Question:

I'm trying to follow the whole honor thy mother and father thing. My father is not around and my mom is hard to deal with. She and I argue sometimes, but she is also skitzo and bipolar. She seems like she's a normal person, but she told me I have no idea what she goes through in her mind and behind closed doors. But that's besides my point. I try not to disrespect her, but it's so hard not to talk back to her. I don't know how to to deal with her being the way she is

My brother is 18, and he's autistic. I don't know how to deal with him either. My mom tells me to worry about my own self and stop worrying about them. I don't know how to deal with them with me having no mental conditions whatsoever. It's hard because I feel like I'm in the middle.


Answer:

I suspect the core of the problem is that you want to fix things and they can't be fixed. Such situations are frustrating and painful. So here is the first step: you need to accept that your mother and your brother are both flawed people. They have their good points and their bad points, but they are their own persons. You can encourage them to be better, but you can't make their problems or their bad behaviors go away.

What you can work on is yourself. While you can't change life around you, you don't have to let things impact your attitude. "Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" (Philippians 4:11-13). So be nice to the people in your life because you choose to be nice. They may have a hard time being nice back, but that is their struggle; just know that you made it a bit easier for them because you were nice first.

I don't know all that you go through with your mom, but you can honor her by being polite, listen when she needs someone to talk to, and if what she asks of you isn't something wrong or crazy, then do the best you can. If she says something rude, you can politely say, "That wasn't very kind." If she tries to pick a fight, try to be calm and say, "Let's talk about this later when you're a bit calmer." Just because someone baits you, it does mean you have to bit the hook.

Hello,

I know it's been a while since I have emailed. I just wanted to thank you for taking the time to talk to me and will continue to email soon.

I'm here whenever you need someone to talk to.