(Closed) feeling hopeless, LONG

posted 5 years ago in Emotional
Post # 2
Member
1286 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2018 - Omaha, NE

How old are you, and do you live with your parents?

Post # 4
Member
6943 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: April 2016

Can you describe more of the problems between your SO and your parents? Like…do they just not like him? 

If you already live 40 minutes away from them…I guess I’m just confused. How often do you see them? 

Post # 6
Member
7795 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

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koalaboo:  Do you think your parents would like anyone with whom you were in a relationship or do you think it’s just him?

Regardless, you are a self-supporting 24 year-old and you need to enforce some boundaries. Your parents are your parents and as such deserve your respect but that doesn’t mean they deserve to control every aspect of your adult life. They are the ones who sound manipulative and controlling.

Post # 7
Member
6943 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: April 2016

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koalaboo:  Okay I vaguely remember a post about this before. I know you said you don’t want to cut off contact with them, which I get, but you need to set up some boundaries. STOP talking to them about all your plans and where you’re going and when, etc. Don’t give them that information. If they ever start belittling your BF to you, just disengage from them. What I mean is: if you’re talking on the phone simply say you’re not going to listen to this and then HANG UP. If you’re in person say you’re not going to listen to this and then LEAVE. 

I second the PP in wondering if this is a specific issue they have with your BF or would they not like anyone you’re dating?

Post # 8
Member
7439 posts
Busy Beekeeper

This sounds like how my parents were about 12 yrs ago, when I was 19. Granted, they were supporting me financially at this time so that gave them a little more “right” to butt into my life like that…but still it was heinous. My parents are very religious and traditional, and when they discovered things like a) I went to an all-night party with alcohol that my long term boyfriend also attended or b) my boyfriend visited me at my college and stayed in my dorm — they completely flipped out. They said they “didnt know who I was anymore” and that my boyfriend is bad news because he clearly doesn’t respect them or me if he would spend the night with me when we are unmarried!

Very dark times. Parents and I hit rock bottom my sophomore year of college over something I will not share on here, but involved an enormous violation of my privacy, and following that was a period of years where we were on ok terms, but I basically just hid my entire life from them. I was supporting myself financially by then and living far away, so they had no idea what I was up to on a day to day basis. 

Fast forward to the present–my mother actually apologized to me last weekend for this period in our lives. Not in a very specific way, but she said she is sorry she used to be so judgmental about my life and my choices, and she realizes now that was really harmful, and that she needed to let go a lot sooner. 

Anyway I dunno what to tell you other than I have been there and I know how hard it is. One thing that helped me was living far away from my parents. 40 min drive is not far enough IMO. I love them, but they need to be at least a flight away, or there would be no hope of establishing meaningful boundaries. Other than that, you just need to have conviction in your choices even if they go against what your parents want you to do. Easier said than done, I know!

Post # 10
Member
2597 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

It sounds like you have helicopter parents, or parents who can’t accept your independence. THey might struggle with the fact that their identity as parents has to change, especially if you have been the center of their lives for so long–not that that’s YOUR responsibility to fix, but that might be what’s going on emotionally. 

Nothing you’ve said so far suggests that their interpretations are reasonable. You don’t sound like you’re a victim of abuse or being taken advantage–you are just making choices that are different from what they would want or expect for you. You should be able to make these decisions (including poor ones!) yourself–it is absolutely your choice. 

But–and I say this with love–YOU have to assert yourself as this adult, and one of the things that you need to be doing is stop putting so much weight on their approval. I know that is easier said than done but…who cares if they think you shouldn’t drive up to VT? Gonna do it anyway! Who cares if the BF moves in temporarily? Your name on the lease, your rent! Now, also to do this, you must resist the pull to revert back to your old roles of parent-child, and that means that calling your mom to ask her for her special get better soup and then feeling ‘hurt’ when she (yes, immaturely) refuses to give it to you? No. Stop. You get online and you make your own soup from now on. 

And the best coup de grace? STOP ARGUING. It doesn’t matter, ultimately, what they think you should do about your wisdom teeth recovery–you get to do what you want to do. So whenever they give you their disapproval, you need to convey to them some version of, “Thank you for your opinion, but I DON’T CA-ARE!” (in a nice, not bitchy way). Arguing with them puts you right back into your role as a child, in which you’re giving their opinions credence simply by disagreeing. So you can smile and hear them out and then just continually assert your rights as an adult: “Okay, well, if anything changes, I’m glad that you’re still willing to take care of me. I’ll let you know how the operation goes, or have BF call you if I’m too drugged out. Thanks!” That is, continue to be pleasant, continue to give your parents the opportunity to come around, but don’t give them the satisfaction of arguing anymore.  

I grew up with my parents telling us kids, “You can have an opinion, but it’s ours that counts.” That’s now YOUR motto, just in reverse. 

Post # 14
Member
7795 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

View original reply
koalaboo:  I am a parent and my oldest child is a freshman in college. I do not receive twice-weekly phone calls from him, nor do I expect to. Some weeks we communicate several times. Some weeks it’s just a text. And that’s fine–he’s a young man figuring out how to be independent, something I encourage.

I share this because if twice-weekly phone calls from you, in your first year of medical school, will require your parents to adjust and may cause harassing texts or emails YOU need to cut the apron strings. It may be ugly for a little while, but if they want a relationship with you they will have to come to terms with the fact that you are an adult and treat you accordingly.

Post # 15
Member
1882 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

View original reply
koalaboo:  I remember you. I think your parents will hate anyone you date if it means you make decisions and live life without incorporating their wishes into every single step. Your parents are essentially fighting you for control over your life. At 24, you’re a financially independent adult, and it’s not healthy for them to be this intensely involved. I agree with the PP who says you must stop explaining your decisions to them and making them feel like they have a say. Share less information about your relationship and life, and don’t start explaining and justifying yourself when they start grilling you. If they start receiving few details and a non-reaction to most of their angry rants, eventually they will run out of steam.  

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