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Happy Motherless Childless Mother’s Day

Community Member

Does anyone else have to celebrate Mother’s Day on their own not just because of the pandemic?

My mother is an abusive narcissist who lost custody of me and then, years later, my younger half-siblings. When I was very young, my mother would be absent for many months on her drug binges but would show up unannounced every Mother’s Day. In the past few years, she developed a habit of interfering with the relationships between us siblings.

For example, a week before Mother’s Day last year, my sister and I planned to catch up. She is pliable and a people pleaser, so easy for our mother to control. My mother would demand that my sister reveal any plans that we had together so she invited herself along to our catch-up although she knew I didn’t want her there. She demanded to know when I’m going to have children and when I said that I didn’t have any plans, she sulked. She had been inviting herself along whenever my sister & brother had plans together too, even though he did his best to avoid her since he was traumatised by her abuse. When the country was preparing to go into lockdown my brother died by suicide. I haven’t been in contact with my mother at all since then and I’m still in shock, but I have no doubt that she will be acting as if his passing is all about her.

Since I’m in my thirties now, people often ask me intrusive questions about my (non-existent) plans to have children. Although I love children, I don’t feel the need to conform to society’s outdated expectations of women reproducing no matter their circumstances. Also, the pandemic has affected my work/income so now I’m too busy trying to stay afloat to worry about financially supporting children as well.

I’m extremely tired of dealing with some people’s judgemental, condescending attitudes towards my relationship (or lack of) with my mother and also my child-free lifestyle. The marketing for Mother’s Day this year seems way more aggressive since our economy’s in such a dire state now. I’m wondering if other people on these forums have had similar issues with Mother’s Day?




7 Replies 7

white knight
Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi Litty, welcome

oh boy, you and I are so similar.

Im sorry about you losing your brother, I lost mine in 1978 by suicide, he was 26yo.

Our mother has stamped her feet, manipulated, used loved ones as weapons, ruined weddings and divided siblings.

Ten years ago after threatening to ruin my second wedding I sort to remove her from the wedding guest list AND got a court order preventing her from coming within 500 metres of the event. Some people wouldn’t understand such actions but they haven’t experienced the wrath of such a mother.

My remaining sibling, my younger sister, we have had our mother divide us all our lives. We got together ten years ago and cut all ties so since then we have been very close, supportive and caring.

I first realised why our mother acts the way she does when I googled

queen witch hermit waif

My mother has all four characters.

Btw, it’s your life, don’t have kids if you don’t want them.

You are not in this world to live up to others expectations

Repost anytime


Community Member

Hi Kitty,

My mother passed away from cancer nearly a decade ago, I am an only child (adopted), and while my wife has 4 children she doesn't see them & her ex alienates her from them, and her mother sounds very much like yours in many ways so there is no joy in mother's day there.

So in a way I am very much like you, and my wife (who is living apart from me now) just craws under a rock & pretends its just a normal sunday.

Do you want to know a funny thing though? There was this study done where they asked people what the "best" life was. People responded about having a family, succeeding in business, etc. The key thing was that it was those who HAD family were the ones saying that family was the best life to have. Now to me this seems like insecurity, where people almost will themselves to believe that whatever their choices in life are, those are the "best" choices & everyone else should make them as well. So often what you may think is judgement on their part towards you, may actually be envy because they dont feel like their choices are making them happy. If they look down on you, then it makes their shitty life seem a little less shitty to them.

Its sad I know, but people have a tenancy to use others to make themselves feel better.

This life is too big for any one individual to experience everything in it. That means some lives will not have marriage, some will not have children, and others will not have success at work. So there isn't one formula to what society "should" expect, only that you are making the most of whatever life you have in whatever way that you can because we all owe it to ourselves... its the only life we will ever know, so why not make the most of it in the ways that make us happy

PS: Tell your sister you are going to one place, knowing your mother will get it out of her, then tell your sister you will pick her up and take her somewhere completely different instead (last minute change of mind). Do this enough times, your mother might get the hint 😉

Always Firgotten

- love your post


Thanks a lot for your support TonyWK. I'm glad to hear that you and your younger sister have such a close relationship despite all of your mother's drama.

My mother is mainly the 'witch' BPD subtype and she shows characteristics of queen, hermit and waif subtypes as well. I pity her as she suffered severe abuse as a child but I can't keep sacrificing my wellbeing for her to feel better about herself. There's a lot more online literature about abusive mothers with personality disorders but I think most people still struggle to empathise unless they've had similar experiences to us. For that reason, I've found discussing these issues on this forum helpful.

I appreciate your advice AlwaysForgotten. Your wife is lucky that you empathise with her situation - most people wouldn't. People would save others dealing with estrangement a lot of hassle if they realised that there are many complicated reasons for these situations and stopped making vague assumptions about others' relationships.

That's so true that other people have a tendency to use others to make themselves feel better. Seems like some people decide that others should live in the exact same ways that they do to validate their own lifestyle choices. It's also true that you can't have it all and I don't know anyone that does in reality.

white knight
Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi Kitty

Many years ago I saw a YouTube video by a New York psychiatrist that went for 58 seconds.

I watched it. It was about what to do when you have a narcissist in the family. Surprisingly his message was- to remove them from your life. That was all.

Most severe BPD sufferers have endured some form of childhood abuse. I’ve read that the worst age for them is around 5-9yo whereby they could feel rejection or favouritism to another sibling.

what is crucial here is people found with such an illness is treatment (if people reading this have BPD and getting treatment then I’m not referring to you and well done)- and if they don’t get treatment they are a wandering nightmare for others. Furthermore if some get treatment they don’t last long in it and often blame others, even the psychiatrist for making them worse.

This is why they are often unworkable and cutting my sister and my losses was the better way for self preservation.

In fact I googled “children of borderline mothers” and came up with all sorts of symptoms possible like- guilt, frustration, low self esteem...also illnesses possible like bipolar, anxiety, depression etc- what my sister and I have.


beyondblue topic emotional blackmail, likely extreme BPD

beyondblue topic BPD mother made me an emotional basket case


Hi Tony/Kitty,

I hadn't heard of the Witch/Waif/Queen/Hermit subtypes before, I had mainly been focusing on Millons identification of DIscouraging/Impulsive/Petulant/Self-Destructive.

My wife is really hard to categorize under Millon, as I can see equal facets of all of them, but after reading these from Lawson I think predominantly my wife is the Hermit. I recently had a fairly indepth email conversation with a Psychiatrist in the US who was theorizing how dysfunctional families with BPD children would tend to "keep" their children in suffering from the disorder on purpose. So any treatment or gains the child may have had, the parents would undermine any success in order to force them to return to being the family's scapegoat.

I think for me, over the last 10 years the one thing I have learned is that as long as I am not giving more of myself than what I am happy to give, I am ok to go along with it. You cant just keep sacrificing yourself, so you have to know where your limits are & where your line is. You know you are going to cop it when you draw that line but lets face it... being in any relationship with BPD both sides are coping it no matter what, so may as well make it for a valid reason that you can be in control over rather than the unfortunate side effect of this disorder which makes the choice for you.