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My mother and moving forward with my life(6 Posts)
Lockdown for me has been a confusing mix of having a long needed break from my mother and being in my own head too much, dwelling on the situation that has made me very ill.
She is very, very controlling. Will not take no for an answer. Nags, nags, nags. From the clothes I wear, job, parenting, house, friends, holidays, hair...you name it she wants to control it. If she cannot control it she criticizes.
She is passive aggressive. 'I don't want to make you feel guilty but....'. 'I don't want to make you feel inadequate but...'. 'I'm not complaining but...'. She gives me the silent treatment and leaves me guessing what I have done wrong.
She is a terrible grandma. 8 grandchildren and only 2 (not mine) are allowed to visit her as we all have slowly come to terms that they are psychologically not safe around her. They are either an inconvenience or a tool to boost her ego (she takes credit for their achievements but never praises them directly). She cannot cope with crying babies, noisy toddlers, moody teenagers. Everyone and everything has to be perfect.
She never coped with me and 4 siblings leaving her and getting married. Sulked at every wedding, barely gave me a civil word at my own wedding, dressed in black, scowling in the pictures. Our spouses have taken the brunt of this as she is convinced they are to blame for taking her children away from her. They will never be good enough and has tried to cause trouble in everyones marriage.
She nitpicks at everything I do and am. Small things that add up to me needing antidepressants for anxiety. When I try and defend myself she shuts me down with 'too sensitive', 'I am only being honest', 'hurt too easily'. Big, nasty things she has done is usually denied making me not want to have a conversation without witnesses. She went through a phase of excluding me from family gatherings and blaming her aging memory. But it was only ever me she would forget. I was being punished for something, but no clue as to what it was.
She has made it clear to me and sibs that we are not allowed to contact each other without her being involved - no private conversations. She becomes very agitated if we have had so much as an email convo and starts causing trouble so we will fall out with each other. We all now communicate secretly. This is not normal.
She is very cruel to my father, berates him for the slightest infringement. He never defends himself and never defends us. He is not allowed access to his own money and has to ask if he wants to buy anything. He has never been allowed friends of his own. I pity him but feel angry that he never found a backbone to stand up to her or protect us as children.
Unfortunately she is also a 'pillar of the community' and very popular to the outside world. Whenever I have opened up to anyone about my relationship with my mother I get a response of disbelief. 'But she's so nice!'. Church people have heard that I am a bad daughter because I only visit her once a month and do not allow her near my children.
So its been about 9 weeks since I last saw her. I have called a couple of times but she has made it clear that my sister is providing all her needs and she doesn't need me. Convo last no more than a minute before she puts the phone down. So have given up. It has now made me realise that not seeing her is absolute bliss. But also sad that I am not missing her in the slightess. Sad and a bit envious of people who have parents they desperately miss. Very triggered when I hear it.
I have been weaned off AD for 6 months, but I am now starting to wake up with 'that' feeling of anxiety again. Guilt, sadness, dreading lockdown finishing because things will go back to 'normal'.
Thanks for reading, and sorry for length.
I would love to write more but the kids are fighting
But just know I read myself there and if I can I will write more later.
Enjoy the silence and go to the stately homes thread
Sounds like you're better off without her. Stop ringing altogether. She's made it clear enough by hanging up on you.
I suspect you and your siblings would be much happier if you left her to it and would have better relationships with each other as a result. Ask the sister who does have contact with her not to mention anything about her to you from now on.
Mark this lockdown as the beginning of a new stress-free chapter in your life. And never feel guilty for wanting that.
She isn’t bringing you or your children any joy OP.
Would you be treated like that by a friend? No I expect not, why should you accept if from your mum? Would you treat your children like that OP? Of course you wouldn’t dream of it.
I am NC with my mum and have been for a number of years, also a very acid tongued highly critical person who is never ever wrong! My only regret is not going NC sooner. Life has been much easier since. Never once has she even sent her grandchildren a card on their birthday. Shame on her.
No one ever goes NC with a parent without very good reason. Sending you a hug OP, I know how disappointed & upset you much be at making this decision.
Sounds like you're so much better off without her - she sounds horrific! Best of luck to you
I think the reason its taken lockdown to get me to this point is that I live very near her. 10 minute walk. My brother moved 200 miles away to get away from her, visits 3 x a year for an hour. My sister lives in another city but only 30 minutes drive, visits infrequently (but still taking the children!). Other sister lives next door. She is a chip off the old block and will never cut the apron strings. Her own children have gone NC with their grandma. This sister and my mother fight like cat and dog, but at the same time are very codependent. So when they are falling out, she expects me to fill in for her until they are friends again.
Before lockdown she asked me to do a few jobs for her, moving furniture etc. I came back to her with a number of a local handyman. That went down well !(sarc). So I think that will be the future - employing other people to go into her home. We have found her cleaners but she dismisses them very quickly if she feels short-changed.
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