Family Matters
Dear Community,

Our tech team has launched updates to The Nest today. As a result of these updates, members of the Nest Community will need to change their password in order to continue participating in the community. In addition, The Nest community member's avatars will be replaced with generic default avatars. If you wish to revert to your original avatar, you will need to re-upload it via The Nest.

If you have questions about this, please email [email protected]

Thank you.

Note: This only affects The Nest's community members and will not affect members on The Bump or The Knot.

Is it okay to cut ties with family?

I am 28 and dealing with my parents divorce. They were married 29 years when they decided to end things. Now the last 5 or 6 years of their marriage was rocky for various reasons, but the last year of their marriage seems to be the biggest factor in their divorce. My mother has somewhat of a drinking problem and she doesn't acknowledge it. She has been on antidepressants for around 5 years to manage her anxiety. She has had to be institutionalized and still doesn't think she should stop drinking.

Around a year ago was when she was in the hospital, a month later she told us (my sisters and I) that she and my father and her were separating. And 2 months after that she told me that they were going to divorce and that she'd met someone else. I couldn't believe it. As if the divorce wasn't hard enough now she is dating someone?

Over the last year there have been several difficulties. She moved in with this man after just 3 months of dating in order to move out of the house with my sister since they didn't get along. My father later moved back to the house. She then got her own apartment. I thought that was a little better. But now she is moving in with him again. 

I have never met this man nor do I intend to. My mother began posting on facebook and sending messages to my friends and family, about her divorce, and about how she won't let anyone hold her down (referring to my sisters and I). My goal isn't to hold her down. I've made a number of attempts to try and tell her that I want her to make healthy decisions. And that moving in with someone after a 30 year marriage was unhealthy. My sisters and I all agree so we have become 'the bad guys.' This is the time of year when our birthdays all fall. My mother is upset because we haven't invited her to events where my dad will be. However she only texts me to tell me how angry and upset she is.

 I don't know what to do anymore. She stresses me out and makes me upset and I've been distancing myself. I don't do it because I hate her, I do it because I can't take the emotional toll any longer. I've been called names, talked down to, and yelled at for having an opinion. And I just want to throw in the towel and sever ties with her. Is this okay in any situation? Please give me feedback. And please try not to be condescending.  

Trying to Conceive Ticker

Re: Is it okay to cut ties with family?

  • Of course you know that mixing alcohol and an antidepressant is dangerous.

    And of course you know your mother had a drinking problem.

    She needs help for her problem -- she's in denial -- and she is risking her life doing what she is doing.

    You need to cut her off and tell her that until she cleans up her act and gets help from AA and is clean and sober for a good long while with AA's help -- and she can prove it --- then you will be more than happy to have her back in your life. Until then, not a chance of it.

    Here is where you really become "the bad guy."

    Al Anon for you,stat, btw.

    Your mother possibly also needs detox; a doc can make that call.

    Just for this alone, you need to end your relationship with her:

     I've been called names, talked down to, and yelled at for having an opinion. And I just want to throw in the towel and sever ties with her. Is this okay in any situation?


  • Unfortunately I am aware of all those things. The sad part is she is too, but doesn't view things the way my sisters and I do. And even worse, when she posts things on Facebook, she has so many people telling her how strong and independent she is, when they don't know half of the story about what happened in our lives. My mother, my sisters and I will be going to a family counselor this week. I am going to bring up her drinking and I hope that she sees things for the way we see them. She sees a psychologist every other week, but after 3 years I have only seen her mental health deteriorate. She wants to have a close relationship with us again, but I don't foresee that happening until she changes her ways. I appreciate your feedback. Thanks for the AA tip for myself, I will have to look up meetings in my area.
    Trying to Conceive Ticker
  • You shouldn't be forced to be surrounded by people who treat you poorly just because they are 'family'.

    Of course it's okay to cut ties with family if you think that is what's best for you.

  • While you are at it unfriend her or block her from posting on  your wall on FB. You don't need to read her blather.
  • She's trying to make this your fault so she doesn't have to stop drinking, while much of this could begin to get solved if she did quit drinking.

    It is quite right to tell her "Mom, I love you but I cannot be a part of your life until you stop drinking." She'll scream that she doesn't have to stop drinking, but if she doesn't it's evidence that she can't. And she needs help to stop.

    The rest is just calateral damage to the need to keep drinking - the new boyfriend, drama, anger.

    My darling daughter just turned 4 years old.
  • It's not only okay to cut ties with your family, I would highly recommend it. Your mom sounds completely toxic.


  • We deal with this with my mom.  She is in the beginning stages of dementia.  It mostly affects what she does socially.  She says incredibly inappropriate things and does things socially that aren't acceptable to most.  My sister and I have always worked with her, at her request, to remind her quietly when she needs to stop talking, needs to redirect, whatever.  She also talks about getting a gun to protect herself, but we try to stop others from encouraging her because it wouldn't be safe for her to have a gun.  But when other people hear or see it, they say we're the bad guy because we won't let mom do whatever she wants and we're trying to keep her down.  The fact is that they don't know the whole situation and they never will because we don't share mom's issues with others to respect her privacy.  We've learned to let it go and not take the criticism of us personally, but sometimes it still gets to us. 

    So, ignore what the others say.  You have to because they will never know the whole story.  If you try to explain, your mom will defend herself and they'll turn it around to make you look worse.  These are the things that you have to let go, unless you want to spill all your moms medical and alcohol history to everyone, which really isn't your place.

    image Visit The Nest! Love to scrapbook!
  • It's definitely okay to tell her that you can't be a part of her life until she seeks help and quits drinking.

    I'd also ditto the idea of blocking/unfriending on Facebook. 

    I'm really sorry for your troubles. Good Luck to you. 

Sign In or Register to comment.
Choose Another Board
Search Boards