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Advice on how to deal with formerly estranged mother after father's passing


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55 minutes ago, RuedeRivoli said:

No one knows I needed to for my own survival. A few months before I moved out, I attempted to throw myself under a train and after a bystander brought me home, she said to me: "You know, the day you die, no one will care. People will probably care for a week or so and then move on". 

Your mother's response to this is downright CRUEL.  I have NO idea how old you were when this happened, but it it concerning that you had one actual suicide attempt.  Again...it is my true hope that you reach out in whatever way you can to a professional, be it in person or via the web.  

 

55 minutes ago, RuedeRivoli said:

All communication is routed through my mother

Are your siblings over 18?  Why is all communication routed through your mother?

 

55 minutes ago, RuedeRivoli said:

She can't even sort any of the paperwork out and can't provide for my siblings the way my father did. My main worry now is the mortgage on their house. I'm flying all the way there to sort the mortgage out so that my siblings can keep a roof over their heads. 

Your mom needs an attorney to probate your Father's Estate.  Saying she can't "figure out the paperwork" is just another way to manipulate you.  BELIEVE ME, she WILL find a way to stay in the house.  Everything that your dad had goes to her. (You mentioned the house, retirement accounts, etc.)  She does NOT sound like the kind of woman who can't "fend for herself".  Again...I would NOT GO,

 

55 minutes ago, RuedeRivoli said:

my dad was urgently hospitalized for the first time in his life in September as he had blocked arteries and a weak heart and no one thought to call me to tell me. He was there for more than a week and three months later he was gone. They robbed me of an opportunity to make peace with him when they knew he was hanging on a thread. 

This is also heartbreaking.  WHY would you put yourself in just mental anguish to help people who certainly do NOT care for your feelings?

 

55 minutes ago, RuedeRivoli said:

 I'm so mad destiny chose to take my precious dad away and leave me with her. 

 

I think I mentioned earlier that, sadly, I lost my Mom last year.  It's just AWFUL pain, and ANGER is part of the grieving process.  

 Be gentle with yourself.  You need to allow yourself the time and space to properly grieve the loss of your  beloved Dad...

I would stay away from your Mom.

As always, my best...

 

Edited by -CallingAllAngels
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If you're putting yourself through all of this out of guilt or because you think you have to because your dad would want you to...I can assure you that neither of those are good reasons to put your mental, emotional and physical health at risk. Do you really think your dad would want you to be at the point where you're seriously contemplating harming yourself? I strongly doubt it.

Please consult a professional asap so you can get good medical care and also so you can get a good plan for how to deal with your debilitating feelings of guilt.

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You know what?  I understand how you feel so very well, as I said above.  My mother never said a good thing about me that I ever knew and I let it run off my back like water.  You need to learn to not let her get to you, and yes I know it's hard.  Stay in a hotel, not at mother's house.  Let. her *** and moan at you for doing that, but you'll be glad you did.  It should not take long to gather papers for the lawyer, that's his job to sort things out.  I put it on my brother to do a lot of whatever mother wanted when my dad died as he lived about 5 mins away and I was over an hour away.  Plus he liked her and I didnt.  Everyone survived and I'm sure there was more than enough bad words said about me but honestly I didnt care.

Put some of this on your siblings, you dont have to do it all.  Get that other phone line, your life will be simpler.  Let her complain if you dont answer the phone or call back right away.  She'll get over it.  Somehow.

When my dad died I told my husband - the wrong one died.

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22 hours ago, Seraphim said:

Okay, what in reality administration is there that needs to be done if everything is left to her ? 
 

I don’t think you even need to go or even talk to her. Your siblings are not your responsibility they are hers. 

I agree in theory, but I tried to get her to sort out the mortgage protection on the house and she said it was "done" then it turns out it wasn't done. She's no clue what she's on about. I'm only flying for this really. Sure, the house goes to her as she co-signed on it, but ultimately, it belongs to all of us because my dad bought it for us, not for her. It's his legacy, I want to protect it. I have a legal background and I work in finance myself, so it's my remit of expertise and hiring a lawyer is expensive. 

21 hours ago, boltnrun said:

If you're putting yourself through all of this out of guilt or because you think you have to because your dad would want you to...I can assure you that neither of those are good reasons to put your mental, emotional and physical health at risk. Do you really think your dad would want you to be at the point where you're seriously contemplating harming yourself? I strongly doubt it.

Please consult a professional asap so you can get good medical care and also so you can get a good plan for how to deal with your debilitating feelings of guilt.

Thank you, I will see if I can find a decent therapist out there. I haven't spoken to her since Sunday and I feel much better, but I know it's only temporary because the thoughts will probably creep back in the moment I speak to her. 

16 hours ago, melancholy123 said:

You know what?  I understand how you feel so very well, as I said above.  My mother never said a good thing about me that I ever knew and I let it run off my back like water.  You need to learn to not let her get to you, and yes I know it's hard.  Stay in a hotel, not at mother's house.  Let. her *** and moan at you for doing that, but you'll be glad you did.  It should not take long to gather papers for the lawyer, that's his job to sort things out.  I put it on my brother to do a lot of whatever mother wanted when my dad died as he lived about 5 mins away and I was over an hour away.  Plus he liked her and I didnt.  Everyone survived and I'm sure there was more than enough bad words said about me but honestly I didnt care.

Put some of this on your siblings, you dont have to do it all.  Get that other phone line, your life will be simpler.  Let her complain if you dont answer the phone or call back right away.  She'll get over it.  Somehow.

When my dad died I told my husband - the wrong one died.

The bolded bit. I absolutely hate feeling this way, but this is how I feel. I'm so ashamed to feel this way, but it is exactly how I feel. She made my dad's life an utter misery and he passed at a young age (64) and I bet she will live until 90. I can't picture myself dealing with her for another 30 years. She's not someone I'd ever introduce my future husband or kids to. 

My brother is 25 and lives with her. My other siblings are 18 and 19. They're all "old" enough to sort these things out. My brother has been doing a lot of the work in all fairness. She also her her own brother who visits her literally every single day. Plus, every single time and I talk, she always says: "I'm so lucky, tons of people are coming to the house every day to visit me". Then I think to myself: "OK, then why on earth do you want me to talk to you for 2 hours every single day and stay with you during my trip to provide companionship?". She's got plenty of support I don't have. I've been on my own since my dad died and no one has visited me or anything because I don't have many friends, so I'm literally running on empty when I try to support her emotionally because I'm pouring from an empty bucket. 

I'll definitely stay in a hotel. I don't feel comfortable sleeping there for a week straight. My dad is no longer there, so I don't see the point in making an effort. 

I just turned my phone off for the evening because I know she'll call. I've had a rough day with work stress, I don't need to listen to her talk about what she ate for dinner / lunch for 40 minutes straight.  

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22 hours ago, -CallingAllAngels said:

Your mother's response to this is downright CRUEL.  I have NO idea how old you were when this happened, but it it concerning that you had one actual suicide attempt.  Again...it is my true hope that you reach out in whatever way you can to a professional, be it in person or via the web.  

 

Are your siblings over 18?  Why is all communication routed through your mother?

 

Your mom needs an attorney to probate your Father's Estate.  Saying she can't "figure out the paperwork" is just another way to manipulate you.  BELIEVE ME, she WILL find a way to stay in the house.  Everything that your dad had goes to her. (You mentioned the house, retirement accounts, etc.)  She does NOT sound like the kind of woman who can't "fend for herself".  Again...I would NOT GO,

 

This is also heartbreaking.  WHY would you put yourself in just mental anguish to help people who certainly do NOT care for your feelings?

 

 

I think I mentioned earlier that, sadly, I lost my Mom last year.  It's just AWFUL pain, and ANGER is part of the grieving process.  

 Be gentle with yourself.  You need to allow yourself the time and space to properly grieve the loss of your  beloved Dad...

I would stay away from your Mom.

As always, my best...

 

I was 23 at the time. She was an awful mother to say the least. When I was 9, my then best friend visited our house with her mom and after they left, she said looked at me in the eyes and said: "I want you to remember something: in front of people, I will always act like I love you, but in reality, I don't. Keep that in mind". She said that to me out of the blue and it's stuck with me. I've hated her ever since. Nothing will ever change how I feel about her and certainly not after her repeated affairs she dragged me into. 

All my siblings are over 18. I don't know why all communication is routed through her. She picks up the phone whenever I call. She is very controlling is all I can say. 

It's true, they did not care about my feelings when my dad was in the hospital. I find it very strange they didn't even try to call. It's what normal people would do. When I asked her why she never called, she said: "I didn't think of it". Logic and empathy are not words I would ever juxtapose next to her name. 

How did my dad manage to live with her for 32 years when it was an arranged marriage in the first place, I'll never know. 

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I would ask yourself if you feel the mental strain is worth it. You think she will leave it to you ? I know when my dad died I got $1503 from life insurance and a kiss me bottom and his sister got his RRSP and whatever was in his account. 

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My dad died at 65 and mother at 89.  I hear you!  I cut myself almost completely off from her as it was necessary for my mental wellbeing.  You need to learn to do the same.  Plus get over the guilt.  To me guilt is a waste of emotion.  You know she treats you like crap just like my mother treated me like crap.  She used to say - you have a face only a mother could love.  As young as 5 I'd think, yeah, but you dont.  I got $10K when she died, my kids got $5k each and my brother got her house and everything in it and her bank accounts!

The bank can help with the mortgage issues, it's not your job.  Siblings at home can help with various things.  She's trying to draw you in and you need to strengthen your backbone and say no, sorry I cant do that.

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On 1/11/2022 at 8:51 PM, melancholy123 said:

My dad died at 65 and mother at 89.  I hear you!  I cut myself almost completely off from her as it was necessary for my mental wellbeing.  You need to learn to do the same.  Plus get over the guilt.  To me guilt is a waste of emotion.  You know she treats you like crap just like my mother treated me like crap.  She used to say - you have a face only a mother could love.  As young as 5 I'd think, yeah, but you dont.  I got $10K when she died, my kids got $5k each and my brother got her house and everything in it and her bank accounts!

The bank can help with the mortgage issues, it's not your job.  Siblings at home can help with various things.  She's trying to draw you in and you need to strengthen your backbone and say no, sorry I cant do that.

I'm really sorry to hear this. This is an awful thing to say to anyone, let alone to a child. I simply can't understand that such parents don't realize how cruel their behaviors / words are. What is the point of having children if you are going to treat them poorly?

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Thanks. She is the reason I moved out at 18 and never moved back.  I vowed to live in a cardboard  box if I had to rather than go back to her house.  That never happened.  I had a job and an apt.

I cant answer your question other than back then girls were often treated as lesser people than boys, my brother was the golden haired child who could do no wrong.

This is why I tell you to do your best to not let her get to you.  You are an important and valuable person in your own right and you deserve to be happy in whatever way works for you.

She had no clue of the damage she did to me.

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My mom and my uncle, her brother has so much bad blood between them, that they hadn't seen or spoken to eachother in oof, who knows how long.  If there was a wedding, they'd be at opposite ends.  It wasn't like a year, make it years and years and years.  Then, when their dad died, they comforted eachother, and worked together on funeral arrangements, and it seemed they are taking care of eachother.  Then the funeral is done, and they moved on and back to living life without eachother.

So just be cordial, put your animosity aside, and bury your dad.  Then, if you want to connect with your siblings, you can, and you can just block her calls once you get back home.

When a person dies, grief makes you reconsider lots of actions and things, but in time, true colors come back, and I'm sure she'll be back to her selfish horrific self in no time.

I'm very sorry for your loss 😞

Edited by tattoobunnie
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2 hours ago, tattoobunnie said:

My mom and my uncle, her brother has so much bad blood between them, that they hadn't seen or spoken to eachother in oof, who knows how long.  If there was a wedding, they'd be at opposite ends.  It wasn't like a year, make it years and years and years.  Then, when their dad died, they comforted eachother, and worked together on funeral arrangements, and it seemed they are taking care of eachother.  Then the funeral is done, and they moved on and back to living life without eachother.

So just be cordial, put your animosity aside, and bury your dad.  Then, if you want to connect with your siblings, you can, and you can just block her calls once you get back home.

When a person dies, grief makes you reconsider lots of actions and things, but in time, true colors come back, and I'm sure she'll be back to her selfish horrific self in no time.

I'm very sorry for your loss 😞

Thank you for your kind words. 

I have been trying to put my animosity aside to the best extent that I can. It is difficult because she's already showing signs of her narcissism creeping back. For instance, if I talk about how I cried about my dad's passing, she cuts me off and changes the topic altogether to talk about something trivial only to come back to it again to talk about how she cried all day or how my siblings keep hugging her because she's the only parent they have left. We'll see how long her new persona will last, but I don't have much hope, one's true nature always comes back to the surface. 

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On 1/10/2022 at 3:45 PM, -CallingAllAngels said:

Your mom needs an attorney to probate your Father's Estate.  Saying she can't "figure out the paperwork" is just another way to manipulate you.  BELIEVE ME, she WILL find a way to stay in the house.  Everything that your dad had goes to her. (You mentioned the house, retirement accounts, etc.)  She does NOT sound like the kind of woman who can't "fend for herself".  Again...I would NOT GO,

I agree. This is not someone who requires your help. This is someone who withheld warning about Covid and who prevents you from communicating with your siblings.

Think about how she's able to manipulate you into spending hours on the phone--and you'd want to go see this person IN person?

Honey, the woman made you suicidal and already has you contemplating self harm.

Stay away, and get thee to a therapist quickly.

Phone a hotline, and ask for an emergency referral. You will thank yourself later.

And if you do opt to take this woman's call, start off saying, "Hi, I have about 15 minutes. How are you?" When she drops battery acid on you for limiting your time, simply ask if she'd prefer tomorrow instead.

But understand, with each convo, you are getting sucked in--and for no good reason. I'd speak with a therapist for help, and I'd silence my phone.

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Thank you, @catfeeder

I have come to an agreement that I would be the one calling whenever I have some spare time (which for me is going to limit itself to once a week maximum). Sure, the week after my father passed I called everyday to check in and because I wanted to follow up on the funeral and help my brother with paperwork, but now that the funeral has passed, there's no need for me to ring every day. I told her I had my driver license (because before I cut her off, I did not drive) and in her true fashion, no "Congratulations" or "Oh that's great". She did the exact same as when I passed my final college exams, she went silent and changed topics. Actually, when I passed my final college exams, she said: "I don't care". 

She's already making plans for when I come home (sharing my former bedroom with my teenage sister, providing companionship and specifically asked me to take the full week off). If I visit, I'll book something to stay on my own, visit for a few hours a day and leave. To be honest, I don't even know if I feel comfortable visiting. My dad is not there anymore, so it makes zero sense for me to come and visit her for an entire week to provide "companionship". She already thinks our relationship has been "salvaged" over my dad's death. She's not my concern to be honest because she my dad would have never developed heart problems if it wasn't for the stress and mistreatment she put him under. 

The worst part is that she makes absolutely no sense. My dad was buried in a third country (meaning not where I live, not where she lives, but somewhere else) and she initially told me he'd be buried somewhere in the mountains. That annoyed me, but I had no say on this. Then on Wednesday I had a call with her and I asked her to give me the exact place where my dad was buried and she said: "Oh no, he was buried in the city, not in the mountains, we had an agreement with someone in your dad's family. The cemetery easily accessible". Then I asked about when she agreed to this and she said: "The day before the funeral". 

It took her days to tell me the truth about where my dad was buried and I had to ask. She didn't volunteer this information. She keeps concealing information (COVID, the cemetery etc..). I wonder what else she is hiding at this point because not informing your daughter about where exactly her father is buried is inappropriate. 

Edited by RuedeRivoli
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1 hour ago, RuedeRivoli said:

Thank you, @catfeeder

I have come to an agreement that I would be the one calling whenever I have some spare time (which for me is going to limit itself to once a week maximum). Sure, the week after my father passed I called everyday to check in and because I wanted to follow up on the funeral and help my brother with paperwork, but now that the funeral has passed, there's no need for me to ring every day. I told her I had my driver license (because before I cut her off, I did not drive) and in her true fashion, no "Congratulations" or "Oh that's great". She did the exact same as when I passed my final college exams, she went silent and changed topics. Actually, when I passed my final college exams, she said: "I don't care". 

She's already making plans for when I come home (sharing my former bedroom with my teenage sister, providing companionship and specifically asked me to take the full week off). If I visit, I'll book something to stay on my own, visit for a few hours a day and leave. To be honest, I don't even know if I feel comfortable visiting. My dad is not there anymore, so it makes zero sense for me to come and visit her for an entire week to provide "companionship". She already thinks our relationship has been "salvaged" over my dad's death. She's not my concern to be honest because she my dad would have never developed heart problems if it wasn't for the stress and mistreatment she put him under. 

The worst part is that she makes absolutely no sense. My dad was buried in a third country (meaning not where I live, not where she lives, but somewhere else) and she initially told me he'd be buried somewhere in the mountains. That annoyed me, but I had no say on this. Then on Wednesday I had a call with her and I asked her to give me the exact place where my dad was buried and she said: "Oh no, he was buried in the city, not in the mountains, we had an agreement with someone in your dad's family. The cemetery easily accessible". Then I asked about when she agreed to this and she said: "The day before the funeral". 

It took her days to tell me the truth about where my dad was buried and I had to ask. She didn't volunteer this information. She keeps concealing information (COVID, the cemetery etc..). I wonder what else she is hiding at this point because not informing your daughter about where exactly her father is buried is inappropriate. 

Don’t go. Your mom has had pathological animosity for you your entire life . She isn’t going to leave you this house , no matter how you try and wrangle her. I know you feel it should be yours but the spouse supersedes anyone. As you say your dad is gone and protection you had is gone. I would let this idea of a house go. The house isn’t your dad, he is in your heart and in your mind forever. I will guarantee you she will leave this house to someone else it won’t be you no matter how much you wish for it. It is horrible to think of but ,really think of what kind of woman she has been to you nothing good will come out of visiting her. So please don’t count on getting that house and go there because you think you will get it. 

Your siblings, they are entirely her responsibility. You can’t save them either . The person you need to save is your self. 
 

It pains me to say any of this but I think you need to be realistic. When my father died he left over $30,000 to his one SISTER. He left my brother and I a very paltry amount in a life insurance policy. He was very abusive to everyone who ever entered his life . In the end the people who helped him most in the world my mother my brother and I he left us nothing and left everything to his family of origin well his one sister. Yes ,it’s a horrible kick in the face, but it’s reality that abusive parents are not going to grace you when they’re gone. 
 

So let material things go you will always have your dad. And save your sanity like he would have wanted you to. 

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18 minutes ago, Seraphim said:

Don’t go. Your mom has had pathological animosity for you your entire life . She isn’t going to leave you this house , no matter how you try and wrangle her. I know you feel it should be yours but the spouse supersedes anyone. As you say your dad is gone and protection you had is gone. I would let this idea of a house go. The house isn’t your dad, he is in your heart and in your mind forever. I will guarantee you she will leave this house to someone else it won’t be you no matter how much you wish for it. It is horrible to think of but ,really think of what kind of woman she has been to you nothing good will come out of visiting her. So please don’t count on getting that house and go there because you think you will get it. 

Your siblings, they are entirely her responsibility. You can’t save them either . The person you need to save is your self. 
 

It pains me to say any of this but I think you need to be realistic. When my father died he left over $30,000 to his one SISTER. He left my brother and I a very paltry amount in a life insurance policy. He was very abusive to everyone who ever entered his life . In the end the people who helped him most in the world my mother my brother and I he left us nothing and left everything to his family of origin well his one sister. Yes ,it’s a horrible kick in the face, but it’s reality that abusive parents are not going to grace you when they’re gone. 
 

So let material things go you will always have your dad. And save your sanity like he would have wanted you to. 

Oh I'm not looking to get the house at all. I've no interest in the house or any money. I'm flying to get the mortgage protection sorted so she and my siblings can stay in it. She doesn't have an income, so the insurance needs to cover the mortgage at least partially, as I'm worried as to how they'll pay for the mortgage otherwise. That's the only reason why I'm flying. The mortgage they signed had a protection clause and I'm flying to get it sorted. My brother is living with her at 25, so he should absorb some of the mortgage payments because he's ultimately enjoying the premises. 

She's a co-signer on the house and is the surviving spouse, so of course she gets the house and it's her right to get the house. I've no interest in taking it away from her or have her hand it over to me. None. Truthfully, I've got zero interest in any personal financial gain in this situation. 

She doesn't have a will, but if she did, she'd leave it all to my brother, I'm sure (also based on religious grounds which stipulate that the male child should get the inheritance- LOL). My brother lives with her still and will probably be supporting her, so I've no issues with that. I've got no skin in the game whatsoever. The only thing I want is for my dad's legacy to remain, but I've no interest in who gets it.

I think she wants me to give her attention and her ego is feeding from the attention I'm giving her because I'm the only person in the family who doesn't buy in her BS. She's latching onto me because it feeds her narcissistic ego. That's why she's acting nice now because she's trying to gain sympathy, but I've zero doubt she'll be back to her old ways once enough time has passed. She has real mental health issues and always has, so grief isn't going to improve the situation. 

Edited by RuedeRivoli
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In this digital age, why is it necessary for you to fly there for a week to sort out the mortgage?  Surely this can all be done online or via Zoom meeting, particularly during a dangerous pandemic.

Please don't fly out there to assuage your guilt.  It won't work and it will just result in more upset.

I hope you contacted a professional about your self-harm concerns.

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I think everyone on this thread pointed it right. She is definitely showing signs of her old ways. 

If she cries, I have to listen and provide comfort. If I talk about my grief, she moves on to another topic. I talked about how I sensed my dad was going to pass and her response was: "I'm not going to add you what you just said because I'm trying to avoid fights to preserve you". I literally didn't say anything aside from the fact that I kept thinking of my dad passing days before he passed. Then I said: "I'm strong enough, you don't need to preserve me. I don't know what you mean". She couldn't even be bothered to reassure me and say I'm indeed strong. She once again put me down and her responded: "Perhaps, if this is how you feel about yourself". 

This is exactly what she used to do before. Never paid me a compliment and if I acknowledge my own qualities (such as strength), you can rest assured she'll either negate or ignore. I'm limiting my calls with her to once a week (and she's been told) because every single time, she says something that gets me worked up. I need to learn to get past this, otherwise, I'll lose my mind over every single thing she says. 

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