Friday, February 26, 2010

Cannot believe I am related to these people sometimes...

LOL Okay, so I guess I just have a lot to talk about today! Anyways, on Facebook today, I saw a post from my cousin that reads:

I'm sick of the hobos...always beggin for change..I dont like how I have to work..and they sit around all day and get paid.

I later spoke with my aunt N, said cousin's mother, and she explained that there was a guy that always stood on a certain street. Apparently my cousin knows the guy and knows that practically every store in the area has offered the guy a job to try and help him out but this guy has confessed to my cousin that he makes more begging than he would at a job!

Now obviously, that chaps my behind as I'm sure it does many of yours but that wasn't my issue. That comes in with my aunt K's response to my cousin's original post, which reads:

I happen to agree with you B!! They need to get a job and anyone who gives them change are enablers!!!!!

Honestly? Are you kidding me?? Her response just angered me to no end and here's why. I can't remember where I read it but, a couple years ago, I remember reading somewhere that it's thought (or perhaps it's even been proven by this point) that a large percentage of America's homeless population is comprised of severely mentally ill persons with such diseases as schizophrenia or other severe mental disorders. If that is the case, then it's not nearly as simple as these people "getting a job".

Moving on to the next group, we have those homeless persons who, through no fault of their own, have found themselves out on the streets with nowhere to go. It doesn't take much, especially in this economy. A spouse being let go from a job. A child getting cancer and needing expensive treatments. An employer canceling health insurance coverage for it's employees and dependents. A little "bad luck" can have horrible consequences and stuff like this doesn't only happen to "bad" people, though I'm sure my FOO would argue that point. After all, their favorite saying seems to be, "God helps those that help themselves!" (This is actually quite ironic since most of them seem to think everyone should just HAND them this and that on a silver platter but, I digress for now.)

Our final group is composed of those who, like the guy my cousin knows and initially posted about, are merely lazy and prefer to work the system rather than do anything to help themselves. But how can one tell the difference in every case? How easy is it to tell the difference between the truly disadvantaged and those who are simply cons taking advantage of people?

My line of thinking is this - if it's only a couple bucks or some spare pocket change, does it really matter what that person uses the money for? If they choose to deaden their suffering from a mental disorder with alcohol, who am I to judge? More to the point, what if my withholding that single dollar could have made the difference between that person being able to feed their kid(s) tonight or not?

That's not to say that, if I knew the person was a con artist working the system that I would still hand over my money. I'm not a fool. But as blessed as I am in my life, why not share a little of that with those less fortunate?

Quite frankly, my family's attitudes about certain things makes me sick and ashamed to know them. I cannot believe that I am actually related to these people. Me, who would give the shirt off my own back to help someone in need while they sit there in their houses with all their material possessions piled around them, looking down their noses at everyone else. It's disgusting. BUT, I must say, it DOES make it a lot easier not to care that they've chosen to side with my NM against me. When I read or hear stuff like my aunt K's post today, I think to myself, "Good riddance to bad rubbish!"



Found an absolutely hilarious song for those days when us DoNM's are feeling especially pissed off about our situations. Came across it online while doing a google search a while back.

Be forewarned that the lyrics are VERY explicit and most definitely NOT for children's ears. Or yours if you're the sort that is offended by bad language. That being said, here's the link.

And just in case anyone should want to have the lyrics as well, here ya go.

It's quite a bit heavier than what I normally would listen to but, those times I'm good an angry and really need to vent, I found it works. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did/do!


Had a dream about NM last night...

I wouldn't say it was a good dream exactly, since NM was whining, bitching and complaining the entire time. However, for my part, I was giving back as good as I was getting and it felt AWESOME. I think maybe it was my subconscious' way of giving me a little of the closure I needed.

When NM took her ball and went home the last time we spoke, I felt a bit "robbed" afterward because I never got the chance to really stick it to her and tell her I was done putting up with her shit. I had intended to send a letter to her after that but eventually decided not to as it would only serve to fuel NM's need for N supply as well as give her some concrete evidence of my "badness" to show the rest of the family. Bad enough most of them aren't speaking to me now because they've chosen to buy NM's line of bullshit. I'll be damned if I'm going to help NM's smear campaign against me by giving her proof of my "disrespect" toward her.

Still, the whole thing's left me with a wanting to really let the bitch have it. To give it to her with both barrels and, once and for all, tell her how I've REALLY felt all these years. Since I haven't had that opportunity in real life, I figure this was my mind's way of saying, 'Here ya go.' Every single comment NM made in the dream, I had a wicked comeback for. I wasn't yelling or angry in the dream, just wickedly sarcastic and NM was getting more upset by the minute that her comments weren't having their desired effect on me.

Perhaps at some point in the future, I'll have my chance to get all this out for real but, for now, the dream will do.


Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Miscellaneous ramblings...

Hey all! I know I haven't written in a while and I do apologize. Partly, I've been busy trying to focus on redecorating my house as well as on dh and ds but I've also not really known what to write about. Now that I'm no longer getting any info about NM, things have been rather calm and uneventful.

I've been thinking a little bit about her here and there. Mostly I wonder what she's doing. Is she thinking about me? Is she the N version of "sad"? Is she angry? Is she still working overtime to smear me to the FOO? I guess what I'm wishing for is to find out that she misses me and is hurting now that I've been out of contact again, though I know that's not going to happen. If NM has thought of me at all, it's only with anger and disgust at how I'm being "silly" in my refusal to come crawling back, accept her rules and "make things right" with her.

When I last spoke to my aunt N about NM, I was told that NM was going to be visiting aunt N along with my GM while my aunt recovers from her second foot surgery and then the three of them would be going back to Ohio for my cousin J's wedding in March. I'm not sure why but hearing about this REALLY angered me for some reason. Try as I might, I cannot seem to put a finger on why it upsets me so.

One thing that's been bothering me is trying to figure out how to get some stuff back that NM had borrowed. There is a wicker bassinet that I used for ds when he was little that I'd like back, some of ds' things - books and toys - that NM has at her house and some copper pieces (some of which are quite valuable) that I'd like to have back. When NM and I last spoke, she made reference to the last gift I gave her supposedly being all the copper pieces I lent her. For one, I have given her several gifts since then and, secondly, I didn't GIVE her all the copper pieces. The majority I LENT to her and the rest, some less expensive pieces, I said she could keep. Needless to say, I'm not expecting this to go easily.

The plan right now is to have dh call NM up, give her a list of what we'd like back and then set a time to go pick the stuff up. As much as I'd like everything back, I've already told dh that if NM tries to pull anything, like saying "If DA wants her stuff back, she has to come get it herself!", then forget it. What I'm hoping is that NM will gladly give the stuff back out of spite. Sort of a "If DA doesn't want anything to do with me then FINE, I don't want her crap in my house!" kind of thing. I'll let you all know how it goes.

Since going NC, I find that I rarely think of NM and spend most of my time focusing on redecorating my house or doing stuff with my dh and ds. The times I allow myself to think about her and my past, I think anger is the dominant emotion. Anger and pain. I think about all the things she's done to me, all the things she allowed her pig husband and my bitch ass half sister to say and do to me, the way they all mistreated and abused me and I get very angry. My therapist once said that anger tends to be a cover for pain and I definitely feel there is truth to that statement because, if I dig deeper, beyond the anger, I usually find pain. Despite the amount of pain, I find it hard to cry most times. Rather, I can start crying but it usually is over quickly and, regardless of the fact that I might still feel pain and/or sadness, I am unable to cry anymore. I wonder if anyone else has experienced this? I've always assumed it is a result of years of having to repress what I was thinking or feeling in order to survive in that environment. Hmmm...

I wonder if I'll ever hear from NM again? I'd have expected her to have tried to contact me by now as she's always been more the engulfing sort of NM and I didn't expect her to let me go without a fight. Even dh says he'd have expected to hear something from her by now. Perhaps my aunt N hasn't dropped the bomb yet that I have gone NC and won't be coming back this time? Not sure how I feel about NM's reaction thus far. In one respect I feel like I should be relieved. I mean, how many of us DoNM's go NC thinking we'll finally have some peace only to find ourselves psychotically pursued by our NM's? And yet....there is a part of me that feels a bit stung to realize NM really doesn't care at all, since that is how I'm taking her non-response to this point. Is she really going to just let me walk away forever and not do anything to try and get me back? That is a bit of a tough pill to swallow. Even if she only wanted me as her chew toy at least she wanted me. But this...what do I do with THIS?? To realize that one's own mother cares so little about's just heartbreaking.

Sorry this post is so all over the place. That's pretty much how I've been feeling these past couple weeks though - a little bit of everything rolled into one.

Hugs all,

DA xx

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Well, I finally did it...

I killed the "information train". Yesterday, to be specific.

It all started yesterday morning with an email from my aunt N. Most of the email was about general stuff - the weather, my ds and aunt N's upcoming foot surgery in a couple weeks - but there was also some information in there about my NM. That part of the email reads:

DA, I think that you're just gonna have to be patient with this whole situation. I have shared lots of things with uncle C and he is mature enough to make his own decisions. I will have a face to face with him also - I won't let him believe it all. If and when I get a chance, I will also tell NM to shut up and keep her poison to herself. I will make her understand that the bible passage that she claims to love so much is something that she should aspire to and follow to the T. If she would read every word of that passage, she would realize just how wrong she is when she spews her old garbage. There are many things I could say about my own children. they also made mistakes in their teens, (some things I'm just learning about too, lol) but those are private family things that need to be left behind. None of anyone's business-period. Once a person grows up, it should be left behind. We all develop over years and learn how to make better judgement decisions. It's a normal way of life and any parent should understand that and defend their child past that point in their lives. For some reason, your mom can't do that. She's been hurt in the whole situation, and she lashes out to people like me or Gram B. The 2 people with whom you have alliances with. Gram is on the fence. She feels that NM is hurting and she wants to defend her, but I calmly remind her of what is right and what is wrong. I also feel bad for NM - I hate to see anyone hurting, but I look at the entire picture and realize that NM has it within her power to make things better IF she would only deal with the issues at hand in a mature manner and accept that she has old baggage that is getting in the way of you both healing and getting on with your lives. It's basically been her choice to not come over and pursue a relationship with her grandson. I've said it before and I'll say it again. NOTHING will ever come between me and my children, or between me and my grandchildren. NM feels that she is a victim in all of this, and I've gently told her that she is not the victim, but she doesn't get it. The way she tells it is that you and your dh ganged up on her and she could hardly get a word in. Gram B believes that, and thinks it was "horrible" that you shang haied her in that manner.

I think that you have to decide what you want in all of this. If you want to have a relationship with your mom of any sort, then find a way to do that. (I could tell her that you're waiting to hear from her or something like that [if you wanted]) I honestly think that NM thinks you DON'T want to hear from her again, so she's respecting that and staying silent. (I think) As for the rest of the family, reach out a little bit and you might be surprised. Uncle C is an open book. He's very easy and you'll basically get back from him very similar to what you get from me, so beware, lol. Aunt S has had major problems in her life with M (ds) and F (dh). M can be quite an asshole-just the things he writes on FB can tell you that. However, Aunt S tells Gram that she isn't interested with hearing anything that goes on between you and your NM bc she has all she can handle with her own life. She made a mess with M - at one point I thought she had it all together, but she took F's side and alas.....F can be very abusive with his words AND he also got abusive with his hands at times. (the truth finally came out, but F used to abuse M, and F was also abused as a child and refused to go to counselling about the whole mess so aunt S took F's side) Gram B would take your NM's side if she had to choose only because she cannot fathom that your NM wasn't a perfect mother. I keep on pointing out things to her though, so she really tries to keep an open mind but it's hard for her. Your NM was her sickly child and she still treats NM as such.

At any rate, I do know most of the truth and I will be happy to share it with others. I am not out to hurt your NM in any way, but I refuse to ignore what the real problems are. NM knows how I feel and she's respectful of it. However, Gram B tried to make me feel guilty a while back because she thought that NM felt abandoned. I wrote her back and told her that I was sorry if NM felt that way, but I'm still here for her (NM), AS I AM FOR DISTURBED ANGEL. I simply refuse to be bullied into decisions that are not mine. I make my own decisions based on the information and gut feelings that I have received. I'm honest and tell NM the same thing. Gram sometimes doesn't like it, but tough s**t. Not her choice.

Regarding whatever bible passage NM is supposedly always quoting, I have no idea what passage that would be. The only religious thing my NM ever said to me was, "God helps those that help themselves" and that isn't even IN the Bible. If I had to venture a guess, I'd say it's either something about honoring one's mother or doing unto others. In either case, NM needs to take a good, long look in a mirror before she goes pointing fingers at anyone.

Moving on, the issue of me "acting out" as a teen. I have a few thoughts on this:

a) What teen DOESN'T act out? It's a natural, normal part of growing up at that time. It's how people, hopefully, learn to become individuals and think for themselves. Of course, NM and SJ did everything they could to squash any individuality or independent thinking on my part.

b) Despite some normal acting out, compared to most all of my friends and peers at that time, I was a freaking SAINT. I didn't drink. I didn't do drugs. I wasn't sneaking out all the time. (Well, okay, I snuck out ONE TIME and on another occasion, skipped ONE class once but on both occasions I felt so guilty about it that I actually confessed. How's that for "bad"?)

c) The bulk of my "acting out" involved cutting my arms with anything sharp I could get my hands on. At the time, it was a means of releasing some of the pressure inside that would build up. By cutting myself, I relieved some of the pain and pressure built up inside so that it became more manageable again. When my NM discovered what I'd been doing, her response was, "Why would you do that? Don't you know how EMBARRASSING this will be for me if anyone finds out?" But as for the horrible thing that must have led me to do something like that, she couldn't have cared less.

d) Bottom line - I was a GOOD kid. I did my chores, I made good grades and tried my best to be invisible so as not to draw any more abuse and unwanted attention than I was already getting. Yet, to hear NM tell it, I was a HORRIBLE, highly troubled child who gave her nothing but problems. To this day I can do nothing right and she hasn't a kind word to say about me. And such is my experience as the family scapegoat.

Regarding dh and I supposedly "ganging up" on my NM, dh and I knew this one was coming. Of course it's a complete and total LIE on NM's part. If you all knew my dh and I, you'd know that my dh is the sort of person who rarely, if ever gets upset. Rather, he gets upset but almost never raises his voice or shows much agitation. It's actually rather infuriating at times, being his wife, when we disagree. I'm all upset and there sits dh, perfectly calm and collected. LOL

Firstly, NM apparently claims that she was lured to my house, by me, under false pretenses that I wanted to talk. Seeing as how we DID talk, I don't see how that constitutes "false pretenses". Secondly, NM claims that she couldn't get a word in edgewise. This part is total projection as the reality was that it was DH AND I who could barely get a word in as NM was so busy yelling and defending herself and SJ and my NHS. The second dh or I DID start to speak, NM immediately went back to her defending and talked over us.

The entire conversation, which lasted roughly 40 minutes, was spent with NM saying over and over that she wants her grandson, my ds, to know here and feels she's not being given that opportunity because my MIL is "always here" and NM "never has a chance to be with ds just the two of us." When dh said that he'd talk to his mother and make it so that NM could come by whenever she liked without MIL being here, suddenly NM said to dh, "B...quite frankly, I don't WANT to come here to see him! I want to be able to take him to MY HOUSE, BY MYSELF, without DA there and I don't understand why I shouldn't be able to do that!" It was at this point that dh said rather sharply (but still in that irritatingly calm tone), "Quite frankly NM, because I don't trust that the same psychological damage that was done to DA won't be done to my son." OF COURSE NM jumped on that one and immediately set to defending herself yet again by saying, "I am NOT responsible for DA's psychological damage!"

NM admitted to guilt only ONCE the entire time. Her crime? Allowing me to mistreat and disrespect her! Beyond that, she is a martyr and a saint of a mother, though she hasn't ever come out and said so in those exact words. But the way she talks about herself and all she's supposedly done and sacrificed for me, that's what she's getting at. And I am her disappointment of a daughter who has betrayed her sacrifice by disrespecting her. I'd laugh at the absurdity if it wasn't so painfully sad.

Upon getting this email from my aunt N, I was very upset. The more I've heard, the clearer it is to me that:

a) NM has been busy with her smear campaign against me, trying to win the loyalty of the extended FOO and..

b) (And I base this also on the attitudes of extended FOO recently) that pretty much everyone except aunt N has decided to believe and side with NM.

It is the second part that HURT. BAD. I spent the better part of yesterday and last night feeling gut punched and sick to my stomach. Despite not wanting to and feeling very nervous for some reason about doing so, I finally killed the information train and told my aunt N I didn't want to hear anything more about NM. No more about what she is saying or doing, where she's vacationing next, what she and SJ have been up to...NOTHING. I added that I also didn't want to hear about NHS, BIL or their kids either as I felt all of them, NM and SJ included, had made it pretty clear through their choices and actions that they no longer consider me a part of their "family" and so I was cutting that final tie to all of them.

Aunt N's response was to say that she read and would respect my request and would only let me know in cases of serious illness or death. I emailed her back and said I didn't even want to know that. After all, what would be the point? Let's say NM wound up in the hospital, very ill. It's not as if I could go to visit her. I can just imagine SJ and NHS waiting there, hoping I'd show up so they could get at me. I can hear them now - "Are you happy, bitch? YOU did this to her, you know. YOU are KILLING HER with you ridiculous behavior and silent treatments. Are you happy now??" And what I'd get from NM wouldn't be much better, I'm sure. Bottom line, nothing positive would come from such knowledge. It would serve only for them to have one more chance to hurt and abuse me and I say, no thanks.

Since sending that response to aunt N, I haven't heard back from her yet. I'm not sure what to expect. On one hand, she seems to get where I'm coming from with my NM and yet, not having lived in such a toxic relationship, it's hard for anyone who hasn't been there to truly get it. Because of that, I fear a negative response from her along the lines of, "Are you kidding me?! If your NM were lying in a hospital, DYING, you wouldn't want to know??!! That's just immature of you. She's your MOTHER for crying out loud! I know she's been abusive and all but to not even want to know that she was sick or dying, that's just too much." Guess we'll have to wait to find out for sure.

In addition to stopping any info through my aunt N, I've also blocked NM on email and Facebook. Blocking NM's email address was something I'd been withholding doing despite being NC, though I'm not sure why. But, as of last night, it's done and I no longer have to worry about any nasty emails coming my way. At least not unless NM gets a new email addy or sends it through someone else's account.

I also got rid of some stuff in my house that was NM's. It was one item in particular - some tea bags - that gave me intense anxiety after getting rid of them. Tea to NM is like crack cocaine to a user. NM HAS to have her tea multiple times a day and used to have a stash of tea bags here for when she'd find the time to grace us with her presence. Once, shortly after dh's employer had cut health insurance coverage for me and ds, NM and I were shopping in the local grocery store. As we were checking out, NM tossed her box of teabags in with my stuff. I said to her, "Those aren't mine" and she said, "I know. They're for your house for when I come." I put the box back in with her stuff and said, "I'm not paying for those. I can't afford it." NM said, "They're for your house" and I again told her, "I can't afford it." "They're only, like, TWO BUCKS!", said NM. I calmly responded, "I don't care. I'm on a very tight budget right now and can't spare the extra cash, especially when dh and I don't drink tea!" Well NM threw a holy FIT right there in the store and made a HUGE deal out of it, even badmouthing me to the cashier. I didn't really care as I had gotten out of paying for the damn things but this complaint about the stupid tea bags went on for WEEKS. NM even brought it up in a therapy session she went to with me months later. So my throwing out her blessed tea bags was a HUGE deal. At first I started to panic but then I remembered that little scene in the store and suddenly, I didn't give a shit.

Now all that's left are two toys NM gave ds for Xmas which I plan to send to my IL's house so that ds can still have and play with them but they won't be in my house and that damned couch that my NM gave me that is currently in my sunroom. Dh and I have plans to get a new sofa set for the living room once we get our taxes back and I cannot WAIT to get NM's damned sofa with all it's bad "ju ju" the hell out of my house!

I've felt much better today than yesterday, but I'm still feeling quite sad. I think it's because, when I first started this period of NC, it was sort of a "for now" thing. I thought that maybe, in the future, once I'd healed a bit and was stronger, NM and I could reconnect and I'd be better able to deal with her having reached indifference toward her. But to know that she's been working so hard to turn my own family against me when, as far as she knows, they are my ONLY source of support aside from my dh, I don't think I could ever have her back in my life after that. How does one get past something like that? Someone deliberately trying to turn your own family against you, in the name of "winning", and especially when that person is your own MOTHER who claims to love and miss you so much and only want a relationship with you? I could never, ever trust her again, not that I ever really could but, you know what I mean. So I think it just finally hit me yesterday that the last time I saw my mom 3 to 4 weeks ago REALLY was the last time I may see her. And that just makes my heart ache...


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

NM has started contacting me again...

This past week, I've received three emails from NM. Nothing major. Just some silly little emails forwards that are making their way through the FOO's inboxes. It's more the meaning behind the sent emails I suppose. Her second bout of rage being spent, NM is now ready to "make nice" again and is sending the emails as her way of re-establishing contact.

Now, I'm sure the response of many of you will be, "Well then why don't you just block her emails from coming to your inbox?". Well, the answer to that is I just don't feel like taking that step just yet. Why? I don't know. I've thought about it and have thus far been able to come up with a reason really. Maybe I'm addicted to the drama and am hoping for another doozy. Maybe I'm hoping it'll be an email that is NM's dysfunctional way of "reaching out" so that I can tell her to take a freaking hike. I don't know. I just know that each time I've taken the steps to do so, just before I hit "Save Changes" in my mail setup, I chicken out and don't follow through.

(Though perhaps "chicken out" isn't the right phrase since I'm not afraid to block her, I just don't feel like I really WANT to yet for whatever reason.)

I've also been thinking about how good I've been feeling these past few weeks. In MY mind, I am now NC with my NM. The thing is, I haven't told HER that and I can't help but wonder if that's part of the reason I have been able to feel so good lately. Maybe it's the fact that I have an "out" if things get too tough that has enabled me to take this situation so well. Of course it could also be because I had pretty much accepted over a year ago that NC was where my relationship with NM was headed and have done my grieving already, but I do wonder if having that "out" - despite my intentions never to use it - have changed how I would otherwise feel having finally made my decision to go NC.

I have read and heard the stories of many other DoNM's who went through this huge period of sadness, anger, despair, guilt, etc. after going NC and I guess I wonder why I haven't really felt any of that? There have been small periods of sadness but they've been quite minor and rare. I feel like I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop, so to speak, and expecting the bottom to fall out and find myself falling headfirst into a pool of overwhelming sadness and despair. As if I've been fooling myself all this time and it's all going to catch up to me. About the only thing I DO feel confident about is that - N or not - my NM is toxic and abusive (albeit in her own rather subtle way) and I cannot continue being in a relationship with someone who actively sets out at every interaction to hurt me.

In the past, the pattern has been that NM and I get along, meaning that she is her usual abusive self and I let stuff slide and keep quiet until I, having had enough, blow up and tell her I've had enough. Then she gets angry, sends me a nasty email or blasts me over the phone and then I withdraw in pain and she sets out calling the extended FOO (as well as complaining to NHS and SJ and anyone else who will listen, including the lady behind the pharmacy counter at Walmart) smearing my name to all of them. Finally, her rage spent - and this can take anywhere from a couple days to a week or more - NM starts sending me little email forwards or, more often, she'll just call me up like everything is right with the world and the pattern starts again.

The repercussions of this pattern is that I am not only left feeling like I've been run over by a Mack truck and left for dead but I'm also left feeling very hurt which translates into anger which, unable to be turned back on the one who caused it - my mother - flows over into my relationships with my dh and ds who get a bitchy, pissy, impatient woman as a wife and mother. That is the worst of it but then I also have to deal with the fact that I pretty much have NO extended family - save my dad, SM and aunt N from my NM's side of the family - who I can talk to or count on since they've all been turned against me by years of stories from NM about what a "bad", "troubled", "problematic" child I am. If I had a nickel for every time I've heard NM say to me what a "problem child" I was (and still am) for her, I'd be quite rich indeed.

Having done all I know to do at this point - sending letters, emails, talking on the phone, sitting down and having face to face conversations with NM and even taking her into therapy sessions with me (on MY dime to boot!) - I have run out of options insofar as what I can do to try and make things better between she and I. SO....I can either continue playing NM's stupid, dysfunctional games and keep engaging her in the old pattern OR I can choose to walk away and I have chosen, at this point, to walk away. Seems so simple, doesn't it? To choose to be free and walk away from the craziness versus staying in the dysfunction? If only it WERE so simple.

Maybe if my NM were like the other horrid NM's I hear described on my discussion boards it would be easier to walk away and never look back. I've heard women talk of NM's who starved them, beat them, neglected them and abused them in every way known to mankind and then some. And then I have my NM who took the time to ensure I was fed and clothed. She showed me how to style my hair, wear makeup and taught me about feminine hygiene. She allowed me to have friends over the house and bought us toys like Barbies and stuff. She sat up with me when, after visiting my father, I'd be upset and crying because I missed him terribly. She sat and comforted me when I had my first real broken heart and defended me when the boy kept returning into my life to re-open the wounds. She went to court battle after court battle to protect me from my father and SM who, back in the day, were not so nice. She sat up and rubbed my legs when they woke me up with horrible growing pains when I was little. She bandaged my knees when I fell off my bike. She went to my dance recitals and programs when I was in grade school and was there for my graduation ceremony. And, as I got older, we'd go antique shopping and have a wonderful time together, laughing and shopping.

When you put it all out there like that, she doesn't sound so bad, does she? She certainly doesn't sound like a narcissist. And yet, this is the same woman who, when I was about 6 or 7 years of age, handed me a steak knife and told me to stab her for "betraying her" to my father when I, unknowingly, outed her in a lie she'd told him. This is the same woman who, after a month of not speaking to me, told me having a relationship with me was "more trouble than it was worth" and then, when I began to cry, chastised me saying, "Why are you crying? I haven't said anything mean or nasty to you!" This is the same woman who ALWAYS has a critical or nasty comment to say to me about me or my house or my hair or whatever. This is the same woman who has chosen to support my NHS and SJ, knowing FULL WELL that they mistreat, disrespect and ABUSE me. This is the same woman who purposely left me out and let me know I was not invited nor was I welcome to last year's Thanksgiving festivities lest I upset my poor NHS and BIL's feelings yet then had the gall to turn around and claim she not only HAD invited me but said I told HER that I HAD OTHER PLANS!! Her actions and behaviors are so subtle most times that, to a casual observer, they are innocent or, at the very least, misunderstandings on my part. But to me, the target of her actions and nasty comments, they are abuses, to be sure.

The hardest thing has been seeing her treat my ds in much the same way she treats me. Since dh is my son and I am the family scapegoat, the unfavored one, ds gets less too. Less time, less gifts, less money spent on him, less attention than NHS' - the GC's - kids. Of course, THIS is my fault too because I am unwilling to just hand my ds over into NM's care. Doesn't matter that she has chosen to repeatedly disrespect and gone out of her way to violate any rules or boundaries dh and I have set on how we choose to raise our son and THAT is why we do not trust her, in her mind, she is my MOTHER and for that reason alone, she is to be trusted 110%!

I know what I must do (stick with my decision to go NC) but that doesn't make it easy or simple. But then, those of us who've lived it know that the choice to cut ties with one's own mother is NEVER easy or simple, is it? Always it is a last resort after we've done all we know to do and then some and, even then, it's done reluctantly.

Now that I've gotten a few "feeler" emails from NM, I'm fully expecting to hear from her soon, be it via email or by phone. Despite my aunt N's telling her to give me my space, as an N, NM is not likely to do that as evidenced by her recent attempts at reconnecting with me. I pray that I have the strength and courage to follow through on my decision when the time comes.