"You're a terrible parent," said my 35 year old son.

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by MidwestMom, Jan 13, 2013.

  1. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Why? He NEEDED to talk to me (probably about his lovelife) and I told him I was watching the Packers game in five minutes so please hurry up or call me afterward.

    How dare I tell him to call me before the game or after it? He is more important than the game. As his parent it is my responsibility to be there for him 100% EVERY TIME HE CALLS ME! It's insane that I told him I wouldn't pick up the phone during the Packers game. What if he was in the hospital??? And I'm blowing my JOB problem out of proportion. After all, it was a stupid part-time job. I should be getting over it by now. NOBODY is suffering like he is...with the divorce and his ex. Nobody on the PLANET is suffering like him (I made the last line up). I'm a lousy parent because I don't support him 100% all the time. In fact, he is doing so well (so well????) IN SPITE of me, not because of me."

    When I told him we should cut this off because I am still not 100% back to normal and he is in a bad mood, he hung up.

    Wow. He even told me I should tell my therapist what I said about the Packers game and guaranteed me my therapist would say I was a horrible mother. I said she probably would say he was being abusive, but he said, incredulously, "ARE YOU SERIOUS?"

    I have three great kids. I can hardly believe I raised the two oldest boys....the one who left us and this one who is 35 and still thinks I should parent him like he's ten and who thinks *my* issues should not matter to me and that I should be there for him as a rock no matter what is going on in my life. He said he'd offered to be there for me but I won't talk to him about it. No, I won't. He wouldn't get it and I don't really feel like talking about it to my kids. There is nothing they can do. I *am* feeling better, but it's a work in progress. I liked my job and feel there was a grave injustice there. And, pardon me, I did want to watch the Packers game for some relief from life (although the game was hardly much relief...lol).

    Moving on, Son is also upset that a lot of times when he calls I say "I can't talk long." I should never say that. I should miss appointments, working out, my other kids and my husband to just listen to him and say the right things to make him feel better (because he gets ugly if I don't say the right things). The fact that I talk to him 10 times more than anyone else in my life doesn't matter because HE IS IN HELL.

    So what is the consensus? Am I a terrible mom? :sochildish:
  2. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Arrgh. Vent away.
    Obviously, he felt put-off by you and was offended. He can dish it out but he can't take it.
    I bet he'll call again when he needs something.
  3. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    He needs to get over himself.
  4. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    The consensus? He's 35 years old. While you are his mother, you are not his Mommy. He needs to grow up.

    L did this to me one time when she was 24 years old and called as we were driving to dinner with new friends in the car and wanted to cry to me that she had lost her job. I told her where we were and why I couldn't talk and that I would call back when we got home after dinner. At which time she wouldn't answer her phone. Then she wouldn't answer her phone for two days. The last time I spoke to her she told me that a major reason that I couldn't be her mother of the bride was that I had not taken that call that very moment and clearly I don't know how to be a mom.

    Your son and my daughter are spoiled delusional brats. He may be having a hard time with his marriage, but it's not as though YOU were married to either of them. You're and adult, he's an adult, and adults communicate rather than dump on each other. Friends make time when it's appropriate, and understand if something needs to wait a bit. Maybe he was insulted that it was the Packers game, and maybe you shouldn't have been so explicit - "I'm in the middle of dying my hair and I can't talk til I finish. I'll call you back." Lesson learned. But bad mother? He needs to get over it, and I hope you won't take his pity party too seriously.
  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I'm just more amazed than anything. You have no idea how much time I spend talking to him ad nauseum over his issues, but I do have a life too and other kids and a husband and obligations.

    I wonder if a 35 difficult child ever grows up. What the hello can I do for him from Wisconsin when he's in Missouri? Secretly, I'm glad he's far away. I couldn't deal with him near me...sad as that is. I wonder if he is narcissistic. My father definitely is and they are starting to believe that personality disorders run in the family.
    I like the idea of telling him, "Yes, I'm your mother. But I'm not longer your mommy. We're both adults and we need to relate to one another that way." He'll probably hang up, but I'm used to it.
  6. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Then I must be the worst mother in the world. Both of my daughters know not to call me when Dancing with the Stars is on. My husband knows it, too. LOL


    ETA: The more I thought about this the angrier I got. A mature, considerate 35-year-old man would have said, "Hi Mom, is this a good time to talk?". To which you could have replied, "No, not right now. How about if I call you back later."

    I wouldn't give it another thought. I like what JJJ said . . . he needs to get over himself.
  7. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Really, my friend, as one terrible Mother to another.....my phone ringer is off and messages are taken when I nap, when I go to bed for the night, when to H I feel like being left alone LOL and during special sports events. So sad. Too bad. I am available 90%+ of the time. That's enough. Your "baby" needs to do volunteer work so he doesn't have so much time focusing on himself and his needs. Hugs. DDD
  8. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    All conversations, no matter who they're with, should start like this: "Hi, is this a good time to talk?"
  9. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    Ummmm, NO....you are NOT a terrible mother. You are a person, an adult, who has every right to take time for herself to do whatever you want, even if it means watching a packers game. Your son is an overgrown adolescent who needs to get out of his own way and grow the hello up!!!

    If I'm watching one of the two shows I watch weekly, I don't answer my phone, unless it's the nursing home. I tell H and easy child to tell folks I'm either asleep or in the shower. And I don't feel guilty about it. difficult child once got mad at me because I couldn't drop everything at work and listen to her sob over the phone to me about how horrible she felt. All I said in response to her crying, sniffling and complaining was, "difficult child, did you have anything to eat today? Have you pooped yet this week? Did you take your medications? Are you expecting your period?" because in the weeks prior she was told that she was anemic, dehydrated and was only pooping every other week, was treated for yet another bladder infection, and used to always forget her medications and gets her period about every two weeks. Well, she hung up on me. Later that evening she came to the house and hugged me and said she was sorry for being so rude. She GETS it.

    Your overgrown adolescent doesn't and won't until you stop listening to him whine every time he calls. Let him lean on someone else for while, let him develop some healthy coping skills instead of ripping you apart because he feels bad about his predicament.

    I'm so angry with him for being so rotten and mean to you like that! I think if I were you, I would be screening my calls from him for a while. Hugs.
  10. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    I don't know if this might be a wonderful topic for the PE forum. I know that this is more like a "I'm not a "parent" in this situation/Would we take this from anyone else?" kind of thing, but the answers are REALLY good for all of us with fully grown children. Some might not see it there. Should we start a new one there, or should we move it, or just leave it be?
  11. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I hate to say this about my own child, but I LOL'd at this suggestion. Volunteer? As in help somebody else he doesn't know????? Um, not in this lifetime!

    He does have to much time on his hands. He doesn't have any friends in Missouri and has alienated his siblings and father and refuses any suggestions about how to maybe meet people. So there's only me, but that's not my fault. Can't even tell him to get a dog for a companion as he hates animals.

    Another annoying thing he does is to call me ten times in a row if he thinks I'm deliberately not answering his calls (and sometimes he's right!) :)
  12. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Hmmmmmmm, maybe this attitude that he is the ONLY important thing/person in the world could be why he has no friends in Missouri, and no wife and no siblings and no father to turn to?

    Of course that cannot be it. I am SURE that the only reason he doesn't have friends is because everyone is jealous of how wonderful he is and they just want to tear him down, that his wife was just a gold digger who is a liar and his siblngs and father? Well they are just abusive because they don't realize that he should be more important to them than anything else in the world, but only make 'demands' on him of what little he wants to give/share and not call except when HE wants to talk to them and it is convenient for HIM.

    This boy is not a man. He needs to learn some respect and in my opinion you need to stop taking his calls. Write a letter telling him that until he can learn to RESPECT you as an adult and a person, and to show you that respect, then you will not be answering his calls unless it fits with YOUR schedule and YOUR convenience. He did not care enough about you to insist that you were a part of his married life and to insist that his child be allowed to build a relationship with you, but you should drop everything to listen to him whine about losing this child THAT YOU HAVE BARELY EVEN BEEN ALLOWED TO SEE, MUCH LESS SPEAK TO?? I don't think so.

    Until he gets some therapy he can write to you or email you and you will read it at YOUR convenience. Other than that, he can call and if it is a good time you will answer. I think this man-child needs serious therapy He shouldn't have custody or unsupervised visitation most likely until he gets his anger under control, in my opinion. If he rages to you on the phone and all you have done is not listen or not agreed with him, what is he going to do to a small child who wants what he wants when he wants it and can be EXPECTED to be demanding simply because kids are demanding. There is NO way that your son has enough patience or self control to not get overly angry and abusive at least verbally to his child, and in my opinion that is seriously unhealthy. I really wish and hope that the courts insist he either takes some parenting classes and gets some anger management or he doesn't get anything but supervised visitation wtih his son.

    The way your son treats you really really scares me. He very much reminds me of gfgbro. The last rage gfgbro had at us was at husband and the kids. Bro refused to let husband shut the car door and drive away because gfgbro insisted that he had the RIGHT, the absolute RIGHT, to speak his mind to them and tell them what he thought. He somehow figures that if he wants to rage, others MUST listen or they are infringing on his rights. Your son expresses pretty much the same things, and if you were closer I am willing to bet that the rage would turn physical. I actually wonder if domestic violence is part of the reason for the divorce. If he treats his MOTHER this way, how did he treat his wife and child? You don't have to like or love her, and she could be a horrible person, but his behavior is still over the top and out of bounds.

    I am SOOO SORRY you have to deal with it. He is totally wrong and you are NOT a bad mother in any way. You raised him, you are no longer responsible for him. You don't have to wipe his tushie or nose, or fix his dinner, or help with his homework any more. You have children who are still children, THEY are your priority and so is your own life because you are a person, not just his mommy. It is time for him to stop trying to reattach this umbilical cord. If he had his wife, he wouldn't want much to do with you, would he? I bet he wanted his wife to be his mommy n additiont o everything else, and now that she isnt' there, he wants to reconnect the umbilical cord and make YOU fix his world so he won't have to face it and take some ownership of the mess that he has created for himself.

    Love him enough to make him stand on his own two feet. THAT is what a good mom does, and in my opinion you are a GREAT mom. He is wrong, out of line, difficult child and selfish and acting like an entitled brat.

    Just because the phone rings does NOT mean you must answer it. It is an invitation into your home and you do NOT have to answer or open that door unless it is a good time for YOU. If it is an emergency or he is in the hospital? He can leave a message and you will call him back. Before cell phones people OFTEN had to wait until we were home and it was a good time. The world didn't end just because a ringing phone wasn't answered or the parent of an adult couldn't get to the phone every minute of every day, Know what I mean??
  13. Mattsmom277

    Mattsmom277 Active Member

    My Matt is just shy of his 20th birthday. Never mind waiting for guidelines for being mom to a now adult at age 35, I've had firm stuff happening since he moved. There are certain things that I will drop anything, regardless of importance, over. Physical injury, life altering occasion type moments. I dropped everything when he called for advice when he was the only manager in on a weekend and an elderly employee knocked herself out cold (turned out to have major swelling on brain, nearly died). I dropped it all when he called because he had scary medical news. Otherwise, I often ask if he can call me back if I'm in the middle of dinner or watching a movie. Yes, even when I can easily pause the movie with the touch of a button. If I"m watching alone, I pause and chat. If I'm watching as a family, he gets to call me back. I would lose it if he freaked out for me having things going on that make it not always the best time for a call. Your son is definitely self centered. I say chalk this type of thing to "typical difficult child" and don't let it phase you one wit.
  14. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Susie, as usual you hit the nail on the head. Yes, there was some roughness in the marriage and throughout his life. He isnt' a hitter though. He has shoved and thrown things and is verbally aggressive...so far. If he had hit his child, his ex would have filed for custody. She wants it. That doesn't mean its a good thing when his son hears him yelling at me on the phone. His language gets ugly too when he's mad. Anger management would most certainly be great, but he claims there is no place he can go for therapy that he can afford. He makes too much for the low cost places but doesn't have enough for a private therapist. Who knows? Not my problem.

    I like your letter idea and I think I'm going to write one. I really have tried to help him. I know he is mentally ill and is having a hard time being alone, but his ex, although not a nice lady, did not leave him for nothing. I always did get why she left him, even if she is also no prize. My poor grandson really has two bad parents and I hope his new stepfather is a good guy. From what I've heard about him, he seems to be.

    Susie, you know what? If I think about how he didn't bother to make sure my grandson could know me when they all lived in Chicago, I'd probably hang up on HIM. I'm glad you brought it up...lol. I'm sure if I brought it up to him he'd hang up, but I'm so used to that, it doesn't bother me all that much. I just posted the conversation because it is so bizarre and I do feel a little guilty that I raised him and he never grew up and has all the manners of a hungry dog waiting for dinner. (That's an insult to my dogs, by the way).

    I don't answer the phone when he calls a lot of the time. Bless caller ID! Then he calls ten times in a row, but I just let it go. I'd say 80% of the time we talk, he is rational. It's the other 20% that makes me wonder how he got this way. All I can think of is genetics. I raised all my kids the same and the youngest three have compassion and empathy, including my Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) son...he is VERY loving. But the 35 year old thinks he is always right. He will never apologize to me. He thinks that I am in the wrong, that it was horrible to put his love life or possible complaints about his ex or his loneliness on hold for two hours to watch my favorite team's playoff game. The thing is, before his divorce, NOBODY could talk to him on the phone if ANY of his favorite teams were on and he likes to watch ALL sports.

    I don't know what I'd do if I didn't have this place to vent, Know what I mean?? I can tell my hub and he rolls his eyes and spouts off about this grown up child a little. Then Jumper and Sonic hear and Sonic shakes his head and Jumper rolls her eyes like her father did and says, "He's nuts." They can hear him yelling over my cell phone. Jumper says, "Why do you even talk to him?" just like you said. All I can answer is, he's my child and I do love him, but I can only take him in very small doses and he isn't a very nice person. Narcissism...just like my dad. They are the center of their worlds and expect to be the center of everyone else's. My father also shoves, throws things and swears/yells when he gets mad. I limit my talking time to him too. He hasn't mellowed now that he is 88...lol! Thanks to all for listening. Any other thoughts welcome. This kid always takes me by surprise.
  15. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    MWM - my family does not call after 9 PM or before 8 AM unless there was a pre-arranged plan or there is an emergency. I'm still working on husband's family. Having to drop everything no matter what is rude - to YOU.

    Now that said - if I have to call someone and I feel it is super-urgent, I will state up front - "I'm sorry but I consider this an emergency." Simple and gets the point across.
  16. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    MWM-My children know not to bother me during the Packers or the Wolverines playing! by the way, sorry for the Packer loss; as much as I love the Packers, San Fran was the better team.
  17. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    We are happy Atlanta Falcons fans tonight.

    Just saying . . .

  18. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    Great minds think alike, Susiestar. That's what I thought.
  19. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    He acts very personable in a group and could easily make friends, but it takes work, you know? Mommy can't make playdates. I wish I were kidding, but I'm not.

    If he could keep the friends he made, I don't know. He admits to being mean to a really nice kid who was his best friend in high school. He has always had these issues and therapy didn't help him one bit because I started him in therapy at age eight.

    Seriously, they say adopted kids are the screwed up kids. Not in my family. I mean, one is, but the other three are the best kids on earth. It's my bio. kid.
  20. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    I'd be telling him to man up and get over himself. I'd also be doing a lot of hanging up on him.

    I get that he is going through a lot emotionally right now and that can be rough when you feel alone in the world. But that doesn't mean he gets to keep the umbilical cord wrapped around your neck either.

    Or you could start charging him therapist rates. LOL That might make him stop and think about how often he "needs" to talk to you.