Q I’m 25 and have lived with my mum and brothers all my life. I want to leave home and share a flat with my boyfriend, We’ve planned it all out and the money side of things should be OK.
When I told my mum she went ballistic! She accused me of not respecting her values and betraying her and the family.
My brothers are all younger than me and I have helped her to bring them up, but I want my own life now.
She’s been guilt-tripping me by saying that the boys will be worse off if I go and she can’t cope on her own. It seems like she wants to keep using me as an unpaid child-minder and not to have a life and maybe children of my own.
My boyfriend is keeping out of it because he’s seen my mum’s temper and says I have to make the decision for myself.
It’s hard because my mum is also crying, sulking and telling the neighbours what an ungrateful daughter I am. I don’t think I am, I just want to make my own life away from her and the boys.
She said last night that if I leave she’ll never speak to me again and I won’t be welcome in her house to see my brothers ever again.
I’m torn between my mum and my boyfriend. What can I do?
A Your mum is thinking and behaving in a childlike, selfish and manipulative way. She has come to believe that making others feel guilty is a good way to make them do as she wants them to.
You aren’t responsible for easing her fears or her need to have things ‘her way’. She has to become aware of what she’s doing and be interested enough to find out why – and to change it when she realises the effect it has upon you (and other people).
She might never become aware of her behaviour – especially because it’s worked well for her in the past, and so she’s unlikely to want to change it. [Read more…]