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All my relationships are going bad. Is it me?

(10 Posts)
SuziQT Mon 04-Aug-08 20:15:53

I don't know where to start. My relationship with my inlaws is dreadful. My MIL has spent 12 years trying to split my husband and I up and we have had a series of rifts with his parents over the years as my husband continually takes my side to my MIL's fury. We are at the start of another rift now and haven't heard from them for 6 months. I feel upset and angry about this. I have always tried my best with them, but I will never be good enough for him in her eyes.

My relationship with my own mother has never been easy, but I have just returned from a week's holiday with her at her house with my husband and children which was a total nightmare. I feel that I do not want to go back there again. My Mum is a very cold woman. She seems reluctant to help me with the kids, constantly criticises their behaviour and refused to look after them for just two hours to give me a break with dh.

I have three children of 3, 4 and 5 and am finding it hard to cope with them. We live abroad. My husband works long hours and I get very little help with them from him (he needs a break too, but we have nowhere to turn for this). I find I have no patience left with the children and feel some days I shout and tell them off all day. They are three boys and they fight all the time.

The icing on the cake is that I now feel paranoid about my relationship with my husband which has always been good. I wonder if he blames me for the rifts with his family, although he says he doesn't. I feel I am now questioning his love for me. I wonder if he feels I expect too much of my mother and that I shouldn't get so upset when I get rejected by her over and over again. We have started arguing a lot over this. He says I am getting at him all the time. I didn't think I was. Maybe I am expecting my relationship with him to go bad..... but maybe I am making it go bad? A self fulfilling prophecy. I can't stop myself.

I feel that there is a big black cloud over my head and that all the relationships around me are disintegrating. I can't shake this feeling. I am questioning my state of mind and wondering if I am a bad person. I feel really strange.

feedmenow Mon 04-Aug-08 20:42:39

Hi Suzi. Bit of a toughy here!
Firstly, your dh chose to marry you - it is not his parents choice. I realise it must be horrible to feel that his mum is trying to split you up but remember that dh is a grown man and made his own choices. he obviously loved you then and I assume still loves you now. The relationship with inlaws is obviously far from ideal but is not your doing by the sounds of it. Poor dh for being stick in the middle, but they are HIS parents. You don't need to be good enough for them when you are obviously already good enough for him.

Try not to question whether dh loves you/blames you. If you have asked him outright and he says he doesn't blame you then that is that. My only suggestion there would be to let him know that if he DOES think that deep down then you would rather know about it and try and do something about it than him secretly blame you and fester on it.

As for your own mum, probably not much you can do there sad If she has always been this way then you are unlikely to get her to change, but that doesn't mean it is your fault. Does your mum know you could actually do with some help? Maybe she just needs you to ask?

Whatever, please try not to think or feel that you are the cause of any of this. Surely you have RL friends and having them must make you see that you can't be held responsible for other difficult relationships in your life?

SuziQT Mon 04-Aug-08 20:54:04

Thanks FMN! Yes I do have RL friends although we live abroad and we see a lot less of them and my new overseas friends.... well, I do not want to bore them with all this. They are new friends and I do not want to scare them off!

I think my overwhelming feeling is of being out of control at the moment. 7 months ago things were blissful.... now it feels everything is going to sh%t.

I have had this doomy feeling for a few weeks now and because of it, I seem to be making things worse...

I asked my Mum to look after the kids and she said no. I DIDN'T say that I really needed a break. Wouldn't ahve made any difference.

I asked my husband at the weekend whether I should see a counsellor and he was adamant no. He said they might just put me on pills. I just feel a bit..... strange.

SuziQT Mon 04-Aug-08 20:58:32

... I meant the counsellor might send me to see a doctor who would put me on pills.... doh

Ally90 Mon 04-Aug-08 21:03:00


Would you like to come and vent on the Stately Homes thread?

The feelings you describe are the one's I have after being in contact with my mother. The world just caves in, everything is bad, you are bad, everything is wrong. It will pass, if you start to recognise your mother being unloving is not your fault. And you keep a distance (emotional or physical) to protect yourself from her.

Your relationship with your mother and father will inevitably impact on the other important relationships in your life ie with dh and dc. It can be worked on though.

All is not lost, you will come out of this just need to work on not going back there again...get yourself into a positive cycle...less contact with mother? Stop trying to fix the unfixable with your mil, speak to dh about how you are feeling, realise that it is hard with 3 boys 5 and under...and no breaks. If you are hard on yourself about it, you will find it harder to change and break the cycle.

Hope some of this makes sense...

PhDlifeNeedsaNewLife Mon 04-Aug-08 21:04:38

Hi Suzy, I have a teeny idea how you feel - after 6 years in UK pulling out all the stops I realised I had no friends - soon as I stopped calling them, all those relationships vanished. At the same time I managed to have a massive row with my best friend of 12 years. Mum has always been heavy going, we just lurch from disappointment to disappointment with each other.

I also thought it was me. For a while. Then a good counsellor snorted at that idea

So I am hereby passing on her <snort> to you. Give yourself a pat on the back - just by still standing, you are doing pretty well under difficult circumstances.

SuziQT Mon 04-Aug-08 21:14:26

Thank you Ally90. Yes... things have got really bad since seeing my Mum. We returned home from the UK on Saturday. My dh is frustrated with me "but your mother has always been cold and never given very much. I understand that you are upset, but what else did you expect?"

I have already decided to distance myself from my Mum. I cannot put myself through any more rejection. I feel I have had it all my life, on and off. She would disagree.

Ta PHDLife!

feedmenow Mon 04-Aug-08 21:18:13

Suzi, I reckon you should concentrate your efforts on the positive relationships in your life. You can't change the not-so-good/outright crap ones so give the decent ones some more time and let them build you up and hopefully you'll start to feel better in yourself.

PhDlifeNeedsaNewLife Mon 04-Aug-08 21:22:40

I gave up on my mum for a while, because she was just so rejecting/critical all the bloody time. I didn't speak to her for four years - only went back when she was hospitalised with cancer. She's okay now. She does not see that her behaviour has ever had anything to do with problems between us. hmm

You can't fix 'em when they're like that, and you can't be responsible for fixing the relationship, either. Just fix your own response to it - make "that's just how she is" your mantra. Good luck with that.

Ally90 Mon 04-Aug-08 21:34:09

<sigh> men are so 'logical' (experienced this myself as have others on thread!). Yes mentally you probably knew she would be like this. On an emotional level you always hope for more. And that is why your on an emotional rollercoaster now.

I know it all feels bad right now, but honestly it does get better. I only realised recently when another poster on the Stately's thread posted their experiences after seeing their mother to see the similarities in our responses to being in contact (we are both out of contact with our families).

It sounds like you are close to a breakthrough about your mother...councellors are a good idea, interviewing them first is a good idea (as many as it takes to find the right one)... Pills can help you get back on a level for the councelling to work for some. Up to you as to what you feel you need.

Right now just be gentle on yourself...stop beating yourself up for things that are not all your fault...relationships are 50% your responsibility and 50% the other persons responsibility. And you are both 100% responsible for your 50% (see...councellors are worth it wink)

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