My 20-year-old brother has some bahavioral problems which cause significant stress to me and my parents. He is short tempered and can not take suggestions even when politely expressed. He turns aggressive and resorts to blaming. For example, the other day he showed some pictures he took and I just mentioned that one of the pictures was a bit underexposed (dark) he was visibly upset. In fact, I can not even say some words of praise for any relative or friends (his or mine). He tends to get hostile as he interprets this as his own insufficiency.
Because of this and his controlling nature, he has difficulty making friends. He had a friend, but there were problems between them as he asked the friend to not be friends with some other people whom he does not like. He does not have any friends now.
He does not have clear understanding of boundaries, and tends to control other people. His world view seems to be revolving around himself. At times he is a caring brother, but at other times he has a profound lack of respect for others' feelings.
I think that there are some aspects of parenting that may have lead to these issues. My mother is an overcaring parent. She is always available to him and helps him with trivial-est of all decisions. They talk to each other ~3 times in a day on phone (he goes to college in a different city). She wakes him up in the morning so that he can go to college in time, asks in the evening about the day, whether he has had food or not, etc. Further she does not set any boundaries with him, often he has unreasonable expectations from my mother and she gives in to his expectations. She goes at great lengths to save him any small difficulties. In short, she treats him like an infant or kid rather than an adult. I think this has resulted in him
- having a high sense of entitlement,
- having a poor understanding of boundaries, and
- not being able to take any suggestions/constructive polite criticism.
I have discussed with my mother several times that her over-protective parenting is seriously impeding his personality growth as an adult and causing these problems. She agrees with my point of view, but seems to be unable to look at her own behavior in an emotionally detached way in practice. Thus she is unable to amend it. She still continues to think of him as a child rather than a grown up man.
How can I help my mother see that her overcaring and overprotective behavior - however well intended and arising out of motherly affection - is highly damaging?