Archive for May 10th, 2018

May 10, 2018

Readers respond about their parents

by Rod Smith

“I read your article to the lady who moved to be close to her mom and it struck a chord about taking on a role that is not yours to take on.

“In 1967 I was 12-years-old and my mom died of cancer. For the next three years I was a complete emotional crutch for my Dad. He battled to cope and I had to go everywhere with him. Every week we went to put flowers on the grave. I struggled to make friends and spent school holidays completely on my own all day. So, I actually completely missed the teenage fun years and the social interaction with my peers. When I was 16 he remarried but actually got angry because I preferred going to parties with friends and girls than helping him rebuild a car.”

Tony – Durban

“Thank you so much for your response to the letter about the mother. The relationship I have with mother is not healthy, she want to be a priority in my life over my children. Your response made it clear for me to understand what is happening and how to handle it by understanding my position and align my priorities in the right order. Thank you again, your column help a lot of people like me who need spiritual help in silence.”

Anon by request


May 10, 2018

To the daughter from yesterday’s column;

by Rod Smith

• You have taken on a role that’s not yours to take on. This is one of the reasons you will often read that people should resist making big decisions after a traumatic experience. You can comfort and support and love your mother without having to live near her or become her companion. Try to avoid caring too much. Yes, it is possible. You are “caring too much” if your caring for someone else consumes you.

• Your son, and not your mother, is your primary commitment. You will be better equipped to love and care for your mother when you re-align your priorities. It’s care first for yourself, then for your son, then for you mother. If you don’t take appropriate care of yourself you will not be able to care for anyone.  While you are attempting to rescue your mother you will be unable to care for your son in a healthy manner.

• Your mother (and you) will take years to be fully functional again. The ending of a fifty-year marriage will require much grief and understanding among all the members of your family. It is not surprising there are some boundary confusions at this stage of her journey. Adjust them now before they become even more entrenched and solidified