or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Talk Amongst Ourselves › Personal Growth › support thread for mamas with toxic and/or estranged parents
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

support thread for mamas with toxic and/or estranged parents - Page 12

post #221 of 402
Quote:
Originally Posted by aniT View Post
I would like to get to that point. But we moved to another state and she followed us and now she has my oldest daughter living there and wrapped around her finger. Without giving upon DD I don't know how to distance myself from her.

And I resent her and hate her more every single day cause she would rather have her pride than just apologize for once in her freaking life.
See, this is just one more reason why I don't want my kids knowing their grandmother. As hard as it is, I fear that once they are out of my care, if I allow her into their lives, she will find a way to manipulate and hurt them, too.

Everytime I question whether I should just suck it up and talk to my mom, I remember that i'm doing this not just for myself, but for my children.
post #222 of 402
Quote:
Originally Posted by A&A View Post
Question for everyone--how do you get beyond missing your parents, or at least who you wanted them to be?

And how do you get over the guilt of cutting them off, or just plain letting them go?
Honestly, I have to keep asking myself and getting affirmation from others to assure me I'm doing the right thing. But, i don't feel any guilt. And I don't miss my mom. Once I realized my mom won't change on her own, and I can't change her...that really released me. I feel like I am finally free to be my own person, take care of MY family, and pursue my own interests. That's why even when I question myself...it doesn't last long. My problem now, is regaining communication with the rest of the family and having to justify myself to them...
post #223 of 402
So here's a question to go along with my previous post. I've been kind of isolated for the last year because of personal circumstances AND the situation with my toxic mother. I've deliberately cut of communication with my mom, but not with the rest of my family...at least not on person. My brother kicked me off of our family website - the only way I ever really communicated with aunts/uncles/cousins, etc. On my dad's side, there aren't bad feelings (i don't think) i just haven't explained ot them why i've been distant and I want them to know what's going on with me. So the question i have is...do i continue to protect my mom by keeping the horrible things she's done a secret. Or do I tell them the truth (not necessarily all of it - i don't want to hurt her on purpose) so that they can understand fully what I'm dealing with? I've only actually told about 5 people that my mom was physically abusive. It's a hard thing to say out loud. But, I feel like that's the only way people will really understand why i don't want to talk to her and why i don't want her near my daughter. I'm kind of afraid of the ramifications of telling her side...what will her brother do if I tell him why I'm not talking to her. Will he believe me, tell her what I said...I can't see any of her family actually trying to intervene in a positive way. This is tough...
post #224 of 402
Quote:
Originally Posted by flower01 View Post
I'm kind of afraid of the ramifications of telling her side...what will her brother do if I tell him why I'm not talking to her. Will he believe me, tell her what I said...I can't see any of her family actually trying to intervene in a positive way. This is tough...
I think you answered your own question here... if you don't see anything positive coming out of it, why do it? It'll just cause a lot of head/heartache for yourself.

My DH wound up in that position years ago - the entire family wound up taking his mother's side. He had to accept that he was never going to convince them of the things she had done. It hurt to lose the rest of the family over it, but it came down to an all or nothing proposition. Ultimately his brother came around and admitted that he saw what was going on and apologized for the role he played in it - and they now have a tentative relationship.

A short little update on us - somehow my father found out I'm pregnant. I have my suspicions on who told him, but I can't prove it, of course. I spent about a week being seriously uptight about it, but now I'm back to where I was... he's made no effort to contact me (he called my grandmother to ask about the pregnancy), so I guess he's made his choice. I have to accept that he wants a relationship where I do all the work, and I'm not willing to do that anymore.
post #225 of 402
I understand all too well. I began blogging about it so as not to bore my friends to death about my constant "issues" with my mom. If anyone cares to read it, you can pm me for the address.
post #226 of 402
Hi all ~ Just found this thread. So good to know we're not alone, you know? I recently started coming to terms with the fact that my mother emotionally abused me through guilt and manipulation. No put downs, but for my entire life I have felt responsible for her feelings and at times she used me as her friend, mother (her mother was quite sick most of her childhood and died when she was in college and i suspect many of her issues come from this), or her spouse, confiding in my about my dad and essentially turning me against him and passing on a whole host of problems about marriage, vulnerability, trust, negativity, unthankfulness, bitterness, etc. It is one of those tough cases where our family sweeps EVERYTHING under the rug and pretends everything is ok when it SO isn't - plus my mom is a people pleaser and manipulates people to like her, so I'm often getting comments like "oh i LOVE your mom! she's so sweet!" yeah, right. sweet like poison.

I actually broke the silence about her abuse to my dad last week and while he admitted a lot of things were true, he found it hard to believe what I was saying though he kept saying he of course had no reason to doubt me, it was just a huge surprise. But he's in so much denial about the whole situation. She shows him NO respect whatsoever and essentially made him the scapegoat for all of our family problems, and and even has him believing he's the scapegoat, which is pretty sad. It was scary but liberating to talk to him about it, because I've been guilted so badly into protecting her that i had to battle that.

IN any case, i'm confronting her with these issues this week. I feel bad (which I shouldn't) dreging up all this stiff, but DH and I are really suffering in our marriage from the power she has over me. So i'm taking steps to break that hold she has, and even if I were estranged from her, that would be better than losing my husband and daughter for her, which is the path we're headed on right now.

Anyway, just wanted to chime in with a bit about my story. Hugs to everyone here. I want DD to have an emotionally healthy relationship with me, and I know that's NOTHING like what I saw growing up. I can't imagine what it would be like to have the "normal" issues with family instead of this really disturbing stuff.
post #227 of 402


We're not the most active tribe, but it's nice to know we're not alone.
post #228 of 402
Hi. Although I'm not totally estranged from my parents- I hold them at arm's lenghth, to say the least.

My parents had a rough time of it for my entire life at home (from the time i was about 4 until I went away to school at 18). My father was a very physically abusive (towards my mother) alcoholic. They were both very young when they had me and my sister (20). My mother was verbally abusive to us and him.

fast forward to today- my father tries to make amends. He is no longer an active alcoholic.
My mother is still the same person. they've divorced. But, she is just a very mean woman. I'm the oldest and I cannot do anything right. She is very verbally abusive towards me, even as a grown adult. And I take it. There is no conversation that we can have that would allow her to see how she treats me and I've given up that avenue. I am very aware that I have only 2 choices. 1. to cut her out... to no longer be her daughter. and 2. to keep my mouth shut and take it. and spend my life in therapy!

she even blames me for my sister's shortcomings (and there are MANY)! She picks at the way I look. What I believe. My dh has NO patience for this and they've had MANY screaming battles about this. Even in public. She will try to get me in public so that she can belittle me in front of people. When I was 24 I bought a dog. On the day I was to pick him up from his breeder SHE CALLED THE BREEDER and told her that I "was not a very bright person, I drank a lot, I had no money and that I was just not responsible enough for anothe rliving thing"!!! When I arrived the woman confronted me about it. She was a school mate of my Dad's so she was unsure what was happening and, in the end, I had my father call her and explain that my mother was a whack-job.

It's a slippery-slope and I"m glad to have found this thread. Maybe I'll be able to share some more and learn something from your stories too.
post #229 of 402
Add me to the list!

My mother, father and grandmother are soooo taxic to me. In the last 2 months i have cut off my relationship with my mother, and have given her the abbility to come over to my home any given day to see my dd, and she didnt call or see her for 3 weeks! (she lives like 8 minutes away!)We are constantly fighting, and making up. She wants me to be dependent on her financially (like my sister) so that she can control our lives and tell us what to do. I had an interview for a job last week that she was supposed to watch my dd for me for an hour, she never showed up! I called and she was "stuck at the Drs office" which i could completely understand, but why she didnt think to call me and lmk is beyond me. Her new husband recently made a very vulgar and inappropriate comment about my 2 year old dd, and i have decided and talked to my mother that i no longer want my dd to be over at my mothers home. I asked my mom if she could come over to my house to watch my dd for 2 hours between a shift change of me and DH, she REFUSED! And said that if she wanted me to watch her i HAD to bring her to her house! And her reasoning was that i was being ridiculous, accusing her DH of that. I felt as though she was manipulating me into putting my dd into a situation that i was not ok about, or possibly loosing my job if i couldn't get there on time. UGH! And now since we have made up she wants to help out (aka bribe us) financially! Oh and she gave my dd foods that she is not allowed to have because of medial reasons, and then told me i was over reacting when i freaked out! I hate that i have to rely on her to watch my dd. I dont have any other options. But you know, writing this out now, i think i need to get on the market for a babysitter.

My father is my step father, but he adopted me when i was 2. I am not a big fan of the guy. There where some questionable things that happened in my childhood and he is just not the kind of person i dont respect or get along with at all. And not someone i want to leave my dd with either.

And my grandmother, is the meanest lady you have ever met!! She does love me and i know it, but the horrible things that come out of her mouth (she is a firm believer in tough love ONLY) would make a grown man cry! Lets just say warm and fuzzy are the furthest thoughts from my mind when i think of her or my mom.

Im sure i will be back adding more soon, i have recently hit my breaking point mentally. And i am going to make my relationships into healthy ones, or they are no longer going to be active relationships in my life. I just dont have the energy to deal with it now that i have a child.
post #230 of 402
Quote:
Originally Posted by cristeen View Post
:bump

We're not the most active tribe, but it's nice to know we're not alone.
Thanks so much for bumping! Looks like I have a lot of catching up to do...
post #231 of 402
I had stopped answering my 'mother's' (she truly does not deserve the title) calls but then my nephew got cancer and it would have been difficult to keep ignoring her. So she was calling me once a week to ask about nephew/sister (his mom, my sister, her other daughter) she NOT once asked about my 3 kids or me. Even called on my daughter's B-day and I had my dd answer because I thought she was calling for her. Nope she didn't even tell my dd happy b-day, she had forgotten.
Okay then I made a huge mistake of trusting my sister with something very important it blew up in my face (as did she) and it got nasty on my sister's end (she is so toxic, I truly thought she'd changed). I mostly kept it together since my sister has enough bad shit going on right now. But we are now estranged for the last time. I had only in the last 2 yrs let her back into my life. Big mistake. Although I did get to know my youngest nephew very well since I was his care provider for a little over a year (10.5-11 hrs a day/5 days a week). I'm glad I got to know him and love him although I'll not see him anymore and he is very sick (so many emotions there).

So my 'mother' stopped calling me right after the blow up with sister and I'm assuming she's cut me out as well. I know I'm better off but my freakin gawd how could she do that to me, how could she not care about me hurting? She always has sided with my sister, she has always prefered her, and they do quite a bit of bonding while talking shit about me. I am so better off as are my children w/o either of them but it still hurts all the same. I now have NO FAMILY aside from my children and husband. And anyone my sister and I both know (and everyone she knows) have only heard her side and she is really using the fact her son has cancer to her advantage (I know it sounds sick and horrible for me to say that but it's the truth). She is absolutely smearing me to but it lightly.
I hope every single day that my nephew is healed and has a complete recovery not only from the cancer but from the treatments as well. I love him so much and so do my kids. We will really miss him.
post #232 of 402
I'm about halfway through reading this thread and I am already jumping up and down going "mememememe!!!" I can relate to so much of what everyone has said.

I just stared to type out basically what I already did on this thread. I think I am just really upset right now and need to get it out over and over.

My mother is the type who is perfect and everyone should see that and obey her and never question her. Everyone else, however, is vindictive and out to get her.

No one suffers more than my mother. No one has had a more painful history or is in as much physical and emotional pain now.

She is unwilling to work for anything. Why should she? She has no need to and no responsibility. Why should she pay her bills or help out or keep her promises? That's everyone else's job.

We shouldn't talk about things unless she wants to and then we have to whether we are ready or not.

We should just forgive her for what we think she did because she said she was sorry (not sincerely but hey she didn't really do it, right?) but when we have done something wrong to her (always) she will bring it up for decades.

If you are anything different then she is you are so far gone and so wrong that she doesn't even feel the need to look at you- unless of course you have something to offer her like money or a ride or a pat on the back.

My mom always has to have people who will hang on her every word and treat her like a god. If you don't you are being cruel. And if you don't let her get away with calling you names or treating you like garbage you are also being cruel and horrid to poor little sick her.

Oh and she is sick so everything bad she does is automatically excused and must be forgotten.

Everything is everyone else's fault.

When faced with her own short coming she declares "yes I am just so abusive/horrible/a terrible mother/etc" in a condescending tone and then stomps off. See people only confront her when they want to make her hurt and when they want to make themselves feel better. If you press too hard she declares she is going to slit her wrists or throat. And you don't have to be an adult to get this reply from her. My little sister was crying at her for missing something or other that was important to her and she got the "yes I am a horrible mother! I'll just go slit my wrists would that make you happy?" my poor sister was begging her not to and my mother was getting so much joy out of it, you could tell.

Ok deep breath!

I need to get her out of our lives but as I said in that other post I have a lot of guilt.

I can relate with those who have said they miss family- not *their* family but family. I do too. I am so sad about us having just us for holidays and birthdays. But you know it's a really good thing i think. It's not like we are hurting for numbers
post #233 of 402
Your mother sounds similar to mine. Mine is self-centered to absurdness. I think mine is a narcissist. When she was still calling me she told me that the whole city (damn can't remember which city it was) was basically out to get her because only bad things happened to her there. It was hard to not laugh in her ear on that one. She is never to blame.
There are so many things she has said or done that are just messed up. I could right a novel.
I do mourn not having family. It breaks my heart that my kids don't know what it feels like to have family that loves and adores them. Holidays and Birthdays really drive that home. I do not know how to move passed the pain and anger.
post #234 of 402
When you leave a toxic parent how do you explain it to your kids and guard them against the parent?

My mother is the type that will show up to our new home (she knows where it is because it's a family home) and either just walk into my house or get the kids when they are playing and walk up to them all smiles and such. The kids know she lies but they are still so young that she is their grammy and they love her. I am actually really afraid of this. She likes to do stuff like that and feels it is her right to see our kids. She has done it before when we asked her not to come around. She has showed up and grabbed onto them and when I ask her to put them down and leave she just smirks and kisses them and hugs them closer and tells them that she hasn't been around because of mommy and daddy and they should ask us to let her be around, etc. I just wish my kids would know how horrible she really is and not go near her when she does come.
post #235 of 402
and welcome to our new members. I'm glad you found us.

Quote:
Originally Posted by magstphil View Post
I can relate with those who have said they miss family- not *their* family but family. I do too. I am so sad about us having just us for holidays and birthdays. But you know it's a really good thing i think. It's not like we are hurting for numbers
I've become a firm believer in making your own family. Growing up we had "aunts" and "uncles" and "cousins" - none of whom were actually related and I never understood it. Now I do. That was my mother's way of filling those holes in her life. While this child may never know his bio-grandparents (or aunt), he will have a set of grandparents, as well as a great-grandma, a godmother/aunt who will dote on him, an aunt, several uncles and cousins. None of whom (with the exception of great-grandma and one uncle) are actually blood relatives. I've accepted that that's the way it has to be.

As for the holidays... we rotate them. This year Thanksgiving is at godmother's house, and Xmas will be spent at home alone. A few years ago Thanksgiving was "alone" and Xmas was here (12 for dinner). Last year we were "alone" for both. On our "alone" holidays, we invite bachelor friends over for a home-cooked holiday meal - we get to have a house full of love and warmth, they get a good meal and don't have to spend the holiday alone, we all win.

For birthdays... my expectations are a little skewed, I'm afraid. Growing up I never got a celebration on my birthday (Christmas baby), and often times it was all but forgotten. So my measuring stick for birthdays is that my DH remembers, and we celebrate somehow - big or small (and my grandma always remembers with a card or phone call). As long as he makes the day special for me, we're good. Growing up he never had a birthday either, so I do the same for him. Some years that means going out to brunch or dinner, some years more... last year (for my bday) it just meant some quality time at home that netted us this little one (I don't even remember what else we did that day - that was the important part ). For his bday (the big 4-0), we spent the weekend in Vegas painting the town red. For the little one, my intention is the same... that the day be special, because ultimately that's the important thing (to me).
post #236 of 402
My mom had been calling almost every day to see if we'd pick her up from Tennessee ( she doesn't have a car) and let her stay with us for a couple of weeks. She hopes to see the baby being born. i haven't answered the phone when she calls and Dh hasn't told her anything either. Well out of the blue she calls and leaves a message saying that she and my aunt and her kids are on the way to my house to stay overnight and then drive to the beach. Gee thanks for asking if it was ok in the first place! They came over a few hours later. Dh wasn't home he was out of town and I was stuck with them. I like my aunt but my mom should know better. If I don't ever answer my phone its because I don't want to talk to you. If i haven't given you an answer about coming to get you, then that probably means I don't want to come and get you! I think she wanted to stay with us while my aunt went to the beach with her kids but i think she could tell by the way I looked at her that it wasn't happening! They left the next day early am and thankfully she hasn't called since then. I hope she got the message. Well I did hear her tell my dd that she was coming back to see her in 4 weeks.
post #237 of 402
Quote:
Originally Posted by magstphil View Post
When you leave a toxic parent how do you explain it to your kids and guard them against the parent?

My mother is the type that will show up to our new home (she knows where it is because it's a family home) and either just walk into my house or get the kids when they are playing and walk up to them all smiles and such. The kids know she lies but they are still so young that she is their grammy and they love her. I am actually really afraid of this. She likes to do stuff like that and feels it is her right to see our kids. She has done it before when we asked her not to come around. She has showed up and grabbed onto them and when I ask her to put them down and leave she just smirks and kisses them and hugs them closer and tells them that she hasn't been around because of mommy and daddy and they should ask us to let her be around, etc. I just wish my kids would know how horrible she really is and not go near her when she does come.
I suppose it really depends... how far do you want to take this? Does she have any right to be on the property (you say it's a family home)? If not, ask her to leave and tell her if she doesn't you will call the cops for trespassing - and then follow through. It may be that you have to file a restraining order against her... but again, it depends on how far you want to take it. I wouldn't have any difficulty doing that with my MIL, who seems to have similar mental issues as your situation. But my father (I don't think) would ever push me that far.

I'd also be very honest with your children about how you don't want her around them... you said they've experienced some of her craziness - and your oldest is probably old enough to make some connections... remind her of those incidents and tell her that when that happened it made you very sad/mad/etc., and that you don't want her (DD) hurt in that way again, so you've told grammy to stay away. If you can make a clean cut, chances are good that your oldest is the only one who will have memories of her in a year - and it won't ever be an issue with the twins.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LilMamiBella View Post
My mom had been calling almost every day to see if we'd pick her up from Tennessee ( she doesn't have a car) and let her stay with us for a couple of weeks. She hopes to see the baby being born. i haven't answered the phone when she calls and Dh hasn't told her anything either. Well out of the blue she calls and leaves a message saying that she and my aunt and her kids are on the way to my house to stay overnight and then drive to the beach. Gee thanks for asking if it was ok in the first place! They came over a few hours later. Dh wasn't home he was out of town and I was stuck with them.
Honestly, I think by not speaking up, she's taking it as carte blanch to do what she wants. She called and asked, you didn't say no, so she did it. "It's easier to ask for forgiveness than permission." Personally, if they'd shown up at my doorstep, I'd have handed them the phone book and given them directions to the local Motel 6. Blame it on pregnancy if you have to "I'm just too tired to have house guests with this pregnancy" or whatever.

Right now the hardest part for me is making the invite list for my baby shower - because I have to eliminate a whole branch of the family in order for my parents not to find out about it.
post #238 of 402
I must remember this is here.

Hugs to all of you dealing with toxic relatives.
post #239 of 402
Honestly, I think by not speaking up, she's taking it as carte blanch to do what she wants. She called and asked, you didn't say no, so she did it. "It's easier to ask for forgiveness than permission." Personally, if they'd shown up at my doorstep, I'd have handed them the phone book and given them directions to the local Motel 6. Blame it on pregnancy if you have to "I'm just too tired to have house guests with this pregnancy" or whatever.


You're absolutely right. I guess I was hoping that be me not answering they wouldn't bother showing up. I like my aunt and her kids though and she always invited us over for thanksgiving dinner. I felt like i shouldn't act like that towards her. But my mom ugh! You are right though I have to be clear and blunt because otherwise she doesn't care. I mean she knew i didn't want her there and yet she went ahead and came. She pressures me. Honestly we'd have a much better relationship if she'd back off. I don't like her calling me every day and have told her this. She expects us to be best friends or something and that ain't happening.
post #240 of 402
When we cut my mother off we sat down and talked with our kids who were all 9 and up. (teens) they have seen her in action and I explained that due to some of grandma's behavior (most of it too bad to tell them about) we were not going to talk to her anymore and they were not to answer the phone or door if she called or showed up.

They asked why and we told them in age appropriate terms, your grandma is telling you things that are hurtful and not true and is unwell and we don't want you to be hurt or scared by her.

She had told them by phone that their adored littlest cousin had cancer and since they are naive children they believed her and freaked out. So at this point my mom has supervised visitation with my kids, supervised calls, visits, and phone calls by me or dh. We went a whole year without talking to her and due to the grief she was causing my sister I got sucked back in but it's different a bit now. She knows we could go silent at any time if she doesn't behave.

They were greatly relieved actually. They dread her visits, packages, voice, antics.

It depends on the age of the child I think. My oldest daughter knows way more of it.

It was actually my dh who "cheated" and let her talk to them on the phone supervised. The kids really don't enjoy their relationship with her and they fear her or pity her.

I was quite suprised dh did that. But my mom is sooo persistent and somehow she convinced dh, who I would nominate for stubbornest man on earth ;-) to not tell me she had called but the kids blabbed. I wanted to ring his neck that night. But that's what she is "spiderwoman" and she can weave you into her web sooo fast you don't know you are stuck til she's got you wrapped up in guilt and she gets her way. And if you don't talk to her she'll threaten you at work, leave voice mails, get you fired, call the child abuse hotline, call your church and send the preacher/elders out to talk sense to you about honoring your mother, call the Red Cross to find you in another country as she did to my bil, send you packages her pets wet on... you name it. so with this particular borderline we treat it like visiting day at prison because it's way more effort to ignore her. It can make them totally unstabe.

So we do have a little contact but it is at our home or was until Christmas and after that it will be at a public place where we can pick up and LEAVE!!! (Don't take your shoes off kids!) and very short periods of time. Just long enough for the kids to show off a bit and her to feel like she knows them. no sense dragging it out and being miserable. Protect the kids as much as possible, debrief to make sure they know this behavior is not socially acceptable. LOL
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Personal Growth
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Talk Amongst Ourselves › Personal Growth › support thread for mamas with toxic and/or estranged parents