I have the same problem with my mother. I feel like a puppy who doesn't know if its going to get petted or kicked when I'm around her.I do know her own upbringing has a lot to do with it. She has this fantasy that she is going to live with all of her children in a big old house, and that we are going to take care of her. Well, only problem with that, is her fantasy doesn't happen to include our significant others, and when she lives with any of us, she targets the significant other in an attempt to drive them away. She has a bachelor's degree, and her credits are from several well known universities (a fact she likes to remind us of often), yet she won't work (she lists off a plethora of ailments/diseases she has/might have). She belittles our little community college degrees and factory jobs, but expects us and our S/Os to support her with them. Worse than that, her degree is in psychology, and she is constantly trying to analyze us and use reverse psychology and behavior modification techniques on us (I started reading her psychology textbooks when I was ten, so it doesn't tend to work on me, lol). If we object to something she says or does, she says "I"M the one with the degree in psychology." My response to her the last time she said that was "Okay, well then why don't you go to work and actually use your knowledge somewhere." But then she just did an about face and started the symptom list again to reason why she can't work-sigh
She just sent me a guilt email this week about a poor ailing grandma who no one loves or takes care of anymore. The woman is only 17 years older than me, for goodness sakes, and she acts as if she's 90! I was going to email her back and ask her if she'd become the stereotypical Jewish mother, but I just hit the delete button instead.
Something that's helped me is to limit my communication with her to when I am feeling stronger. If there are difficult family issues I have to deal with, I just don't maintain any contact with her at that time.I don't share intimate details of my life with her, because she collects it and uses it as ammo.I've gotten the same type of rejection regarding visits as you have,so I only plan to visit her when I'm going to be up in her area visiting others or camping. That way, if she calls it off, it's not a wasted trip. I no longer ask her to attend any of my family's important events. She just says no, anyway, then makes sure my children know she's attended their cousins' events.I used to still invite her to my events, but then she decided she wasn't coming to my graduation from nursing school, after diagnosing my "lack of nursing assessment skills" over the phone (because I wouldn't give her symptom list a medical diagnosis-something nurses ABSOLUTELY DO NOT DO).Now I won't invite her to my events, either. I am just tired of rejection! It's time for me to get on with my life instead of beating my head against a brick wall.
LOL! Here-replace your mom's song with this rhyme:
There was a little girl who had a little curl
Right in the middle of her forhead
When she was good, she was very very good
But when she was bad, she was horrid