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Thread: Mom is Sucking Me Dry

  1. #1
    Wiggin

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    Mom is Sucking Me Dry

    Hello! This is my first post here, although I have lurked often and I find it to be a good community so I am finally going to ask for some advice of my own. Also, I wasn't sure if I should post this here or in the Personal Growth forums, but I thought this might be most fitting.

    I'm a 26 year old woman who is currently living with my Mother. I have a well-paying job, have lived on my own before, but due to some family issues I was asked to move back in and I agreed [stupidly] and now here is my issue.

    My boyfriend and I have been together for 4 years. We are intending on moving out together within the next 6 months, however I know that this will pose some problems for my Mother and this is starting to stress me out. I've lived on my own before, but when I moved out, it put a strain on my relationship with my Mother. She didn't speak to me for nearly 4 months. I don't know what it is as my 3 other siblings have each experienced the same thing - it's almost as though instead of seeing it as her children thriving, she sees it as an insult that her children are leaving her.

    I haven't told her about my plans. I know it's something I'll have to start easing into the conversation at some point soon but I am just dreading this. When our family was going through our issues, she had become depressed and essentially stopped working and now is somewhat financially dependent on me - I pay the majority of her rent, I pay for her groceries and prescriptions, and whatever else she needs, including my own expenses. Like I said - I make enough money that I can more than support my own self but I am starting to see that it's mostly going to her and it's making it difficult to put money aside so I can start a life with my boyfriend - we've been together for 4 years and aren't living together. We feel that it's important for our relationship that we start thinking towards our future, and living together would be the next step, but it's tearing me up knowing that when I leave my Mother I don't know what's going to happen to her financially.

    She's 50 years old and is basically relying on me to take care of her, and not because she is incapable of working, it's simply the pattern she's fallen into. She's done it with my other siblings and now me being the last, I don't know how that's going to work out. I often hear of people complaining because their parents are kicking them out and they don't know what to do - I wish I had that problem! I feel like I've never really had the chance to go out on my own because she keeps reeling me back in at some point. She has always been a 'squeaker' - she just squeaks by constantly, never really getting ahead. I hate to sound resentful because I know it's my Mom. I know she loves me, I know she took care of me growing up, and I know at some point we are going to have to take care of her as well. I just feel like that started as soon as we were able to make our own money, we were expected to support her, and we do because she's our Mother.

    I'm ripping my hair out here! I could just really use some support. I've turned to my siblings but the picture they paint is bleak - they've all gone through this, some multiple times, and they just kind of sympathize with me that I'm currently the one dealing with it. When they've moved out and on with their lives, it normally came with a period of being treated badly by our Mom as a result and eventually guilt-tripped into letting her live with them or giving her money every month.

    I just want out. I want to be able to be my own person and not have to feel so horribly guilty about it. Any advice is appreciated.

  2. #2
    SpottiOtti
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    I'm sorry that you're going through/will go through this. It sounds like what you're asking for advice on, is on being your own person without feeling guilty. This is a long process, and it usually begins when someone moves out of the parental home, and usually they get support from their parents and society for adapting to traditional life-stage roles, which provides positive reinforcement for them to do other grown-up things. Through standing on their own two feet, a person begins to get a sense of who they are as an individual in society.

    In your case, you get no support from your mother for achieving these life milestones, and it doesn't sound like you ever will. So, if your mother won't give you emotional kudos for growing up and becoming your own woman, you'll have to find it somewhere else. You can find it from your boyfriend, sounds like, and you can also provide it to yourself. But the process can't begin until you get out from under her roof and influence. That's the first step. At that point, you can begin to figure out how you'll handle her manipulative behavior. Boundary-setting will be important, so maybe you should read up on that.

  3. #3
    kamurj
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