Tag Archives: Dad

My Mother Hates Me … and I’m Okay With It

30 Aug
yelling

Mom yelling (courtesy of DisciplineProject.com)

You may have already read about the first and second time I was raped, and the nightmare that followed. In the past I’ve also mentioned that I was once a victim of emotional and physical abuse. Today I wonder if that set the tone for life as an adult punching bag, especially after I read the news story of a mother who tried to hide rape in her family by taking her pregnant mentally disabled daughter to get an abortion.

My Family

I’ve always felt there was something “not right” about my relationship with my mother. I didn’t think about the relationship I had with my father as much, because … well, there was no relationship. My parents divorced when I was four years old and my brother was two, and since then I can count the number of times I’ve seen him on one hand. I remember enough of him from back then to know that he was physically abusive towards my mother – apart from the stories my mother tells me about him, I recall him driving her out to a bridge one night trying to get her to commit suicide, and perforating one of her eardrums during a row. My mother moved my brother and I away from him, and remarried shortly after when I was about seven. This is where most of my memories start.

I was lucky to have a stepfather that took my brother and I as his own children and loved us accordingly. But there was never anything other than pure hatred from my mother. Growing up she made my brother and I feel as though we were meant to apologize for the biological father that we had by frightening us with stories of what he did to her in graphic detail, whether we wanted to hear them or not (and it was 99.9% of the time, an emphatic not). She insulted and teased us for inheriting most of our father’s physical traits, trying to make us feel ugly and barbaric. When we brought any school grade below an A+ home to show, we were called “stupid”, “retarded” – but I can’t think of any one time when we were rewarded for an achievement.

She finally had two children by my stepfather, and from then on we would hear nonstop about us being the throwaways. Sometimes she would hit us, but it was rare (I think, because it was so terrible and my stepfather wouldn’t stand for it). I’ve been struck with a table lamp. I’ve been told several times that she’d kill me. But what made me fear her the most was her cold, indifferent and hateful stare. I got the stare whenever I cried, whenever I screamed, whenever I was sick, or whenever I looked directly at her. I saw it was the day she kicked me out of her house, less than a week after my stepfather died of terminal cancer 4 years ago.

And I kept going back to her with my tail between my legs, because I didn’t trust myself to be independent – to be anything other than what my mother thought of me.

The lights in my head turned on only after I tried to go home one last time, when I was laughed out of my church community and cast away by the criminal justice system in a city of supposed ‘new beginnings’. I hoped that if I told my family about what had happened to me, my mother would welcome me back with tears in her eyes. Instead she ranted and raved to my siblings about how much of a failure I was, while I sat in her living room crying. I picked up my suitcase and left.

Emotionally Abusive Parents

Eqi.org gives some common characteristics of emotionally abusive parents that help to paint a clearer picture of what such caretakers are like:

Each parent was emotionally abused by their parents. There is a high chance they were also physically abused or physically punished harshly, even if it was called “discipline”

The parents lay guilt trips on their children and teenagers.

The parents make their children and teens feel responsible for the feelings of the parents.

The parents invalidate their children and teens.

The parents are unforgiving.

The parents are judgmental.

The parents frequently disapprove of the child or teen’s actions or feelings.

The parents emotionally abandon and or emotionally neglect their children and teens.

They may also:

– Ridicule the child or teen

– Mock the child or teen

– Humiliate the child or teen

– Ignore the child or teen

– Threaten the child or teen either with punishment, rejection or abandonment

And from Deal.org, I found this definition:

“Emotional abuse is commonly defined as the systematic tearing down of another human being. Like most forms of violence, emotional abuse is based on power and control over another person. It is probably the least understood of abuses, although it is the most prevalent and most destructive. The victim comes to see him or herself as unworthy of love, affection and respect. “

which sounds eerily similar to what rape and sexual abuse do to a person.

Accept That You’re Innocent

Knowing this today helps me to feel a bit better about letting my parents go. Being raped or sexually abused is never the victim’s fault, and neither is being born to parents who are incapable of or simply refuse to love their children appropriately. The blame belongs to the rapist, the molester, and the deadbeat father or mother. Society may try to blame you for being the victim of either situation, by saying you were “fast” or “tempting with that outfit”, or by saying that “no parent hates their child” and you’re “just a brat”. You weren’t any of those things. You were simply targeted.