I visited my 86 years old mother on Thursday and we had a little “chat.” It wasn’t long before she went off into her judgmental rant in a scathing and berating attack of her three year old great granddaughter. When I tried to talk to her saying that she was only three years old and had no idea of what you were talking about and why, and that what she was doing was in innocence, she came back with, “All that didn’t matter, she should know better.” She then went on to say that she was only joking, but then a few sentences later, she said that she meant what she said as it was the truth. I asked her what it was, a joke or the truth, it can’t be both.
I knew I couldn’t get her to see past her judgmental point of view and as she went on, I noticed that the tools she used to try to get what she wants and to be in control are the use of veiled threats, (while appearing to be nice – being Christian) bribery and cohesion, oh poor me, and withdrawing, to in attempt to punish others for their actions.
When she finished with that rant she then flipped to other judgments and when I called her on them and mentioned her strong “born again” Christian beliefs that she wasn’t following. She went off into her “oh poor me” song and dance, and then into her self-hatred mode saying that nothing she does or says is good enough and stated that she wasn’t going to visit or say anything anymore and that she just wanted to die and be with the Lord.
I told her that she has been using that “I just want to die” line all her life. With that she went into an attack and quilting mode, telling me that I didn’t understand and that I was not a loving son to say such a thing.
When I told her that I didn’t hate her for all the things that she did, or didn’t do when I was a child, but that I thanked her for helping me experience the things I needed to heal, that I love her, but not in the way she loves me. After that she went back into her “oh poor me,” mode and started the cycle all over again, but this time I just let her rant. When she noticed that she wasn’t getting a rise out of me, she said, I can’t talk with you anymore as you don’t understand. I said, “Yes, I understand, but I don’t agree with you and that is where we are different.” I tried to get her to talk of my early child hood and hers, but she wasn’t very forthcoming and so I let her talk about what she wanted to talk about.