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Switch to Forum Live View Not so Happy Mother's Day
9 years ago  ::  May 08, 2009 - 12:24PM #1
melzoom
Posts: 583

How do you work through all the complicated emotions that happen on a not-so-much Mother's Day?  


If you're estranged from your parents?


Had an abusive mom that you keep away from (mostly) due to needing to maintain boundaries?


Moms who are estranged from their kids?


 


 


 

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9 years ago  ::  May 08, 2009 - 12:29PM #2
melzoom
Posts: 583

I have to say that picking out cards for Mother's Day is always tough.  My stepmom is an active alcoholic and I've never been really close to her.  My mom... I love her very much but have to keep strict boundaries with her for my health and general well-being.  

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9 years ago  ::  May 08, 2009 - 2:20PM #3
Arianna
Posts: 1,317

Mel,


I completely understand how you are feeling, and thanks for the thread. How do we ''get a card''.....their so mushy gushy, thanks for always being there, when I hurt, you helped, you taught me so much....BARF. I have been battling all week whether to send a card, and if I did, how would I sign it. I 'm SICK of all the Mother's Day commercials...can't wait till they are OVER.  After years of not talking, talking, not talking, not talking, you get the picture. I can HONESTLY look in the mirror and say I was ALWAYS there for my mother as early as I can remember, always took her side in her 5 divorces, took care of her, I had to come home, make her bed, have dinner ready, laundry. The times we were speaking, I always ''catered'' to her. She always received what she asked for on Mother's Day, because I would ask. Not once on my Birthday/Christmas has she EVER asked what I wanted, AGAIN, ALL ABOUT HER.I can say when we did hang out, we had so much fun together, we would say we were going to the store, and return 5 hours later, those are the only times I miss. When my brother passed, she came to tell me/get me, I called my DR for some XANAX, which really made her mad, oh well. ASfter 3 days of consoling her, when I finally LOST IT, she told me to '''GET A GRIP''...WTF I called my best friend to come pick me up, I wanted out of there as fast as I could. On his Birthday after he died, I called crying incontrollably, her response to me...''GET OVER IT''. I drank heavily for a year, just to go to sleep, then one day, I totally lost it, I was a no show at my job and I drove crying bawling the whole way there,, and drove to find my brother's grave. At this point, I guess I had a ''nervous breakdown'' and THANKFULLY my job gave me a leave of absence to go to counselling, what I learned was not ONLY did I lose a brother, I lost a SON, HOW TRUE, HOW TRUE. BINGO, it all made sense, that's EXACTLY how I felt. I was the one to get him help, I knew something was off...I called my mom and said, he's not right, he NEEDS help...he was diagnosed with schizophrenia, in out of hospitals, mant med changes, he was a fing zombie...I had always had more dreams for him then myself, after all he was my son, when he passed, I didn't BLAME him. He once told me, I'd rather die than live with the side effects of the meds. So in my grieving process, which I thought for a year he would show back up...when I finally got help, I was STUCK, I couldn't get ANGRY at him, I WOULDN'T want to live like that. It took me a long time to get angry with him, I understood. My Brother WAS ''the apple of my eye''. Personally, I don't think I've been the same since, he took a piece of me that CANNOT EVER be re-placed. And not once, would my family ever mention his name, I wanted to talk about him. I'll never forget the Thanksgiving after he died, we were gathered at the table, my brother and I always got the leg of the turkey, I took my leg, lifted it up and said Here's to you BRO, they all looked at me like I was crazy, and of course the subject was immediately changed. Not once, was I EVER allowed to talk about him.


I'm SORRY I broke protocol, and didn't break up my post, guess I got carried away. Please do forgive me.


So, Mel, can you do a e-card, or pick a SIMPLE card that just says Happy Mother's Day, or, if you can't find one, How about a blank card that you can write, Happy Mother's Day. I am choosing to do a simple e-card, but not sure how do sign it.


I do miss my grandmother, and will wish her a Happy Mother's Day 1st thing when I wake up, as she is in Heaven. I will choose to ignore the day, I am a Mother to all my wonderful 4-legged pets, and for that I thank God.


Mel, what will you do? I'd like to know how you will sign your card...as I am still undecided.


((((Mel))))


I understand.

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9 years ago  ::  May 08, 2009 - 2:28PM #4
Msindependent
Posts: 1

I didn't have this issue with Mother's Day, but always Father's Day when I was a kid.  He's dead now, but even now I try to celebrate those people who did parent me, I celebrate the fact that he was there to add his DNA to the mix when it was needed....and sometimes I use it as a time to try to heal.  When I was about 26 or so I had the funeral for him that I never got to attend on Father's Day.  I wrote him a long letter and took it to the river, read it aloud and then burned it and let the ashes be washed away.  It went a long way to really finding forgiveness and moving on.  I like Father's Day now.  It reminds me how I grew that day and how much better I feel since letting him go.

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9 years ago  ::  May 08, 2009 - 2:49PM #5
Arianna
Posts: 1,317

MsIndependant,


I liked your post...maybe something I could do the same thing concerning my mom. WELCOME to to the BB community!


The post on my mom is just the 1st edition....I have 2 more to add, will do so later.


BTW, I have Father's Day next month......that's another story in itself.


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9 years ago  ::  May 08, 2009 - 5:17PM #6
Therese Borchard
Posts: 141

Thanks, Mel, for starting this thread. It's funny, I got a mother's day card from my mom, and I thought it was very sweet ... but then I thought about it more, and it pretty much said, "wow. motherhood sucks, and I am SO glad not to be there anymore, but best of luck to you!" okay, it wasn't that bad, but it did kind of hit me in the gut, so much so that eric said, "wow. she really didn't enjoy it. did she." and i felt that familiar hole. 


 


I too think about you and so many other of my friends without kids, and I realize that holidays like this probably make your pain worse. So just know I'm praying for you this weekend. And all of you who have less than perfect relationships with your moms or your kids.


 


xo t

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9 years ago  ::  May 08, 2009 - 5:28PM #7
Weeble75
Posts: 503

Mel, I can't claim to have as severe of a rift with my mother as I do with yours, but we have had an on-again off-again estrangement over the last several years.


I can't buy her a "You're The Greatest Mom In The Whole Wide World" card in good conscience because my heart wouldn't be in it. It'd be a lie. But I *can* buy her an "I Love You, Mom" card with all honesty. I do care for her, and want the best for her, despite what she does that hurts me. To have that attitude doesn't depend on what she does. It depends on the approach I choose to take toward her as a person.


That's what is working for me. May you get some ideas from my approach that you can implement in good conscience.


God bless,


Mike/Weeble75

Weebles Wobble But They Don't Fall Down
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9 years ago  ::  May 08, 2009 - 5:53PM #8
Weeble75
Posts: 503

Arianna, as a bereaved parent myself, I can relate to the kinds of feelings you must have been experiencing. I lost my son in 2000 from leukemia when he was 8. Fortunately, my family didn't try any kind of "James doesn't exist" tricks. They're not that kind of people. I don't think they could have gotten away with it, anyway--once I get talking about him, you can't shut me up!


If you haven't done so already, I would suggest that you spend some time consciously walking the path of the bereaved parent. Spend some time with the nearest chapter of the Compassionate Friends ( www.compassionatefriends.org ) or the Bereaved Parents of the USA ( www.bereavedparentsusa.org ). You may find help in putting the pieces together and also be able to do any grieving you need to in a safe place.


I'd specifically suggest that you visit the BPUSA site and read the "Newly Bereaved" page. It was written to help parents who have recently lost a child to put their feelings into perspective (basically, the message is "yes, things seem weird, but this is a weird situation--so it's normal for this weird situation. It's really OK to be thinking and feeling these things."). As for your "nervous breakdown", I had one coincidentally with the loss of my son (and there were other major league stressors at that time--as if I NEEDED more) which put me in my present condition. It's not unusual. In 2005, the "New England Journal of Medicine" published an article about a Danish study of bereaved parents which showed that for at LEAST the first five years after the loss of a child (whether the child was in childhood, adolescence or adulthood), there was a markedly higher risk of needing psychiatric hospitalization. It's that traumatic--of course, you know that already.


(Note to Arianna and all; I have the NEJM article in PDF format--if you'll send me your email address either on this forum or as a private message, I'll be glad to send you a copy. Or I can send a copy to Therese or anyone else willing to be the hand-off person and you can ask them, whichever way you find most comfortable.)


I hope you find this helpful.


God bless,


Mike/Weeble75

Weebles Wobble But They Don't Fall Down
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9 years ago  ::  May 08, 2009 - 7:01PM #9
Froggyk
Posts: 33

I too spent time estranged from my mother - at times from my whole family. Shopping for the right Mother's Day card was always tough, but I did it because I knew it would mean something to her, even when we weren't even speaking to each other. She was an alcoholic and drug addict and I needed the distance to protect myself from the insanity that went along with that, but I never wanted to punish her.


Until now.


She's passed - been gone several years - and in the last year I'm finally giving myself permission to be angry over what a lousy mother she was. Some days I'm raging and some days I'm stuffing it all back down because I feel so guilty about being angry with my mother. I can say, when I let the anger be - when I don't stuff it - I'm not nearly as depressed and as uncomfortable as the anger is I'm able to be more present in my today life. But still, it's hard to admit that some days I downright hate my mother.


So what to do Mel? When I sent cards I usually sent the kind that simply say Happy Mother's Day and let it go at that. And like already mentioned, I always call my grandmother (she's still alive, and I adore her). But I'd rather the holiday just went away...


Karen

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9 years ago  ::  May 08, 2009 - 7:32PM #10
melzoom
Posts: 583

I don't know...  I don't know what to do.


I do brunch with my Mother-in-Law and then drive across town to see my grandmother.  I've learned that my mother is better when she is around her mom, so I try to always have my grandmother's house be the place we see each other.


My cards always stick to the humorous kind.  I sign it with a heart and an 'M'.


There are times when I have an incredible connectedness to my mom.... rarely, but they happen.  She doesn't see my depression as a chronic illness and doesn't take the time to learn anything about it. Some of the hurtful things are from ignorance.  Some are simply because she knows how to hit me where it hurts. She says she loves me sometimes in fits of sappiness, but her words at other times contradict anything things she  said.


I have such a hard time with this.  

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