Talk

Advanced search

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.

Can I ask you what you think might have caused this?

(45 Posts)
January2017 Fri 06-Jan-17 16:31:46

Sorry if this ends up reading like a weird thread.

A family who are quite middle class insofar as income, home, holidays are concerned, but the wife is from a very difficult background. There is a large extended family in the wife's background - cousins and aunts and so on.

The husband and wife try for children years without success. Husband is happy to have a child free life but the wife is determined to have children. They are looking into adoption and then have two children, a boy and a girl.

After having her children the wife seems to find it hard. She rarely, if ever, plays with them. She screams a lot and both children are quite frightened of her. They spend most of the time with their father and they are very happy when this is the case. the wife uses her own cousins and aunts to look after her children regularly, and they seem to resent this and take it out on the children. However, the wife does love the children.

She drinks heavily and is dismissed from work for drinking there and being drunk in front of a class (she is a school teacher.)

She is volatile and will scream how ashamed she is of her children, how they disgust her, how she wishes they were other children (she will talk about other children a lot and tell her own children exactly why they are much better than her own) but also cuddle them and say she loves them.

She will lash out when angry, and both her children try to kill themselves before they are 13.

What's wrong with her?

SheFeedsYouTeaAndOranges Fri 06-Jan-17 16:41:40

What do you think is "wrong with her"?

January2017 Fri 06-Jan-17 16:43:07

I don't really know, that's why I'm asking here. Not asking for an actual diagnosis but any ideas people might have, anything That kind of jumps out and might make people think of something they or a relative have.

understandnothing Fri 06-Jan-17 16:57:08

Well some sort of mental health issue it would seem... perhaps bonding issues? Were the children adopted or biologically hers? It's not quite clear.

tsonlyme Fri 06-Jan-17 17:00:23

It's pretty clear to me that she's a problem drinker which would lead to all the rest that you describe.

tsonlyme Fri 06-Jan-17 17:01:11

It can happen to anyone btw regardless of class, background or circumstance.

PassTheSatsumas Fri 06-Jan-17 17:12:25

Is this sad story yours OP?

It sounds like the mother/wife had a lot of problems herself to end up that way (not excusing such awful behaviour) - maybe poor parenting/abuse herself, mental health issues and lack of help, drinking problems

This is someone who should have got help for herself instead of having kids

PassTheSatsumas Fri 06-Jan-17 17:15:06

My mother was a poor mother due to very poor parenting from her own mother (who was constantly pregnant/miscarrying/ nursing ) so left my mum unmothered and having to (resentfully) raise her siblings - it's not always due to bad intentions but does not help the poor kids involved

Drudgedread Fri 06-Jan-17 17:27:58

This sounds very like my own childhood story, scarily so. Except my df died leaving us with the dysfunctional dm.

I don't know what is wrong with them op but does it really matter? There is something wrong but it wasn't you. I understand that it feels like a diagnosis or name to blame will help. Call it whatever you like (colin?) the pain and damage will be just the same. I just think of my dm as damaged. In fact it is the other adults that were on the periphery that turned a blind eye that I struggle to forgive much more.

I probably sound glib. I don't mean to. I know the pain of this situation all too well. At some point you have to believe that none of it was your fault in order to heal. It is likely to be a complex mixture of personality disorder, addiction, mental health issues and circumstances that caused the mothers issues.

If you are the dm in this story please get help for your DC as soon as possible. I don't believe you are though op.

Heratnumber7 Fri 06-Jan-17 17:35:42

She's an alcoholic. That's what's "wrong with her"

January2017 Fri 06-Jan-17 17:38:29

Thanks ... Is it just alcoholism though? Isn't it maybe a personality disorder too?

CakeLover0 Fri 06-Jan-17 17:39:06

You could drive yourself crazy questioning what could of caused this. Like others have said a mixture of mental health, personality disorder and circumstances.
As mothers ourselves we question how our mother could behave this way. We find it difficult to understand as our children are our life. I have struggled with this for many years. I have learnt that there are no answers. None that will take me back and put it right anyway. Just a future with my own children and that settling feeling that my children are my life and I do everything possible to keep them safe, well and happy. Deeply loved.
I always think they took my past. There is no way they're taking my future.

lollylou2876 Fri 06-Jan-17 17:45:55

It sounds to me like someone who uses alcohol to cope with life, but who really needs professional help. It sounds like she has got everything she wanted but is not content for whatever reason maybe masking depression or unresolved childhood issues.

I had a horrendous childhood but I don't use it as an excuse. I'm a good mum and have found it healing to know my child will never know the horrors I faced. I feel the women described is emotional abusing her children, through words, and if she carries on being a vicious bitch undermining her own and then using alcohol as an excuse. She will lose not only her kids but eventually her gran kids.

Sorry to be harsh but the truth is the truth and I really do abhore people who are to weak to break the toxic cycles of their own childhood and inflict it on yet another generation, all the while knowing the lifelong pain and trauma it causes first hand.

She must be strong as she wouldnt of dragged/clawed herself through the shite got a degree and good life.

It's never to late to change

I also know not to use alcohol or drugs as a crutch as it leads to a vic

sweetstemcauli Fri 06-Jan-17 17:46:15

Do you think this woman might have depression that developed after the arrival of one or other of the children? (There, I avoided a diagnosis, just described the symptoms).

January2017 Fri 06-Jan-17 17:49:07

She didn't get a degree, did some courses at night school.

I don't know sweet, would it have lasted until their teens?

humanfemale Fri 06-Jan-17 18:03:16

My mother was like this. Except my dad fucked off when I was ten, leaving us with her. She has Borderline Personality Disorder and yes, sometimes was affectionate which made it all even more confusing and destructive.

ListenIda Fri 06-Jan-17 18:08:30

But why are you so invested in people on the internet making armchair diagnoses of someone who is either you or a family member of friend of yours? (Or a character in a novel you are writing?)

She sounds alcoholic, though it's not clear whether that's cause or effect, and depressed and angry.

Though I'm also interested in how she became a teacher via some courses at night school and no degree, but perhaps in a jurisdiction where this isn't abnormal?

January2017 Fri 06-Jan-17 18:09:42

Dunno, does it matter? She got two Es at A level yet expected brilliance from us.

PrettyBotanicals Fri 06-Jan-17 18:09:56

The drinking is one issue. She is clearly damaging her children that way.

Her depression and inability to connect with her children may be another issue or related. Hard to guess.

Has she always been a drinker?

Either way, her children would benefit from Al-teen at the very least they need to know they are not the cause of their mothers hurtful behaviour.

It sounds as though the mother needs intensive and immediate professional help.

FWIW, class (whatever that is) is no indicator I'd tendency to alcoholism or mental health problems. In many cases I know, wine drinking habits, the cocktail hour and shooting parties are excuses for prolonged, dangerous and problem drinking.

ListenIda Fri 06-Jan-17 18:15:39

Are you one of the children? Sorry, OP, it sounds like a very difficult upbringing. I think you need to focus on getting the support you need yourself, rather than trying to diagnose your mother, which I'm not sure really helps when you're dealing with the fallout in your own life..

Msqueen33 Fri 06-Jan-17 18:16:40

Is this your mother? Sounds like a mental health issue. Have you had counselling to deal with growing up with her?

CakeLover0 Fri 06-Jan-17 18:19:30

Like I said...don't give her any more of your time. She took your past. Do not let her take your future!
Any diagnosis won't change anything!

January2017 Fri 06-Jan-17 18:30:35

I don't know why it's bothering me so much.

SallyInSweden Fri 06-Jan-17 18:36:32

I mean this kindly, but what do you want here? We can't diagnose her, we just can't.

But we can agree that it must have been hard regardless of whether your mother has a diagnosable personality disorder or is just an alcoholic & a difficult person.

Even if she agree that she is rubbish Mum, and that her children should have been taken off her for their safety, and all of it, would it help?

If you are still in contact it might be useful to treat her as if she has, but it isn't a diagnosis.

The other thing to think about is whether you want to devote your time and energy to understanding her or helping yourself as best you can. (It should be on you!)

January2017 Fri 06-Jan-17 18:37:22

There are a lot of posters here and many of them have a breadth of experience. It might be possible that someone knew or had an idea what was going on in her head.

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