Formerly supportive daughter has turned against me

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by barbaradh, Nov 3, 2006.

  1. barbaradh

    barbaradh New Member

    I am so depressed, confused, frustrated, and angry right now that I don't know what to do. I have FMS/CFS and have had for years - I became disabled with it and unable to work in 2001. My daughter (31) has always been more like a friend to me, and thru everything has always been very supportive and helpful, loving and understanding, etc.

    I went thru a severe depression last Fall (we were preparing to move to a new house in another state, and were in the middle of selling our existing home). I went into a very bad flare-up after spending two weeks preparing our house to be put on the market. The flare-up just wouldn't go away, and I ended up in a bad depression. Ever since then, the way my daughter relates to me has changed to where now she talks to me like I'm a child, or crazy, or both. Aside from that, we get along very well and may disagree with each other at times, but we haven't had an fight since she was a teenager.

    Four weeks ago over the phone I was telling her about something insensitive my husband (her father) had said to me concerning my health - I wasn't angry, just irritated. She suddenly turned on me, and for the next 20 minutes proceeded to unload on me just how angry she was at me. First she was angry that I spend what she considers to be too much time in bed (with the CFS I sleep about 18 hours a day). Then she got angry because on a "good" day I did some light cleaning and ran a couple of errands. She thought I should have stayed in bed. I could go on, but suffice it to say that I ended up very confused and in tears. I spent the next 3 1/2 weeks trying to figure out what had happened.

    She called me again this past Monday, and I calmly told her that I very much appreciated everything that she and the family had done and was continuing to do for me, and that I was sorry for all that she and the rest of our family were going thru due to my illness, but that I would not apologize for BEING ill - that it wasn't my fault and certainly not my choice. I told her that I was afraid that I had put an unfair burden on her thru the years by telling her so much of what I was going thru, and thus probably making her feel like she had to find the solutions for me, and that I was sorry I had done that, and that I would not do it to her anymore. Well, that enraged her. She accused me of now planning to hide things from her. She then proceeded to bring up things that had happened years ago, some things I couldn't even remember, much less remember details of the events. She was questioning me and demanding answers like I was on the witness stand. She accused me of being suicidal last Fall (I wasn't) and still thinks I should have been hospitalized (I was under the care of a licensed, board-certified Psychiatrist who I know would have hospitalized me if she felt I needed it). She suddenly thinks she knows more than my doctors do, because she does research on the Internet. But the crowning blow was when she said that she thinks that I use my illness (FMS/CFS) as an excuse a lot of the time. I was too shocked to ask her for examples.

    I don't know what's going on, and I don't know how to handle this. I don't do well with my illness once the weather turns cold, so I'm already not at my best. I'm depressed, I feel guilty (although I don't know why), and I feel like a burden to my family all over again, something that I have wrestled with for quite some time and had finally come to terms with over the Summer. She lives about six hundred miles away and is not coming home for the holidays this year, so at least I won't have to face her at what is already a stressful time of the year.

    I don't know if something is happening to her (she wouldn't answer questions about herself - she accused me of trying to change the subject so I wouldn't have to answer her questions), or if this is an anger towards me that has been building for some time, and it's just now come out. I would call my son-in-law and ask him, but that would REALLY make her mad.

    I'm sorry this is so long, but does anyone out there have any words of wisdom? This all seems like a bad nightmare, and I'm so scared that I'm going to fall into another bad depression because of this, and I just don't know if I could go thru that again.

    Thanking you in advance,
  2. maedaze

    maedaze New Member

    I am soo sorry you are going through this with your daughter. I am sorry I havn't got the words of wisdom you are looking for, my head is just not working at the moment.
    But wanted to let you know you are in my prayers and please don't let this affect your health..

    Yes I know it's easier said than done. But it sounds like your daughter is going through something and it seems to be human nature to take it out on the ones that we love first..

    Eventually you will find out what is going on with her but in the meantime please look after yourself..

    Hugs maedaze
  3. quilp

    quilp New Member

    I think that we might underestimate the extent to which our illness affects those around us. We are so consumed with trying to get through life one day at a time, sometimes one hour at a time using what little energy we have, that perhaps we aren't aware of the feelings of those close to us who love us. They feel helpless, watch us suffer for days, months, years at a time with no visible signs of improvement. Perhaps years of anguish, sorrow, comes out in a tirade of anger.
    My advice is to wait for a response for several days; give both of you pause for thought; if no response is forthcoming perhaps you could write your daughter a letter, explaining exactly how you feel, but also addressing what you think she might be feeling. I honestly don't believe it is possible to describe this illness in words. Only by having the illness do you truly begin to realise just how terrible it really is.
    Good luck Mark

    Just one final point. I don't believe that one 20 minute tirade of anger constitutes 'turning against you'. You can't eradicate all that love, empathy and happiness shared between you both over many years xxx
  4. monamea

    monamea New Member

    Dear Barbardh, yes I know what you are going through and I feel so bad that you have to go through that, I have two daughters and they both think that I am lazy. What they don't know is I'm up at 3:eek:oa.m. every morning and do alot of work from 3 - 10:00, thats my good time and than it's on the couch with my legs up til supper has to be made. My one daughter never calls and seldom comes over (not sure what I did) she never brings the Grand Kids over, the other one is real busy and thinks that I dwell on being sick to much and that I should throw all meds. out and get moving. It's good that she is at least calling, it could have been a bad day and she was just venting. If they only knew how much that hurts us. She may be pushing you away, but you should push back and let her know that you love her anyway. Some day she will open up and want you to tell her about what you have and ask questions, til that time, hold on to your hat it may be a bumpy road. Hope this helps. Monamea
  5. 143alan

    143alan New Member

    I'm sorry you're going through this stress in your life. I know how it makes us feel even worse than we already do, because of how it affects our bodies.

    I don't really know how to say this without sounding creepy or weird but I sincerely feel like there is something going on with your daughter. She loves you tremendously and her anger may be because this condition has stolen you from her and she needs you so it comes out as frustration and anger instead of love and compassion.

    I don't know if that makes any sense but I felt compelled to share it with you
    Take Care Sweetie
  6. Bruin63

    Bruin63 Member

    For almost 9years I thought we got along great, I was very Proud of her, even tho she had some Ideas, that are different than mine, I never said a thing to her.

    Well apparently, she did have some Bad feelings towards me, but never said a thing, till we had a Family Crisis.

    Her and my Son are Fostering a Niece of mine, (his 2nd Cousin) She's 7 and quite the diva.
    She has a tendcy to tell Fibs.

    SHe told DIL one, and instead of asking me if it was true or not, She jumped all over me, and was so Rude, that I wrote her back, telling her, that maybe she could talk that way to Her mom, but not to me.

    First place, she only e-mails, and we all know how easy it is to take things wrong, and things can get out of hand.

    That was back in May, I haven't talked to her since, she wants no part of me, or my Horrible family.
    She doesn't even know them, so I don't know how she can say that.

    My Newphew, who's dtr. they are caring for is a BUM, and yet she things that I support Hime over My Son and her.

    I did so much that I made my Health worse, so I wasn't able to do as much, and that is when Her attutide changed.

    I never would have thought she was that kind of Person.
    So I don't see my SOn much, now, even tho she Swore, she would not, come between my Son and I.

    She wrote me that she is Uncomfortable, talking about my Weird Illness's. I mainly would talk about it to explain Why I couldn't do something.

    I had even warned her, when they took our little Niece, that I couldn't be Counted on anything in the afternoon's.
    That I may not be able to see them much during the Flu and Cold season's.

    Anyway, I'm just so Hurt, that she has turned on me.
    I really did Love her, but now I will have to keep a Wall up, she is what I call a Toxic Person now, and I cannot
    be around her.

    This will probably make the Holidays lousy, but I am not going to let it get to me.

    I'm decorating anyway, ;o)

    It's awful how People we Love, can be so insensitive, but then, again, she may still come around,

    I know how Upsetting this is for you, and the Deep hurt that a Child can give us. I hope things will work out for you.

    Theres Always Hope,
  7. fairydust39

    fairydust39 New Member

    Hi Barbara,So sorry that you too had to be abused by your family! I have the same thing going on in my family,as others on the board,is going thru this also.

    I just pray and ask God for his help b/c that's the only thing that does any good. Just have a Wonderful Holiday in spite of, your families rudeness. That's exactly what I am going to do. Sometimes it's a good idea to just ignore them and when they are ready to see you they will be around.

    I think that sometimes the family really don't want to be around us,so they pick a fight and that gives them an excuse to not come around.Just do your own thing and don't try to placate them.Let them come to you!
    Hugs Shirley
  8. NyroFan

    NyroFan New Member


    Good for you, standing up for your rights. Yes, she must have been so upsetting for you with her anger.

    You know, the anger might have very little to do with you.
    She might have something going on in her life and will strike out wherever she can.

    I am not saying that is the case, but since she has been so supportive in the past, this change-up seems suspicious.

    My suggestion (for what it is worth): ignore her for a while, forget about what she said and wait for her to call you. I would not greet her so warmly either.

    She may get the message that you are not pleased and will straighten up and treat you as the very ill person that you, and most of us are.

    You rest. You have enough to take care of. I would get rid of that stress as soon as possible. It will only eat at you.

    And good for you, taking the time to let it all out here.
    Your load is surely lightened.

  9. Callum

    Callum New Member

    I'm so sorry that you have had this vital source of support withdraw from you.

    I can only hope that she is going through her own grieving process. It is very hard for a child when they see their parents (who are supposed to always be there for them, right?) become so vulnerable. A lot of anger is created, and unfortunately, without therapy, the anger is turned on the person who needs support.

    I went through this recently with my mother, who has ALWAYS suffered from depression. The past couple years, she almost ceased to function, and although I'd always known she had an issue with depression, I was obtuse, and missed the signs that it had become deep depression. I got angry with her; frustrated with her. Grew short with her on the phone.

    And then, I realized what was happening. I stopped resenting her for not being perfect. I viewed or shared humanity. I helped her get into this program that assists seniors who are dealing with depression through cognitive-behavioral therapy, group therapy and such (all medicare covered), and started calling her every day, just to tell her that I loved her and how I understood the difficulty she was going through. And to apologize for my selfishness.

    Now, we talk on the phone every day, and she is a changed woman. A big part of that is, because now she knows, even when she has a really bad day, I will not judge her and I will be there for her to give her what she needs.

    It's a process for both when a parent is ill. Your daughter was close to you before, and after she grieves a while, and sees how selfish she is acting, I believe she will come back around.

    For your sake, I believe she will come back around.


    ps: My speaking of my mother's depression IN NO WAY tries to equate depression with our DD. It was just another example of a health struggle.
  10. Marta608

    Marta608 Member

    Hello, Barbara -

    First of all, I'm so sorry for this added pain in your life. Our heads are clogged with enough guilt without anyone having to add to the pile.

    But as you suggest I suspect that there's something going on in your daugher's life - even something that she's not completely aware of yet - and she wants her Mommy.* Problem is, her Mommy is sick. Because the part of her that wants Mommy is the little girl inside all us women, she's reacting to you like a child.

    You may be sick but you're still The Mom. Treat her words for what they are: symptoms of her pain. You might even examine your lifestyle (could you need more help with depression than you're getting? are you really doing as much as you can or is the depression and discouragment holding you back?).

    Give it time - keep your heart open, your mouth shut and your guilt under control and I think you'll learn what the problem really is for your daughter.

    Best of luck,
    *PS. Her father is still her father. I wouldn't criticize him to her if I were you. I'm happy that you've been close but she isn't your best friend, she's your child and your husband's child too as long as you live. Hugs, m[This Message was Edited on 11/04/2006]
  11. sascha

    sascha Member

    do you think your daughter might go to a counseling session with you? i know she lives far away, but maybe she could come and stay for a bit. if there were a third party present maybe she could be guided into discussing everything on her mind. and you would be encouraging this, assuring her that you love and value her so much and want everything clear and clean between you. maybe it would open up a good dialogue..

    hard for me to say, of course. i only know how i'd feel if i were in that postion with my sons. (OWWW)

    and in the meantime, take very good care of yourself. the very best you can manage. and keep the channels wide open between you and your daughter, send positive thoughts and unconditional love her way. and i believee this should resolve itself over time. best of luck to you and your daughter- Sascha
  12. mollystwin

    mollystwin New Member

    I'm sorry that both of you have to go through this with your daughters and DIL. I think almost all of us have to deal with these kinds of issues at some level, but both of you have to deal with it with people who you thought were previously supportive and with family members that are very close.

    I think that in both of your cases these two women have issues in thier own lives that they need to worked out. They may not even realize that they have any issues. They both seem angry that you are ill and that's not fair. I hope that both come to thier senses and realize that they are being unfair.
  13. wish_to_be_healthy

    wish_to_be_healthy New Member


    I'm sorry that this is happening to you.

    I think what Callum, and Marta posted makes alot of sense.

    It does sound like your daughter wants her "mommy"...and is reacting like a girl, because that is where her pain is coming from.

    I hope that she can figure out what she is feeling...and that you both can work it the right time.

  14. Dorymarie

    Dorymarie New Member

    Hi Barbara,
    Very sorry to hear about the issue between your daughter and you. I can well relate because Iam going through a simliar situation with my adult son who lives locally. He just doesn't want to 'hear it' or 'see it' anymore of Fibro, etc. This is very hard on me emotionally since he's my only child and Iam widowed 9 yrs. It hurts because as mothers we were 'there' for our children since birth and now in our time of need, they don't have a ounce of tolerance. All we can do is keep praying and hoping they will have a change of heart. Gentle Hugs, Dorymarie
  15. barbaradh

    barbaradh New Member

    To maedaze: thanks for your kind words and your prayers. I think you are right - that she may be going thru something totally unrelated to me right now.

    To quilp: I think most of us are pretty in tune with how much our illness affects those around us. The more common problem for us is non-stop guilt, and feeling like we are a burden to our families.

    To monamea: I'm so sorry for what YOU are going thru. It's amazing how quickly some people become self-appointed authorities on our illness, and have the arrogance to think that we should do what they suggest over what our doctors are telling us. If they could just spend one day in our shoes, maybe they wouldn't be so quick to judge. Thanks for your help.

    To LOVED: my depression was last Fall, not this Summer, so it's been a year now. We visited in the Spring and she saw that I was okay then, plus my husband has told her numerous times that I am not in a depression anymore. I think this may have very little to do with me, and more to do with issues that she needs to resolve, because everything was fine up until four weeks ago.

    To manager: thanks for your kind words and for your support, and I agree with you that there might be something going on with my daughter. What you said made a lot of sense.

    To Bruin63: I'm so sorry for what you are going thru, and I appreciate your support and kind words. I hope your situation gets better.

    To fairydust39, nyrofan, and Babs41: thanks to all of you for your support and kind words of encouragement. You all make good points and I appreciate you taking the time to help me.

    To callum: I went thru something very similar with my mother as well. She was sick for as long as I could remember, and towards me was physically and mentally abusive throughout my childhood. When I was in my 20's, I suffered my first depression. I was put on medication, and immediately started into therapy. Thru my therapy, I came to realize that my mother was suffering from depression. It took some time, but I finally convinced her to see a doctor, and sure enough, she was diagnosed with depression and put on medication immediately. As soon as I saw that she had been sick, I knew the things that she had done to me were because of the depression and that it wasn't her fault. I was able to forgive her and we have been very close ever since.

    To marta608: I agree that there is probably something going on in my daughter's life that I am not aware of. As far as my depression is concerned - I'm upset right now but not "clinically depressed." We throw that word around too much, when most of the time we are just really sad about whatever has happened. I am on antidepressants and they are still working for me. What is holding me back in my life is the fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. I was actually doing very well physically and emotionally until her phone calls.

    To sascha: it would be impossible for her to visit right now due to the demands in HER life - trust me.

    To mollystwin: thank you for you kind words of understanding and for your support. You really hit the nail on the head.

    To wish_to_be_healthy: thanks for your support and for taking the time to respond.

    I appreciate so much everyones help. It really means a lot to me, and I thank you all so much for taking the time to help me with this problem. You are all in my thoughts and prayers!

    With much appreciation,
  16. barbaradh

    barbaradh New Member

    Thanks for telling me of your experiences. I guess when family turns against us there's a tendency to think that we are all alone, and obviously that is not the case. I hope things get better for you both. I feel certain that I will eventually get to the bottom of what is really going on with my daughter.

    Thanks for taking the time to write and help me out with my situation.

    Take care,
  17. bunnyfluff

    bunnyfluff Member

    I am so sorry for this added pain for you.

    I did an extensive anger study, and it is always a secondary emotion- meaning that it is a reaction to the primary emotion, such as fear, feeling of loss or rejection, hurt, etc., that we all feel and cannot cope with or express in some other way easily.

    Our DD has such an impact on those around us, I'm sure it frightens them to see us go into a flare and be so very ill, and it frustrates them to no end to not be able to help. Think about this, how angry we get having to be trapped in these stupid bodies, and how those we love just want to be able to be there for us, and how hard it is for them to not be able to make it okay.

    I hope this helps in some small way.
  18. johnston

    johnston New Member

    was also named Barbara. She was a dear, patient soul; but sick all my life. I ended up being her caretaker around the age of 9 or earlier. I also became the housekeeper, cook, grocery shopper, etc. In the end, was was when I was about 9mo pregnant sleeping on a cot by her hospital bed, after yet another surgery, and having to put HER on a bedpan: I thought, this is it! I am not doing this anymore. I withdrew. I did not try to be ugly to my mom. I know I wasn't considerate anymore. And I did not believe she was physically ill.

    NOW, that I have had to admit and concede that I have FM, I believe that is what she had as well. NO wonder she jumped on every offered surgery as a chance to feel better. She didn't even have a label to call what she had!?!?!?! I wish I could take those years back. I wish I could visit her more often. I wish I could tell her I understand. I wish I could tell her, I know NOW Mom, and I am so very sorry. My mom died about 7 years ago now. I tell her everyday. I talked to her in Heaven and pray she hears!

    (Unfortunately, I emulated (correct wording?)/copied somewhat my father's own poor tx of my mom. He did not believe she was sick and being proud southern male, never lifted his finger to help in any way.....Point is, like everyone else, your daughter cannot know what you are going through--unless, God Forbid, she ever goes through it herself...

    A volcanoe of years of repressed anger and resentment may have eroded. You might have mentioned a friend you were close to. I know for me, I got very jealous when my mother was in an inpt tx and mentioned a young man who called her "mom". I was very angry. I told her "YOU have your own children!!" I felt left out as a child and felt robbed of my childhood, yet here was this adult male coming along and taking the "good stuff"--my mom's patience and advice.....without ever having to do the work.

    Finally, you have no control over your daughter's actions; only YOUR reactions to them. She cannot make you angry, sad, or anything else. You choose how you react. Continue to let her know you love her; that you miss the way things were between you. I wonder if there are support groups for families of FM/CFS sufferers? I only know you have to be you. You have to take care of you. Be true to yourself. It is you that looks back at you in the mirror.

    When you do all you can do, that is all you can do. Don't try to fix things that you cannot fix. Only your daughter has control of her actions, and it sounds as though she has access to info about these conditions. Might help her to read the misery of others on some of the message boards. Maybe just to see that it is not just her mom/you.

    Hope this helps. Rhonda
  19. sixtyslady

    sixtyslady Member

    I've been through this with my girls twice now the 1st time was in 1994, thats when I first became sick.
    my oldest daughter told everyone I was doing it for attention,so she didn"t come near me for a year.
    so I guess that she thought that made me snap out of it.and for along time I just hid my sickness.
    then last year I had a major relapse and I could't hide it from them , so once again they all didn"t come near me for months.
    things are pretty strained between us and I"ve never got over the hurt,you will always love them because their your children.
    but I know in my heart that when it comes to my health II"m on my own.all they think about is what I can do for them and if I"m not well enough to run after their needs than they don"t want to be bother.
    I worked to hard for them when they where kids and never had my own life, in turn thats the only way they see me. I"m not a real person to them or do not have any feelings.
    I"ve got beyond it through prayer.
    but I wonder whats going to happen when I"m noy here anymore to listen to all their crisis.

  20. jodboga

    jodboga New Member

    I think the situation is because your daughter is afraid , afraid of what this disease is doing to you , afraid of losing you . Maybe afraid that you will shut her out . My mom has congestive heart failure , broken back in 3 places , kidney stone , osteo arthritis , diabetes and so on . Last summer she lay near death , I brought her to my home and took care of her for seven months . My mom is now at her own home with a fulltime nurse . My sisters do not understand how she went downhill so fast wasnt fast she just hid things from them . It is hard on me to see my mom like this but no matter what ...I have a lot of patience with her, you see no matter what I love mom . But my one sister has not talked to my mom since June of this past year . It hurts my mom terribly , my sister is shutting everyone out and I think because she cant handle see our mom like this . I pray for the best for you and your daughter .

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