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what do you do with a mother you can't stand? - Page 2

post #16 of 34
My mom was like that a lot during my growing up. In and out of depression, very negatively critical of everything, and at times down right meaninglessly insulting. It was all very subtle, and yet had a very strong impact where self esteem lies.

The biggest problem with a person like that being your mother is society tells you to respect and listen to her, even if she is full of it. That aspect of it was troubling during my teenage years, and only now in college am I slowly getting out of the negative habits I learned from her. Still gotta break the inability to drive a car I learned from her.

Time heals a lot of wounds, as will developing understanding of yourself, as well as understanding of the person who is causing the problems.

Not entirely sure where that was going, but perhaps it gets on the "I can't stand my mother either" wagon.
post #17 of 34
Yes you never stop owing your mother, especially if she has fought for your right to go to private schools, university etc etc etc.
post #18 of 34
My mother has repeatedly brought abusers of all kinds into mine and my sister's lives. Physical, emotional, verbal, drug, sexual, alcohol, power, you name it. She's married it, lived with it, or brought it home with her. She has had me committed, arrested, psychoanalyzed, and evicted. She's put bruises, cuts, and scars on me. She'd told lies about me to everyone she knows, including our family, and will lie to my face about things that I already know. She thinks she's a religious woman, and constantly "prays" for me, because I live in a "big city" and am probably going to hell along with all the other "sinners". Even though she's lived in cities for most of her adult life and just moved back to her small hometown 10 years ago. I don't feel like I owe my mother anything. She didn't school me, in fact she pulled me out of school in fifth grade and I didn't go back until Sophomore year of High School. (long after I moved out of the house) I was supposedly homeschooled, but she never taught me anything. She would work all day and I would take care of my sister. I got a job when I was 12 bussing tables at night at a chinese restaraunt in Albuquerque, getting paid in free food, tips, and minimum wage under the table. (I think it was $3.75 an hour or something at the time) Our fights were epic and destructive. She decided that she wanted me out of her house when I was 13, so she told the police that I was beating her and my sister, that I was in a gang, and that I was a drug addict. I spent 3 months in juvenile detention and a year and a half in a "hospital" for my "drug rehab", and "rage issues". And believe it or not, that is where I first did drugs. Somewhat ironically, Its easier to get high in rehab than it is almost anywhere else in the world, as long as you aren't picky. I got out of there, after they figured out that there wasn't anything wrong with me other than the fact that all the adults in my life were trying to ensure that I ended up dead or behind bars, and I had grown accustomed to living with pathological liars. I left there when I was 14 and never went back home. I feel sorry for my sister, who is ten years younger than I am and still lives with her. She hasn't changed much. I visit one day every three or four years, I don't tell her I'm coming, and I stay less than 8 hours total. I don't call, I don't write, I don't send presents. I had to explain it to my sister a couple months ago, and she understands why. I'd like to think that I'm relatively well adjusted, all things considered. I mean, I haven't killed anyone, I quit doing all the drugs that I started doing while in rehab, and I haven't knocked any girls up. I'd consider myself a success.
post #19 of 34
I was about to say that you guys have it quite different compared to how it is here in Asia. I don't know where we got the idea: Confucius, Buddhism, Taoism, Catholicism... but whatever it is, people here are expected to take care of their parents until they pass on. They never question this rule, and they never question, at least aloud, their parents. Its this belief that they brought you in this world, and raised you and you owe them this. In fact, if leaving parents in hospices or retirement homes is a pariah here. I have differences with my folks that really really drives me up the wall, and yet I still end up civil with them because doing otherwise makes me think I'm some ingrate. Of course it is difficult, and I do keep my distance as much as I can, but in the end- they are still my folks and cutting them off or whatever doesn't change that fact. But I may have to rethink this rule. Slim's story sure makes you stop and think. Slim, I hope this issue finds some closure for you and most specially your sister. I have a sibling whose also stuck with my folks and I hate to think she might end up like them in a negative way, and that is a pittance compared to your situation. Good luck!
post #20 of 34
Thread Starter 
Ouch TS. If this is a competition, you win. Mine wasn't a bad mother growing up, but she's gotten worse with age and she's very bitter about the stuff that happened with my father and can't move past that, despite constant therapy and prescription drugs. Nothing has changed since 2002. Meanwhile, she's running the risk of pissing-away what little she has left and alienating herself from family.
post #21 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by acidicboy
I was about to say that you guys have it quite different compared to how it is here in Asia. I don't know where we got the idea: Confucius, Buddhism, Taoism, Catholicism... but whatever it is, people here are expected to take care of their parents until they pass on.

My take on that is that I didn't ask them to make me, but once they had me, they had little choice but to raise me. I don't particularly want kids, but if a condom breaks and I luck-out and my girl got pregnant and refused an abortion, I'd raise them properly.

In the same vein, it was their choice to have a kid. They wanted it and knew what it entailed. Consequently, I don't owe them just for having me. There are things that go above and beyond the simple raising of a child that I do feel that I owe them for, however it's difficult for me to equate a value to them.
post #22 of 34
Damn thats a rough situation man. She sounds more dysthymic than depressed, the latter being a more longstanding, tolerable depression that can endure for many many years. Mental illness can explain why some people are the way they are but it doesnt make it any easier for the people who love them to deal with them. While some people need to be in "long term" therapy I find that more often than not they're getting nothing accomplished. It never ceases to amaze me when I see a new patient who spent 5-10 yrs with another therapist but is no better off then when they started.

My advice, if you would like to maintain some relationship with your mother is to have a family session with her and anyone else in the family who would like to attend and get some of this stuff out in the open. You'd be surprised how much better youd feel getting some of this stuff off your chest. If anything a couple sessions with someone experienced could provide you with some particular skills in dealing with her as well as give you some insight into her belief's.

I don't know how old you or your mother are but this is probably someting youd be better off doing sooner than later. If you like I may be able to make some recommendations on places that specialize in family therapy in major areas. Good luck.

MrR
post #23 of 34
my mother is awesome. This thread is making me kinda appreciate that at the moment.
post #24 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by GQgeek
My take on that is that I didn't ask them to make me, but once they had me, they had little choice but to raise me. I don't particularly want kids, but if a condom breaks and I luck-out and my girl got pregnant and refused an abortion, I'd raise them properly.

In the same vein, it was their choice to have a kid. They wanted it and knew what it entailed. Consequently, I don't owe them just for having me. There are things that go above and beyond the simple raising of a child that I do feel that I owe them for, however it's difficult for me to equate a value to them.

I agree with this view. I find the "they raised you" argument to be sort of silly. Of course they raised you, but think of the alternative - going to jail for child neglect/endangerment.
post #25 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by m@T
my mother is awesome. This thread is making me kinda appreciate that at the moment.
+1 on that one - my mom, that is. Don't want to insinuate anything about m@T's mom. That said, things turned for the better perhaps a year ago when I got tired of the verbal provocation I received and started flinging it back at her. Instead of leaving, I started standing my ground and things changed all around. I respect and love my parents, but when they start poking, I swing back - hard.
post #26 of 34
There is a big difference between loving (and/or respecting) your mother and enabling destructive behavior. I feel badly (sorry for sounding trite) for GQ, Slim and others here who've had sh*tty relationships with their mothers. My own mother was, in retrospect, truly a saint who put up with a high-functioning alcoholic, bullying spouse, but managed to teach my sister and I the importance of love, respect and gratitude. I miss her terribly. I think for one's own mental health, one needs to love mother. But certainly no one should put up with, condone or enable the destructive behavior noted in earlier posts.
post #27 of 34
hmmmm hard situation, I feel for you, GQ.

my mom was a pretty great mom. she tried really hard, and it wasn't easy. in her old age, she has gotten to be a pain in the ass, though. she antaganizes pretty much every body. I talk to her almost every day, and when I do, I simple talk a bit, and then I do something else while she tells me her problems and I mumble "oh yes" or "hmmm" every now and again. it has worked well for 10 years.

if you don't give your mom some emotional support and love before she dies, it will fuck you up for ever. you don't want to be in that position.

and, as was said before - you owe your parents for ever. such is life, such it up.
post #28 of 34
Ah, my dear friend GT puts my thoughts in words so much better than I am able. This is what I tried to say

Quote:
Originally Posted by globetrotter
if you don't give your mom some emotional support and love before she dies, it will fuck you up for ever. you don't want to be in that position.

and, as was said before - you owe your parents for ever. such is life, such it up.
post #29 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by raley
I agree with this view. I find the "they raised you" argument to be sort of silly. Of course they raised you, but think of the alternative - going to jail for child neglect/endangerment.


I could only speak for myself. Yes, there is no choice for parents but to "raise" you. But then again, when me and my siblings were kids, our family wasn't well-off. But still they sacrificed a lot to feed us and send us to very good schools and all that. They never complained nor asked for anything back. They could have scrimped on spending on us and we'll still live, but they always took more than what is needed when it comes to their kids. Of course when you grow and mature, you do not see your folks the same way as you did when you were kids. I think that is where the problem lies. It is hard to realize that your folks weren't the perfect Ozzie & Harriet Nelson we dream our parents to be, and realizing that they're also fucked up like the rest of us, now that's hard.
post #30 of 34
Quote:
I guess my question is at what point do you stop owing your parents?

You never do in the first place. Having a kid is her responsibility. To think of it as some sort of debt is demeaning to you, her, and your relationship.
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