Sadness

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strivingfornormal

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Sadness
« on: February 09, 2019, 07:46:02 PM »
So I had my Mom to stay again, for the first time in a long time. It's unravelled me, so I wanted to post to see if this rings true for anyone else. The first day was okay, but by the last day I felt totally exhausted in every possible way. Whatever is there is subtle, but I couldn't be myself. When I tried to talk to her about my stuff (as I'm going through some quite serious things right now) she didn't seem that interested/ glazed over so I guess I shut down somewhere inside.  She didn't validate things I was saying/ worried I had and that is hurtful.  A couple of times she said I looked pretty but wasn't concerned with me as a person, the 'inside' me. But at some point in the day she then needed me to be tuned in to her, and seemed annoyed if I wasn't.  I'm trying to unpack it as I don't spend much time with her now, but it's something like she wants me to be her friend, partner or spouse emotionally, and not her child emotionally. She does 'forced teaming' (I googled this) and continually uses the term 'we' - eg 'we don't need this' , 'remember? we did this', and 'we lived there' and says it A LOT. She overrides what I want and need, eg in terms of foods, if I say I don't want something but she says 'yes you do'. In the end I just got so exhausted and felt I'd really packed myself away inside. If we went out to the store or the mall she kept wanting to go and see things and for me to automatically follow, or to wait for her. A couple of times we had to deal with technology and she just decided she couldn't operate something so wanted my help - it was usually when my attention was elsewhere, and she wanted my focus on her all the time. If I went to my room to do something she would make something for me, before asking, then call me  - again, like she wanted my time and attention. But if she wanted her own time/space that was okay. I'm finding it hard to explain all this as it was small things, no big thing, just the dynamic, like maybe push and pull, but where I was made to feel like the bad guy. She made me so tired (also having to be with her all day, every day) that when I got tired (and it showed) it seemed to annoy her, and it made her 'on' even more, and more demanding. When I tried to get her help on one thing I'm going through, which involves my sister, instead of having empathy she said 'sometimes people decide they want to stop helping'. There was just this real lack of empathy where I felt myself having to over explain things for her to put herself in my shoes, but that's nothing new. I couldn't get my stuff done the whole time I was with her, so much so that I became a different, weaker person, like she is kryptonite to me. That's the best explanation I have. But I somehow feel bad that I can't tolerate her.  I don't get her either, there seem to be these different behaviours, one moment she seems very 'together', another time I see 'the waif' (as I've read) where she's helpless and looks vacant, and is helpless to help me. I feel so angry inside, and so alone. I tried but feel unravelled. She tried to be a mom today but leaned in really close to me and it was too close, I told her to lean back a little and she got offended. She seems sensitive but makes out I am sensitive.

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Psuedonym

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Re: Sadness
« Reply #1 on: February 09, 2019, 08:28:19 PM »
Everything you said - really well, by the way - rings true, strivingfornormal. Your mom sees your role as being her support system, not as an individual person. I think PDs who engulf as opposed to ignoring their children are especially confusing because, as you pointed it out, its more subtle than the outright neglecting ones. At its essence it really boils down to invalidation. If you google invalidation in families you'll find that it's so damaging that it's considered to be a major factor in actually developing BPD.  I found this to be a really insightful video as to why this kind of dynamic is so damaging: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sZDtAUYMgCA. Maybe it will help you as well.

 :bighug:

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strivingfornormal

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Re: Sadness
« Reply #2 on: February 09, 2019, 09:08:29 PM »
Thanks, yes that link really rings true. What I didn't say is she also doesn't seem to be able to 'read' how I'm feeling, eg if I'm tired, or need space. She overrides it and just wants what she wants. I feel totally crappy and can't seem to come out of it. Like I let her down, by not being able to be around her. She would have felt it, and will think it's just me being a b*****. Not sure if she knows what she's doing

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MyLifeToo

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Re: Sadness
« Reply #3 on: February 10, 2019, 07:50:21 AM »
Yes, yes, yes, you have written out exactly what I experience with my m. Everything you said I can relate to. It is so wearing I am getting to the end of my tether, but like you said, it's so subtle. I've never heard the term "forced teaming", it's a good one, thanks, I'll check it out.

Would somebody who hasn't been through it know what it's like to be talked of in terms of "we"? I doubt it. "We don't like this", "we want that", and to my absolute horror I sometimes find myself saying it too, especially when dealing with someone in an official capacity for her. Then there's having to have a piece of cake/sandwich with a coffee because "we deserve to treat ourselves", but I'm trying to lose weight. Then she gets annoyed when I say I don't want anything, but she should still have it. She says she won't enjoy it if she's eating it on her own.  :doh:

My mother's favorite thing to do at the moment is the huge victim act, where she will tell me in great long detail how someone has treated her so badly. I am expected to agree with her and validate her feelings, but I cannot because I know from personal experience how she changes the truth, or totally misinterprets a simple comment or situation. I try to explain an alternate, non judgemental view and am told off for always taking sides with everybody else and never her. If I don't say anything, that's wrong too. There are times what mc just doesn't work.

I've got a week off work coming up. In the past I would have spent most of the week down at her house because she's getting old and frail. This time I feel that I cannot, for the sake of my own sanity. I told her I would come for three days because I've got things I need to do here. She tried to argue with me that I didn't, and that she hopes I'll to things for her too. Every time I visit I'm her personal slave, and I don't mind doing it, but I really resent the manipulation. Let's face it, doing her housework is far better than sitting for hours listening to the victim speeches.

As for her getting annoyed at me and my adult kids for being tired, well, that's almost a hanging offence! I can't believe the number of disputes over that one. She rang me at 9:30 last night, and because she's had a really terrible week I allowed the  conversation monologue to continue long after I wanted it to. In the end I said I'm tired and want to go to bed. But she had one more thing that she just had to tell me... 40 minutes later, well gone 11, I said it again. I got, "you always say that when you want to get rid of me" followed by a scornful "what are you, a little old lady?". I said yes I am old, goodnight, and hung up while she was still spluttering on.

I went to bed and couldn't sleep. I felt diminished, and using your excellent choice of words, unravelled. When I woke up (far too early) this morning realizing that I'd been emotionally bullied (again!) and was exhausted by FOG and the fight against manipulation.

I know I've got to set firm boundaries and stick to them, but inside my head I'm still a child who cannot stand up to her mother. I'm really trying and it's really hard, and this site feels like my salvation! Keep reading the boards and the toolbox, and remember that you matter too.



Pseudonym, another great link, thank you.
Here's another good one by the same author, https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=lMvdR52nAfs
« Last Edit: February 10, 2019, 08:33:31 AM by MyLifeToo »

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emu_oil

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Re: Sadness
« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2019, 02:13:58 AM »
But I somehow feel bad that I can't tolerate her.

I totally resonate with this statement and pretty much everything else that you wrote. These days, I feel guilty for things that don't warrant me feeling guilty, and I have to remind myself that I have not done anything wrong. Like you, I want to tolerate my family members, but when I try to, I'm left feeling angry and alone and completely disregarded as an individual. I really appreciate how you articulated your experience with your mom; I have had very similar experiences with mine and the guilt and anxiety can be paralyzing at times. It's funny how certain people can be hypersensitive and extremely insensitive at the same time ugh.

I'm so sorry that your mom's recent visit was exhausting and unpleasant. Just know that you are not alone!

:bighug: