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My Mom Causes Me Distress and I Don’t Know Who’s Fault It Is

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I feel like there are a lot of problems between me and my mom and I tend to blame her for a lot of it. She often makes me feel overwhelmed for example I feel like she asks too much of me. I’m the oldest of five and she has me parent my younger siblings by having me discipline them, babysit them a lot, use me to threaten them “if you don’t stop I will make sister come in and stop you”, she has me cook them food, get them in the car, pretty much anything she doesnt do falls on me she handles cleaning and some parenting but she handles mostly only the things she wants to do. Another thing is she uses me a lot for advice and counseling if she is insecure she comes to me if she needs dating advice she comes to me. Most the time she won’t specifically ask for it she will just start making accusations which causes me to feel the need to correct her. For example she will often claim that I love my dad more, “I know where your loyalties lie”, I must be a horrible parent, I can’t do anything right, you always criticize me, and other variants of the same idea. Usually I will call her out and tell her thats not true, give her reasons why, mostly I counsel her. I believe she couldn’t fully function with out someone to lean on aka me. When she is dating soneone I tend to hear less from her about her problems and feeling and so does her ex (my dad). Its funny though she likes to claim she is a strong independent women but she couldn’t support herself without the people who are currently in her life but she wont recognize those people and often treats them with disrespect. She tries too hard to be my friend and worries too much about my siblings and I liking her that I feel she is failing as a parent. She also hardly ever takes responsibility for the important things she doesn’t admit to herself real problems like she wont admit her fault in my parent’s divorce she thinks she did everything right she will apoligize for things like when she yells at me but she does it too often and never changes her behavior it starts to feel like she does it to heal her pride and confidence but maybe its just maybe I need to forgive her but its so hard especially when I get contradicting stories from my divorced parents my mom puts all the blame on my dad. My dad takes the blame equally he knows he screwed up and he doesn’t try to blame it on my mom he knows divorce is rarely one sided and recognizes although my mom wasn’t the right person for him to marry it was his decision to marry and have kids with her. Me and my mom fight a’lot its been worse lately I have lost a lot of respect for her and I’m tired of not being able to control my feelings. I struggle to know how I feel about thi. Whenever I talk about my mom problems I feel even more lost than before. I dont want to have any negative feelings for my mom I wish I could just forgive and forget but we always seem to end up in the same place she thinks I don’t like her and I think she doesn’t like me even though I try really hard to be respectful and just push through but I find myself getting overwhelmed and upset by the things she does. All the time she makes me question myself it’s hard for me to say flat out that my mom hurts me yet I feel like she does and I feel like I have little control in how I react to her the little things she does stack up like her ignoring me and suddenly all the things I have ever been upset with her about come flooding out I want it to stop sometimes I wonder if there is actually a problem between us or if its just me being difficult. (From the USA)

My Mom Causes Me Distress and I Don’t Know Who’s Fault It Is

Answered by on -


Since you are still in high school and these issues with your mom have been around for long time I believe you will need someone to help you sort it through. This isn’t a one-time fix — where you ask for help and you do one thing and it changes. This is something you will need help with from people outside your family. They will help you figure out some strategies of coping with your mom, and developing a plan for the future.

I would talk to you high school guidance counselor about what is happening and ask what resources are available for you for some counseling. Many schools in your area have people they use who can help students with issues going on at home.

Reaching out to us here was a great first step — and I would encourage you to take the next step and ask your counselor at school to help you go to the next step.

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

My Mom Causes Me Distress and I Don’t Know Who’s Fault It Is

Therapists live, online right now, from BetterHelp:

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: He also writes for Psych Central's Ask the Therapist column and the Proof Positive blog.

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2018). My Mom Causes Me Distress and I Don’t Know Who’s Fault It Is. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 3, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 20 Jan 2018)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.