Was I too harsh on my mom?

posted 11 months ago in Relationships
Post # 2
2806 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2018

caligirl3 :  My mom is similar and I’ve snapped on her before and felt like a total asshole as well, the feeling SUCKS. I would apologize to her and try to explain your feelings in a more calm and sensitive manner, in person. 

Post # 3
7175 posts
Busy Beekeeper

I can’t say whether you were too harsh – but she definitely took it hard. From what it sounds like, maybe she needed that bit of tough love. You’ve already brought up once, and it didn’t seem to get through. I think chatting with her once she’s calmed down is a good idea though. “Sorry if I seemed harsh earlier, but we’ve already talked about this and I feel like you’re still … which makes me feel …”


Post # 4
793 posts
Busy bee

I wouldn’t feel too bad. She may not be aware that’s shes doing it, but the guilt-tripping is emotional blackmail and it’s not healthy. It’s totally fine for her to miss you … it is not fine to send sad face emojis and joke that you don’t love her anymore (whaa??!). That’s not an emotionally mature response to a daughter being busy with day-to-day life. 

Post # 5
4729 posts
Honey bee

Speaking as someone who is probably around your mother’s age, you were not too harsh. Your mother needs to rediscover herself outside of her identity as mother. I’m always very wary of intruding on my kids lives since I don’t want to be perceived as the smothering type. 

Post # 6
948 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2019 - City, State

You said what you said and you can’t take it back but you can certainly tell her your sorry for the way it came out. Your feeling are valid. One can only take so much of the same thing over and over again especially when they have been told that it’s kind of annoying (not your words). Now you feel shitty about how you acted towards her because she didn’t listen the first time. I would just tell her you are sorry how it came out but this is how you really feel.

Post # 7
3510 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: January 2021

It sounds like you are rightfully annoyed and you let it get the best of you for a moment. It doesn’t sound like you said anything particularly mean that can’t be taken back – just took a tone of frustration. It’s no big deal. Just tell your Mom you are sorry for snapping next time you talk to her, but that you are getting frustrated with her seemingly constant need to hang out, while refusing to try out anything new and interesting instead.

The amount of time that you already spend with her is a lot more than most adults spend with their parents. She needs to acknowledge that and respect your time.

Post # 8
1077 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 1983

It is not your job to be the center of your mother’s life right now. She needs to find an interest–volunteering, hobby, course, friends, job, activity–that isn’t dependent on you.

Post # 9
5183 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: January 2017

Could you schedule a longstanding weekly activity with her? Perhaps a couple times a week so she has something to look forward to and knows that she will be seeing you then 100%? Like mall walking/shopping on Wednesdays and a Sunday brunch, etc?

Post # 10
582 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2018

caligirl3 :  I think the tough love might be necessary. 

She is a grown woman with grown children.  She needs to find her identity outside of her children at this point. 

My grandmother is 85 and is so busy with travelling, volunteering, activities, social groups etc it’s hard to get a hold of her!  Your mother has absolutely no excuse other than she wants to hold on to her mother identity.  I think you need to sit her down and not apologise unless you yelled at her or said something you want to take back.  Instead, discuss some clear boundaries, including how far you are willing to go to help her find some activities.  She will probably cry and sniffle, but she needs to hear it. 

Post # 11
265 posts
Helper bee

I don’t think you were out of line. My mom is widowed, lives alone, and has a tough time making new friends because of her social anxiety. My sister and I were definitely raised to be her social representatives lol. She is mostly respectful of our time but because she has only the two of us to “unload” on, she will keep us on the phone FOREVER repeating herself over and over.


Once she was on a very long monologue while I waited to the end of the story to tell her some important news but by then she was ready to say goodbye and get off the phone. I let her go and texted her “I passed the Bar exam mom, thanks for asking.” She was mortified and felt bad for a long time but I feel like I needed new to bring to light that she was getting to be a little burdensome. No one likes making their mom feel bad, but you did not do the wrong thing. If you and your mom are as close as you say, you will move past it and be just fine.

Post # 12
6638 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2016

It sounds like your mother needs some business and you have been more than generous in attempting to help her find her “thing” but she has taken that as another way of getting your attention rather than actively looking for something to fill her time and inspire feelings of passion and creativity and aliveness in herself.

What she’s doing is being an energy vampire and, if she can’t get the kinder hints you’ve tried to give her, then she should feel badly about her behavior. If she were to explain to someone else what she was doing, I cannot imagine that she would feel good about it (nor about how it makes you feel OR about how it makes her look). Basically, your mother is going “I feel empty (or lonely or bored or whatever) and I don’t know what to do with myself. Rather than addressing the discomfort that feeling gives me and finding new activities and passions at this point in my life, I’m going to reach out to people I love and get some attention from them. They owe me their attention since I gave them so much of my energy and attention for so many years. And yes, they have told me that they do not appreciate my methods, but I’m going to ignore them and just keep doing it anyway. Because that’s easier for me and they really do owe me.”

Your mother needs to go on her own Hero(ine)’s Journey and rediscover herself and you cannot do that with her or for her.

Post # 13
138 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: City, State

It sounds like she is flipping your relationship so you have the parent role. Does she have a history of parentifying you? Or is this a new thing? It could indicate an issue with her mental health if it’s something that is usual for her. If it’s new, she could just be lonely and unsure about where she stands in her relationship with you now your an adult. You have the right to set boundaries and enforce them. I would be careful of giving into it because you could get into an unhealthy relationship where she expects you to meet all her needs. If she starts giving you the silent treatment or reacting strangly to your boundaries, ask her to see a mental health professional.

Post # 14
674 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: January 2005

Mom sounds like she might be going through a bout of depression. Perhaps she isnt trying to guilt you. But find her way back to herself.

Being unable to engage in outside activities is a huge red flag. 


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