Issues with my mother...

Discussion in 'Family, Friends and Relationships' started by Melmoth the Wanderer, Apr 25, 2008.

  1. Melmoth the Wanderer

    Melmoth the Wanderer Well-Known Member

    This probably isn't the right place to post this thread, as this really isn't about romantic relationships or sex, but I couldn't find a more appropriate spot. Let me know if I need to move it.

    Because it’s so long, I’ve added a summary at the end.

    This is about my relationship with my mother. To be honest, sometimes I truly hate her. I know how horrible it is to say, "I hate my mother," especially since I am no longer a teenager, but I need to get this out.

    I resent my mother because she has shown me time and again that I am not as important to her as other people (or even the occasional animal) in our family are. When I was little, my older sister was catered to and given more attention. She played the piano well and had blond hair and blue eyes; she was thin, had a straight nose, and was girly. My sister could manipulate my parents because they let her. For example, if I was speaking with my mother about something in the living room or adjoining kitchen, my sister could and would often come in and start banging away on the piano. If we were on the sofa, my mother would stop the conversation with me and listen to my sister. If I tried to continue, my mother would either not listen or put her finger to her lips and signal me to be quiet. If we were in the kitchen talking, my sister would play the music so loudly that we could no longer hear each other. The conversation would be quickly and loudly ended so that my mother could listen. These tactics didn't always work, but more often than not, they did, and my mother allowed them to. The end result was that I'd return to my bedroom and immerse myself in my only stable companion, my television. There are other examples I could give, but this one in particular gives the gist of it: I was second on my mother’s list while I was growing up.


    Now that my sister has moved on and is engaged to be married, my mother has turned her attention to herself and her dying sister. Don't misunderstand me: my aunt has suffered from cancer for over ten years, and now she has a rare form attached to her spine that could cripple her any moment and is inoperable and untreatable. My aunt's life has been one of pain and torment, all because a quack doctor in the fifties thought it was a good idea to treat sick children with radiation (I wish to God I was making that up!). But, to get back to the topic: my mother seems to be in a mid-life crisis. She is planning to divorce my father, change careers, and move across state. Before doing the latter two, however, she is taking care of her sister.

    I would admire her devotion and love if she didn't keep trying to pass the buck and convince me to take care of my aunt instead. You see, I've dropped out of school, lost my job, and am unsure as to where I should go next. Understandably, my mom thinks it would be perfect if I would take her place and be a live-in nurse for my aunt. As she stated on the phone one day, my doing so would “help a lot of people” (please note that it would help exactly one person: my mother). Unfortunately, as I’ve tried to tell my mother, I am not a caretaker-type of person. In fact, I quickly end up resenting people I have to take care of. I simply don’t have the patience and the goodwill to do that line of work. Even just the other day, when I was planting some flowers for my aunt, I became quite annoyed when she asked for some lunch in a baby-voice. Nothing annoys me more than a baby-voice request! If you want something, just ask for it! Regression doesn’t do anything but add to the self-degradation! But I digress.

    I’ve told my mother “no” already, but she keeps trying to sell the situation to me. She talks about how nice the house is, how I could garden in my aunt’s spacious yard, how I wouldn’t have to do much to take care of her (my aunt has a husband who helps a lot, but he’s overburdened with her, his work, and his sick mother), how I have so much in common with my aunt, etc.

    My first gut reply is that “Well, if it’s so great, why do you want to get away so badly?” I know my mother would spout out something about work and money, about how she’s given me so much (material goods, mostly). But I know the truth: she wants to kill two birds with one stone and tie up her familial loose ends by pairing the two “problems” with each other. She wants to be free to fulfill her own dreams, even though she would be delaying my own, because she’s “waited fifty years” and I’ve only waited ten to twenty years. She knows that if she doesn’t leave soon, she’ll become stuck in my aunt’s situation, so she wants me to take her place and become stuck instead.

    I know I sound like a spoiled brat, but it seems that in this culture, one becomes either a spoiled brat or a rug mat. I wish we had a stronger, more communal culture where neighbors, friends, and relatives all took care of the sick instead of one person taking care of the sick. I wish my aunt didn’t have to suffer and die a slow death. I wish I was the kind of person who enjoyed taking care of others. But wishes are wishes, and reality is reality.

    I’m trying to convince my mother to talk to my aunt about getting a good live-in nurse, but because my aunt is instinctively against it, my mother won’t pursue it. Either my mother’s dreams die, or mine die. That seems to be the choice.

    I.)Sometimes I hate my mother
    I have never been among the top most important people in her life
    I was ignored and left alone for hours at a time as a child
    She can be controlling, manipulative, and selfish, all the while accusing me of the same​

    b.)My mother is taking care of a dying aunt
    She wants me to take over this responsibility so that she can continue on with her mid-life crisis
    I don’t want to become stuck and isolated in a house of death (I’m necrophobic and suicidal; seeing someone suffer and decay before my eyes doesn’t help me)​

    Any thoughts, suggestions, or expressions of understanding would be greatly appreciated. You’re welcome to call me thoughtless and selfish if you prefer. I just need some outside perspective on this.
  2. Sa Palomera

    Sa Palomera Well-Known Member

    Hey there Melmoth :hug:

    Firstly I'd like to say that I'm sorry to hear about the relationship between you and your mother :sad: A mother should never put one child behind the other, ever. :hug:

    I'm not going to give any advice here, because I myself wouldn't know what to do either. But I do feel for you and I think your mother should not put you in the situation she's putting you in :hug:
    You don't sound like a spoiled brat or thoughtless to me either. In fact I think it's good that you're aware of the fact that you're not a 'caretaker-type of person', as that could save you a lot of trouble.

  3. You don't seem spoiled at all. It sounds to me like your mother is the selfish person. She shouldn't try to change her life from what it is, considering that her life thus far, has been a fulfilling life, more so than what many people ever get to have. She hasn't been supportive enough to you. Her favoritism of your sister, is horrific in how your mother neglects you. My advice is that you tell your mother that you won't sacrifice any more of your life for her, considering how she has been to you.

    Take care
  4. Melmoth the Wanderer

    Melmoth the Wanderer Well-Known Member

    Thank you both for your kind, sympathetic replies. It's good to know for sure that my reactions to this situation haven't been unreasonably self-centered. :smile:

    Some good news, though: today I spoke with my mother about visiting a college I'm interested in, and she seemed excited about it and was very supportive. I hope it's a sign that she's beginning to accept her own and my decisions.
  5. Sa Palomera

    Sa Palomera Well-Known Member

    aww that's good to hear, Melmoth! :hug:
    Keep us posted :smile: