I have a strange relationship with my mom, in the sense of, we don't have a great relationship. I cant figure out why though, I try to remember things that maybe explain why our relationship is so distant, but I can't find it.she isn't nice to my husband, but she isn't mean either, and whenever I try to bring it up, she acts like she isn't treating him poorly. it's never off the wall mean things, it's things like, she asks to stay the night and when I tell her we can't have her stay the night because he works, she says "I'm coming to spend time with you" implying that her being there has nothing to do with him, it's like she forgets that we live in a small one bedroom apartment and his time home is just as important as mine. she also does this thing where if we have a disagreement about literally anything, she refuses to talk about it, she shuts down the conversation entirely. she tries to imply that my husband is bad for me just because he had a hard time finding work even though he was putting in several job applications daily (luckily he found a really nice job, and we're doing much better). she also conveniently forgets that my dogs we're the only reason I didn't kill myself, and she suggested that we get rid of them (we were having a hard time finding a place to live, so I get where she's coming from, but still, but we found a place so we still have our dogs).when she asked to stay the night, I couldn't bring myself to flat out say no, and I don't know if that's because of her or something else, but I haven't had too bad of an issue telling other people no. setting boundaries with my mom is difficult, I don't know what I expect to happen if I set a boundary, I don't know if she'll get upset or if she'll be fine. I think when I was a kid she was like that too, some days setting a boundary or asking a question was totally ok, but other days it was like I personally offended her. idk, I'm just kind of venting.
Personality Disorder (PD)
Others can totally correct me, but I’m seeing some narcissistic and controlling behavior on her part. I’m also wondering if maybe her attachment style is coming into play in how she feels this absolute need to be the center of attention for your world, but without actually empathizing with what you think or where you are coming from.
I know this is going to sound hard, especially given how difficult it is to even say no to her, but you may want to actively try opening up and repairing your relationship. Unspoken tension just leads to worse and worse outcomes (and regrets) over time.
You may also find some benefit in reading a book called It Didn’t Start with You. It’d all about inherited family trauma and cycles of damaging behavior with family members.
I think she may have realized that my relationship with her was fizzling, and she's made attempts to be a part of my life, but I think her inherent dislike for conflict, and my new ability to say no without actually saying no, is going to benefit me in the long run. She's really good at not outright saying anything mean about/to my husband, but while I may have a hard time setting my own boundaries, defending my husband is something else entirely, it's one thing to disregard me or my space, it's another to do the same to him, he works 10 hours a day 6 days a week and sometimes he's on call over the weekend, so he has to get up and go to work whenever his phone rings.
Have you ever read about Childhood Emotional Neglect? I recommend the book Running on Empty by Jonice Webb. From what you’ve described, I think that there may be some helpful and insightful things in there. It explains some of the feelings you have and you “can’t figure out why” and why it may be harder to set boundaries with her than it is to set them with others. I really wish you well. It sounds like a really tough situation. ❤️ 🤗
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