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My Mum...Help?
November 15, 2001
3:19 pm
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Honeymajig
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Hey, it's me again. I really need some help to get some issues straight in my head and you guys were able to put it pretty well last time šŸ™‚
Counselling has been going well for the last few weeks and I have not written heremuch as I have not felt I had a lot to offer. However, I am now feeling completely overwhelmed by life and problems / ideas brought to my attention through my counselling sessions. I am starting to feel the whole depression / stress cycle start up all over again and I feel that a big 'crash' is inevitable and imminent.
It all started about a week and a half ago when I realised that it was my mum and her influences causing a lot of the internal pressures I put upon myself. This has been hard to deal with as I now can see that it has been going on for my entire life. I have always been pressurised to live up to her expectations and punished when I didn't. Now I live away from home, I am engaged and have my own life and yet I am feeling more and more as if she is trying to control my life.
I have realised she is doing this to fulfill her own ambitions and trying to encourage me to have the life that she has always wanted. I do not want this life. I have just told her that due to bad health I am going to graduate from Univerity a year late. (I did not tell her about the depression as she sees this as weakness and has told me before that i do not need counselling, i need to get my act together basically). I have no problem with graduating late as it takes a whole lot of pressure off of me and I know i will be able to graduate with a better result. She sees it as a failure. She cannot see it from my point of view that I am taking control of my own life. I do not think she wants me to have my own life. I have been brought up in her image and I do not like it. I try to change to a person I want to be...happy, successful, friendly...and she looks down on me for being different. I am finding it very hard to deal with this as I am going between conflicting emotions. I feel very angry at her for putting me in this position...to sorry for her that she has done this because maybe she does not like her life. Things are getting so bad that I do not feel I can tell her anything now, even though she is always pumping myself, my b/friend and my sister for information on my life. What can I do? Please help if you can....

Becca xx

November 15, 2001
3:31 pm
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janes
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"Mum....you are going have to deal with my 'faillure' on your own cuz to me it is not a failure but a lot of stress released and it gives me time to plan my future....." Matter of factly, no emotional etc.

Conflicting emotions? pity and anger don't REALLY conflict. Feel sorry for her that she feels (FEELS) she has to live her life through you and Angry becasue she cannot see that it isn't her business.

It can be very freeing to just let it go.... DO wwwhat YOU need to do... Her problems are her problems.

DON'T tell her anything and if you get the chance tell her it isn't her business and to lay off (nicely of course) (or rurdly if you are in the mood)

This IS your life. you need to STOP letting her TRY to run yours. If you don't want the guilt...DON'T TAKE IT. You really don't HAVE to accept it. It won't even make you a bad daughter it just makes you an individual.

Take her a college catalog mark the courses she might like in yellow highlighter and suggest she take something.....

You want counseling...get counseling...you want to let her run your life...go for it...

Otherwise....don't feel bad for growing up. She's had lots of years to plan her life and you didn't get to tell her what to do.....she's a grown up....let her be and tell her to let you be too.

Be strong....she may give you grief but what is she doing now? Won't make much difference if she's mad cuz you are standing on your own two feet or ignoring her wishes.

Be what you want to be and cut the apron strings that she wants to keep.

Good luck....want to hear from you soon.

November 15, 2001
10:45 pm
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Sofee
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I had a problems with my mother and didn't realise until she died how much of a hold she had over me and my life. 10 years has past and I'm still understanding it all. A prime example was my hair. Yes hair. She always said to me you need a haircut and why don't you get it permed silly me just did what I was told. Until I decided I wanted it straight and long, you know I put up with the nagging and winging for five years about my hair whilst I was growing it. The more I ignored her she ended up giving up yeh five years later. It was only when she was very very sick that she told me that my hair looked nice and suited me. Keep on perservering with what you want with your life- get good support in a counsellor and show her different things she can do with her life so she can leave your life alone.

November 16, 2001
12:19 am
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if u can, tell ur mom its actually HER failure that she didnt bring you up to have lots of energy and pass school in time. dump it on her šŸ™‚

November 16, 2001
10:22 am
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Molly
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Don't give the power to her. Change the way you hear things, be firm in your resolve. Thats your opinion mom, I believe this works best for me.
Sometimes I wonder, about the pressure, does mom just say and do what she knows? Is it really projection? Is it maybe just that good girl syndrome that we create in our heads? I mean she could be a real pain in the butt, still holding strings, that make you jump and dance , but maybe its not really like that, and its gotten distorted? As a mom, God knows I am not perfect, and sometimes I admit I can't see the nose on my face, but I once had this tossed on me, and it wasn't true. I could care less what the girls did when they grew up, could care less where they went to school, it was just go to school, and try not to get pregnant before marriage. Now if that is encouraging the child to live dreams, then guilty as charged. Perhaps that would be an easier way to look at it, mom just doesn't want you to relive her mistakes, and gets friggin paranoid. Try to keep a healthy seperation, in pleasing your self, and hearing her parental efforts?, She I am sure doesn't mean harm, I prefer to look at the scenarios with a loving heart, denial maybe, but lighter.

November 16, 2001
12:39 pm
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eve
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I guess it's all about struggling to be loved by your mother/and expecting her to be right (don't all children believe that their parents are perfect?). Have some pitty on her, she is not perfect, too. She propably hasn't got much other ways to show you she loves you cares bout you than what she does. Try to give her a *two part* answer when you feel that she is interfering.

*1*: appreciate that she is trying to love you, as best as she knows how to do it.
*2*: take responsibility for your own life, set your own boundaries and don't expect her to be right (that would be expecting her to be the perfect mother, and you know that from the other side, don't you?)

Like *1* mom, I see that you care for me and that you love me. Thanks for trying to help me. *2* I am and I want to be responsible for my own life. That also means that I'll do things that you maybe won't approve of. So (*1*), while I'm glad that you try to help me - I guess (*2*) that it's best for me to do things my way. We'll just both have to get used to it that I'm grown up šŸ™‚

November 16, 2001
4:39 pm
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Ladeska
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At some point you just have to have some boundaries with her. It's going to be sticky business peeling you away from her a fiber and thread at a time. You're all interwoven with each other. But, while you are doing this - you do have to have boundaries. There are some good books out there on boundaries, so read up.

One thing I'd do for sure is - tell your significant other people in your life that she pumps - to knock it off with the information. She can call you. And basically with her - you may have to treat her like she's a spoiled brat or a bully, even though she may not be that - but might act like it when you stop dancing like she's used to. By that I mean - you don't have to answer all her questions, or at least not go into as much detail, stop short of what you usually do. Just practice that. Cut off the conversation when it gets uncomfortable or just be the one who cuts it off anyway, so that you practice being in control.

Don't offer information to her. Alot of us want to talk to our mothers, when in all reality - alot of it gets us into trouble. Just be surface for now. You can love her and still be firm with her. Her reaction to that - is not your problem. Trying to have boundaries with someone in your life who is a boundary buster - isn't fun, but you either do it or you continue to suffer the consequences of not doing it. It's that simple.

I don't think you're going to change her thinking or her life - but you can change the way she gets away with - dealing with you. That - you can change and how she handles it - is in her court.

You can deal with your misplaced guilt - in your own court and yet still hold the boundaries firm. Isn't easy, but it is necessary.

What she has or has not done with her life is her problem and her loving you - isn't about projecting that onto your plate. That isn't love, period. And you're not going to teach her this - but you can put up the barriers that says - I won't let you hurt me with this anymore.

Reading up on codependency would help you, too. You are not to blame for her actions and you are not here to leave up to her expectations or dreams. You have a right to be angry in all of this and you have the right to take charge of your life.

If you want to keep talking here and bring up examples of "how do I?" we'd all be glad to give you some examples....you'll probably get the garden variety of that, too. (smile) That's good though because it makes you think, gives you choices and challenges you.

November 18, 2001
9:24 am
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Honeymajig
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*smile* thanks for the ideas Blondie!
Yeah, it's been ok this weekend, I had to go home for a big family time thing and I did try to cut her off before she started getting in to detailing my life and it worked. Really tired from all of it though so I am off to have some sleep and I will write more soon.

Thank you all

Becca xx

November 18, 2001
8:37 pm
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SuzyQ
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Becca,
I feel I can relate to you. I didn't even fully realize I had concerns like this until I was in therapy which has only been in the last 3mos. I don't know where you fall in birth order, but I am the oldest. My mother was an only child and I sometimes feel she had kids because she wanted sibs. I do feel she expected some amount of perfection from me as a child. She wanted me to play certain musical instruments and I complied. I had trouble with grades and was insulted and grounded until eternity. I tried to please all of my life and am just now dealing with this. Since I have been an adult, I have distanced myself in certain ways and have told myself that I can only please myself and not my parents. With all of us, they have said stuff behind our backs. I have actually known for awhile that I can only please myself, but it's hard damn it! when you want your parents to be proud of you. Don't get me wrong, my parents have wonderful values and are great people. This stuff has been difficult to deal with at times.
Anyway, Becca remember that this is your life and not hers. Even if you have to remind her of that. Parents don't necessarily know best.
Good Luck with everything!

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