Resentment and its effect

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Resentment and its effect
« on: April 07, 2018, 04:55:03 PM »
I was actually going to start this post with lamenting about the behavior of my PD mother and the resentment between my siblings and family members that is a result. As I sit here typing, I realize that people who are hurting, no matter why, in the end does things to try to hurt the people who her them. Both my sisters have taken on the task of setting boundaries with my mother and has stated multiple times that they are going to have to deal with her at a distance. For so long, I have had a genuine hate for my sisters because while they could just walk away, I could not due to my mother's declining health and just her behavior in general. I thought I had gotten over the resentment I had for them but I am still feeling those feelings as I type this post. I have tried to not let these issues come to a head but I am just so mad at them. I become so angry with my oldest sister because when I come to her in need of understanding and just a bit of relief from my mother, the only thing she does is spout off about how "momma has made a hard bed and now she has to lie in it" but you are not the one who receives 33-35 calls a night from your mother (I am not exaggerating), along with 3-5 calls from other people who she has commissioned to call because essentially she is a toxic person that no one wants to deal with and she is at home alone by herself. It makes me feel back in that place where I lived in the same city as my mother and was taking on the full responsibility of my mother and her behavior. I get so frustrated because physically my mother does not need live by herself ( stage 4 lung cancer, COPD, and draining catheter in lung to drain fluid caused by her cancer), she is not sick enough to be in a nursing home, and honestly no one has the extra money to provide any outside care for her. I am weary mentally, back to the place where I am on the  verge of tears at every moment because I do not know what to do. I am angry because I don't need words or inaction from my siblings, I need real solutions. But at the same time, I cannot expect anyone to deal with her and subject them to her behavior. In the interim of starting therapy (my appt is in 2 weeks), I just need a place to vent. The posts that will come will probably not be of any value to anyone but I really need a place to just get rid of these emotions so not to be consumed by them.



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Re: Resentment and its effect
« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2018, 05:14:52 PM »
silentasalamb, I just finished a post about boundaries. So I am going to respond from that place, and I hope it will not be upsetting to you. I feel for you. I feel for all the children of PDs whose parents are the engulfing type. Seriously, if even my beloved DH called me more than 10 times a day I'd be freaking out! That is sooooo excessive. It must be incredibly exhausting and upsetting for you!

I do think, though, that your siblings have learned to set boundaries with her and that might be where you would be able to find more peace. It really isn't your siblings' fault that your M calls you this often. It sounds like she used to harass them also and they found a way to shut it down, as it was probably intolerable to them also (please forgive if I'm missing vital details about your story that make my response inappropriate)

You say so wisely "I cannot expect anyone to deal with her and subject them to her behavior." This is so true. I think you are probably a deeply kind and caring person who finds it unbearable to leave your M without your care and attention.

Can any of the 3-5 flying monkeys help her?
Is in-home care, even provided by your local govt, an option?
If your M realizes how desperate her situation is, would she respond to firm but kind boundaries from you, such as "I'm unable to take more than 3 phone calls per day, so once I have answered the phone 3 times I will not be able to respond any more that day to your phone calls." Might she respond to that, over time, with practice?
Are your siblings willing to help behind the scenes, like doing laundry or making meals that someone else brings over?
What would happen if you told your M that she is wearing you down, and if she cannot abide by basic rules of respect (# of phone calls, # of visits, or whatever you can handle), then you will be unable to help care for her?

I don't have elderly parents, so I don't know the ins and outs of these situations. I do, however, have a lovely old lady who depends a fair amt on our family. Sometimes when she is agitated, she will call me up to 6 times in an hour. I don't intend to miss her calls, but I have my phone on silent and so usually miss them. I call her back when able, and if she isn't happy with my response time she finds someone else to help deal with her "crisis" (which is never a crisis, but understandably feels like one to her and makes her feel anxious). She's not my parent, so there isn't that emotional baggage, but when I do reach her I simply ask how I can help, stay calm, and don't get dragged into where I was, what I was doing or why I couldn't respond. Me staying calm seems to help calm her down. Not sure if this would apply to your M...

I'm so sorry for what you face. In the interest of full disclosure, I myself am the sibling who has first opted out of coping with our parents' PD behavior, so my siblings may feel as you do right now. As "that sibling," I can tell you it came from a place of total anxiety and self protection. Your siblings might seem calmer, colder, stronger, but it's possible they are only "doing better" because they backed away from your M's unbearable behavior.



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Re: Resentment and its effect
« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2018, 05:21:44 PM »
a cpuple of platitudes that are sometimes true:

The road to hell is paved with good intentions.

No good deed goes unpunished.

When I started to observe people who didn't have "these problems", one thing I noitced is that they kept a healthy distance or boundaries if you will from toxic people.  It helped them to be able to say things that were reasonably positive or at least negative than what I was thinking. 


Peace Lily

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Re: Resentment and its effect
« Reply #3 on: April 10, 2018, 06:29:36 PM »
Hi Silentasalamb,  I feel for your situation and now wonder you feel as you do, you are only human. All4peace mentioned boundaries and I agree that this is where you need to concentrate your efforts in order to improve the situation  You cannot change your mother or your siblings. You cannot alter their behaviour, but you can change the way you respond.  Your siblings probably feel OK taking aback seat as you appear to have it all under control and so they are taking no responsibility.  Your mother is pushing your boundaries because they are weak.  If you strengthen your boundaries by establishing what you ARE willing to do, sticking to that and then as kindly as possible saying no to your mother for other things, not always answering the phone, she will phone someone else if it an emergency situation.  If you take a step back, your siblings may feel compelled to step up and take some responsibility , and your mother may take more responsibility for herself. It is more difficult when someone is ill, and we daughters and sons of PDs have huge guilt buttons which are easily activated!  Your therapy starting soon will help you no end I am sure.  Hang in there till then. You have realised there is a problem and so you have already taken a huge step in the right direction.  :bighug:
"It is not the the bruises on the body that hurt. It is the wounds of the heart and the scars on the mind". Aisha Mirza



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Re: Resentment and its effect
« Reply #4 on: April 10, 2018, 09:01:24 PM »
Hi silentasalamb,

I am so sorry that you are dealing with all that. It sounds emotionally draining. I'm sorry to hear about your mother's health condition as well.

I used to be jealous and resentful of my sister for the similar reasons. It seemed so easy for her to stay away and not help the family while I felt like I was stuck dealing with them. It was also unfair that I was giving up so much of my time, trying to earn love from my parents (I am the scapegoat), while my sister gets to have her distance and still be the favorite (good child).

The thing that helped me, as others on here mentioned, are boundaries. All4peace makes some great suggestions as to where to start.

Take care and good luck. Learning to set boundaries isn't easy but it is vital to our mental health.
“How starved you must have been that my heart became a meal for your ego”
~ Amanda Torroni