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Old 09-24-2014, 11:30 AM
 
1 posts, read 1,220 times
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I'm sure this is a thread that occurs often. I'm hoping my situation is unique enough to make a new thread, however. The ever occurring "guilt trip" parent.

So, to get to the point fast, my mother is an incredible guilt tripper, with ideals and notions in life that are completely different from my wife's and mine. To her, settling down and having children and finding any job is qualified as success. It seems the more children you pop out the more successful you really (lots of notions for us to start having kids, of course).

That is not our view point. My wife and I are both educated. I have a masters and my wife a bachelors. We moved across the country a year ago because I was offered an almost full ride scholarship to graduate school. Where a parent should be excited and encouraging, my parent(s) were not. In fact, the conversation consisted of her crying a lot (the guilt trip) and saying she is disappointed in me for moving away from the family. That I'd be better off staying at home and finding a job in a factory.

So, that was crazy. Other similar things have occurred, which may be her worrying more than guilt tripping, but they are both annoying. My wife and I went to Mexico for our honeymoon, for example. She was mad about it because she thought it was dangerous and that we should "just rent a hotel down the road because that's all we would be able to do." She was also (slightly less) upset a few weeks ago when we went on a missions trip to Guatemala, with a similar story that it was unsafe.

So this all sounds pretty crazy to me. Yesterday, just to add to the guilt tripping and drama, I informed her than in a year and a half, when my wife and i finish our educations, we have intentions to go and teach English internationally, most likely in South Korea. I informed her of the high pay, free rent, free plane tickets, cheap living conditions, etc. I also informed her that we would probably struggle to find any jobs in our field here in America for 5 or 10 years. Where I think enthusiasm and encouragement would entail, again she started guilt tripping. Pretty much ending he conversation because she was sobbing on the other end of the phone.

A mother can worry, I get it. And if her desire is to stay in the same place her whole life that's fine. But to put them ideas on me and expect or hope that I would follow them seems crazy.

How do you deal with such a situation, besides just blocking people out?!
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Old 09-24-2014, 11:35 AM
 
Location: Brentwood, Tennessee
43,281 posts, read 41,861,706 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robertlop View Post
A mother can worry, I get it. And if her desire is to stay in the same place her whole life that's fine. But to put them ideas on me and expect or hope that I would follow them seems crazy.
You tell her this exact thing ^^^. But instead of "crazy," say "unfair."

Then, from then on, when she starts doing this, say very clearly, "Mom, I understand you worry. But Wife and I are very excited about this plan and hope you will stop trying to discourage us."

If she continues, tell her that her behavior makes you NOT want to call her, and that you hope she will stop because you certainly want to keep in touch.

Then change the subject.
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Old 09-24-2014, 01:43 PM
 
Location: Back at home in western Washington!
1,490 posts, read 3,948,303 times
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Good advice from Wmsn. I would also add that I wouldn't tell your mom any information about your plans before you absolutely HAVE to. You have given her 18 months of time to work herself up. Don't give her that lead up time.
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Old 09-24-2014, 01:51 PM
 
Location: between three Great Lakes.
1,759 posts, read 1,947,042 times
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Your mom sounds like she's two centuries behind. I'm glad your wife doesn't knuckle under to her outmoded views.

One thought: don't be so generous in "sharing" your plans with your mother. As a grown, out-of-the-house-and-married adult, she doesn't get a vote in your life plans, so stop telling her things. She can read all about it on your Facebook page, like the rest of your peeps.

(Oh, I see gave essentially the same advice as Sabinerose. Well, take it; we're both right!)
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Old 09-24-2014, 01:51 PM
 
Location: Lebanon, OH
5,896 posts, read 6,327,291 times
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My mom is a bad guilt tripper, she can say Why should I have to ______? and Why don't you ______? in the same breath.

This while I was working 50 hours a week, raising a kid and taking care of a house, not leaving me a lot of time.
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Old 09-24-2014, 01:55 PM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
18,100 posts, read 22,968,690 times
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I agree that I'd not tell her anything until the last minute. Just for your own peace of mind.

Then when you inform her of your plans, be ready to leave or hang-up. Don't engage, just inform her, and when she starts to go off the deep end say, "Mom, I'm not going to put up with any drama. If you go on and start to cry, etc., I will leave or hang up. And it might drive me so nuts that I'll stop talking to you altogether. I'm going to do what I'm going to do. So you are the one who needs to figure out how to deal with that." And then if she continues, grab your keys and leave. Make sure this happens when/where you can leave in your own car, etc.

If you need to put that in writing for her, because she's sobbing loudly and not listening, then so be it.

Think of her as a child who throws a tantrum. Do you baby the tantrum, or tell them to go to their room and you're not going to watch it? Hopefully, you'd do the latter. Kids learn that tantrums don't do any good and quit doing it. So will your mom.

And if not, then cut her out. You have the right to a peaceful existence with your spouse.

BTW, enjoy your adventure! I'd want to get a few countries away from your Mom, too.

Just a last note, my family is nuts. As soon as I turned 18, I got out of the house and moved 2 states away. It was the right thing to do.
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Old 09-24-2014, 02:05 PM
 
3,752 posts, read 9,605,753 times
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People have given you lots of the same advice. When we got married 42 years ago, my husband took his parents aside and told them if they bugged us about having kids, we would stop talking to them. Simple direct and honest. Not as much of an issue as yours but he knew what was coming.

It worked.

Just like you would a child, give the rule, make sure it is understood, give consequences, and be prepared to enforce the consequences, often multiple times.
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Old 09-24-2014, 02:10 PM
 
16,720 posts, read 14,702,776 times
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I am glad that you don't bend to your mother's will, and continue to live your life as you see fit.

The only thing you can do is confront her and say something to the effect of, "If you can't be happy for me and my choices, I am going to stop telling you about them," and if that doesn't work, stop communicating.
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Old 09-24-2014, 02:15 PM
 
3,997 posts, read 3,221,666 times
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There is no guilt trip unless you allow it. You know how she is and how she feels. You know you need to do what is best for you and your wife.

You know how she reacts to what you tell her. So stop telling her what you are going to be doing, because you know exactly how she will react. Leave your future plans out of conversations. I know it will be difficult for you, but you already know there is nothing you can do other than moving home near her that will make her happy. So stop telling her your plans.
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Old 09-24-2014, 02:17 PM
 
7,385 posts, read 13,236,603 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robertlop View Post

A mother can worry, I get it. And if her desire is to stay in the same place her whole life that's fine. But to put them ideas on me and expect or hope that I would follow them seems crazy.

How do you deal with such a situation, besides just blocking people out?!
Is that really any different than what you're doing? You know how your mother is, but you seem to hope/expect that she'd display different behavior if you put ideas (educating her on the facts, for instance) on her. I agree with the others that you should limit on giving her information and the time for her to process it on you.
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