Please don't take your mother's behavior personally as aimed at you for anything you might have done or will do. It is not aimed at you, she is the way she is because she has something wrong inside her brain or mind. It is not about you, you did nothing wrong. Please read Life Code by Dr Phil. And nothing you do or say will ever change your mother or make things better. You can only change how you think and stop blaming yourself or feeling at fault. Narcissists do this to other people, i e., make them feel at fault and blame others and take no responsibility. Its sick and twisted.
Thank you for your thoughtful replies. I have seen narcissistic behavior over the years but I do think that that it has manifested itself into rage toward me. She has no other children or family - I'm it. I want to ask her if her life is better without me but any questions like that will just prompt more poison pen letters. My heart is broken! You all may be on to something with medical issues also. If only I could know for sure but she will be combative to whomever tries to help. I will look into all your suggestions, though. Thank you!
Don't be embarrassed about your mother's behavior. As our older generations live longer and longer, we are going to see much more of this type behavior from the aging brain. It is not about you or anything you did, it is about HER and her issues. It sounds like a common thing that happens to older adults, common in situations like Alzheimers, too. You might want to talk to a social worker who specializes in older adult issues. They are called geriatric social workers. If you live in USA, try the local Area Agency on Aging for recommendations. Your pastor has likely heard it before, especially if he deals with older adults. Also google executive functioning decline. My inlaws don't even call my partner, but they call the other siblings daily to complain and demand this or that. My partner recently had a major operation and they didn't even call! Because they no longer can cognitively (brain wise). They both are narcissists and it has gotten worse as they have declined in health and brain wise. One parent is super mean to one sibling, its just pitiful. Its a rough ride and its sad and its hard. Wishing you the best.
I might ask, has she ever been sweet and loving to you? Can you really say this is a total change in personality? I would guess she has some executive functioning decline, or a stroke, or alzheimers starting up. But most likely, she has always been a bit on the ugly acting side, perhaps a bit critical of you, just not so bold and obnoxious? Its tough when mean people get to be older and have cognitive decline or dementia -- their personalities don't usually get better. They get dementia with the added personality disorder or mental illness that they always had. Makes is super tough for their relatives and caregivers. Main thing is -- don't take this personally. It is not about YOU, you did nothing wrong. Something is wrong with your mother, either always been harsh mother or just now. Look into narcissism. We have to remember that when people don't treat us kindly or with love, that nothing we can do is going to change who they are and how they are. It is not about you, it is about something broken or defective inside your mom. Best thing if this is how she always has been is to detach with love and stop caring about her personality and how mean she is. Learn to set boundaries. Protect yourself. It won't get better. If this is suddenly new and totally out of character, see if she can get evaluated by a good doctor who specialized in elder care or geriatrics. Good luck on that, though, she's likely to fight you about it.
Sounds like there may be some health problems with your Mom. Sometimes when the personality changes so abruptly, it may be a symptoms of physical, mental, and emotional upheaval. Check it out on all levels.
Is there anyone else whose parent (mother specifically) suddenly realized that you are a failure and a disappointment after 50 years of a close relationship? My mom starting sending me hateful emails last year and the anger, resentment and contempt she has harbored towards me all these years came out like a flood. I thought I was a loyal and faithful daughter to her. I'm the one who always traveled 300+ miles to see her, I volunteered to care for my elderly grandfather, I helped in whatever way I could, etc. She hasn't called me in over a year. The only emails I receive from her are political in nature, or about the weather. I have been very depressed about this but I'm trying to stay in peace and live my life in a way that's pleasing to God. I am too embarrassed to speak to my pastor or anyone else about this. I would love to hear from anyone else who's experiencing this. Thank you.
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