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Dear Karly, there is no law that says that we must continue to have a relationship with our mothers just because they gave birth to us. If your mother is a negative person who causes you pain, then limit her place in your life as much as possible. Don't torture yourself about how she favors your brother; favor yourself. Obviously, the woman is not going to be helpful. You would not let a total stranger abuse you. Why do you let someone who should love you do it, then?

My mother forgot everything that had passed between us when I became ill and suddenly began telling all the world that I was, and always had been, her favorite daughter. Uh, no. And making a new script doesn't change 45 years of reality. No, I haven't invited her to take part in my life any more than I did before she decided that there might be mileage in having a chronically ill daughter.

Take care of yourself. Be strong and don't let anyone hurt you.

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