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worried I'm becomming my mother
May 1, 2007
9:26 am
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2alone
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I've been working on myself lately - trying hard g to figure out why I fall into the same disturbing patterns. I seem to be a maganet for narcissists and EA. I want that to end. I want to be happy and healthy for my daughters. I realized that I'm scared to death I'm becomming my mother. My mother married an abusive narcissist. She divorced him when I was a baby. She's controlling. She co-dep and a bit narcissistic herself. She's dated off and on during my lifetime - but she's never re-married. She lives through me. I'm scared to death I'm going to end up alone - clinging to my children for happiness. I think that is what drives me to be with a man. And the men that are drawn to me are the unhealthy ones. How do I get over this fear of being alone? How do I stop worrying that I'll end up like my mother?

May 1, 2007
9:42 am
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risingfromtheashes
st regis falls, ny
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well, the first step in fixing a problem is identifying it.

so, the good news is, you are on your way to solving it.

The next step is figuring out "what next".

And I think that instead of focusing on who you DON'T want to be, try to come up with an image of who you DO want to be.

You know the kind of mom you had. You know you don't want that.

So, who do you want to be?

Sometimes finding the answer to that is easy - imagine the type of mother you WANTED to have as a child.

It's alot of work and takes alot of discipline and willpower...cuz we have some kind of "inner programming" that happens as a child, and we tend to repeat those patterns unconciously.

So, we have to be aware, we have to be concious, we have to think decisions thru, we have to be on guard in a way.

Set goals...make a plan...imagine...dream.

Envision what you want in life...instead of flying by the seat of your pants...reacting to things as they happen...ACT before you have to react.

I wonder if your need to have a man comes from what mom did OR from the lack of a man in your life and perhaps you feel you were cheated in a way and don't want your children to be cheated like you felt you were.

Perhaps you felt a man would have protected you from your mom's bad behaviour? And that a man will keep you from being a bad mom? Did you struggle financially and feel a man would have kept that from happening?

At this point, you need to dig down deep and figure out what having a man represents to you. So you can work at realizing you don't need a man for that reason.

I am a single mom...and I actually believe I can do a better job at raising my daughter WITHOUT a man because I see how my parents are and I detest my dad and how he treated me...so instead of feeling like I need a man, I feel I don't. That whole grass is always greener on the other side idea.

Another thing...if you are worried that you will live your life THRU your kids...then get hobbies...find activities that YOU enjoy, that make you feel like you are accomplishing something...things that make you feel complete...art, music, dance, exercise, volunteering, reading, crafts, gardening, etc....find stuff to do on your own...to help you have a full life, so you don't need to live thru someone else for it.

Also teach your children to be independent...have their own interests, hobbies, sports...friends...so that they don't cling to you....so they become happy independent adults who don't need to rely on others for their own happiness...that's the best gift you can give them.....to be able to stand on their own feet, be independent, think for themselves...and pursue a future that they love.

I hope this helps....remember...awareness of the problem is a great first step.

May 1, 2007
10:09 am
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balancesekr
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hi 2alone,

rising did a great job with advice on this one. I am in the process of creating a life for myself and trying to break out of my old patterns.

It is totally normal for you to fear becoming your mother. It sounds like you are searching for yourself and the best way to find yourself is by living your life, feeling your emotions and realizing what you can and can't control.

Do you spend a lot of time with your mother? If you do, you may want to lessen the time and break free, spend more time in your life. Being around her my cloud your thinking, she may trigger you to act certain ways, I say this because I know it happens to me and I share the same fear you have, of becoming my mother.

As far as getting over the fear of being alone, put yourself out there more. Reach out to your friends, sign up for a class, go to a coffee shop with a book and just surround yourself with some people. Isolating yourself with only hurt you. Keep posting here! There are great people on this board who can support you and love you.

b

May 1, 2007
10:20 am
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risingfromtheashes
st regis falls, ny
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balance also brings up a good point that I hadn't really remembered.

distancing yourself from your mom will help you figure out who YOU are.

my parents always lived "close" to me...sometimes I lived with them, other times I lived right next to them...other times a few blocks from them.

I always felt it was a good thing, cuz my daughter got the benefit of having a second set of "parents"...and that helped fill the gaps where I couldn't fill them myself.

BUT...there was a sacrifice...my identity and my standing as a mom.

You see, I had to "share" with my parents...and that really took away some of my own personal power...as well as my authority over my daughter.

It wasn't bad...overall I think it was good, they all have a good relationship....and it served it's purpose at the time.

BUT - I see such a difference in my relationship with my daughter NOW that I am away from them. And I FEEL like a mom now...not just someone that is coparenting a child with someone else. I have less free time for myself, but that's ok. I probably took advantage of my mom's availability too much and took too much "me" time away from my daughter.

Anyway, my parents are now 3000 miles away and I think for ALL of us, life is better. My dad is an alcoholic and my daughter doesn't have to witness that....my mom isn't pulled into the middle of the conflicts between me and dad...and I am not raging about how my dad acts...and I am not witnessing his behaviours...and I am not being emotionally abused by him...and because he's not near...I don't seek out his approval or his love anymore....which leaves me free to seek the love of other, healthier people.

I could have easily moved south with them....they would have loved it...and my daughter too...but I finally made the decision to break free from them. And live MY life for myself.

and glad I did.

So, if you still find yourself living in mom's shadow....perhaps it's wise to start living your own life - and becoming your own person...whoever YOU want that to be.

May 1, 2007
10:57 am
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2alone
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Wow - great advice. I am currently living with my mother. My not yet ex-husband (3 year divorce) thought it was a great idea - with mom - to have her move in and be our nanny. He moved out with his girlfriend. I got the large house and mom. Don't get me wrong she's very helpful and I have been able to provide a lot more for the girls than without her. But I just need to get away. I feel like I have to divorce her too to keep my sanity. My therapist has gently been guiding me towards separation - but the path of least resistance during this emotional time has been the route I've taken. I need to grow up and be mommy. The girls and I will be fine (I keep telling my self)I do have hobbies and friends. I'm not too worried about living through my girls unless I sink into a depression again. I have a hard time telling my mom that its time to sell the house and move our separate ways. She loves to tell me that I'll never make it on my own. Same thing my STBX always told me.

I'm going to think about why I feel like I need to have a man in my life. I think its companionship. I make good money. I have good friends. Off the top of my head I think its love - acceptance - feeling self worth because someone else cares about me. Ugh! I need to find that in myself. So much work to do!
2alone

May 1, 2007
11:23 am
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risingfromtheashes
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path of least resistance...boy, you nailed that one for me.

I always took mom for granted...she lived close, and didn't have a life and was always willing to watch my munchkin.

So, I took advantage of it.

And my dad, friends, family ALWAYS said I couldn't live without my mom (emotionally) and that I would always follow my parents, no matter where they went.

Perhaps you fear failure? Perhaps the idea of living alone frightens you because your ex and your mom both tell you that you will fail.

You won't.

Be brave.

Having mom around WILL influence your attitudes and thinking...and will influence your children.

it is nice to have the benefit of having mom close...BUT...there are sacrifices too.

maybe you need to set a goal and work towards it.

companionship is wonderful and a good reason for having a partner...just make sure that's your only motives....think hard on it.

and as I advised someone else....get your head on straight and get yourself into a good place, then worry about dating...only cuz if you are in a healthy state of mind, you will attract a healthy partner and recognize the unhealthy ones. Or if you are misled by an unhealthy one, you will be in the right frame of mind to see it and get out without alot of mess.

May 7, 2007
4:34 pm
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danielle7373
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"I'm going to think about why I feel like I need to have a man in my life. I think its companionship. I make good money. I have good friends. Off the top of my head I think its love - acceptance - feeling self worth because someone else cares about me. Ugh! I need to find that in myself. So much work to do! 2alone"

i can relate to this wayyyyy too well. there is a lot of great advice on this thread. thank you all.

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