Releasing the past in order to find myself

Friday, November 22, 2013


So, ironically, as I penned my post yesterday, NM crafted this (the third in an installment of "love messages she's crafted in the past two weeks)  to put on her FB page: 

"A daughter is one of the most beautiful gifts this world has to give.
-- Laurel Atherton

I have been blessed with the most talented, intelligent, warm hearted,loving and beautiful daughters possible. Love my (Jessie) and (NSIS)."

So.....a couple of things about this:

First, I'm sure those of you who are not emotionally connected to my mother see this as a huge pile of bullshit.  A PUBLIC statement of her "love" and "admiration" for her daughters meant to shine a big ole spotlight on NM.  I see it too and I'm sure you are right.  Unfortunately, it's not always that easy for me to separate her bullshit from my emotions about it. 

NM uses "blessed".  She is not religious.  At all.  Blessed is the word of choice for NM lately (and it appears a ton of others) who is imitating all the conservative, right wing people she knows. 

"Most talented, intelligent, warm hearted..." BLAH, BLAH, BLAH.  This same woman told me, about five years ago, that neither my sister and I lived up to our "potential" because we weren't making a ton of money.  She's told me and NSIS we are  smart (but it's a source of bitterness to her because she thinks she's "stupid".  She resents that it is "natural" for us).  She's never said out right I'm beautiful.  I know she clearly thinks NSIS is (I think NM would BE NSIS if she could).  Warm hearted?  Isn't this the same woman who says I don't love her enough and do enough for her?

The thing is that these things would be so lovely to hear from a mother.  She's already "collected" a ton of likes for it.  And I would love it so much if she actually meant any of this.  Or if she'd actually ever said it TO MY FACE.  If she really wanted to communicate these things to me, why doesn't she just tell me.  Privately?  Or personally?  Maybe she means all the shit she says, but somehow, when it's combined with schlepping for "likes" on FB, it looses any of it's meaning.

A few weeks ago,  I sent her a gift (long story).  Instead of thanking me by calling me, or sending a text, or a private message on FB, or an email, she PUBLICALLY thanked me on my FB wall.  Clearly, it was done for show. 

These kinds of things really make me crazy.  This two faced crap.  This overtly, open declarations of love for all to see.  And the private bitching, and whining, and covert manipulation.   It fooled me for years.  I would take these "tokens" of love as genuine.  Sometimes I still feel myself wanting to buy into this bullshit.  It'd be easier.  Maybe.  Just believe like all of the other sheep that she really loves and admires her "wonderful" daughters.  But then, when she purposely sets me up to hurt me, lies to me, tries to guilt and manipulate me into doing what she wants, ignores my feelings and turns attention that should be on me (or someone else) back to herself, acts out in jealousy, calls names, bitches, whines, and spews negativity, I'd be back in the same place.  Confused, stressed, sick, and hurt.  And ANGRY. 

I should add: I have not spoken with my sister (except very heated emails a few times) in over a year.  I am not interested, at the moment, in dealing with NSIS.  I've thought about it.  I've been trying to work out how to make a relationship with her work.  But I just don't see how to do it.  Any attempts I've made to communicate with her, she's turned into an abusive (very abusive) attack on me (and my family).  I wish it wasn't so, but I am really enjoying my peace away from her.

So, to be lumped into NM's big declaration of love with NSIS, really bugs the shit out of me.  As I eluded to in my last post, NM has always lumped me and NSIS together.  We are two halves of a whole to her.  Not individual people.  Not two grown, adult women.  After all, we are in our mid-30s.

The last part of the message that, I believe almost annoyed me the most, is the "my (Jessie) and (NSIS)" part.  MY?!?  We don't belong to her.  Do other mother's talk like that?  About their grown children?  Maybe I'd be over reacting if I had a normal mother, but that MY feels like a big attempt to (probably without her even thinking about it) express her "ownership" of us.  We are "HER" kids.  We belong to her.  That simple inclusion of "MY" just signifies to me how she will always think of us as something that is a part of her, something she needs to own, something she will never see as grown up, individual, adult women. 


  1. I make no bones about my mother being a psychopath and how much I hated it/her. After reading that drivel from yours I think I'll be sticking with my nutbag thank you very much!

    1. You make a good point, Q. See, so many people buy into this drivel and accept it as her being loving and kind and blah, blah, blah. It's so much harder to stick to the truth (that she is destructive and toxic) when other people don't see it. It's hard to remember that I am NOT the crazy one for seeing this behavior for the cheap crap that it is.
      I think having an "obvious" nutbag mother might be easier at times. Then I wouldn't always be questioning reality.

  2. The fact that it makes you angry is actually a good thing, it means you recognize that her behavior is sneaky, manipulative, and wrong. When we stop making excuses for our parents abysmal behavior is when we start to make progress in protecting ourselves and our children from them. Anger often catalyzes us into action, new boundaries, etc... I know the feeling of giving up the thought that there may be a chance of a reasonable relationship with a mother. It's tough at first, but then as time goes on it gets easier and more peaceful. We have only so many days on this planet, don't let them be polluted with toxic people in our lives. Focus on your spouse and children and enjoy the beauty there.
    Okay, I'll get off my soapbox now. Take care.

    1. Thanks for your thoughts, Anon. This has been quite the process of identifying my anger and now, using it to make healthy changes in my life. Got a ways to go, but I've come a long way too.

  3. This is exactly where I'm at with my mother. Ugh. I feel ya.

    1. Really, Bess? It's nice to know someone else deals with this kind of craziness. Do you blog?

    2. Yep. It's called One Foot in Front of the Other. Right now I'm thrilled that I know I won't see mother for Thanksgiving and I'm panicking that other family members might think I should be over my fight by Christmas and I'll have to re-explain and re-bow out for that holiday.

    3. I'll have to check that out!
      The holidays can be so hard and trapped with nastiness. I hope you can stick to your decision. Good luck.

  4. Oh gag me. In my opinion, your analysis of your NM's "love fest" on Facebook is spot-on. And I just wrote in your previous post about how this kind of public commentary works in two ways for your mother: 1. It makes HER look good (because she THINKS your "goodness" as daughters reflects on her "goodness" as a parent) and 2. It raises the bar for you to "shape up" and act accordingly. She's just publicly declared what her enormously high expectations are of you.

    1. Wow, I hadn't thought about it like that. That she is using US to reflect on her (I had thought about it more like she was trying to look like a good mom). I always forget the other angle: sucking NS from their kids' accomplishments. That's more MIL's style. NM rarely publically acknowledges that she thinks we've done something well. Although, know that I think about it, she likes to say I'm a "mini-NM" and that I parent very similarly to her (God help me if I do).
      It is also interesting to me that you would say that she has "enormously high expectations" of me. Those are just "typical" for me. I'm supposed to be all those things, all the time. BUT the irony is, although I can point to lots of positive about NSIS, I wouldn't say "loving" and "warm hearted" are amongst her better qualities. It's a little bit insulting that she would consider us equal in that respect, considering my sister has been anything but loving to many, many people. It's also interesting to me that she describes us in EXACTLY the same way. As usual, to her, we are a matched set of dolls.

    2. I am always, always, always struck by how complicated all of this is. Like any once act on the NM's part has a million individual bits to consider - there are multiple motivations, intentions, and objectives. NOTHING is straight forward. Everything is meant to play a part in some bigger game and there is no such thing as simple, even though I think that's part of what THEY do - try to make everything look simple (and innocent). Like, how much does it suck to have to take one phrase from one day and have to dissect it to the nth degree to figure out what angle your NM was trying to get at? And I know the game pretty well myself, I'm just so thankful it wasn't my mom I had to dissect in this way. And what really sucks is that I think, in order to have a relationship at all with these people, you HAVE to spend this time doing the dissections and constant analysis of their every move. It'd be too easy to get trapped or tricked if you didn't.

    3. Sounds like your NM is stepping up her game. She might have sensed that your behaviour is different towards her. It's amazing how they can "switch" styles if that's what gets you back to the "status quo" they want.

    4. Yes, the analyzing gets to be a pain in the ass. Luckily, I'm becoming less and less concerned about what her angle is and I just don't take anything at face value with her. It is largely due to my increasing emotional detachment from her.
      And I think she is definitely switching up her game. Trying to suck me back in with "niceness". Too bad, for her, I'm not falling for it.

  5. "when it's combined with schlepping for "likes" on FB, it looses any of it's meaning."

    That is it with messages like this - why don't you say this to my face and treat me like this. In ways it feels like a cover her ass move. My friends have done this - no one can say anything bad because everyone is on Facebook it somehow becomes digital proof that they are 'good' and do 'good' even when there is nothing tangible to support it. I don't know if this is the case but if there was an incident she could get 'protection' later on? One 'friend' does this often.

    I get really annoyed with 'my' statements as well. When clearly it is not needed to distinguish mine vs yours. Every time it really gets me.

    I think you did a great job seeing the holes in her speech and being aware of how you felt. xx TR

    1. Thanks, TR.
      I definitely think she is trying to score points to look 'good', should anyone question her. She portrays loving grandma to all my relatives on her side (although, I'm sure they know better.)
      I think FB has really skewed the ways people interact. Presents phony fronts and bullshit "proof" of who they think they are. I, mainly, limit my "friends" to people who I genuinely know and like. But I have a few family members who use it to stage their own personal creation of their lives.

  6. The "MY" in that message reflects her inherent covetousness-of all positive mirrors/reflections of HER. Anything good-whether it's love, admiration, respect, approval etc. only flows one way and that's TOWARDS her. And what larger "Stage" could a CB "mother" ask for than social media?
    She covets her grandchildren-but only insofar as she can use them to reflect on her as the all-good "CBgma" in her "Grandparent Olympics/Competition." In fact, she deeply resents your children because she operates from a Scarcity Paradigm: Since you obviously love your kids, that means there's LESS of your love for HER. Concepts such as Love, Respect, Positive Regard etc. are essentially *Finite Commodities* that are bought and sold like Monopoly Money: "You, Jessie and your family exist most fundamentally to make me look good-and damnit, you BETTER-or else!" By placing you in the same category as your CBSister, she's leveling the playing field between the two of you-least you start to believe your decades of efforts on her behalf meant anything more than what she expects you to do-and CONTINUE doing. Nice slam she managed to insert in that comment! She's cashing in her "Mini-ME" (finite) Approval of you and telling you-again, I note-your value and worth to her as a "DD" has slipped substantially-BEWARE, Jessie! ;) You're treading on your CB Mother's thin ice of "Approval!" And note the flow from her Scarcity Paradigm and how it results in Competition with everyone, including you? If there's only "so much" and she has to have it ALL, the result is Competition in every sphere with every one and further underlines her Covetousness and Jealousy.
    Why "Thank You" publically instead of privately? Not only is there's no Supply in doing so but to acknowledge your thoughtfulness directly would undercut her "Position" as The Alpha towards whom there is the Expectation that rightfully, again, all positives flow towards HER in her Scarcity Paradigm: She has to have it ALL-it is ALL her Due, her Right as the faux "Matriarch" of her faux "Family." (Despite the reality she blew up her "Family" and relinquished her assumed "Right" to be called and treated as a REAL "Mother" decades ago.)
    It's a real positive to see you getting pissed-instead of allowing her to continue pissing on your leg and telling you it's raining ;) You're doing great, Jessie! I know this part really, really sucks but it's necessary. I'm sorry for all the pain and BS, but I do know out of all of this will come so much more for you and your family. It's about impossible to "see" when you're in the trenches and making profound changes internally as well as externally.
    This is courage in action, Jessie. You have always possessed far more than you ever could have imagined. Once you open the Door to Awareness, everything changes-because it has to and IMO, this is what you're experiencing now.
    Why would you NOT be furious? Spending a lifetime trying to fill the un-fillable, trying to fix the unfixable, always believing that somehow the "Problem" was YOU and finding out it never WAS is damn infuriating. Please bear in mind Grieving involves Anger. Always.
    And all of this is taking place against the very real demands of your daily life: Pretty spectacular, Jessie! I hope you at least occasionally find the time to reflect on all the hard work you've done and are continuing to do: At this point it feels sucky, exhausting and thankless but you know there's a more authentic way to be and live and you're doing it, one tentative step that solidifies and leads to and yet another. You're finding your confidence and competence, your dignity and worth as a human being despite decades of being selfishly and proactively deprived and sabotaged of such by a CB "Mother."