She won't let me leave!

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I am 40 and I moved "home" to care for my 80 year old mother a year ago, after I had lost my job and was homeless. Worst mistake ever. She has been abusive to me my entire life and has relied on me to take care of her since I was 3 years old. I am not kidding. My whole life has existed to serve HER- I wasn't allowed friends, she kept family away and wasn't allowed to date until my 20s and even then, she ruined my relationships by her constant interference.

She never worked and managed to blow through close to 300k in inheritances over the years, and that, as with everything else, has been MY fault. She has blamed me for everything (and I do mean everything) my entire life.

She won't see a doctor, won't accept outside help, I have no family, no friends and her constant demands cost me my marriage (she actually gloated with joy how she ended my marriage!).

She stays up all night talking to "jesus", praying to him to make me lose my job so that I know what it's like to suffer and also asking him to hurt me because I deserve it!!!

Now that I am financially getting back on my feet, she won't let me move out! She told me she will call the police and will not let me take any of my belongings, including my cat!!! She says that I will not abandon her because if I do, she will have no one and how will she get to the grocery store?

She rents an apartment and has no savings. She was denied medicaid because her life insurance was too big (5,000 is too much? really?).

If it wasn't for my cat, I would have ended it by now. She needs to know where I am at all times and I can't go anywhere alone except to work. She is always accusing me of meeting men in motels. I tried to go for a walk and she accused me of meeting men in the park. Disgusting.

I can't wait for her to die. I can't take anymore of this. I am a prisoner due to her threats and don't have ANY support! HELP!

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Gypsirose, you might need to get your son out of there too. If, without a chaperone/witness, she asks him do to any kind of intimate care, whether he does it or not, he could be accused of something that could ruin his life.

Good posts on Sermo lately (web board for physicians):
"So, if you're truly dealing with Narcissistic Personality Disorder, think of everything and everybody in that individual's life as representing a mirror which is experienced and responded to principally through the quality of the "reflection" that is returned to that individual. If things and people enable that individual to experience themselves positively, there is relative calm. If not, there is a need to disqualify or destroy the mirror. Added to that is the often inflated sense of self that is often necessary to offset the deep internal sense of inadequacy that is generally at the heart of such a disorder. This now means that others must not simply affirm that the individual is good, but generally that they are very special if not extraordinary."

"So, how do you protect yourself (assuming that this is a person who you feel must be in your life, for whatever reason)? First off, you recognize that this is a very stubborn and resistant disorder that has nothing whatsoever to do with you. This is a damaged individual whose psyche has erected an iron-clad set of defenses against a profound vulnerability. The very foundation of this defense lies in externalizing blame. So you need to have a thick skin and not take stuff personally. Protecting yourself also means not setting yourself up. As others have suggested, this is not someone who you can 'save'; to attempt to do so would likely be experienced as an injury and you would be excoriated for the attempt. This is also likely someone with whom you cannot reason or argue with the expectation that the outcome will be logical or fair. Most of all, you cannot go looking for empathy when you feel that this individual has harmed or wronged you. If you put your heart on the line, you do so absolutely at your own peril. Those with NPD are profoundly impaired in their capacity to experience empathy."

and

"It really has to do with proportion, the capacity to accept responsibility for one's own failings and the capacity for empathy. We're all capable of being wounded and most of us have particular areas of vulnerability that can be triggered and perhaps elicit an exaggerated response. But we are capable of acknowledging our own mistakes, capable of bearing the guilt that comes with that and capable of feeling empathy for others we may have hurt or wronged. The person with true NPD has an injury that is pervasive and never leaves them. The particular issues which may arise as injuries and trigger their rage are generally the tip of a very deep iceberg. Nothing but nothing is as important as protecting their incredibly fragile sense of personal worthiness."

Uniformly their advice is if to get away, and if you can't get away just keep things superficial and positive.

Carolyn Hax today has some stories too that will help put things in perpsective, especially for our OP here; there is one on a mom who succeeded in ensnaring one daughter, preying on her vulnerability and anxiety, and she ended up never leaving home and is now age 61 with mom now an invalid at 86. If you don't read her in the paper, try stltoday/lifestyles/relationships-and-special-occasions/columns/carolyn-hax/making-excuses-for-an-abusive-relationship/article_14249af2-2cd9-5beb-899c-b9ffdebf967b.html
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Sorry to say,Sound like you don't have any self esteem... 233619, I was in your shoes once,difference was you are dealing with your Mom, I did dealing with very abusive husband for 20 years for very mentally, physically, vocally. According to his eyes of me was " you are stupid Jap" If you are hearing like this day after day I really thought maybe I am?...... Nope, it is so wrong to be having this type of relationship with ANYONE,even your Mother. Almost every posters here said "get out this dark tunnel and see the light" you would be fine and get your new life going that I did when I was 42, now I'm 63 very happy for whatever I do and enjoyed my life as much as I could!!
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Not so very long ago children of 5 to 7 years old went out to work. I have even read of four-year-olds sewing gloves, for which they were considered particularly suited due to their tiny fingers and excellent eyesight. Nowadays many western kids are not allowed out by themselves until adolescence and some are still being pushed around in push chairs at the age of five or six. But this attitude towards kids is very recent. I know I went shopping by myself when I was seven, just to pick up milk at the corner store, but still no one thought anything of it.

Young kids are still used for hand sewing work in third world countries. Sequins, beads, embroidery - this fiddly work is mostly done by little kids.
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Wow. Just wow. I was not going to reply to any of this garbage, but this will be my last post. ATM's were in use back in 1980. At least they were in Connecticut. I was born, raised and am living in the United States. As for not being able to cook at age 3, I didnot make 7 course meals. If you are forced to make your "sick" (drunk) mother food and the instructions are being yelled at you from her bedroom, you learn very quickly, especially if you are starving and especially if you don't want the hell beat out of you. Let me change it to "made food" at age 3 because I could also make a sandwich and pour cereal. I guess you have no clue what abused kids go through. You have no right to tell me my childhood didn't happen.
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P.S. Brimstone, please take a few seconds and look at the very first answer given to Escape14.... just like others on this thread I had told her she needs to move out.
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Brimstone, why should I apologized for something that I have done research on and know for a fact is not wrong.
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Jeanne and Ba8alou, thanks for the insight into this issue. I understand the points you make and can see why a perception has developed that someone had responsibility well beyond the physical capacity for a child.

Brimstone, your post warrants no civil response.
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FREQFLYER & GARDEN ARTIST: Your replies provided absolutely no value; nothing you wrote to the poster was helpful or supportive- they were taunts. Someone reaches out for help and you both turned it into a childish game of "Liar, Liar!". The poster WAS an "outstanding" child- SHE SURVIVED! Ask yourself if you would have been able to.

Your tones (although condescendingly amusing) indicate common abusive tactics that challenge someone to "Justify, Argue, Defend & Explain" themselves. The poster is under no obligation to prove to YOU that her claims are real. Just because you don't believe something is possible (because you have no direct experience with it), does NOT mean that it is not true or possible. It's wonderful that you both knew healthy parental care and can feel free to deny the reality of anything that doesn't fit into your sheltered, narrow viewpoints. It must have been nice to grow up in Mayberry.

You have already had your baiting comments corrected by other forum members, yet you have not apologized when proven wrong. The term "mean girls" comes to mind. You were probably bullies as children. There is a term for what Escape14 is going through: Re-Victimization. Look it up.

ESCAPE14: Please heed the advice of the other posters here who truly have your best interests at heart. You need to get out as soon as you can. It is not healthy to live under those circumstances regardless of who you are living with.
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I agree , you need to get away from your mother,before it is to late. My mother depended on me since I was 12, I am 51 now. She has literally ruined all of my relationships. Her son and his family they don't help,he was off work on vacation for a week only came by once, she didn't say a thing to him,I came up to her house at 7:30am and she told me it is about time. I am always treated like this if not worse. I caregive 10 or more hours a day 7 days a week with no help. I became very sick for two weeks(stress) when I was back up there 2 days later a person from elderly abuse told me a report of me abusing her was filed, I have had enough. It is hard,but I have to think of myself and my son,who stays with her when I'm not there. He is 16. If your mother is saying she will turn you in turn the table beat her to it. Do to all the stress I have had 2 strokes, so please do something and soon. Ones health is not an excuse to be abusive.
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You need to leave. Your post was so sad but I am glad you have a cat. You can do this! The post above about what to do is great. Pretend that you are a warrior and you need to save your life. Everyday do something that will get you back your independence, do not ever stop working. When you wake up in the morning put on your imaginary warrior suit and get to finding a place besides your horrible mothers home.
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