A talk with my mom

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by flutterbee, Dec 4, 2008.

  1. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    I called my mom tonight - we talk every night. I hadn't had a chance to talk to her much since I got back from my grandmother's.

    She didn't really ask about my stay. I volunteered that it was nice to get away and just have a break. I then told her about the visit.

    My grandmother is a difficult child in her own right. She hangs onto things forever. She makes mountains out of molehills and she's always the one being wronged and she's always right. She's done some pretty nasty, hateful, vindictive things to my mother (while my parents were still married, no less). She's done some pretty spiteful things to me. She's done these things because she always gotten away with it. No one in the family would stand up to her. It's kind of this sick co-dependency thing between a bunch of unhealthy family members. When she pulled it with me, I walked away. I had no contact with her for years and when I did it was on my terms. In short, she's a drama junkie and she creates it at every opportunity.

    I told my mom how my grandmother brought up the T issue (Wynter's dad). She does almost every time I talk to her and I'm so tired of it. Like all of a sudden he's going to out of the blue try to contact Wynter. It's been 10 years since he's taken an interest in Wynter. My grandmother asked if I thought about having Wynter write him a letter. Ummm....NO. Why would I possibly do that? It would just get her hopes up and then she would be crushed. She then asked if she could write him a letter, I asked her, why does she do this. I told her that I don't dwell on these things. I don't let it eat me up because if I do, then it's going to eat up Wynter. I told her she needs to let it go and that I really don't want to talk about it again.

    There were a couple of things like that. She's been hanging on to a fight with her daughter in law (my uncle's wife) for 4 years now. She's kept the letter her daughter in law sent to her in the envelope since then. She pulled it out and wanted me to read it. I *know* she wanted me to say, oh daughter in law is horrible, blah, blah, blah. But, I read the letter (under durress) and couldn't say that. It wasn't terrible. The timing was atrocious because daughter in law chose to do this as my grandfather was dying and she should have waited. That was wrong, no if's, and's, or but's. But, that's not the issue my grandmother has - that's just an aside for her. And I didn't tell my grandmother what she wanted to hear. I told her exactly what I thought. If she didn't want to know, she shouldn't have asked.

    And I told these things to my mom. I told her that I know it bothers her that I have a relationship with my grandmother, but that I don't pull any punches. That I don't play her games the way my father and his brothers do. And because of that, I'm able to have a mostly pleasant relationship with her - except for a few things that come up here and there that I just redirect or simply say I'm not doing this.

    I really think that was all my mom needed to hear. I think maybe she felt a bit betrayed. Maybe a bit miffed that I would have this relationship after the stuff she pulled even with me. But, I told her that this is on my terms. That my grandmother knows that I don't pull any punches, that I don't take her carp and that I'm not afraid to speak my mind when she's railing about some perceived injustice.

    I joked with my mom....told her that yeah, it was nice to get away, but there was fun and games, too (meaning the above mentioned cases and a couple of others.) :tongue:

    I guess I'm just getting my thoughts out. Since I was able to calm my mind a bit while I was away, I've been able to sort through things in my head.

    Of course, now though, I'm rambling. But, that's ok, too. :D
  2. Jena

    Jena New Member


    I"m glad you took the trip regardless of what your Mother said prior to it, you needed it you sound alot better. Time away is always a good and healthy thing.

    You may be right, Mom's are strange creatures (when they get older) not us, ofcourse lol, not yet at least. Some little hint of that could def. of presented the issue with it all in regards to you going to your grandmother's for some down time.

    I'm glad you handled it all, and spoke to your mother as well. Learning how to handle certain family relationships is always key for survival and also so that you can enjoy whatever that person has to offer without becoming part of what it is they do or don't do.

    Glad you got some time. So, i'm guessing kids were ok while you were gone, no major upheavals i hope.

  3. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Glad you were able to get away and clear your head. Also glad you were able to clear up things with your Mom. (although she may need reassurance in the future)

    My parents have been divorced since before I was born.....so let's see about 46 years. And my Mom still gets miffed that the boys of the family have a relationship with my Dad and that I'll talk to him. sigh No, I don't go out of my way to make a relationship with him. But I'm not going to be mean and not talk to my own father either. I've learned to accept him for the person he is. After all these years, my Mom still can't manage to do that. lol But then she's a piece of work herself.
  4. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Sometimes I think our parents forget that we are grown up people who have relationships with other family members that are SEPARATE from THEIR relationship with them. They are still so enmeshed with us as offspring they have a hard time seeing us as freestanding individuals. And maybe that's why they can't handle the thought of us having a relationship with someone they've written off?
  5. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    As the granddaughter, you are in a different place to be able to detach from grandma's behavior. It is easier to tell her that you will not put up with it. Your mom lived in a different time with her mother in law. She had to deal with her as the mother to her husband. mother in law's can have more power than one can imagine over their children.

    The bringing up of T is just something to talk about. She wants to have something to share with you and is curious about your plans in that area. Just keep letting her know that you are done with that subject and would like to talk about something else.

    Maybe ask her what your dad was like growing up. Does she have stories to share that you can put into a memories book for Wynter?

    I am glad you enjoyed your mini vacation. Sounds like you handled things well with grandma.
  6. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    Wynter, it's a good idea to have relationships with whomever you are comfortable and able to set limits with.

    My folks divorced when much older. (I was married with difficult child already) My dad chose to have no relationship with us since none of the 5 kids took sides. It didn't help that he was very difficult and vindictive. Many years later when dad had his first and second stroke, he contacted us. I offered him a place to recover. He stayed 3 yrs until his death in our home. My mom was majorly miffed (she is an over the top emotional drama queen). She yelled and cried on the phone. Finally, it got pushed too far. I told her I answer to no one but my God, My husband and myself and not necessarily in that order. I have never looked back. Once I set that limit she tolerated it. Now I am in the process of caring for mom. She didn't get that we don't get to pick our family and we have choices to interact with them or not. I am at peace with my course of action in terms of having a relationship and taking some responsibility for elderly family.

    Anyhow, as long as the relationship with grandmother is on terms you are comfortable with, it's good. I think it was very wise to talk and reassure your mom that being involved with one doesn't mean you are choosing sides. Your mom is always your mom. Good for both of you for talking it out instead of harboring anger or hurt.
  7. mrscatinthehat

    mrscatinthehat Seussical

    I do have to wonder if our families are linked cosmically somehow. Though my father's mother (it's easier to call her that most days) has passed away my relationship with her was a strange one. She could find the strangest things to go on about. The biggest problem being she and my mom didn't get along. After dad passed away this became such a major thing that the whole family is wonky about everything now.

    I have kept in contact with almost everyone (there is one aunt that well.......) and when mom got upset about it I had to let her know that I didnt' pick sides. It wasn't a side thing. And that truthfully I thought everyone had a hand in the situation.

    Glad you could come to some sort of understanding with your mom.

  8. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    Ya know, I never even considered that your mom might be jealous that you were going to her mother's, but it really does make sense. Not just the issues of what grandma has done in the past, but the fact you went to her rather than your own mother. I know why you couldn't do that and I totally understand but maybe your mom doesn't. No matter, I'm glad you went. I'm glad you had very clear boundaries and that it went well.

    Any chance you could make this a monthly thing? I think the break would do you so much good. You really sound like you're in a much better place today.

    And, just cause, HUGSSSSSSSS
  9. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    Good for you for sticking to your feelings and views! It is hard when your Mom is whining and expecting you, maybe demanding that you do as she *feels*.
    Sounds kind of like my mother in law.
    When I cut off my Dad no-one could understand. Kind of like Wynter's Dad. It would be worse to try and bother. More pain in the long run, when it was meant to be for us to be in touch it happened. On my terms, maybe Wynter will gain some of your strength and be able to do as she needs when she is older. Despite what people will inevitably say regarding her Father.
    I had to hear it for so long, "Just contact him, why don't you write him"
    I had not idea where he was from 5 to 13... and then during my 20's again.
    Some family we put up with by choice.
    Some family, it is just better to be away from. It is better for us mentally and emotionally. For our souls.

    I think you are a very smart woman, you have to protect yourself and yet be around the people that you can actually have a bit of a good time with.
    And heck the respite can't hurt!
  10. Star*

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

    I was worried that maybe you would take your Mom's words to heart and not go to your Grandmothers, but I too (like MB) NEVER considered that there may be jealousy involved or miffed feelings. It makes MUCH more sense now that it's explained.

    Very glad that you got to spend the time with your Grandma. my xmil was a drama junkie until the day she was run over by her son with her own van - and to honor her lifelong wishes of DON'T YOU SAY ANYTHING TO THE COPS - her son is still free and the entire family knows what happened.

    The first time I set boundaries with her - she had svcked me into an argument and I stopped mid yell, turned around and said "You don't own me anymore." and let her finish ranting then told her to leave my home and not return. Dude saw her van in the driveway and hid in the woods until she left.

    Sounds like you regrouped and are going to handle the holidays very very well.

  11. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    To be honest, while it was nice to get away, I couldn't handle once a month with my grandmother.

    She told me, while I was there, that my dad has cancer. I learned a long time ago to take everything she says with a grain of salt. She said it was on his head. ON his head? Yeah, he had a lump and he asked her to look at it, said it was starting to itch and she told him that she thinks it's cancer. Then she said he can't get into the surgeon until Jan 14. I asked if it was a melanoma. "I hope so", in that voice that is supposed to elicit worry and concern.

    Knowing my grandmother, I knew to think twice. Knowing my dad, he wouldn't miss an opportunity to get the attention and I would have known about this from my mom who would have heard it from my brother - well, sister in law actually.

    So, I sent an email to my dad last night. He said it's no big deal. He sees a dermatologist (not a surgeon) on Jan 14 and that it's getting smaller and is now the size of a pencil eraser.

    Drama junkie. :rolleyes:
  12. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    Ah, well, at least you got a break. Okay, once a month is too much, but you know you have a spot you can go to breath, Wynter discovered you would come back, your mom saw she still has her daughter, the house didn't fall apart, so use grandma's when you need it. I'm glad you found a place that gives you a little respite. That's the important thing.