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Mother being Mean

(25 Posts)
Oxfordblue Wed 01-Nov-17 18:58:15

This has been grumbling on for about a week now & still niggling,so here goes.

Went to visit my mum last week, she is almost 74, I’m almost 49.
She is starting to look stooped & crumpled. In a very kind voice, I asked if she’d thought about going to yoga or Pilates (she walks very slowly, is quite overweight & currently on a diet) to help with her muscle strength. She already bone problems & takes calcium for this. Her response was flashing angry eyes & a NO, so I said well just sit up straight & that will help strengthen your muscles etc etc. She then went in to say “I think I look all right for my age”, that her Health is good (at the first cold air she always gets sinusitis/chest infection & downs the antibiotics. So ok, fair enough, my suggestion wasn’t wanted grin
But then she proceeded to tell me that there is always something wrong with me, (periods/Menopause & need an injection for a shoulder issue + piles 11 years ago) & that her friend X saw a photo of me of FB & said how gaunt & haggard I looked (confused) .

I was quite taken aback by the ferocity of her wrath (for something said with best intentions) so went quiet, went out, came back, then went out for the rest of the afternoon & then went back home - she lives 1.5 hrs away from me. All the time spent with her was, well quite unpleasant.
I feel I need to say something like, that’s not how it works mum, you shouldn’t be repeating what your friend says about me & attack isn’t the best form of defence, especially as there really was no malice from me.
We have a history of clashing, she is very opinionated, very forthright & ‘tells it as it is’ & also feels that she should say what she thinks, but no-one else dare.
She’s supposed to be coming up for a few days in a couple of weeks, but I’m not feeling it...
Gawd thats long...blush

wheresthel1ght Wed 01-Nov-17 19:12:11

I think you were both out of order.

Frankly I would be apologising to her for upsetting her and then move on.

Oxfordblue Wed 01-Nov-17 19:17:47

What did I say that was out of order?

wheresthel1ght Wed 01-Nov-17 20:49:55

You are picking at her about her weight etc and then have an issue when she does the same in return.
She is 74 she is more than capable of making her own choices.

Intended or not your were rude and judgemental of her and then didn't like that being returned.

I think you both owe each other an apology

CauliflowerSqueeze Wed 01-Nov-17 20:55:29

She knows she looks crap and that her health isn’t good. She attacked how you look to divert away. You might have been offended but honestly in her mid 70s she knows time isn’t really on her side and health wise things could take a nose dive quite quickly.

pieceofpurplesky Wed 01-Nov-17 21:02:11

My mum is 76 and has ‘bone problems’ aka osteoporosis. She is stopped because she is incredible pain most of the time. Suggesting Pilates or yoga when she struggles to stand straight would be something I would never do as it would be cruel and draw more attention to the fact her body is letting her down. My mum is overweight because she cannot exercise and is on a high calcium diet which doesn’t help.
You are lucky she didn’t kick you out and tell you to fuck off with your patronising ideas. Maybe look in the mirror and see if she has a point - if your main concern for your Mum is she is overweight it signifies you have an issue (especially if ‘gaunt’ and ill looking)

pieceofpurplesky Wed 01-Nov-17 21:02:36


Rudgie47 Wed 01-Nov-17 21:16:11

She would probably struggle to do Pilates and Yoga if shes as bad as you make out. She wouldnt be able to get up from the floor, so that would be really embarassing for her.
Basically she knows shes getting older and is facing ill health and you might as well have suggested running a marathon. I think you were out of order really.

Moussemoose Wed 01-Nov-17 21:25:15

Yoga is brilliant for all ages! Exercise is good for you at virtually all stages of life!

OP didn't say she looked ill she said it might help with muscle strength. She's right, it might!

When did making a perfectly reasonable suggestion become rude?

drspouse Wed 01-Nov-17 21:51:36

My Pilates teacher takes people who have quite severe posture problems (I assume also osteoporosis).

Mum2jenny Wed 01-Nov-17 21:57:02

At 74 your mum may have 20+ years left so it would be in her best interests to get a bit fitter/ flexible, but it is her choice.

She possibly attacked you in self defence, and she may be aware of what she should do (but doesn't want to)

Oxfordblue Wed 01-Nov-17 21:57:43

Thanks for understand what I'm getting at Mousseemoose!

I never told her she was overweight - the fact she's carrying at least 3st, it's obvious & she's joined WeightWatchers. (Because she's miserable being fat , nothing fitting her & no clothes looking nice on her - again all her own words.) Not that she's actually following it - she's 'doing her own thing', just likes to pay for the weighing.

She can sit straight too - she just doesn't bother, this isn't some frail bird-like, hard done woman here!

My point, which has been pretty much missed here, is it acceptable to berate someone & dreg up insults said by her friend? Whether I look haggard or not (thanks to the poster who suggested I look in the mirror 😂) has nothing to do with her posture.

10 mins later she told me to get my 'hoofs off the sofa' & battered them off with her hand. (Hoofs not hooves btw)

Oxfordblue Wed 01-Nov-17 21:58:49

Mum2jenny yes absolutely, I was asking if she had considered going, not <<you should go>>.

Skittlesandbeer Wed 01-Nov-17 22:05:36

I think although your intentions may have been sound, your comments were insensitive and likely to provoke a defensive response. If you want to help her health and fitness, you’d need to quietly research possible avenues for seniors exercise (not as easy as just joining the nearest yoga class). You’d have to figure out transport, how to pay, and be prepared to take the (long) time of gently persuading her and clearing the obstacles between her and the goal (talking to her GP would be a start).

You seem to think it was likely she’d leap up with shining eyes and thank you for your insight and love, run to the nearest class and change her xmas list from chocs to Lycra gear. It was never going to happen.

Pointing out someone’s physical and mental challenges, and how they deviate from the ideal is never helpful. You have to do a wee bit more than Blind Freddy if you want to be considered helpful.

Slightlyperturbedowlagain Wed 01-Nov-17 22:12:55

Remembering from my Grandma who had a stoop due to spine degeneration she may well be in a substantial amount of background pain, which will make her intolerant.

Skittlesandbeer Wed 01-Nov-17 22:13:59

To respond to your feeling of insult from her...

I’d say if you pile up the firewood, douse it with kerosene and light a match then you don’t get to complain if you get scorched.

Also, you presumably can get on with your day. Get support from other people, treat yourself to an outing, distract yourself with work/kids, generally use your good health and networks to ‘recover’ from what she said.

She sounds like someone who missed out on a pleasant social interaction because of your insensitivity, and will now sit isolated and in pain to contemplate her inabilities.

You got back as good as you gave, only you’ve got more options for getting over it for mine.

DancesWithOtters Wed 01-Nov-17 22:31:11

You were a bit insensitive/patronising. She's an adult, no spring chicken. She knows what she looks like.

She was offended and was rude back.

Shrug. Lesson learned.

Moussemoose Wed 01-Nov-17 22:33:20

"Oh have you tried yoga?"

This is conversation not an insult!

Good grief people. Do you lot really get offended by someone saying "have you tried yoga". Really? Someone I work with loves yoga, I hear this 10 times a day. No one is insulted.

She is 74. She is not some ancient old crone! It is very insulting to suggest because she is older she needs to be treated differently.

You are all massively over sensitive and previous if you think " have you tried yoga?" Is an insult.

DancesWithOtters Wed 01-Nov-17 22:36:59

so I said well just sit up straight & that will help strengthen your muscles etc

Not patronising?

Moussemoose Wed 01-Nov-17 22:38:30

Actually now I know what a vile insult "have you tried yoga?" is I'm going to use it.

Oh yes I am going to be insensitive and patronising I will point out people's limitations by saying "have you tried yoga?". I might even say it to my boss!

I'll come back tomorrow and report back. I might get sacked!

Oh I was going to call someone a " useless tosser " but now I will just ask "have you tried yoga?" That will really show them.


DancesWithOtters Wed 01-Nov-17 22:38:55

(I go to yoga classes 3x a week, and I think the above is patronising. She's not a naughty child slumping on purpose.)

Oxfordblue Wed 01-Nov-17 22:55:44

Skittlesandbeer et al, she’s not in pain. She’s a cantankerous, bitter & narcissistic woman. Oh yes & entitled. Her word is law.
She’s not sitting, slumping nor weeping lonely over her fear.

She’ll be out showing off with her friends, who not surprising change because she’s so opinionated & forthright.
She drives an open top sports car & Holidays Several times a year.

Yes, I get that suggesting a yoga class might appear to unkind, but that wasn’t my intention. Just for the record, I’ve only just managed to stop her calling blacks, coloureds, people that wear lots of rings ‘common’ & gay people as queer.

stayathomegardener Wed 01-Nov-17 23:20:51

Look you clearly don't like your mum, probably not unreasonably.
It really doesn't matter who was rude or started it you rub each other up the wrong way.
Take it from one who knows, don't offer any suggestions in future, inane small talk is your friend.

Oh and really I'd cancel her impending visit, it won't be fun.

GreenFingersWouldBeHandy Thu 02-Nov-17 15:53:56

Um... the way you talk about her suggests you don't actually like her very much. Which is fine I guess, we can't choose who we're related to. Just wondering why you've invited her to stay with you in the first place.

Oxfordblue Thu 02-Nov-17 17:04:24

I would like to get on with her sad
She invited herself, i will cancel
It though because something always happens (she looks down on me) & we have an argument.
Big shame.

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