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Hi, Im in a situation where Im back home living with…

Hi, I'm in a situation...
Hi,

I'm in a situation where I'm back home living with my parents temporarily; I'm 29, and have spent a few years working abroad, but moved home to do a Master's Degree, which I just finished. I used to have a great relationship with my mother, but while I was away, she and my sisters got closer, although they've both now moved away themselves.

Lately, I've realised that our relationship isn't what it used to be. I myself have been through a pretty bad break-up (although it was about a year and a half ago), and have been doing a lot of self-reflection, and probably have been a little more sensitive and insecure than I used to be.

Anyway, I feel the connection we used to have is greatly diminished. Often, I get the feeling when I'm talking to her that she isn't really that interested; she tends to cut across me quite often (before I've even made my point), and seems to be more concerned with what she wants to say herself, than really listening to me. I guess there was always an element of this, but it usen't bother me, while now it actually puts me off discussing anything with her in any great depth.

She definitely has picked up on me withdrawing in these situations, and gets frustrated, and from her comments it seems like she thinks I have a problem discussing anything with her. Furthermore, she's made comments about how she can 'discuss these things with my sisters', and how they have no problems etc. which is quite upsetting for me. I feel she dwells on this, feeling victimised, and wishes they were around, as opposed to me.

Obviously, this is my perspective on the situation, but I honestly feel this sums it up. I don't intend being around home much longer, depending on my job situation, but this still really gets me down, because our relationship used to mean so much to me. I would love more than anything to be able to talk to her, and feel like she cares, and is listening - I honestly listen to so much that she has to say, and wish it was reciprocal, and that I feel a connection, felt affection.

I hate being in this situation, at this stage, and that our relationship has regressed. But I can't deny my feelings, and I feel so consumed by this at times. I'm not sure it's something I can discuss with her, without it turning into a full blown argument, or hurting her feelings. I guess I'm just hoping to put some perspective on this, and rise above it, or if you feel there is something I should discuss with her, what it might be.

Many thanks in advance!

Peter
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Answered in 9 minutes by:
12/8/2013
Dr. Mark
Dr. Mark, Psychotherapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5,334
Experience: Dr. Mark is a PhD in psychology helping with relationships
Verified

Dr. Mark :

Hi, Peter! I'll be glad to help you with this issue.


Type a hello when you join the chat and we'll get started, okay?

Customer:

Hello

Dr. Mark :

HI.

Dr. Mark :

Let me ask you because it could be 50/50:

Dr. Mark :

Is it that with you living at home, you two are getting caught up in the little stresses of daily life and so little things become big things?

Dr. Mark :

Or

Dr. Mark :

do you think that there is a deeper problem between you and your mom?

Customer:

I tend to think it's the latter, but I guess a combination. It's mainly down to the fact that I valued the relationship we had so much, and saw her as my primary confidante etc., and the fact things have changed has left me frustrated and upset

Dr. Mark :

You describe it really, though, as you having changed:

Dr. Mark :

you've had a serious romantic relationship and you've been hurt and

Dr. Mark :

you've also gotten more experienced

Dr. Mark :

and you're older.

Dr. Mark :

You've changed, isn't that right?

Dr. Mark :

You may not be ready for the same mother/son relationship as a few years ago.

Customer:

Yeah, I know I have changed, but I was hoping for the security and familiarity of that relationship to still be there

Customer:

It's true, I've changed quite a bit really

Dr. Mark :

Part of security and familiarity is not going to be possible and part will.

Dr. Mark :

What do I mean?

Dr. Mark :

The part that is now in your past is that you have experienced enough of life now

Dr. Mark :

that your relationship to life, security, and future is different than when you were younger.

Dr. Mark :

And part of it is possible:

Dr. Mark :

but you have now give her more room than in the past.

Dr. Mark :

Why?

Dr. Mark :

Because you're older.

Dr. Mark :

And so you have to give her much more opportunity to share herself and not be so interested in you

Dr. Mark :

as in the past.

Customer:

Sure, I understand

Dr. Mark :

I think it would help you a lot

Dr. Mark :

if you begin to think of yourself more as "the wise son"

Dr. Mark :

rather than the "son she takes care of"

Dr. Mark :

Meaning, that you can listen to her and have an opinion.

Dr. Mark :

And you can share your own life as well.

Dr. Mark :

It is much more equal now, agreed?

Customer:

Yeah, it definitely is

Customer:

That makes sense, I guess I have been feeling a little sorry for myself, but probably need to adopt that approach, i.e. wise son

Customer:

Do you think this is something I need to work at myself in that case, as opposed to discussing anything with her?

Dr. Mark :

Well,

Dr. Mark :

yes and no.

Dr. Mark :

I don't think you should rely on her to give you solutions.

Dr. Mark :

You really don't need that.

Dr. Mark :

You ARE much wiser now than you used to be.

Dr. Mark :

But you can certainly seek to have her be a sounding board.

Dr. Mark :

This will take some patience on your part:

Dr. Mark :

you will need to be a better listener, willing to listen to her and not being so wanting to talk.

Dr. Mark :

Because now that you two are living in the same house,

Dr. Mark :

she sees you as someone she can talk with.

Dr. Mark :

And women need to talk.

Dr. Mark :

Big principle, right?

Dr. Mark :

Women need to talk.

Customer:

Haha, definitely

Dr. Mark :

So, this is what won't change: you're now older, more experienced, and

Dr. Mark :

she can't be your advisor/problem solver

Dr. Mark :

like when you were younger.

Dr. Mark :

She can listen

Dr. Mark :

And then she expects you to be more interested in her

Dr. Mark :

because you ARE her son.

Dr. Mark :

Okay?

Customer:

Okay

Customer:

That sounds fair, I suppose I do need to realize all these changes and accept them

Customer:

Thanks so much for your help

Customer:

I actually have to run, but this has been very helpful!

Customer:

Very much appreciated

Customer:

Thanks Dr. Mark

Dr. Mark
Dr. Mark, Psychotherapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5,334
Experience: Dr. Mark is a PhD in psychology helping with relationships
Verified
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