I'm new to LiveJournal and it's communities, please forgive me if I'm doing this wrong :)
I just typed out an introduction, and realized after I was finished that it was waaay too long! It’s amazing, how once you start ‘talking’ about this, it all comes pouring out.
Here is a scaled down version of my intro :)
My situation is similar to many I've read here, I'm the adult daughter of a mother with a personality disorder. I'm a bit different than the rest of you here though, in that I am also disabled...I was born with a muscle disease, and have been a wheelchair user since the age of 12 (I'm in my 40's now).
My childhood was a good one, for the most part. It wasn't obvious to me during my childhood that my mom has a personality disorder...I mean, I can remember odd things happening sometimes, and the fact that there was always a lot of alcohol use, but nothing glaringly obvious.
I met a terrific man and got married when I was in my early 20’s. During the first year or so of my marriage, my mom remained close to my husband and myself, we did a lot of 'family' things together. Then things started to really change. My mom had been a clerical worker my entire childhood, and she suddenly announced that she wanted to become a bartender. So she quit her job, started tending bar at a local beer pub, and began distancing herself from me. I wouldn't hear from her for weeks at a time...and that was definitely different. When I tried to talk to her about things, about how I missed seeing her and talking to her, she exploded. She told me that she had her own life to live, and she was going to live it any way she saw fit. She went on to say that I had been her responsibility when I was young, and she had met that responsibility. But I was now my husband's responsibility, no longer hers, and she was going to live her life the way she wanted. Her outburst honestly floored me. I hadn't realized she saw me as such a responsibility...such a burden. I had NOT wanted to try to stop her from living her own life, I only wanted to be a part of it. Her revelations really hurt me, and she and I drifted apart after that.
Fast forward 15 years, to a couple of years ago, when all hell broke lose in my world. My mother started having delusions, and admitted herself to a mental hospital.
The next 9 months were torture. She went back and forth between the mental hospital, and a nursing facility. She would have weeks where she was completely psychotic...having auditory and visual hallucinations, sometimes becoming violent. And
then would have a week or so of lucidity...and then would swing back the other way. It was a hellish time for all of us.
The docs at first thought she was Schizophrenic, but kept backing away from that diagnosis because of her age...then they started talking bipolar, and that maybe she had been able to keep it somewhat hidden before by self medicating (all the alcohol and meds), but they could not be sure. Anyway, they got her off all the narcotics, and of course the alcohol, and she slowly started to improve, the psychotic episodes ceased.
The docs released her, and told her she could resume her 'normal life' after 9 months. They stressed to her and to us that she should *never* drink, or take narcotics again...to which she readily agreed, she said she was happy to have been given a second chance at a normal life. I'm sure you can all see where this is heading....
She went home, and within weeks started drinking. Within months, she was back on pain meds. I kept trying to talk to her, and every time I did she would become enraged...telling me to butt out of her life, or she would disown me. She says she does not have any kind of personality disorder, certainly is not bipolar, and what happened to her was a fluke, caused by combining all the different narcotics that she did. She says she can control her 'addictive personality' now, and will only take the one narcotic pain med...not the hordes of other meds she combined it with before.
Over the last year and a half, things between us have gotten steadily worse. Her apathetic attitude of the last 15 years towards me has turned to one of open hostility. It has become a huge problem for me, because it has started to affect my health. Stress really affects my disability in a negative way, I have lost a large amount of strength over the last two
years, due to the open hostility she heaps upon me. My Internists keep telling me that I have to put distance between her and I, for the sake of my own health.
My husband and I moved away several months ago...we had been planning it for the last 10 years, so the move wasn't 'because' of my mother, but I have to admit I was looking forward to getting some distance from her. Well, I have the physical distance, but she has continued to harass me by phone. She is so verbally abusive, it's hard to imagine this is the same woman who raised me. It's like someone else has taken up residence inside her, because she is absolutely not the mom I grew up with...that mom would not do these things to me, that mom would not intentionally inflict pain on me, and would not do things that she knew could adversely affect my health.
I have so many conflicting feelings...I miss the mom that I once knew, and I am scared of this mean, vindictive person she has become. How do you deal with this?
I know this post is still much too long, sorry about that :)