How to keep going and not feel worthless?

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Monty's Mom
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Date Joined Aug 2010
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   Posted 6/21/2011 7:02 AM (GMT -6)   
So my whole life has changed. Pain transformed me from a working mother of 2 to a stay-at-home mother of 2 dealing with daily pain. When they are on summer vacation, they get to see what life is really like for me from day to day. The fainting, the sweats, the struggle to continue to clean our home and some days, just get off the couch to get to the bathroom. It breaks me to see them worry about me. I am not used to being the weak one, but the strong one that everyone depended on to get things done.

School takes me so long. I type reclining when I can no longer sit up, but I know that no matter how fast I go it is still miles behind where I should be at this point. Plugging away is what I do best. I am not ready to give up and say that I am disabled permanently. I can hear and type, so with my medical background why shouldn't I work from home typing medical reports? First I have to finish. If I can't keep up with the schoolwork, how will I manage when it is my job?

Just when I thought I had things in balance the family drama hit. It was too much to take, constantly being wrong and reminded that I was worth less than my sisters. My mother's time was just too valuable to be wasted on taking me to appointments, although she would run my sisters anywhere. My sons were never behaved well enough, and she told my fiance that he was the best thing in our relationship and why would he marry me? I am obviously worth nothing to them, so I removed myself from the family. Why waste their precious time by forcing them to put up with me, right? Except I don't feel that way. I feel that they were wasting my valuable time with my new family by making me feel bad or less than they are. I am not less, and I am not better. I am just different. What is wrong with different?

But that carries over into my life with my family. My mother taught me as a child that your place in a family means everything. A person whose own sisters and mother want nothing to do with her is not worth the time of nurturing a relationship with. Obviously relationships mean nothing to me because I threw away my family, right? It is hard to see beyond that for people, to see that it takes quite a lot of abuse for someone to walk away from their family. People who know me understand. I don't usually discuss it with anyone. My fiance's family had to know because of the wedding and some are making a big deal out of it.

As if pain weren't enough, we are forced to deal with the rest of life's issues on top of it. Even a voluntary separation from family is difficult. I just don't know what to do. Caring for myself was never my strong point. Now I don't have a choice. Putting my physical needs above others is as struggle for me that I go through everyday. My crocheting helps greatly, unless I get in the mood I have been where I see no point in giving them to their intended people because they are worthless.

Help me family. Please. How do you stop yourself from feeling worth less than everyone else because of your pain, your inability to do what others do, or the abandonment and abuse you suffered in the past? I don't want to lose the family I have built around me ( and I consider friends as my family as well) over feelings of worthlessness and my changed circumstances. How do you find value in yourself in a world that values people based on their job title and amount of money they make?

left forum.
Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2010
Total Posts : 200
   Posted 6/21/2011 8:33 AM (GMT -6)   
Montys Mom,

I'm so so sorry you are feeling like this, but I can relate and I know how frustrating it is not to be able to do so many things you want to and are mentally able to, but physically not, but people still think you should be capable to do them so you look "lazy and like a failure". There will be some people that do understand though, so find those ones, they are keepers :)

You have so much to do and you are so strong, when you feel like you are worthless just remind yourself of your strength, think about if any of the people that make you feel worthless were in your position, how would they handle it, and I'm sure every time it will definitely not be as well as you!

Maybe you could talk to your family and just explain that it frustrates you but you are honestly trying your hardest, and explain everything you go through and actually how hard it is, they might just be having trouble understanding and it would be hard to, when you explain it I'm not sure if you have seen this before but you could use it to help explain how hard it is

If your family was willing could you all get family counsilling or even a pain psychologist that they could sit in on a session you have?

Sorry I can't really be of any help, but I'm here if you need to vent and remember we all understand exactly how you feel, you aren't alone and we will always be here :)

I hope you start to feel happier soon!

Love and hugs! :-)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 9664
   Posted 6/21/2011 9:02 AM (GMT -6)   
Buttercup sure said it good, but why are you letting them get to you???
Sometimes we just have to take things with a grain of salt, even if it's
from our family members...your worth more, you are special and I think
your a terrific person, doing all you can with young children...
People don't understand chronic pain cause they can't see it, so
that makes it all the more harder.... no your crocheting won't be perfect
but no ones is, (if it was perfect you'd be god) heck my cross stitching ain't perfect
and I do it because I enjoy it and I hope you realize your art does help
and your helping people with what you make, it's wonderful the way you make it
and I think it's great...
well wishes to you...

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Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 636
   Posted 6/21/2011 9:21 AM (GMT -6)   
I must agree that I often feel that way. It's very hard to go from "supermom" to almost doing nothing. My daughter is 13 and she doesn't get it. My family keeps there mouths shut but when my mother in law was alive I know she made comments. I am super lucky to have a great husband, but some days I wonder how much he is willing to take. I just try and keep my goals small, even if it takes 4 days to clean my bathroom, I can at least feel good that I got it done. Beyond that we have certain chores that we do together, that way I can still be part of getting thing done but I do the part that doesnt set my body off.

I always hope that one day I can increase my activity but we will just need to wait and see!

Big hugs, remember the members here are always willing to listen.

Post Edited (Shell74) : 6/21/2011 11:54:35 AM (GMT-6)

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 16284
   Posted 6/21/2011 10:25 AM (GMT -6)   
MM you really do have a lot going for you, you don't see it right now because of the cloudiness in your eyes. Need to shoo the clouds away somehow.

As for the abuse in the past professional help is an option and perhaps even getting help with the current family problems. Its always tough having to remove your family out of your life but there are many, many people out there just like you that have no other choice if they want to keep their sanity. This may sound selfish, but you have to think of yourself first in this situation. Are they really worth letting them tear you to pieces? By letting them do this it also affects your immediate family as well. Stop kicking yourself.

It sounds almost like your mother and sisters are very jealous of you. It is obvious with the pending wedding and all you are very happy about that and it sounds like they are such a miserable people that they want everyone around them miserable too. That type you do have to remove yourself from being around them.

Your kids are going to love you no matter what they see out of you. You don't have to be a super mom in order for your children to love you.

Take it a day at a time, sometimes, its a moment at a time and thats ok too. Be thankful you have the ability to crochet those shaws and remember the happiness it brings the other people. Same with your school, stay with it the best you can. Some days you will do better at it than others, but stay with it. Make it a goal to reach and keep.

Hang in there it could be a lot worse.
Moderator Chronic Pain Forum

Monty's Mom
Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 664
   Posted 6/21/2011 1:05 PM (GMT -6)   
I talked with my fiance again. We are sitting the boys down to discuss why children and adults all have chores in our home, again. He thinks we are at the ages of them beginning to push boundaries. They are just trying the pity party route to get me to cave. There is no caving because there are just things I can't do physically.

Thank you for the support. There have been a string of low days for me and combined with pain, depression can creep up on me quickly. I made myself another appointment for therapy and am dragging the family back for more next week. I can't force compassion into them, but I can make sure they see respect from me and hear someone else re-enforcing that.

There are clouds in my eyes....Too many tears with contacts in will do that to me. My professional help was the one that stood by me through turning away from my family when I made that choice. I guess as a mother myself I can't understand how a mother, no matter how bad, could blame their child for all their problems as mine is doing. Add to it that she seeks out my sons to remind them that I am crazy and ridiculous for turning away from a loving family. It makes me sick just thinking about it. My family was anything but loving! Straydog, I think you may be right on the jealousy idea. Looking at it from that perspective helps me feel less like it is my fault.

I may have too much on my plate for me to handle right now. Count in another ovary (I am on #3 on the right side) and the hormones that causes and it results in this blubbering thing I no longer resemble.
The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them. That's the essence of inhumanity. George Bernard Shaw

Pelvic adhesive disease, Irritable bowel syndrome, SI joint pain, arthritis, kidney stones, depression, 9 pelvic surgeries for pain, ovarian cysts, adhesions. Fentanyl patch, Vicodin, remeron, trazodone, dicyclomine, Miralax, Colace, Multivitamin.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 3193
   Posted 6/21/2011 2:27 PM (GMT -6)   
Hugs to you.  Hope you feel better.  Others have given you good food for thought... I wish there were some words of wisdom to help you feel better... but I do empathize w/ how you are feeling... having had my own set of stuff over the years.
Thinking of you.... --Tina

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 3557
   Posted 6/21/2011 3:09 PM (GMT -6)   
MM, sending you some hugs while you go through this difficult time with family, your kids, and pain levels...When it rains it pours some times:(

One of the sayings that I think holds true is "Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die"...

This is so true when we carry the hurts and pains from things said or only takes up room in our hearts where we could be putting love and joy..

Believe me...I can empathize with you as I have had an extremely difficult childhood with not only family but other terrible things that have happened...

For was finding God and finally being able to forgive...this does NOT mean means I let it go and release it from the hold on me...release the pain and don't let it take up any more of my time...I did this without every hearing or needing an "I'm sorry"...I didn't want it to be contigent on this...I wanted to forgive for myself...I was tired of carrying the hurt and anger as it was making me more sick...

Now...this took years of counseling, prayer, wonderful books, great friends, and lots of tears....but the day I finally let's amazing how much joy and love that has come into my life...I'm not saying that you are ready or have to do this right now...I'm just saying that there is a possibility to get to a place of healing...for you...

The thing to remember is that it's usually the people who we love that can hurt us the most...

And if we are waiting for them to say sorry, or change and treat us well...then we could waste years of our lives...that's why I let go so I can move on...with or without them...For me it actually worked out with reconciliation with my Mom and Dad...and if you had asked me 15 years ago that this was possible I would have laughed and said no way...

I also agree with others...that you may need to just keep certain toxic people out of your lives for now...there is nothing wrong with doing this when necessary...

Your health is first and foremost, and then your kids and fiance...It sounds like you are moving forward in a good way with laying down the law in the house with your kids...As well as seeking counseling...hopefully it can help the kids as well...but I'm praying that it will be of comfort to you..especially with helping so that it can be less stress for your pain levels...

I'm so glad that you can come here and get total love and acceptance...
Sending you some really big hugs (( ))
SB and "the pup who snores loudly" 
ACDF C5-C7, (no hardware), with autograft bone Nov. 2001
(reabsorption of bone 2 years later...still lost in body..expect to burp it out at anytime..haha")) 
ACDF with hardware, allograft bone Nov. 2005 
Anterior and Posterior CDF, allograft bone with BMP, removal of old hardware, use of titanium plates, rods, screws, & kitchen sink (lol) Oct 2006

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 16284
   Posted 6/21/2011 3:34 PM (GMT -6)   
MM there is no way I would let my children around your mother if she is running you down to them. Oh, that woman really has some issues and they are unhealthy ones. The best thing you could have done for you and your immediate family is to walk away. One day she may change but I would not bank on that happening nor would I spend my precious time worrying over it. Spend that time working on you and your family and enjoying life the best you can.

I cannot remember how old your kids are, but if I remember right they are old enough to start learning how to be responsible for things. Teaching them at home is the best starting point too. It will benefit them so much to learn while they are young. Do not crater and think you are the one that should be doing everything for them. Thats not good, I made that mistake with my first child and I really did her an injustice by doing that too. I made sure I did not repeat that mistake when I had my son.

Instead of worrying and dwelling over the problems with your mother and sisters, use that precious time and energy on yourself, you are more deserving than them.
Moderator Chronic Pain Forum

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 3557
   Posted 6/21/2011 4:32 PM (GMT -6)   
I just wanted to add how much I admire all those that are dealing with CP and taking care of children..I was not blessed to be able to have any due to my health...and besides my furry 75 pound doggy:)....I have a hard enough you all with kids and the daily hard work and stress that goes along with that on top of everything..You Rock!!! :)
SB and "the pup who snores loudly" 
ACDF C5-C7, (no hardware), with autograft bone Nov. 2001
(reabsorption of bone 2 years later...still lost in body..expect to burp it out at anytime..haha")) 
ACDF with hardware, allograft bone Nov. 2005 
Anterior and Posterior CDF, allograft bone with BMP, removal of old hardware, use of titanium plates, rods, screws, & kitchen sink (lol) Oct 2006

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 2261
   Posted 6/21/2011 11:44 PM (GMT -6)   
I have to agree with Snowbunny. I admire those of you that have chronic pain and children. Unfortunately, it wasn't meant to be for us, I guess, as my children are up in heaven. I really don't know how you do it. Some days I can hardly take care of myself and help take care of our two birds. You do rock!!!

MM I agree that you're better off with walking away from your family. than staying and getting more sick. Just worry about you, your children, and your fiance' and let them go. You'll be much better off in the long run.

love and soft hugs
Dx: osteoarthritis, bursitis in left hip, Osteoarthrits in right hip, compression fracture in thoracic spine due to falling on frozen ground March 2001 , ddd, spinal stenosis, bone spurs, osteoarthritis in spine, osteoarthritis in both knees
Meds: Fentanyl patch, oxycodone, otc: BenGay, Tylenol Arthritis on occasion

Screaming Eagle
Forum Moderator

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 5005
   Posted 6/22/2011 2:49 AM (GMT -6)   
Morning Mom!

I'm up to my old trick again...."Awake in the middle of the night"shakehead

You and I have had several discussions on this topic before, and I know that your still struggling with this family issue. It will be a slow process, but then again, one of these days a little light may click on, and you will see and understand the help and tools we have been offering here.

As I have said before, life is about relationships.... and how we react them. A person would like to think or at least believe that we are worthy of acceptance in some form or fashion, and the ultimate goal is to feel loved. The bitter truth is,... that,... will always be a struggle, because everyones values are different. CP.... certainly, can bring about, what may seem to be a disadvantage, but there are many other factors to be considered here as well.

As I read through several of your post...and I truly see a cycle going on here! are in bondage! You will never be free of that, until you decide you have had enough. It is one thing to say you have separated yourself from your family...but your mind is still wrapped in the chains of guilt and really...a sort of fear. Yes, we can add words like "Disappointment", "Anger"...and so on...but I really suspect "guilt" and "fear" are your mental enemies, at this point...because of the relationship to your mother. I have no doubt here, that your mother has gone way beyond her parental duty...(what ever that is)...and is really,..... and has become, a very controlling... self convicting, self righteous spirit if you will.

It is one thing to encounter a member of society like this, but it is so much easier to deal with them on an emotional level, than it is with a family member.

I also wanted to say that I have seen adult children spend a life time seeking approval from a parent, and never getting it in the end. Don't waste your time, or your families time doing this! I have actually witnessed cases where a parent passed before a child was released from this type of abuse, and sometimes, even then, they still suffered some sort of trauma from it. As long as you are stuck in this rut...they have control over you. You are sick...and don't need to add this problem to the mix. In many ways, it can be physically unhealthy for you as well. I personally have zero tolerance for anyone who belittles or berates a physically sick person.

Mindy, your mother going behind your back and bad mouthing you to your children, would be the last straw for most people. What kind of person would do something like that! I certainly would not take kindly to it, and again....I myself would end the relationship right then and there. Period! It speaks reams of her character! That type of person is mean spirited to the very core! You cannot change people can hope all you want, but it is a choice they will have to cannot force it.

Mindy you are on your own, and an adult. You have the privilege, and right to make up your own mind, and live life the way you want to. Here is one last little quote for you

Eleanor Roosevelt's famous self-esteem quote: "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent."

Take care, always a pleasure to visit with you! Bless you!...Bless you!

Hope you get to feeling better!

Moderator Chronic Pain Forum

Weekly Quote!

"Snowflakes are one of nature's most fragile things, but just look at what they can do when they stick together"

Post Edited (Screaming Eagle) : 6/22/2011 3:28:42 AM (GMT-6)

SE Sis
Regular Member

Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 61
   Posted 6/22/2011 8:23 AM (GMT -6)   
Dear Monty's Mom, I just wanted you to realized that you are very precious and very worth it!  God created you.  And for a reason.  So trust in that.  You are very precious to Him and worth it!!  I so understand your family issues as I've had some of the exact same things...I came to a place where I just take the good and blow off the bad...that's how I'm dealing with my family....but if you can't do that....then release them and know that what they say if not are so worth it... Hang in there my freind!  Blessings to you!

SE Sis
S1, L4-5, L3-4 Fusions, Rods & Screws inserted, bone chipped out for room for nerves. (May 10, 2010)
Right Hip Surgery to fix damage from Physical Therapy for my back. (2006)
Anxiety/Panic Attacks (started 2005)

Monty's Mom
Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 664
   Posted 6/22/2011 2:16 PM (GMT -6)   
That quote did it for me. I have it written down on note cards all over the house. This way, when I begin to feel small for whatever reason, I can look at a reminder that my focus and feelings for myself are mine to dictate, not the responsibility of others. Thank you.

SE sis, lahaina, Tina, straydog, Loretta and Snowbunny, Thank you for responding. You guys brought me to tears. It feels so good to be able to come here and have understanding without judgement. That is a very rare gift that you are all so wonderful at giving. Thank you.

Guilt is a major part of where I am right now. I don't want to live with it anymore. God has helped in so many ways with what has happened to me over the last 3 years. There are times where I still feel unworthy of Him even. Working on that is going to be rough, but I think that giving him the guilt and fear when it comes and nurturing forgiveness in myself at every moment of doubt will be the way to go for now until things get better.

One step at a time, right? So what if I don't clean today or do more than shower, at least I got up. At least I am interacting with my family and here to support their needs an my own instead of hiding away. I have some friends that understand well, mostly from church, and they are very positive. It gets bad when I have spent a few weeks alone because of mobility issues.

For Loretta and Snowbunny, thank you for thinking moms and dads with chronic pain rock. I really needed that. I will remember that when I feel bad for not doing what they wanted because at least I am doing something.

Straydog, I am not and will not allow my children to be around my mother. That began near Easter. She will "accidentally" run into them or try to see them at the pool when I am not there. They both leave her alone and interact as little as possible without being outright rude or mean, but most of the time end up leaving when she tries to talk to them. It still gets me that after her daughter refusing to have a relationship with the family, she still thinks that I am being ridiculous and a spoiled brat without evaluating the possibility that my feelings are valid. Guess that just goes to show why the separation occurred.
The light bulb just went on idea
Why am I feeling bad from losing a family that doesn't care enough about me to show me respect? Even the respect of just understanding that I want nothing to do with them and to leave us alone? DUH. Waste of time and energy better put to caring for myself and family.
Thanks everyone for helping. Its going to take a long time for complete change, but its coming along. We are all works in progress, right? And when you think you have it all worked out and things get comfy, a curveball hits you and changes everything.
Bless you all for being such good friends.
The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them. That's the essence of inhumanity. George Bernard Shaw
Pelvic adhesive disease, IBS, SI pain, arthritis, kidney stones, depression, 10 pelvic surgeries for pain, ovarian cysts, adhesions, endometriosis, adenomyosis, and possible ovarian remnant syndrome. Unexpectedly growing ovary #3 on right side.
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