I am worried about the future of my mom, is her ability to be manipulative only going to get worse from here?

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I don't even know if this is to ask for advice because I'm not sure there is much that can be changed. More an acknowlegment that I'm scared of what might happen.

My mom is in her late fifties, and she's still all there mentally. She's starting to have some health problems that worry me. She has an arthritic knee that makes it very difficult to go up and down steps, and, of course, she lives in a two-story house. She's stuck with the house because it needs some things fixed up and it's not really in sellable condition.

Until a couple of months ago, I lived with my mom and did a lot of stuff around the house. I got married and moved out. Obviously, I'm not there to do everything, but I still go there and do a lot of stuff around the house.

Recently, my mom fell at work and really hurt herself, although she didn't break anything. Refuses to go to the doctor. Refuses to honestly discuss with me how she really is.

My mother has always been a difficult woman. She won't tell me when she wants me to do something for her, and when I don't guess what she wants, she gives me the silent treatment. Then she'll suddently start talking to me again like nothing happened. She was really not happy with me getting married and treated me pretty poorly.

Now, I just get the feeling that she's manipulating me so that I'll do even more for her, although I know that she's really hurting. So then I feel guilty for thinking such a negative thing, but I can't seem to help myself because of the way she has treated me in the past.

I still do what needs to be done, but she just drives me crazy. When I ask her directly if she wants certain things, she'll say you have your own house to go to or I don't care...

I feel like it's only going to get worse from here on out. Am I a terrible person?

Answers 1 to 8 of 8
You are not a terrible person at all. You are stuck with a PROUD mother who may also be a narcissist. There is a reason why the Bible calls pride a sin. It's a very distructive thing for others......especially caregivers.
Yes it will probably get worse unless you confront her about it soon. Yes she will try to manipulate you and "play" you until you make it stop. She will tug at your heart strings until you wish her dead. She may even try to sabotage your marriage.
Sometimes people have children to raise as slaves to serve them when they are old. That may have been the case with you & why she is so upset that you have married. Do not allow this woman to dictate your life! You are entitled to a life just as much as anyone else is.
Lay down some boundaries & stick too them. Ground rules are important when dealing with this kind of personality. Otherwise she may put you in an early grave. You are right to be concerned for your own safety. I wish someone had warned me years ago when I could have prepared myself better.
Do what you safely can but have some balance or it may kill you. Narcissists will suck the life out of you if you let them.....DON'T LET THEM.
Top Answer
My dad catered to his mother like you are doing to yours. It caused a lot of problems in our home life. My mom resented his constant running to her and they almost got a divorce. It was devastating to my childhood being around the fighting, crying and I was so upset about it all I remember one time beating my head on the wall to get them to stop. Your wife will get sick of this. I agree she sounds like a narcissist, and they really don't feel empathy for anyone else. I wish we would have moved way away from my grandma....like my uncle did.
if your mom is only in her mid50s and doing this crap to you- you've got a long, long row to how.... she's still relatively young and could put you through this BS for a couple more decades. She won't change so YOU need to change to keep your sanity and live a happy life. There is no shame in wanting to live your own life and helping her when you can. I suggest YOU get some counseling to understand her hold on you. Be able to see the guilt trip coming so that you can deal with it more easily, be realistic about what's WORTH feeling guilt over and learn to detach somewhat for your OWN sanity and health. Try visiting WITH your spouse, she might behave better with someone else around. Screen your calls and don't ALWAYS rush to answer the phone; if it's an emergency you can always call her back.

Let us know if you have specific questions, the members of this site can provide lots of ideas and share their experiences. Best of luck.
NO you are not a terrible person. You are stressed, anxious and rightfully so. What is it that you think should be done with your mother....Is there any support from others?
golfbhard, I'm so glad that you have shared your story although I'm sorry you had to live through such a childhood. Husbands feel the same way that your mother did about your dad when our wives do the same thing. However, society does not seem to really believe this is true.
golfbhard, I'm so glad that you have shared your story although I'm sorry you had to live through such a childhood. Husbands feel the same way that your mother did about your dad when our wives do the same thing. However, society does not seem to really believe this is true.
Ambera77, no matter how much your mothers house is in disrepair, she can always sell it as a 'fixer upper' and in this economy, it might be just what someone is looking for. A good deal. If your mother is doing this NOW to you, what is it going to be like in 20 years? When you have kids that have to see their own parent being destroyed by their grandmother? What kind of example do you want to be for your kids? I think you need to ask yourself some questions, then make a plan.
If you have to move away to extricate yourself from a proud, willful, selfish mother, then do it. Better sooner than later in my opinion.
Amen and Ambera77, your mother sounds very much like she has an undiagnosed personality disorder. Frankly, I am not surprised she threw a fit and tried to fill you with so much Fear, Obligation and Guilt about not being focused on her. That such F.O.G. did not keep you from getting married. The fact that you got away from her is a testimony to how strong you are. However, to gain real freedom from her F.O.G.; to not walk on eggshells around her; to not be emotionally and intellectually at home while physically not there; and to not put your marriage at risk, I strongly recommend therapy from someone like a licensed clinical social worker. Both my wife and I have had to fight similar battles. I can tell you from experience that as you deal with getting your freedom, you and your husband will feel closer together. Go back and read your statement "I can't seem to help myself because of the way she has treated me in the past." Your gut feeling is telling you that you can't do this alone.

Making you feel like you are a terrible person is so typical of a borderline or narcicisstic personality disorder. If borderline, you mom sounds like a combination of the borderline queen "mommy dearest" and witch as described in Understanding The Borderline Mother.

You are not a terrible person. You did not cause her to be how she is. You can't control her. You can't fix her. The only person you can do anything about is yourself by choosing a healthy path to walk on with the determination that if she choses a healthy path fine, but if she does not fine.

Are you an only child?

Where is your dad?

Do you have durable POA for your mom?

Do you have medical POA for your mom?

How is your husband dealing with this?

Are his parents aware of this situation and supportive of you?

I'm very glad that you got out of your mom's house and got married. Now, you going to have to fight to keep your freedom and gain more. Keep coming back and letting us know how you are doing.

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