Moms and Maids

My Mother Is Crazy

Hello all! 

Looking for some serious advice. 

I'm not really sure what my mother's problem is. We've always been pretty close, but she's a very difficult person to understand and be around. She's intense, stubborn, and never wrong. She's not liked any of my significant others - not a single one. But she appears to hate my fiance the most. My fiance is a kind person - caring, loving, and genuine. We started dating almost two years ago and he proposed in December. When I told my mom, she seemed excited on the phone and she keeps sending me links to different "mother of the bride" dresses she finds online. However, now that the wedding planning is getting real and we're trying to decide if we want to get married in 2017 or 2018, she's starting to act really negative. 

Our conversation started off today with her telling me that she didn't like my fiance because he "never did anything" with me. She thinks that I'm going to miss out on life because I haven't traveled recently and that I should be traveling all the time (mind you - I've taken several trips across the country within the last two years but just started a new job that doesn't give me as much flexibility with my schedule as the old one) and not even considering marriage because I'm young (27). She also claims that I'm planning a wedding for myself and my fiance's family because our family lives 8 hours away and she lives 5 hours away and she says no one will want to come. My fiance's family lives no more than 15 minutes down the road and this has been a constant issue with her. She also says that I'm alienating my family by planning a wedding here instead of back home.  THEN she changes gears and says we should just elope and forget about a wedding. 

I DO NOT UNDERSTAND.

I want my mother to be involved. She's my mom. But I cannot handle her like this. She's gotten much worse over the last two months and I've asked her what she wants from me to make her happy. At this point, I'm so over everything that I don't even want to plan the wedding anymore because she makes me feel so guilty for living in the city that I live in, for moving here in the first place, and for wanting to plan a wedding here. It's easier for me and I won't have to travel between places to set things up, plus it'll be so easy to keep the guest list smaller and save on money. I've already told her that she's stuck with my fiance because he's not going anywhere. I love him. We bought a house together and have already started our lives together. He's not going anywhere. That, of course, didn't sit well with her and we didn't speak for almost two months because of it.

I'm not asking her for money, or anyone, for that matter - I never intended to. This is all coming out of our pockets. She mentioned planning a party back home, but I'm not sure I'm going to be able to afford a wedding, let alone a SECOND reception 8 hours away.  

Has anyone been through something like this? What do I do? HELP!!!!

Re: My Mother Is Crazy

  • Sorry your mom is being difficult. I agree with PP, plan the wedding you and your FH want and can afford. Don't talk to her about the wedding and don't accept any money from her.
  • ILoveBeachMusicILoveBeachMusic Indiana member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    I'm going to answer from your mother's perspective. She probably is sad that you aren't geographically closer (you said you had moved further away) and can't be as involved with the wedding planning as she would like to be. I know I went through this when my daughter got married. We also had the problem of our family being far away and his immediate family being closer. She is having to readjust her vision of her daughter's wedding day. I know, I know she shouldn't be doing the planning. Seriously though, this a recent thing that I had to learn. Up until recently (your generation of weddings) the bride's parents did the planning. It was a difficult lesson to learn, but I did, so I'm sure your mother can. You said at the beginning of your post that you and Mom have always been close. Try including her in as many activities as possible- tastings, floral showings, dress search - if she wants to, of course. She may have friends who have daughters that live close to them and hears about how they did planning together - again I can relate to that. If you truly have a close relationship you can work through this.

    Now the disrespect toward your fiance is a totally different thing. You need to make sure she knows in no uncertain terms that that is not acceptable.
    SP29charlotte989875MesmrEwe
  • OliveOilsMomOliveOilsMom South Jersey member
    Tenth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    I'm going to answer from your mother's perspective. She probably is sad that you aren't geographically closer (you said you had moved further away) and can't be as involved with the wedding planning as she would like to be. I know I went through this when my daughter got married. We also had the problem of our family being far away and his immediate family being closer. She is having to readjust her vision of her daughter's wedding day. I know, I know she shouldn't be doing the planning. Seriously though, this a recent thing that I had to learn. Up until recently (your generation of weddings) the bride's parents did the planning. It was a difficult lesson to learn, but I did, so I'm sure your mother can. You said at the beginning of your post that you and Mom have always been close. Try including her in as many activities as possible- tastings, floral showings, dress search - if she wants to, of course. She may have friends who have daughters that live close to them and hears about how they did planning together - again I can relate to that. If you truly have a close relationship you can work through this.

    Now the disrespect toward your fiance is a totally different thing. You need to make sure she knows in no uncertain terms that that is not acceptable.
    I would agree with most of what you wrote, but I think there is something else up with OP's mom.  OP says her mother has never liked any of her BFs.  And that her mom is only happy when talking about the dress that she will wear and none of the other wedding plans. Also, 27 is in no way "too young" to get married. So I think there is some sort of personality issue at play with OP's mom.

    OP - I think you need to just keep your mom out of all wedding planning.  Just do your thing with your FI.  Send the invites out when the time comes.  If mom keeps bringing it up, just keep changing the subject away from the wedding.  "Mom, that is something we haven't decided on yet.  I will keep it in mind when we plan x.  How is the weather today?  Getting any rain lately"

    If she won't give it up, just tell her that you won't discuss the wedding with her.  "Mom, I know you aren't happy with our wedding plans.  But this is the wedding that FI and I want to have.  It will probably be best if we don't discuss the wedding any further."
    SP29
  • OliveOilsMomOliveOilsMom South Jersey member
    Tenth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    Hello all! 

    Looking for some serious advice. 

    I'm not really sure what my mother's problem is. We've always been pretty close, but she's a very difficult person to understand and be around. She's intense, stubborn, and never wrong. She's not liked any of my significant others - not a single one. But she appears to hate my fiance the most. My fiance is a kind person - caring, loving, and genuine. We started dating almost two years ago and he proposed in December. When I told my mom, she seemed excited on the phone and she keeps sending me links to different "mother of the bride" dresses she finds online. However, now that the wedding planning is getting real and we're trying to decide if we want to get married in 2017 or 2018, she's starting to act really negative. 

    Our conversation started off today with her telling me that she didn't like my fiance because he "never did anything" with me. She thinks that I'm going to miss out on life because I haven't traveled recently and that I should be traveling all the time (mind you - I've taken several trips across the country within the last two years but just started a new job that doesn't give me as much flexibility with my schedule as the old one) and not even considering marriage because I'm young (27). She also claims that I'm planning a wedding for myself and my fiance's family because our family lives 8 hours away and she lives 5 hours away and she says no one will want to come. My fiance's family lives no more than 15 minutes down the road and this has been a constant issue with her. She also says that I'm alienating my family by planning a wedding here instead of back home.  THEN she changes gears and says we should just elope and forget about a wedding. 

    I DO NOT UNDERSTAND.

    I want my mother to be involved. She's my mom. But I cannot handle her like this. She's gotten much worse over the last two months and I've asked her what she wants from me to make her happy. At this point, I'm so over everything that I don't even want to plan the wedding anymore because she makes me feel so guilty for living in the city that I live in, for moving here in the first place, and for wanting to plan a wedding here. It's easier for me and I won't have to travel between places to set things up, plus it'll be so easy to keep the guest list smaller and save on money. I've already told her that she's stuck with my fiance because he's not going anywhere. I love him. We bought a house together and have already started our lives together. He's not going anywhere. That, of course, didn't sit well with her and we didn't speak for almost two months because of it.

    I'm not asking her for money, or anyone, for that matter - I never intended to. This is all coming out of our pockets. She mentioned planning a party back home, but I'm not sure I'm going to be able to afford a wedding, let alone a SECOND reception 8 hours away.  

    Has anyone been through something like this? What do I do? HELP!!!!

    See my response above, but for the 2nd reception.  First, if you don't want it, tell your mom no.  It's not a bad word, use it.  Your mom can't make you spend money on something you don't want.
    SP29
  • I also had a Mom who told me "Never get married.  It is stupid."  Of course, she had two unsuccessful marriages and was recently divorced.  She perked up when she found her dress.
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  • ILoveBeachMusicILoveBeachMusic Indiana member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    I'm going to answer from your mother's perspective. She probably is sad that you aren't geographically closer (you said you had moved further away) and can't be as involved with the wedding planning as she would like to be. I know I went through this when my daughter got married. We also had the problem of our family being far away and his immediate family being closer. She is having to readjust her vision of her daughter's wedding day. I know, I know she shouldn't be doing the planning. Seriously though, this a recent thing that I had to learn. Up until recently (your generation of weddings) the bride's parents did the planning. It was a difficult lesson to learn, but I did, so I'm sure your mother can. You said at the beginning of your post that you and Mom have always been close. Try including her in as many activities as possible- tastings, floral showings, dress search - if she wants to, of course. She may have friends who have daughters that live close to them and hears about how they did planning together - again I can relate to that. If you truly have a close relationship you can work through this.

    Now the disrespect toward your fiance is a totally different thing. You need to make sure she knows in no uncertain terms that that is not acceptable.
    I would agree with most of what you wrote, but I think there is something else up with OP's mom.  OP says her mother has never liked any of her BFs.  And that her mom is only happy when talking about the dress that she will wear and none of the other wedding plans. Also, 27 is in no way "too young" to get married. So I think there is some sort of personality issue at play with OP's mom.

    OP - I think you need to just keep your mom out of all wedding planning.  Just do your thing with your FI.  Send the invites out when the time comes.  If mom keeps bringing it up, just keep changing the subject away from the wedding.  "Mom, that is something we haven't decided on yet.  I will keep it in mind when we plan x.  How is the weather today?  Getting any rain lately"

    If she won't give it up, just tell her that you won't discuss the wedding with her.  "Mom, I know you aren't happy with our wedding plans.  But this is the wedding that FI and I want to have.  It will probably be best if we don't discuss the wedding any further."
    Yes it does seem like Mom has other issues going on, but OP says she wants her Mom to be involved so I just thought to give her some things to think about that she might not have thought about before.
    OliveOilsMom
  • ILoveBeachMusicILoveBeachMusic Indiana member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers

    MobKaz said:
    I am also a MOB, and will project an additional perspective to consider. 

    You do not mention your dad.  Is your mom alone?  She may be worried that the geographical separation will lead to a relationship separation.  Your mom may even be projecting that she will be replaced by your MIL.  If your mom is the type to think really far ahead, she may have already put herself into "the other grandma" mode.  Some of what she says sounds like jealousy, hurt, and fear.

     
    Totally agree. I have these feelings because my DD and SIL live near his parents and grandparents. They see them much more frequently than they see us. On top of that, he is an only child. I have to really work at not having the old jealousy, hurt thing come up. I'm still dealing with things from the wedding that hurt my feelings but it is getting better. DD and I have really tried to work on moving forward from everything. BTW, my husband is still in the picture!
  • I agree with the PP in that it sounds like your Mom is in a bit of "mourning" (not the right word, but not really a better word to describe it)...  To her you'll ALWAYS be her little girl twirling around the living room.  Now that you're getting married (she still sees you as however old you were when you moved out), and traditionally, not just the families did a majority of the planning as PP mentioned, the tradition was that the wedding be held in the bride's hometown.  I think there's a giant elephant in the room that a phone call, or text, or email isn't going to come even remotely close to resolving, this is a go visit and take a long walk together to talk about life type issue.  This also isn't a "go see a therapist" one either because it's some bigger life issues at play, and your wedding, isn't a "bigger life issue".  For example, she may be running scenarios in her head of "what happens as she ages" (falls and gets hurt - who does she call?...  you have a grandbaby - not being in their life other than a couple times a year instead of being "Grandma Daycare"..)  There's a finality to your being 8 hours away and getting married there. 

    The idea of a "Celebration of Marriage" gathering in your hometown really does seem like a viable idea to suggest and plan it together (can include in your invites/RSVP's).  Can be cake & punch with lawn darts at the local park's shelter house, or keep it flexible until you know how your numbers. 

    And finally - Just because your guest list is 8 hours away, doesn't mean they aren't going to show up on your wedding if they're invited.  If you're banking on no-shows to "cut costs" beware!  More than one bride has come on here having planned fewer guests to show up than RSVP and they booked a space far too small because "not everyone is going to show up at essentially a DW".  Always err on the side of "100% showing up" when planning then scale back accordingly once you have the RSVP's back... 

    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
    ILoveBeachMusic
  • Thanks for all of the replies everyone! It has really helped me see some of your points.

    Just for clarification: I am not "banking" on guests not showing - I know that my extended family can't make it this far, but my immediate family and those that I am close to will be able to come. There is a cost issue associated with the travel and most of my family cannot afford to come here. There is also a social status part to it that I want nothing to do with - I don't care if my second cousin's best friend's mother's father's sister comes to my wedding. I just want it simple and small with those that I am close to and want with me on my big day and yes, invitations will be limited because of this.

    I've reasoned this out with my mother and have included my grandmother and aunt in the planning as they are like my other "parents". We have decided to have a cookout with my fiance and I the weekend after our wedding at a relative's house. It'll be a small, simple affair that will include all of my families back home (mom's, dad's, and step-dad's). I should also note that my mother has been married twice, is divorced, and lives 13 hours away from our family (further than I do) with my younger sister. I am essentially their closest relative and they chose to move themselves. There is no way that she'd be able to help me plan a wedding in my hometown even if I was willing to go that route. 

    Now, as for an update: I sort of "forced" her to be involved with wedding planning. Now that we've reserved a venue and a date, I've been tossing around ideas with my grandmother, aunt, and mom. I think having the other two involved with her is helping. She hasn't been nasty to me and has even offered to come and visit me (WHICH HAS NOT HAPPENED ONCE SINCE I MOVED HERE) this month to start looking at caterers. I still feel like I'm walking on eggshells, but things seem less dire than before. I think a nice chat with her one on one when she comes to visit will be good - thanks for the suggestions above! 
    OliveOilsMom
  • Sounds like your mother is unstable.  Having a relationship with someone who is unstable can be extraordinarily difficult.  Do you enjoy trying to have a relationship with her even though it makes you feel awful? 
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