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self-pitying family member..


Illusionist
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Hi:

I'm from an asian family and my mother is in her mid 50s right now. Recently my mother just got very unpleasant in front of my sister.

My mother has a strong tendancy of self-pity. For example if we say something small negative things we say or do about her, or even expressing a simple disagreement, she would repeat our "key" words to her self while yelling, and those "key" words will soon be changed to something similar but much more serious and get "rearranged" by her. In the end, she would get herself in believing them and then burst into tears while accusing us of mistreating her.

My mother is nice to me most of times when she has her sanity. However she is contantly mad at my sister for everything my sister does. This is wierd to me, because I'm totally indifferent toward my parents. Especially when they accuse me of not being nice to them, I'd harshly point out that they are the cause of most of my flaws and sufferings that came with them. My sister still tries to be the mom's good girl yet she gets very bad attitude from my mother. My sister is much more responsive to them and do most things she's asked to do. When my mother is living my sister, she tried to stop her playing WOW and do something "more honourable". She tries to stop her from any social event but when I'm there, My sister and I can go out with friends unchallenged... My mother even accused my sister of not loving the family as much as I do... somehting that's clearly not true. And the thing is, if we donot comply with her demands, she'd keep talking. If you talk back, she'd start her self pity thing again...

What should we do? She clearly doesnt realize these problems. And my sister is asking me for help!

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Guest ASchwartz

Hi Illusionist,

I suspect that many of us will find your description of your family dynamics involving your mother to be very familiar.

Frankly and in my opinion, there is not much you can do. Your mother is the way she is and is not going to change. I do not know how old you or your sister are but I am guessing that you are both adults.

Maybe there are two things you and your sister might try:

1. Instead of getting angry at Mom, try to tell your self in a humorous way, "Oh, there goes Mom again," and just smile.

2. Tell Mom what she wants to hear: "Of course we love you and care about the family and you. Aw Mom, stop worrying." Then, just leave it at that.

Can you tell us more about your Dad and who else is in the family and how the full system of dynamics works?

Do others have ideas, suggestions and similar experiences?

Allan

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