My mother ...

... is a bitch.  There, I've said it, and I feel so much better.  For those few people who may read this, a little background info.  My mother (the bitch) was diagnosed with schizophrenia when I was thirteen.  After a major meltdown where she threatened to shoot my father and myself, and then the big runaway in the car because 'someone' was after us, she was placed in a psychiatric facility (the looney bin) for a number of months where she received treatment, including electric shock therapy.  A weirdo went in, a stranger came out.  Now I've learnt to accept mother's bizarre behaviour over the years, but I have gradually come to the immutable conclusion that, despite her illness, my mother was, is, and always will be a bitch.  In this morning's telephone conversation mother blithely informed me that my eldest niece had sent her a "Grandma's Brag Book" for Christmas.  I said "that's nice, Mum" - she then went on to say that she had sent niece money for Christmas with a note that said if she didn't get a thank you then there would be no more money in the future - now doesn't that give you such a warm fuzzy Christmassy tingle.  So the brag book was just a guilt ridden thank you to ensure that the money keeps coming, I'm not sure who to feel more sorry for - the niece because she was blackmailed into the thank you, or Mum because she's such a bitch and actually seems to revel in her bitchy behaviour - she actually sounded pleased with herself at the way she treated my niece.  Of course she then went on to say how wonderful my youngest niece is, and how she loved the necklace Mum gave her for Christmas (oh and yes apparently mother can buy gifts for some family members rather than sending money when she actually likes the family member), and isn't she just such a lovely girl tra la la, ad infinitum, ad nauseum.  In the same conversation I informed mother that mum-in-law was going to stay at the local motel, rather than at her place because there wasn't enough room - mum's reply "we'll see about that, I'll ring Bess now".  That's one conversation I would have loved to listen in to - brick wall meet immoveable object. ETA - mother tried to cancel motel booking, even though m-i-l wants to stay there - I'd like to stay there - sometimes I wish mother dear had gone through with her threat earlier this year to write me out of her will.  I am so looking forward to Christmas, I think I may spend the three days we are there in an alcoholic haze (and cooking the roast turkey and pork that mother has decided we must have, but will do nothing to prepare) - works for me. 


  • Current Mood: infuriated infuriated
Jen, hugs much appreciated. I thought about deleting this post a number of times today, but came to the conclusion that this is exactly what LJ is for - to vent those feelings that otherwise get bottled up. I'm not trying to appear needy or pathetic - my mother is who she is, and I realised a long time ago that you don't necessarily have to like your relatives, even if you love them. My mother's greatest problem is that she makes her love conditional - conditional on thank yous, or visits, or phonecalls, or whatever, and that is so not what family should be. Family to me is unconditional support and love and respect, and accepting people for their faults and blunders and mistakes, and still loving them regardless. I guess when it comes down to it, suffering through this makes me realise how lucky I am to have a wonderful, supportive husband, and a 'mostly' great kid, and incredibly supportive real life and LJ friends who complete my family in more ways then my 'real' family does, so here's a shout out to you for your unconditional support and friendship - THANK YOU.
But DO know you have people out here who support and care for you. And who UNDERSTAND.

It's what keeps me going (besides Buffy/ Angel/Firefly/Farscape/Lord of the Rings dvds ;).
Big hug from me too. I'm glad you posted. One of the reasons I don't totally vent about my mom in lj is that she occasionally checks my posts. Also, I'm in 'feeling sorry for her' mode, being as I am half the world away and all. At the same time, I am dreading her visit in a couple of weeks. She just has the gift of ruining everything. So much anger inside her. I suppose I'll made a locked post at some point during her visit.

Sometime we'll have a total vent together. I had a similar experience with my mom when I was young: affairs with icky men, nervous breakdowns, saying terrible things about my father and my brothers, and just generally what you said: conditional love, all day, every day. But isn't it great that we grew up into relatively healthy people and good moms and broke that lousy cycle? Yay for us!!!
Thank you for your supportive words. Feeling much better today, but I really needed to vent the steam yesterday. Thank the powers-that-be for LJ, it is such a great relief valve.

we grew up into relatively healthy people

BM commented to me yesterday how lucky we are to have turned out relatively sane, considering our parents. I guess we make such a conscious effort not to be like them, because we've opened our eyes to their foibles, and don't want to make the same mistakes with our own children. I'm sure that I've over compensated with J, and spoilt him rotten, but at least he knows that if he ever fucks up badly, we'll be there regardless (and with no little sarky comments like someone I know).

Sometime we'll have a total vent together

Shared misery - yep, nothing like it, but gotta say from the get go, "my mother is a bigger bitch than yours, nyah, nyah, nyah!" ;-).
Yeah, sounds like your mom rulez badcrazyland. Have you ever read Gloria Steinem's autobiography? She has some pretty amazing compassion for her mom (who was more crazy than bitchy, but was pretty scary anyhow). Good book. I must admit, I have largely stepped off the compassion bus, and am happier for it.

It constantly amazes me how emotionally open PG is with the kids, given how emotionally constipated his family is. As for me, I occasionally catch myself being perfectionist and judgemental. Sigh. Although to my credit, I don't think I've ever had a complete let it out tirade at their imagined flaws and what a failure they are at 7 and 12 respectively. So there is a generational improvement happening there.
I have largely stepped off the compassion bus

::Vigorously nodding my head::

occasionally catch myself being perfectionist and judgemental.

We were obviously taught by masters, so sometimes it's hard to throw off the shackles of bitchdom, but try we must ;)

Here is my own handmade Christmas icon - sort of sums it all up really.