I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?

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jennsc85

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I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?
« on: October 12, 2017, 07:42:54 PM »
You guys are saints for putting up with my endless drivel about dealing with my ridiculous mother. This is the only place I feel safe in truly letting all of my feelings out about my situations with her.

Yesterday she asked me to do something for her. I told her I wasn't able to because I wasn't feeling well. I stayed home from work yesterday, so I figured I'd tell the truth. She demands to know exactly what's wrong with me. I give her an inch and she takes two miles. It's my fault for allowing it, but in the moment I feel compelled to tell her. It just all comes out. I've gotten better about this so I'm not sure what happened yesterday, but it is what it is.

So today I pick her up from an appointment (that's how all my situations seem to start, isn't it?) She starts in on me about my health issues. I don't think she's actually concerned about me as much as she likes to have something to focus on. She spent three hours last night Googling what I told her was going on with me. She relayed the abridged version of her "research" when I picked her up. She goes from sounding nice and caring to getting all ragey on me because I'm not "listening" to her. It ended with her telling me that she is going to call around to different doctor's offices until she finds the right one and pretend to be me in order to get my information and set up appointments for me. That's weird, isn't it?

So, that's over. Then she tells me that on her way home she needs me to stop by some place for her to send a fax.

I don't know if this is a PD parent thing or just something unique to my mother but literally EVERYTHING that she does takes FOREVER and it's always someone/something else's fault. A "quick trip" into the grocery store to get a bunch of bananas that she promises will only take two minutes turns into a 30 minute ordeal because she also saw such and such on sale and she couldn't go through the quick scan because blah blah blah and then there was a long line and who would have thought? and the cashier was rude so she had to complain to customer service, and can you believe...

This is what happens nearly everywhere that's supposed to be "quick."  :wacko:

Today it was sending a fax. She's in the place for over 15 minutes when I call her and ask what's going on. OH, the fax machine was broken so they're sending it on their personal fax and it's actually 8 pages instead of 4 and she had NO IDEA it would take this long. She was only trying to save me time from sending me out to do it myself... whatever.

I tell her that I need to get my daughter at school and that the traffic gets bad around this time. If I don't get my daughter by a certain time, I have to pay a late fee and plus it feels really inconsiderate! My mother tells me that she's already paid for the fax and that it's very slow sending.

Another 5 minutes pass. I call her and say that she needs to just leave the fax because I need to leave RIGHT at that moment. I raised my voice when I said this.

She comes out to the car several minutes later crying. She says that everyone in the store heard me "abusing" her over the phone and it was very embarrassing (for me! not for her... they felt sorry for her, she said).

She continues on about how she was profusely apologizing to me over the phone but I was yelling over her about needing to leave and threatening to leave her and she cannot believe how I treat her. It's the same old stuff she always says. Why didn't she have more children. I deserve all the health issues that I have. God will punish me. She can't believe how hateful I am. She says I'm a sociopath. She reads the clinical definition of a sociopath off her phone and then says "CHECK!" after everything that she believes describes me. She said "fucking sociopath!!!" and slammed the car door when she got out. I stayed silent through all of this.

She sent me this barrage of texts about how abusive I am towards her, and I don't know why but it always gets me when she says that. It makes me question everything I've said and done. I was so tempted to text her and say "Perhaps you should find someone who isn't emotionally abusive to take you to your surgery appointment in two weeks?" But I realized silence was probably better than saying something snarky that would feel good in the moment and that she could probably use against me in some way.

I feel so defeated by her.

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moglow

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Re: I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?
« Reply #1 on: October 12, 2017, 08:05:29 PM »
Because I've had that kind of day (reinforced with a health tot of sweet tea vodka), my inner Jennsc says very distinctly "Oh hell no! Send the text. What can she possibly do or say at this point that she hasn't already?" Then turn the phone off or block her damn texts altogether. Sometimes we get what we've paid for - and Lord knows you've been making down payments for this long enough.

My guess: This is a doomed if you do, doomed if you don't situation. If you respond by standing up for yourself and with refusal to be her doormat anymore, you're "abusive." If you say nothing, you'll be just as bad, plus you'll turn it around on yourself once again as if you've done something wrong.

Guilt and obligation run deep and are hard masters. Only you can decide when enough's enough, when it's time for you to step back and let her sleep in the bed she's made for herself. Me? I wouldn't get into a car with someone I'd "checked off" as a sociopath, and I doubt I'd let her forget that for a while. Maybe she needs to be reminded that you both have choices here, and you have repeatedly stepped up regardless of how badly you've been treated.

It's neither abusive nor punishment if you take a large step back from the steam roller she's running here. Sometimes self preservation needs to take priority.

But that's just me.
« Last Edit: October 12, 2017, 08:07:09 PM by moglow »
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moglow

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Re: I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?
« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2017, 08:33:14 PM »
Oh, and when she comes back with "I was mad when I said that! Now (enter excuse here)" you can reasonably respond with, "I know, but now *I'm* mad so the answer is still no. You need to arrange transportation with someone who isn't abusive."
“Nothing exposes our true self more than how we treat each other in the home.”  ~ Joseph B. Wirthlin

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practical

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Re: I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2017, 09:43:47 PM »
I'm with Moglow, I would send the text and then block her texts and phone calls, only I would add "I'm no longer available" or make that the text "I'm no longer available to drive you for your surgery or any other errants/appointments. I also forbid you to get involved in any of my affairs, this especially means trying to impersonate me to doctors." At some point enough is enough, she is way over the line with her behavior, I mean all of it!

You weren't abusive, you raised your voice in the last feeble attempt to be heard after all her "reasons" of why her darn fax was more important than you being on time for your daughter. Your daughter is a child, she isn't, the fax can wait, your daughter shouldn't have to and neither should you.

As for the the comment you are the sociopath, please read this (and I apologize if I have given you this link before), it is exactly what your M is doing: http://shrink4men.com/2011/01/19/presto-change-o-darvo-deny-attack-and-reverse-victim-and-offender/

As for her googling your health issue, lecturing you and then coming up with the grand plan to impersonate you while calling doctors to find you the "right one", it is beyond creepy and a huge boundary violation. I don't care how much she yells and screams "But, but, but I'm only doing it out of concern for you." - she isn't, she is using it to run over all your boundaries and insert herself even more into your life. And as for why you spilled the beans yesterday, because you weren't feeling well, and holding up boundaries is hard on a good day, never mind on a bad day.

It's neither abusive nor punishment if you take a large step back from the steam roller she's running here. Sometimes self preservation needs to take priority.
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“If I’m not towards myself, who is towards myself? And when I’m only towards myself, what am I? And if not now, when?” (Rabbi Hillel)

"I can forgive, but I cannot afford to forget." (Moglow)

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all4peace

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Re: I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?
« Reply #4 on: October 12, 2017, 10:07:10 PM »
For the sake of her "mental health," please remove your abusive self (tongue in cheek) from her constant presence. It will be good for her. It would be terrible to force her to continue to suffer this abuse (sarcasm font needed)

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WomanInterrupted

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Re: I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2017, 12:56:26 AM »
I'm with Moglow - send it!   :righton:

You're putting her on notice - if she thinks you're being abusive, she needs to find somebody else.

From now on, I'd use that as my stock answer to ALL demands and "requests" she makes.   8-)

She doesn't like your boundaries and the New You, who *sees* what's really going on and is determined to crush the life out of any of that newfound independence, while not only stomping on your boundaries, but obliterating them to dust while she dances on them.   >:(

Didi would often want to "stop at the store" - and we'd be in Walgreens for 4 hours, looking at the same stuff, over and over.  If I said anything about needing to leave, she'd bark, "Don't RUSH me!" in an imperious tone and add at least another half hour, to teach me who was in charge.   :roll:

This was a constant theme throughout her life - not just with me.  With unNPD Ray and people she was paying to drive her to and from work - she treated them ALL like that.

My solution was NO visits to any stores unless she cleared it with me ahead of time - which she wouldn't because I might say no.

So I said, "I can't do that.  I told you - you need to make sure I don't have to be anywhere and ask ahead of time."

She'd pout and I'd ignore her and pretend everything was LOVELY!   :evil2:

One time, the frail, little old lady race-walked down to the drug store on the corner and stood there defiantly, expecting me to pull into a parking spot.

Instead, I pulled up to the store, opened the passenger door and said, "Get in or call a cab."

She could barely hold herself up on her cane as she creaked, groaned and huffed and puffed the six or so feet to my car, making SURE others saw it.

I was beyond caring at that point - and I ignored what I called her "performance art" (the Great Big Show-Stopping Pout and Sulk) as I drove her home.   :ninja:

As for her "saving you time" doing it herself and *not having you do it the next day" - rubbish.  It's a punishment, either way.  You either wait for her or get to do it for her and bring it back to her, so she can berate you and ABUSE YOU.

YOU are not the abusive one.  You raised your voice.  It happens.   I raised my voice when I told Didi to NOT threaten suicide again or she'd be explaining it to the nice young men in their clean white coats before they came to take her away, hah-ha!

(Does anybody remember that song, or am I dating myself?   :bigwink:)

And I promise everything she said about "people" in the store was a bald-faced lie, to make herself a *victim.*

Nobody heard squat.  Nobody cared.  Nobody did a thing except fax her stuff after she finally got around to doing it after looking at every single item in the Mailbox Store at least once.

About impersonating you to a doctor - well, first, NEVER tell her who your doctors are - and call them to tell them the TRUTH - your mother threatened to impersonate you on the phone *because she is mentally ill and getting worse*, so from now on, if anybody calls and wants to talk about your confidential medical files, they are to CALL YOU BACK at YOUR number(s) - and NOT the number given by the caller.

You can also ask to password protect your information.  Use something she'd *never* figure out.  Avoid her maiden name, your first pet's name, the names of your kids - you get the idea.   :)

I like  personal mnemonics:

Desmond Cat is 1 Little Purr Box of Delight.

Password:  DC1LPBD

*Not a real password for anything - just throwing out ideas.   And he's on my lap, being just that.   :cloud9:

Make it something you can remember easily.

She's getting desperate - you're a malfunctioning vacuum cleaner.  She's whacking you on the floor repeatedly, trying to get you to work again.  Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't - and it's working less and less.

You're pulling away - and it's time to work on detaching from her and getting some breathing room.

Please send the text Moglow suggested and watch how fast one of her pets has an "emergency."   :roll:

Ignore it - or send the same text and block her number for a few days, a week, a month - hell, the rest of your life!

You deserve better than this, Jenn.   :yes:

 :hug:

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FromTheSwamp

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Re: I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?
« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2017, 12:59:17 AM »
I have to agree with everyone that you need to tell your mother that she needs to make other arrangements for transportation, for her upcoming surgery and otherwise.  I'd just tell her that, straight out. 

She is a danger to you. 

When she asks why, I'd say something along the lines of, "This isn't working.  I'm sure you'll figure something else out.  I have to go."  And then hang the hell up. 

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Fightsong

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Re: I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?
« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2017, 02:35:06 AM »
Jenn. Get out. Go, run, She sure doesn't like the change in your behaviors does she??  Turn her raging nonsense back into a reason to strengthen your individuation and your boundaries. If you are abusive then surely she will need /want / welcome the distance right? So tell her so. People are not allowed to behave like that and get away with it in 'healthy' relationships. You gotta go baby.

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Blueskies

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Re: I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?
« Reply #8 on: October 13, 2017, 03:39:27 AM »
This is seriously abusive behaviour in my opinion. How dare she call you an 'F...ing sociopath'!

And the threatening to call all the doctors surgeries and pretend to be you to get your information is not 'weird' it's seriously illegal!!!! I would speak to your doctor's surgery and check their policy on giving personal medical info over the phone. If necessary tell them what has happened and make sure you are safe.

Your M sounds out of control. She is projecting onto you - the abuse stuff. It's what people with PD do.

And your posts are not 'endless drivel'. Please don't be self-deprecating - you are going through hell with this woman.

Please look after yourself - her wanting to impersonate you with your GP is not 'weird', it's absolutely illegal for good reason. She does not sound well.


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jennsc85

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Re: I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?
« Reply #9 on: October 13, 2017, 05:06:03 AM »

Guilt and obligation run deep and are hard masters. Only you can decide when enough's enough, when it's time for you to step back and let her sleep in the bed she's made for herself. Me? I wouldn't get into a car with someone I'd "checked off" as a sociopath, and I doubt I'd let her forget that for a while. Maybe she needs to be reminded that you both have choices here, and you have repeatedly stepped up regardless of how badly you've been treated.

This is so true. I just wonder when enough will really be enough. Her words don't affect me like they used to. Calling me a sociopath doesn't hurt me. But the whole experience of being trapped in a car with her while she rages at me... it does something to me. It wears me down more and more each time she does it. But, I feel like compared to some of the things she's done in my life, her short car rages aren't really "that bad." I've always said that if she were to physically assault me that would be the end of everything, and I find myself wishing that she'd slap me in the face again so I would have a solid reason to stop with everything. That's ridiculous sounding, isn't it? Also, she just doesn't think that she's treating me badly. I've told her before and it always comes back to being my fault. Even when she slapped me in the face 3 years ago. I "drove" her to that. And she says this stuff so much that I question everything I've done. I think that's her goal and it always works.


Woman Interrupted- This: "Didi would often want to "stop at the store" - and we'd be in Walgreens for 4 hours, looking at the same stuff, over and over.  If I said anything about needing to leave, she'd bark, "Don't RUSH me!" in an imperious tone and add at least another half hour, to teach me who was in charge."

THIS IS MY MOTHER! I have always felt like her taking so long at these "quick stops" is her way to assert herself. Like, I can make Jenn stop at the store. Once I'm here she's not going to leave me. I'll see how long I can take and if she gets upset I'll cry and throw a fit. She may not even have this thought pattern but it feels like that and that's why it bothers me so much. She always asks if I'd get upset if someone else was taking too long in a store and my answer (in my head) is no, because I don't downright despise anyone else the way I do her (and if I did I wouldn't be giving them rides!!) Also, I like the idea of password protecting my information with doctors. She says that her voice sounds like mine on the phone and that she could easily get my information. She was able to sit down with a banker one time acting as though she was me, so I have no doubt that she could do it over the phone. She knows a couple of my doctors  and I've signed forms that only I can access my information, but I feel like she's just convincing enough that she could find a way if she wanted to. And when she's bored, she LIVES for that kind of stuff.

And the way she said it- about impersonating me- she said it like it was funny. Like, our voices sound SO much alike that she could act like she was me and no one would ever know! Ha ha ha. But I know she's serious. She does things like that all the time like, "Oh honey, you'll be taking care of me til I'm 105 if Medicaid goes away! Ha ha ha!" But she thinks she's serious. And if I try to call her on any of that she gets offended because it was obviously only supposed to be  a "ha ha ha."

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moglow

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Re: I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?
« Reply #10 on: October 13, 2017, 05:51:01 AM »
Jenn. It's not funny to anyone but her and it IS abuse. Just because she's not putting her hands on you doesn't diminish what she's doing. I understand, really, I've said the same about mine - until I realized that I was excusing it in my mind, just like she does. Emotional, verbal, and psychological abuse leave scars too, scars that are hidden but eat away at us until we doubt everything we think or do. Yeah, kinda like you're doing now.

Just so you know, mine pushed that little envelope on my brother - the physical abuse - until he reacted. Mother got up in his face yelling and sniping, he backed off, and she kept on (with him physically moving back while she continued) until she got really mad and slapped him. At that point he grabbed her arms, steered her backwards to and shoved her out the door, then slammed it in her face.

Mother took pictures of the resulting bruises, showed them around town and claimed elder abuse and "I'm afraid of what he'll do next." AFTER she had told me what really happened. Yep, she embellished her story later, left out the part about her slapping him and him removing her from his home, and became the abused victim. She never pressed charges, but she proved her point. She can't be trusted and will stop at nothing for attention.

My point - You don't know what she'll do really, how desperate she'll get for attention. If she'll sit in your car and scream at you, call you names, threaten to impersonate you to doctors to get information, etc, you don't really know what she'll do or when.

Seriously - limit the information you give her. "I'm just not feeling well and don't want to discuss this" is a perfectly reasonable response, then you *don't discuss it further*. You can end the conversation or leave. She starts berating you in your car? Open her door and tell her to get the hell out. If she won't, YOU get out and call a cab, taking your keys with you. She can sit there a while. And next time -next several times actually- she can arrange other transport.

You decide, but really, this is way over the top.
Y'all need boundaries here before somebody snaps. And it might not be her next time. Don't do that to yourself.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2017, 05:53:22 AM by moglow »
“Nothing exposes our true self more than how we treat each other in the home.”  ~ Joseph B. Wirthlin

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Blueskies

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Re: I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?
« Reply #11 on: October 13, 2017, 06:06:46 AM »
It sounds like your self protection boundary is currently drawn at physical abuse. Psychological abuse can be just as damaging. The stress can be damaging to your health - physical as well as mental. My uBPM doesn't hit me, she doesn't even rage at me, but the abuse is unbearable. It consists of her treating me like an object and trying to control my life, my feelings, my thoughts, as well as telling other people I am mentally ill. For me it causes severe panic attacks, nightmares and depression. It sounds like you have a lot of self doubt, both about your behaviour and about how bad hers is and your reaction to it.

When she impersonated you to the bank, that was illegal.  When she rages at you in a confined space, or at all, that is abuse, and you are at risk of developing cPTSD. Her behaviour isn't safe.. It is alright to say no to it or to put down boundaries. She will not approve, she will try to make you feel like you are abusive or mad.

I'm so sorry for what you are going through. Don't worry about what other people think is abuse, look at what feels like abuse to you.

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VividImagination

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Re: I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?
« Reply #12 on: October 13, 2017, 06:17:52 AM »
It won't stop until you stop it. You get to decide how long the prison sentence lasts.
There are three solutions to every problem: accept it, change it, or leave it. If you cannot accept it, change it. I f you cannot change it, leave it.

Sometimes you're damned if you don't and damned if you do.. so damn well do what's best for you!

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practical

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Re: I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?
« Reply #13 on: October 13, 2017, 06:22:55 AM »
Quote
I've always said that if she were to physically assault me that would be the end of everything, and I find myself wishing that she'd slap me in the face again so I would have a solid reason to stop with everything. That's ridiculous sounding, isn't it? Also, she just doesn't think that she's treating me badly. I've told her before and it always comes back to being my fault. Even when she slapped me in the face 3 years ago. I "drove" her to that. And she says this stuff so much that I question everything I've done. I think that's her goal and it always works.
These are the thoughts of somebody who has been severely abused, who has formed trauma bonds. She already hit you, even if it is 3 years ago, isn't that enough? Do you need proof by her hitting you again? And what about all the other abuse? What you write is no different from women or men in domestic violence situations - and yes, for me domestic violence includes verbal, emotional, psychological abuse -. She so abused you that your sense of what is right and wrong when it comes to her is all screwed up. Her excuse "you drove me to it" is the classic excuse of abusers, and it is wrong, you didn't do anything to make her abuse you, it is her choice to abuse you and she gets something out of it, sense of power whatever, it is sick! It is the ultimate in gas lighting!

I might have posted this link before in one of your threads, anyway this is really helpful to understand the damage emotional abuse does:
http://www.outofthefog.net/forum/index.php?topic=13369.0

These are two videos that might help you understand what is going on:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WdoGfLL3Jio
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g-HjeIkoNWA

For the sake of maybe clarifying this situation in your mind, imagine she isn't your mother but your partner. What would you do then? Would you tolerate her behavior without drawing consequences? Her being your mother doesn't allow her any behavior you wouldn't allow a partner, as a matter of fact it makes her behavior worse as she is supposed to love you unconditionally.

I also have a suggestion, try to find some time this weekend and write a Personal Bill of Rights. Here are some examples:
http://www.outofthefog.net/forum/index.php?topic=66946.0
http://www.outofthefog.net/forum/index.php?topic=48132.msg432372#msg432372
http://www.outofthefog.net/forum/index.php?topic=15919.msg148758#msg148758
http://www.outofthefog.net/forum/index.php?topic=29083.msg271520#msg271520

A question and you don't have to answer, are seeing a T? If not you may consider it and maybe look for somebody who has experience with abuse, domestic violence, and personality disorders. Reach out for any help you can get.

And I agree with others, your M isn't likening the boundaries you have set, so she is pushing back hard. I went through this with my F, he did not like his malfunctioning dutiful daughter and it got really ugly. I stuck to my boundaries and the result was he drove me further away with his behavior. You might enter a phase or already be in it where this gets worse, so please reinforce your boundaries. I had a list of single sentence, non-committal, basically empty answers I could fall back on whatever F threw at me. If at all possible, try to lower contact, give yourself days off from her, because with this barrage, how can you even hear what you are thinking, feeling? You need some space to sort yourself out.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2017, 06:46:08 AM by practical »
“If I’m not towards myself, who is towards myself? And when I’m only towards myself, what am I? And if not now, when?” (Rabbi Hillel)

"I can forgive, but I cannot afford to forget." (Moglow)

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wisingup

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Re: I know I reacted badly, but was it really "abusive"?
« Reply #14 on: October 13, 2017, 07:28:17 AM »
Jenn - wow, your mom is really extreme and overt with her abuse of you.  I can hear how you are struggling to be kind & not abandon her, but I think you are taking too much damage in that process.  I feel like you would be fully justified in telling her "I'm done - you've used me up & broken me.  I'm taking (X amount of time, or forever) to heal." 

This is where I'm at with my own mom, who is much more waify and covert than yours.  And it has been hard.  I constantly wonder about whether she is able to deal with her endless problems, whether she is considering self-harm, who she is using/abusing in my place.  But oh my goodness the return of my own self & the reduction in anxiety & the reduction in unpleasant interactions has been priceless.  So many of my interactions with her were intended to keep me in my place, keep me from feeling too good about myself or my life, keep me worried and upset about her life, and keep me from giving equal time and attention to the people who really deserved it, thereby damaging my relationships with them & keeping me more tied to her.

We're here for you Jenn.  Keep strong & start to do things where you and your family are the priority.  You deserve it, they deserve it.  She will be OK, or she won't, but you've done way more than enough.