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Emotionally neglecting parent In my past.(22 Posts)
My mum is driving round the bend and I don’t know how to react to her.
But of background. I moved back in last year as I fled from domestic abuse. It was meant to be temporary but due to husband not willing to co-operate or move out of house so me and dd (4) can go back or sell etc etc I’m here whilst it goes through the courts.
I’ve discovered since being here that my mum was emotionally neglectful my Whole childhood. Probably the reason I got into that abusive marriage. Anyway I’m pissed off all the time with her. She doesn’t have a clue. She is not as bad as she was but she irritates me, constantly pecking at me and criticising what I dress dd in for example. I’m just so annoyed with her for neglecting my needs. Telling her does nothing as she just denies. For example she used to put her foot down in the car and drive fast, sometimes at a wall if she was angry at me as a teenager. I’d forgotten about it all. I never put this together with my anxiety as a young adult.
She puts me into fight or flight now, which means I’m constantly irritated. I don’t know how long the court process will take and I’m struggling to hold it in.
What can I do??
No advice. But you might find the stately homes thread helpful for both support and advice. It's a thread for the adult children of abusive parents. And given what you've written she is or was abusive as well as neglectful.
That looks good I’ll have a read later. if I can make it that long before my head explodes!
Oh , I know how you feel. My mother is the same and she's so bloody lovely to everyone else so I get no sympathy from others, quite the opposite. I get a lot of "I wish my mum was like yours". Aye, whatever..... I'd swap her if I could .
My mum began parenting by being quite overtly abusive , physical abuse, neglect etc but as I got older it got more and more subtle and harder to pinpoint . It took me decades to recognise things she did like triangulation ( between me and my siblings) , she used to exclude me a lot from things, constant "deniable" critisisms and always making sure I knew I wasn't good enough in her eyes.... But very few things you can point to and describe so people would understand how frustrating it was.
I'm older now and I have very low contact with her , it's amazing and it's the only way to go. You cannot have a relationship with a person who is abusive to you. You just can't. You have my sympathy, it's difficult .
This doesn’t sound like a sustainable or healthy environment for you and your DD to be in as you process the abuse of your xP.
You are v vulnerable and raw right now and lots of insights will be popping into your head from your childhood that have been blocked. You need the time, privacy, emotional and physical space to process all of that.
Your DM is negatively part of your narrative and emotional history which may have left you with poor boundaries and low self esteem to end up with xP. However her behaviour right now is also not helping you - - and is probably exacerbated by you having your DD and thinking how did your DM treat you so poorly.
Your MH needs to be in better shape to help your own DD and give her the best chance as she will have absorbed the toxicity of your RS. Are you getting professional help?
Do you have options to move on for a few month so somewhere else? How long will the court case and house sale take?
Invest in and prioritise the restoration of your MH - do everything you can to achieve this because this is what will be the foundation of you and your DD life.
Imo make sure it's you making all the decisions for your dd. Easy for dm to try and take over under her roof...
Your dd - and your mh - needs to see you are the one raising her and dm isn't getting to mentally abuse her.
Sorry but abuse sounds how she was with you..
I am nc with a rubbish dm..
I don’t know how long the court case will be, I’ve only just applied. This house and my mum is stopping me from moving on. I was a victim in this house and just my mums voice is triggering me, even though she isn’t like she was at all. But still I can’t forget and I’m getting fed up pussy footing around her and her comments. We have zero emotional relationship. She has no idea of the abuse from my husband and bits I do say she isn’t interested. I feel like I’m an intruder in this house, I don’t feel at home.
I don’t know how to feel about her and how to behave towards her. Because of her I’ve pretty much f****d up the whole of my adult life so far, 37 years. Wasted my masters Degree, married a monster because the fear of going home after my masters was greater then taking the plunge with a man I barely knew. That turned out to be awful. But if it wasn’t for that marriage perhaps I’d never had been aware of why I’ve always felt so anxious, never good enough, always needing saving. Because of her I’ve never felt loved, when my husband hurt me I never had anyone to go to. She taught me love hurts. Now she is ill, alone and I feel like I have to be here for her but deep down I kind of hate her now. I used to fear her but not anymore.
OP you need to find somewhere else to live. Are you aware that this also counts as domestic abuse and you may be entitled to housing? Can you contact Shelter tomorrow and speak to them. Explain that you've moved out of the home and into another abusive home. They'll advise you on where to go from here.
I also suggest you contact your local domestic abuse organisation which you can find here.
Once things have opened up a bit, I suggest you try to get onto the Freedom Programme. I also suggest you look into counselling specifically for abused and neglected children. Take a look at BACP or contact NAPAC for guidance on appropriate counsellors.
I'm unsure if you received advice before you moved out of your home but if you need legal advice, contact Rights of Women or FLOWS, both of which can give you legal advice.
Also check out C-PTSD and see if it rings any bells. If it does, there's a great book by Pete Walker you may find useful. CPTSD surviving to thriving or you can see what's available online.
Yes I have been told I have c-PTSD.
I don’t necessarily feels abused by her now but I remember it very well. I’m not sure how to behave towards her for her past behaviour.
Sorry OP, I didn't look at the name. You have already done part of the Freedom Programme, you have an IDVA so I assume they've already told you your housing options. My bad for not checking.
The way you behave towards her is by keeping away from her. She is triggering you. Anyone who drives towards a wall with their child in the car to scare the crap out of them should be kept away from. That's something you really should be exploring via therapy and I understand you're organising that.
My advice is to move out asap.
I know I need to move out it’s just so bloody awkward at the moment. My IDVA says to put all my energy into the divorce and getting my house back but it’s at the court there’s nothing I can do but wait.
I didn’t realise at the time I had fled to somewhere else where I was abused. I never put my anxiety and my mum together. She is less causing me anxiety this time, she is triggering a different flight fight mode and I’m angry. But now I have this anger and nowhere to put it so it’s building. I’ve learnt the hard way what inexpressed energy from emotions causes chaos!
The trouble is all that abuse was in the past, that’s over, the damage has been done. She isn’t doing that but she is acting normal and I’m angry!
Oh the fight/flight response causes havoc on your body. It releases hormones like cortisol and adrenaline , it's exhausting . There was a period of my life that just aged me massively because of the toll it took. Take care of yourself as much as humanly possible. Get out the house or get into relaxation techniques in your room/space. Try and listen to headphones and/or read as much as you can. Anything to try and neutralise your reaction as much as possible.
The abuse isn’t in the past - you are emotionally feeling it day in day out whilst you are there right now. That’s what c-PTSD is -it’s not a visual flashback - it’s emotional flashbacks - so the flooding feelings of panic, stress, anxiety at the heightened intensity (huge surge) that you had as a child - this is exhausting and eroding you. It means you are hyper vigilant all the time because you are being emotionally triggered in the threatening environment even if the threat isn’t as bad - your mind and body is reacting to it as if it is.
You really need to move out - you risk imploding. You cannot get your energy back or your focus on your child whilst living in this emotional quicksand.
What options do you have?
None apart from a refuge I guess. I have to go back to work next week also and no pre-school open. I can’t go back to the house because he won’t move out. He isn’t allowed contact with dd so cant go. Can’t get an occupation order as I left it too long. She is good with my daughter it’s just my memories which are causing havoc or this c-PTSD. I’m irritated all the time because of what she did and not able to tell her because it will make no difference.
I’ll never have a bond with her even if I did tell her, she is just a person who I share a house with that I know is my mum but feel not much at all. Burn now she is old and I feel bad for not really caring.
I need to build a barrier of some kind between me and her.
Yes, it's called being in a different location and not answering her calls.
We've had this conversation before OP. I have no idea why you thought it would be a good idea to move in with someone who terrorised you when you were a vulnerable child. Whatever those reasons were, it's triggering you daily. You are already traumatised from a decade in an abusive marriage and now you are being triggered in another home further compounding your trauma.
Can you make the connection with your anger and difficulty in healing and being back in the house with someone who abused you as a child?
I don't understand what is going on with your IDVA. If it's as you say and, despite knowing that you were abused by your mother, they advised you to move back in with her and stay there until the issues with the family home were resolved - they are doing an appalling job of helping you. I would make a complaint and try to get another IDVA. I cannot imagine someone who specialises in abuse telling a traumatised client to move into another abusive household when they have already been diagnosed with C-PTSD. I can only assume they're nuts and can't be trusted.
Your IDVA should have been able to advise you on housing. However, you're saying that they haven't which doesn't surprise me since they seem poorly trained and irresponsible. Therefore, contact Shelter who should be able to advise you. You would feel safer in a location unknown to your ex, at the moment you are on egg shells knowing he could turn up at any time.
You can't heal while you're in a house that's constantly triggering you. It's impossible and it was a really bad idea to move back in with her. I understand that you were perhaps fleeing your abusive ex but that was a while ago now and you've had time to research other options.
Your options are: 1. Approach the council, tell them you have been left homeless after fleeing domestic abuse. 2. Find somewhere to rent privately, even a house share is better for you than where you are. You are not safe there mentally or physically and you won't start to heal there.
A refuge is somewhere you flee when you are trying to get away from an aggressor. A refuge is a safe space where the location is unknown to your aggressor and it has trained workers there who can advise. I wouldn't suggest going to a refuge now. I would when you first left rather than going to your mother's but not now. Now you can use the internet and make calls and find somewhere more suitable to live.
OP the reason who are struggling so much is because you are living with an abuser. Just because your mother is no longer driving at walls in order to terrorise you, doesn't meant she's changed. For the sake of your physical and mental health you need to move out and find somewhere else to live.
I'm not sure what the 'legal' issues are regarding the house - how hard is it to divorce and sell the place? People do it every day, what's the hold up? What are you trying to achieve through the courts?
I didn’t realise till very recently about my past, it had been hidden deep and only came up when I was talking to my IDVA about something, then I remembered it all.
The divorce is hard because he won’t co-operate so I had to wait for the petition to be deemed to be served. Now wait for the court process because he won’t acknowledge that the house needs settling.
He’s told me the only way he will move with the house is if he gets arrested. So that means I have to wait till right to the end of the process.
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