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Difficulty Moving On From Controlling Parents


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How To Say Goodbye To The Past And ...
How To Say Goodbye To The Past And Make A Fresh Start

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I moved away from home last year and for the first time have begun to see my parents for who they really are. In these moments of clarity, I realize how manipulated I have been for the past 20 years...unfortunately, I immediately regret these thoughts because I feel disloyal to my parents. I know that this is common for adults who have been emotionally abused and controlled as children, but I fear that it is hindering me as an adult. Whenever my mother comes to visit, she tells me I live too far away and I need to move back home...they make me feel guilty because I only call once a week, and they think that it has NOTHING to do with them...that I am suddenly a bad person because I don't want to spend much time with them. I usually try to call my mother every Sunday, but this past week I didn't call until Monday afternoon. She sent me a text saying if I didn't call in one hour she would have the police come to my apartment and check on me and if I wasn't there she would keep sending them until I got back. She didn't even bother to call my roommate or my fiance because I don't think she was really worried...I think she figured threatening me with the police would get me to call her sooner than if she called one of them. I find myself lying to her and hiding things from her because every time I open up to her she uses what I say against me to try and gain control. I am getting married soon and she HATES my fiance because he loves me as much (if not more) than she does. I think she feels threatened by him. We wanted to wait to get married until I finished school, but my parents were making our lives together so difficult that we figured we might as well go ahead and tie the knot. Now I am able to get grants and loans to pay for school and rent so my family does not control me financially anymore. It is so hard to stop feeling guilty for separating myself from them. I know that healthy adults can move on with their lives and ignore negativity, but it is so much harder to do when it is coming from your own parents. I know there are people out there who have dealt with similar, if not worse, problems of their own...any advice?

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I deal with the same thing, but I haven't moved out yet... so congrats on making that step. Over-protective parents like these don't realize the harm they're causing by now allowing their adult children more freedom. Moving out becomes harder and harder.

 

I had my own taste of freedom for two weeks, while on vacation with a friend on the other side of the country. It was amazing being able to cook and clean for myself without having someone breathing down my back. Coming home was actually stressful for me.

 

The only thing I can tell you is... you can't control your parents. They'll continue to do crazy things if they feel they want to do them. I think you just need to slowly, gradually continue to break it off. Call a bit later again a couple of weeks from now, despite her threats. That kind of thing. And maybe she'll eventually learn to let go!!

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**chuckle** I'm almost 50 and I STILL get the odd admonishment from my mother that I don't call often enough. I try to call once or twice a week, but sometimes, depending on my schedule, I don't get the chance. It's especially difficult when you're two or three time zones away.

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Ok - in the first place the police will usually not respond to a call like that unless the person has been missing for over 24 hours and even then they need more information. So that was nonsense.

 

But you need to stand up to her and tell her that if she threatens you again she won't get a call at all. Basically, tell you that you are now an adult making adult decisions and she has to come to terms with that or your relationship will be strained, sporadic or non-existent. Say that you appreciate her love and concern but she is being over-protective and controlling.

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I'm 32. My mother gets angry if I don't call more than once a day and she lives with me. She expects me to call when I get to work and several times during the day. If I don't, she gets furious and then she cries. She does some of the most ludacris things you can imagine. She goes through my belongings when I'm not there. She tells other family members (other siblings that don't call very much at all and rarely even see her) that I'm a * * * * , etc. I'm not quite sure why she even thinks that...but that's another story. And when I get angry with her, the guilt that I feel is horrendous. I understand how it might hurt you to know that she is angry with you over a missed phone call, but you have NOTHING to feel guilty for. A mother's love is unconditional and her love obviously has conditions. I say this because I know and I've been under the thumb of my mother for 32 years. And when I see someone else under this control, I can only think one thing....RUN!

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