Mothers’ Day Delayed Triggers

It seems like when one of those trigger days comes up, other stressful shit snowballs and everything feels hopeless.

Of course I’m talking about mothers’ day as the trigger day. And even though I felt like I sailed through it all right on the actual day, it’s apparently caught up to me.

Last night I ran some errands. When I was sitting in my car in the Trader Joe’s parking lot I saw a guy walking between cars in the lot and he glanced at me. No doubt it was because I had just started my car, he needed to walk behind my car to get to his and he wanted to make sure I saw him too so I wouldn’t rear end him.

Completely understandable. He was watching out for himself.

But my mind goes to my mother and either a memory of something I’ve done before or something I can imagine me having done when I was just a little younger, likely after divorcing my father. If I’d have caught an age appropriate man glancing at my mother in the same way, it would not be above me to say, “There ya go mom, he’s checkin’ ya out.”  It would’ve been mostly a joke since once divorced, she had no interest in dating AT ALL.

Then I switched roles (in my mind) but in my case, my daughter was imaginary because I don’t have one. I pictured me in my mother’s role and a teen daughter saying that to me while we sat in the car together getting ready to pull out of our spot and go home with our groceries.  I even pictured what that might feel like to have such a presence in the car with me.

I started thinking about how I knew by the age of 13 that I didn’t want kids. Then I thought about how I’d felt slight regret in the past and thought how it might be nice to be THAT house where my teen kids friends all came to hang out.

Last night as I thought about it though, felt lonelier. I felt even more regret. I don’t regret not having children in the state I was in at the age I would’ve been having kids.  But I regret not ever feeling like I could be a capable parent.  I never felt grown up enough. I still don’t.

The thought of the type of man I would want to help me with the most difficult job in the world crossed my mind. I started to picture the kind of man it would take to help me raise one or two children. I’ve never been with such a man.

At that point, I realized that ever since the break up of a tumultuous, emotional roller coaster of a relationship in 2011/2012, I never stopped to think about what sort of man I would like to have in my life.

I’m not sure I ever really did. The men who I felt capable of raising children were not for me…not in my mind. They were too good for me. And I settled for men who, some good looking, but all of them were emotionally unavailable in some way as well as emotionally immature. At least I had the instinct to know better than to have kids with them.

But then it didn’t really have a whole lot to do with them. I was afraid to be pregnant and then I was afraid of how would the child be financially cared for. But most of all, I did think about how I would treat any child of mine. I had bad examples and somehow I knew that having kids was a bad idea for me. At the time I made the decision at 13, I just thought it was purely selfish. I thought I just didn’t want the burden and responsibility so that I could be free. But the truth is I didn’t want the responsibility because I didn’t think I could handle it and didn’t believe that I’d ever find a man would could either.

My thoughts then lingered to B as I drove to the next stop to drop some stuff off at Goodwill. At a stop light, I glanced over at a car sitting next to me. Inside I saw two people and felt sad. I wondered what their life is like. If they get along. If they have family. If they have support in their lives from both family and friends. If they were happy to be in the car together.

Because at that point, I was longing for company. But not just any company. I wanted someone I felt close to. Someone I felt safe with. Someone that I felt had my back and enjoyed being with. It was a more relaxed feeling to not have B with me. I can’t stand being with him in a vehicle. He doesn’t talk, and when I talk he doesn’t acknowledge most of what I say. He doesn’t see the same things I do and so there is this big ass gaping ravine between the two of us even when we are sitting next to each other.

So that led to frustration, sadness and more loneliness.

And this morning I realized that the AC wasn’t really working. Which means that in order to get attention to that, I need to call or text the wicked bitch of southeastern PA.  She’s got a history of invalidating complaints, blaming us and putting the onus on us to take care of certain things. Not big things like this. But that she’s done that at all, just added to the depression that already set in.

It’s bad enough to have the AC go ka-fucking-put on the first day it’s been hot in 2 weeks but quite another to know you have to deal with a difficult person (probably a narcissist) to deal with it.

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Mother’s Day

This is a lonely day for me. I’m not a mother but biologically, like everyone, I have a mother. She is still alive and I miss her sometimes. Today, being the day specifically dedicated to mothers, I am thinking about her a lot. But I’m feeling kind of numb about the whole thing.

I think I’ve begun to put up a wall that blocks any difficult emotion, especially on days that are family oriented in any way.

And that’s because I feel the need to protect myself. I am my own mother, father and sibling now. I cannot depend on any of my family members for any kind of support anymore. And even though I know that cognitively, I know that I have not accepted it emotionally.

Hence the wall…to protect myself. To protect the child within who was not protected as was the case of the adult me too, who was pummeled with guilt, shame, abuse and bullying via family. The proverbial family scapegoat, trash bin and door mat.

But I will say here, although my mother will not see or read it, “Happy Mother’s Day, mom.” I miss you sometimes. And have thought about calling or writing you. But then I remember why I don’t stay in contact.

Despite how hurt I am by your actions and treatment of me, especially while my father was dying, let alone your emotional neglect and enabling of the abuse when I was a child, I wish you well and hope that you are having a nice day and that you hear from your other kids.

I don’t know at this point if we will ever talk again or if I will see you. I want to believe it’s possible. But realistically speaking I don’t think that it will happen that you will ever understand why I stay away. It is beyond disappointing to me that your actions indicate that I am and may have always been expendable to you and certainly not all that important.”

It is sad and shocking to be woken up by abuse only to really see so much more that was abuse all along after being led to falsely believe it was all and only me. How can a mother betray her own child in such a cruel way.

But I can say that since this is the truth I am grateful to have woken up and grateful to those who helped me see what had been going on.”

It’s That Time of Year Once Again

Triangulation+-+Narcissistic+MotherMother’s day is soon upon us and I’m feeling a bit anxious about it. I admit I feel kinda glad I have no obligation to anyone and that I don’t have to make Hallmark a couple dollars richer but still. Mother’s day is a weird day as is the anticipation of it through the week leading up to it. It’s been like this the last few years.

I just went to look through some emails my mom and I exchanged and realized that this is the third mother’s day since I decided on severing ties with my family.

Thing is ties have not actually been severed that long because I just discovered (because my memory craps out on me when I’m stressed out) that my mom and I were still communicating a little through email throughout 2014.

The last email I received and then ignored was sent from her in December of 2014. She wanted to see me while she was in town and by that time, I didn’t want to communicate at all anymore.

The communications between the two of us were civil enough, she’s not a narcissist. She was more like a flying monkey for my sister. And I’m still not comfortable with using that term in reference to my mother.

Edit: Thursday 9/14/17: I’m much more comfortable in using “flying monkey” as a term for my mother as well as other words that are known to offend some people whatever context they are used in. At the same time, I am also more inclined now to tell you that she is indeed narcissistic herself. In the almost three years since I’ve written this, I have woken up even more, learned even more and understand even more about the behavior of my family members and that includes my not so lovely mother.

Not having her in my life hurts the most and I miss her. I knew those emails were going to trigger this emotion but I really wanted to see when the last time was I actually responded to her.

Edit 9/14/17: When I say hurts the most, I’m saying in comparison to how it feels to not be in contact with her and my siblings. But when I think about my brother at times, that can also bring about a feeling of “missing him the most” too. I get sad about my sister, but I don’t ever feel the temptation to contact her that I feel at certain times when I think about my mother or even my brother.

She has sent birthday and Christmas cards since, but no emails and no phone calls.

I feel ashamed though because I wasn’t honest with her when I addressed needing “time away from the family.” I told her I needed to straighten my life out and that my wanting to take time away from the family has nothing to do with grudges or blame and that it was about taking responsibility for my life, that wasn’t the whole of it.  Sure I needed to straighten myself out. I’m still a mess. But I was angry at her and my siblings. I needed to go no contact and I was too fucking chicken to tell any of them the whole story.

Edit: 9/14/17: Reading this now, I feel sad for my self just those few years ago. I have no reason to feel guilty. The guilt likely comes from the fact that honesty is a value of mine. But in this case, honesty had already been utilized. Discussions were had, resolution attempted. Any I got nowhere but blamed and scapegoated. It wasn’t like I hadn’t tried. It was a matter of survival. Besides, it was a good way not to completely burn the bridge. But I still think it may have been better not to say anything. No one asked me why, it was info I offered. It wasn’t necessary to give that lie out. Maybe instead of guilt, see it as a life lesson. It’s not like I had experience in cutting ties with toxic family. I’m human, I made a mistake.

I was pissed off, sad and beat into the ground from all the double standards, all the gas lighting and all the bullying by my siblings and then my mother’s part in the triangulation with my sister and her minimization of my brother’s raging at me. She waved that off as “just an emotional reaction.”

But I couldn’t write or tell her any of that. I couldn’t tell them how I really felt because I was too afraid of the tables getting turned. So they have no idea what I’m staying away for, not really.

But you know, if she had some sort of awareness she would know that her behavior was unacceptable, inexcusable and rather appalling for a mother. And she would take action to address it and maybe even fix it.