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Any resources/materials about divorcing my own family and healing

Community Member

Could I please have some recommendation regarding the resources/materials/books dealing with cutting off the relationship with toxic family member and healing from it?

After 10 years of giving a chance to my mother - who is toxic, manipulative, controlling, delusional, angry all the time - I am deciding to completely cut off the relationship with her. Sitting alone here and tying this thread - it still feels like I am hearing her voice of telling me what I should be doing right now, what I should be eating for dinner tonight, what clothes I should be wearing, etc.

I so much want to get rid of this invisible voice completely from my mind. How can I fix this?

7 Replies 7

white knight
Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi UO, welcome

Ok, totally understand. Briefly, my mother did similar and ruined my first wedding, manipulated our beautiful father against us kids and damaged us psychologically beyond repair.

For decades she succeeded in leaving a train wreck wherever she went. Then one day a friend suggested I read a book called "walking on egg shells by Dr Christine Lawson. ..and I read about my mother word for word.

Buy the book or google

Waif witch hermit queen

They are the four characters the Dr describes that make up the mental illness chonic Borderline Personality Disorder (apologies to bpd suffeters getting treatment I commend you)

One doesnt need all four characters to be destructive.

My sister and I both (after begging mother to get help) disowned our mother in hope we could find a stable happy life. We did, we formed some basic family rules eg support each other, no using mothers techniques like manipulation, yelling, ringing while at work, emotional blackmail or bribing.

It came at a cost. We lost several relatives. She contacted our friends. She even reporyed my sister to DHS for child abuse when it was fabricated-revenge.

The power of suvh people is immense but once contact is cut completely they lose that power fully. If you return they win again. A year or two and the train wreck returns.

I recommend that google above and feel free to repost as any such developments will be traumatic and we are here to help.

You can always repost here on this thread and when you do it goes back to the top ready for another reply.


Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hi Unusual orchid,

Welcome to the forums and thanks for your post.

The two books I can highly recommend are 'The Gaslight effect' by Dr. Robin Stern and 'Healing the child within' by Charles Whitfield.

The second one I would probably recommend more for 'self-help' where as the first one highlighted to me so many things that were toxic that I didn't realise. Ultimately though, it can be quite hard to take the 'self-help' route on your own especially when there's so much pain, so I also vouch for seeing a therapist if you can. I think personally, the biggest way to fix this is to recognise that what happened wasn't right, you didn't deserve it (this was/is the hardest thing for me), and learning that it is your past and not your future. You get to be your own person now, even if that means rebelling against all the messages and rules you were taught to follow.

Hope this is helpful,

Wow, thank you so much. I will read both - they seem so important for me to read for my recovery at this stage of my life - in almost 40 years, finally I feel I'm on the right path to recovery. It's better late than never, right? 🙂

A couple of days ago, I declared to my sister that I will cut off all of the contact with the mother and there will be no more room for reconciliation. Like you narrated - it's been going around the circle - she is being remorseful, I go back, then she believes she regained her power and re-explodes.

I am also having a feeling that those books might also make me upset - yet I will regard it as a part of the recovery and I will keep you posted as to how I am going.

Thank you so much. Your post truly came to me as the White Knight(!)

Thank you very much for your kind words. Yes, it has been hard to recognise how I was treated by the mother wasn't right and it's my past, not the future. Failure to acknowledge this ruined my past relationships without fail. I see that it's going to be very hard to change my old habits inherited from the mother, yet I really want to change and want to be my own good person..

Again thank you for your thoughts and recommendations.

Hi Unusual orchid, and a warm welcome.

Great replies from all those above me and you have to make sure you set the boundaries so that she won't try and contact you, also if I may say, and I'm very sorry for doing this, but when you are stressed out and not feeling well, is to try and learn on another you can react to somebody and not behave as you would talk back to your mother.

This could keep you locked mentally the same as your mother, try and change your behaviour.

I meant in no way to upset you, and if I did, I'm so terribly sorry, but these traits can be overcome by changing your outlook on life.

Furbish your house the way you want to, but more importantly try not to say 'mum wouldn't have it that way', because what this does is keep her in your mind.

My apologies but we want you to get 'better sooner than later', and hope to hear back from you.

Best wishes.


Dear Geoff,

Not at all - your comments do not upset me. You're right - whenever I try to buy clothes or something to decorate my place, I would think - "my mum would like this, oh she would not like that, etc". Then I realised that I need to break this cycle of thinking.

I really want to change myself by breaking and removing all the old habits and traits that I inherited from the mother. I expressed my decision to my sister and my father. Apparently the mother is asking around my sister and father why I am not talking to her - I believe I even don't need to explain to her my reasons of why I stopped talking to her. I am hoping my father or sister will pass my message onto her and she will leave me alone..

Frankly I feel that my mood is becoming more stable since I stopped talking to the mother a few weeks ago. It also feels like my mind is getting clearer. So I believe, talking back to her - even to explain why I am going to divorce her - would make me slip back, which is the last thing I want.

I am so grateful for this forum where I can express my thoughts and feelings and receive so many kind words and insights that I can rely on. Thanks to this place, I feel that I am not alone.

I will keep you all posted here as to how I am progressing.

Thank you x

Good Morning Unusual orchid, now that you're away from your mother, that is talking to her, as soon as a thought about what you might say to justify yourself is keeping you locked in, so think about something else you would love to do, remember you don't have to explain anything to her, because she is always right.

Take care.