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An Unsupportive Mom

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Old 07-14-2012, 07:34 PM   #1
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Default An Unsupportive Mom

I don't know what to do about my mom. Last year I went on a diet and lost 30lbs but gained it all back by Christmas. My mom was always my number 1 Fan, but when I told her I was dieting and actually started to lose weight. She just became so nasty to me. It got to the point where my dad and boyfriend even noticed how mean she was being. She would tell me it looked like I wasnt doing to well. Or when I would eat something she would make a comment about how could I lose weight if I was eating that. Eventually She just quit really talking to me. She used to come to my house a few times a week, but she also quit coming over. I was so upset. When I started gaining the weight back she acted thrilled about it and began talking to me again like nothing ever happened.

This time when I started dieting ( a better way this time that I can hopefully maintain) I haven't said a word to her about it. I scared that it's going to be like last time. I've lost 14lbs so far, and I think she has noticed because she told me it looked like I lost some weight. I told her it must be from the heat, but I've noticed some cold shouldering.

I just don't know what to do. My mom is overly sensitive about things. She had breast cancer a few years ago and had a double mastectomy. I know how traumatic that was for her. Since then she has kinda become a hypochondriac. I know how scary that was for her and how she must worry about her health. It seems like every other day she has a new disease. One time within a week she was telling everyone that she had diabetes, graves disease, and a broke a bone in her foot. I love her, but you can't talk to her about it because she freaks out. My dad is to the point where he is never home with her. He always goes fishing or out with his friend. He's tried to talk to her and tell her that everything is okay. He's been really sympathetic, but she will just yell at him that he's calling her, her mother. My moms mom is a hardcore hypochondriac. She always hated that about her, but now has become her.

Because of those reasons I'm scared to tell her that she makes me feel bad. I know it doesn't make sense to you probably, but If I tell her she will go into how I'm so selfish and only care about myself and not her ailments. I don't know. I'm sorry for ranting. I'm just so confused on how to approach things with her
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Old 07-14-2012, 07:50 PM   #2
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i dont have a whole lot of advice but perhaps if the subject comes up, you could focus the conversation not on "dieting" but on health, and emphasize how healthy you are becoming, perhaps in medical terms that she may be familiar with due to her own medical issues...like how this way of eating will help your blood pressure or cholesterol or heart health etc....perhaps a conversation ahead of time about your own health would help, before you lose so much weight that she goes back to those habits with you...i'm not sure, just some ideas
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Old 07-14-2012, 09:00 PM   #3
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Did your mum ever get psychological support when she went through her breast cancer? It sounds like there is A LOT of stuff there that she either hasn't or isn't able to process on her own, and telling her that its going to be ok is understandably probably not going to cut the mustard for her, especially if she really does have hypochondriasis. Do you guys ever talk about her breast cancer these days? Sounds to me like her reaction to your weight loss is less about you and more about her.

If I were you, I would not talk to her about your weight loss, encourage her to talk to someone about her cancer if she wants to, and just support her as best you can- while taking care of yourself as well, even if that means limiting your time with her or the topics you are willing to discuss with her.
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Old 07-14-2012, 09:15 PM   #4
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Smile sounds like a tough spot to be in

I'm so sorry because I know it's difficult if you don't have support at home. I don't know if its good advice or not but i think i just wouldn't talk to her about it.
Continue to lose and keep your head focused but try not to discuss it. If she notices or confronts you about it just tell her the truth about why you didnt bring it up.

It's your bosy and only u can save your life. Sometimes people in our lives sabotage us and discourage us without meaning to. I'm sure your mama loves u but maybe its something in her own insecurity. perhaps she is afraid of how your weightloss could affect your relationship with her or something like that. It probably wouldn't hurt to reassure her.

goodluck hun!
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Old 07-14-2012, 09:40 PM   #5
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I feel for you. It's got to be difficult to try and juggle that kind of influence in your life and trying to change your lifestyle to a healthier one.

I think it might be best if you don't really bring it up with her, it's obviously something more to her than you just looking after yourself and losing weight. There is way more going on with this topic for her than you will probably ever understand.

If she starts to really notice the weight lose, shrug the comments off, casually mention that you've been trying to eat less junk or something like that, but don't make a big deal of it.

Your Mum obviously loves you, but something about weight lose (it might be about ANYONE'S weight lose and not just yours) seems to negatively impact her.

Just remember its not YOU that's making her act this way, its the fact that she isn't able to handle her own negative emotions about the situation.
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Old 07-14-2012, 09:47 PM   #6
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First off,

Is your mother overweight? My mom's on a different continent, but she's very overweight and has some health issues because of it which create a vicious cycle making it more difficult to lose. When we chat on Skype, she'll ask if I need anything. Occasionally I have to ask her to send things (like pantyhose...riding a bike while wearing them every day ends in lots of runs and holes and Japanese ones are built for slimmer builds and shorter legs than mine) and when she notices that I request smaller sizes, she tends to get quiet and say that she wishes she could lose weight.

Luckily my mother has never been as...well, unpleasant as yours has been, but she hasn't exactly been supportive either, probably because she's a little bit jealous. It's worse because I know that my method (low calorie, tons of exercise) wouldn't work for her because she has horrendous knees and would be in pain if she did the 2+ hours of biking and exercise videos I do every day.

If your mother is overweight, she might also be jealous of your progress. If not, maybe it's that she feels unattractive after losing her breasts and sees you working to become thinner (and therefore generally considered "more attractive") and is jealous over that. I'd like to second the opinion that you're not the actual cause of the issue, but rather a convenient whipping boy for some other trouble that your mother is having. I would try to avoid the subject as much as possible and if she gets in your face about it and starts the verbal abuse again, sit her down and have a talk about how your health is important to you. Point out that you can't become healthy alone and that it would mean a lot to have her support. She's your mother, you're her baby...I'm sure that if you put it out in simple terms like that, it will help her come to her senses and remember that fact.

Best of luck, and try to keep your chin up! Even if there are issues making your family less than supportive of your progress, know that there's a lot of people on here that are here for you.
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Old 07-14-2012, 10:30 PM   #7
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First off thank you all for advice. At this point any is helpful. I do know that my mom loves me and I love her. She has seen a counselor to help her through having cancer and we do talk about the cancer. I know how traumatic it was for her. She was so brave through it all. I was so scared for her and was there with her through it all as was my dad. She was a hero. Afterwards she was seeing a counselor, but then it just went down hill and she is so consumed with new illnesses and diseases that it's all she talks about. I just wish she would go back to being my old mom. I know that going through something like would change a person, but not this way. She is overweight so jealousy may be part of the issue. I just can't believe my mom would do that. It's been about three years since the cancer. Maybe she just needs more time?
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Old 07-15-2012, 10:27 AM   #8
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Last year my friend admitted she was addicted to pain meds and went into rehab. After she returned home, her mother kept on visiting her with a packet full of pills. It took both Mom and Daughter a long time to realise that they were in a "bad relationship". fortunately my friend had other support around her to help her deal with her mom. They set new ground rules and now 10 months done the line are starting to understand each other again.

It is tough when it's your mom, but you are both adult women, with your own lives and own issues to deal with. Try and think of her as a friend, if your friend behaved like that, what would you do?

Look after yourself first. Only then will you have the strength to help look after others.

One of the Mantra's that I like is: You didn't cause it, You can't control it and you cant Cure it.
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Old 07-15-2012, 09:27 PM   #9
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I think its great that you are getting back on track in spite of your mothers reactions the first time around.
As for this time, you may need to keep the weight loss talk to a minimum. If jealousy is truly a factor then I honestly believe that really there is not much you can do. Even from personal experience in times I was jealous I had to come to terms with it on my own, there was not anything someone could say to me to change it. I had to deal with it, like an adult.
It sounds like she did have support and love to lift her up, on top a counselor while she dealt with her cancer. She may need those same things regarding her hypochondria as well. I would try to encourage her to seek that help. If she is sensitive about it that would suggest to me that she knows it is an issue. It is probably a daily struggle, and maybe she is hoping someone will suggest help for her, if she is to afraid to just out loud ask for it.
I think you should keep working on you, you have to live with your choices regarding health later on. So I would keep striving. If anyone asks, make it about health. I don't think people can argue against the importance of heart health, better numbers etc. I hope it works out for you and your family. -Dancing.
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Old 07-16-2012, 09:41 AM   #10
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I don't know if this would help you mom or not with her hypochondria thinking -- but perhaps see if there's a chapter and if she'd go?

http://www.lowselfhelpsystems.org/

But even if she doesn't, it is your body and your life. Don't wave it around in her face that you are dieting if you think there's some jealousy there because she is overweight. But don't NOT get on with it if it is something you want to do for yourself.

GL!
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Old 07-22-2012, 11:35 PM   #11
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Write a letter. Air out EVERYTHING. You either run the risk of you never getting a chance to speak with your mother over something SHE can't get over, or you write something that leads to something you can't discuss once she has had a chance to think.

My mother and I did this many years ago after a suggestion from a physchologist she had made me go to due to some "depressive behavior." My mother is quite dramatic and her and I were going through a very typical teenage angst period of time.

I aired out all of my feelings in a letter. If I could rewrite it I would add in sentences like, "Please read this letter with an open mind, please do not see this as an attack but me having to write a letter instead of actually speak with you for fear of your reaction (due to previous experiences). Please take time to think of what I have written here and know that my objective is not to hurt you. I encourage you to initiate questions and your concerns with a level mind."

Our letters to each other helped immensely and I still believe is one of the only reasons we have a relationship to this day.
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