NEW DAY NEW LESSON » communication, Elderly, Lesson of the Day, Poetry, The Gallery, Writing Workshop » Everyone Has Their Issues They Need To Work Through

Everyone Has Their Issues They Need To Work Through

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This post is not usually the type I write on my blog. If my writing has to do with someone else’s feelings and emotions, I usually out of respect for them choose not to post about it on my blog unless they agree to it.

I decided to make the exception with this post because I have found that my inability to cope with someone who has a very negative frame of mind has really been troubling me.

People generally prefer to be around others who lift them up and make them feel good about themselves and about life in general. So what happens when you have an obligation to a family member? At what point is your own mental well being and sanity more important than your obligation? I don’t have the answer and I wouldn’t mind feedback.


Why are you so negative?

Why do you try to bring me down?


Maybe you are not really trying to bring me down

as much as you are trying to lift yourself up.

You are sinking and you grasp at

anything in your reach.

You are like a drowning woman trying to climb

on top of her rescuer in order to save herself,

when in essence it is both of you

who will end up going down.


You have had a hard life.

Though it could have been much worse.

You are not alone. There are people who care.

You have a child, grandchildren and great grandchildren.

You had beauty, humor, a lovely voice and amazingly creative hands.

In this picture you were 3 years younger than I am now.


What a waste.

How sad.

Your talents squandered by self pity and self involvement.


Depression grabbed hold of you decades ago and has not loosened it’s grip since.

But you fight it not.

You just sink into despair.


You want closeness, but your words and actions push away those you wish to have closer.

You want the warmth of human touch but when an innocent child approaches,

When she come to you with unconditional love,

You get angered and push her away.

Not realizing that she is there to give you something, not to take anything away.


There are moments when I glimpse

What you once were and what you might have been.

These are moments when you let happiness in.

When you accept love, when you laugh or you smile.

When you sing and sink into the passion of the music and the moment.


You wait for your end.

Yet you are afraid of goodbyes.

A tortured soul.

A tortured life.


I wish I could be kinder to you and be less affected by your crying and moods.

I have no excess energy to avoid being pulled down.

So at times I stay away because the emotions are too great.

You have your lessons to learn and I have mine.

Perhaps we are both failing because maybe some of our lessons are intertwined.


I pray that you learn what it was you came here to learn.

I pray you find peace and forgive me for failing you.


Fast Tube by Casper


I know that everyone has to learn their lessons on their own but it is so hard to watch someone be negative over and over again and not have any interest in change. How do you deal with situations like this?




This post was inspired by the prompt of “Emotions” at The Gallery Week 17 run by Tara at Sticky Fingers.

This blog post was written for writing workshop #29 run by Josie at Sleep is for the Weak. I chose the prompt emotions.

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I am me and also lots of other things like a wife, a mother, a daughter, a sister, a daughter in law, a sister in law, a friend, an oncology nurse, a blogger, a life coach in training, an avid book reader, a chauffeur, a chef, a shopper, a maid and on some days a bit overwhelmed. On this blog I share my journey of striving to see the best in everyone and everything. Strive, because I don't always manage to. Yup, I am human. I would love to have you join me in learning lessons in positivity from life.

Filed under: communication, Elderly, Lesson of the Day, Poetry, The Gallery, Writing Workshop · Tags: , , ,

48 Responses to "Everyone Has Their Issues They Need To Work Through"

  1. debbie says:

    this was a beautiful post. I went through this with my grandmother..I was not as involved.. but I remember back and the negativity is what comes to mind. Thats so sad!!!!

    1. Susie says:

      Thank you. It’s not easy and very draining.

  2. I don’t have the answer, when someone in my life started acting in a negative way I cut them out of my life. Drastic you might think but it was needed in my situation.

    I think that the only thing you can do is what you are doing, and I think you are doing it well.

    1. Susie says:

      I think it depends on who it is and what their motive is. Here it is sad because it is depression and fear and sadness motivated.

  3. Vegemitevix says:

    Oh Susie honey, I know how hard it would have been for you to write this. I completely understand. My elderly mother is starting to sink into that dismal dark negative abyss too. So hard to see. So very hard. I think this weeks’ gallery is going to have me in tears all day. xx

    1. Susie says:

      It is tough. I think it also depends on what kind of relationship you have all the years. If it’s always been a bit tough it gets harder. If it was always really loving then it is easier to respond differently because you remember differently.

  4. jfb57 says:

    This is a wonderful post Susie & I can imagine how hard it is for you. You are such a positive person who helps us all to look at the glass half full!

    1. Susie says:

      Thank you Julia. I really do try. Some days I do fail to walk the walk. On days like that I just look backwards and see how far I have come and changed.

  5. The Moiderer says:

    I think it’s good to write this stuff on your blog. Clearly you are trying very hard to find the positive in this which I know is how you are. It must be very exhausting and draining for you

    1. Susie says:

      Thanks. It is draining because there have been no recent visits that weren’t difficult. Some easier than others, but there is generally something.

  6. Debbie says:

    I agree with what everyone else already wrote and just want to add that I think you are one of the strongest people I know and just wish you had others here to help shoulder the burden. Even strong people have their limitations.

    I think it’s great that you are using your writing as a form of release.

    1. Susie says:

      Thanks. means a lot to me. :-)

  7. JulieB says:

    Deeply, deeply sad. Thank you for sharing this – it must have been very hard. I wish I could help you find the answer, but suspect it lies in the love you share with the rest of your family. x

    1. Susie says:

      It is sad. I try to view it as what I am meant to learn about life and myself and the example I send my kids. My husband has really been a godsend and he is usually the one pushing me to invite her more.

  8. It must have been very hard to write this post and it was beautifully written. Well done. I hope that writing it has helped you a little. Very hard sometimes.


    1. Susie says:

      It definitely helps to write. Thanks Maggy.

  9. My Step Gran used to say such harsh and cutting things to my sisters and I, I learned to ignore it just as I learned to fain interest when I had to listen to the same thing over and over with her, my sisters especially one would get very hurt by some of the comments and I spent hours trying to put right what took seconds to administer. She has been gone a long time now. As for advice on how to deal with it, I don’t know. It’s very wearing, especially when you have to watch people you love being hurt yet family ties and love for the person you keep coming back for more.

    Take each day as it comes and try and limit the damage with discussion and explanation I guess, I have never come across anyone as positive as you are, a real trooper! If anyone can do it it is you it’s just a shame that you need too.


    1. Susie says:

      Thanks so much. I wasn’t always this positive, it has been a lot of hard work. And there are still days that are harder than others.

      You are right, it is wearing.

  10. I think your drowning woman/rescuer analogy is very astute. It sounds like you are a true rock and ray of light that does shine through the haze of negativity. Be proud of this but walk away when you need to. You can only do so much but I’m sure that what you do do really does count, and hopefully that provides some solace.

    1. Susie says:

      As I was writing the analogy just came to me and it really feels like it. I feel for her because she is stuck at a place that change is hard for her.

  11. Deer Baby says:

    This must have been very hard to write but it is beautifully expressed. Do you know I am in a very similar position with someone in my life (not mother or grandmother). I saw her at the weekend and every single thing that came out of her mouth was negative. Everything. My son is noticing it now, and it won’t be long before my daughter does and I feel it is a toxic atmosphere. But I really don’t know what to do about it. Can’t just walk away. The paragraph that really spoke to me was ‘You want closeness, but your words and actions….’ that is it for me. Why take it out on an innocent child?

    I can hardly believe it’s the same woman from that photograph in the navy dress – so beautiful and vibrant.

    1. Susie says:

      I loved that picture, and I have another I couldn’t find with her in a fur coat and she could have been a model.

      This is a woman who sewed, crocheted and knitted beautifully intricate things. She had so much talent but has always been a dependent type of person. My grandfather treated her like a queen (out of love).

      She had a hard childhood and grew up in an orphanage from age 10 or so because her father died and her mother couldn’t support her. She was in the holocaust as well.

      So I know she has been through much, but it is sad to see and hard to live with.

      Please email me if you want to “talk” about your situation.

  12. Awww Susie, I don’t have much more to add other than to maybe just accept her for who she is and be grateful that you are the positive, amazing person you are. Hugs. x

    1. Susie says:

      Thanks and I try to.

  13. In my experience there are only two things you can do with negative people.

    First you can cut them out of your life. Which while effective, isn’t possible when it’s family you love.

    The second is very difficult. The Quakers say that ‘There is that of God in everyone’, which to me means that there is always a bit of good in every person you meet. I think the trick is to find that good, grab it tight and never let it go. When that negative person starts to pull you down, cling to this bit of good and hope that it tempers their words.

    Then as my mother used to say you ‘kill them with kindness’. After a while I began to take great pleasure in being polite and kind at people. It often sticks in their throat, and throws angry people off their stride. It may count as passive aggressive, but it balances out your need to retaliate with the need to be cordial.

    Unfortunately, I don’t think these tactics work for children and I’ve no suggestions on how to protect them. I hope you can find a positive solution to help everyone.

    1. Susie says:

      I see the moments and like I commented above, I know the tough life she had so I understand. That doesn’t always help reality.

      I also am not sure if the killing with kindness thing works on really depressed people.

      Thanks for stopping by.

      1. Sorry, I didn’t mean to imply that aggressive kindness would help her, only that it might help you. Depression is a horrible debilitating disorder, it’s so very sad to see it torment a woman that survived so much.

        You obviously have great strength to persevere with hope and cheerfulness.

        1. Susie says:

          I hope you don’t think I was upset at your response. It was kind of a follow up musing to your comment on how you don’t think it works on kids. I do try to behave in a positive
          way and be nice, but crying and negative responses just have a way of bringing
          you down, especially when you realize how sad and tortured she is and even if I am nicer than anything in the world, it won’t make very much of a difference. (or at least it hasn’t in the past.) Thanks for taking time to respons again.

  14. Billy Coffey says:

    That’s such a tough situation, and one that I’ve been through myself. There aren’t any easy answers. I think in the end everything comes down to choices. We either choose to see life as a blessing or a curse. She’s free to make her own choice, and you’re free to make yours. I will say, though, that sometimes selfishness is a good thing. You have to look out for yourself first.

    Loved the honesty in your words.

    1. Susie says:

      Thanks Billy.

      I agree with what you wrote and the looking out for myself is something I have done because I have to in order to stay sane and not drown.

  15. MrsLJHall says:

    Despite how it seems, you and your little one are probably a ray of sunshine in her life and I am sure that she appreciates you even if she can’t express it. You lovely lady x

    1. Susie says:

      There is some stability to it, but as time goes on I see it providing her less and less joy and that is saddening.

  16. I had an on and off relationship with my dad. I went to therapy in my 30’s and learned he couldn’t wouldn’t ever love me. I forgave him. As he aged I allowed him back into my life. If he became unbearable when I visited I would ask him to stop or I would have to go. Sometimes I left 10 minutes after I arrived. Most of the time I was tolerable. My suggestion: Ask for guidance. Listen and then take the action needed.

    1. Susie says:

      I just feel bad for her. My dad is an only child and he lives overseas.

  17. That is very sad. I don’t think you have failed her, I think you have tried very hard, desperately so. That is all you can do. x

    1. Susie says:

      I think if I would have learned the lesson i am meant to learn, i would be more at peace than I am now. Thanks.

  18. That made me cry. You know what I’m going to say, I suspect. Your lesson is to learn to accept that you can’t help other people to learn their lessons. It’s unbearably hard, I know. Believe me, I know. Sigh. But I am sending you love, and strength. xxx

    1. Susie says:

      I think a lot of the posts today have made people cry. I know that everyone needs to learn their own lesson, but am not feeling at peace enough to say i have learned mine. Thanks for the wishes. Really appreciated.

      1. We’re all still learning. But we’re on the way, which has to be a good start. There are things (lots and lots of things) in my life which I’m still struggling with. But I’m trying, and I think we get lots of points for trying. Much love. xx

        1. Susie says:

          One thing that I do a lot in general when I am feeling upset about something is I look at how I do that thing differently and better than I used to.

  19. Vonnie says:

    You know, I could have written this about my Nana. When I told her that I was pregnant her response was, “Oh. Another little bastard for the world to support.” and my sister had an equally negative reaction. Over the years we have taken it in turns to do everything for her after her confidence was knocked by a succession of strokes but when my Grampa died it got even worse as we realised how much he’d been doing for her. She now refuses to leave the living room, has a blanket on her sofa to sleep on and has a commode next to her sofa where she “lives” and chainsmokes. My pregnant sister does all of her personal care with no gratitude whatsoever. It’s very hard to remember that she used to be so upbeat, happy and positive.

    1. Susie says:

      As people age they do lose their ability to filter things which is why this is all so hard.

  20. When my grandmother was dying of cancer she pushed us all away and in particular my mother. It hurt her so badly. When she died there was so much that had been unsettled it made it worse for those who loved here. It was during her illness that I got engaged to be married and when I told she just stared at me and didn’t respond. It was horrible. She knew she wouldn’t be alive for the wedding but still she could have expressed some happiness for me. I guess it’s self pity. I don’t know. There is only so much you can do. Don’t let her negatively get you down. It’s not fair that you have that inflicted on you. I wish you the best. And keep smiling it might be reaching her although she isn’t showing it.

    1. Susie says:

      Thanks so much. It is self pity and fear I think.

  21. Nova says:

    What thought provoking words….when I have been in that situation, and I couldn’t understand it or be sympathetic at the time I had to ignore and let the words just go over me. Believe it or even though I posted what I did today I always try to see the best in situations and it is very draining when people don’t ….or they use other people’s problems as an excuse for them to wallow themselves. The thing is if someone is truly depressed how can you get them out of that hole?
    I hope you manage to find your answers…thanks for sharing.

    1. Susie says:

      Thanks. What would have helped you?

  22. Careyannie says:

    Its a tough situation that you have there and I have no suggestions as to what to do. I only know that fear of the unknown either brings out the best or worst in anyones behaviour. My own Mumma passed away 4 weeks after my twin daughters where born. I did not have the chance to say good bye and she did not get to meet my lovely girls. It is and will always be the biggest regret of my life and it will always hurt. Perhaps writing this post might be enough to start the healing for you both. I do hope you find your way. X

  23. I remember asking my Mum why all the stories of me as a kid were negative. I was naughty, defiant etc. I asked her if I ever did anything right and I said it in a non-confrontational friendly manner- she looked at me in absolute horror and didn’t reply. That was a few years ago and I have never, and I mean never heard a negative story about my childhood since. She simply hadn’t realised what she was doing. I think my Mum is a similar age to your grandmother…