Yes. Decide you want your simplified, beautiful, gorgeous home more than you’re afraid of the guilt-ridden, demoralizing, relationship-ending fight that will probably happen before you move out.
This job of mine at Bed Bath and Beyond couldn’t be better. I’m constantly around pretty things. I can imagine all the stuff people buy being placed in their organized, lovely homes. It’s amazing.
And then there’s the flip side: some days I feel even worse about my situation, even more stupid for staying in it, and even more sure that I couldn’t tell anyone about it because they’d think I was really stupid for not moving out long ago. Unless they’ve been in a situation similar to this, they will not understand it in the least.
If you look at a lot of the customers and see their attitudes and the stuff they buy (like actual 84” beautiful $79 drapes for their LAUNDRY ROOM, or a bunch of stuff for THEIR OTHER HOME OUT EAST), you can tell that they wouldn’t even put up with a hoarding mother for a minute. If they were transplanted into my life for one day they would be like “WTF, I’m moving out, lady. Immediately if not sooner, and no one’s stopping me!”
I can just tell, they would have never let things get to this point. They would have seen the signs (over-protective mother, guilt-tripping her daughter into missing out on a long list of things in her life, depriving her of a bedroom, depriving her of a quiet sanctuary of a home, making her sleep on a couch for the majority of her life…) and had the audacity to do the normal thing ~ the right thing ~ grow up and get a life.
Why am I not one of those people? Am I too nice? Or am I just lacking in courage?
I am letting these women in my life get to me. Their attitudes, their way of life, their constant bickering, their total insanity… it’s all so familiar to me now… I hope I never lose sight of normalcy even though I’ve never experienced it.
First of all, I’m sorry you’re in my exact situation. My grandma is a very dominant, manipulative and controlling person as well ~ seems to be a trait of hoarders in general. Isn’t it horrible to be in a family like ours and have no (easy) way out? It seems absolutely impossible. And as their daughter/granddaughter, don’t you just feel like you’re SOMEHOW responsible for figuring their lives out for them because they’ve proven year after year they’re incapable of doing so for themselves?
Right now it’s like my mom is trying to save my grandmother, I’m trying to save my mom, and interestingly enough NOBODY is volunteering themselves to save me.
I wish you all the best. xo
So sorry we’re both in the same situation. You are at least ten years younger than me and are much more aware of the situation than I was at your age. (Honestly I didn’t know hoarding was even a thing until I saw it on Oprah when I was like 18 or something.) So even though I wasn’t able to do this yet, here’s my advice to you: start saving $ right now. As much as you can, consistently. Then bide your time over the next three years… (as much as you can, get together with your friends at their house, and if they wonder why you never have them over, explain everything to one of your very good friends.) Plan on getting into a college that’s out of state or at least fifty miles away. Then run for your life and have confidence in yourself that you can run away, guilt-free, and have a beautiful life of your very own. xo
Thank you my dear. You too. xo
Totally. I haven’t even made any attempts at moving on with my life (except once when I caused a huge fight because I looked into details of an apartment building a few miles away), and I already feel tremendous guilt. My mom has major separation issues with me and is incredibly over-protective. I’ve allowed it to get to the point where she basically can’t do anything without me and even though I want to get on with my own life, and quit enabling her, I can’t imagine actually doing it. The guilt would literally kill me… it already sort of is. I wish you the best in your situation… it’s seems impossible but remember that the guilt we’re feeling is completely unnecessary. It’s our right to claim the life we dream for ourselves, not to fix other people’s problems and secure their happiness in replacement of ours.
I know. It just seems impossible. And my greatest fear is that in five or ten years nothing will get better for anyone. I keep telling myself that thing will get better, that I’m strong enough to make things better, that I will get out of here, but you know what? I’m turning 25 tomorrow. And then next year I’ll be 26. And then I’ll be that weird person that no one likes who still lives at home at 35 and doesn’t have any friends and is sort of aimless and when will it ever end? I’ve got old parents, and a 85 year old grandmother. It’s only a matter of time before something horrible happens to one of them whether it’s sickness or an accident, and I can’t sit around here and watch that happen. No one around here is ever going to change, no one will ever be happy, no one feels sorry enough for themselves to get up and change things.
Having a bad day, can you tell? Also I’m no doctor but I’m more than certain now that my mom has bi-polar and my grandmother has asperger’s. It’s not possible that they don’t.
Last week I had to bring the furnace man downstairs. It was freezing in our house and because no one has had it cleaned since it was installed we HAD to have him in. I went in the bathroom and cried my eyes out when he left. Of all the embarrassing moments in my life, this one had to be the top of the list. Embarrassing isn’t even the right word. Mortifying. That’s better.
This made me cry and I thank you so so much for your kindness. Best of everything to you.
Thank you for your message and for your support :) I continue to brainstorm ways of doing those things you mentioned, but even the smallest attempts of leaving this place end in total disaster. Mom flipped out completely earlier this summer when I seriously talked with her about moving into an apartment that was actually affordable for me. Why do I care if she flips out? I don’t know. I really don’t know. Anyway, thanks for writing xo