My mother...

Old 12-20-2003, 06:00 PM
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My mother...

...hasn't spoken to me in days and I've forgotten what I did wrong. I'm not going to ask though because I've had enough of submission. I've been owning my part and apologising, making amends until now but I've had it. Yes I know she had a bad childhood and doesn't know how to express herself, but that's not working for me anymore.

My sponsor tells me to understand that my sobriety and therapy is scary and confronting for her and that she might need reassurance. NO! I've had enough of it and its not my responsibility to make sure she's feeling ok. I don't understand why I need to be the one trying all the time, it doesn't make sense to me anymore.

The silence is awful. She does a lot of cupboard slamming, sighing, eye-rolling and leaves the room when I enter. It's very shaming to me, I feel like there's something wrong with me all the time. This is ridiculous. What bugs me more than anything, though, is that I'm playing along too because I refuse to budge. This is a childish stand-off and that's really how I feel at the moment - like a child.

My therapy is bringing up a lot of the old feelings and resentment. I'm not coping too well and have been depressed for a few weeks. My therapist wants to increase my dose of medication next week and though it scared me at first, now I think it would be a good idea. I have real problems doing the most simple things like cleaning, and I think this is what is annoying her. She takes this as a sign of disrespect and I haven't told her what's going on because she thinks depression is "selfish." Also, I don't want her to know I'm down, I prefer that she thinks I don't give a ****.

Please be honest with me and tell me what you think.

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Old 12-20-2003, 06:19 PM
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Your mom sounds so much like my dad. The silent treatment is such a demoralizing thing to have to deal with from a parent, and like you, I always felt I had to be the one to make amends and make things better, long after I'd forgotten the mortal sin I'd committed to create the mess in the first place.

Instead of making amends, maybe you can just say to her something like, "Mom, I'm sorry you're pissed off, but I don't feel I've done anything to deserve this attitude." Try saying something that will acknowledge her mood but keeps you from taking responsibility for it. I don't know if it will make things better or worse, but it has you really upset and you might feel better by trying to get things out in the open. Maybe if you have your say, you'll feel better about it, regardless of her reaction.

I completely understand how you feel. When I stopped taking it so personally, the silent treatment used to really **** me off. Oh wait a sec, I never stopped taking it personally... Sheesh, you'd think they'd grow out of it!

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Old 12-20-2003, 08:40 PM
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She is not being silent at all! She is slamming doors and rolling here eyes. She has something on her mind and she wants you to read it. That is her problem and it is manipulation. Trust me on this...I do it. I am working on it, but the fact is that I still do it.

For me it is a difficulty expressing what I want, but for Ward it is a pain in the a**!

For me if Ward says..."Spit it out" puts it back on me. If I don't, then who is the one to blame??

We (or Ward) cannot read minds...

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Old 12-20-2003, 09:02 PM
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Thanks a lot you two, I was going out of my brain trying to work out what the heck is going on. I mean its pretty obvious in some ways, but I'm reading so much more into it now that I'm more aware of the dysfunctionality that I've completely forgotten what started it in the first place.

Time to use the God Box!

I'm going to swallow my pride and speak up first...eventually anyway. I am not going to take responsibility though, that was a good distinction to make because I've been feeling that ANY communication is surrender. Well, ok it is surrender.

Do we have a white flag smilie around here yet?

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Old 12-22-2003, 11:16 AM
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Amy...that is not swallowing your pride, it is keeping your side of the street clean...there is a difference.

I agree with these two wise ladies.

I hope things worked out.
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Old 12-23-2003, 08:00 AM
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My mother manipulated me with the silent/not so silent treatment my entire life...then...when I moved out she had to become vocal so she used crying. I carried around guilt for things that had absolutely nothing to do with me! When I first started in Al-Anon (1 year ago) I used to say things like "I am sorry you feel that way" or "I am sorry you are acting that way". Then I realized I had nothing to apologize for! Now I say"wow, it's too bad you are acting that way". It puts the responsibility of her actions back on her....and shuts her up...thats always a bonus! Recovery scares those who need to be in it but are not...reality is too frightning for them...stay focussed on you!
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Old 12-24-2003, 05:38 AM
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I'm a bit confused about this and I'm not sure why, nothings very clear to me at the moment as I tend to get too involved. It all used to be so simple! I had no problems with detaching before but its just not that easy lately. This really feels like the start of another journey for me, this time with emotions.

So anyway, its a good thing that she spoke up first. She told me that I should think about moving, I told her I already had been and we're getting along ok now. Now I've swung the other way and feel incredibly sad for her and helpless on top of that. I'll be going to Al-Anon when I get back from holiday, I'm looking forward to that.

Thanks everyone,
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