Want advice...having problems with the word NO

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by DammitJanet, May 14, 2008.

  1. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I seem to be having problems saying the word NO to my family and it is going to end up either killing me or causing me really horrible harm physically. My therapist is convinced it goes back to the way I was not nurtured as a small child so I feel as if I am not worth diddly. I am also a fixer and want to please everyone...sigh.

    Because of my physical problems I am getting really worn down. I am in so much pain constantly now and I can hardly walk more than a few feet without severe pain and fatigue. If you could see me trying to walk up the steps to the house it would be almost comical if I wasnt in such pain.

    My family seems to think that because I dont work that I should still be able to do everything around the house...all the driving everyone everywhere, all the dishes, cooking, laundry, etc. I cant.

    My day starts around 4;45 am when I have to get up to take Cory about 8 miles to meet his ride to work. Come home. Then I have to be up again at 7 to take Mandy and Billy to school. I have to get Billy from school at noon and bring him home or take him to work depending on his schedule. Then I have to go get him from work. Sometimes..but not often...I have to take Mandy to work. I am supposed to wash the dishes and get dinner started during the interim. Throw clothes in to wash and dry. Feed the animals, run to the store, go to my doctor appointments...all that minutia.

    Something has to give. husband has to get up at 4 anyway to go to work and I dont see a reason in the world that he cant leave a few minutes earlier to take Cory so I dont have to so I dont have to have that one on me. I can never get to bed before midnight or so. I just cant. He doesnt understand this and it makes him mad. I am also thinking of telling Billy he has to tell the store that his available hours are from the time he gets out of class to 7 pm at night...no more until 9 pm at night. I dont do well driving that late. If I could get Tony to take Cory in the mornings and Billy's hours changed, plus get them to take on the rest of the house hold chores I might actually make it. if not, Im gonna end up dying.

    Im seriously considering telling my family that my doctor has ordered this change.
  2. WhymeMom?

    WhymeMom? No real answers to life..

    Yep, doctor's orders.....NO MORE DRIVING! The pain and stress is too distracting so doctor says I can't drive. Have these guys lost their licenses? Couldn't remember. Seems to me they should be arranging with others for their own rides. Mom's taxi is closed for vacation.
  3. WhymeMom?

    WhymeMom? No real answers to life..

    "My family seems to think that because I dont work that I should still be able to do everything around the house..."

    Watta ya mean I DON'T WORK?????? Get that out of your vocabulary and educate that family. Sounds to me like it might be time for a strike......

    Really Janet, take it easy. Not being able to move without pain is a very strong warning to take care of yourself. If something happens to you they would be looking elsewhere for rides, so get them started NOW. Just worried about you....

  4. mstang67chic

    mstang67chic Going Green

    Ahem....ok so..."Tony, with the cost of gas what it is, even driving Cory the 8 miles to his ride and then 8 miles back costs us money. If you are already going that way, it makes sense FINANCIALLY for you to drop him on your way."

    As for Mandy and Billy.....do they go to a funky school or are there no buses out in the boonies where you live? Do they not have FRIENDS???

    As for dishes.....are you the only one who eats off of them? I would take that money you'll save on gas by having husband take Cory and go to Wallyworld. Get a biiiiiiig piece of poster board and make a chore chart/schedule. Post it prominently. They all eat off the dishes and wear clean clothes....they can all participate in said items getting clean.

    If they don't believe that you are killing yourself doing all of this, tell your doctor what you just told us and I'll bet you apples to oranges that he/she WILL give you a note to present to the family. (WHERE you present it to each of them is, of course, up to you.....with UP being the operative word :wink: )
  5. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911


    I am so sorry for you. Really. I used to be just like you are. I'm not worth diddly, I can't say no, I'm a fixer. I was nurtured as a child - it was the subconscious adoption thing that messed with me. You feel as if you start life being thrown away or found in a dumpster - and that is your worth. Whether you admit it or not, your brain is telling you things subconsciously that are not true.

    You ARE caring - to a fault. In fault I mean there isn't anything you won't do to help/fix/carry/do/go/see/be/bathe/wash/fight/give/have/loose/love your family. Sometimes I wonder if we don't feel guilt about our boys and think - well I can fix this - I'll just love them better. It never works. But then you sit and think - "MY GOD if it's THIS bad WITH my help and I'm doing all this stuff what in the WORLD would this situation be like WITHOUT my help?" and then we start to go through the stages of grief - and barter, deal, cry - etc. I think that's a load of your health issues - IMVVVVVHO - you are so willing to die a small death every day through grieving to get what little happiness you do get - you feel justified in telling EVERYONE around you - OH I can do that for you, I'll take you here, there, I'll buy this, I'll pay for that and in the mean time there is Janet and Tony who have grown worlds apart due to I would guess just giving up and giving in.

    You and I and the rest of the free world KNOW taking Cory to work is NOT going to hurt anything. IF YOU DID IT ONCE IN A WHILE when you COULD.
    You also know taking the others to work, school, etc and picking them up - is only prolonging the inevitable. - SOMEONE BESIDES MOM NEEDS TO EITHER FIND A RIDE OR PAY YOU to DO IT. And gas in the tank is NOT a "pay".

    I watched my xmil go through the same thing as you. At first I thought that she was the MOST UBER devoted Southern Momma in the world. She would give them anything - (then cry and whine later to everyone about how she was taken advantage of) and I would think - THEN JUST STOP DOING IT. It wasn't that simple as it had become habit to her. Unlike YOU she never knew when to ask how to say NO. She wasn't a good Southern Mom - she wasn't even a good mother in law - she was a miserable self-medicating BiPolar (BP) woman, who did crazy stunts and kept her boys hanging from her teet until the day she died. I remember telling her - EVENTUALLY everyone is weaned - when's HIS turn? And pointed to my x - in a heap, after being gone drugging for 3 weeks - not concerned that I had no car, no diapers, no baby seat, no formula for OUR son - and she was handing him MONEY to go get more drugs to come down on. ARGH!!! She just kept right on going and going and whining and crying and making herself VERY VERY sick and I told her "One day - these "boys" are going to be the death of you." and I was right - One of them ran her over with her OWN van because they wanted at 51 years of age, and at 3:00 IN THE MORNING, living in HER house with a girlfriend - to take them BACK 5 miles down the road to a bar so they could get MORE high and MORE trashed. - She stood behind her car when they tried to take it without her permission - and eventually her son ran over her. THe rest of the families philosophy? No sense in telling the police their brother ran her over - she's dead. And on about their lives they went. No one ever went to jail for her death. It's a family secret.

    And I'm not saying anyone is going to run you over with a van - but they are SURE doing a fine job of making you feel like you OWE them a dang thing. Girl - I'd kick off my flip flops, have a come to Jesus meeting in the living room - and I'd tell everyone EXACTLY how it's going to be. Tony too - Yeah he can be mad, but YOU ARE SICK and Cory is HIS KID too.

    It's never too late to take back your house or your sanity. Know this - WHEN I did things regarding Dude that I thought were uncaring and unloving and made me think I was the WORST Mom ever - I actually helped him grow up. When I STOPPED WONDERING what things WOULD be like without my help and just let go? I no longer have that stress - of course I worry, OF COURSE I love him....but ask yourself this. AT what age do I make my sons and their S/O's responsible for THEIR LIVES - in a way you are enabling them to stay there, and NEVER get out - by agreeing and not being able to say no - you're doing more harm than good. Really. Really!

    You know I love you with all my heart. You've been there for me with great advice a long time. And I love your kids too. BUT - YOU are my friend, and YOU are the one that ultimately has to say IT STOPS NOW - and you don't have to yell or cry, or fuss - JUST make a statement, stick to it - and give everyone a deadline -

    Even a goal like that - can relieve so much stress in you - and then maybe you COULD make it up the stairs without any one laughing. WHich by the way - if anyone ever laughed at you in my presence? They'd be handed their teeth to put on a string for a necklace.

    Hugs - Big ones -
    I hope i have not hurt your feelings - that was not my intention. I would just LOVE to see you have free time to yourself, to enjoy the things that you love - grandchildren, advocating for kids, writing....you deserve it Janet.
  6. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    Go right ahead and tell em the doctor ordered it. Restricted driving though, so you can drive when and where YOU want to drive.

    I make Travis take the taxi when it's outta my way or inconvienent to drive him to or from work. If he doesn't want to pay the taxi or arrange a ride with easy child or sister in law he can walk. And it's over 5 miles. I don't care. That's the way it's gotta be. I don't have gas money to roam all over town with these guys.

    Remind yourself these are all grown ups you're dealing with, not children. It makes it easier to say no, or make other arrangements I have other plans. (doesn't matter if those plans are to blow bubbles in the yard with the grands)

    Once you get started though, it gets easier and easier. I'm getting rather good at it myself.

  7. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    You are all absolutely right.

    As far as some of the questions about driving...Cory lost his license for years to come. Mandy is to be getting hers soon and Billy is has never had one but he REALLY really needs to get one.

    One thing I am going to do and husband does not agree with me but I dont give a darn...when Mandy gets her license, I am putting our old second car in her name so she can do all the running around. She and Cory can be responsible for the insurance, gas and getting everyone everywhere. I didnt buy the car, Jamie did about two years ago for 400 bucks so it isnt a big deal. If Cory makes a big mistake and drives without a license...well thats on him. The car wont be tied to me in anyway. Not my problem!

    I wont allow anyone else to drive my cars...Im funny that way. I wont even allow Billy to use my car to learn to drive. Maybe that is a mistake but he scares me and it took me way too long to get this new car and Im paying a lot of money each month for it.

    We dont have buses out here. Billy and Mandy go to the local community college. Mandy is still actually in high school but she is going through this program called early college where they do both high school and college classes at the same time and when they finish they will have both a HS and an AS degree. She gets a ride home but the van doesnt come out here in the mornings. I wish it did because I am sure they would let Billy ride too. The driver is a friend of Corys...lol.

    I have attempted to lay down the law before about chores. Im going to have to do it again. The problem is that when Cory, Billy and Tony are all working, they think they shouldnt have to do anything at home because "I" am not working...Im home. I keep telling them Im only home because I was deemed disabled!!! I would be much happier if I was working too. I thank my stars for Mandy because she does help out here. It makes me feel bad though that she has to see my house get so bad and me not being able to do anything about it. She is a good girl though. Too good for Cory...lol.
  8. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    Don't feel bad about the house. Mandy sounds like a real sweet girl. I hope Cory has sense enough to keep her.

    If the driver of the van is a friend, could you ask if he'd come pick the kids up in the morning? If it's possible it might be worth a try.

    And I know you're in a smallish town like ours. Our taxi service is offering week/month passes for so much dollars. Not really expensive either. It isn't much help to Travis because he doesn't use them too often.

    Don't feel bad about allowing no one but you to drive your car either. I don't. Under any circumstances. I waited 15 long yrs to become a 2 car family, be darned if anyone is gonna change that. I'm not risking it. lol

  9. mstang67chic

    mstang67chic Going Green

    I took another peek at your signature. Degenerative joint disease....hmmmm. Show them THIS:

    Symptoms of Degenerative Joint Disease
    Initially there may be joint stiffness, usually lasting more than 15 minutes, and typically following activity of the joint. Later there may be pain on motion of the affected joint, which is made worse with activity or weight-bearing and relieved by rest. Typically OA improves with rest and does not remain symptomatic at night time. It is usually better in the morning, and it worsens as the day progresses.

    There may be limitation of motion of the affected joint, although this is a later finding. Coarse crepitus (a creaking or cracking) may be felt in the joint. There is usually some mild joint swelling and tenderness to touch. The joint may feel warm. A joint that cracks and snaps does not necessarily mean arthritis is present, and many patients are able to make their joints crack without having pain.

    I would take that to mean that if you stand and do dishes...stand, reach and bend to do laundry, stand, reach, bend to clean....you will HURT. If they can't understand that then they can fend for themselves. Period.
  10. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Make Tony take Cory, when Mandy gets her license, the car idea is great....and take the money you save from driving everyone everywhere and buy paper plates!

    Make a plan and stick to it.
  11. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    I will quote Barbara Bush, or was it Nancy Reagan? (I have CRS)
    "Just Say NO!"
  12. Abbey

    Abbey Spork Queen


    (Off my soapbox now.) Sending you hugs.

  13. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    I think it's time for you to spend a few days staying with a sick friend.

    On the subject of them feeling that because they 'work' (ie leave the home for paid employment) then they shouldn't have to do chores - sorry folks, but when you leave home to live independently, there is nobody else to do those chores, so you may as well learn NOW how to do them and get into the habit. Everyone pitches in equally according to their ability.

    We're dealing with the washing up battles at the moment. We have a rule - whoever cooks does not wash up (you can have the rule the other way of you want - it's a matter of what works in your household). Part of that rule is that whoever was home for the meal has to be prepared to wash up. If you didn't eat, you didn't contribute to the washing up, so you shouldn't have to do it.

    If they don't want to wash up, then they have to cook the meal. Whoever cooks the meal has to plan it in its entirety, including budgeting for it and shopping for ingredients.

    I still tend to do most of the cooking. husband does some, usually stepping in to help me or to finish something off (such as carving a roast, or doing the actual wok stir-frying, which I can't manage). I cook a lot of meals in bulk and then freeze them so we have leftovers for emergencies and fussy eaters. Some meals can be partly pre-prepared in bulk, and then you can play around with them a bit. For example, bolognese sauce - I cook up a kilo of meat at a time. From there, it can be used for spaghetti bolognese, chilli con carne, lasagne, ravioli or canneloni, tacos, nachos, burritos. I make my own pasta (I use a hand-cranked pasta machine) which is a flavoursome budget beater. Lately I've been cooking more roast dinners because I've been able to get cheaper meat for roasting and I then roast a lot of vegetables as well, in a separate tray. Being home means I can plan meals with longer cooking times and supervise without wearing myself out. I also am home, instead of in paid employment, due to disability. As a result I've developed methods, techniques and recipes to feed people economically and deliciously, without wearing myself out. Part of the technique is to involve others when I can. Their failure to engage and help risks their loss of benefits. For example, failure to help me hang out the washing means I'm less able to get the washing done; I have to leave out somebody's stuff because I no longer have the energy to wash it ALL. Failure to help me bring the washing in when it's dry means that it will get wet from the dew and have to stay out on the clothes line even longer - the consequence is, no clean dry clothes for people to wear, because no help eventuated to get the washing in.

    Janet, I rest during the day when I can, so I have the energy to be on deck when the family comes home and needs me. If I don't get my rest, the family don't get me on deck.

    I hope you can sort them out. I do like getting the doctor on side, but if you do this you HAVE to follow through. No excuses, no exceptions.

    And for those who lost drivers licenses - a big reason for this is PUNISHMENT. It's not punishment if they have a chauffeur on call. How will he ever appreciate consequences, if you're always there to drive him where he wants to go?

    Good luck with this one. Old habits take time to break down, especially when they're resistant. They have no motivation to change, unless you can give them one ("change, or I'll go on total strike!")

  14. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Well I am back from the doctor and a bit peeved at him as well. My blood pressure is 185 over 110, he looked at the pain scale/chart I took him and decided I sounded "depressed" more than in pain! Ohhhhh dont even get me started on that. I quickly told him that I have a psychiatrist and a therapist that help me with my bipolar issues and I am NOT depressed! I am angry, stressed, tired and irritable because I am IN PAIN!

    This idiot tried to tell me that all the new conferences he has attended say that treating fibro should now only be treated with AD's and lyrica and not pain medications because they lead to addiction. Well honey...I cant take AD's or lyrica! And...I dont think my main problem IS the fibro at this point...its my joint degeneration. I would gladly put up with some muscle aches...I cant walk! My joints wont bend. So all he did was up my lorcet to 3 a day. I guess that is better than the 1 a day he was giving me...sigh.

    Oh....edited to add...I have decided to tell the family that major changes are going to happen in the house. Tony will be taking Cory to work in the mornings. Cory doesnt mind getting there early and waiting on his ride. I will take the others to school but Billy is going to have to change his availability with his job to no later than 7 pm so I dont have drive later at night and tony can go to sleep early enough to leave to take cory in the mornings. Mandy will get her license soon and Cory will be paying to get the other car on the road so that will take it off me. They will be dividing up the chores around the house to take it off me. I am telling them that this will be done or they can come visit me in the nursing home with tubes coming out of me after I have my stroke.
  15. mstang67chic

    mstang67chic Going Green