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  #31  
Old December 13th, 2010, 10:27 AM
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Re: Need help: My relationship with my parents

What does your counselor say?

IMHO it's time to get your dad involved. Let him know that her behavior has started to scare you and you are going to have to put space between yourself and your mom. Ask for his help, if he's willing to give it.

Why on earth would your mom's disapproval of your boyfriend ruin your relationship with your aunt?

The only thing I think you're doing wrong is giving her too much access. Do not pick up her calls. Do not have lunch with her. She is (of course) going to use all access to try to manipulate you. If she shows up at work, have the front office people (if you have them) tell her that you're unavailable. If you don't have front office people, tell her in front of coworkers that you're sorry, but you're busy and she'll have to leave. If it were me, I'd institute a clear "no contact" time span. "Mom, I do not want to talk to you/see you/hear from you until Saturday. If you stalk me, I will have you arrested."

She claims she didn't go in to your house... does she have a key? WHY? Have the locks changed.

What exact problems does she have with your boyfriend? This relationship has apparently sent her over the edge. There's got to be SOMETHING that would make a mom freak out.
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  #32  
Old December 13th, 2010, 10:57 AM
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Re: Need help: My relationship with my parents

My counselor continues to encourage me to be calm and rational about it with my mom. She also wonders if it might be time to get my dad involved but that I should only do so if I feel comfortable with it. My mom constantly says, "Well, Dad says this, Dad says that." But my dad has only talked to me ONCE about all of this. I'm not sure if my dad actually says the things my mom says he does. I have a hard time believing that he would condone her behavior. I have been thinking about talking to my dad for some time now, but I'm very hesitant to do so, if only because I don't want to hear that he believes my mom's behavior is correct. It might be that I need to believe he's not completely on her side and that I couldn't handle hearing otherwise.

I've picked up her phone calls and agreed to have lunch so that she can't say I'm completely shutting her out. I see now, though, that it doesn't matter if I talk to her or not; she won't be happy either way. I tried a "no contact" time in September, and it wasn't that successful. She still contacted with me. I absolutely would do that if Christmas weren't so soon.

Yes, my mom has a key to my house, and she knew the garage code (before I changed it). She doesn't have a key to my storm door, though, so I've started locking that. She even commented that I locked that door. (She claims she was dropping something off between the front door and storm door.

If you see in an earlier post, I list the five things she knows about my boyfriend. From that, she's completely demonized him and, by extension, me. She still doesn't even know his name and has never met him. She complained last Friday that she knows nothing about him and that there's this big part of my life that I've just cut her out of. I pointed out that I don't talk to her about my relationship because when I tried to earlier, she flipped out.

Her biggest problem with him is that he isn't from here, and she's afraid that I'll move away. When I was married, I didn't always live by my family, and it was pretty hard on me--mainly because I was married to someone who didn't spend any time with me, so I was very lonely. It was important to me to move back closer to my family, and now my mom thinks I'm completely abandoning that "need" I have just because this person has swept me off my feet. What I really want to tell her (but haven't had the courage to tell her) is that, regardless of what happens between my boyfriend and me, I no longer feel a strong desire to live by her. The longer this goes on with her, the more I'd actually like to move away. That has entirely to do with my relationship with her, not with any man, but she wouldn't believe that if I told her.
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  #33  
Old December 13th, 2010, 11:29 AM
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Re: Need help: My relationship with my parents

DMW -this will be hard, but you really need to set boundries (and many of us here have had problems setting boundries, so we understand how hard it can be)

no more JADE ( don't Justify, argue, defend, or explain, "no" means "no")

(((hugs)))


Have you read the books I recommended? (they were orginally recommended to me..."Boundries" & "Emotional Blackmail")
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  #34  
Old December 13th, 2010, 11:43 AM
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Re: Need help: My relationship with my parents

No, I haven't gotten a chance yet to read those books. I'll see if my local library has them.

In the meantime, how have some of you set up boundaries? Examples regarding setting boundaries with parents in particular would be appreciated.

I know that I can't change my mom's behavior, especially since she can't even seem to control it, but I need to make some kind of change so I don't make myself sick from the stress. I feel like I'm on the verge of some kind of breakdown or explosion.
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  #35  
Old December 13th, 2010, 11:47 AM
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Re: Need help: My relationship with my parents

snafu, are these the correct books?

Boundaries and relationships : knowing, protecting and enjoying the self / Charles L. Whitfield.

Emotional blackmail : when the people in your life use fear, obligation, and guilt to manipulate you / by Susan Forward with Donna Frazier.
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  #36  
Old December 13th, 2010, 12:05 PM
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Re: Need help: My relationship with my parents

the book by Forward is the one I was thinking about; the other one is this:

Boundaries: When to Say Yes, How to Say No to Take Control of Your Life
by Henry Cloud, John Townsend, John Sims Townsend
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  #37  
Old December 13th, 2010, 12:27 PM
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Re: Need help: My relationship with my parents

Quote:
Originally Posted by DaughterMW View Post
In the meantime, how have some of you set up boundaries? Examples regarding setting boundaries with parents in particular would be appreciated.

I know that I can't change my mom's behavior, especially since she can't even seem to control it, but I need to make some kind of change so I don't make myself sick from the stress. I feel like I'm on the verge of some kind of breakdown or explosion.

The hardest thing for was to stop JADEing and making excuses for others unacceptable behavior. (I've even looked for a ring with jade to remind me - I've still got to find one, but its the only "jade" I'm allowed ) If you make excuses/try to be the "peace keeper" & sacrafice your wants and needs you are an enabler/passive enabler (BTDT & bought the shirt)


You're right, you can't change your mom's behavior but YOU CAN change your own. (and caller ID can be a blessing)

I'm going to show my background...do you know any special ed teachers/ABA professionals? See if someone can help you write a behavior modification plan (don't put it that wasy to your DM though). You may want to run it through your councilor too. Simple statements, such as:

When you do ____________, ____________ will happen.

{ie when you talk with me in a positive manner, I will speak with you; if you are negative I will hang up/walk out. You may call me again ______ (ie Wed) if you are able to be positive. - If she calls later & is negative again, just restate- "You are being negative, You may call me again ____ (Sun) if you are able to be positive" then hang up. DO NOT answer phone calls from her before the stated date}

journal stuff ABC style (Antacedent, Behavior, Consequence{anything you did as a result of the behavior}) - you might be supprised to find that you are in some way rewarding your DM's behavior.

- you can reinforce negative behaviors without realizing it - I've done this too
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  #38  
Old December 15th, 2010, 06:17 AM
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Re: Need help: My relationship with my parents

My mom called this morning and left a VM on my work phone asking for the phone number of my counselor. She had talked to her pastor last night, who apparently kind of confirmed my mom's suspicion that I'm probably not being honest with my counselor. Now my mom wants to call my counselor and tell her how things really are (her words: "tell her things from the perspective of someone who has known me for a long time"). I called her back and things got really, really heated. I'm still mad from her emails on Monday, and she doesn't think I've ever told her why I'm mad. I have! I told her, among other things, that I feel like she's invading my privacy and that she's spying on me. She said that that must mean I feel I'm doing something wrong if I feel the need to be private. (Wrong! I just don't feel like I can talk to her about how things are in my relationship.) She complained that she used to be able to stop by my house without a moment's notice and that she's very offended that I use the word "spying." She drove past my house last Friday morning and saw my boyfriend's car in a parking spot near my house (not even in my driveway). From that she assumes we're practically living together.

I'm about to lose it. I'm shaking and just want to cry hysterically, but I'm at work.
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  #39  
Old December 15th, 2010, 08:00 AM
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Re: Need help: My relationship with my parents

Don't do anything until you've calmed down. Options are

(1) tell your mom she's welcome to go in WITH you to see your counselor and "set the record straight". Use it as an opportunity for joint counseling.
(2) make an appointment to talk to your mom's pastor. Apparently she isn't telling HIM the "whole truth" and she apparently is willing to turn to him for help.
(3) withdraw (my action of choice).

IMHO it's highly inappropriate for your mom to be calling you with so much drama at work. I don't know what you do, but back when I was working I would have been furious with my parents if they called me at work so frequently, and back then there wasn't email or texts. Don't know what you can do about that, but if there's any way to have your calls screened so she can't get through to you I'd do it. Let her know (via text or email) that she must stop bringing drama to your workplace and that henceforth you will delete any of her voicemails before listening to them.... (this is part of snafu's behavior modification plan).

P.S. Her behavior is getting more and more desperate... leaving you a "threatening" message at work, telling you that she has discussed the matter with someone you might consider an "expert"... She is trying to get a reaction from you, meaning she feels less and less able to control you. In retrospect, do NOT give her your counselor's number, because that will be allowing her to "have her way". She doesn't really want your counselor's number, she just wants to regain some ability to have you do as told.
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  #40  
Old December 15th, 2010, 08:26 AM
DaughterMW DaughterMW is offline
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Re: Need help: My relationship with my parents

Rats, KayKay. I already gave her my counselor's number. I'm okay with her talking to my counselor and trust my counselor not to turn into a "mom proponent." (I know that she shouldn't be a proponent of anyone, really. I talked to my counselor this morning, and she assured me that, if nothing else than ethical reasons, she will not discuss me with my mom.) As my counselor says, it's fine for my mom to disagree with me, but she thinks my mom needs to understand that I'm an adult and that she doesn't have the right to make my decisions for me.

At some point, I would like to see a counselor with my mom. It's what I've been suggesting for months now. Now that my mom has said that she would see my counselor with me, though, I'm not sure how effective that's going to be because she wants to see my counselor with me to try to prove me wrong, NOT to improve our relationship. She thinks I'm lying and she wants to rat me out.

Yes, you're absolutely right that it's inappropriate for her to be calling me at work with this. I've tried telling her that, and then she accuses me of never answering my phone outside of work because I'm with my boyfriend all the time. (Not true.)

At the very least, I'm 99% sure that I'm going to withdraw after Christmas. I'm going to tell her that I will not pick up the phone or read any emails from her. It doesn't matter what I say or don't say or do or don't do. She continues to harass me no matter what, so now I need to do what's best for my health and sanity.

I'm also seriously considering not spending Christmas with my family. The thought of seeing her stresses me out to no end, and I'm not even sure she wants me there. She constantly asks me if my plans have changed and if I'm still coming. Either she's trying to let me know that she doesn't want me there, or she's trying to test me. My very dearest friend in the world has assured me that I can spend Christmas with her and her family if I choose not to spend it with mine. (I really like her family, so it would be comfortable.) I don't know what to do.
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