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  • angry at mom

    Hi, my grown son is a relatively new SCI and, while it seems that he is adjusting, he is angry with me. We used to be close, but now everything I say or do is wrong, and he says things to me that he would never have said before his injury. He is in counseling, but it seems that the longer he goes to counseling the worse he gets. Also, he is picking up an attitude that the world owes him. I have been walking on eggshells, and our relationship is strained. I don't know what to do. Does anyone have any idea why he is angry with his mother who had nothing to do with his accident? And what can I do about it?

  • #2
    Mom 5, Maybe the best thing to do would be to ask him if you could join him in a counciling session, or see the therapist on your own if he doesn't seem so inclined. It helps sometimes to have a mediator and to learn how to respond. Sounds like he is maybe taking his anger out on an available target? I think sometimes our well-meaning assistance can be disconcerting to say the least. Try not to take it too personal and get help so your relationship can go forward. It's great that he is in counciling, it takes a while to adjust to new circumstances. Good luck. Debra

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    • #3
      Hi, Mom5 - So many reasons why he could be lashing out at you, not that any of them are excusable. Was he living on his own pre-accident? Moving home with mom again can be such a blow to a young man's sense of independence. And having mom 'do' for him like he was a little kid again, after being a man. Add to that his anger over his SCI and his own grief and loss, and you have the perfect formula for blowups at whoever happens to be around.

      Went through the same thing with my son - I finally told him that since it didn't appear that he gave a s**t about me, I would just act as his aide, make sure his physical needs were taken care of, and just not spend any time with him. It worked. It was horribly painful for me to deal with, as Matt and I had gotten very close during the time he was in acute care and rehab, and then after he had been home a while, he just shut down emotionally where I was concerned.

      It's good that he's going to counseling, and as lilsis suggested, perhaps some family sessions are in order. You absolutely have the right to not be abused, even if it's 'only' verbal abuse, and if you feel ready, perhaps a 'come to Jesus' talk with your son, to let him know how it's affecting you, and what you will and will not put up with.

      I'd also push him to do as much as he can by himself - you haven't said what level he is, or what functions he's able to perform on his own. Push him to the max, even if he gets whiney, and don't become his personal slave.

      And keep checking in here, you'll find all the support in the world here!

      _____________
      Tough times don't last - tough people do.
      _____________

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      • #4
        Is your son showing his anger at you because you're the only 'safe' person he can unload on and know you'll still love him?

        '...he says things to me that he would never have said before his injury.' Of course he's angry at the world, but to take on the world is overwhelming, so he takes on you instead. I'd call him on the abusiveness tho. You diidn't tolerate such behavior before and aren't going to now. There's no way he can justify such behavior, nor should you.

        It sounds like you're stumbling along in the right direction. You're on a hard path and there's rough spots. It helps to be here, knowing others have gone before you. Good luck and take care of yourself.

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        • #5
          mom5: You have my sympathies, and your son's behavior is not atypical. This is going to take time and how long this will last is difficult to know. I wish there was a way that one could facilitate or speed up the process so your son would not be so angry. Moms are always there through the good times and the bad.

          Best wishes.

          PN
          The test of success is not what you do when you are on top. Success is how high you bounce when you hit the bottom
          --General George Patton

          Complex problems need to be solved collectively.
          ––Paul Nussbaum
          usc87.blogspot.com

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          • #6
            Thanks for the replys. Everything that all of you wrote rings true. In acute care and rehab, he didn't want me out of his sight. Now he's mad at me alot. I do less and less as he gets stronger. He is a para, but he had so many other injuries he was totally dependent for quite a while. Now, I don't help unless he asks. I know this is horribly hard for him, but I feel hurt that he's taking it out on me. I did tell him how I felt and he is a little better, but I can tell he is still angry at me. I guess we will muddle through it somehow.

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            • #7
              Mom5,
              I also think you're on the right track. It would seem that the fact that he's getting help means that he must feel part of what you are feeling. It's good for him and will be good for you. It's hard for a grown-up son who has survived adolescence to have to start all over again. Our son was 13 at the time of the accident and perhaps the normal adolescent conflict over independence helped him to attain his. It certainly forced him to mature overnight. The fact that your son is a para will work to his benefit (and your benefit too). It's got to be incredibly frustrating for him to have to learn everything all over again - from toileting to dressing to dealing with friends and girlfriends - not to mention mothers too.
              Hang in there,
              Carl

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              • #8
                After my 21 year old son's accident he started trying to take his frustrations out on me. (I am a nurse and have dealt with many frustrated patients.) I told him that I was there to help him and not to be verbally abused and even walked out of his room and left him to fend for himself several times. This may sound cruel, but it worked. He had to understand that just because I am his mother does not mean that I "have to" help him. It has been 16 months and to this day he thanks me when I help him.

                In our small town there is another quad (26 yrs old) who cussed his mom, bit her, spit on her, and eventually about drove her to a nervous breakdown. He is currently in a nursing home because his family just could not cope any longer. It is so sad. Families must be strong and demand respect from their children no matter what their situation may be.

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                • #9
                  You also never mentioned what types of drugs he is on. I know that when I was on high doses of baclofen I was angry and paranoid to the point I accused my wife of trying to poison me. Thank God I was able to stop taking that medicine.

                  His being in counseling will help his grieving. The devastation of his injury is certainly taking its toll on his independent mindset. I am sure that once he gets over his loss and gets off any drugs that could be contributing to his attitude you will once again having a loving relationship with him.

                  "And so it begins."
                  "And so it begins."

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                  • #10
                    Im wondering about a drug interaction too. I have several acquaintances who used lyrica, and all stopped because of explosive episodes or panic attacks. another drug was some kind of medicine for blood pressure. when my friend started cussing her attentants' out, they all knew it had to be the new medication they were trying. it was sudden, within a day of starting this medication. does he know about care cure forum?

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                    • #11
                      Note that this thread is 5 years old....

                      (KLD)
                      The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

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                      • #12
                        But its all so relevent, no matter how old it is. Ive been going thru the same thing with my son and our relationship feels so fragile right now. Im so glad to hear others express the same experiences that he and I are going thru. Even logically knowing the anger "makes sense", if anything like this can make sense, and knowing I shouldln't take it personally, it still hurts and it is good to know others have survived it.

                        <What a roller coaster ride - > Nothing prepares you for this, does it.

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                        • #13
                          No Nancy nothing could possibly prepare you for this ..... it's so sad that even though this thread is 5 years old not much has changed ... people are still dealing with similar circumstances and some of these situations become "classic".

                          And please don't misunderstand that I'm saying that there hasn't been any progress in the research or in the science regarding sci - there absolutely has - all I'm saying is that the problems people face while learning to live with it are universal and will continue to need to be supported .. while we all wait for the allusive cure !

                          ... and in the mean time that's what we're here for ....

                          Obieone
                          Last edited by Obieone; 12-01-2008, 09:52 PM. Reason: Spelling .... just being picky!
                          ~ Be the change you wish to see in the world ~ Mahatma Gandi


                          " calling all Angels ...... calling all Angels ....walk me through this one .. don't leave me alone .... calling all Angels .... calling all Angels .... we're tryin' and we're hopin' cause we're not sure how ....... this .... goes ..."
                          Jane Siberry

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                          • #14
                            We lash out at those we love the most. Dealing with a new injury takes a few years to adjust.
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                            Thanks!

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                            • #15
                              How old is your son.? Mine is 23 injured april 10,2008 quad. Oh he takes everything out on me. Sometimes i blow up on him but mostly i just ignore him. Its because he can if you know what i mean. He has to vent his anger at someone and mom is safe. My sons injury is new so he is working through allot of new feelings that he has never had to deal with before.

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