Dear Jane, Mommy Dearest Anxiety
After not seeing my mother for over a year, she’s now planning on coming to visit since we’re all fully vaccinated. At first, I was excited at the thought of seeing her in-person but that quickly faded when the memories of her constant judgment came flooding back.
Our phone calls have been nice because I’m able to keep them short and sweet by opting to have to go when she starts to pick at me and my life choices. My mom did the best that she could raising three children on her own but her constant judgment and reminders that she gave up her life for ours gets tiresome.
What should be a joyous time of us reuniting is just stressing me out. I feel super anxious about her upcoming visit and even started to get tension headaches. I find my mind racing in anticipation of having to deal with her for an extended period of time.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my mother, but how do I deal with her anxiety-inducing antics?
– Anxiously Waiting for Mom
Let go of what doesn’t serve you – like internalizing your mother’s criticism. Remember, her judgment is a reflection of how she feels about herself, not about your worthiness.”
Dear Anxiously Waiting for Mom,
The mother and daughter relationship is a complex one for sure. It sounds like your mom may feel like she missed out on realizing her own dreams because she had to raise you and your siblings on her own. But that isn’t your fault and it’s definitely not a valid reason to criticize your life choices because they differ from how she wanted her own life to turn out.
More likely than not, it’s her subconscious way of projecting her feelings of having missed out onto you and she probably isn’t even aware of how it’s making you feel. But don’t fret, whether she’s aware or not, I have a few ways for how you can deal with her anxiety-inducing antics.
Ease Your Anxiety and Stress
First, stock up on a few 24 Hour Magic bundles that have both Hello Mellow capsules and Nighty Night capsules, potentially allowing you to ease your anxiety both day and night.
The Hello Mellow capsules won’t just make you feel good, but it may also help you let go of what doesn’t serve you – like internalizing your mother’s criticism. Remember, her judgment is a reflection of how she feels about herself, not about your worthiness.
The Nighty Night capsules are a melatonin-free, non-habit forming sleep aid that may help you get a calm and peaceful night’s sleep so that you can wake up refreshed and rejuvenated. Having a clear and calm mind is the foundation for easing stress, anxiety, and tension headaches.
Create Healthy Boundaries
Instead of having her come visit for an unknown amount of time, make sure that there’s a definite end date for her visit. Make it an amount of time that you’re truly comfortable with, one week, two weeks, or maybe it’s just for a long weekend.
Take intentional time away from your mother while she’s visiting. Schedule daily walks, exercise, meditation sessions, or whatever you enjoy doing that’s away from her so you can take her in healthy doses without feeling overwhelmed by her presence.
When she starts to judge or to criticize you casually change the subject and respectfully choose not to engage in the conversation. You’re allowed to choose which conversations to take part in and which conversations to exit.
Jane is the fictional heroine of the Betoken lifestyle blog, Good For Jane. Think of Jane as your virtual BFF. She lives a healthy lifestyle, but not like, over the top. When it’s not a pandemic, she loves hanging out with her friends, dating, and exercising in public. Throughout the pandemic she has baked her fair share of sourdoughs, gotten more than her fair share of takeout to “support her local restaurants”, ordered wine online and taken plenty of CBD to keep the anxiety at bay.
Jane is also the editor of the Dear Jane column. If you have a question for Jane, you can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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