Am I a bad Mom

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Adria

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Am I a bad Mom
« on: April 15, 2019, 07:26:39 PM »
I can't take it anymore. The phone calls about all of schizo son's problems (that he creates). One on top of another and another and another.  I am so exhausted from the renovation of our new home. It was supposed to take two weeks, it has taken two months.  People in my house ten hours a day for the last eight weeks and I have no where to go and no peace. Meanwhile my son is calling me with every problem imaginable. I can hardly recover from these miserable phone conversations anymore.  We moved, downsized into a gated community to try to regain some control of our lives, but the attacks keep coming through the phone. I nearly through my phone out the car window today.

Would I be a bad mom if I tell my son I will only take his phone calls one day a week?  That is where I'm at right now. Nothing I do or say changes anything. He just makes one mess out of another out of his life. The three C's right? Why is that so damn hard!  Right now, it feels like either I will survive or he will. I can't do it anymore. :sadno:

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Goldielocks

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2019, 08:51:07 PM »
Yes, you should tell him that but then you have to stick to it. Could you afford another phone with a different number? Use the new one for everything else and leave the old one just with him on it.

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momnthefog

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2019, 11:28:24 PM »
You have to ..... and I do mean have to....take care of yourself first.

If that means letting it go to voice mail or taking calls once a week, then do that.

You have taken so many positive steps. Whatever boundary you decide....make it stick. 

Momnthefog
"She made broken look beautiful and strong look invincible.  She walked with the universe on her shoulders and made it look like a pair of wings."

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momnthefog

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2019, 09:25:53 AM »
Adria,

I just want to tell you that the point at which I found relief and started healing was the point at which I determined my boundaries and (most importantly) stuck to my boundaries.

In the early years of understanding my daughters BPD I allowed a lot of behavior that was damaging to me....she was oblivious to it....she often just needed a dumping ground, a place to vent.  Once I realized that no matter what I said, how many suggestions I gave, the number of uh-huhs I uttered or time I spent on the phone....it would NEVER be enough for her.  In several days it would be the same situation again.

I started filtering calls.  I didn't necessarily answer just because my phone rang.  I let it go to vm.  If she didn't leave a vm, I didn't return the call. 

I started ending calls when they went over my predetermined time limit.....not when she ran out of steam (as that could take 45+ mins). 

And I came up with some scripted answers like "I know you will be able to solve this on your own."  or  "What about calling your counselor about this?"  or  "I don't feel like I have the experience/insight to advise on that matter."

This was about 5 years ago....and it took a while, but things are better (for now).  I still end conversations after about 15 mins.....or if they get really toxic (she's dumping and trashing something).....and I filter calls from her and take them or return them on my schedule.

Hugs....it's not an easy journey....you are not alone....and (most importantly) you are NOT a bad mom,

momnthefog
"She made broken look beautiful and strong look invincible.  She walked with the universe on her shoulders and made it look like a pair of wings."

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Adria

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2019, 09:40:36 AM »
Goldielocks,

Thank you for your thoughts.  Yes, whatever I decide, I have to make it stick. Two phones. I haven't thought about that one.

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Adria

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2019, 09:46:53 AM »
Momnthefog,

Ya know, I totally get what you are saying and know that is what I should do. But, when that phone rings, I think, "Oh, I can do it one more time, it's not going to kill me."  Well, yesterday, I thought it was going to kill me and told my son that. Now, I feel terrible.

Thank you for your reminders. Sometimes, it helps to see it in black and white and to reread it a few times until it sinks in and feels okay.

Man, can life get any harder?  It seems at some point, it should all stop. 

Maybe this is the lesson I"m supposed to learn in life. That I can't fix everything and to for once take care of myself.  It's a hard one.

I saw your post Momnthefog, I'm sorry for what you are dealing with again as well. I just don't have much to say right now. Hugs to you. I wish you all the best.


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Frances29

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #6 on: April 16, 2019, 12:44:58 PM »
Adria, 

No, you are not a bad mom.

I am going thru something similar with my DD (22), I don't announce what she is doing to me (which is making me FURIOUS, disgusted, disappointed, harming my sanity and mental health and that of my younger two children and husband).  I just don't say anything. 

I don't announce that I am not taking her calls.  I just don't answer them.  I turn my phone OFF at night; when I WAKE UP, I turn the phone on.  She is already set to silent ring..so during the day I don't see her call.  I check the VM or not..

DD text the other day to 'send me xyz at college.'  I ignored it.  She called 5x, I didn't pick up, she didn't leave VM.  She text again, 'send me xyz at college.'  *she didn't say please and I could have sent it, I didn't feel like it so I didn't and a day later I sent back, "not sending anything."  She has no idea if I am in town, has no idea what I am doing with my other children, I am not doing another thing for her.  NOT.

I am sorry you are going thru this, and I will say the house renovation is GRATING and exasperating WITHOUT having a PD child..we went thru this last spring..a 4 weeks job turned into 4 months (I want to say quadruple your 'estimated time' the contractor gives you, and EXPECT problems along the way to add to the cost..

My 2 cents for today will be; please stop taking his calls, for x time period.  Don't tell him why, just start lowering the contact...they will eventually have to figure out a way without you...

This is awful, but I sometimes think I know women my age that have died of breast cancer, my high school friend was dx with stage 3 BC last year at 47 and died within 6 months (shocker in today's world but she got severe and resistant infection complications after the DM) so what if that was me...the ADULT child would have to figure it out...so I think if I was dead right now, I would not have to deal with her/his call..his/her problem..endless problems....

Their problems are not our problems, lets stop making an adults problems our problems, we ACTUALLy have lives and other children...and our health to think about...they don't get to take everything from us because we had them, they don't...

« Last Edit: April 16, 2019, 12:53:09 PM by Frances29 »

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momnthefog

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #7 on: April 16, 2019, 05:31:43 PM »
 :yeahthat:

I needed to read that today.

Momnthefog
"She made broken look beautiful and strong look invincible.  She walked with the universe on her shoulders and made it look like a pair of wings."

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practical

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #8 on: April 17, 2019, 08:43:28 AM »
Somebody on OOTF came up with the following saying and it has helped me in these situations many times "You don't have to set yourself on fire to keep other people warm". It doesn't work like you say yourself, you are burned out and he is still in the same place, still needy, unable to deal with his life on his own. Realizing it was me or my father with his ceaseless needs was a stark awakening for me. Committing to martyrdom for another person isn't a good thing in my book.

"It has nothing to do with you. Even if you had the character of Gandhi, Mother Theresa and Saint Francis rolled into one, you could never fill the void - because you cannot change what their mind creates. " This is from the article in the Glossary about "Self-Victimization" and has helped me many a times, because I know I'm none of these persons and even they couldn't do it. https://outofthefog.website/top-100-trait-blog/2015/11/4/self-victimization

You are not a bad mother, going on as you have would make you a bad caretaker of your own life.

:bighug:
ďIf Iím not towards myself, who is towards myself? And when Iím only towards myself, what am I? And if not now, when?Ē (Rabbi Hillel)

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

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Adria

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #9 on: April 17, 2019, 09:48:03 AM »
Frances and Practical,

Thank you so much for your wise words. You make many great points.

 I almost died of liver cancer because of the stress of my son a few years ago. I was given a second chance and am scared of my health all over again.  I needed to read what you have to say, and you are right. You are so right. It's a new day, and I'm going to start living and enjoying my life for the first time ever. It's my turn now. Yup!!! :yes:

I think I'm finally getting it. Wow! I must have a really thick skull, but I'm still trainable LOL! :doh:

You all are the best people in the world! I really appreciate you coming to my rescue and setting me back in line. Your caring and thoughtful words continue to blow me away. You're simply the best. Hugs and happiness, Adria
« Last Edit: April 17, 2019, 09:59:08 AM by Adria »

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Mommacon

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #10 on: May 01, 2019, 02:25:54 AM »
No, youíre not a bad mom. You are a wonderful mom who has been long suffering with a child that has issues and you need to care for yourself. Setting boundaries is a good idea. If youíre like me, it would be hard to limit my contact to once a week. You can have boundaries in that you can let the call go to voicemail or tell your son you can talk at a certain time of day, say from 11 am until noon, or something like that. Maybe talk to him  every other day. You choose the time that suits you. If he has an emergency, tell him to leave a message or text, otherwise try to keep your phone hour boundary. Explain to him you need to rest. My daughter just wants to know Iím not abandoning her , Iím just busy or resting and Iím not leaving her (as fear of abandonment would trigger her BPD symptoms). I have read lots of other good replies here. Iím new to this forum, so I donít know how to view replies. Lol 😂 Iíll figure it out.

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Adria

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #11 on: May 07, 2019, 10:25:05 AM »
Thank you Mommacon,

Welcome to the forum. There are many wonderful people here who truly care and offer great advice and much wisdom. I hope you stick around.

I appreciate your kind words. I don't want him to feel abandoned, so what you wrote would be a good compromise.  Setting boundaries is so hard, but I'm trying and I'm feeling much better these days. Sounds like you are doing well with boundaries for your daughter. Thank you again, Hugs, Adria


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Mommacon

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #12 on: May 18, 2019, 04:15:30 AM »
Adria,
Howís it going with your phone boundaries? I hope all is well. Iím going to make a post for the group, but Iíll ask you first. Do you have other children and how do they deal with your BPD son? My older 2 donít want to have anything to do with their sister and are holding grudges because of all the old behaviors. She has greatly improved, but they wonít give her chance. I understand why they donít want to interact, but if they would, they could see hat fat sheís come. The bad thing is that because of her dissociative patterns, she doesnít remember or recognize how she mistreated them when she was at her worst. I canít force them to forgive her and rebuild a relationship with her, but she genuinely wants s relationship with both of them. Itís sad and Iíve tried to help but the hurt is so deep for them. Any advice would  help .
Thanks, mommacon

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momnthefog

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #13 on: May 19, 2019, 08:55:10 AM »
mommacon

the question about siblings is a great one for discussion....hope you start and thread and share more of your story.

I have 5+ kids and will certainly chime in with my experiences.

momnthefog
"She made broken look beautiful and strong look invincible.  She walked with the universe on her shoulders and made it look like a pair of wings."

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Latchkey

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #14 on: May 19, 2019, 08:27:04 PM »
Adria,
I've been mostly absent from this board for a few months and just getting caught up.

 :bighug:

Just wanted to send you a hug and tell you that you are not a bad mom and hope things are easing up.

Latchkey
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When we have the courage to do what we need to do, we unleash mighty forces that come to our aid.

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OddSunflower

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #15 on: June 03, 2019, 07:46:37 PM »
You are definitely not a bad mom! I went limited contact with my schizophrenic addict daughter and it was the best thing I ever did. It was so hard in the beginning. I had to resist the urge to text her and find out what she was doing. My boundary was that she could text for a "check-in" once a day (she chooses to be homeless) and then one phone call a week. She is not allowed to ask for money, food, etc. We do not talk about her recovery (or lack there of). Sometimes she doesn't call and that is ok. It has been a couple months now and I find a lot of peace in this VLC. One day we may be able to move forward from this but for now, it is best for both of us.

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band2002

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #16 on: June 17, 2019, 08:26:57 AM »
You're not a bad mom. Last year my husband sat my BPD stepdaughter down and told her she is no longer allowed to call, text, or contact him on social media. If an emergency, her husband will contact him. He would go to her house once each week to visit her and the grandkids for aprox. 2 hours. Of course she went into victim mode, crying that he was abandoning her, trashing him on social media, trying to manipulate to call him...but he stuck to his guns. A year later he is much healthier, happier, and our marriage is stronger. He goes to visit every week without fail, and is able to leave whatever drama is happening at their house behind him. He still gets flamed occasionally on social media (father's day didn't coincide with his visit day, so there was the "poor pitiful me, I don't have a daddy who cares" post" but we only learn of it when other people bring it up. He's learned to ignore it, and no longer make her adult problems his. My advice: whatever boundaries you set, stick to them. You will get pushback, but it will be a lifesaver for you.

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Adria

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #17 on: June 18, 2019, 12:34:32 PM »
Mommacon,

I'm sorry I've missed your post.  Still settling into our new house and haven't revisited the board much lately or the parent's discussion.

Things are going a little smoother. The phone boundaries have helped, but I've eased up as my son is doing very well again right now.  My daughter looses patients with him, but does seem to have grown to have more empathy. I think for awhile, she was jealous of all the attention he needed, but she is stepping up to the plate some.  I'm sorry for the difficulties it has put on the relationships in your family.  Maybe in time the siblings will gain more understanding and be able to forgive some. These situations are not for the faint of heart.

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Adria

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #18 on: June 18, 2019, 12:36:50 PM »
Everyone,

Thank you for all of your kinds words. Things are going much smoother lately, son has been calling more, but after I basically let him have it for dumping on me a couple weeks ago, his phone calls have been much kinder and more pleasant.  I felt like I had a mini breakdown a couple weeks ago from one of his calls. One too many. I think he gets it now, but I have had a tough time recovering myself. It definitely take at toll.

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beth207

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Re: Am I a bad Mom
« Reply #19 on: July 17, 2019, 04:57:09 PM »
Can you go to email or text only?  I can't deal with speaking to my son, I don't want to see him, I'm sorry you have to go throug hthis