Monday, June 27, 2011

Thoughts of contacting NM...

I keep going back and forth on this but I keep coming back to feeling a desire to contact NM again. To be clear, I am NOT thinking of completely undoing all of NC but having more extreme LC. Basically, I've been considering having a strictly email/letter relationship for now and see how things go. I feel I'm at a place where I could handle that much and maintain my individuality as well as enforce my boundaries with her. The thing is, every time I get to where I think I've decided I'm going to do it, I can't help but remember all the things NM has done to me over the years, most specifically since going NC with her. The lies, the smear campaigns, trying to turn my own family against me - and succeeding on that front to a good measure - telling people how I'M a liar, a thief and how she believes I have mental problems and, thus, should be avoided by everyone. At that point, I just can't bring myself to go through with it which, while probably a good thing, just makes me so sad inside and makes me feel frustrated at the hopelessness of the situation.

This isn't some friend we're talking about here, it's my mother and, damn it, I ought to be able to have a positive relationship with the woman. I ought to be able to call her up and tell her how ds is doing in school, how his teachers all say it looks like he may be advanced. I ought to be able to share my newly decorated house with her and be able to hear her say how much she likes it and/or how nice a job I've done with the place. I ought to be able to count on her for support when I find out my SIL is very sick in the hospital and may not make it. All these things and more so many others have with their mothers and take for granted and here I sit, willing to give just about anything for just a single day like that with my own mom. It's so damned unfair.

I sit here and I think to myself, "Is this really it? Was January the 9th of 2010 really the last time I'll ever see or speak to my mother? Will I ever get to hear her voice or hug her again? Or will the next time I see her be her obituary picture in the local newspaper?" Honestly, the thought of never again seeing her or speaking to her, of never going "antiquing" together or hugging her again is almost too much to bear. Despite everything - despite the smear campaigns, the lies, the abuse, not being there for me, etc. - despite it all, I still love her dearly. She may be sick, she may be unable to be the kind of person I so long for her to be in my life but, despite it all, she's still my mother. The woman who carried me in her womb, who gave birth to me, who - at one time - I believe did love me the way a mother should, who fought my NF time and again to protect me from his and NSM's horrible influence, the woman who I used to have occasional good times with.....the woman I literally ache inside, I miss her so much.

I've spoken to my therapist about this whole thing, my feelings about wanting to contact NM but not being sure I can ever go back and she seems to think that the time will come, after I've healed a bit more, when she thinks I will be able to handle having NM back in my life again. It's a lovely thought and one I hold on to.....and yet, again that whisper in the back of my head that lists over and over all the hurtful things she's said and done.



  1. Personally, I think you'll know when you're ready. Thinking about it is a first step. More healing needs to be done, and healthier boundaries created and practiced maintaining. Maybe a reset of the parameters of your relationship would help. You both like antiquing. A starting point. You also recognize that you ought to have many other things but don't. So find someone with whom you do have those things. I have a couple of dear friends with whom I'm able to share those wonderful things. I notice that the more I develop my healthy relationships, the less resentment I feel towards NM. It isn't easy learning to trust yourself to protect yourself.

  2. My deepest sympathy or maybe more accurately empathy. I am in a situation that I have confirmed that my mother's behavior will not improve. If anything she will get worse. Yet, I do not want to go no contact. Your decision to get in touch again will be a difficult one. There is sadness either way. I think one of the hardest things about dealing with a narcissistic is it is painful no matter which way you choose. I am staying with low contact. Talking to your DH and therapist are great ideas. They can help you sort out how you feel and perhaps how to minimize risks. One of the things I appreciate about my counselor is he is teaching me healthier ways to interact in spite of my NM's behavior.

  3. new reader here.

    I can really feel your pain reading this. I think we all long for a Mother's love and let's face it, nobody is "all bad." I mirror so much of what you "desire" but I don't think it's possible with NM. I do, however, think you can have some type of relationship at some point. Unfortunately, you will not be able to tell her the truth b/c she is not able/capable of understanding you. You are complex and your emotional life is rich. If she is a Narcissist, this triggers a lot of uncomfortable feelings for her and she will lash out at you in order to relieve her own anxiety.

    I am presently NC for a few months and I don't know yet how I will open the door. My background is similar to yours. I do know that I will need to refrain from disclosing ANYTHING PERSONAL whatsoever. You simply cannot allow yourself to get sucked back in. I am grieving this b/c my denial was so intense that for most of my adult life, I considered my Mother my best friend (the stockholm type of relationship). I miss the good parts of her and feel badly that I confronted her in such a threatening manner. Ironically, getting angry has been the most "cathartic" part of my recovery but like you, I GRIEVE. It hurts a lot.

  4. i don't think it'll work. i am not sure what your therapist is saying. saying that you will be ready to have her back in your life is like saying you will be ready to be abused again. (it's the language. you're just 'not strong enough' now to 'handle' this 'relationship'. correction: you are being strong now. and that is no relationship.) the thing is, what do you think you are going to get from the contact? you aren't going to get anything.
    i think it's a good thing that all the things she did comes to the forefront. that's what she did. that's the biggest thing about her.
    why do you want her back in your life? for the relief of the chance. but she's already proven there is no chance.
    personally..i mean.. i know what you mean. i miss my mom. but i also don't miss her. i also feel repulsed by her. i DONT want to hear her voice again, the one i thought i loved. like chesire said, stockholm. the voice that to me symbolized the CHANCE at love. but not actual love.
    thats the only reason i liked it. all the other reasons, i hated it. her voice. whining, needy, whining whining whining, criticizing, blaming, pity-partying. oh my. i mean, oh god. the voice makes my stomach go all jiggly and soft. so blind and draining and hurtful, her voice.
    i never want to hug her again. i never wanted to hug her.
    i WOULD LIKE to hug her and have that be accepted and great.
    but i cant give her my love. loving her is killing me.
    don't hang around for you mom. i know those kinds of thoughts make you sick, the one about the obituaries. the ones about funerals. don't think about it. her life isn't in your hands. you have your own business to think about.
    that is so much more satisfying and greater.
    your mom is an ugly memory that never had anything to do with you. you were never meant to love her. so true.

  5. I am very sorry for your pain and heartache.

    My two cents is to be aware of what it is that you are expecting when you let her back in your life. Know that a narcissist does not have the capacity to really be the healthy, loving, caring, gentle mother that we all want. Yes, you deserve that, but we don't all get what we deserve, sadly enough.

    I've been NC with my mother since April 2011, just a short while ago. I miss her sometimes, but it's like I miss that one time we had fun, those handful of times that were awesome and wonderful, but in the light of the other 39 years-worth of times that sucked, it's not enough to bring me back.

    Take it day by day. My therapist recommended not making a huge statement or decision like "I'm never talking to her again!" but to think about my getting healthy, getting back to who I really am ... Enjoy this narcissism-free time to be who you are, build yourself up, enjoy the silence from not having a drama queen around, delight in the things that the drama queen might have belittled or mocked. It should be your time now to do what is best for you. Guard this time.

    Like you, I don't know when/if I will see her again. The thought of "never" is too huge for my brain to understand. But then the thought of being with her now makes me feel horrible. So, only you can decide what works best for you.

    Be healthy and patient with yourself .... Pamper yourself in ways that your mother will never be able to do. Or be the mom that you want.

    Take care of yourself, hon.

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  7. Is it possible you don't miss your mother, you miss the idea of a mother? A good mother, who would be kind to you and love you unconditionally? It seems sort of like you're clinging onto an abusive relationship because that's all you've got.

    It sounds like you really enjoyed hugs from her, and antiquing with her. What you need to ask yourself is: are the times I spent out with her antiquing worth the abuse and pain she caused me? Are the hugs worth the belittling and other demeaning things she did to me? Start putting the good times in context.

    Also, there are many "should" statements ("ought to") in your reasoning; perhaps you can discuss with your therapist. Should statements are about punishing yourself and making yourself feel inferior (which you are not).

    Also: you're overwhelming yourself by amping up the stakes by thinking about never seeing her again. Just take it day by day and let the future take care of itself. It seems to me your thinking about never seeing her again is a tactic to get you to contact her again.

    It's OK to miss people. It's human, and it's expected.

  8. did you ever contact her again?