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Keeping up with the Joneses
in MoneySaving mums
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It's equally possible that they have far more debt, or other underlying issues, or indeed that they are better off because they have received generous financial gifts, or an inheritance, from their parents.
It does sound as though your mum is picking particularly successful (in her eyes) to compare you with. Is it possible that she is also judging herself? Feeling that she has to compete with her friends and their children ? Which is hard for you to cope with, but might help you put it into perspective .
I agree with this one!
If not i can only assume your mother was particularly helpful to you when you left home? If she wasnt, it sounds like genuine 'arent they lucky'?
I have some lovely friends who, no matter what my mood or situation, always lift my mood after seeing them - and we always say that its a two-way thing.
In contrast I find some people are like the Dementors in Harry Potter. According to Wiki - Dementors gradually drain human minds of happiness.... consume the emotions and good memories of human beings, forcing the victim to relive its worst memories alone.
They can't help it, so just try to avoid the 'Dementors', and if you can't fully avoid them, make sure you're scheduled to meet up with one of your lovely friends or do an activity you like afterwards, to boost you up again.
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If you think it is not accidental then maybe just tell your mum that you do not want to discuss the neighbours/whomever and change the topic of conversation. If that doesn't work, leave the room briefly (you can just say "excuse me a mo..." then go - no need to say more) and then start a new conversation when you come back in. She can't affect you if she is talking to the air!
Good luck and remember there's no reason to compare yourself to other people.
Seriously? I find that very sad.
And also that she measures success in life by the display of material wealth and that extends to a 'competition' in her social circle about how "well" their offspring are doing, which is her issue not yours to share. Essentially the two of you don't share the same values. It's understandable that even as an adult you want her approval but some of us have to accept that we simply won't get it from our parents, no matter what we do.
But that doesn't mean just accepting her comments and put downs. One of the most important things I've had to learn is that I cannot change the behaviour and thinking of my family & other people in my life, all I can do is adjust my own behaviour & control my reactions. Funnily enough, in changing my own responses, I found it wrong footed them and changed the whole dynamic. It has not changed their opinions necessarily but it has changed what & how they say things to me. It's also helped me let it go when they do revert to type. You'll need to experiment to find what works for you in this interaction with your Mum (my most successful tactic with older siblings was actually shutting up rather than arguing back or defending myself - cue some awkward silences!). - in other words what Katsu suggested - !
Sorry for all the cod psychology but this approach has really helped me over the years.
I find it a self defense mechanism. People aren't pleasant to be with just because you are related to them.