August 1, 2012

Trying to cope with the borderline mom

Since I came back to my hometown, things had been turbulent. I came with my own opinions, my german-educated way of thinking, strong cognition and cold rationality, which clash with her emotional unstructured mindset.

I'm currently involved in the family business, and most of the times I supported my dad's decisions which are logical and cost effective. My mom was running the business as well and felt that she's the queen boss.. The problem is that she's actually incapable of managing a company as she doesn't have the educational background, the cognitive ability nor does she want to learn about new things. She's been holding back the company's progress as she would make decisions according to her emotions, refusing computerized system because she can't use the computer. The queen felt threatened that I was planning to overthrow her from her throne. She screamed at me not to access our supplier's or customer's files, not to come close to her desk, not to assign anything to our employees without her permission.

These words were often hurled at me, "This is my territory! My prerogative! Don't forget that!" 
"Do you think that you'll own this company if you're helping your dad here? You won't!"
"Why do you have to come back? Just go away! I wish your sister or brother will come back instead!"
"Get out of MY house, you and dad. Just move out!"
"We are only a small company. No need to get too structured. You're too arrogant."
If my dad asked her if she had forwarded any purchase order to the production department, she would snap at him and said if he asked her that again, she would kill him.
She takes everything as a personal attack.

I never thought of wanting to own anything. All I want is to take US to a higher level, to succeed, to help my dad with his dreams.But unfortunately my mom can't see that. She let her own insecurities hold us back.

On the emotional level, it's also exhausting. She's still hypersensitive, reading things that aren't there in the first place.
She screamed at me because I was silent in the car. She cried and screamed out of sudden,"What did I do to you!? Why are you ignoring me?" I was startled.. I was silent because I fell asleep.

I was yawning without closing my mouth, suddenly she screamed that I was ungrateful and disrespectful because she had always taught me to close my mouth and don't I ever think that shows the strength of a character. I was really confused.. How does the strength of my character and yawning correlate? I only kept silent. I had learned that she just wanted to provoke me further until I exploded and then blaming me for being disrespectful towards her, thus justifying her insanity.

My brother was back for his internship a few months ago and had a huge dispute with her as well. Unlike the vocal me, my brother is a very passive and phlegmatic person, in which he would never take sides and never voiced his opinions in front of my mom. So my mom always thought he's her ally.
My mom complained about her friend that she's always so negative, etc. My brother said,"You too." She cried night and day because of my brother's two words and resented me and my dad for influencing my brother. She was sure my brother has that opinion about her because of me. She would never thought that it was my bro's own perception, even though she knows how smart and perceptive he is.. True to the borderline traits, she sees herself as the victimized good guy.
She then started crying and telling my brother stories about my dad, what a jerk he was, how she was always victimized. My brother was so angry that he yelled back at her that he didn't want to take side and that she needed to stop being so black and white and hypersensitive. He then told me that he would never come home after he graduated and what a f-cked up home this was.. He's tired of us, the children, having to constantly parentify our mom. To see his anger made me sad, realizing that it was the first time I saw him being angry, that's he's right and everyone in this house was living a nightmare.

We wanted to visit my brother in Brisbane and I had bought the tickets, booked the hotels and everything. I asked her if she wanted to go to New Zealand, and she told me she had been in New Z a couple of times, so it's up to me. I asked my dad who's never been there if he wanted me to plan a New Zealand trip. He said no. So, I planned only for an Aussie trip. My dad told her this later and she claimed that she didn't know anything and refused to join the trip. When I asked her what should I do with the tickets, she only shrugged her shoulders and told me she didn't need me to plan the trip. What did I do? I kept quiet.. Tired of life time confrontations.

I've tried communicating with her and my dad.. But it's like talking to a wall here. I asked her why she treated me so unfairly.. She kept blaming my dad, that my dad made her unhappy and she only forwarded everything to me. No regrets there, all my dad's faults.. I said calmly that her hypersensitivity was overwhelming, again she blamed my dad, her own parent's upbringing. I gave up...

Ok, I'll stop here.. Writing this is not good for my own health apparently. Now I feel some anger rising.

I am actually contemplating of moving out, but when I told her this, she cried.. And I felt bad. Call me a masochist, but I'm going to try to cope with her and see how long I can last. Who knows, I might be able to stop resenting the fire for burning :)

The question of how I cope? Silence and practicing breathing meditation :D It does help a lot!  
I always remember what my dad said. "If a mad dog bites you, are you going to squat down and bite the dog in retaliation? Doesn't that make you as mad as it is?"
When anger got the best of me, I would force myself to think that nothing lasts forever, this (anger) too shall pass. And after a while, it does indeed go away. 

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