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overly critical parents?

Community Member

Hi there,

this is my first time posting on a forum but I really felt I needed advice.

More and more my mother is becoming critical of what I do and criticising my every move, while my father (when he is home) lashes out at me if I make a wrong move. Then when they’re in the same room together they don’t really talk, just argue. But my mum is the type of person that wouldn’t get divorced until my younger siblings finish school so they don’t “disrupt” our lives but at this point I feel like it would make our life better.

I have epilepsy and have for nearly five years, which means constantly being fussed about whether it’s my sleep schedule, taking medication on time or going out to a party it just never feels normal and it was only up until recently that I put my foot down and spoke to my parents about letting me handle it on my own so that I can regain confidence in my self and my ability to be a strong individual.

It was all looking up, I had been exercising, working hard at my job that I love, and receiving distinctions in all my classes but then my mum said that she has never been more disappointed in me. This was the happiest I had been in so long and it was almost as if she felt the need to criticise me so that I didn’t drift further into becoming my own person.

I try to confront her about it but she dismisses me, telling me she is dealing with much bigger stresses and needs my support. She is constantly telling me about these stresses but can’t say what they are at this point and that I need to just trust her.

As a result I’ve been saving for myself and my family incase everything goes south, trying so hard to not contribute to any extra costs as I know money is tight currently and I have begun looking for a higher paying job despite loving the one I currently am at. I haven’t told her and I don’t want to as I don’t want to add to anything, but it’s as if I’m the person she’s taking all her frustrations out on and she thinks because I am her daughter I will take it and not say anything back. It’s just becoming harder and harder to take. The things she says to me have been gut wrenching, and she has begun saying these things to my younger siblings as well, one of which already has had a very difficult year.

I don’t know what to do anymore and needed to get it out. If you have any advice please help. Thank you.

3 Replies 3


Welcome to the forums, aj456.

We are so grateful that you've taken such a big and important step in sharing your thoughts and feelings here with our wonderful community. It sounds like you've been making some great achievements lately, including working hard in a job that you love, getting great grades and taking care of your body through exercise. We can only imagine how discouraging and disheartening hearing those words from your mother must be, and we are so sorry for the pain this must be causing. Please know that this is a safe and non-judgmental space for you to talk these feelings through and our community is here to offer as much support, advice and conversation as you need through this. 

We would also really encourage you to reach out to the kind counsellors at Kids Helpline. They are a confidential and anonymous, telephone and online counselling service specifically for young people aged 25 and under, and are available 24/7 on 1800 55 1800 as well as through webchat: https://kidshelpline.com.au/. We’d also welcome you to talk these feelings through with the counsellors at our Support Service, who are available 24/7 by phone on 1300 22 4636 or on Webchat 1pm-12am AEST on our website: www.beyondblue.org.au/getsupport.

We hope that you can find some comfort in the kindness and support from our community. We're all here for you.

Community Member


Thanks for your insightful post. I almost thought you were writing about me! I also have bickering parents who behave exactly like that. I have also had epilepsy for the last 5 years too and it was due to stress and not sleeping well too. The only difference is that I'm a guy lol. I really don't have much to offer as advice, but maybe some reassurance of your situation and that you are not alone.

I came to the forum to search up why my life is kinda messed up. I think understanding absentee fathers really helped me contextualize where I am in life. It feels like even getting D's and HD's don't matter (now that I'm finally passing exams at uni) when my family is messed up haha. I think I might talk to a psychologist about this, and hey, maybe it can help you too?

Sorry for not offering any real advice here, but I resonate with you and hope you keep strong. Talking really helps especially where these issues are usually stigmatised (at least in my community) and I guess my plan of attack to start talking seriously about my mental state with someone.

Community Champion
Community Champion

welcome aj456 and sm1451 and thanks for making your first posts and sharing your story.

You both have things in common and may able to help each other.

It is sad when the people who you expect to be there for you but they are critical.

I can understand that a parent would feel worried about a child having elipesy. It is hard when parents take out stresses on children rather than communicating how they feel.

Sophie has given suggestions that may help both of you. I understand reaching out to a help line may be hard but these services have trained people who will listen and offer support.

Feel free to keep posting here if it helps to write things down and share with others.