(Closed) Divorcing a Parent

posted 5 years ago in Relationships
Post # 3
Member
8818 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2013

@aquaelle:  send her a card wishing her a happy mother’s day, make sure the card is generic and doesn’t say anything mushy that you don’t mean.

i had a bipolar grandmother who was very mean to me.  i never sent ones saying she was the best grandma, etc because she wasn’t.

 

Post # 4
Member
256 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

You should read about borderline personality disorder.  Your mother might suffer from it. 

Post # 5
Member
9139 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL

Did she ever go to grief counseling?  Have you discussed her unacceptable behavior with her before?

I agree with cutting toxic people out of your life.  With a parent, child, or spouse I think you have to make sure the person knows the behavior is unacceptable from you and you have to have recommended she get help and she failed to get it.  Then you can cut off all ties with a clean slate.

My grandmother had severe mental health issues.  We tried to help her as much as we could but her behavior became increasingly volatile and destructive to the point that pretty much everybody avoided having contact with her.  At some point she has to want to save herself.

Post # 6
Member
2183 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 2011 - Florida Aquarium

I’ve done this! I didn’t see or speak to my mom from 15-19. I gave her another chance from 19-22. It didn’t work out. She is a manipulative, controlling, conniving woman that does not have my best interest at heart. She wasn’t invited to my wedding, and she hasn’t received a Mother’s Day card from me in years. I’m pregnant now, and I think I’ve decided I’ll send her an announcement card, but that’ll be it. I don’t expect/want anything from her. Point is, I know where you’re coming from. 

You have to do what’s best for you– and only you know what that is. 

In terms of your guilt, it’s important that you remind yourself that you’re doing what you need to be happy and healthy. You’re focusing on your own family, and ensuring that they are well cared for. Take comfort in that. 

Post # 7
Member
11233 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013

Big hugs for you. I don’t speak to my mother unless spoken to anymore. She’s very selfish, and it really sucked finally realizing that and slowly cutting her off. The rest of my family knows how she treats me, and my in laws are slowly hearing bits and pieces. Ending a bad relationship, any bad relationship, is hard, but necessary. You cannot allow someone to keep hurting you, no matter who they are.

Post # 8
Member
256 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

I am not saying that you should stay in contact with her because of this possibility.  You need to do what’s right for you.  If she does, in fact, have BPD, you’re better off staying away from your mother.  But knowing what causes her to act the way she does might make you feel better.  Regardless of her “diagnosis”, living with an emotionally abusive mother can have damaging repercussions, and it sounds like you’re doing the right thing for you and your children.  But I know personally how guilt-provoking it can be when you feel like you’re abandoning her.  You should think about seeing a therapist.  It really helps.

Post # 9
Member
9884 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

@aquaelle:  ((HUGS))  Your post has me in tears.  I don’t really have any advice but I am so in your corner.  I have (had) a toxic relationship with my father for years and, although I’ve never thought of cutting off communication with him as “divorce,” that seems like a good term for it.

He is now getting older and is sick and I’m getting a guilt trip from my aunt about not seeing him.  But he lives 4 hours away from me and has been abusive to me all my life.  I have no good memories of him.  While he provided a materially wealthy childhood for me, he was emotionally, verbally and physically abusive.  So I feel no bond with him. 

My mother-in-law, on the other hand, whom I’ve only known for a couple of years, has four children total, including my husband.  And I love her so dearly.  She is a sweet, kind, funny, adorable person whom everyone loves.  Because she is kind.  Because she is loving.  It is a joy to take care of her.  (She has CLL and heart disease).  Yesterday she said to me, “I’m sorry to be such a burden,” and I gave her a big hug and said, “You are not a burden!  You are a joy and a blessing and I love you so much!” 

Huge difference.  It’s so true – you reap what you sow.  I’ve always treated my own son with kindness, love and respect and we have a very close bond.

Parents should really think long and hard about how they treat their children when they’re young.  Kids grow up.  Maybe my dad needs me but I just don’t have the time right now.  I don’t feel guilty.  He has other people to care for him but his kids  (my sister, brother and me)are checked out because of how he treated us.  So, maybe we’re divorced, too.

Thank you for posting this, makes me think.

Post # 10
Member
1475 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2014

@ajillity81 +1

@aquaelle sorry you’re dealing with this, I can imagine how difficult it must be and since you have daughters of your own how much you want a good example and a good relationship for you and them and for them and their grandmother.

My only suggestion is that you perhaps look into therapy for yourself (sometimes these types of relationships damage you in ways you don’t realize) and maybe at some point your mom can join you and get the help that she needs if she is open to the idea.

At the end of the day she is and will always be your mother so even if you two aren’t going to have a good relationship I think its nice that you made sure your brothers are doing something for mothers day and I hope that you continue to honor her in whatever ways you can and whatever ways she may need your help in the future. Good luck to you in this difficult situation.

Post # 11
Member
9884 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

@aquaelle:  One other thing – I also did not invite my father to my wedding. 

Please take care of yourself and don’t feel guilty.  You’re doing the right thing.

Post # 12
Member
1189 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: February 2014

@aquaelle:  I have almost no relationship with my parents.  I moved across the country to ensure that I wouldn’t have a problem cutting my ties.  Very occasionally one will email to ask about my children, and I’ll give them the obligatory “They’re fine, thanks” and that’s it.  There was no falling out, they just made it abundantly clear my whole life that they didn’t care about me, that I was subpar to my sisters, and that I was jus a lot of trouble (I had depression and anxiety issues from a very young age).  There’s a lot that happened that isn’t pertinent in this discussion.

Regardless, that’s where things stand.  My children don’t really know them. I’m pregnant with my third child now and I doubt they’ll ever meet him.  I’m okay with that. The girls don’t miss them.  I don’t miss them.  I don’t send father’s day, mother’s day, birthday, etc cards.  I don’t send gifts.  I kind of look at it like I would with an old friend… I’ll be cordial if I see them on the street, but I’m not going out of my way to contact them.  

It probably sounds harsh to most people, as I get the “but they’re your parents!” comment quite a bit.  But to me, they aren’t.  They’re the people whose house I lived in growing up.  They were the source of a lot of pain and neglect.  They are not people who I care to be around.  

I also think that it’s no coincidence that after cutting them out of my life, I slowly began to climb out of my depression.  I am less stressed and anxious.  I feel less judged.  I feel less horrible about myself.  

For me, it’s worked out very well.  I’m not angry at them anymore.  I don’t wish them ill will.  I just don’t want to be around them.  I think at a certain point you come to a sense of peace about it, knowing you did the right thing for you.

Post # 13
Member
1585 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

I haven’t had to cut ties with my parents thankfully, but I cut my brother out of my life and 2 of my friends ought to be in the same boat as you (I wish they would follow your footsteps).

 

GOOD FOR YOU. Good luck.

 

It is so so hard to do this. They are a part of your family and your heart breaks because you are always told that nothing is more important than family. But you do not get to pick who your family is. So if you are born into one that doesn’t get you or doesn’t treat you right, you have to treat it like any other caustic relationship.

Unfortunately, the guilt doesn’t ever really go away. It gets easier to deal with, like the loss of a loved one, but sometimes you’ll think about it and it’ll just make you feel like scum of the earth all over again. But remember, you aren’t and you are making an incredibly difficult decision. No matter how you chose, you’d feel bad. You’re just taking the one that’ll make your future brighter.

Post # 14
Hostess
12199 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2015

@aquaelle:  the guilt is the worst. I think you have to keep reminding yourself that you have made a decision that is working for you right now. 

You aren’t responsible for her feelings, either. 

Post # 15
Member
4770 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

Don’t think you need to have a relationship, but have you considered getting her help?  If you think she’s depressed or something is wrong with her…I’m not sure how, but it seems like it could be useful.

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