I totally reached a breaking point today. I literally wanted to die because I saw no way out. I still haven’t entirely gotten past that mood, to be honest. I am very cautious about what I say because I don’t want to get 5150’d.
I’m just so overwhelmed by everything. I can’t get everything done at all and nobody will help me.
I called Amy and she had me do some breathing exercises until I could stop crying. Then, we had a 2-hour talk on the phone, which was really helpful and interesting.
She referred to Chloe and Dylan as the “regressed 14-year-olds” and she wasn’t wrong. That’s exactly how they’ve been behaving. I know that we’re all grieving in our own ways but their particular way is very unhelpful.
She suggested that I sit down with them and have a family meeting. She described our household (like all households) as being a mini-commune, and said that it can’t work if all members aren’t pulling their weight. And they’re not at all.
I did have that talk with them tonight and I hope they will carry out their end of the bargain. I’ve agreed to charge Chloe $10 a day if she doesn’t do all her chores as “room and board” and she has to do ALL the chores. She doesn’t get to skip one of them and get paid $2 less or something.
Amy also told me that she views me as a peer and Chloe and Dylan view me as “mom.” At first, I was a bit offended by that. But she thinks of it as a good thing and she would never change anything about her upbringing. She sees herself as an exact mix of both me and J, which I would agree is true.
She’s right, however, about the distinction between us being peers and the other kids seeing me as “mom.” In fact, it’s why she listened to me at 18 and I told her that she could move back to Michigan if she wanted, but it would probably be the biggest mistake of her life and it might not be easily undone.
But I get the difference between peer and “mom” and honestly, I appreciate the fact that she’s more independent. She also sticks up for anyone who has been wronged and has a great sense of justice. She’s not dependent on me in the least–which sometimes is lonely and disappointing for me, but she’s also a fully functional adult. The younger two kids are worlds away from what she has achieved.
But I still don’t really want to be here anymore. Not without J.
My MIL is making my life so much worse, too. She refuses any contact with me and she’s not coming down for J’s memorial. I’ve tried reaching out to J’s sister because she’s more sensible but she can’t get back to me yet because she’s had such a busy weekend.
But J’s sister is also on her mom’s side because like J, she still wants to believe her mom will change and love her like a mother should. She doesn’t seem to understand that her mom is a true narcissist. She understands that her mom is “difficult” but also says I “have to forgive” and “give her grace.”
And I can’t. I can’t give grace to a woman who destroyed my husband’s life. She never once supported him in ANYTHING. From standing by as her husband (J’s stepdad) beat him to within an inch of his life to trying to talk him out of taking chemo, she’s never sided with him. Ever.
He got a business degree because she said to, even though he really wanted to major in elementary education instead (and he would have been absolutely AMAZING as an elementary school teacher.) His degree never helped him other than being “just a degree” for jobs that required it.
It feels like now, even after his death, she STILL won’t side with him. After all, the day after he died, she got so pissed off at us because we told her to stop talking about the evils of chemo. She actually said that oncologists don’t get paid if their patients aren’t on chemo. *rolling eyes*
I just feel like she could never once support him, even when it mattered the most. And I don’t forgive her for that one bit. I think I’m going to write her a letter and tell her that she can be mad at me all she wants, but it doesn’t change the fact that she FAILED as a mother.