Psychiatry & Psychology--General/Please help thanks

Advertisement


Question
Did I overreact with what I said.

Today my mom (age 87) decided to switch the coats in the coat closet, putting the spring/summer coats on the side of the closet easier to get to for the coats and put the winter coats on the other side of the closet.

About an hour ago she asked me about four pairs of gloves that were on one of the shelves of the coat closet. She said "There are two gloves that dont have mates" I said to her "The rest of my gloves pairs and all are in the suitcase in your closet". She then said "Oh, so then I can put them up in the closet, or should I throw them out". This got me mad and I said to her she has no right to say "or should I throw them out, they are my possessions".

You see right away I kept thinking would she say that to me about my clothes if she had access to them.

Would you think she was including clothes or did I overreact. Keep in mind she does not or ever will have access to my clothes.


This was in the coat closet we both share. However, these gloves were not in my coat pocket they were on the shelf in the coat closet.

But what goes thru my mind is "what if" type of question. What if my clothes were in the closet we both have access to then what. My clothes are in tip top condition and I love all of them and I would be very upset if she asked me what she asked me about the gloves.

Answer
Dear Debbie,

Thank you for writing.

There is a traditional prayer that is said at the beginning and ending of 12 step groups.  It goes like this:
God, Grant Me the Serenity
To Accept the things I cannot Change
The Courage to change the things I can
and the Wisdom to know the difference.

In the situation you describe, there is only one thing that you have the power to change.  That one thing is your Response.  The one thing you cannot change is what your mother says, what ways she says things, and in what manner.  So, what response would you believe works best?  In this case, I recommend ignoring the comment.  Anything else would seem to only escalate the situation, pushing you further and further into an area where you have no control.

Make sense?

Here is more information on how to accept things you cannot change.

Stress Management, How to Reduce, Prevent, and Cope with Stress
http://www.helpguide.org/mental/stress_management_relief_coping.htm

Recognizing and Overcoming Dysfunctional Families
http://www.twu.edu/downloads/counseling/E-5_Dysfunctional_Families_-_Recognizing


Kindest Regards,

Monique Thompson LPC
www.northdallascounselor.com

Psychiatry & Psychology--General

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Monique

Expertise

I specialize in treatment for survivors of sexual trauma. My clinical work has also included work with sex offenders. This has afforded me with the unique exposure helpful in gaining a better understanding of this particular cycle of abuse. I welcome your questions on this subject matter.

Experience


Past/Present Clients
Consultant for Southern Methodist University
Adjunct Faculty Member of Brookhaven Community College

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.