Amalthea (amaltheae) wrote,


We have this ongoing struggle in our relationship. Deb needs to strengthen her relationship with her mother and needs someone like her mother to talk to about a lot of the things that bother her that really need an ear outside the relationship from time to time. So she is working on going to her mom about things when she needs that sort of listening.

This is all fine and good in idea, something I completely aknowledge that she needs and think she really should do without guilt.

The problem is that her mother has made it painfully clear that she doesn't really like me. She has been afraid of being fat her whole life and that's often all she seems to see of me. She doesn't respect me. She gives credit to Joel for correcting Deb's financial nightmare despite the five years of work I did before he joined our lives 6 months before I finished all of it. She resents my artistic talent and considers me competition. She seems to find me irritating more often than anything else, because I remind her of all her fears and short-fallings in her own mind and when we dissagree I don't play the doting daughter that conceeds to mom's opinion. (She doesn't actually expect this behavior of her own children, but she seems to of everyone else of our generation who interacts with her.)

Deb eventually threw a tantrum at her to stop treating me the way she did after her pet surrogate daughter Jessica (Deb's brother's ex-wife who their mom even sided with during their divorce for no good reason other than her obsessive codependant relationship between them two of them) and I both made her afghans for Christmas and B cooed over the one Jessica made and barely aknowledged my effort at all when it was clear to the rest of the room which one relfected a time committment and effort. Dennis' sister spoke up and tried to make me feel better. My one regret about Janna is that I didn't know her better and didn't give the afghan to her since she would have loved it where B never would.

B said she didn't want to hear it because she was dealing with breast cancer at the time and told everyone to pretend to be friendly and happy in her presence. Eventually she got the gyst of it and basically started trying not to be a complete passive agressive bitch to me.

But now every interaction feels forced. I still don't feel like she has the faintest respect for me as a person, and I know she can be nearly as vindictive and cruel as my mother can be. She is someone I consider to be dangerous to let at all remotely close to me because she cannot see me for who I am and does a pretty sad job at pretending.

When someone triggers that reaction in me, I want them to know nothing about my life. I want them to have nothing at all as potential ammo. I don't even want to answer the question "how was your day" let alone allow them the knowledge of anything at all remotely personal.

See, there is the problem. Deb needs to talk to her about personal things. I need her not to know personal things about me. The two needs conflict badly sometimes.

Deb told me tonight that she told her mother that I miscarried. I started crying. My stomach clinched and turned in a full panic attack. I said that she shouldn't tell her mother such things about me, but she got all upset that she needed to talk to her mom about it, and so I backed down. But I spent dinner trying not to throw-up, making myself sick with total discomfort on the subject. I am both not okay with telling Deb not to talk to her mother and Deb's easily crushed nature on the subject, nor am I even faintly okay with B knowing this sort of thing about me.

The only thing remotely like a solution I can come up with is just to not ever agree to be in B's 'presence, but that means that I get to sit at home and cry at feeling left out of every fucking family I've ever known while they go see them, and it means that I probably don't get to see her husband Dennis who I actually really like even if we have occassionally had our issues.


I don't even know how to begin to explain the level of reaction I had at the idea that B knew I had miscarried. I just mostly dodged the subject at dinner. But it made my skin crawl, the bottom fall out of my stomach and me dread seeing her again. I could barely swallow and couldn't concentrate. It made me feel like a failure in some way that I can't even quantify. It made me feel like I was waiting my mother's condescention, phonyness, constant dissaproval, etc all over again and that I was 5 years old with no way out and no way to prevent it. It made me uncomfortable telling anyone at all, including my spouses of any possibility I might be pregnant in the future. It caused full bore retreat into myself and a great deal of pain. I didn't want any of this reaction. I tried to keep at least the brunt of it from overwhelming dinner because it embarassed me that anything about her could cause this reaction.

And yet, if I explain this to Deb in any way, it causes a similar distressing nightmare at her feeling guilty that she needed to talk about it with her mother and her being equally stuck.

I wish I had some idea what to do. I don't know how to protect myself from her and let Deb tell her intimate details about me that I have trouble trusting anyone with.

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