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Relationship with mother worsening by the day

(10 Posts)
Surreal Mon 04-Jul-05 12:34:23

I used to get on well with my mum but things have changed since I had my children. When I was younger she did a lot for me (I'm an only child). But in the last few years she seems bitter about anything she's done for me. She says I should buy her presents to say thankyou for all the things she's done and I find this odd as I thought that one of the givens of parenting is that you can't expect to call in "debts".

The weird thing is, though, that she blows hot and cold -offering to do something nice seemingly with no strings attatched and then brings it up months later together with "you should buy me presents". I do buy her presesnts for birthday, mother's day etc -apparently it isn't enough for me to say thankyou very much (which I always do) for any favours.

I don't know where I stand with her at all and I have tried to discuss it in a reasonable manner but she always ends up being really nasty.

Is this just what happens sometimes?

koalabear Mon 04-Jul-05 12:35:39

how old is she? is there any other behaviour that seems odd or unreasonable?

emily05 Mon 04-Jul-05 12:36:07

Do you think that she is jelous now that you have children? If you are an only child, maybe she feels pushed out now that you have your own childre (iyswim). Which ofcourse is not your fault.

Surreal Mon 04-Jul-05 12:42:42

She's in her late 50s. Emily - I don't know if it's jealousy but my frustration comes as a result of her complete refusal to discuss anything reasonably. FWIW I have thought that her attitude about certain matters (not to do with me) has changed in the last few years -she seems very hard now.

emily05 Mon 04-Jul-05 12:43:33

This might sound odd - but is she going through the menopause? My mum has been like this you see since she started hers

Surreal Mon 04-Jul-05 12:45:13

No she went through it years ago - I don't think it's that.

colditz Mon 04-Jul-05 12:53:01

My mum got exactly like this when she hit the menopause, she turned into an evil b!tch. She threw me out of the parental home when I was 5 months pregnant, because I wore her pants by mistake (same size and brand!). She knew I was looking for somewhere to live, she knew I had nowhere to go (spent the night in a & e) but my previously very loving mother genuinely did not care. At all.

Since then, her and my dad have split up. Being so badly treated when I was pregnant has made it very hard for me to acknowledge in RL that I want another baby.

I was told, everyday until I was thrown out, what a stupid slaggy idiot I was, and it would be my fault if the baby died of poverty related illness for not getting pregnant by a rich man, and she hoped I knew I would be doing it all alone, as she wouldn't help and (still dp) would be looooooonnnnng gone!

Bizarre thing is, she told me six months ago how proud she was of me and my son!

My roundabout point is, she may flip back to how she used to be. My mother has done. I have had no unreasonable behavior off her since dad left her.

Surreal Mon 04-Jul-05 12:59:47

OMG - yes she does sound exactly like my mother colditz. She has "flipped" before -after an accident when she broke her hip (I was sitting my A levels at the time and she was horrid to me)

I know she resents me for having my children at a young age. I just can't cope with the blowing hot and cold.

Dh says I must just accept that she is very unreasonable now but how do I handle her attacks on me?

NotQuiteCockney Mon 04-Jul-05 13:17:22

I deal with unwelcome behaviour from parents sort-of the same way I deal with unwelcome behaviour from kids. I ignore it, and withdraw attention.

So, I'd end any strange conversations, and avoid her when she's being that way. Reward her with attention when she's good, go away, or hang up the phone when she's bad. Don't argue. Say "I see" or "I'm sorry you feel that way", and get out of the conversation as soon as possible.

Hopefully this will discourage her, and it will at least reduce the unpleasantness for you.

Surreal Mon 04-Jul-05 17:52:32

Thanks for your advice - I think that is good advice NQC. Trying to discuss things reasonably is like banging my head against a brick wall.

I just feel miserable about the fact things have changed and she is trying to make me feel badly about myself.

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