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I feel hopeless

(23 Posts)
Lucyloo12 Mon 05-Sep-22 19:24:05

I haven't written on here for over a year but recently feel really low. My relationship with my youngest daughter and grandchildren is non existent and my relationship with my other daughter is hanging by a thread since she went for a holiday with her sister. The youngest is very articulate and could sell her granny, pardon the expression. Since my husband died 16 years ago she has tried to control my life, hates any relationship I develop, has manipulated my every move. When I say enough she stops contact... has done it for years... but worse the GC hate me because of what she makes up about me. I have begged for anything from them, which she thoroughly enjoys. I can't take anymore. I live alone, work full time and live like a recluse..... its still not good enough. I really don't know what to do with my life. Its all so pointless.

Smileless2012 Mon 05-Sep-22 20:45:52

Oh Lucyloo I'm so very sorry that things haven't got any better for you and from your post, appear to be getting worse.

Please stop living like a recluse and make a life for yourself because your D is still manipulating and controlling you, and she'll continue to do so for as long as you let her.

You know she's doing this and the only person who can put a stop to it is you. Don't allow her to ruin your life. Live the best life that you can and don't let her know what you're doing. It's none of her business. If she doesn't want you to be a part of her's and her children's lives, then don't allow her into yours or to know anything about it.

There's nothing you can about someone who lies about you or about those who believe those lies and that includes your GC and her sister. Your life isn't pointless and neither are you.

The only way you'll ever win this game is to stop playing so tell her you've had enough and you wont tolerate this any more flowers.

Hithere Mon 05-Sep-22 21:39:33

I hope you didn't move.

You have been in this situation for years now.

What can you do to change the situation?
Join activities, hobbies, etc?

Please look for help if you have suicidal thoughts- your last two sentences are concerning

crazyH Mon 05-Sep-22 21:58:00

I have great admiration and affection for Smileless and Hithere who seem to remember everyone. Unfortunately, my memory is hopeless and I don’t remember your story Lucyloo . But I am so sorry you are going through this. I have also had difficulties with 2 of my children. It’s not perfect now, but manageable. I am divorced, and have the added problem of having my Ex and his wife living in the same town, which means my children have regular contact with them. It’s hard.
Please take the advice of our wise friends here. Wish you all the best and hope you feel better flowers

Whiff Mon 05-Sep-22 22:59:01

Lucyloo nothing you do is pointless. When I am in deeps of despair I talk out loud to my husband. He died 18.5 years ago . Do you talk to your husband? It's not mad but I promise you it helps. I have shouted and swore at my husband and blamed him for leaving me . I have screamed at him our son wouldn't have dumped me if he had lived. Sounds wicked I know but it helps me cope.

Our adult children can only hurt us if we allow it. My son and daughter in law have hurt me enough by their words and actions. I will not allow them to hurt me anymore. Doesn't mean I don't still love my son and miss my 3 grandson's all the time. Their youngest I have never met or know his name.

You are a mom don't let your children hurt you . Take your power back and say enough. You still have a lot of living to do. What you do with your life is up to you before I moved house 3 years ago I existed but since moving I live my life to the full .

My husband made me promise to live the best life I can and I do. I don't know you but I am sure your husband would say the same thing.

What our adult children do is what the Americans call eldest abuse. I didn't understand what they mean until my son decided he no longer wanted me for his mom.

What your daughters are doing and telling lies about you to their children is despicable.

You have to put yourself first your wants and needs . I don't know all your story but I think you need to stop trying to make something thing work that is beyond repair .

Time to distance yourself from your family. DerbyshireLass has various terms for doing that on the support to thread .

Like I say I don't know you or your story hope I haven't spoken out of turn and made you feel worse . But you must be a strong woman to have coped without the love,support and comfort of your husband all these years . ?

Lucyloo12 Mon 05-Sep-22 23:40:16

I'm amazed anyone remembers my posts. I never did move in the end, my gut feeling was that if she cut me off again in a new place I would be really isolated in a place I didn't know. I stayed here and carried on working. I've rarely talked to my late husband Whiff, maybe I should. Pretty sure he wouldn't be impressed. What made you move Whiff? I feel I've reached rock bottom and need to do something but can't think what, whatever I do is wrong so do nothing which isn't helping how I feel. My colleagues think I'm strong .... I'm not and just act as though I am!

DerbyshireLass Tue 06-Sep-22 00:59:48

Hello Lucy, so sorry to read your story. ?.

I agree with Smiles this is a game you can't win, at least not in the short term. You may prevail in the long run but you would need to play the long game.

Your daughter has made it plain she doesn't want you in her life right now. Fair enough, so just let her go. However, she needs to learn that she has no authority to tell you how you should live, what you should do, who you should see. That is totally unacceptable.

It's time to take back control and reclaim your power. And whatever you do, don't beg because all you are doing is playing right into her hands. She is using emotional blackmail to control and manipulate you.

You say that when you say enough, she stops contact. Well let her, in fact I would go so far as to say that I think you should make a pre-emotive strike. Next time she starts, tell her that her behaviour is unacceptable, you will not tolerate it, you will not be bullied and you will not succumb to emotional blackmail. Tell her she has crossed a line. Then just leave it there, you don't need to say anything else. No drama, no tears, and definitely no pleading or grovelling.

You need to stand tall and proud and hang onto your dignity, no matter how wretched you feel inside. You cannot win by repeatedly caving in to her demands. They will only become more and more outrageous. You need to draw a line now and she needs to know that you mean what you say.

You might think it's cutting off your nose to spite your face but realistically would total estrangement be any worse than the current torment you are having to endure. She is deliberately torturing you and seemingly enjoying every minute of it.

You are not have survived widowhood (I speak as a fellow widow). If you can survive that then you can cope with anything.

Your daughter plainly has issues but you cannot keep on making allowances and excuses when she treats you with such cruelty and contempt. You cannot help her but you can and you must help yourself. Don't let her break your spirit.

I'm not sure whether counselling would help but it's time you started the healing process. Self care, diet, exercise, getting outside in the fresh air, even if it's just a walk in the park, or a mooch round the shops and a cup of coffee somewhere.

You say living like a recluse still isn't good enough for your daughter, well it certainly isn't good enough for you. 16 years is quite long enough to live a solitary life. You are entitled to live, to have friends, to go on holiday, to have a few simple pleasures and live with joy and peace.

Being a widow is no picnic but it's not the end of life, joy and laughter. Your daughter has no right to expect you to exist in a twilight world of loneliness and isolation. She has no right to control and manipulate you. You have every right to breathe, laugh, dance, sing and yes ......even fall in love again if you are lucky enough to do so. You have the right to have friends and a social life. I cannot begin to tell you how angry I am with your selfish cruel daughter.

Lucy please don't give up, dig deep and find your courage to live again. Let your daughter rant and rave. When she does just tell her, quietly but firmly, to back off because you are no longer going to put up with her silly mind games and nonsense.

I have had some issues with my son (mainly because of his wife, my DIL). I allowed my DIL to treat me like a doormat. Three times she threatened to cut me off, three times I called her bluff and said go ahead and three times she has backed down. That was over a year ago and she hasn't tried it since. I told her I won't be bullied and Emotional blackmail won't wash with me. She still plays silly games but I can see right through her tactics so I ignore them,

Whiff has mentioned that I have come up with some terms I use to describe my tactics. One is called the Red Velvet Rope Policy. This means I only allow my most trusted and cherished people to get really close to me. DIL isn't one of them, I keep her at arms length. I am always friendly, pleasant and polite but I don't trust her so I never divulge anything which she could use to hurt me or use against me, I never say anything which could be misinterpreted or twisted. It means that conversations are always light and if I'm honest a bit bland and superficial but it works.

I suggest that next time your daughter kicks off you call her bluff, you have nothing to lose. She has already poisoned the grandchildren against you. What else can she do, she has no further hold on you. She has played her aces, she has nothing left.

You don't say how old the grand children are. One day they will be old enough to make up their own minds. One day they will see through her. She will overplay her hand and they will see her true colours.

You can't reason with people like your daughter and my DIL. The best way to handle them is leave them to it. Be polite and friendly and try and keep the door open but if they slam it shut or you have to close it then it's not the end of the world.

Give her enough rope......eventually your other daughter and your grandchildren will see what's happening and learn the truth. In the meantime just concentrate on you.

DerbyshireLass Tue 06-Sep-22 01:26:40

Lucy. Our posts crossed. Glad to hear you didn't move and you kept on working. Good for you. You are right your situation would have been much worse if you had upped sticks to be near her,

Reaching rock bottom is hard but put it this way, the only way is up. You say whatever you do is wrong. I assume you mean wrong in yours daughters eyes but given that she has made her views and feelings quite clear maybe you should stop trying to please her or curry her favour. Sorry to be blunt but it's time to stop behaving like a whipped dog.

You can start by taking good care of yourself. It sounds frivolous but maybe a but of a makeover. Change your self image, You have probably lost some confidence so you will need to step out of your comfort zone but you can do it. Start with small steps, little wins.

Have you lost all your friends, if not then start by reaching out to them. Maybe you could start seeing your work colleagues socially now and again. Maybe join something like U3A or a meet up group. Do you have any special interests or hobbies that would allow you to meet people.

Listen to podcasts and motivational speakers. Watch films that make you laugh. Start reading for pleasure and/or enlightenment. Learn some new skills. Feed your brain with stimulating and interesting content, elevate your environment, upgrade your style, seek out things to do which lift your spirits and make your happy.

Can you afford a little holiday to help you reset and give you a kick start.

The world is waiting for you, don't let life pass you by.

Whiff Tue 06-Sep-22 06:17:24

Lucyloo I promise you talking out loud to your husband helps. I tell that to anyone who is a widow or widower. As you already know grief never dies you learn to cope. But I have found it harder every year. And at times still overwhelms me. But I just let the tears flow. I hurt myself by trying to be brave how foolish the 45 year old me was. But the 64 year old me is stronger in mind and body.

Why I moved was because no one was dependent on me where I lived. And moved to live closer to my children a move of over 100 miles. After my husband died had both parents and mother in law who needed me. Even though I hated my mother in law she was still family and without her I wouldn't have had my husband or children. My parents I loved very much . Like I said they needed me.

Both children came to Merseyside too uni. Our daughter was in her final year and our son had just started college where we lived when we were told my husband was terminal. My husband died in 2004. Mom was the last to die in 2017.

When our son went to uni I told my daughter she had to move back . She had come home to help her brother through A levels. But only did temp jobs. Plus she had already met her future husband at uni. He was from up here. My son's girlfriend moved up to be by him when he was at uni. After a year he couldn't cope so told him to stay and find a job as where we lived jobs where hard to find. Anyway he had made a new life.

I told both our children the same thing me and their dad had our time together now it was their time to live the lives they wanted.

After 2 house sales fell through moved to my bungalow in August 2019. I existed in my old house . I rattled round it and wasn't happy it wasn't where I wanted to be. I realised I had lost me. We get so wrapped up in our roles in life and I always put others first. Funny enough my son always said you need a bungalow mom and I still thought a house . But he was right.

Before my move I saw both the children 3-4 times a year. Once I moved saw my daughter and family every week. Our relationship goes from strength to strength. Saw my son every week with my 2 grandson's from the August until March 2020.

I was never invited to their house once I moved closer and only saw my daughter in law 3 times the last time boxing day 2019.

I was finally living my life to the full . Joined a craft group, exercise class and U3A. Made friends and never had such wonderful news neighbours. Health care here is brilliant so are transport links.

I don't think my daughter in law liked me living 40 mins away from them . But it was my son who sent the email in May 2020 . 4 days after I saw him on my birthday. August he sent a letter along with all the unopened birthday cards and birth gifts for my new grandson who was due in July. And that was the end of our relationship his choice not mine.

But I don't regret moving one bit. I love my new life . People know me before knowing about the rest of my life . And it's so freeing. I have found out things about myself I had lost.

And noticed the vast differences between my son and daughter's marriages . Plus I was never left alone with my grandson's by my son and daughter in law. Never gave them a bottle,changed a nappy or baby sat.

My daughter and son in law trust me completely to look after my 2 grandson's. Feed them,changed nappies ,bathed them and looked after them for hours by myself. They still trusted me with their eldest even when I still had my limb jerks and siezures. Haven't had them since their youngest was born.

Moving cost me my son and 3 grandson's but that was his choice. But I have gained so much more. I found me again ,have more friends than I ever had, neighbours that care , finally know why I have had health problems all my life especially the last 34 when my health got worse. See my daughter and grandson's every week. My life is so much better.

My son not only dumped me but all our side of the family. But he knows where I am if he ever wants me back in his life. But I will never forgive him or my daughter in law nor will I ever trust my son again. I had a loving caring son . I don't know who he is now.

Lucyloo you can do an anything you want, be who you want to be. Yes it's hard especially without the other half of yourself by your side. But don't let your daughters and grandchildren hurt you anymore . You are no one's whipping boy .

They wouldn't change but you can and must. You have years ahead of you what do you want out of life? Having jaundice was my wake up call. I decided I wanted 3 things move house, lose weight and get fit. Well I moved ,lost over 7 st and go to exercise class.

Have a good think what do you want ? And do it. Don't consider your daughter's to do what you want. It's hard but you can do it. Be the warrior queen you are deep down. ?

Spice101 Tue 06-Sep-22 08:02:49

Lucyloo it seems to me as though you need to think of yourself now. I can only imagine what it is like to be in your situation but no parent should be controlled as you are being by your daughter/s.

As others have said, it is time to take back your life. It seems you cannot please your daughter/s by trying to do as she thinks you should so don't try. Take your life by the horns and do with it as you please. If she is going to disapprove of everything you do then it does not matter what you do so do something for yourself and don't tell her.

Good luck.

DiamondLily Tue 06-Sep-22 09:10:59

I, honestly, would start to live the life you want to.

You've bought your girls up, but they are no longer your problem - if they want to thrash about, having tantrums and seeing themselves as victims, then let them.?

Your life is the only one you've got, so live it to the full, however you wish to do it - it's nothing to do with them. They have their lives, and should just concentrate on that.

This manipulation/threats/demands from some ACs drives me nuts.

What gives them the right to dictate how their parents live??

But, you can only be manipulated, abused, insulted and threatened if you allow it.

Ignore their demands, stand firm and work out what it is you want from life.

If you want friends, a relationship, hobbies etc then go for it.

We only live once,

Best wishes.?

VioletSky Tue 06-Sep-22 16:23:11

Lucylou I think you need to get some counselling to talk through this and make your doctor aware you are struggling.

Take with you any concerns bothbyou and your daughters have about your relationship so you can work out where issues are to resolve them in yourself.

You can't change others, only yourself. You need support to find yourself, heal and create the life you want.

Whether that life involves your daughters or not is on their terms but absolutely everything else is in your power.

Take it back

Smileless2012 Tue 06-Sep-22 16:39:11

I'm relieved you didn't move Lucy and listened to your gut, because the manipulation would have continued and may have increased as you'd have been and felt even more dependant on her good will, which is very sadly limited to say the least.

Your D has been messing with your head and your life ever since you lost your H. She's been so resentful of any friendships/relationships you've made that she's gone out of her way to destroy them and has succeeded, for 16 years.

If you're going to have a relationship with her it must be on your terms, not her's because her terms are not in your interests at all, they're all about her.

This is your life so make it all about you flowers.

Allsorts Tue 06-Sep-22 19:47:21

You have had much good advise Lucy. I was almost in your position, after my husband died my d changed, nothing I did was right, if I didn’t dance to her tune I didn’t see my gd.. Eventually you have to live for you as your worth it. What would your husband think of you becoming so low that you're a virtual recluse. Quietly do what you think is right, if they stop seeing you, turn it to your advantage, let them stop
away, book a holiday, let them stay away, they doesn’t make you happy just miserable, that’s not love. Do things for you, start to mix more with people, join some class that does activities you enjoy, make your home as fnice as you want it, I have been on this site many years, changed my name on it as I was being plagued by someone.
You are not worthless, you don’t hurt people so just stand up to your daughters and let the bullying stop. Only you can do it.

Knittingnovice Tue 06-Sep-22 20:25:47

I'm not good with words but feel your pain and I'm sending you a hug.

I'm grateful there are posters on here who have written excellent posts.

Catterygirl Wed 07-Sep-22 00:24:53

What is a mom.,, Does it mean mum? Is it a British term? I haven’t come across it before.

Whiff Wed 07-Sep-22 06:04:09

Catterygirl mom ,mommy,mum,mummy, momma are all terms for mother. Nan,nannie,nanny,gran,granny,grannie,nanna,grandma are all terms for grandmother.
Grandad and gramps are the only things my children called their grandad's .

Allsorts Wed 07-Sep-22 07:14:34

I'm a mom, so was my mother, never used the word mum, but don't ask me why as I don't know. I see mum written on cards and to me it's a strange term. Perhaps someone has the answer. I know Charles calls his mom, mummy, which I find amusing, so perhaps I'm just not upper class.

BlueBelle Wed 07-Sep-22 07:28:29

I d just like to offer you my thoughts as I can see how hurtful this is to you, especially the fact that your granddaughter has been turned against you
I think what you are doing is thinking thinking thinking so it takes up all your energy and oomph this is not going to be an easy road but can you try and build up something that you enjoy doing and gradually increase it Take up a new hobby something that you can get your teeth in, help others in some way talk to people more
If you can get counselling it would be a very safe place to offload, to enquire of yourself, and to seek on solutions
Good luck please don’t go from work to sitting in thinking
Do something out if your comfort zone you ll never believe how uplifting that can be

Lucyloo12 Wed 07-Sep-22 07:31:43

Hi Ladies, thank you so much for the positive feedback and common sense. I've been thinking of your replies overnight. Brutal as it is things will not get better, as you have quite rightly underlined, until I take control.... of me. I haven't got a plan, but many ideas how to get out of this deep hole. I hope this never happens to my own daughters, it's so painful. My husband used to say 'chin up' only remembered that yesterday... Will give it a whirl. X

Smileless2012 Wed 07-Sep-22 08:48:23

Ideas always come before plans Lucy so having them is a great first step.

It is brutal without a doubt but that doesn't mean it isn't doable; it is. There is life after estrangement, it's not the life we thought we would have or would have wanted, but it can still be a good one.

DiamondLily Wed 07-Sep-22 08:49:44

Good luck with it. Try and sit down, and work out what would give you enjoyment - whether it's a hobby, some sort of night school group, (if they still exist), clubs, or voluntary work. Whatever would float your boat.?

If your daughters start, just thank them calmly for their advice, ignore it, then get on with what you want to do.

We should never be dictated to by our AC or anyone else..?

Live the life you want to, and remember - you haven't got the attitude problem, they have.?

Madgran77 Wed 07-Sep-22 17:36:01

Lucyloo Ideas feed into plans which have to be made before meaningful action advice is start with small steps, don't go "big" too soon. You CAN build yourself a new life even if it isn't the one you expected flowers