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Help me understand this, please

JRI's picture

My SGD, "M", SD61's daughter, texted me yesterday asking if everything was ok with Grandpa, DH85.  I said, yes, he's still his crazy self, lol.  She said her mom, SD61, had told her DH85 only had six months to live.  I told her that was news to me since his oncologist says he will live to 100 and die of something other than prostate cancer.

It reminded me of the incident 2 years ago when SD61 told us M had terminal cancer.  Long sobbing story of how she can't sleep, how she's planning to clean M's house, making arrangements to have food delivered, planning to babysit.  Grief about how M's husband will react.  Story about a family member RN who had a long serious talk with M about the gravity.  Etc etc.  Turns out M had gone to the ER for a digestive prob which was treated with medicine.

I just cannot understand why people do this.  Her need for drama must be overwhelming.  I know she's already anticipating DH's funeral when she can go full bore bat crazy.  Does anyone understand why?


caninelover's picture

She wants people to feel sorry for her and see her as grief stricken.  That would be my only guess but it is bizarre and difficult to comprehend.

Would SGD go back to SD and tell her she discovered her story was a lie?

JRI's picture

I can see SGD bringing it up because she confronts SD about her misdeeds which is why their relationship is testy.  SD pines for a cloiser relationship but SGD wisely holds her at arms length.

SGD and I have an agreement.  When either of us hears alarming news about the other from SD61, we check with each other first.  That's what she was doing when she texted.

I make it a point not to run SD61 down to her daughter but we both know what we are dealing with.

caninelover's picture

SD is really such a mess.  SMH.

strugglingSM's picture

I assume they do this for attention. BM has had several relatives who had "months to live" and now appear to be perfectly fine. BM also had a protracted "cancer scare" that she desperately tried to get DH to acknowledge multiple times...most recently telling him how "hard" it was on her to think she might have cancer (which she doesn't have). 

CLove's picture

Seems to be like food and water to these people.

hereiam's picture

Mental illness and attention. It's a form of Munchausen by Proxy, with the exception that she's not doing something to actually make them sick. 

JRI's picture

She may not be doing anything to harm them but she's making SGD and me sick.  Lol.

I think it's a combination of desiring drama to cure boredom, a wish for attention and pity and an excuse to express emotion.  She is bummed out because her ex-MIL recently died, donated her body and a memorial hasn't been held yet.  Funerals are the perfect opportunity.

Exjuliemccoy's picture

Of all the skid nonsense, it's the lying that bothers me most. Grandiose, ridiculous, unnecessary falsehoods caused so much ICK with YSD, and I avoid such people now because of it.

What if you called your SD and just asked her why she said that? What do you think would happen? 

JRI's picture

I've made it a policy to give her as little attention as possible.  If I mentioned it, I'd hear, "Who told you that?"  "What did she say?"  "When did she say that?"  "What else did she say?"  "Was she mad?"  Then there would be a long story about how she always did so much for SGD and how unappreciative SGD is and how it hurts SD and why can't she see SGD more and how SGD's inlaws go overboard  on and on and on.  The morale of her story would end up being the same: she's a poor helpless victim.

And she wonders why SGD keeps her at arms length.

SeeYouNever's picture

Wow someone actually studied these people!

I think they should also study how it correlates with lifespan lol.

JRI's picture

Sounds just like her.  Thanks.

lieutenant_dad's picture

$5 says if you confronted SD about it, she'd tell you that's not exactly what she said and M must have misheard her. Or she'll throw the blame back on you or DH saying "but that's what was told!"

Why she does it could be for sympathy, the drama, gifts, etc. There is some reward in it for her. Best you can do is tell M that if she has questions about your DH's health in the future to just ask you.

JRI's picture

SGD and I check with each other when we hear dire "new" from SD.

ESMOD's picture

My YSD calls us one night.. her sister got some medical test results and her bun/creatine ration were a little elevated.. EVERY other test result was in totally normal range.

Of course.. the words she is using from her sister.. possible leukemia.. and other horrible potential outcomes.

This was not coming from any medical professional.. it was what they googled.  

Of course.. their quasi hypochondria (inheritted from their mama).. has them immediately looking to the worst case scenario.

DR calls back and tells her that he has zero concern.. all of her other results are firmly normal.. that the ratio can be thrown off by something as simple as dehydration.. nothing  to be concerned about.


My dad also has a caregiver who is the daughter of long time friends.. she IS a diagnosis seeker.. she is on something like 14 psychotropic meds daily.. each visit to the dr will result in a new diagnosis.. and usually meds.  She went to a new gyno.. and per my dad.. she was "wholly dissappointed that she didn't get a script.. " she thought she needed hormone therapy.

Well.. apparently on one of her trips to the ER.. a doctor told her she may have migraines.. since she had a headache.. wel.. off she ran with THAT diagnosis.. taking prescription meds.. and well OVER taking OTC "excedrine Migraine".. which actually resulted in more headaches.. like rebound headaches from the pain meds...

She is now in the hospital.. acute kidney damage.. caused by.. yep.. her overuse of medications.. for conditions she likely didn't really have to begin with.

be careful what you ask for.


Ispofacto's picture

GBM died of acute kidney damage.  Satan appears to be headed in the same direction.  Society will be a better place.


DPW's picture

Why? Because she has been allowed to for over 60+ years to behave this way, handled by kid gloves, never consistently called out for her b.s., etc... She has been able to do whatever she wants her whole life, and continues to be extensively enabled by DH, and we expect more from her? Her need for drama continues because it gets fed everytime by those around her. Difficult to change this many years of behaviour without supports and when on drugs at this age, let's be honest. 

JRI's picture

You're right, sigh....

DPW's picture

Sorry. Didn't mean to defate. 

Doesn't mean you can't mitigate exposure, I just do not think your DH could handle it without something major happening. 

AgedOut's picture

some people love to sop up attention, even when it's not really for them, like crackers in soup. I think your system of double checking what she says is brilliant!

JRI's picture

Since I've been grayrocking her, ie, less attention, I'm hearing the drama less.  DH has even been doing it in his way.  I overhear them on the phone and when she veers off her topic, usually a $ request, and starts in on family drama, I hear him say, " OK, that's enough" and "I don't want to hear about that".

It also helps that I don't bring her up in convos with him.  When I did that, it led him to ask her questions about her health, her daughter's ongoing issues or whatever the current topic is, and she seemed to realize what issue could get our attention and run with it.  Its very tiring having her in the family.