Posted by: Judy | June 28, 2013

Melt down…

NM is desperately trying to control me, and I am stubbornly refusing to oblige.

The A/C was failing. Okay, it was working but making a terrible racket. (Side note: I hate that racket means both noise and a tennis implement.)

In the past. NM harangued me if I used a single unit on the stove for five minutes to make a grilled cheese sandwich. This past week, she cooked apples and cake in the heat of the day. She justifies the apples by saying that she’s cooking them in the microwave so it doesn’t generate heat. I don’t know how she doesn’t feel the heat, particularly since she insists on allowing the apples to cool before putting them in the fridge. Yeah, I can’t figure the logic on that one either. The cake simply HAD to be done. She will cook beans in the oven for hours. Most of her cooking is done in the afternoon and evening, the highest electrical uses times. Then she will complain that the electrical bill is high because I insist on the house being kept at a reasonable temperature. Yes, it’s all my fault.

When the A/C quit, I reminded myself it is not my job to police what goes on in the house. I did not interfere in the repair of the A/C, except it wasn’t repaired. I grumbled that the repairman didn’t even turn the A/C on to check if it was working, though it would have sounded fine at first. I called the company back myself and told them it was still rattling. What do I hear from NM? “I wish you’d come out and taken care of it when he was here.”

Yes, I exploded. “I’m not a mindreader.”

Alone in my room, I roared, “It isn’t my fault!”

That’s what the whole nightmare week was about. NM was doing everything within her powers to control me. I was fighting to ignore her and maintain my autonomy. Having things pinned on me that were completely out of my control and totally within hers… She abdicated, again, and blamed me for things not working out the way she thought they should. Horrors: I did not smooth everything over and make everything magically perfect.

I did, however, call the A/C company and tell them it wasn’t fixed. He came back and, yes, fixed it.

No, I did not do it for them. I did it for me.

It still wasn’t my fault anything went wrong.

Something I like about myself: The repair guy started and I told him how to open the refrigeration unit. I realized I was trying to control him. I said, “I’m sorry. You don’t need me to tell you how to do your job. It isn’t fair for me to take out my frustration on you because I was blamed for things I didn’t do.” The guy was very nice and said that each company did things differently, giving me an out and changing the entire tone of our interaction.


  1. I can’t even imagine what goes through you mother’s head when she bakes a cake in the heat. Narcissists are so weird.

    • Yes, they are.

  2. I like the last part of your post, about how much differently you do things from your NM. I’ve had to “unlearn” how to control people like that too. It seems there are so many things we have to focus on so many different planes with narcissism (unlearn the old habits, realize our fleas, continue to fight against the narcs for our own lives).

    It can take the patience of a saint to ignore someone who is purposely trying to get a rise out of you. To ignore the jabs and pokes and continue on with your own path. I think you did really well.

    And I’m glad your A/C is fixed!

    • Thanks, Jessie!

  3. Hurrah for reasonable repair people that make a situation more pleasant for everyone. Sorry the first guy didn’t get it done. Happy to hear the AC is working. Bummer on the mother being on a control rampage.

    • First and second guy were the same guy. Difference? I let him hear the problem and do his job without input from me. A/C is a wonderful thing. Control freaks are not wonderful things. :-/

  4. That was wonderful you were able to be aware of your own behaviours and connect it to how you were feeling about NM. Your kindness to the guy went a long way.

    Glad it got fixed. Stay cool :). xxoo

    • Thanks ((TR)) I’m truly grateful for A/C. 🙂

  5. Glad the A/C is fixed; maybe things will calm down for a while. (rolls eyes)

    Do these narcs all work on some central clock? My NM has been on a control rampage lately, too! The things they do are so illogical and contradictory that you feel as if your head is going to explode, and then they blame YOU and wonder why YOU haven’t made their lives more perfect than anyone’s ever has been or will be.

    In your case, it’s interesting how it’s their house, but they expect you to handle the repairs. In mine, it’s my job, but either I never do it right or she sucks away so much of my time on her emergency-first-priority-du-jour that I don’t have enough left over for my legitimate responsibilities. Then when she finally realizes something’s been left hanging, she claims that I’d never get anything done without her pushing me.

    • I too have wondered if the Ns are somehow synchronized. 🙂

      We’ll keep fighting the good fight.

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