December 6, 2018 at 5:11 pm #64653
Driving to work this morning, alone with my thoughts, I was thinking about all the posts I read on this site and trying to understand them in relation to my own story.
For me, it’s about trying to control others. My ECs have all said at one time or another that I didn’t behave as they thought a mom or grandma should. In my words, in my behavior, and how I spend my money on them (or not!). They also find fault with the things I enjoy doing, like quilting. I am not a sports fan and I am condemned for that too, because they are, and they think I’m weird because I don’t have their same likes and dislikes. How strange!
I have tried hard to raise them to be individuals, free in their ability to express their own hopes and dreams. The structure I tried to provide was for moral issues. Be honest, be kind, work hard, etc. I see that didn’t quite take, sadly. But I did not impose my will upon them for their choices in careers, spouses, politics, the way they spend their money as adults, who they choose to associate with, and even their religious views (once they were past the teen stage).
Love is freedom, right? I tried to be the kind of mom who supported that freedom they are entitled to in order to choose their own destiny.
Why, do you suppose that they do not afford me the same kind of love? Their issues seem to be not about what I did do for them, but all the things they feel I should have done and didn’t because they are not part of my nature. This is especially true when they speak of my inadequacy as a grandma as well. They expected this or that and I didn’t do what they wanted.
I think it is further complicated by their friends, media etc. of course, but most especially the people they chose to marry. I notice their mothers are similar to me in many respects. They are people pleasers, non-confrontational for the most part. When their kids tell them what to do they do it. That’s where I draw the line. I do what I feel I can do, what is right for me in my place and time and financial ability.
I won’t be told how to be a person by my children. That applies double to the people they chose to marry!
So I really can’t fix this. I control only myself. I feel others have the right to their own thoughts and actions and so do I. If that makes me a terrible person, mother and grandmother to them, I guess I can’t change that.
Love is freedom to be the person who you are, not the person someone wants to make you into.
December 6, 2018 at 6:35 pm #64674
“So I really can’t fix this. I control only myself. I feel others have the right to their own thoughts and actions and so do I. If that makes me a terrible person, mother and grandmother to them, I guess I can’t change that.” (Freshstart).
Truly. Wise. Words.
Thank you Freshstart!
December 6, 2018 at 6:41 pm #64687
Freshstart, I thought of you and your post when I read a quote from Buddha this morning. It said, “In the end,only 3 things matter: how much you loved, how gently you lived, and how gracefully you let go of things not meant for you.” You sound like someone who loved your children WELL and that you had a gentle spirit in their upbringing. You walked away because they were too busy finding faults in you while you were too busy overlooking theirs. You have my admiration.
December 7, 2018 at 6:20 am #64697
Dear Freshstart – your words resonate with me. You really summed up your experience beautifully. And, it mirrors mine. I suspect it is a ditto for many others who have found this supportive site.
I agree that control can be an issue and I also have EC who for some reason feel that their 15 or so years of adulthood have more merit than my 40 plus.
I am also seeing in my EC degrees of critique, criticism – on some really petty issues. I think that is also for many connected to control.
I have concluded that I too can only control myself and my responses.
I have stopped reaching out and am not making any contact. It is up to them. And, should they reach out as Aussiemom says – they will no longer find a doormat mom.
December 8, 2018 at 2:41 am #64725
Control is the issue with many of these kids. They have learned and we have allowed that they can control us by using or taking away their love.
Over time when we get fed up with this control or we attempt to push back against it, we are cut off. The love is taken away. We are called names, made to feel as if we are somehow wrong or bad in the way we are, act, talk etc.
In my experience it was when I had had enough of the disrespectful behavior and pushed back, and when I did I pushed HARD. I lost my temper. I said enough and meant it. I was then cut off and told I wasn’t to ever talk or contact them again. I was uninvited to the wedding. They told lies about my husband and I. I was called “abusive” by my son, lie. I was called “toxic”. They told people that I was “narcissistic”. I was called “crazy”. My husband was “controlling”. Funny thing is they are the ones that were acting in such a way that all of these things applied, not us.
I took control over my life and my emotions and my anger and my love. I took control over my thoughts and when they went to my son, I made myself think of other things, good things, happy things. The only person who should control you is you. When I didn’t let him control them any longer I found peace. I found detachment and ultimately acceptance. Acceptance that my son is who he is, I can’t control him or his actions. I can’t change him into the person I wished he was and I can’t let him dictate my happiness or hurt.
Acceptance is the only reason I was able to face him that day and know for a fact I could walk away and never see him again and be ok with it. Turns out, when he realized this fact too and he realized he didn’t control me anymore he became desperate to get that control back. Now, 8 months later we are in a very different place with a VERY different relationship than before. He understands that I will walk away and I will not cater to his whims and I will push back immediately to disrespect or lies or manipulation.
Sheri told me in a post when I was first on here that the relationship would never be the same, that our family will never go back to what it was. I think I said something like “I just want my family back to the way it was”. YR also made a point of why would you want that, it was what led to this……. Wise women right there huh.
No, it will never be what it was, we will never have the relationship we did, thankfully. We will have a new type of relationship in which I dictate what I will and won’t tolerate. I love my son and I know he loves me but that love will no longer dictate my actions, my words or happiness.
December 8, 2018 at 8:20 am #64740
Freshstart and Andsoitgoes,
Bigotry, racism, injustice, hatred, prejudice, narrow-mindedness, chauvinism, homophobia, genocide, discrimination, and terrorism are based on the principles of your sons’ beliefs; “An inability to accept anyone or anything that is different than what exists at the end of their own noses. Although the shoes fits perfectly, I am sure they lack the courage to wear it.
Until your sons walk the same miles in your shoes, their judgement is rendered invalid. If that level of arrogance exists for their own mother, then they are begging life to teach them a lesson to humble them. Disaster, trauma, job loss, health, crime and natural disasters DO NOT schedule appointments. From the song that I once imagined was written about my son:
“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” ~ John Lennon
No one with the arrogance of an idiot, Judas, or fool is regarded as worthy to judge anyone; Only God almighty is worthy, so these boys need to take their issues of control up with Him.
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