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To find my Mother impossible to deal with?

9 replies

faymous · 08/04/2011 10:09

I'm new to this MN. But thought some unbiased opinions may help.
I do not get a long with my Mother. I had a miserable childhood. My Father was an alcoholic. My mother was happy to send me off to say with him (they divorced when I was 6). In her words "you would have been angry if I intervened". I'd cry because he wouldn't turn up or I'd be frightened at his house because he was really drunk and being agressive. At home I spent all my time arguing with my Mother. She's very opinated, and emotionally detached (unless shouting at you).

Fast forward 30 odd years. My Dad has been dead three years. Im walking at egg shells around my Mother. For example, we take in a third reuse cat. I finally tell my Mother, because she is coming for Christmas. She starts shouting down the phone "why have you got another?" "tell me you will never get another one" me in irate voice "no, I will be not getting another one". Fast forward to Christmas. It was awful. My husband said "she ruined Xmas, I wish I hadn't invited her". Anyway, three months later she has told my Aunt. She has had enough. She said she felt uncomfortable at Christmas. She said she wants nothing to do with me (and her grandson) because I didnt reply to her New Year text(I didnt reply to anyone). Secondly because I said to her "stop drying up. When I go to other peoples houses I don't put away their washing". After she carried on I walked away". She said "I'd been really cruel". I've called her since, but she hasn't replied. She sent me a £10 present on my Bday, and she got my sons Bday wrong. How do I deal with her?

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Honeybee79 · 08/04/2011 10:20

It does sound like she's been unpleasant to you. Sorry to hear you had a rubbish time when you were younger - to be honest, whilst I'm all in favour of kids having contact with both parents (even if a parent is struggling) all that goes out the window if the child is being put at risk. You shouldn't have been exposed to your father's behaviour like that.

I think you need to sit down and have an honest chat with your mum and tell her how upset you've been. Can you do that? It seems drastic to cut of all contact.


FaultyGoods · 08/04/2011 10:24

Do you want to have contact with her?


faymous · 08/04/2011 12:07

Thanks for your replies.

@FaultyGoods - that's a good question. I feel mixed emotions. When my Dad died I struggled. I felt guilty that I had ceased contact with him four years earlier. On the other hand it brought up alot of things I'd tried to forget. It was a really tough time. My son was only 3 months old when he died (he was found five days after dying. His liver went. He was 56). If my Mum died Im not sure how I'd deal with it. I guess I'm staying in contact so I don't feel that guilt again.

@Honeybee79 - I know your right. I need to talk to her. It's hard. She told my Aunt that we'd fallen out over " small issues". Yet on the other hand she wants nothing to do with me, and she said to me I'd been " absolutely awful to her at Xmas". I've tried to talk to her in past. I said "I think my Dads behaviour affected my Alevel results". He'd been ringing me constantly (drunk) whilst I was studying. I said he needed to get help. He said "I don't know why your hovering, your just thick anyway". So when I brought this up years later with my Mum her response was " it's not like you were academic anyway". My husband was in the room and he was gap smacked.

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FaultyGoods · 08/04/2011 22:06

Sorry for not coming back sooner, didn't mean to leave you hanging. I understand the guilt issue, I have similar with my mother. I don't like her very much but feel I should keep contact.

I think you need to decide what you are willing to put up with to minimise your feelings of guilt. If you don't feel able to cut contact completely, can you try and do the minimum you need to do? Limit the time you are together and for what purpose. By that I mean, duty visit/phone call for half hour once a week but don't invite her to your home or further into your life, particularly not for 'special occasions' like Christmas. I don't know if that will help but it might minimise the feelings of guilt.


faymous · 10/04/2011 20:31

Sorry, been busy decorating and gardening !! Thanks FaultyGoods. Sounds like you have found a good way of dealing with your Mother.since my DS has been born (he's three). I've distanced myself abit mire. The first tear was easy as we had no money (she lives nearly three hours away), so it was an excuse not to drive up there!! For my DS first Xmas, I requested it just be the three of us. She seemed ok about, but as since complained about!!! My husband and I never spent a Xmas together (been together ten years) because my Mum us in her own (most Xmass shed cone to me, and I'd cook - it was easier as we struggle to find someone to feed the cats). My husband would go to his parents. Last year I assumed she would be coming here. When I mentioned it to her, she said she had booked a holiday instead. She rang on Xmas Day and was really funny. She just makes me feel so shite what ever I do :-(.

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FaultyGoods · 11/04/2011 10:54

Yes, Mums can be good at making you feel crap. I often feel like I'm being cold-hearted and I should do more, but I think that's the guilt trying to catch me out. Most of the time, we are running here, there and everywhere after various members of our extended families and I have come to think that enough is enough.

It's horrible that you, your DH and DS are not able to spend Christmas as a family. Perhaps make a point of saying (as early in the year as you can) that this Christmas is going to be just the three of you. She can't say she didn't have time to make alternative arrangements then (and you can claim you assumed she would be going on holiday again). Doesn't mean she won't gripe about it, but I suppose you have to 'toughen up' your defences knowing that is what will happen. I hope you can work out a way to have a relationship with your Mum that you are happy with.


whitevanwoman · 11/04/2011 11:05

pick your battles, drying up is a non-issue


faymous · 11/04/2011 16:07

@whitevanwoman - Can you clarify, are you saying I'm at fault fir my Mum not speaking to me ?

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faymous · 11/04/2011 16:18

@ FaultyGoods -thanks for you comments. Your right. I need to 'toughen up'. At the moment I'm quite glad she isn't talking to me. I appreciate what you've said.

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