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Complicated, Issues With Mother And My Own Chronic Disease.
A long story incoming,
I am 17 years old, i currently suffer from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and a form of bowel disease. I spent almost a whole year in bed, asleep for 18 hours a day, eating one meal a day and slowly wasting away. We finally found out what was going on after many wrong diagnosis's and doctors appointments and i am on the road to recovery. So far i have gained a little bit of weight, have a normal sleeping pattern and am dieting for both nutrition and weight. I have just started to introduce exercise into my routine in the last two months.
My mother has been supportive through out this, but is not understanding and i believe it has impacted her mental health. She has progressively started thinking that the fatigue and memory problems from CFS are all lies and that i am just lazy. I have to actively set reminders for every activity of the day to remember them and when i don't she just thinks i am being lazy. When i say i am too tired, apparently i am too lazy.
She has convinced herself that i am not trying to get better and i live being able to not do anything with life and be extremely unwell. She has grown angry, irritable and always seems to be distant or thinking about something else. Not long before i wrote this, i was writing my diet chart down for the dietitian and couldn't find the cream to find the brand, so i asked and she said it was on the top shelf, i looked on the top shelf where the cream always is, i said it wasn't there and she gets super angry storms up and pulls the cream out of the back of the middle of the fridge, insults me, tells me im useless and cant do anything for myself. She then asked if i could get her something i just said no, not after talking to me like that for such a trivial issue and went back into my room. She then turned the internet off and said she turned it off for not doing something for her.
Earlier i walk out to ask when dinner would be ready, she is irritable still and just gives me some really dismissive answer and attitude then swears under he breath. So i ask what did i do wrong? and she says this "Everything, you're useless and you never do anything, just like right now, standing there doing nothing".
I proceed to ask calmly, maybe we should go see a family therapist as the way you have been acting recently has been really hurting my mental state. She then proceeds to victimise herself and say that no one ever does anything for her and she is perfectly fine mentally.
Hi JaiPR and welcome to Beyond Blue
You've come a long way Jai, I'm so pleased to hear you are starting to recover now that they've given you a diagnosis. The relationship with your mum sounds incredibly difficult. Those things she says to you are just not right and it is so hard to not take them on board and begin to believe them yeh?
It's really good you've found your way here to our community. You'll find there are very supportive, caring, friendly and non judgemental people here.
Is there anyone else in your household, for example a sister, brother, father? Just asking to see if you're able to talk with them about what's happening with you and your mum? Has your relationship always been like it is now?
I'm not a health professional but I can give you examples of my lived experience. I do know from my own experience that Chronic Fatigue Syndrome isn't believed by some. I thought I had it for a long time, though in hindsight now I think it was my PTSD, anxiety and depression which was never diagnosed by my doctor that kept me falling into fatigue, or it could have been low thyroid functioning. Whatever it was - I was fatigued, especially after doing physical and mental things. I recovered eventually as I lessened the things I tried to achieved.
Do you have close trusted friends or other family members, e.g. grand parent you can talk to too?
You sound very intelligent and understanding of your situation and your mum's. While your mum won't go to therapy, do you have anyone you see? My thoughts are you might find that very useful.
There are also organisations such as:
- eHeadspace, phone 1800 650 890
- Headspace, ages 12-25, also have a free online 1:1 chat - www.headspace.org.au/eheadspace/
- Kids Helpline, anyone under the age of 25, have a free 1:1 chat - kidshelpline.com.au/get-help/webchat-counselling and a 24/7 number 1800 55 1800
- Lifeline - 13 11 14, 1:1 online chat open from 7pm til midnight www.lifeline.org.au/Get-Help/Online-Services/crisis-chat
You're not alone Jai. Keep reaching out if and when you want to.