Growing up the only girl with two brothers, I was daddy's little girl. I was also the only fair-skinned child - my mother is very dark-skinned. As a child I was physically and mentally abused by my mother and sexually abused by my uncle. I had a child out of wedlock at 17, and my parents divorced in the same year as well.
I have had treatment for 30 years off and on. It has been recommended to me in the past to sever my ties to my mother. I have deep rooted depression and suicidal tendencies.
In spite of my past however, I have been able to obtain a B.S. degree.
My daughter has an MBA; my oldest child went to college, but did not graduate. She has 3 children and no marriage.
One of my brothers died due to a drug overdose, the other is in a mental hospital. He has been treated for over 20 years with psychotic dementia.
I need some help trying to understand how my mother came to view me as her adversary. She says she loves me and has forgiven me for taking her husband, my father, from her. As a child I would not let her sit in his lap or allow him to be affectionate towards her. She also said that it was my pregnancy that shamed him into leaving the family. I cannot remember my mother ever hugging or kissing me as a child. She does not even have a baby picture of me and her together. She says it's because I would cry when she tried to pick me up as a baby. People often questioned her about my skin color, and wondered whether I was in fact my father's child.
I am questioning whether we can ever have an affectionate mother/daughter relationship. Are the wounds too deep for both of us? My mother tells me whatever she did to us was what my father wanted done. She accepts no responsibility nor offers any apologies for the pain she inflicted on her children. She did it all for his love...which I caused her to lose by getting pregnant. My dad has since passed away.
I feel unlovable. How can anyone really love me when my own mother refuses to love or show compassion for me? This situation has affected my ability to love/trust others except for my kids. Please give me some direction or course of action to follow. Thanks.
You have done an amazing job with your life especially given the amount of abuse you have suffered. It always surprises me how resilient we humans really are. By all accounts, with the amount of dysfunction in the family you should be a confirmed abuser yourself and shouldn't have accomplished a quarter of what you have.
It is also standard for people who are involved in the situation to have the answer to their questions blatantly before them and not be able to see it. We all have blind spots that we would see in other people but are unable to perceive in our own lives. It happens with everyone and has absolutely nothing to do with intelligence. I am sure if you read your email you would also see it in a heartbeat.
You said your mother blamed you for getting pregnant and then stealing her husband's love away from her. That is why she is so angry, and for her to be angry can only mean one thing. To think this way she must be very immature and have no real clear idea of boundaries and responsibility.
You were a child and your parents were supposed to be adults. Kids do not make adults do anything and no one can really be controlled by someone unless they are willing to be controlled. Your father did what he wanted to do and so did your mother, but your mother found it more convenient to blame you than resolve the issue with your father.
The sad thing is that children believe everything that a parent says to them no matter how bizarre and unhealthy. Once a child believes what has been told to them they tend to hold onto that belief without really questioning it for a lifetime. The information also becomes enshrined within the family as a family myth. Take back your life and realize that your mother blamed you for your parents' poor marriage and not for anything you did or did not do.
I wish you all the best, as what you have done is remarkable.
Jef Gazley, M.S., LMFT
This question was answered by Jef Gazley M.S. Jef has practiced psychotherapy for twenty-five years, specializing in Love Addiction, Hypnotherapy, Relationship Management, Dysfunctional Families, Co-Dependency, Professional Coaching, and Trauma Issues. He is a trained counselor in EMDR, NET, TFT, and Applied Kinesiology. He is dedicated to guiding individuals to achieving a life long commitment to mental health and relationship mastery. His private practice locations are Scottsdale and Tempe, Arizona. You can also visit Jef at the internettherapist, the first audiovisual mental health online counseling center on the net.
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