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Thread: Help me help mum to deal with unhealthy relationship

  1. #1
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    Help me help mum to deal with unhealthy relationship

    How do you help your mum to deal with a long-term, controlling unhealthy relationship? Please don't suggest leave him because she won't and she is coping by pretending nothing's happening. I can not change any of the above things. She won't see a therapist either. Don't suggest any of the two things I mentioned, because that won't work yet. I just want to know what I CAN do to help. Thankyou

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
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    NYC
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    14,196
    it kinda gotta come from her imho, if she wants help she'll reach out, and if she doesnt - idk that anyone could convince her to... anyway, a coupla things that helped me while i was in a bad relationship and wasnt ready to reach out for help yet:

    journalling.
    cuz abuse involves lotsa mind games, perception of reality gets distorted, perp presents things differently from how they are, so to maintain my sanity i gotta record my perspective on things, before i lose it. since i wont talk to anyone else about it yet - i gotta at least read my own words, you know? like if he keeps beating up on me and insisting that its my fault, i made him do it, cuz i got a bad attitude or idk what else - if thats the only input i hear, its only a matter of time till i start believing it. while if i keep a journal, and can open it any time and read "today he beat me up cuz i asked him how his day was," "got beat up again cuz i sneezed in the middle of a convo," "again beat up cuz he couldnt find his winter boots" - that gives me a chance to see whats going on. crucial thing imho.

    safe box.
    they offer them in banks, its like $15 a year for a small one. or, if its not an option, then just a small metal box with a lock. i used kids toy safe, got it at toys-r-us. cuz gotta have a place where i can keep some minimal stuff thats mine, that the perp doesnt have access to. its good for practical reasons - like my id, ss card, some cash in case i decide to leave, etc - good if i have a stash like that, that he doesnt know about and has no access to. and its good for emotional reasons too, cuz protecting myself gotta start small, baby steps, start from a small thing, and build up from there. i cant leave an abusive relationship cuz its too big of a step to make at once, to separate my whole life from the perp, to sever all connections with him. hard thing to do. so i start small - all my life is still enmeshed with him, just how it used to be, same old familiar, but i got one tiny thing thats not enmeshed, thats separate, thats my own and not his. idk, some item of sentimental value that i keep in my safe box - its mine, he has no access to it, its free of him, he cant destroy it in a fit of rage, its protected. thats where my self-preservation is gonna grow from. once i started protecting that one tiny thing and get a feel for what its like, to have that one thing free of him - im gonna do more, protect more and more aspects of my life. eventually gonna leave. hope im making sense.

    any activities not involving the perp.
    cuz in order to kick him out of my life (or even just to limit the space hes taking in it) i gotta first fill it with something else. if i got nothing else - he'll be taking 100% of it. idk how enmeshed your mom is, so its hard to give examples of what might work, but stuff like - a family weekend with you, without him. a weekly movie night with just you and mom. spa, museum, concert, shopping, whatever you guys are into. quality time without him. hobbies, reading clubs, knitting groups, rock climbing weekends - anything without him. if thats not possible - maybe just a half an hour coffee together weekly. something that i can expect and look forward to. cuz abuse is terribly unpredictable, so predictability/stability/routines help greatly. if even a half an hour a week isnt possible - idk, a chess game online once he's gone to bed. just something, anything, in my life that i enjoy and that doesnt involve him, that will be there whether i stay or go. cuz leaving an abusive relationship is hard cuz its like leaving my whole life behind and starting from scratch. so it helps if im only leaving half a life behind, and the other half remains as it was, you know. gotta build that other half first.

    for you and your mom
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  3. The following user says thank you to Manya for this useful post:

    weepingwillow (08-27-2016)

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