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Old 09-19-2010, 05:09 PM
 
Location: here
24,843 posts, read 31,774,677 times
Reputation: 32501

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Your mom sounds a little like my MIL. She's mean to her own family but her friends think she's just wonderful. As others have said, you can't change her. In my case, I was so fed up with my MIL I considered cutting her out, but I thought it would be wiser to continue to let the kids see her and figure out for themselves what she's like. The older cousins are already figuring it out. We are in contact via text and facebook, and occasionally she calls, but I haven't called her in months. Neither has my husband. Limit your contact with her and don't feed into the drama. I guess it is up to your sister to decide what she wants to do about grandma.
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Old 09-19-2010, 05:13 PM
 
Location: Australia
1,492 posts, read 2,874,284 times
Reputation: 1716
At the end of the day, you are responsible for your actions and your mom is responsible for hers.

By all means find her a book but I suspect she would not be interested.

Consider looking at ways to look after yourself. Like don't get drawn down by this. There must be ways for you to stay positive and have a good self image whilst maintaining a non judgemental or professional relationship with your mum. I doubt if trying to ignore her or freezer out is the right thing but also there must be ways where she does not get a sense of fulfilment out of treating you the wrong way.
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Old 09-19-2010, 05:19 PM
NCN
 
Location: NC/SC Border Patrol
21,139 posts, read 22,870,914 times
Reputation: 23285
When it comes to change, the only person you can change is yourself.

Something that is very effective for me is to pray for the person who had a problem they don't realize they have. God is more than able to change people and since your Mom goes to church, maybe a miracle will happen.

Now if you really want to live in the furnace, just give her the book unless you can say something like, "I know you are always trying to be the perfect mother, grandmother, etc. so I saw this book and thought you might appreciate it." Never, never suggest to her that she needs to change. There are many good parenting books for parents and grandparents. Nobody will ever be a perfect parent or grandparent.
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Old 09-19-2010, 06:29 PM
 
2,060 posts, read 5,263,237 times
Reputation: 1660
I cut my toxic mom out years ago. Best thing I ever did. My kids don't need to grow up dealing with the same crap I did. They have two grandparents that are awesome, they don't need any more.
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Old 09-19-2010, 06:40 PM
 
Location: here and then there...!
947 posts, read 3,125,576 times
Reputation: 596
ok, so i can do this, actually haven't talked to her in a month and half, and she is the kind of person to call and call... if i don't call back with in her time then, she calls my work to try to "catch" me -- she even has said those words... "oh good i caught you"! ugh... calls a good friend that i live really close to... bugs him... ugh
i know it sounds like a copout but like said before, tried to talk with her in the past and she just cries and cries...
sent email about month and half ago...

anyway, since then she has sent postcards, called a few times, emails...
i did make it clear in email, but ... not a surprise still her actions are the same...

well, glad i am not the only one... but sorry too that others are going thru and have gone thru this crap.

i am in Southern CA and my sis and her family are in the Sac area and our mom is in the same small town...

so ridiculous.

about a year or 2 ago she gave me a book about, bipolar people, how to cope with them and claiming my sister is bipolar....

Anyway, you all are so helpful!
surprised at the numerous replies, and very thankful.
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Old 09-19-2010, 06:45 PM
 
Location: here and then there...!
947 posts, read 3,125,576 times
Reputation: 596
Also,
you would Think that "older" grandparent age individuals would be happy or at least happy-ish, have fun with their grandkids etc...

it is amazing to me how many mothers of adult "kids" are toxic!

wow!
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Old 09-19-2010, 11:07 PM
 
Location: West Coast USA
1,577 posts, read 1,959,959 times
Reputation: 3140
You do not need what I went through, but I think we had the same mom. Another book I would add to the list (although I am old-school, having bought and read the books years and years ago) is M Scott Peck's People of the Lie. This would be for you, to help you single out who your mother is and why she is what she is. Very insightful and still for sale.

Mother was somewhat kind to my children up to a point in time. While visiting her, when I saw her start with my daughter what she had done to me, I packed up our things and went home. We soon moved hundreds of miles away from here instead of a mere 450 miles away. Not the end of our problems, but it certainly limited them.

Mother lived a long, long life. . . .
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Old 09-20-2010, 05:41 AM
 
Location: In the real world!
2,178 posts, read 8,817,578 times
Reputation: 2812
There are to many toxic parents, but none of us see our own faults so she don't see what she is doing as wrong, the rest of the world has a problem, not her!

I think you are doing all you can do already and that is to cut off contact or limit it.

One of the hardest lessons I ever learned in my life was that I couldn't jump into someone else's life and fix it, but once I understood that, life became so much simpler for me. Only your sister can fix hers and what Grandma is doing to the kids.
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Old 09-20-2010, 10:41 AM
 
1,424 posts, read 4,882,126 times
Reputation: 1952
Maybe there's a way for you to accept her for what she is and maintain your relationship while refusing to engage (in a kind way) in the drama. She is your mom, and by no means is my advice intended to "guilt" you into anything. But when she's no longer around, hopefully you will be able to look back without regrets about the way you handled your conflicts. You can't change her, you can only try to manage your side of your interactions.
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Old 09-20-2010, 10:49 AM
 
32,525 posts, read 32,473,480 times
Reputation: 32423
Since you are looking for books I'd highly recommend:

"Don't Let The Jerks Get The Best Of You - Advice for dealing with difficult people" by Paul Meier M.D.

Terrific book. Easy to read and understand. Enormously helpful.
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