through the issues I have without having to discuss them. Does anyone have any counselling tips?

I'd really like to have NC, at least for a little while so I can get myself grounded and start to be able to think clearly but we all live in the same effing village (my fault...) so that's unrealistic until we move.

Memoires Tue 06-Sep-16 22:44:11

Why don't you want to concentrate on them, or discuss them in counselling? It sounds like they're probably at the root of your problems.

YesAnastasia Tue 06-Sep-16 22:56:33

Yes, I understand that but I need to become more resilient, build up my confidence and take control of my own feelings rather than blame others for how I feel.

Plus I find counselling really harrowing when I have to discuss in depth things that have scarred me. And it's expensive so would rather get past all that and work on the now. Is that possible?

TheSparrowhawk Wed 07-Sep-16 07:47:42

No, it's not possible. Counselling brings problems to light. This is a major problem for you. If you ignore it any work you do on now will only have a temporary effect.

My parents are similar. I live in a different country and am very LC with them. I have dealt with it as much as I can for now but I don't think I'll ever heal as such - nothing makes up for your parents not loving you IMO.

BreatheDeep Wed 07-Sep-16 07:54:40

Most of who you are 'now' will stem with how you have been treated your whole life. I don't think you can work on 'you' until you understand why you are 'you'. And that is partly because of your parents so you'll have to deal with that. If that makes sense.

DamnGood314 Wed 07-Sep-16 08:23:22

It's not just therapy that can make it harder to 'ignore' your parents' parenting. I have found that a few relationships (failed of course) have made me feel anger and sadness at the effect my parents' parenting has had on me. they would NEVER ackowledge it and maybt that wouldn't help. OP you're married is that right? I hope the relationship is good.
I realised that I was confusing the half-interested/interested-up-to-a-point/interested in you a a friendly only sorry/only interested in sex field of half way house confusion a trigger. I was confusing that for butterflies.
Anyway, just adding that 2 cents. It's not only therapy that can make things harder to ignore. Just plain life, and new insights can do that, so have the therapy and deal with the insights sooner rather than later because I wish I'd realised this stuff decades ago.

DamnGood314 Wed 07-Sep-16 08:25:36

ps, and it's not supposed to be about blame. It's supposed to be about understanding the shape of the wound so you can try and read the right shaped articles and do the right shaped exercises.

PsychedelicSheep Wed 07-Sep-16 08:40:59

You could try CBT if you want to focus primarily on the now. They will touch on your past but only to formulate the problem in terms of what you learned about self/world/others growing up and how that impacts the way you think/ process information in the present.

DamnGood314 Wed 07-Sep-16 08:51:23

Sorry, I forgot that you said that your H tells you that you're wrong and that you're overthinking. Apologies for forgetfulness! brew

olives106 Wed 07-Sep-16 10:49:02

Oh my goodness, I could have written this! Except for the husband part, I've never really managed a long term relationship. "You think too much", I thought I was the only person who'd ever been told this!

I'm in counselling at the moment and finding it very hard going. To be honest, this is my second attempt at psychotherapy and the first, years ago, just pushed me into another serious depressive episode and I'm worried this one is going the same way. I had CBT and found it helpful at the time but as someone else said, the effects were fairly temporary. So I'm pushing on with the counselling and hoping to get past the depression to get some more lasting results but it feels like a big risk. So much comes up that hurts badly.

Things I have found helpful so far include mindfulness meditation and yoga, because they encourage you to listen to and accept yourself. I also find it useful to think of all the strengths my sensitivity and difficult life experiences have brought me, such as compassion, gentleness, empathy, and an enquiring mind. To be honest, right now I'd trade in a blink for an 'easier' personality set up, but that isn't an option and I have to try to accept and work with what I have.

YesAnastasia Thu 08-Sep-16 12:50:56

Yes, I don't really understand mindfulness. I have read a book and everything, I just can't get my head around it. Perhaps because it's just common sense & I already do it OR I'm too highly strung to even understand...?

Meditation. I wish I could do that. I will try again. I actually do just sit & think sometimes. I don't like the TV or radio on (favourite music if I'm cleaning but that's not often tbh) & if I'm not reading I will just find a nice place to just think. Perhaps actual meditation isn't too far from this & I just need to learn how.

Yoga I can do! My moderately flexible body pleases me when I remember to do it.

My counselling session went really well and I already have a few tasks to complete before next time. I have some positive phrases to read & re-read over & over so they go in (reading them out loud helps apparently) so I'm looking forwards, thinking about the 'now'.

I have some psychology/awareness reading to do that will also help (i'm a sucker for a self help book)

I think you're all right in saying that I have to work through the issues rather than ignoring them because they're too painful. I will. I'm just donning my emotional armour first smile

Thank you everyone.

pocketsaviour Thu 08-Sep-16 14:40:17

Hi OP, you are taking your first steps on a long road to recovery. Yes, healing is possible. It is hard and at times you will feel like you're making yourself feel worse, but it's worth the journey.

A book that might really help you is Alice Miller's The Drama of Being A Child - there are several points you've written about which chime really closely with her writing. In addition to the two recommended books above, Toxic Parents and Controlling Parents.

Also have a look for the Stately Homes thread on here.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now