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Old 01-15-2019, 09:10 PM
 
13,675 posts, read 13,502,093 times
Reputation: 39794

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My mother and I are estranged. She thinks if she waits long enough I will forget about why and pick up where we left off. That's not going to happen. She texted to wish me happy new year. I responded in kind and wished her a good time on her upcoming trip and then told her I had to go to bed, ending the conversation. I kept it polite, but shut it down. My desire is for us to be able to be civil on occasions we encounter each other, but that is more and more unlikely. I moved to Colorado and she is leaving my home state to move to Florida soon (YAY!). We will have no reason to enounter each other again.

But it seems like she HAD to push a boundary. She recently asked me in a text to send my grandfather's binoculars to her for her upcoming vacation. We have not had a conversation in two years. My grandfather has been dead for 30 years. She has made no mention of the binnoculars in that time. I know exactly where they are but I don't want to send them to her because I don't want them damaged or lost, and I have no faith that she will send them back when she's done. I'm not a sentimental person, but I like knowing I have a good set of old school binoculars and I like that they were my grandfather's (her father's) - I didn't get any keepsakes or pictures when he died.

So I'm thinking I'm just going to ignore her text and if she pesters just tell her I don't know where they are. I really just want her to leave me alone, but I respond to texts in a civil but perfunctory manner in order to set the tone if we do run into each other in the future.
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Old 01-15-2019, 09:57 PM
 
Location: Rochester, WA
5,402 posts, read 3,011,124 times
Reputation: 14801
You have a mom who you have a strained relationship with and hope to never see again, and you think your most important problem is about binoculars.

I know everyone who has a bad relationship with a parent hates the "my parents are dead" card, and I get it... some parents suck... but it's unfortunately the only card I have to play. I don't know yours. My mother died when I was 24. She never got to meet my husband or see my farm or share the rest of my life. I miss her all.the.time.


You will have to answer your question for yourself.... I don't know.
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Old 01-15-2019, 09:58 PM
 
Location: British Columbia ♥ 🍁 ♥
7,107 posts, read 6,515,241 times
Reputation: 13894
Well you asked, so yeah, I think you are being petty. You took her father's binoculars and begrudge her borrowing them back because you have a personal grudge against her for other reasons that I don't care about. But if they're that important to you to keep for sentimental reasons and you don't want to tell her you don't trust her with them then you have the option of lying about her dad's binoculars and sending her another more modern set of binoculars that she can keep. You can easily get a small, inexpensive, gently used set at a pawn shop and send her those. But maybe you don't want to make any kind of peace offering and do something nice like that either .... you know .... because you have a personal grudge against her. You could just continue to rub salt in her wounds and tell her you don't trust her with her father's binoculars and that you don't want anything more to do with her. Then you can let go of your grudge against her.


.
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Old 01-15-2019, 10:05 PM
 
3,036 posts, read 1,699,917 times
Reputation: 3431
Quote:
Originally Posted by JrzDefector View Post
My mother and I are estranged. She thinks if she waits long enough I will forget about why and pick up where we left off. That's not going to happen. She texted to wish me happy new year. I responded in kind and wished her a good time on her upcoming trip and then told her I had to go to bed, ending the conversation. I kept it polite, but shut it down. My desire is for us to be able to be civil on occasions we encounter each other, but that is more and more unlikely. I moved to Colorado and she is leaving my home state to move to Florida soon (YAY!). We will have no reason to enounter each other again.

But it seems like she HAD to push a boundary. She recently asked me in a text to send my grandfather's binoculars to her for her upcoming vacation. We have not had a conversation in two years. My grandfather has been dead for 30 years. She has made no mention of the binnoculars in that time. I know exactly where they are but I don't want to send them to her because I don't want them damaged or lost, and I have no faith that she will send them back when she's done. I'm not a sentimental person, but I like knowing I have a good set of old school binoculars and I like that they were my grandfather's (her father's) - I didn't get any keepsakes or pictures when he died.

So I'm thinking I'm just going to ignore her text and if she pesters just tell her I don't know where they are. I really just want her to leave me alone, but I respond to texts in a civil but perfunctory manner in order to set the tone if we do run into each other in the future.
You are doing all the right things.
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Old 01-16-2019, 01:28 AM
 
741 posts, read 388,809 times
Reputation: 3448
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoisite View Post
Well you asked, so yeah, I think you are being petty. You took her father's binoculars and begrudge her borrowing them back because you have a personal grudge against her for other reasons that I don't care about. But if they're that important to you to keep for sentimental reasons and you don't want to tell her you don't trust her with them then you have the option of lying about her dad's binoculars and sending her another more modern set of binoculars that she can keep. You can easily get a small, inexpensive, gently used set at a pawn shop and send her those. But maybe you don't want to make any kind of peace offering and do something nice like that either .... you know .... because you have a personal grudge against her. You could just continue to rub salt in her wounds and tell her you don't trust her with her father's binoculars and that you don't want anything more to do with her. Then you can let go of your grudge against her.
Those who haven’t had a difficult relationship with a parent don’t understand the dynamics at work here. You’re trying to apply normal logic to a dysfunctional relationship.

Jrzdefector, there’s a way to do this that doesn’t involve lying, maintains your boundaries and minimizes drama. Tell her the binoculars are the only keepsake you have of him and you don’t want to part with them. Don’t say anything about her potentially losing them or anything that could be considered inflammatory or an insult. Just keep it calm and neutral. They’re your binoculars and you’re not required to loan them out if you don’t want to, not even to your mother. There’s a good chance you’ll never get them back. If she tries to coerce you or gets angry, just say “I’m sorry, but my answer is no. I hope you can understand.” Then don’t respond anymore to further texts or messages about it. She can get upset all she wants, but if you stay neutral and don’t react, the drama will end with her.

Last edited by FairMindedLL; 01-16-2019 at 01:39 AM..
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Old 01-16-2019, 01:47 AM
 
1,526 posts, read 387,348 times
Reputation: 2846
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diana Holbrook View Post
You have a mom who you have a strained relationship with and hope to never see again, and you think your most important problem is about binoculars.

I know everyone who has a bad relationship with a parent hates the "my parents are dead" card, and I get it... some parents suck... but it's unfortunately the only card I have to play. I don't know yours. My mother died when I was 24. She never got to meet my husband or see my farm or share the rest of my life. I miss her all.the.time.


You will have to answer your question for yourself.... I don't know.
Sorry you lost your mother.

We don't know the OP, and for all we know, the mother is toxic to be around. If that is the case, it might be best for the OP to stay away from her.

However, there are some people who if they perceived to be slighted in the last bit or if you don't 100% agree with them on everything, they cut people off entirely or treat them harshly and then cut them off.
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Old 01-16-2019, 03:48 AM
 
1,101 posts, read 1,810,317 times
Reputation: 4587
Yeah, 30 years and no mention of the binoculars til now? She’s trying to manipulate you into engaging with her. I wouldn’t reply to her texts regarding them.
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Old 01-16-2019, 06:47 AM
 
3,604 posts, read 1,620,602 times
Reputation: 13508
I don’t know your situation but I do know You seem to be sending mixed messages by off and on contact and yes being petty. You don’t want to have a relationship then say so and let her go and stop egging her on. Stop playing into this.


If you have told her why you estranged her, and you are estranged then be estranged.
That means no contact.
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Old 01-16-2019, 06:56 AM
 
3,138 posts, read 1,642,355 times
Reputation: 8580
You have to do what is right for you, and only you can decide that because there is 40+ years of history that none of us know.

From my experience with you, you are a rational fair minded person.

However, in my own personal way of doing things, I'm more of a "I'm either in or I'm out" kind of person. I either have a full relationship with someone or I don't have contact with them at all. (By "full" I don't mean in terms of amount of time spent -- I mean "full" in the sense that if they request something from me -- either time or assistance or a favor -- I'm open to fulfilling it if I can.)

Again, this is my own way of doing things based on it being really hard for me to live in gray areas.
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Old 01-16-2019, 06:59 AM
 
Location: Dallas, TX and Las Vegas, NV
5,664 posts, read 4,372,328 times
Reputation: 11619
Go to Amazon and order a cheap pair of traveling binoculars and have them sent to her. I Recently got a great, inexpensive set that fits in my purse. Just text reply “Binoculars on their way to you.......”. You don’t have to tell her any more. When she gets them she’ll figure it out.
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