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Mom Called My Brother a Disappointment

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My mom has been telling people that my brother is a disappointment to her, and he has found out about it. He is obviously upset, and posted an obscene facebook message regarding this situation. They already have a very strained relationship (my mother was abusive while my siblings and I were growing up) How do I help my brother with the hurt that this has obviously caused him? Should I mention to my mother how wrong it was for her to say something like that? I’m just lost, I have no idea how I can help.

Mom Called My Brother a Disappointment

Answered by on -

A.

What a difficult situation! I would definitely support your brother and help him understand that abusive people thrive on provocation and conflict. The more people react, the more they give away their power. I would support him and perhaps consider seeing a family therapist together (you and your brother) to talk about the abuse from your mother, and how to support each other through your adulthood.

Family struggles in childhood do not have to be perpetuated throughout the lifespan. Perhaps by supporting each other you can transcend the early difficulties and find some detatchment from your mom while having a more rewarding relationship with each other.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral

Mom Called My Brother a Disappointment

Daniel J. Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP

Dan Tomasulo Ph.D., TEP, MFA, MAPP teaches Positive Psychology in the graduate program of Counseling and Clinical Psychology at Columbia University, Teachers College and works with Martin Seligman, the Father of Positive Psychology in the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) program at the University of Pennsylvania. He is Director of the New York Certification in Positive Psychology for the Open Center in New York City and on faculty at New Jersey City University. Sharecare has honored him as one of the top 10 online influencers on the topic of depression. For more information go to: http://www.dare2behappy.com/. He also writes for Psych Central's Ask the Therapist column and the Proof Positive blog.

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2018). Mom Called My Brother a Disappointment. Psych Central. Retrieved on April 19, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2011/11/09/mom-called-my-brother-a-disappointment/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.