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    Hi Anita,

    I’m so sad to read that you were exposed. But it’s great you didn’t fall very ill. Are you doing better now? I hope your family is okay too. My friend had contracted COVID last year, and it weakened his breathing and stamina. There are some yogic breathing practices that help strengthen them. You could try those. πŸ™‚

    It must be so nice to have snow where you live. It makes me think of dark chocolate bread houses covered with icing sugar. πŸ˜€ Though that much snow must not be a cake. It must be freezing. I’ve never seen snow. Once, I was on vacation with my family to a hill station that usually receives snowfall. That year it was delayed, and it snowed after we’d left for home. πŸ˜€

    Thank you for all your advice. I’m not sure yet, but I want to start a new thread because then I get the insights of others as well. πŸ™‚

    (1) Resume your self-care practices:Β I am trying, yes. Journaling, meditating, yoga, neutral self-talk, eating my fruits and veggies, green tea and chamomile, everything.

    (2) When you are home, cuddle with Lily, pet her, find comfort in her physical presence, and tell her hello for me!:Β I sure will! This is such simple advice. and so effective. I have 3 cats. πŸ™‚ Lily does not like to be cuddled, but one of the younger ones does. I pick him up all the time, till he practically squirms to get out of my arms.

    (3) It would have helped a whole lot if you didn’t live with your mother, and if you were not otherwise exposed to her, keep that in mind.:Β I have been speaking to my therapist, for help with this whole career shift. She agrees with me. If I am successful in this, touch wood, I will be moving out of my house.

    (4) Stop scolding yourself, and whenever you feel guilty in regard to your mother, tell yourself that you are not guilty!:Β My therapist said the same thing! She literally warned me, saying that I have to let go of the guilt because I am doing nothing wrong. Have done nothing wrong. She said if I do not let go of the guilt, I’m setting myself up for serious depression in the future.

    (5) Communicate well with your boyfriend, make the relationship a win-win relationship and find comfort in it:Β My boyfriend is amazing, and I’m really grateful for him being in my life. Yes, I do need to communicate better. We just had a fight an hour ago πŸ˜€ Tell me, do past relationships have an impact on the current one? I was in a very long relationship before this, and I cant help but be reminded of it when similar things occur in my current one. There are some parts of that relationship I hated, and I vowed I wouldn’t be like that again or would not tolerate it again in a new relationship. I tend to get really closed-up. I guess I am afraid of being vulnerable. This may affect my relationship badly, no matter how understanding my boyfriend is.

    (6) Every morning when you wake up, set the intentΒ to not expect anything, good or bad, from the day; instead, form the desire to find some interest in the day, something (anything) positively interesting to look forward to:Β This is some brilliant advice. I do tend to put a lot of pressure on myself… I also tend to get very overwhelmed, which spikes my anxiety. So I set very small goals for myself each day, instead of looking at the big picture.


    Hope to hear from you soon…





    Hi Anita,

    I am doing okay. How about you?

    How are things pandemic-wise? I hope you are safe and well.

    The number of times I think of just talking here on Tiny Buddha! But the company I work for has started this new thing. They moved my team to a permanent WFH model. They made us install this software that has a time which I’m supposed to turn on once I start work in the morning, and I’m supposed to clock in 8 hours each day, exclusive of any breaks! That is not all. The software takes screenshots of my screen every 3 minutes! So I cannot be doing anything personal without it reaching my boss and management. I find that a preposterous breach of my privacy. By the time I am done for the day, I am so tired that I just shut the laptop. It even keeps a track of which websites I opened, how many times I used my mouse/keyboard, and for how long my laptop was idle!

    I’ve been feeling seriously low on my self-esteem since a little while now, and I’m trying to go back to my previous self-care habits that had been disrupted due to the holidays last month. I guess I’ll start a thread about this when I find the time because I could seriously use some help. I am making some changes regarding my career (wont say what as of now because I’m afraid of the jinx), and I cant afford hitting a low now. My anxiety makes it so difficult for me that it has taken me years to take any steps for my professional growth. I’d love some more insight. So I will start another thread.

    I got together with my ex; we’d broken up in March because I realized I needed to be by myself. But we got in touch again and rekindled it. So far so good.

    I got Lily spayed, and she is fine. πŸ™‚

    Enough about me… How are things with you?





    Hi Anita,

    You were absolutely right about the time and temeprature!!

    Yes, I can think of a lot of lies and manipulations that my mother has subjected me to. Lies about our family, emotional blackmail and manipulations… My therapist had warned me not to let her get involved in my life, especially my personal life, as my mother is so anxious that she is incapable of thinking about anyone but herself, and she may engineer things that may affect my life drastically. So I do just that. Today, she asked me about my plans for marriage, and even though I do like someone, I told her I am not ready for it at the moment. She kept badgering me with the same question even after I answered it, and I lost my cool. I yelled at her, shouting, “NOT NOW! I TOLD YOU!” That was it. She has been crying all day. I apologized. And then she told me she is reliving past trauma. I don’t know what to do with that. There is nothing I can help her with if she won’t open up. I have stopped asking her as well. Then there is the cold treatment: no looking at me, no talking to me, acting like I am not even in the room… ughhh… My anxiety shoots right up when she does this. Knot in my chest and the intrusive thoughts and that demonic voice in my head… I can’t relax… This has been my whole childhood, and I resent her for it. Now, I do not have even basic compassion for her. Even when she cries, I feel no empathy or sympathy. I know it makes me sound like a terrible daughter, but what do I do? I just don’t feel it. I feel really guilty about this lack of compassion too, but I can’t help it.

    My therapist had told me not to take this reliving trauma bit too seriously; it may just be another form of emotional blackmail. I am trying to do that. But it affects me. Seeing her so sad and her coldness towards me. I’ve had such a bad day. I simply dont get why she wont leave me be.

    How is your weekend going?




    Hi Pam,

    I’m so happy you booked an appointment for therapy. Just goes to show how much you care about your daughter and family. I’m so glad you found my insight helpful. I was afraid I’d offend you and hurt your feelings.

    It is wonderful that you have your own hobbies and business. You sound like such a talented person! I’ve always found scrapbooking very cool. I wanna get into it myself…

    It’s good to know you’re a part of your grandkids’ lives… As you should be too…

    Yes, her abruptness may be a way of keeping you at a little distance, though I’m not entirely sure what you mean by abrupt. With my mother, she has invaded my privacy before. So now I keep her at bay. I do not show her any pictures I take in parties or trips. She is blocked from my social media. She is not allowed to touch my bag without my permission. My mother was always disapproving of me and my choices; we are very different people. So I guess I do not involve her in my life because I just want to be me without any objections or trouble from her. Also, it just makes me very uncomfortable to include her in my life. Sometimes I cannot even explain why. Does that sound like your daughter?

    If it does, please do not take it personally. I know it must sting you. But know she is just trying to protect her space. If you show her you respect her and see her as another adult, she may stop this behaviour.

    Also, I just wanna add… It seems to me that you are being harsh with yourself. It is great that you are self-aware and are taking action to better your relationship with your daughter. Bu that can be done with some self-kindness as well.

    I hope this helps…


    Hi Anita,

    So lovely to read from you as well….

    Happy to know you got your thrid booster. I hope your arm feels better. I’m fully vaccinated myself and that sure does feel better. What with Omicron now, I wonder how much longer till this virus is just another one that only makes you sneeze and have soup in bed.

    About my mother, I realize how exhausted I am. Trying to reach her, o explain, to get to know her, to understand her… is tiring. And I hav accepted that we are just not meant to be friends. And that is alright. I told her I will not try to communicate anymore. That I will back off now. I do not talk to her about my personal life; she betrayed me way too much to be involved in it now. I only talk to her about basic stuff. It is scary and I feel alone, but it is peaceful. I am trying to not need her validation anymore. I will try to move out soon too. Let’s see how that goes.

    I am sorry to know you were affected by the floods. I hope you and your family are okay. We had a heatwave when we finally expected the weather to turn cooler. Western India is hot, and we eagerly wait for winter. Just when we thought we finally get to wear our jumpers, the weather turned on us. And then it rains. It’s like the weather can’t make up it’s mind. We keep winter wear, umbrellas and windcheaters, and summer wear all handy. It is funny. You are absolutely right. This is all a consequence of mankind’s carelessness, and I’m afraid it might just be too late to make amends.

    I also wanna tell you… I went for a vacation this week. I’ve always been conscious of my body. But this time, I did not care about my stretch marks or belly rolls or cellulite or scars. I wore a bikini. I have never felt freer. It is a huge step for me….

    Thank for your kind words…. πŸ™‚

    Hope to hear from you soon…









    Also, I would like to add that I admire your self-awareness and think it is great that you are willing to make some changes to your own self for your relationship.



    Hello Pam,

    I am sorry to hear about your cancer. I hope you are now cancer-free and doing much better.

    I am a 27-year-old woman with a difficult relationship with my mother. I am going to present to you some points from a daughter’s point of view.

    My mother too is controlling and emotionally dependent on me.

    I see some similarities between your daughter and me. I do not know if this holds true for your daughter, but when I am facing a difficult time, the first person I run to is my mother. And for the while that I need her, we have a lovely relationship. After I am back on my feet, and need her less, we are back to our bickering. I feel she treats me like a child and tries to help me even though I don’t need her help anymore. This gets suffocating for me. It does not mean that I dont love her; I just need my space because I’m not a little girl anymore. I suggest that if you are viewing her as your little girl, which I know you always will, you control that. I suggest you view her as another adult, complete and independent, her own person, rather than just your daughter. This may help you be friends with her and really improve your relationship.

    Also, my mother barely has any friends. She literally has no life outside of me. She is completely dependent on me for any sort of recreation and fun. This burdens me as I am not always available. I have my own life and friends, and she then feels abandoned when I go with them. If this is the case with you as well, I suggest you make some friends outside of her. Maybe get some hobbies too. Take a vacation on your own. While your daughter is her own person, remember that you are your own person too, and your existence is not limited to the role of a mother.

    What Anita said, regarding your relationship being like a romantic one, that is something I have felt with my mother as well. She would make me feel guilty for not spending time with her. When I did, she sulked because she was bitter. I realized how dependent she was on me for happiness, how she needed me to need her. And one day I thought to myself, “OMG! I am not her husband!” And I second what Anita says. Therapy would help you and your realtionship immensely.

    Hope this helps…




    Hi Peter,

    What a wonderful thing to say! And so true! This is something I experience so often with friends and family, and now my cats. Even if I don’t like them in the moment, it does not mean I don’t love them… And if I don’t like them in the moment, it does not mean I’m a bad person. I am not my thoughts and feelings.




    Hi Anita,

    How are you doing? It has been so long!!

    I apologize for just vanishing… I just had so much on my plate!

    After I posted here, all of my 3 kittens fell severely ill. And one of them did not make it. He passed right in my arms. I felt him stop breathing and then his heart stop beating. I cannot begin to describe the loss and pain I felt. I wouldn’t wish that pain on my worst enemy. I lost a child that day.

    After he passed, my other two were still critically ill and needed the utmost care. By God’s grace, they survived and are perfectly healthy and growing now (touch wood). The mother cat is fine as well. Her behaviour has drastically improved, and I will have her spayed soon. We are one knit family now. I love them more than anything. My mom has also become quite attached to them. Can you believe it?! She helped me with the kittens so much so that I would not have been able to look after them on my own, considering they needed to be kept warm with heatpads and needed their temperature checked every 2 hours. What a horrible time for us… But I’m grateful they’re okay…

    You were right. I was severely sleep deprived and it took a toll on me. It is ridiculous how much self-doubt anxiety can instill in you. As exhausted, scared, and sleep-deprived I was, anyone in my position would have probably cracked. Let alone a person with disordered anxiety. Looking back, I keep patting my back for doing everything I could for my family. I know I did beyond my best. And the next time I face a difficult situation, I’m going to think of this time and remind myself of the courage and care I am capable of.

    I won’t lie, I still sometimes reel thinking of that time; it was traumatic. And I have remind myself that it is over. I pray for my lost kitten and bring my attention back to the present.

    About my mother, yes I still live with her. The week she was ill was difficult for me. Thanks to lack of sleep and the overburden, I was quite snappy. Because she was isloating, I had to serve her everything she needed. She could get really nitpicky, and it pissed me off. I snapped at her all the time and felt horrible about it later. She wasn’t a fan of the cats earlier, so that added to my worries too. Just a week ago, I had a horrible fight with her, where I told her I was done trying with her. That I have tried to reach her in every way I could, and failed. And so I now take a step back. I will no longer try to communicate. I guess that’s best for the both of us.

    Enough about me. How are you doing? How is the pandemic situation where you live?

    Hope to hear from you soon…




    Anita, my cat’s name is Lily.


    Hi Anita,

    I apologise for not replying. I am not getting email notifications. I am doing much better with my IBS. The new doctor’s medications have helped greatly, and I even gained some weight. I have figured what helps me and what doesn’t. So far it’s going okay, even though I do have ups and downs. My anxiety is up and down too, and I do my best to manage.

    I am now fully vaccinated, so that is a major relief. Things in India aren’t as good as we’d like them yet, but they are better than before. What with the Taliban taking over, I still fear for my country. But that is something I try not to dwell on.

    It is so nice to hear from you. Always warms my heart. How are you doing?



    Hi Anita,

    Thank you so much for thinking of me. I’m sorry for the delayed response. I just… couldn’t. My brain fog sometimes gets bad, and I find it difficult to complete my work. And then everything gets delayed.

    I am safe, thank you for asking. Restrictions continue, and we are not allowed except for a a few hours a day, which is when we get our groceries and stuff.

    About my cats, well one of them comes home. Jumps right in through the window whenever she pleases. So she’s kind of mine. So I’m much closer to her physically. She likes being carried some times. And she loves sleeping next to me too. I can’t tell you how attached I’ve become to her. So I’m scared for her and take extra precautions so that I dont get it myself and then pass it to her. There is no evidence so far of cats transmitting the virus to humans. Yet, my mother is scared and doesn’t like it much if I touch the cat. She doesn’t even like it much when the cat comes in. But I don’t really listen much. I told her that while I get her fears, it’s something she needs to handle on her own. Till there is evidence of cat-to-human transmission of course. Till then, the cat is going to be home. πŸ˜€

    Who doesn’t love a naan and curry. Buttered soft and fluffy naan with coriander is the best. Mushroom curry is my favourite. What’s yours?

    Hope you have a good day πŸ™‚


    Hello Teak,

    Apologies for my delayed response. I have just been procrastinating to be honest. I hope you are safe and well, wherever you are.

    I agree with your point that these “conspiracy theory believers” aren’t open to facts and science. I even know that they have limited to no understanding of biology. I feel it is their own fear acting up. This virus has caused havoc and devastation to such an extent that it is difficult to wrap your head around it. It is hard to believe that such a tiny thing, which isn’t even alive without a host, could cause the world to come to a pause. It is easier to wrap your head around these conspiracy theories, and like you said, the Internet provides you with information on whatever you want to believe.

    I’m so sorry to hear about your husband’s lung condition. It must have been so scary for you. Is he vaccinated as well? My country just started vaccination for my age group, but we are facing shortages, so it is difficult to get an appointment, but I am trying.

    Maybe you are right. Maybe it is my own fear of abandonment talking when I argue with these people. I cannot handle uncertainty too well too. But when it comes to these arguments, sometimes I think it is not just my fears talking. It may also be my scientific background. It kind of hits home when people simply refuse to look at and try to understand evidence. It may also be my arrogance, I guess. What do you think?

    No, I haven’t lost any family to COVID (touch wood). But I lost my father when I was a teen, and my immediate family is just me and mom. I have no siblings. I lost all my grandparents after my daddy, and the family has just been getting smaller. So I am just terrified of losing any more family.

    I do hope you are right about me not jinxing anything with prayers. The Help is one my favourite books and movies. Have you read/watched it? One of the main characters, Aibileen Clark, is such a peacefully godly woman, and she writes down her prayers every day. Inspired by her, I used to write mine too. I’ve always found that I communicate better with writing. (And my handwriting is pretty :D) Maybe I should get back to it. Paper could count as wood, right?

    I hope to hear from you.


    Hi Anita,

    It is such a joy to know that you like Indian food! What is your favourite?

    Thank you for such kind words about my homeland. It gave me such a deep feeling of warmth in my chest.

    I do plan to start wearing my bracelet or at least keep it within reach. Touching it does make me feel much calmer and safe. I even have a similar feeling with a cross. I have always carried a rosary on my person, and I wear it many times too. I have several wooden crosses too. I can’t explain why, but I have always felt a sense of safety with a cross. I am not Christian, and I hope I am not offending anyone. My college has a chapel, which I used to visit every Monday and Friday. These prayer times were the most peaceful times of my week.

    Yes, you are right. It is better to concentrate on what I can control.

    Well, I do have to step out once or twice a week for groceries and the such. I do wear 2 masks, yes. And I don’t go into crowded places and keep away if someone is not wearing their mask right. I feed the stray cats in my building every night, so I have to get out every night. But I do it with two masks, and I dont touch anything except the cat food, which is kept in my window. One of my big fears is giving COVID to my cats. I’m rather attached to them.

    Hope you are having a good day…


    Hi TeaK,

    Thank you so much for replying. This is the first time that we are interacting, so hi! πŸ™‚

    Thank you for your prayers. πŸ™‚

    I tried debating with some of my friends too. And would you believe that they said “Oh nothing really happens! It’s all cool.”? I don’t understand how people can say it’s all cool when millions all over the world have literally died. I have had these debates in person and on social media, and I just don’t get how people disregard safety to such an extent. My uncle, who’s a doctor, called this anti-social behaviour, where you just blatantly disregard the health of other people.

    I have had discussions with “conspiracy theorists” online. This one girl kept sending me posts about how this whole pandemic is a hoax, and there’s an agenda behind it, and the RT-PCR test is inaccurate and should not be used. I told her to send me “credible” sources, and not posts from random people and pages. She still kept doing that, and not wanting to get into nonsensical talks with her, I said that none of this has been proven and is all theory. So till there is any strong evidence supporting these theories, she is free to believe what she wants, and I respect her right to her belief, but I am free to believe what I want. Yet, it did not end, and she continued sending those posts to me. I snapped and asked her again for “credible” sources. (I even felt like asking her if she knew the full form of “RT-PCR” and understood how it worked.) If I told her that if she drank pineapple juice on a full-moon night, she’d never get another pimple, would she believe me? People can write whatever they want on the internet, and a lot of it is pure crap. So it would be better if she did actual research. She got really really agitated and called me all sorts of things, calling me blind and telling me I haven’t done any research on this, and I just “act all smart”. That hurt my feelings, I won’t lie, and I just lost all respect for her as a person. I’m a person of science, with an advanced degree in biology. I have 4 years of research under my belt. It’s not much, but it’s more than most people. I know what I am talking about when it comes to science. Yet, I’m the arrogant and the ignorant one. ***sigh***

    I agree with your point of viewing these people in a different light, and I too felt that they react this way because this pandemic is actually too much to comprehend. But it is fear-inducing and really irritating too to be honest when people start spreading misinformation. I had seen this video of a girl telling people to not cover their nose with the mask or “they will feel suffocated because of lack of oxygen”. She was also telling people to go out into the sunlight because the “virus does not survive in the sun” and it’s good to be around nature, despite there being no evidence whatsoever of sunlight killing the virus. I thought, “That’s swell. If you ever need surgery, we’ll have it in a park”. Several people corrected her and asked her to take the video down because it was misinforming people, especially those who were ill-informed. But she didn’t, and again, we were the ignorant ones. Now when it’s so very bad in my country, it annoys me to think of these people. I don’t blame them of course. They’re scared in their own way actually. But it is irritating.

    People in my own building won’t wear a mask, despite there being cases in my building. I take care; wear 2 masks. Sanitize. Have a bath if I have been to the vet or the doctor. Even when I went to restaurants when they were open, I’d put my mask on as soon as I was done eating. I shouldn’t have gone to the restaurant in the first place, but I did maintain all the recommended precautions. But there’s only so much care I can take. What do I do when others won’t take care? It is a scary world. I am not afraid for myself. I am afraid of losing any more family.

    This turned out to be longer than I’d expected…


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