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Discussion in 'Personal' started by knickersinatwist, Dec 21, 2011.

  1. ilovesooty

    ilovesooty Star commenter

    I don't see that at all. I think it's about pandering to social expectation. As I said, I think life's too short.
    Sounds to me as though the OP has gone the extra mile and more. Now she'll probably be expected to do it every year regardless of her own needs. Her mother's learned that her daughter will give in to make life easier as mum is apparently not well. I suspect that the OP will find herself in this position again now mum has found out how easy it is to get her wishes accommodated.
  2. I'm wondering why you see the mum as manipulative and unreasonable. If she said she would be 'embarrassed' then it is about her feelings being hurt. This kind of thing is completely normal and if you want to avoid it, there's an easy solution. Don't take part in a family Christmas and see the relatives you like some other time.
  3. ilovesooty

    ilovesooty Star commenter

    I think it's manipulative to allow your daughter to put her health and well being at risk (driving while exhausted, etc and putting her interaction with friends down her list of priorities) to accommodate your needs, particularly playing the health card in order to do so. The woman's menopausal, not suffering from illness, yet the OP has gone along with her wishes to "make life easier". Of course the OP might be a people pleaser by nature - and they always end up doing things they'd rather not do to avoid confrontation or unpleasantness. People like her mother who are seemingly prepared to manipulate to get what they want are well aware of that and take full advantage of it.
    I think it's about her social expectations not being met and possibly about her daughter not falling into line. And she got exactly what she wanted.
    If you accept that parents can be manipulative. It depends whether you're prepared to accept it.
    I'd agree with that. The options are to refuse or do the above, if you don't want to go along with others' expectations.

  4. Its interesting that you see not going along with others' expectations and doing your own thing of paramount importance. I think the kind of argument you're putting forward is more the kind of thing a counsellor would say to the OP, rather than someone who would be concerned about the family getting on.
    And I thought the OP said her mother was ill and she was having to do housework for her?
  5. kittylion

    kittylion Established commenter

    Coming at this from sort of the opposite direction, i was once one of those relatives who the person visiting was supposed to see. To make it easier (for them) my mother asked (told) me to come over to her house whilst my brother and his wife were there. I dutifully turned up and spent an hour trying to hold a conversation with them whilst they had a sandwich and got ready to go out and see friends. I wouldn't have minded this except that I was made to feel rather in the way and as if they were at a loss as to why i was there as they were going out for the evening anyway and they were returning home the next day. I felt really embarrassed as if I had forced myself upon them - and again this was to fit in with what my mother thought was due to her visiting son. When they had left to go out she said "Well you had time for a nice chat anyway" very brightly and I'm afraid I just lost it and told her how I felt.

    However the next time they visited she tried to arrange the same thing again but I could then remind her of the previous time and I told her that as he had travelled a long way and only had a few days, she really should leave it up to him to decide how he wanted to spend his time. I said that if he wanted to see me he had only to ask - he didn't. Oddly enough he didn't until he had his own family and then suddenly family became more important to him - what a surprise!

    Now as a mother of adults myself I have told my children that however they want to spend their Christmases is fine with me even if I have Christmas alone - well that'd be great - I would relish it! Having said that, I can't seem to get rid of them. Certainly if one came back on a visit I wouldn't insist on them going to visit their sibling unless they wanted to.
  6. kittylion

    kittylion Established commenter

    Sorry - this site seems to take no notice of my paragraphing.
  7. as has been said, if her feelings were being hurt, she would probably have said 'hurt' or 'upset'. 'embarrassed' is almost certainly about social expectations. but even if she were genuinley sad, it is not the op's role in life to keep her mother happy all the time - she seems to go the extra mile on a regular basis as is it - this time, mum manipulated her into the extra marathon
    op - another year, could you do an 'at home' as someone suggested - a whole morning or afternoon, not a rushed hour-before-you-go-out as described in a post above, with tea and sandwiches or whatever, where all realatives who wish to catch up are free to come and see you?
    bet they mostly don't bother, mind

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