Saturday, February 28, 2009

BPD Mother | Meddling with Our Lives (1)

Recently my brother has been going through some very challenging times in his life. During this time, as I wrote earlier, my mother popped her head into his life by contacting him through Facebook (Rearing Their Ugly Heads) -- note that she couldn't contact me as I blocked her, so I am 'invisible'. Anyway, my brother opted to not communicate with her through Facebook, and also blocked her (not letting her into his 'world'), but decided to email with her.

In the very short time they've been emailing, he's gotten so deep into his financial obligations that he ended up in jail as he made a court appearance on a delinquent account ( Adult Child in Crisis with Personality Disorder Parents) and the court demanded money up front, which he couldn't pay, so they hauled him off to the clink. He's been collect-calling his fiance, our Dad, and our mother while in there. And my mother has now been communicating with my brother's fiance as well. UGH.

Just as I thought that I had some peace from the toxicity of my parents, here we go again. I don't know why, but my mother has been talking negatively to my brother's fiance (I have a solid relationship with the fiance). I am still BAFFLED as to why my mother, who would sing my praises up and down -- all day long, would (after not seeing eye-to-eye about my wedding thoughts... not plans as we had just gotten engaged: Little Women) cut me off, do a 180 degree turn, and vilify me. And just after I thought that I had cleared myself of this toxicity out of my life, as I haven't heard from her or had any damaging influence from her in 5 years, here she is AGAIN, stirring up her pot of brew.

I am just sick over how she has reared her head into the picture again, trying to appear like she is acting in my brother's best interests when she's only seen him ONCE in the last TWENTY years. They haven't even TALKED in the last TEN! All the sudden, like the crusader she is, she is trying to act like she knows her son and is going to rescue him, becoming the hero. Then she'll do like she always has-- knock him down with verbal & mental abuse and reject him once again. My brother needs support-- genuine, unconditional love-- during this time of serious trying times. My mother is the opposite of what he needs-- here goes this cycle with him, once again!

Anyway, all of this has got me thinking of her and how she would say to me (even just before we started this recent estrangement in 2004), "You are all I have, I am all you have. I am the only one that will take care of you, as your Dad won't look after you because he doesn't have your best interests in mind".

Now, what I left out of this blog, my history (In the Beginning), is that I had a different father at birth, and at a few months old, my mother divorced him in order to marry her high school sweetheart. He adopted me, and that is my Dad. My baby album and baby book were both altered, and absolutely no evidence of my birth father remained. No words were spoken about this birth father, but I did know about him. I didn't care-- my Dad is my Daddy, my father, and who I love. All my memories from the earliest are with my Dad, and I love him with all my heart.

When my mother messed around on my Dad with his best friend (late 1970's / early 1980's), and that whole tumultuous divorce happened (You Dropped a Bomb on Me), my mother had moved into an apartment. If you read in the blog about the divorce and all the crazy crap that happened, my mother and Dad had a very dramatic, confusing, and hurtful divorce that involved us kids. They both were going after each other with all they had-- which included using the kids to hurt the other.

Well, when I went to visit my mother for visitation when I was 13 years old, my mother, OUT OF THE BLUE, says to me one afternoon, "I know how to get a hold of your birth father. Would you like to speak to him?" I was taken back by the question but curious. I remember entertaining the notion, and we did speak to him for a short phone call. After that, I had no interest whatsoever talking to him again. LITTLE DID I KNOW, my mother used this information -- that I was in touch with my birth father-- to hurt my Dad. She leaked the information, making sure he found out. And I didn't find out until recently how much that hurt him. My mother is ruthless.

Now, later when I moved in with my mother as a teenager, she again pushed the idea of communicating with my birth father. What her motive was, I don't know for sure, but I feel like she was trying to 'right a wrong' (taking his baby from him and and abruptly leaving him the way she did) by getting me back in touch AND trying to hurt my Dad even more. Funny, but I was not interested in the least in getting together, talking with, or whatever with my birth father.

During a trip to Williamsburg, VA with my mother and step-father, I got a case of food poisoning VERY BADLY. I was very ill on the drive home as well, but my mother insisted that we drive by where my birth father lives, in the dark of the evening, and meet him and his family at a McDonalds. Remember how much I have used the word 'bizarre' in my blog posts?? Well this meeting epitomizes BIZARRE. I didn't have much to say, and I was like an animal on display at the zoo. After eating some burgers, we got back in the car and were on our way again.

My mother definitely had an agenda.

When she and I had an estrangement when I went off to college (she claimed that I didn't love her because I came into town and didn't call her: Out of the Nest), she proceeded to call my birth father and his family and tell them ALL KINDS of crazy things about me. She told them outright lies, very awful things. Why in the world would a loving, caring, and supportive mother do this type of thing to her child!? BAFFLING.

She certainly tried to create a wedge between my Dad and me. She tried as hard as she could to discredit our relationship, make him seem so evil (nicknamed him Captain Nasty), and would become enraged if his name was even brought up. I think she has tried to alienate me so that I am dependent on her-- trying to guarantee that I wouldn't leave her.

She has also brought up the fact that I have a different father than my brother to my brother at stunningly inappropriate time. First of all, why bring it up anyway--she created the deception from the very beginning! Second of all, I love my brother with all my heart & soul. I don't care of he's full or half blood, but why bring this up if it's not necessary!? Third of all, now that we are adults, and I know how I want to conduct MY life, I don't want to talk about the issue PERIOD.

Well, my mother hadn't seen my brother in TEN years when she went into the hospital for a pulmonary embolism in 1999. I flew my brother to see her as the condition could be fatal. This was the first time that my brother, mother, and me were all together in the same room in almost FIFTEEN years. So, we were all in the hospital room, and my mother was acting like Mr. Hyde. I don't know what got into her, but there she was in the hospital bed, being very boisterous, pushy, and rotten. I was trying my hardest to get my brother to the hospital in between working and so forth, and during this particular visit, I had to get to work.

OUT OF THE BLUE, my mother brings up that I have a different father, and that my brother "is ONLY" my half brother. WHAT!? Excuse me!? I was floored. My brother means the world to me, and to have her even step into that area to try to put a wedge into my relationship with him-- HELL NO. I remember feeling breathless and wanting to put my hand over her mouth. What is her purpose!? Again, what is up with her!? My brother was stunned looking, kind of blank. But I quickly changed the subject, and my brother followed suit.

I brought this up with my mother later-- saying that I would appreciate allowing me to divulge information about my life, and in regard to this, there was no reason to bring this up. She reminded that my brother being a half brother is only a 'fact', and I agreed but added that if the fact is so innocent and neutral why did she take such extensive efforts to hide this fact for DECADES. My brother has enough going on in his life (and believe me, he DOES), trying to shatter his sense of family for no reason is ruthless. Not only that, he is my ONLY family that is the pure, honest, and unconditional love from my original family unit of mother, Dad, and brother.

Next, about 6 years ago, we were sitting out on my back deck when she said that she is upset with my Dad to this day because he left her. SAY WHAT!? She said that although she was having an affair with his friend, she had no plans to leave my Dad. She said that she was forced to tell my Dad when my Dad's friend decided to tell his wife (he was in a miserable marriage and wanted out). Anyway, my mother said that although she admitted the affair and wanting a divorce, she said that my Dad abandoned her because he walked away. She said that he could have asked to stay and that she reminded him of that, but he just ignored her and walked up the driveway. All of this is SO typical borderline! Fear of rejection and abandonment! Anyway, that's why she becomes so CRAZY when my Dad is brought up-- he did the unthinkable for a BPD... he rejected AND abandoned her.

Once I was older, she would continually say to me how we are the only family we have and how much we need each other. I would never respond because I didn't view things the same as her. Although she had cut off her father, sister, son, and more, I hadn't. I didn't have an isolationist point of view like she did. She also talked about her Will more than once, reminding me that she would take care of me because my birth father won't be, my Dad won't be... so, she reminded, I should remember that she is the only one I've got.

Well, as I mentioned earlier, my mother and I didn't see eye-to-eye on my wedding thoughts: Little Women. And on that day that she blew up on me, saying that she is out of the wedding, she shouted out that she was going to call my birth father and tell him that he and his family aren't invited to my wedding. WHAT AGAIN!? This is the point that I got PISSED as it's one thing for her to be mad, threaten to stay out of my wedding, or whatever, but when she starts to bring people into her crazy rage, that's completely uncalled for. In the past she's started a campaign of letter writing and phone calls to degrade me, but this time she is threatening to meddle right to my face.

I asked her why she would WANT to tell them they aren't invited when NO ONE was invited to the wedding as NO wedding plans had even been STARTED! She said again, "That's it. I am telling them that they aren't invited" as if to egg me on to talk about them. I told her not to mess with my life, and questioned why she would even want to try to hurt people like that, especially since it's an outright lie. Once backed into a corner, she went back to shouting that she is out of the wedding.

I was baffled at her outrage. I was baffled at how she decided to handle herself. I was baffled at her attack on me. I was baffled at how she suddenly changed from the loving mother to the wicked witch.

By the way, my birth father wasn't invited to my wedding. Why would he be? My Dad is my father. Not only that, he was contributing to some of the wedding expenses. Why would I show my appreciation for his generosity by having my birth father, who gave up his rights as my father so that my Dad could take care of me since I was an infant, attend my wedding (especially given we don't have a relationship)!? What a huge slap in the face that would be! And why is my mother so insistent on having my birth father, Dad, AND step-father all in the same place at the same time!? Can't she see how uncomfortable that would be for not only them but for ME!? She left my birth father for her high school sweetheart (flying out to see her high school sweetheart BEFORE she even asked for a divorce), cheated on my Dad with his best friend, and is now married to my Dad's ex best friend. Do you really think these men want to hang out together? Isn't my wedding supposed to be the happiest day of my life? Why would she want to put me in such a NO WIN situation? And that's what she was trying to do that day on the deck when she brought all this up. I walked out of her house that day, and I haven't talked to her since. She, however, started a campaign of vilifying me that hasn't stopped to this day.

Looking back at my life, my mother created my path by meddling in my life, taking away my birth father, having me adopted, removing all evidence of my birth father (creating the deception), trying to push my Dad and me apart by bringing my birth father back into the picture, and continually trying to discredit my Dad and my relationship to the present day. Each move she made, she effected my life by trying to alienate me. She seemed to try to position herself as the only family member in my life, to create a dependence on her, and to attempt to guarantee loyalty so that she isn't rejected or abandoned.

Ultimately, however, she failed to keep herself honorable in my life as she has lost credibility, trust, and love through her ruthlessness, conditions, and bizarre nature of her moves. She did manage to effect my relationship with my Dad-- and of course effect my relationship with my birth father by removing him from my life as an infant. Now that she and I are estranged, and I don't have contact with my Dad either, I feel very alone in regard to parents... like I am parentless.


  1. My wife suffers from BPD. Diagnosed by her last psychiatrist, which is why she stopped seeing him. Followed by five years of counseling, waiting for her to accept the diagnosis and accept treatment.
    Our marriage is a wreck, she self medicated with alcohol, lies constantly, lost her job over it, berates our children, and all because she believes we are all against her.
    How can I help her get to the point where she can accept the diagnosis? Our marriage counselor has quietly agreed with me and the psychiatrist, but won't push the matter. She is still working on winning the confidence of my BP wife, but I am losing my patience.

  2. Your wife sounds like my mother ("Diagnosed by her last psychiatrist, which is why she stopped seeing him"). If they don't agree with what they hear, they discard and start over. My mother has done that with DR's, friends, family members, you name it. I don't know if she will ever accept the diagnosis-- so, in the meantime, take care of yourself. You're the only one you have!

  3. Wow Gretel,
    I can agree with you and understand your emotions. When I turned 17 is when I found out that my last name was actually the same as my birth father. My mom left when I was 2 and when she met my step dad who I also think of as dad, they forged my dads signature and changed it to my mothers maiden name. I was shocked and did not have a relationship with my dad because my mom scared the crap out of me with him. It was more like a punishment if you do this your going to live with your father then the famous words you don't want that trust me. My mother meddles and still does.

  4. Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment. Definitely my mother used Parental Alienation (PAS: to alienate me from my birth father... and then when I was in my tweens and teens, my Dad. My Dad also used PAS with my brother and me to try to turn us against my mother when the divorce first started. Ultimately, my childhood / tweens / teens were full of confusing head-games. Again, thanks for stopping by. I wish you peace and love in your life.

  5. This all sounds so familiar. I haven't had contact with my mother for over 20 years, and just only a few days ago discovered that there apparently exists a name for the hell i grew up with: borderline personality disorder mother.
    I have 3 (half) brothers who still communicate (if you want to call it that) with her, basically because they are terrified of what she will do if they don't.
    When I was 6 years old, my mother told me that I was a twin, and that when she was pregnant with me and my twin sister, that I was so mean I kicked her out of the womb and she died. I remember this vividly because I was not only horrified, but scared i was in trouble for murder. I didn't know what to say, but as this was--to me--a worse "crime" than the times I had dared to get something to eat out of the refrigerator, I figured I was about to get what I what my brothers and I were always threatened with (and got at times)--to have my ass beat so hard I couldn't stand up or sit down".
    Come to find out as an adult, there was no twin--the entire thing was made up. WHY?! I'm 48 years old now and have wracked my brain for years trying to figure out the motive behind this (and other) beyond bizarre evils. To no avail.
    I could tell tale after tale after tale, but it doesn't make it feel any better. It just gets me worked up and scared all over again.
    Basically, it boils down to that she would do and say REALLY shitty things (to all of us, but mostly me---she seemed threatened by my being female) and then--what was worst of all to me--make HERSELF into the "victim".
    If any of us ever confronted her about her erratic, volatile, unjust behavior she would first cry and deny it to garner sympathy, and if that didn't work, she would come unglued and turn into SATAN himself--screaming and physically violent.
    It didn't stop when i was an adult--she insinuated herself into my life at every opportunity to sabotage me with secretive lies and plots until i finally threatened her to get her to stay away from me. But i am aware through my brothers that she googles me up and keeps tabs on me behind my back. Recently she sent an email to my older brother that he passed along to me that ended with "I hope all of you are happy with your feelings and your treatment of me--so be it". UNBELIEVABLE.
    15 years ago I got married (to a man she's never met) and she sent a packet of photos through one of my brothers. She sent childhood photos to all my brothers, so it appeared she was just sending family pictures. But when i opened it up, there were 2 pictures of me as a kid and another envelope with my husbands name on it. I opened that and inside were photos of my 2 previous weddings. Not note, just wedding pictures.
    Gretel, if you think your mother is going to change, or that you are going to be able to confront her with her bullshit and make her own up to it, you are not only wasting your time, but harming yourself further (which would make her happy--misery loves company).
    Cut off ALL contact. See a counselor so you have someone to explain this insanity to. And make your own life, leaving her behind. You can't change what she did, and you can't "overcome" it. You can only deal with it and change yourself and how YOU react to things that remind you of her. And slowly chip away (through self analyzing) at your outrage of her.
    Good luck. And you are NOT alone.

  6. Thank you so much for your comments, sentiment, and story. As far as my situation, I have had no contact with my mother in 8 years. We have been estranged in cycles of 5 years on / 5 years off until this last blow-up which is now permanent. I will not expose my child to her madness... and I cannot live my life subjected to her dysfunction & toxicity. If you read further into my blog, you can find the details :)) All my best to you! May peace & love surround you.

  7. I am reading various parts of your blog with great interest. I only found out a few days ago what the name of this hellish insanity is, and have been researching since then (that's how i found your blog). I am relieved to have a name to call it (instead of trying to describe it over and over) and relieved that it wasn't just me. Not that i'm glad others have gone through this---just glad to not feel so alone.
    My mother was emotionally, physically, and mentally abusive to everyone in our family. We lived in terror of the next blow up, which always came sooner rather than later. We spent years trying to figure out how to prevent these blow ups--a form of self blame. If and when she ever would apologize--and it was always for the wrong thing--it ALWAYS turned into a self pity fest (for herself, of course).
    I see that many BPD people are suicidal and/or self mutilating. My mother was not. Why hurt yourself when you can hurt everybody else???
    When i was 16 i got married to escape. Out of the frying pan and into the fire! after 2 years of abuse from an alcoholic, I divorced him. My mom wanted to "help" me. I was still so screwed up and disoriented from the imaginary world of lies and blame I grew up in, I actually believed this. I had an infant son. She told me to leave him with her so i could hide from the soon to be violent ex. I did. Behind my back, she called the court and had little evil pow-wows with the magistrate in my divorce case. She told unbelievable lies (I still don't know some of them) about me being a drug addict and abusive parent (the truth was i was probably too permissive in an attempt to be the opposite of her). Who wouldn't believe these shitty statements from someone's own mother? Twisted out of all reality, it made her look like a concerned parent who was able to be honest and look out for the best interests of her daughter and grandson (which is probably what she believed too)--instead of the diabolical weirdo that she actually was. WHAT A SURPRISE! I lost custody of my son. I didn't know at the time (DUH!) she was involved in this, and went crying to her. She told me to go see a lawyer and leave my son there and under no circumstances, turn him over to the bad guy ex. Off I went to my lawyer appointment, only to call her an hour later--she was crying and said the police came and took my son. Years later, my stepdad and 2 younger brothers admitted what really happened--as soon as i left, she called the police and told them I was trying to kidnap my son and she didn't want any part of it. My ex moved and hid from me a year later. my "mom" knew where he was but didn't tell me that. She worked at social services for a while (can you believe that?!) and so i couldn't get any help locating my son through them--somehow, it became "secret" info, and they were protecting my son from me. And leaving him with an abusive alcoholic instead. I spent wads of money and time trying to locate my son before i finally found him when he was 16. His father was in prison, so i didn't have to deal with that jerk at least. My son told me mind boggling stories about various interactions he'd had with my mom over the years--when I was led to believe (by her) that she had no idea where he was. She told him our family is Blackfoot Indian (a weird, unnecessary, and puzzling lie) and that i deserted him so i could party. WHAT A BITCH! My son is now 29 years old. the contact we have had has been spotty at best, and i haven't heard from him in over 3 years. he's pissed off at me for deserting him. end part 1

  8. start part 2
    These stories go on and on--some even worse than this. I can never forgive her for any of this. Ever. I don't want to hate her anymore--I want to be completely indifferent. I don't want my stomach to hurt and my outrage to flare up every time someone mentions her.
    It was an excellent thing to cut off all contact with her over 20 years ago. It gave me the time i needed to sort myself out, and learn how to become a normal person. But i am now discovering it isn't enough. I have shoved this part of my life in the closet out of view, hoping it would go away. And the immediate disorienting drama/crisis/soap opera world DID go away. But other things did not. Like how I feel. My hate. My fear. My anger. My outrage. Those things sound bad, but they were actually good at first--it was the beginning of me standing up for myself. Being outraged meant i wasn't accepting the blame or guilt. I never thought i was accepting those things (not like my brothers so obviously did) but I was, more than i thought, in other ways that weren't so plain. It's time to move past these feelings and into some new ones. But I'm not sure how--it's slow going and painful.
    The time has come. It feels like "level up" in a video game or something. it's time to face the monster under the bed. Not directly--I can't ever beat her at her own game and don't want to. But within myself. I can't change her. But i can change me. part of me is screaming inside "BUT I'M NOT THE ONE WHO NEEDS TO CHANGE!" but I do. I have to let her go. I thought I did when I cut her off. But apparently I didn't inside. i'm working on that now.
    In the past, when I've tried to tell people about what I lived through, I would see a point where eventually the look in their eyes was that they didn't believe me anymore--they thought i was exaggerating and obsessed; full of the desire for sympathy--no mother could really be THAT bad. Truth was, I hadn't even told them 1/8 of it yet! And I didn't want sympathy--I wanted confirmation that this really was wrong and outrageous, because I THOUGHT it was but wasn't entirely sure on some level, because of all the self doubt, the shattered self image, the battered self esteem, and just too many years in a world of lies and deceit. what's the truth and what's a lie? what's reality and what's a fantasy? That became very important to me. meaning i am/was still reacting to her. And how could i not? I walked on eggshells my entire childhood and it didn't do any good. I feel like a veteran of a front line war that lasted every day for 25 years. Actually, I AM.
    Other people who had regular human parents can't fathom this or understand it. They also don't understand why it is consuming (PTSD). Or that while I have and will continue to heal from this, it will never be completely gone--just like a war veterans experiences don't just disappear.
    I'm glad beyond words to find your blog. I need someone to talk to who understands in a way others cannot. If you want to communicate with me further, my name is Debbie and my email is

  9. "My mother is ruthless." (check)
    "My mother definitely had an agenda." (check)
    They have very vivid "imaginations" and very HORRIBLE "abilities." They will backpack certain Truths for years and climb the Andes if necessary just to dump them on your doorstep in an devastating avalanche.
    And they'll have that trademark smirk while your world explodes under tons of deadly "snowflakes."