My Mom never calls anyone in the family.

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My mother never calls anyone in the family, then gets pissed when we tell her of an event taking place within a few days and says no one keeps her informed. There's no reason why she can't call us! She has no contact with me, my brother, her grandkids or her great-grands! The last time I spoke with her was 2 months ago, when out of nowhere came, "You treat me like I'm already dead". She's never been a warm fuzzy mother, and when I tried spending time together with her she always had some medical reason why she couldn't. However, she managed to accept outings from my brother and day trips with my father before his passing.

I asked her to choose a broadway show for her Mother's Day gift years ago, she told me she didn't want to go, and had all kinds of excuses why. After many other attempts to spend time with her, I finally told her I was done.

Two months ago was the last time I spoke with my Mother by phone, which ended up with her hanging up on me. I am so done with all this! I have been the peace keeper in this family for years and now the peace keeper is the one she isn't speaking to. For years she (and my dad) didn't speak to my brother. During that time my brothers son died. I told my parents about the death and they seemed to show no interest in attending their grandson's funeral. I told the in no uncertain terms that if they don't go and make amends with my brother that they could forget about me being their daughter. They went.

There's a pattern here, my mother didn't talk to her sister for 39 years and she passed without making amends her. There were other Aunts & Uncles they didn't talk to also but I don't want to get into it.

Long story short, she's going to end up dying alone, bitter, & angery.
Well, now I vented alittle and re-read what I wrote and it doesn't make much sense, but thanks for letting me ramble on!


You led the horse to water. If she wants to be a horse's axx, that's her choice. Give her to God and go find happiness.
Bitter is the word, isn't it? I was thinking that before you summed it up at the end. Do you know what the roots of this might be?

My mother wouldn't speak to or see any of us if we didn't make the running - but at least she's not snippy with us when we do! Pathetically grateful for the attention is more like it. I agree that it's a free country and there's nothing stopping them issuing invitations, accepting invitations (!?! - what was that about???), or yes indeed just picking up the phone. But the fact is they won't. My mother at least bothers to make excuses - it's too late, it's too early, they'll be at work, they'll be relaxing after work, they'll be eating, she Doesn't Like To Bother Them - but the outcome's the same in that she has her precious grievance to nurture about how overlooked and unimportant she is. Bleah!

Anyway. It might set your mind more at ease if you can figure out the reasons, or at least the history, underneath your mother's terribly jaundiced outlook; but I'm depressed to think that it's probably much too late to help her. It's a great pity, but it's also not you who has to carry all these unhappy, angry, misanthropic feelings around with you. So that just leaves the frustration and hurt for you to deal with (just?!) - if you can try to understand why she's like this, I hope that might help.
My mother, a very wise woman, who didn't particularly get along with her mom, set a great example. Every Sunday, after church we went with her to the drugstore where we were each given a nickel to buy candy and she talked to her mother for a dimes worth of time. I've always felt an obligation to call my mom every other week or so when she was healthy and independent, more often as she became frailer. I guess I had it modeled for me that the child calls the mother to keep her in the loop. If she gets cranky, then oh lord, there's another call coming in!
You know, sometimes there are underlying cultural assumptions at play that we have no clue about. If she is rigid in her thinking patters, then the idea that there is a certain hierarchy of who calls whom, these can be hard assumptions to give up. Years ago, I had a colleague from a very small country. In her tradition, when a grandchild was born, the new mother walks up the road to present the new baby to the paternal grandma for approval/inspection. Well, she lived in NYC, and her DIL was in Ohio. But she still expected her DIL to get on a plane and bring the baby for her to see. Ingrained habits die very hard.
I wish!!!
Seriously, if you feel you want to keep in contact, after her hanging up on you a couple of months ago, you have options. It seems she has a long history of not keeping in contact with family. It is unlikely that is going to change much. If there is a family event I think it is only fair to give her decent notice in advance whether she calls or not. You were the one to advocate for contact when your bro's son died. It seems there is no one to advocate for you. I think with your history with her I would be pi**ed off and feel like letting her lie in her bed as she made it - but - she is your parent, and you may want to keep contact.

I would really lower any expectations of a cozy relationship with her, and of her sharing the give and take of communication. You could call once a week, once a month - whatever works for you, keep it short and pretty impersonal, rehearse what you want to talk about, - the weather, the grandchildren, the fall colouring, avoid touchy subjects, or distract from any she brings up and "gotta go" if the conversation gets heated. And/or you could send her a note on a pretty card every now and again saying the same sort of thing and call less often. Or some version of these.

It sounds to me that your mother has some long standing "condition" and this is not going to get better,
I like emjo's approach. The ball is in your court. If you want to have some contact with your mother, even something superficial, it is up to you to initiate the contact. If you don't mind severing all ties, that is your choice, too.

This woman is never going to be the fuzzy warm communicator that you wish she was. Take it or leave it. It's up to you.
Your Mum never calls anyone in the family, because just maybe, it never occurs to her to you. Why don't you call instead? Don't take her complaints seriously, even when she hangs up on you. Your Mum doesn't mean to neglect the extended family, she might just never think about it. Don't ask her to choose anything, even a show. Tell you are taking her out and it would be lovely if she could come with you. If she says she doesn't need to go out, tell her you want to go and would like her to go with you, she needs a day out! With your Mum, you need to have an answer for everything she says, and don't let the little things she says, get under your skin. Don't let your mothers lack of contact with her sister (her choice) be a catalyst for your relationship. Your Mum may not be a warm, fuzzy sort of person, but she is still your Mum, and learn to look past her comments. Don't let them get to you. All the best.
Allison, my mother does this as well. Both my brother and I are always amazed that no matter what happens in the family, don't expect a call from her. She also thinks everyone is supposed to visit her but she never needs to visit them. Needless to say she has no friends, all of her sister and brothers come by to visit when it is convenient to them, neighbors have given up on her as well.

Mom has had four siblings with cancer, two died. Whenever I asked about them she would always say," I don't know how they are, they haven't called me to let me know."

I have come to the conclusion this is all a means of control and attention. She expects all of us to pay her attention but she pays very little to her family, especially me. Everything is about her.

Right now she is pissed at me because I won't drive 10 hours or fly (airline ticket plus rental car) to visit her for 2 or 3 days. She can only have company for a couple of days. Then she has to get back out there shopping and she doesn't want to shop with anyone. She told me this herself.

So I think the not calling, not visiting, or whatever else we want to call attention to is all about selfishness, control and the need to be catered to and the need to see how much attention her royal highness gets from her subjects. :/
Thanks to all who shared their comments, stories and advice. It is much appreciated! Arlenehutcheon, I hear what you're saying, however I'm not into accepting mental abuse from her. I'm done being disrespected.

My mother is in full control of her faculties, she knows exactly what she's doing. Everyone can change but, ONLY if they want to. And she doesn't want to appreantly. The holidays will prove to be interesting this year but my guess is she will refuse to join in.

Yes, she is my mother and I won't be getting another, I know that. But I'm not subjecting myself to anymore mental abuse from her. I will make one more effort to contact her to see if things can be worked but I'm not holding my breath. I know she isn't going to be a warm fuzzy mother, she never was. I do have expectations, of being treated like an adult and treated with respect. The same things she expects from me! Yes, I am angry and I am hurt! If she was demented I could understand her actions but she isn't.

Palmtrees1, I feel your pain and know where you are coming from in your comment. I'm ight there with you! My mother holds onto grudges for years and years and will never take steps to fix them. She is never wrong, and she will never say, she's sorry. She never attended her mothers funneral because she had a fight with her sister about the arrangements. They didn't talk for 39 years after that. So that meant us kids had no contact with my aunt, uncle and cousins. That same sister died from brain cancer. After all those years (39) I had lost track of my Aunt and through the power of the internet I located her. When I spoke to her she asked me if she could call my mother. Of course to told her yes, although, I warned her she probably won't talk to her. I was right, my mother was still holding a grudge and hung up on her. Maybe I shouldn't have told my mother that my aunt was going to call. Either way the outcome would have been the same.

So, for my own peace of mind I will make one last effort to establish some kind of contact with my mother. Then the ball will be in her court!

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