Visiting mom!

Ziza

New Here
My mother is currently my main known trigger! I am sure there are others but I'm not aware of them yet! She is 80+ and lives 60 miles away from me. My dad has passed away and she is alone with a nasty room mate! She abused me mainly emotionally although she also hit me but not as much as my dad did! and neglected me starting at 9! Before 9 starting at 5 she had made me her confidant and would tell me about my dad's infidelities and say he didn't love us! Needless to say, they both royally screwed me up! I became rebellious and spent my life hurting and hating myself. I was never allowed to be a child!

My problem is that she wants me to go visit her! She wants me to call her! I don't do what she expects, but I feel guilty because she is old and not abusive now, unless I let her! I've established boundaries with her so she isn't calling me every day asking me to do this and that for her anymore. But maybe once a month I call her to check up on her, she always says how much she misses me and how much she loves me! My inner child gets triggered around her that's the main reason I don't go around her. I get really bad anxiety when I am around her!

There is a part of me that thinks I should spend more time with her before she passes! But I want to not be triggered by her! I wish I could see her and be OK! But I don't know how! Any ideas on how to not get triggered?
 

scout86

MyPTSD Pro
I had a relationship a little like that with my mother. For me, at least, what was going on was that the PTSD part of my brain confused "then" and "now" a lot. I had to remind myself that "now" she was a little old lady who really had no power over me other than what I choose to give her. That didn't work perfectly, but it helped. I seriously doubt you'll ever have a great relationship with her. People who are narcissists tend not to change so they will ALWAYS be difficult. She's always going to want things on her terms. If guilt was her weapon of choice, it will continue to be. I think spending time with her is an nice impulse, but don't expect something she can't give. (Like being a "normal" mother.) The last few years of her life, I was a little more comfortable around my mother because I focused on thinking of her as "the crazy little old lady who lived in the neighborhood when I was growing up. She was kind of mean, but she just lived in the neighborhood I grew up in." The "part" of you that finds her triggering will have to learn that she's not the threat she was, but the "part" that wants a nice mother also has to learn that's not the family you were born into. Fortunately, you're a grown up now and don't really NEED a mother.

Welcome to the forum! (Sorry I didn't have a more cheerful comment.)
 
P

Pili214

My mother is currently my main known trigger! I am sure there are others but I'm not aware of them yet! She is 80+ and lives 60 miles away from me. My dad has passed away and she is alone with a nasty room mate! She abused me mainly emotionally although she also hit me but not as much as my dad did! and neglected me starting at 9! Before 9 starting at 5 she had made me her confidant and would tell me about my dad's infidelities and say he didn't love us! Needless to say, they both royally screwed me up! I became rebellious and spent my life hurting and hating myself. I was never allowed to be a child!

My problem is that she wants me to go visit her! She wants me to call her! I don't do what she expects, but I feel guilty because she is old and not abusive now, unless I let her! I've established boundaries with her so she isn't calling me every day asking me to do this and that for her anymore. But maybe once a month I call her to check up on her, she always says how much she misses me and how much she loves me! My inner child gets triggered around her that's the main reason I don't go around her. I get really bad anxiety when I am around her!

There is a part of me that thinks I should spend more time with her before she passes! But I want to not be triggered by her! I wish I could see her and be OK! But I don't know how! Any ideas on how to not get triggered?
I am in a similar situation. If you think she is a narcissistic, like my mother, then you should cut her out if you can. Stay away from anyone who spends their lives manipulating others, and who causes so much pain that you are triggered , she is persona non grata. I’m not triggered by my mother anymore, she is weak at 84, but she ruined every friendship that she has had, including friends that she had for 50-60 years, people who were like aunts and uncles to me. I wont forgive her for because she has no remorse or empathy and she never will. My brother will be stuck looking after her when that time comes. If you were her victim and you have siblings, then let them deal with her. Keep mean spirited people out of your life, without becoming a total hermit.
 

Movingforward10

MyPTSD Pro
My mother is currently my main known trigger! I am sure there are others but I'm not aware of them yet! She is 80+ and lives 60 miles away from me. My dad has passed away and she is alone with a nasty room mate! She abused me mainly emotionally although she also hit me but not as much as my dad did! and neglected me starting at 9! Before 9 starting at 5 she had made me her confidant and would tell me about my dad's infidelities and say he didn't love us! Needless to say, they both royally screwed me up! I became rebellious and spent my life hurting and hating myself. I was never allowed to be a child!

My problem is that she wants me to go visit her! She wants me to call her! I don't do what she expects, but I feel guilty because she is old and not abusive now, unless I let her! I've established boundaries with her so she isn't calling me every day asking me to do this and that for her anymore. But maybe once a month I call her to check up on her, she always says how much she misses me and how much she loves me! My inner child gets triggered around her that's the main reason I don't go around her. I get really bad anxiety when I am around her!

There is a part of me that thinks I should spend more time with her before she passes! But I want to not be triggered by her! I wish I could see her and be OK! But I don't know how! Any ideas on how to not get triggered?
Ah, I feel this a lot! The constant guilt from never being able to do enough or be enough for your mum, and blaming myself for it each and every time.

My T and I are working on acceptance of what my mum is like (a narcissist), and creating healthy boundaires. And responding to her games, emotional manipulation, with no emotion and my boundaires, and questions back rather than answering her (emotionally manipulative) questions.

Do what works for you.
Know that whatever you do, it won't be enough for her. So you need to find a way that is something you can tolerate and manage.
If you do what she wants, how can you remain you and keep your boundaires and emotional health?

I have drastically limited my contact with my parents. The backlash from them is hard. But I now phone about once a month and see them about twice a year. I haven't been to their home for coming up to 2 1/2 years. I might go next month. Don't know yet.

I now see them for who they are and I don't allow myself to get drawn in to their games. I take a step back. I take a deep breath. I don't volunteer information about myself, so I don't open up avenues for criticism from them.

But I'm still working on it all. It's hard work. Old habits die hard!
 

Sideways

Moderator
My parents aren't getting any easier to be around. But, they hit a point somewhere along the line, and I realised they were both old.

I've had old people in my life - they become more and more like little children the older they get. Especially with boundaries... they aren't great at respecting boundaries. It's often not malicious, it's just...they're old.

And the way I interact with them now that they're old? Is more about me, and my relationship with myself. Because they're old, and frightened of a lot of things, and no, they aren't going to reapect my boundaries bery well, because of that fear.

I choose to interact on my terms, doing what I can tolerate. Because of my relationship with me. Dealing with fraility in others isn't easy. Even if the water under the bridge can be left there. But I'm measuring my humanity at this point, not theirs. And that's how I choose what I will and won't do.
 

PlainJane

Moderator
My parents aren't getting any easier to be around. But, they hit a point somewhere along the line, and I realised they were both old.

I've had old people in my life - they become more and more like little children the older they get. Especially with boundaries... they aren't great at respecting boundaries. It's often not malicious, it's just...they're old.

And the way I interact with them now that they're old? Is more about me, and my relationship with myself. Because they're old, and frightened of a lot of things, and no, they aren't going to reapect my boundaries very well, because of that fear.

UGH! All of this is true and it sucks.
 
That guilt is hard to deal with but you wouldn't have those feelings if she had been the mom she should have been. Perhaps you need to decide if it will cause you more emotional harm if you do see her and if you can recover from it. I flew out to see my mom a few months ago because she was ill. I had anxiety before I went and since I returned, I've had bad dreams. My husband has told me many times that he wakes up in the middle of the night and I'll be sitting up talking in my sleep.
Thought I was strong enough to deal with it but obviously not.
I hope you're a stronger person and that you'll make a healthy choice for Yourself.
 

Ziza

New Here
PTSD part of my brain confused "then" and "now" a lot
I feel like my inner child is still angry at her. I don't know why she can't let it go!

My parents aren't getting any easier to be around. But, they hit a point somewhere along the line, and I realised they were both old.
My dad passed away in 2016 and I didn't feel anything at the time. But my relationship with him had recovered a lot since he spent time with me in my adult life! But my mom has never gone shopping with me, I used to beg her to go to the movies with me and she wouldn't go!, we NEVER had a good relationship. Her age has actually made it easier in a way because she is more humble than before. As far as feeling guilty because she is old, I do! But my inner child is angry and gets triggered when I see her! I wish I could help my inner child not to be so hurt and angry from her. Maybe it's a process. Maybe it takes time, but time is running out!
 

scout86

MyPTSD Pro
I feel like my inner child is still angry at her. I don't know why she can't let it go!
That seems like that's a pretty normal "child" reaction. She wasn't the mother a child needed or deserved. Anger is one of the potential responses to that. The way I look at it, that "child" is part of you, but it isn't ALL of you. The feeling is legitimate. No harm in acknowledging that. No harm in feeling it either. The thing is, being angry isn't actually going to change anything. If I'm understanding what your mother is like correctly, she's not going to CARE if you're angry. At least not in a way that's going to change her behavior for the better. Most likely she'd not capable of wanting to change for "the better". She just doesn't see the world that way. Your inner child can be angry till the cows come home and a real narcissist isn't going to change. I think maybe the most useful thing to do is work on dealing with the fact that you're not going to get the reactions you want from her. Fortunately, you're an adult now and can parent yourself.
 

ladee

MyPTSD Pro
Agree that it is up to you to find ways to heal the anger. And just a side note. I've had to work on many things after someone died. I didn't have the chance while they were alive for many reasons. So no need to put pressure on yourself to hurry up and get this done before she dies. You will still have time. And in the case of my father, a lot more healing went on for me after he died. I didn't feel that pressure as I did when he was alive. So you have plenty of time.

And you have to give you all that she didn't. And it is a process. Some of what I'm hearing from you is not just anger but grief that you just didn't get what you needed. And feeling protective about your little girl that missed out on so much. I read a long time ago, it's never too late for a happy childhood. You and your T can work on this. Ask for suggestions and hope you are able to speak freely about your feelings with your T.

Most of us here didn't get what we needed in our childhood. But I have found that the people here are more compassionate because of this lack in our lives. And the hard work it takes to heal crappy abusive childhoods.

When someone shares as you have, it always feels like you are ready to do the healing work. But be kind to yourself. You don't have to get it done before she dies. Take that pressure off of yourself.
 
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