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my mum has been having an affair. How can I ever forgive her?

Discussion in 'Personal' started by Shifter, Dec 19, 2011.

  1. Shifter

    Shifter New commenter

    FA to do with you - your Mum's an adult - get over it
  2. I can understand how upsetting this is for you OP but your father has apparently forgiven her and wants you to do the same. It will not be helpful to him if you cannot be at least civil to her. It sounds as though he has enough problems without you lashing out at her.
    Try for your father's sake.
  3. clear_air

    clear_air New commenter

    Your family has everything to do with you. The behaviour of your parents, and your relationship with them certainly affects you, and any children you may have (or already have). To think that parents may act as they please without reference to their children is hideously selfish, in my view. Your mum may be an adult. This does not mean she does not have any responsibilities towards you, her child, or anyone else in her family. I hope you get your feelings sorted, OP.
  4. Those that are telling the OP is isn't any of her business and 'get over it' are really insensitive. Of course it's to do with her. It's her family. My parents split up when I was 25, and it really hurt. It was my Dad that had the affair. I also found it very hard to deal with. OP you have my sympathy, and I hope you don't let it get you down too much.

    absolutely agree clear_air!
  5. I'm afraid I disagree. By the time you are 25 you have your own life and move away from parents. Why should they get along lovingly/stay together for their children's sake for fear of upsetting them. This is niave.
  6. Anonymous

    Anonymous New commenter

    Presumably most of the adults on this thread would object if their parents interfered in their relationships so I can't see why they'd expect to have a say in their parents' relationship. It is for them to sort out their problems - it really isn't anything to do with adult children. I say that as an adult with adult children...I'd be mightily ****** off if my children thought they had the right to influence, in any way, my relationships either with their father or current partner.
  7. I dont think anyone is suggesting parents should stay together for the sake of their adult children - just that a marriage break up naturally affects the people who love them. In cheating, the OP's Mum hurt the OP's Dad so of course she has feelings about it. Surely the difference with your children's relationships is that there is only one person you feel that loyalty to - your child. As close as you might get to your children's partners, if they hurt your child wouldn't you be upset and angry?
    I think the OP is looking for a way forward in her emotions and interactions with her mother, I dont think she has suggested interferring with their relationship.
  8. Doglover

    Doglover Occasional commenter

    My aunt and uncle separated about a year ago now.
    It was her decision, and at the time my uncle was devastated.
    They have 2 grown-up children and one is married.
    Every time a decision has to be made, like what to do with the house, getting a divorce etc, my aunt insists they sit down as a family and discuss it.
    To be honest this is where I think the relationship went wrong in the first place. My aunt never saw the relationship with her husband as different to the relationship with their children.
    Of course a family unit should be close, but there has to be an element of the husband/wife relationship, which is independent of the children.He is my uncle by marriage and I am very happy for him, and will never judge him on it. My cousins are not altogether happy about it, but are making an effort to get to know the lady and are trying to be as fair as they can. My aunt however keeps trying to involve them in it. Despite it being a new and difficult situation for them all, they are glad to see at least one of their parents happy.
    I understand why the OP is upset, but this is her parents's relationship, and I am afraid she will have to accept and support whatever her parents want to do, whether she agrees with it or not.
  9. your mum can only manipulate the rest of you if you let her. easy to say, not, i know, so easy to follow through
    nevertheless, what your dad has chosen to give up is his business - and it's his choice, same as staying with your mum - you see it as her manipulation, but he has (and should be given credit for) a mind of his own
    sorry - i can't see this in your post - do you have siblings? if they are part of the everyone who is reeling from this, and you all get on, can you try to get together and encourage each other to get on with your own lives - my late father was horribly manipulative if allowed to be, but we 4 backed each other up and minimised the effect he had on us (we could have nullified it altogether, i suppose, but none of us fancied the rows and stand-offs that might have required - we each choose how far to go)
    and as for your own relationship - no! no! no! this is you and your partner, not your mum and dad - why should one relationship that upsets you make you feel 'love is doomed'? you must know plenty of happy couples - whether you choose to look at them or dwell on your parents is also your choice
    if you cannot summon up the emotional energy to look at life this way, i would suggest, as others have, you try professional councelling for a while - at the very least, see if you can learn to get out there and live a cracking good life, if only for revenge!
  10. no-one is saying this - of course they shouldn't stay together for fear of upsetting the children - but the daughter is allowed to be upset about it. It's only natural to be upset when your parents split no matter your age. If it starts affecting your adult relationships however, then I agree with the other posters, and counselling is the way to go.
  11. My mam and dad have gone though some really rough times and they never really managed to get on with each other after that. It is hard knowing that your parents are miserable. But in your case your dad seems pleased and your mum is content enough. There isn't much that you can do except accept your dad's decision and avoid your mum where possible so you don't end up causing grief. Good luck.
  12. ilovesooty

    ilovesooty Star commenter

  13. dumpty

    dumpty Star commenter

    Hopefully not how it worked out for you personally - but what a sad summation and ultimate equation of a life of loneliness and detachment.
    If you cannot get emotional and emotionally involved with the absolute closest people to you on this planet, what chance of being happy with others in your life?

  14. 'getting emotionally involved' and 'interfering' are not the same thing at all - we rejoice and are merry with our loved ones, we mourn and commiserate with them, we proffer help gladly (but are gracious enough to back away when it is not wanted) but that does not mean we do or should interfere in their lives and their decisions

  15. It seems to me that you are angry with your mum about all the other stuff and now you have been handed a really good justification for your anger and you are intending to make the most of it.
    It is for your dad to forgive the infidelity. Your choice is whether to forgive the other stuff or not. And it is your choice. Saying "how can I ever forgive her" is just dramatisation. If you want to forgive her, forgive her. I don't think you do.
  16. lindenlea

    lindenlea Star commenter

    I entirely understand your strong feelings over this difficult situation. I agree with others that you would be wise to speak to a counsellor about this as it is in danger of affecting other relationships. You need to sort out your feelings for your own benefit and to get peace of mind. I disagree with those posters who imagine anyone can switch off emotional reactions to the actions of their parents once they are adult. I'm 60 and my parents can, and do, still pull my strings.
  17. Thank you for all your responses. They made interesting reading. I'm still being moderated so I hope it's not ages before my reply gets posted.
    In response to some: I have no intention of ever interfering with their relationship, that isn't my business or interest. My only concern really is that I need to build up some level of tolerance for my mother again if we are ever to get together as a family again. The poster that said I need to want to forgive her has it spot on, and I'd not thought of it. I dislike her intensely and it would be most convenient for me if she'd disappear off the face of the planet but since it seems she's hanging around for now I need to work out a way of tolerating her presence for the sake of my dad and siblings. My youngest sister has just had her first baby, a few weeks ago, Mum has shown no interest at all despite living five minutes walk away. I'm trying to fill that gap for her as she needs support and love right now.
    There are a thousand reasons why I don't /can't like Mum. I am an adult and I have been to counselling about it. I suppose in the past I've always felt terrible guilt for my feelings about Mum because she's had depression and I always felt I should be able to love her despite everything because she's 'ill.' Now I feel no guilt at all, I suppose I feel justified in disliking her and perhaps it's easier for me to stay like it.
    I don't want to poke my nose into what happens between then but it is hard to like a person who's treating your Dad so badly they are losing weight dramatically and clearly so unhappy. What they do is their business. If Dad's really happy then I need to find a way to come to some sort of peace over it without screaming at Mum. I've never rowed with her. She doesn't know how I feel although she knows we're not 'close' and wishes we were.
    I have decided to go away for Christmas so I'm avoiding that one. I know I can't avoid it all forever though.
  18. giraffe

    giraffe New commenter

    I suppose in some way, your mum's actions have confirmed you in your bad opinion of her.
    That's something to keep to yourself really.
    Best place for those sort of feelings is in counselling so that they don't get aired in front of your dad or your mum. You have to be very adult about this, even though it's your parents that are the issue concerning you.
    Ultimately, they have to sort out this in their own private life and as a grown-up child you will have feelings about it, but ones which you will have to deal with apart from your relationship with them. It's that moment when you start to appreciate them as fallible and human. Tough.
  19. If it had been your dad who'd had the affair would you feel any different? Would you excuse it 'mum's so difficult', or find it equally hard to forgive him? I don't think it's the affair that's the problem, it's how you feel about your mum. I really feel for you!
  20. hockeysticks

    hockeysticks New commenter

    You have had lots of different opinions, however what struck me was the fact that it is affecting your own relationship. Don't let it - hopefully your partner is sympathetic to your feelings and is presumably the closest relationship you have. Don't let your mothers problems destroy your (hopefully) good relationship. You are not your mother and therefore there is no reason why your relationships should not work.

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