How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Anna Your Own Question

Anna
Anna, Mental Health Professional
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 1945
Experience:  Licensed Clinical Social Worker with 29 years in addictions and mental health.
Type Your Mental Health Question Here...
Anna is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I come from a dysfunctional home with psychological issues

Resolved Question:

ADDED: Got to go for 20 mins.Please wait....I've been waiting & will come back & wait again


I come from a dysfunctional home with psychological issues & abuse & my fatherwas a chronic, "coping" alcoholic. I'd say my Mother is BPD.I am the oldest of 5 children & whome I parented a lot.I am a psychologist/therapist.My now deceased father got my only brother, for sexist reasons,enduring power of attorney over our 87 yr old mother's affairs 3 yrs ago. I had suggested he set something up for her for after he died as she couldn't manage things herself. We are in Australia.I am not mentally ill. I am genuine & have just discovered this site while researching abuse yet again, looking for ideas re handling my brother & sister. I have only limited funds available right now.

Since our father's death, my brother & a sister who lives near him & who is 2 yrs older (I am 8 yrs older) have jealously guarded their managment of our Mother's affairs. Our youngest sister committed suicide years ago (she had married an abusive man) & the one closest to me in age lives in another city (& is markedly BPD). They become abusive (in a range of ways) if I try to play my part (non-abusively) above being told what to do. They are significantly abusive, eg, seehttp://www.rickross.com/reference/brainwashing/brainwashing11.html. I am sure about this. I am not saying I am "perfect", but I am not like them & I try to br respectful & compassionate. My long-term husband is abusive.

I would like advice on how to deal with these 2 siblings.Our mother is currently in hospital & there are matters of concern re this.My normal, civil attempts to discuss get serious abuse back. Should I just give up? Our mother is not totally "normal" at the best of times (she varies) & is less so now that she has been put on risperidone & epilim in the hospital to quieten her down. She is becoming dependent & bed-ridden & this is of great concern to me, among other matters.Should I just wash my hands of this & move on? I find their abuse frustrating & distressing. It covers a range & is basically personally abusive & irrational & unreasonable, eg, telling me I am "bullying" & "divisive" and what I have & haven't done (not true). The way they do it is like being yelled at. I have had no contact now, after years of abuse, with my other sister after she said to me, a couple of years ago, "For a psychologist you are a lousy person.". I had not done anything to warrant this except in her eyes.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Anna replied 4 years ago.
Hello & Welcome to Just Answers.

This is a tough situation, but since you're in the field, I'm going to tell you what I really think and hope that you can hear that I have compassion for your situation.

When you have a family this dysfunctional, you can't hope to have a normal parental illness or death. The crazy that's already there spirals out of control and the sane person gets trampled on as they try to 'do the right thing' and get proper closure and help out the elderly relative. It just doesn't work if you have any expectation of normal with the other relatives. Adult children of the dysfunctional can't do the 'normal' things when their parents become infirm...it just ends in utter chaos, and the unreasonable relatives will blame all of it on you. They'll project it all on you and you'll be the scapegoat no matter what you do.

In light of that, I suggest to people in your situation to be very careful of 'romantic' notions that when things really turn for the worst health-wise with the elderly parents, that you back off and decide exactly what it is you want to achieve for yourself only. Make your expectations low, get in and have a talk or say what you need to say and then back out as far as you can go.

The dysfunction in families HATE the ones who get away. It's just too scary for them. They don't come around and they don't change. Let it go. Mourn your losses and stay far away. Imagine them to be in an aquarium like interesting fishes, but nothing more intimate, personal or deeper than that. They're not going to let you help.

Its more likely that they're going to abuse your mother like she probably did them, and you won't be able to stop it. Everyone has their own way of working through childhood pain, and for some people this happens when the parent becomes infirm. They really take it back out on them. It's not something you hear spoken of much, but I see it often as abusive, unprotective or personality disordered parents become incapacitated. Payback time is a difficult thing to watch as the wolverines circle the infirm parent, but there isn't much you can do about it without the pack turning all their rage onto you.

I suggest you step back and take care of yourself while mourning your losses.

My best to you.

If you would, please fill out the feedback form after accepting. I appreciate this opportunity to help you out today. If I can be of further service to you, just put "for Anna" in the front of your new question, and I'll be the one to answer it.

Thanks!

Anna

Anna, Mental Health Professional
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 1945
Experience: Licensed Clinical Social Worker with 29 years in addictions and mental health.
Anna and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • I can go as far as to say it could have resulted in saving my sons life and our entire family now knows what bipolar is and how to assist and understand my most wonderful son, brother and friend to all who loves him dearly. Thank you very much Corrie Moll Pretoria, South Africa
< Last | Next >
  • I can go as far as to say it could have resulted in saving my sons life and our entire family now knows what bipolar is and how to assist and understand my most wonderful son, brother and friend to all who loves him dearly. Thank you very much Corrie Moll Pretoria, South Africa
  • I thank-you so much! It really helped to have this information and confirmation. We will watch her carefully and get her in for the examination and US right away if things do not improve. God bless you as well! Claudia Albuquerque, NM
  • Outstanding response time less than 6 minutes. Answered the question professionally and with a great deal of compassion. Kevin Beaverton, OR
  • Suggested diagnosis was what I hoped and will take this info to my doctor's appointment next week.
    I feel better already! Thank you.
    Elanor Tracy, CA
  • Thank you to the Physician who answered my question today. The answer was far more informative than what I got from the Physicians I saw in person for my problem. Julie Lockesburg, AR
  • You have been more help than you know. I seriously don't know what my sisters situation would be today if you had not gone above and beyond just answering my questions. John and Stefanie Tucson, AZ
  • I have been dealing with an extremely serious health crisis for over three years, and one your physicians asked me more questions, gave me more answers and encouragement than a dozen different doctors who have been treating me!! Janet V Phoenix, AZ
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Dr. Keane

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1262
    Clinical Psychology PhD, Licensed Professional Counselor with experience in marriage/family, teens and child psychology.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/DR/Dr.Keane/2013-8-20_204325_drkeane.64x64.jpg Dr. Keane's Avatar

    Dr. Keane

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1262
    Clinical Psychology PhD, Licensed Professional Counselor with experience in marriage/family, teens and child psychology.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RE/resolutions66/2011-1-17_05728_IMG8202smilingeditedforJustAnswer.64x64.jpg Elliott, LPCC, NCC's Avatar

    Elliott, LPCC, NCC

    Psychotherapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    5024
    35 years of experience as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a college professor.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/formybunch/2010-12-06_191055_img_0975.jpg Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC's Avatar

    Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    3733
    Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/DR/DrAkiraOlsen/2012-2-20_746_AkiraADpicmain.64x64.jpg Dr. Olsen's Avatar

    Dr. Olsen

    Psychologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2336
    PsyD Psychologist
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/norriem/2009-5-27_134249_nm.jpg Norman M.'s Avatar

    Norman M.

    Psychotherapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2193
    UK trained in hypnotherapy, counselling and psychotherapy and have been in private practice. ADHP(NC), DEHP(NC), UKCP Registered and ECP.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/PsychologyProf/2010-07-15_171248_logos060400409.jpg Dr. Michael's Avatar

    Dr. Michael

    Psychologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2177
    Licensed Ph.D. Clinical Health Psychology with 30 years of experience in private practive and as a clinical psychology university professor.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/KURTEMMERLING/2010-07-23_215531_just_ask_picture1.jpg Steven Olsen's Avatar

    Steven Olsen

    Therapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1727
    More than twenty years of expertise in counseling, psychological diagnosis and education