She favors my brother but he can barely stand her. She is mentally sound and physically amazing. She makes up lies about alot of our family members. I would like to have had a close relationship with her but too much water under the bridge now. I want to know if any of you have cut ties with a parent and how did it go? People who know my Mom will not blame me.

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If you're sure this isn't dementia, then there's obviously a long-standing family issue or some other mental health problem. Whatever it is, you can't let her undermine your health.

It's unfortunate, but many families are fractured because of situations like this. You may want to try counseling for yourself, so you know what direction you want to move in. You aren't alone, that's for sure. But please get some professional advice before totally cutting ties. Then, if you must cut ties, you'll know you've done your best.
Good luck,
Helpful Answer (2)

You don't have to cut ties to make more healthy space for yourself. Think of it this way: what sustains us is how we feel about our own behavior. Being cold doesn't tend to feel good, but neither does letting ourselves be used as a doormat. Here's what I've done with a toxic relationship, in case it's helpful to you: I'm always civil. I am always generous. I am civil and generous because I want to be that way, not because I expect it to make her treat me better. This is key, a hugely important shift in how you decide what to do -- you do it for you. I keep enough tabs on her situation to know if something really bad happens that she'd need my help for. I visit only once every few months and for no more than a few hours at a time. I call once in a while, and allow the conversation to go on as long as it remains pleasant. There are a couple of topics that I will not permit, and she knows that I will refuse to discuss them -- even to the point of giving her several, calm, warnings that I will hang up if she goes on, and hanging up in the end if I have to. None of this has to do with aging. It has to do with managing a difficult relationship.... As she ages my commitment is that I will see to it that she's got a roof over her head, food on the table, and her medical needs met. Anything else is a function of the quality of the relationship, and she's 50% responsible for that. My behaving decently no matter what, and keeping the interactions limited to limit how hurtful she can be to me, I'm taking care of what I'm responsible for, my 50%. I'm also contributing to the possibility that she can, if she chooses, take care of her side. The biggest favors you can do someone, and the biggest contributions you can make to a relationship, are (a) not let them hurt you and (b) not let them make you behave badly.... This is a life's work. Let it help you grow. All the best.
Helpful Answer (18)

I had to cut ties completely - it remains a very hard emotional situation for me . I retain POA for now and cover her expenses and make sure she is taken care of - medical care groceries etc . but she was angry with me ( for the 1000 time) and was trying to make it seem that we were guilty of elderly neglect. If you call 20 years of being at her every beck and call and now living in a luxury gaited community abuse then guess I'm guilty.
I do not see her physically but I still make sure she goes without nothing. This site has helped - I have come to terms that she has and always had a personality disorder- however much it hurts me to know my mother used me -( fear obligation and guilt-) you have to accept however unfair - it is what it is and do the best you can.
Sad to say some familty members and church members have nothing to do with me because of my decision. But then it isn't them- they never lived with her - saw what she was behind closed doors- physically and mentally abusive.
Helpful Answer (7)

Sounds very familiar. Bottom line, you can't change ANYONE and have to look after your own choices; with a personality disorder -- narcissism w/paranoia is a believable description -- it's the same only more so, if that makes sense. It's good you have your husband to back you up. Choose to behave well but not like a martyr.... Each individual decision goes that way, and they add up, and you get stronger. Yes it's very hard, but it frees you in an important way because you are learning something very basic about your own decisions.
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My mom has a personality disorder. I am going on vacation next week and she has been acting out for the last week. It's typical of her behavior. She's angry because I'm going to enjoy myself. She's done it all my life. It'll never change.

Someone said the personality disorder can mellow with age. I think just the opposite, it gets worse with age. Although old age creates a certain amount of fatigue so there isn't as much energy behind the outbursts.

It's a horrible situation. What a waste of life and good living.
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Dear holmoak,

It has been 5 years since I posted this comment and here is what happened to me. I finally decided to put up borders with mom. It was easy since I live in a different state and it would require a plane trip to visit her. So I decided to call her once a week, let her talk about herself, make negative comments and basically ignore what she was saying. I did not visit for 5 years.

She would make comments about me not visiting but I ignored them too. She told me once that I was welcomed in her home for 2 or 3 days and that was it. I decided to stay home but I did invite her every year to spend the winter with me in Florida. She refused. I was supposed to visit her when she felt like it.

Thirty years earlier she and dad made a will dividing their estate between me and my brother. I always had the feeling she would leave me out if she could. So she did the sneaky thing. She went to the bank and made my brother beneficiary of every single thing she owned, about 700,000.00 worth. All was left for me was half of an old house valued at 100,000.00.

In late March she became very ill. She had less than three months to live. We called hospice and I travel to stay with her for the first month. During this time my brother discovered what she had done with her bank accounts and told her that no matter what she wanted or did, he was giving me half. So he told her to make it easy for him and add me to the accounts. She did but never addressed this with me, never soothed my hurt feelings.

I spent a month with her and she never changed. Not even a little bit. She blamed me for stopping up her plumbing because I brushed my hair in the bathroom, she blamed me for not putting enough gas in the car when I went to the store to buy and pay for all the food, she blamed me for cracking my window at night to get a breath of fresh air, she gave away jewlery I wanted for my girls, her granddaughters, to her grandson to give to his girl friend. She would not let me watch any TV except what she wanted (the Walton's). And most of all she never addressed my hurt feelings and the fact she gave my brother all of her money basically disinheriting me. She never changed.

When I left, I knew I would never see her again. She died six weeks later. I heard just after I left she changed her attitude and was like a different person. Well good for her.

I guess if there was a silver lining in this sad relationship it was my brother. He was a far better man than I thought and I respect him more than ever. He told me he had do the right thing and answer to God. Mom has to answer too.

So please understand your mother has her own demons for whatever reason but it does not give her the right to abuse you, a loving and caring daughter. Distance yourself and take care of yourself and realize people like our mother's are damaged or sick or mean or whatever. But it is not our fault ever.

And most of all they die sooner or later. The movie ending of bedside confessions and airing it all out doesn't happen with these types. They never do anything wrong. Get some help, read some self help books and put up that wall. It is really all you can do other than just totally disconnecting with her. Take care.
Helpful Answer (5)

Granted, you can't change any one. You can change yourself pick your battles. I have a family abuse history and years of therapy. There are tools for dealing with difficult people, books on it as well look up at library or self help sections in books stores. You need to distance yourself either emotionally or literally, or both. I have done both with various people at various times. the thing is to remember YOU deserve to be treated with respect and if you are not engaging in the abuse yourself or sending it back at em you have no reason to put up with the BS they dump on you. Remind yourself you are a good person, stay connected if you must for business and safety sake BUT REMIND YOURSELF THIS PERSON HAS A PROBLEM AND IT is not you. IT IS them.

Sorry hit cap lock, but it is important. When loved ones are as toxic to you as strangers who care nothing for you and do nothing but cause harm out of selfishness, disregard ignorance or it just being who they are it hurts and it effect every aspect of you life.

You need to put your needs first here or risk being either turned into one of them and taking it out on the world or being whittled down to a non-entity who doesn't believe you deserve any better and you DO.

Take care of yourself, make friends outside the family system, always remind yourself when talking to this person they are not going to improve , this is always the main spring of who they are with you and do not keep waiting for it to clear up or get better or go away.

Now when I have to deal with people in my family I remind myself they are still playing these games, have issues that are THERE PROBLEM NOT MINE! and I am not afraid of them anymore. I AM the authority on MY life, I choose what is of value to me and what They think of me, does not matter.

Too long a post? But a serious issue for anyone dealing with it,and many here are...Best Wishes....
Helpful Answer (4)

Being grateful to someone who gave you life is a crock. Biology does not entitle you to be forever an adoring mother! Love, respect, honesty and all those good characteristics toward your child is what makes you a mother. Without it you are no more than a birthing machine. Loving care is not an entitlement, it has to be earned. My advice to madge1 is if you can live with yourself to have a better life, do it and don't look back.
Helpful Answer (4)

I did and it was very hard but it would have been much more difficult to continue a relationship with my mom and my sister. They are very jealous and selfish people. The more successful my husband and I became(you would think they would be happy for us) the more rude and abusive they became. My mother badmouthed my husband (who is the sweetest man ever and treats me like a queen) and that was the last straw for me.

What is it about parents that are jealous of their kids and not happy for them.

It is very dysfunctional behavior and she is obviously not going to change. I would try to get along with her and not let it bother you or just stay away from her at all costs.
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Glad I found this site and read these replies. My story is pretty much the same, except in recent years my mum has developed severe memory problems, confusion, paranoia, delusions and hallucinations. Neighbours, family and friends ring me to tell me, expecting me to do something. I have bashed my head against a brick wall trying to talk to doctors, hospital, mental health teams, social workers etc etc. Mum is able, I've seen it so many times to somehow switch from a very confused state, asking me to help to an immediate switch when we go to see the doctor or anyone basically, she also tells everyone it is me trying to get her in a home, that I break in and steal or hide things, break her radiators and calls me a liar if I try to explain to anyone how things are. She has called the police on several occasions, telling them I've locked her in, they see a poor old confused lady and suspect me. Then the keys turn up in a well hidden place. Eventually she was diagnosed with mild dementia, a diagnosis I watched happening and don't believe for one minute. I have known her my whole life, I know the patterns, the selective memory, how everything is always everybody else's fault. It's all so difficult, I've tried all the tactics of handling the situation. I know I need to cut her out of my life but everytime I try to or when she has cut me out of her life, I end up feeling guilty and so sorry for her as she is getting worse, more isolated and I don't like to think of anyone in this situation with no one. I feel pathetic as it is like I open myself up every time for another hard knock, mostly she claims not to need help, that nothing is wrong, other times she rings begging for help. Yesterday, she spoke to me like a normal person, was sorry for everything, then showed me a letter. A safeguarding team had been round to see her because she told them I was trying to steal her money, luckily they were writing to say they had closed the case. How can I continue to be in her life? It is having such a detrimental affect on me and my life? Yet how do I cut her out without feeling so bad? She needs help but the authorities say 'it's her choice, she is capable of making a choice'.
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