WOW! A TOTAL Refusal of Boundaries!

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by susiestar, Dec 14, 2010.

  1. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I am in shock right now. Sheer, undiluted amazement over the depth and breadth of my mother's mental illness and inappropriate behavior!

    She called husband while he was working at the campus bookstore (a temp position this week). He answered because he had a few minutes and she has gone so nuts in the last couple of months when her calls are not answered immediately. He answered to try to avoid drama.

    Instead of asking US what our plans are for xmas and thank you's birthday she called my inlaws!! She did not even TRY to call husband or I! husband told her he does not yet know his choir schedule for the holiday masses, so he offered to call her after he knows.

    SHE ASKED FOR THE NAME OF THE CHOIR DIRECTOR!! His shocked silence apparently sent SOME signal that this is completely inappropriate because she backpedalled then. She was all huffy over it and said she would set up "something" with the grandkids only (meaning that gfgbro and his "ex" will insist on staying) and then will have a separate time for husband and I and gfgbro and his "ex".

    The way she said that makes it even clearer to us that gfgbro and his certifiably crazy addicted "ex" are a couple again. Makes me even happier to NOT have contact with them because she and he bring out the worst in each other - and they are each pretty awful on their own.

    I am just appalled and somewhat embarrassed that my mother called my mother in law about holiday plans. I am sure my mother in law and father in law will understand - they have never really liked gfgbro or his ex, and in the last 3-4 years have been VERY concerned about gfgbro's effects on the kids. They also have asked enough questions about my mother that lets us know that they recognize how ill she is - mentally that is.

    I just had a feeling today that she was going to pull some stunt or other - some effort to manipulate us was in the works. My radar for her craziness seems very accurate lately. I didn't give in to her pressure last month about the trip to Dallas, and then I didn't give in to her pressure delivered via pressure on Wiz. Instead I let Wiz know "the rest of the story", aka the things that neither my mother nor gfgbro would ever tell anyone - and Wiz was understanding and accepting of the need to keep gfgbro away from us.

    My refusal to give in is why she called husband and not me. I am getting the "silent treatment" from her - phone calls not returned, emails read and not replied to, etc... She thinks husband will pressure me to do what she wants and she is off her rocker to think it. He would have been happy if we had not seen gfgbro EVER in the last decade as he really does NOT like my bro. husband is not mean or rude to him, they just have nothing in common as husband is not rabidly judgemental about anyone and gfgbro is both incredibly judgemental in a reverse snobbery way AND is a "vortex of swirling negativity" to put it mildly.

    I will likely have to call my parents in a day or two. I don't really know what to say - I am flabbergasted at her nerve and complete inappropriate lack of respect for us as adults, parents, and a family in our own right.

    I am also ******. the manipulation is really really old. I am too angry right now to even attempt to speak to her - it would likely result in us not speaking for a LONG time because I would say some home truths that would accomplish exactly nothing in the long run.

    Then there is the little girl inside me who is hurt and crying because she isn't worth anything to her mother unless she is around her brother. I know it isn't me, that it is her, but still I wonder what is lacking in me or is so bad inside me that my own mother only cares about me if I am around my brother and tolerating his abuse of not just me but my husband and kids also. I don't think I am such a horrible person that I only have value if my brother is there. Apparently that isn't what mymother thinks.

    The other night Jessie asked me if I knew why my mother only wanted to spend time with me when gfgbro was there, and why she couldn't enjoy me for who I am separate from him. She wondered how long it would be before my mom would only see her when her brothers are around.

    I didn't have an answer for her other than to tell her that Gma has her own problems and it isn't her fault that her Gma only wants to take the boys to do things. We first noticed this when Jess was about 3 or 4, but it has gotten a LOT worse. Each of the boys has been on a couple of trips with my mom, but Jess has NEVER been invited - or even had my mother bring up the IDEA of a trip with her.
    Heck, my mom couldn't even find a couple of hours to spend with Jess unless one of the boys or else my niece is there. My mom sure has had a LOT of opportunities to spend time 1:1 with the boys and my niece though. NOTHING is important enough to get in the way of that, or important enough to get my mom to spend more than 2-3 hours with just Jess. It has always been this way, not just since Jess got sick.

    Apparently it is pronounced enough that even Wiz has noticed because he brought it up to me a couple of weeks ago.

    Maybe not wanting to be with Jess or I is because we look a lot like my mom and she cannot stand herself? I feel like I am grasping at straws, but it is the only thing I can come up with to explain this. My niece does NOT look like Jess and I other than in hair color. We look like we are clones of my mother in many ways.

    Thanks for reading all of this. I am not great company lately so have not posted as much as usual.
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2010
  2. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    ((((hugs))))) Susie

    Honestly? Maybe the time has come for your mother to hear what you have to say. Sure it may not make any difference to anyone except that you got to say it. And who knows, it may actually have an effect.

    Truly. You're justified in giving her an enormous piece of your mind. This was WAY over the top. omg This was so MY mom that my mouth dropped open.
  3. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Okay, YOU WIN! I thought my mother in law was nutso with no regard for the rights or boundaries of others, but your momma takes the cake. I'm so sorry, Susie!! And FWIW, you are FINE company and no one minds if you're grumpy because of all that crapola. Who wouldn't be?

  4. katya02

    katya02 Solace

    The manipulation, controlling, and rejection of selected grandchildren while fawning on others is very familiar to me. My mother did/was all these things and when we were back in Ontario for two years she escalated to being scary. It was my daughter she fawned over, and she rejected my three boys - wouldn't sit beside them at a movie, wouldn't have her photo taken with them (in a family group) on Mother's Day, etc. She also became deluded that she had parental rights to my daughter. I found that the only solution was to refuse her contact with ANY of the kids as long as she had this attitude (it didn't change in the time before we moved back to PA). She and I basically stopped talking for eight months as well. There was nothing else that got through to her
    that I was serious about refusing to allow her to abuse my kids.

    Do I understand you correctly when I take it that your mother is setting something up to have your kids over, without you? If so, why would you put them in that situation, especially when she will have gfgbro there? Besides the risk to your kids, it gives her permission (power, really) to split you and your kids up and refuse to acknowledge you as a family. If your kids aren't to be around gfgbro and you know she has gfgbro over when your kids are there, then your kids don't go.

    I don't know about having the big verbal confrontation. It can be done, but she'll only hear what she wants to hear. It doesn't help to confront someone like this, I don't think. They are fixed in their ideas; they may enjoy the verbal battle and the chance to get in some painful digs at you; and you won't change their minds one bit. You may - maybe - alter their behavior by altering yours. Similar to dealing with juvenile difficult children who are in a toxic mode, rather than endlessly discussing and getting derailed, it's often more productive to say something short, once, along the lines of 'When you do X, that is unacceptable to me. Therefore I will/won't do Y." And stop talking, and do it, and don't be drawn into discussions about it. The point isn't to change her behavior but to make clear what is unacceptable to you.

    My mother had spent decades exhibiting horrible toxic and abusive behavior to all of us (my sibs and I), and no one thought she could/would change. When we all withdrew at one point, for our own individual reasons, she waited a few years and then changed her behavior. Granted, it was only enough, and for long enough, to be permitted to get closer to us again. As soon as she gets close she gets abusive; that's her pattern. I simply withdraw whenever the abuse starts, let her alone for some months, and at some point let her re-establish a courteously distant level of contact. But I've never asked my kids to subject
    themselves to her since our time in Ontario.

    For you - I know it's so hard when it's your mother who plays these games with you, but this is what she does. You have to grieve for the loss of the relationship you WANT to have, but accept the reality of what is. It's frustrating; it's painful; it's disappointing. But I've found that, for me, accepting and having whatever limited relationship is possible is better than continuing to hope and try for something that isn't there and will never be.

    {{{hugs}}}, Susie. I'm sorry.
  5. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    I don't even know what to
  6. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    Yeah...all I can say is wow! You've probably discussed this before, but has mom been evaluation'd? It does sound like she's fairly manic. Holidays bring out the mania. We are experiencing it with Missy, right now. At least husband and in-laws understand and it's not reflective of you. Hugs!
  7. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    Awww, I had found myself wondering about you when I was work today. *hugs* dearie. I know you'll get through this.
  8. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Now that I"m over my initial shock that someone else happens to have a mom exactly like mine...................

    Katya put it beautifully.
  9. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Susiestar, I remember your other notes and how happy I was that you stood strong.
    You have no choice but to expect a long, drawn-out period of no communication. She is going to play this for all it's worth and you will not give in. These are YOUR kids and she's messing with-YOUR family. (Not to mention the choir director.)
    I understand feeling out of control and getting anxious about it all, but honestly, I'd suggest AA or some other group that can help you with-detachment. You do NOT have to call your parents. At all. I beg to differ with-you when you state that you have to.
    Since she went around you, she has created her own rules, which you do not have to follow.

    Keep your chin up. Do whatever you want for Christmas. You've earned the right to be an independent adult.
  10. Star*

    Star* call 911

    Susie* -

    It is .......what it is.........and Katya gave you such wonderful insight (thank you so much for sharing K). I'm not sure which one of you nees a hug more. Terry J also has a very profound and awesome statement - YOU EARNED THE RIGHT TO BE AN INDEPENDANT ADULT. I love that - get in that mindset. If you truly do? I think a lot of these issues with your Mom will become non-issues and you'll be able to look at them differenlty. May take some practice, but youre a tough woman. Seems you're just going to have to be tough a little longer.

    Many Hugs dear - I'm really so sorry for your situation. You deserve peace.

  11. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

    Susie, I'm so sorry. Your mother is a piece of work.

    I don't think I would play her game anymore. I agree with Katya (thank you for sharing, Katya). No amount of talking is going to change a thing. Withdrawing from her speaks volumes, however.

    My mom does the favorites thing, too. It's been a big issue of late - too long and too tired to go into it. But, I understand. My daughter is hurt by it and doesn't understand and I do my best to explain something that I don't really understand myself. I know from past experience that talking doesn't change a thing. It's only been when I pull back that she seems to get it. If you're comfortable enough with your in-laws, I would talk to them about your mother calling them; let them know you are aware and are sorry that she involved them, then suggest that they might want to tell your mother (should she do this again) that she should be discussing this with you, not them.

    I have to wonder, though, if your mom has a need to be needed. GFGbro obviously "needs" her. You don't. Maybe she's threatened by that. Doesn't excuse her behavior in the slightest. Just thinking out loud.
  12. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Susie, my mother has used the threat of calling others to embaress me and stir up koi as a threat for years. That's exactly how I ended up having to get an attny to fight for custody for my own child when it wasn't even a cps or other parent wanting custody issue. Just like with our kids/difficult children- it works aas long as we let it. Giving into it only reinforces to them that it works. If that method quits working, they will try another. And they will raise the stakes many times before giving up. And they'll accuse of us being a control freak any time the method to control and manipulate us doesn't work. I look for my mother to be calling family and Department of Juvenile Justice and courts people here to stir up koi again this coming year, if she hasn't started already.
  13. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Susie... Just hugs. And lots of them.
  14. SearchingForRainbows

    SearchingForRainbows Active Member


    Although my mother has never been officially diagnosed (at least that I know of), I can relate to what it is like having a mentally ill mother - It rots!!! You've already been given excellent advice and I can't think of anything else to add. Just want to let you know I'm thinking of you... Hugs... SFR