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Advice Please

Nattymat

Nattymat

Member
Joined
Sep 20, 2020
Messages
6
Location
United Kingdom
Hi, I'm new to this forum!

I really need some advice!

My mum, while not being diagnosed, almost certainly has BPD (My therapist even suggested it when talking about her to them). Obviously this caused a lot of issues throughout my life. I love her dearly, but there are issues in my relationship with her. One of those issues is struggling to be honest with her, because when I am I receive a LOT of backlash and it makes her really unstable and aggressive.

I had an abortion a year ago and not dealt with it well. I never told my mother despite really wanting to at the time. I feel unable to tell her now because a big part of me is concerned she will take me not telling her initially as a "I don't trust you with that information" and then think she's a terrible mother and she'll have another breakdown. I'm worried she may stop talking to me or suddenly hate my boyfriend (Who is lovely and was very supportive through the ordeal but she may not see that). She already has issues with my sister's boyfriend (Without any justifiable reason) and I don't want the same with mine.

I found out today through my sister that my mother has had past abortions and it really makes me want to open up to her about it, but again, I am terribly concerned she'll have a bad reaction. I really don't know what to do.

Thanks

Nattymat <3
 
Prince of Cinders

Prince of Cinders

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Joined
Sep 12, 2020
Messages
136
Location
Suffolk, VA
I saw this several hours ago, and hesitated to respond to it. However, I didn't want it to sit here unanswered, because that doesn't give you the requested input.

First, welcome to the forums.

Second, I'm not going to base my opinion on anything regarding your abortion going forward, unless you respond that you wish to discuss it. I will say that as someone who is pro-life, I'm sorry you felt that was the path to take, but that i'm not judging you in a negative light as a result of it. If it's a decision you're struggling with, then I'd say it's something else for you perhaps speak to a someone (be it a professional, clergy, etc) about, and I'll leave it at that with no negative comments.

As someone who struggles with BPD, I can tell you that it's tough to take criticism and even positive constructive comments at times. This can be a problem, especially when I have a *very* staunch policy about not lying to me. If I feel they've hidden their views or whatnot, then it makes me feel that their evasion is dishonest, even when it's not. Sometimes, people phrase what they're saying in what comes across as an accusatory manner, and that tends to not go well. There are even times in the past when people came to me out of genuine concern for my well being, and by the end of the conversation, I was boiling over with anger that stemmed from seething hatred of myself for being too weak or stupid, because I saw myself (as i very much do these days) as a giant piece of human garbage that didn't deserve to breathe the same air, much less have them care for me at all.

This, thankfully, isn't always the case. I often tell people I invite constructive advice, but also try to wave it away when I know i'm having a bad day. It can be a bit to juggle at times.

My opinion on what to do would be something of a guess, since I don't know enough detail to really give in depth advice. Given that, I personally feel that it would be best to try and talk to her directly about what's wrong between you and her, to tell her about events in your life, and see if you can find comfortable middle ground. I don't pretend that will be easy, or that it will all go perfectly fine with no problems. She may yet take things in the worst way, and this may cause more problems than it solves...though i hope that's not the case.

That being said, i think at the end of the day, the best course of action is to try and have a conversation with her in the calmest, most productive way possible. If you keep it from her, she might think you've been trying to lie to her, and she may yet think that way even when you do say something. However, she won't be able to hold it against you for not having told her at all, should she find out through some other means. If possible, it might also be worth talking to a professional first to see if they recommend anything specific, since i'm not getting the impression that she's willing or able to seek help.

Please feel free to post here if you need to, and i pray you're able to have a productive conversation. I wish you the best in this endeavor.
 
Delilah67

Delilah67

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Joined
Jul 25, 2020
Messages
109
Location
Herefordshire
Tbh it can be difficult to discuss TOP with your mum wether she has bpd or not. Some people have great difficulty with the subject as Prince of Cinders says.
I was a midwife for 15 years and working with women opened up my views on TOP and I can honestly say it was an incredibly difficult decision for most women.
you need to consider what you will get from telling her? If you are worried about a negative reaction then don’t tell her at this point in time.
I think it’s natural to want support from your mum but I’d seek it from a more loving source.
It may be you can tell her in the future, talk to a counsellor meanwhile .
 
Blooming

Blooming

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Apr 15, 2020
Messages
268
Location
mycountry
Hi and welcome! :) I think this is a boundary problem. We need to know what is appropriate to talk about to different people. If you have a boss at work or perhaps a teacher at school, it would not be appropriate, as you know. If you have a therapist it would be appropriate, as you know as well. To some close friends it may perhaps be appropriate, with others not. When we grow up, our parents are not supposed to be our closest friends.

Small children are so attached to their parent, that they do not realize that there is a boundary between their mother (parent), between "me and not-me". As the child grows it will not tell everything to mummy. It will have some secrets and that s OK. The boundaries between child and parent is developing.

So where are you in your boundary process to your mother? How far have you come from her emotionally? With that I mean to point at that it is a long time since you were in the "mother and me is one person" stage. We can love our parents, but not share everything with them. That is a normal development between mother and child. It has nothing to do with if she is borderline or not. It is just a normal process in becoming an adult.

Can you keep the secret for yourself? Is your boundary toward your mother strong enough for that, or do you nee to develop such a boundary. If so, how do you develop such a boundary?

Do you want her support? What will happen if she will not give you that support? What will you feel?

Done is done and you cannot reverse that. If your regret or feel sorry for the abortion, I think the best you can do is to visit the not full borne baby's grave or make a place that is yours, beneath a tree, close to the sea, or where you find it peaceful. There you can tell your baby about your feelings and there you can bring flowers.

Please continue to talk to your therapist about this!

I will give you a line about boundaries. And please know, parents do seldom change (that is my experience). :hug:


PS. I don't know your age. You can be 17 or in your 20-ies.
 
AlwaysinCrown

AlwaysinCrown

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Joined
Aug 14, 2020
Messages
1,310
Location
Poland
I'm not sure if your mother's a conservative pro-lifer or liberal person. If she's try to talk to her in neutral place and explain your decision. It was your choice, so don't feel blamed if your mom will tell sth bad on you.
 
Nattymat

Nattymat

Member
Joined
Sep 20, 2020
Messages
6
Location
United Kingdom
Hi, thank you all for the kind words x

In regards to the abortion I did end up going to see a therapist that specialised in pregnancy and pregnancy loss because afterwards I felt like I was going insane. It was actually how I came to understand that my mother had BPD and that I had way more problems than I actually realised I had.

My dad, unfortunately, decided to give me a rant as he often would about how young mothers were a waste of potential and resources to the government and that "You will never be like them. You're better than that. While they're pushing prams around, you'll actually be successful." literally HOURS after I first found out I was pregnant (He didn't know I was pregnant), so I panicked, stuck my fingers in my ears, and pretended I didn't have feelings or dare think about what I wanted pretty early on. That is my typical reaction to stressful situations :( Even my therapist stated "Do you ever do what YOU want to do?" and I was sat there like "....Nope....".
A few months after the abortion my mum told me she couldn't wait to be a grandmother one day and that comment has really lingered in my brain.


Obviously I can't change that now. It's happened, but it's so hard to judge the kind of reaction I'm going to receive from my mum, especially knowing that she WANTS to be a grandmother, and I have taken that from her without her knowledge. That and the fact she routinely told me "If you get pregnant, please do tell me.". I love her, and I know she loves me but her reactions to small things can be pretty intense, I hate to imagine what her reaction to this would be. Not only that, but my sister and brother still live at home. I fear it might make it harder for them too if mum had a breakdown. However, mum has been getting better over the years, so maybe it won't be as bad as I picture. I really don't know.

I could go to the grave with this secret and likely will, but the guilt of not telling my mother about this is really hard to cope with. Every time I look at her I imagine her with my potential child. And I can't cry about it. I can't talk to her about it. I just have to deal with it and pretend I'm happy (Which is completely unhealthy). I want to be able to feel vulnerable around her and express my own needs, but she has a tendency to take me also having needs (like all humans do) as minimising her own problems, which then turns into an "You don't give a s**t about me, you never have!" yelling explosion and with her storming out the house or ignoring me. And that's a typical reaction from me just being tearful when she's yelling at me. So you can imagine how bad a reaction that this secret could be :(

It's just such a tricky situation :(



P.s. I'm 22 :)
 
AlwaysinCrown

AlwaysinCrown

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Messages
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Poland
I think your problem with abortion is more connected with your mother's reactions and expectation. If you didn't feel to be a mother, it was your choice. You'd better become pregnant if you find a right person and feel ready for motherhood.
 
Delilah67

Delilah67

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Joined
Jul 25, 2020
Messages
109
Location
Herefordshire
Please be kind to yourself, accept the decision was made and nothing can change that. Try not to put expectations upon yourself ( should/ shouldn’ts etc) , you will process this in your own time.
You are 22 yrs old and have lots of time have children, so try not to worry about your mum missing out on a grandchild.
You’ve been through a tough time and I wish I could give you a big motherly hug and make you feel loved . Xxx
 
Blooming

Blooming

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Apr 15, 2020
Messages
268
Location
mycountry
especially knowing that she WANTS to be a grandmother, and I have taken that from her without her knowledge.
Dear Nattymat, you are not your mother's "baby maker machine"! Sorry, but it had to be pointed at! :hug:

The way you describe your family (especially you mother) probably means that your family is not a really healthy one and that you yourself have scars after growing up inside that family. It is not about love or not love. Often very inhibiting expressions are called love, but are not.

We are all born with the a strong need for love and we can die without it. Unfortunately not everyone is capable of giving love fully from their heart. You have probably got the best love your mother was able to give you, but that does not mean that you got a 100% healthy form of love.

I can see that you are a kind person. You don't want to do anything that can upset your siblings. That's good!

What I want to point out for you, however, is that you have to be aware of that if your mother is borderline, you have probably some "cracks" in your own personality. Let them be healed through therapy before you think more about making babies.

You have to take your grief of the lost baby seriously (visiting a grave or another peaceful place many times). But please understand that becoming pregnant, now, probably is not good for you. A baby is totally dependent on you and need a healthy mother. Please wait with making babies until you have become more mature. We all grow in our whole lifetime. You are 22 and the whole grown up life is in front of you. Some years form now you have probably learned enough to know when you can visit your mother with a baby and when it is wise to stay in your own home with your baby. You have learned more about boundaries.

Please let this episode with the abortion, that has led you into therapy, be the episode that makes you a real grown up. Continue to see your therapist. (There you can learn how to relate to your mother as well).

Do you have any education, if not, can you get one (at school, Uni or inside your workplace)? Do you have hobbies? Please use your "Wise Mind" to grow in this situation.

"Wise Mind" is part of DBT training for Borderline. It is used in CBT as well.

Link to Wise Mind:


Lots of {{{hugs}}} for you and you situation! :hug1:
 
Nattymat

Nattymat

Member
Joined
Sep 20, 2020
Messages
6
Location
United Kingdom
Hi, sorry for taking so long to respond, but thanks for all your lovely messages! :)

I do sometimes have issues in understanding what I want vs what my mother (and others in general) wants. I only really began to develop my sense of self when I left home for university so I only have about 4 years of personal development away from my mother. Maybe the abortion has made this more obvious to me which is why I am so guilt ridden and confused. I don't know.

I can agree that I have cracks in my personality - I noticed I have picked up a few traits from my mum and I believe I was very close to developing BPD myself during my teens. A bad incident at 15/16yrs old made me realise "...I'm becoming my mother and do I want that for myself?". I am largely recovered now though I do experience bpd related problems now and then which I am working hard to improve on. This was actually one of the things my therapist brought up - focus on yourself before a baby. This is one of the few things that helps me to cope with my decision.

I just wish that I could be open with my mother. It's hard her not knowing, especially with how much I care for her and value her and how desperately I want to confide in her. I don't have extended family to talk to about this and it's hard to bring it up to friends. It's like I just have to accept all the horrible things that happen and just let the grief fester inside until it goes. That or risk my mum ignoring me/yelling/breaking down and then not even acknowledge what I brought up/said. It's hard. It's hard to grieve when nobody shares or acknowledges your pain. My gran and pet cat died a few months before I fell pregnant so I never really had the opportunity to properly process that grief either before the abortion. My mum went from "You can talk to me about your gran - she was your family and I understand if you're upset." to "Thank God that b***h is finally dead. Spiteful b***h of a woman.". How can I express my grief when I hear that? :( Last year really sucked.

Just got to look forward to the future and future motherhood. Keep moving forward x

@Blooming I enjoy swimming, dressmaking and art in my spare time. Plan on buying a sewing machine this month to get back into it again :)

Thanks again for your lovely responses. :thanks:
 
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