Question: Dear Luise. I have two major problem which I can’t seem to overcome: 1) I’ve been experiencing a severe phobia of doing housework, 2) I can’t stand my Mom’s constant nagging and criticisms mostly about my inability to do my housechores. I’m not sure whether my phobia has to do with the fact that family used to have a maid to do all the housechores as I was growing up, so I’m not really good at doing it now that I’m an adult. Now that we no longer have a maid at home and I’m no longer staying with my parents, whenever I visit them, my Mom would constantly nag and criticise about how badly the housechores are done, how I never seem to help out much at home, how lazy and irresponsible I am and how much I am a burden to the family whenever I visit them because of my lack of ability to do a good job at household chores. Her constant nagging and criticisms are driving me crazy so much so that I’ve develop such a phobia of doing any chores other than cooking & sewing. But when I don’t visit or call often, she’d berate me for being such a bad daughter. What should I do? I feel so overwhelmed and depressed whenever I visit them. V.
Answer: Dear V.: I only know of one valid source for treating phobia issues, Ragini Michaels. I have used her myself. Sessions can be done via Skype. You can reach her at: email@example.com
I would like to add that I do not agree with your mother that the value of a woman is necessarily in how good she is at domestic tasks. I have never excelled in that area and for a long time I felt really inferior and judged. The truth is we all have different talents. Mine are not along that line and I really am not interested in that kind of work.
Your visits require tidiness, out of respect for your surroundings and those who are your hosts, (your mother included), but you don’t visit to work there…you are a guest. If that is a concept that your mother is unaware of, I would limit my visits and if she doesn’t respect you, I would also limit my communications. No one has the right to berate you. No one. It is a form of abuse. Blessings, Luise