Author Topic: "Give People A Chance to Change.."  (Read 1557 times)

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Offline OptingOut

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"Give People A Chance to Change.."
« on: July 06, 2014, 01:46:47 PM »
Hello all. I have posted in the past about my difficult relationship with my mother. She wants to be closer but I feel safer keeping her at a distance.

My eldest brother and my mom are very close. He is the one who my mother complains about the rest of her children to.

Apparently, my mother is offended and hurt that I won't have her in my home. I don't want her negative energy or rude comments.

My brother and my dad have both said that my mother will not behave that way. My brother also says that I need to give people a chance to change. I have experienced so much abuse and vitriol from my mother that I don't feel emotionally safe with her. My brother recently visited and he raved about the dinner I cooked as well as our place. Of course, my mother grilled him about the visit and he reported that I cooked a great meal and my place is lovely. Strangely, my mother was bragging to relatives that I live in a nice place; I don't know how she can do that when she hasn't even seen where I live.

So I am going to have my parents over for dinner sometime this month. I do not want to do this. However, I would rather not upset my parents unless it is absolutely necessary. I could be pleasantly surprised by my mother actually being polite to my husband and I, but based on her past behavior I am anticipating insults. I plan on leaving and going for a walk if my mother starts taking shots at us.

Any suggestions for getting through this dinner?  ::)

Offline luise.volta

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Re: "Give People A Chance to Change.."
« Reply #1 on: July 06, 2014, 02:33:40 PM »
O - the only thing that helps me is knowing it isn't about me. I never knew that and always thought it was my fault.
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

Offline OptingOut

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Re: "Give People A Chance to Change.."
« Reply #2 on: July 06, 2014, 04:04:36 PM »
That is great advice. It is hard not to be upset by my mother's behavior but it says more about her than me.


Offline herbalescapes

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Re: "Give People A Chance to Change.."
« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2014, 08:27:00 AM »
It's good that you don't have the rose-colored glasses on expecting a Norman Rockwell-worthy dinner.  However, being prepared for insults may have you over sensitive to comments.  How you draw the line between being realistic but not over-sensitive, I don't know.  Deep breathing?  Meditation?  Maybe have some pat, non-committal, non-inflammatory responses?  "How interesting." "That's something to think about."  "That's a view I hadn't considered."  "Bless your heart." You could try something like that if it's in a gray area and you're not sure it's insulting, then if the line gets crossed, go for that walk.  Good Luck. 

Online Stilllearning

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Re: "Give People A Chance to Change.."
« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2014, 04:33:52 PM »
Opting out, the chances are that if you told your MIL what you thought you heard her say she would be shocked.  There is a lot of room for interpretation in regular conversation and often the people who are used to your language patterns understand what you are saying while others may think you are horrible.  Often our adult children interpret our comments as young children would and suggestions are, in their minds, turned into criticisms and advice is turned into orders. 

When you host your parents this month try reminding yourself that they are not paying your bills. They are no longer 'in charge' of you...you are in charge of yourself and their comments have no more weight than you give them.  You love them and want them to be a part of your life, but your life is no longer dependent on their good graces.  It will take the 'sting' out of their words and allow the 'love' in yours.

Good luck!!
Your mind is a garden your thoughts are the seeds
You can grow flowers or you can grow weeds.
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Offline OptingOut

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Re: "Give People A Chance to Change.."
« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2014, 05:09:31 PM »
Opting out, the chances are that if you told your MIL what you thought you heard her say she would be shocked.  There is a lot of room for interpretation in regular conversation and often the people who are used to your language patterns understand what you are saying while others may think you are horrible.  Often our adult children interpret our comments as young children would and suggestions are, in their minds, turned into criticisms and advice is turned into orders. 

When you host your parents this month try reminding yourself that they are not paying your bills. They are no longer 'in charge' of you...you are in charge of yourself and their comments have no more weight than you give them.  You love them and want them to be a part of your life, but your life is no longer dependent on their good graces.  It will take the 'sting' out of their words and allow the 'love' in yours.

Good luck!!

I'm not sure why you mentioned my MIL as this thread was not about her. ???

As for interpreting La Mere's words as a young child, you may want to ask questions before making assumptions. Here is a thread that details the reasons for the kind of relationship I have with La Mere. As you will read, this goes far beyond a simple "interpretation issue":

http://www.wisewomenunite.com/index.php/topic,7039.msg74260.html#msg74260

I know it is hard to believe but sometimes parents can actually be out of line. Shocking I know. ;D Most adults do not appreciate unsolicited advice and opinions from others because it is meddling. A good parent knows when to stay out of her adult children's business. Mothers who are controlling meddlers complain the loudest that they aren't being respected, however it is often because the meddling mothers are rude and intrusive. I have a nasty MIL and an even worse mother so I know what I am talking about.

I have decided not to have my parents in my home after all. My home is my sanctuary and I don't need to have anyone in my home if he or she brings nothing but pain to my life. La Mere can be upset all she wants. When I escaped her abusive home, I promised myself that she was never going to force me to do anything again. I don't need La Mere's negativity and I don't want her gossiping about my place to extended family. I also do not want to be embarrassed in front of my husband. I feel so ashamed when La Mere goes on one of  her tirades and my husband asks questions about her behavior. He can't stand my La Mere but he tolerates her because he loves me.

When I lived alone, I could only afford small and dingy places. La Mere loved to come over and loudly exclaim that I lived in a dump. I don't want her to do that again when I live with my husband. It would be embarrassing. My father swears that La Mere won't say such things, but I know what kind of person she is.

I have set firm boundaries so that I can enjoy my adult years, the way I couldn't enjoy my childhood because of my mother. I love my father very much because he is a loving parent. I only talk to my mother because if I don't, I will lose the rest of my family of origin. Everyone else in my immediate family is afraid of my mother except me. I wish that I could have only my father in my home but of course that wouldn't be acceptable.

Thank you for your response. I'm glad that I was able to explain myself further and correct your misconceptions.

Offline OptingOut

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Re: "Give People A Chance to Change.."
« Reply #6 on: July 07, 2014, 05:12:34 PM »
Opting out, the chances are that if you told your MIL what you thought you heard her say she would be shocked.  There is a lot of room for interpretation in regular conversation and often the people who are used to your language patterns understand what you are saying while others may think you are horrible.  Often our adult children interpret our comments as young children would and suggestions are, in their minds, turned into criticisms and advice is turned into orders. 

When you host your parents this month try reminding yourself that they are not paying your bills. They are no longer 'in charge' of you...you are in charge of yourself and their comments have no more weight than you give them.  You love them and want them to be a part of your life, but your life is no longer dependent on their good graces.  It will take the 'sting' out of their words and allow the 'love' in yours.

Good luck!!

I also want to add that this isn't the first time you have posted in my thread, for the purposes of blaming me for the problems I have with my MIL and my mother. I am not sure why you are so fixated on me, but I will be blocking you from now on. I do not come to this forum to have someone confront me about things that are not my fault. Mothers are not right all the time, my dear.

Online Stilllearning

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Re: "Give People A Chance to Change.."
« Reply #7 on: July 07, 2014, 05:55:20 PM »
Oh my goodness!  I am so sorry for adding to your troubles.  So sorry!  I certainly hope all goes well for you! Mea culpa....
Your mind is a garden your thoughts are the seeds
You can grow flowers or you can grow weeds.
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Offline Monroe

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Re: "Give People A Chance to Change.."
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2014, 07:24:25 AM »
Opting out, the chances are that if you told your MIL what you thought you heard her say she would be shocked.  There is a lot of room for interpretation in regular conversation and often the people who are used to your language patterns understand what you are saying while others may think you are horrible.  Often our adult children interpret our comments as young children would and suggestions are, in their minds, turned into criticisms and advice is turned into orders. 

When you host your parents this month try reminding yourself that they are not paying your bills. They are no longer 'in charge' of you...you are in charge of yourself and their comments have no more weight than you give them.  You love them and want them to be a part of your life, but your life is no longer dependent on their good graces.  It will take the 'sting' out of their words and allow the 'love' in yours.

Good luck!!

I also want to add that this isn't the first time you have posted in my thread, for the purposes of blaming me for the problems I have with my MIL and my mother. I am not sure why you are so fixated on me, but I will be blocking you from now on. I do not come to this forum to have someone confront me about things that are not my fault. Mothers are not right all the time, my dear.

I don't think Stilllearning was blaming you for anything.  I interpret her comments as support for you and suggesting a coping technique - to remind yourself that your parents are no longer 'in charge' of you. 

Offline Pooh

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Re: "Give People A Chance to Change.."
« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2014, 08:52:04 AM »
OptingOut, consider this your last warning.  The forum rules state you will be respectful to other members or you will not be a member here.

This website does not seem to be a fit for you as you want to give advice and suggestions, but you do not want anyone else to give you advice and suggestions.  You want to turn everything into a debate with members who do not agree with you.  There are other website forums that are geared for that type of behavior, but this is not one of them.



We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. -
Joseph Campbell

Offline Pooh

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Re: "Give People A Chance to Change.."
« Reply #10 on: July 08, 2014, 08:59:39 AM »
Nevermind.  After finding the same type of disrespect on another post, this member is no longer welcome here and I'm closing the thread.
We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. -
Joseph Campbell