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Old 09-13-2006, 12:48 PM   #1
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Don't know how to deal with my mother anymore.

What is the best way to deal with someone who acts completely against all logic and reason? I'm sorry this is so long, but there's a lot of history involved in this to get a true picture of the issues I've been dealing with.

For years, my mother has been the type of person that, when things don't go her way, she has to act out. Sometimes she isolates herself from everyone, or just the person who's "done her wrong," sometimes she screams and yells and carries on for hours and hours, never acknowledging that there was good reason for whatever happened, or that it really doesn't involve her, or that it's just a difference in opinion. But it is impossible to talk sense into her, ever. And she has never uttered the words "I'm sorry", despite many hurtful things said. But at other times claims "we don't know what it's like to be yelled at." It's like she doesn't even remember the things she says or the way she acted after it's all done.


When my brother and I were younger, it was little things that got her--bringing home a poor grade on a test always resulted in yelling and screaming. We wouldn't be allowed to go on field trips or to friend's houses, because she'd insist that it was "too dangerous" or that the people weren't the type of people we should be spending time with. As we got older, it was not allowing us to go to school dances, or to the mall with friends, get our permits, get rides to/from school with other people. Every time we tried to talk some sense into her, she would flip out and not want to hear it. And we were good kids, who hung out with other good kids, so it was just not justified.

While we were in college, a whole new set of problems would arise around us not calling home enough, not coming home on the weekends. A couple of times, my choir went on trips, one to Montreal and one to Ireland, and my mother screamed and flipped out and refused to talk to me for weeks because I went on these trips that she considered dangerous.
Now, I'm living at home for a few months, my fiance and I are getting married next year and are looking for a place to live. My brother is home from college now too. Her behavior continues. My brother has a girlfriend that my mother has decided she absolutely hates. They've been together for 2 years, so it's not like it's something new. She does everything in her power to prevent him from seeing her. She's not allowed in our house. My parents bought him a car for a graduation present. They say that since technically it's in their name, he's not allowed to drive it to see her. It has caused more fights than you can imagine. My brother has pleaded with her to put aside her feelings, since she makes him happy, but she says that she KNOWS that she's not right for him, and that she refuses to sit back and let him "throw his life away on her." And now, lately, since I've been giving my bro rides to her house and such, I've been labeled as "his enabler" and "helping him to his demise."

It's such a tough situation dealing with her, because a lot of the time she's a very nice, caring person. She obviously loves us very much. If we were to go along with everything she says, things would always be that way. But as soon as someone does something that she disagrees with, that's the end of the niceness. It's like she always has to be the one in control. As we've gotten older and are in control of our own lives now, she is less and less happy with us. She wants us to live with her as long as she can keep us here. In fact, I know that if my fiance and I move in together before our wedding, it will cause world war 3. Yet she is always disapproving of the choices we make.

The ironic part of it all is that she constantly tells us about how her mother had "mental problems," as she puts it. That if things were out of place in the house, she would "flip out." That she never wanted my mother to move out of her house. That she didnt' like my father while they were dating, and wouldn't let them spend time together in the house. That she used to get mad at my mother, her brothers/sisters, and my grandfather if they spent time with someone she didnt' like. Which, according to my mother, she didn't like many people, including her mother in law, sisters-in-law, aunts, uncles, etc. The very things she's been telling us she went through with her mother, SHE DOES THEM TOO! It could be that one minute she tells some story about something my grandmother used to do, and an hour later, she does the same thing.

I just don't even know what to do anymore. My bro and I only dispute her when it's absolutely necessary, the rest of the time we just let it go. But the problems are getting bigger. I just don't even know what the best way to deal with her is. Right now, she has refused to speak to or be in the same room as my brother and I since last Friday, when he told her that he was going to spend the weekend w/ his gf, and I drove him there and picked him up. I don't know how to end it. I have nothing to apologize for. I don't believe I did anything wrong. I don't particularly like my bro's gf, but it's not my place to decide if she's right for him or not, and preventing him from seeing her isnt' going to miraculously make him "see the light." Only he can decide for himself.

I'm a very logical and reasonable person. It drives me completely insane that I can't deal with her this way, because she refuses to see anyone else's point of view, even when it is based in facts. Does anybody know what the best way is to deal with someone like this?

 
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Old 09-13-2006, 01:29 PM   #2
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Re: Don't know how to deal with my mother anymore.

Move out and keep her on a need to know basis before and after you do. She sounds alot like my mother. I love my mom, but she doesn't need to know every detail of my life nor does she. I let her know what I think she needs to and if it is something I think she is going to flip about I limit contact for awhile after I tell her. You are never going to get her to see your side as she could never get her mother to see her side.

Good Luck

 
Old 09-13-2006, 01:44 PM   #3
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whackedback HB Userwhackedback HB Userwhackedback HB User
Re: Don't know how to deal with my mother anymore.

Search on the string "Borderline Personality Disorder" and see if it fits. It sounds like it does.

wb

 
Old 09-13-2006, 02:17 PM   #4
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Re: Don't know how to deal with my mother anymore.

I know that things will change when I move out, and keeping her on a "need to know" basis is how I got through college.

I'm worried about later on. She can't wait until I have kids. And she is wonderful with children, she'll be a terrific grandmother. But I'm worried about how she will disapprove of how I raise them. I'm worried that she will say/do things to even turn them against me, or make it seem like she could do a better job raising them. She has a manipulative way about her that is like nothing I've ever seen. She can insult somebody with a big smile on her face and treat it like the funniest joke ever. I want their grandmother to be part of their life. My fiance's mother passed away so she is the only grandmother they'll have. I don't ever want it to come to a point where I have to stop having her over or stop bringing them over to her house because she's telling me how I should raise them, what I'm doing wrong, what's wrong with my house, job, etc. Moving out will be the quick fix right now, but I know I need to figure out how to deal with her better for the future as well.

 
Old 09-14-2006, 12:04 PM   #5
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Re: Don't know how to deal with my mother anymore.

I hear you. My Mother is rather scaringly similiar! She has said and done terrible things and never said she is sorry. We suspect she has mental rpoblems but she will neer admit it. When we needed couseling she went off the deep end and told us we were crazy. She is excelent at making you feel like you have done her wrong even when she is the one who picked the fight, instgated the fight or stuck her nose where it didn't belong. She has a negative comment for everyone once their back is turned but can be sweet as pie to your face! She freaks out over the smallest things and makes them into a big deal managing to draw pitty from whomever will listen to her sob stories. She makes everything to be about her. Even if it's something like my pregancy. If she doesn't have a front row seat at the labor she will start a family war, she already did it when my sister had her child and she missed it! She won't g to counseling, she won't leave me alone and she won' even admit she has a problem. My way of dealing with it was realizing yes she is my Mother but I have let her use that as a barganing chip for too long now. There is no law that says because she is my Mother she can treate me like crap! Think of it this way..If your Mother was physically abusing you is she allowed because she is your Mother? Do you think I can't tell her it's wrong because she is my Mother? My guess is no. So why let her abuse you this way, which yes it is abuse it's called mental! You may have thought it wasn't because their was no actuall visual bruises but it doesn't mean they are not there.

 
Old 09-14-2006, 12:25 PM   #6
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Re: Don't know how to deal with my mother anymore.

My mother is very similar. I was never allowed to spend the night with friends or have any kind of social life as a teenager because my mother was/is sooo paranoid and way over protective. I have two children of my own now (I am 26) and she sometimes favors my daughter more than my son which makes me really mad. She tried to control everything I do. If I am going out of town and I ask her if she would keep even ONE of my children on like a Saturday and Sunday, she has to know where I am going, who I am going to be with, etc etc.

In fact, I am going to Maryland this weekend, and I asked her if she would watch my son so I could go. I also told her that if she didnt want to, I would just take him with me. (Which is fine) But she asked me when I was leaving and I said Friday after work, which would put me in MD between midnight and 1am. She said she didnt want me going through DC at night by myself. So BECAUSE of that, she probably wont watch him.

Its almost a "you do it how I say and when I say or you wont go" type deal. Which doesnt fly right with me. I go anyway. Son or not.

I understand your frustration, believe me I do. My mother is very controlling and doesnt see it. Imagine that. Even immediate family knows and speaks aloud about this.

 
Old 09-14-2006, 10:17 PM   #7
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Re: Don't know how to deal with my mother anymore.

I am new to the boards and registered in order with the intent to post a thread about my mother. However, after reading your post, I felt that I needed to reply to you.

I have a similar relationship with my mother, or lack thereof, which has brought me an immense amount of guilt and misery over the years. From my experience, advice in the some of the other boards is usually to try talking, limit your relationship, or terminate the relationship completely. If you feel the way that I do, none of those ideas, however rational to the outside world, seem feesible. Add to that other family members to take into consideration and you've doubled, or even trippled your stress. You must feel stuck between a rock and a hard place. I just wanted to let you know that I understand.

I wish that I had an the perfect answer for you. I do suggest professional therapy, not necessarily for you and your mother but for you alone to work through the issues that a lifetime of dealing with this has caused. If you wanted to try mother/daughter therapy later on that would be fine, but now is the time to focus on you.

Last edited by moderator2; 09-15-2006 at 06:00 AM. Reason: posted contact info

 
Old 09-15-2006, 07:56 AM   #8
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Re: Don't know how to deal with my mother anymore.

Redsoxgirl, I can't believe how you came out of this family with a mother like this so normal! It sounds like you have handled everything marvelously! You and your brother do what you need to do regardless of what she does, BRAVO! It sounds like you don't have a mental or emotional problem one bit!!! You should bottle up whatever you have done and sell it and make a fortune. As for the future, I have total confidence that you can handle whatever comes your way. You are right, she will probably cause trouble, which is a huge inconvenience for you, but what can you do? What about yourself or your life do you think got you through all of this so intact? Keep up the good work!

 
Old 09-15-2006, 08:08 AM   #9
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Re: Don't know how to deal with my mother anymore.

thank you all so much for replying.

I live in fear every day , if it is in fact some kind of personality disorder that has affected my mother and my grandmother (my mother's sister also had a lot of problems, and has passed away from alcohol-related illness), that it will someday affect me. I never want to treat my family members the way she does, I never want my children to fear me the way we do her.

 
Old 09-15-2006, 01:40 PM   #10
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Re: Don't know how to deal with my mother anymore.

You will never be like your mother. If you were going to have a personality disorder you would have it by now. You can work on not being afraid of her anymore. You are an adult now and you can start to seperate from those fears that you had as a child. I would never have a conversation again with her about her behavior. You have said it all already. I wouldn't have any crazy conversations with her anymore. You'll never change her.

 
Old 09-15-2006, 01:41 PM   #11
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Re: Don't know how to deal with my mother anymore.

You will never be like your mother. If you were going to have a personality disorder you would have it by now. You can work on not being afraid of her anymore. You are an adult now and you can start to seperate from those fears that you had as a child. I would never have a conversation again with her about her behavior. You have said it all already. I wouldn't have any "crazy" conversations with her anymore. You'll never change her.

Last edited by thegardener; 09-15-2006 at 01:42 PM.

 
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