Another face need for my mother is to the consummate volunteer who sacrifices self in service of others. For the most part, this is a quality I am thankful she possesses. However, it causes conflict when I see that she is serving others in lieu of self-care. This is particularly evident in the constant messy and overstuffed state of her home, car, and yard. During my last visit, I grew increasingly frustrated when each morning I had to clear new piles from the breakfast nook to eat. Though she has two separate dining tables, they are both covered with stuff and not used for serving meals. On the third day, I passive-aggressively asked her if it bothered her to move things back and forth all the time. Though this was not the best approach, it did allow a small discussion about her hoarding.
My mom does not see keeping an organized and clutter-free home as more important than serving her community and she is unlikely to change that behavior. However, when I visit I am anxious in her home and feel like I can never fully rest or relax. I do not feel like I can safely share these feelings, but hiding them makes me feel inauthentic. As a result, vis...
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Pearce, W. B. (2004). The coordinated management of meaning (CMM). Retrieved May 16, 2014, from http://www.pearceassociates.com/: http://www.pearceassociates.com/essays/cmm_pearce.pdf
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