Child Abuse Story From Deb
(Laurel, Maryland, USA)
A volcano. That's it. I finally exploded. I'm 41 years old. My Parents divorced when I was 5. My Mom's best friends son (we lived with them through the divorce) died that same year at the age of 4 from leukemia. My Mothers rage was constant.
My father was inappropriate with me and my last therapist said I am an incest survivor emotionally and more than likely physically. Muscle memory began releasing as I trained to be an actor. It was like earthquakes in my body. My mentor would say, "it's just energy let it go". And I thought I had.
I have recovered memories of my Mother chasing me down our narrow hallway. She was four times my size. It was my goal to make it to my room, which was at the end of the hall. If I could get inside and close the door I could put on my headphones and listen to music. This also meant that they would lock me in from the outside. Some of that lock remains in the doorjam today. I tell myself it wasn't really abuse because it wasn't a deadbolt. It was a latch with an eye and eventually I just pulled it out violently by yanking on the door.
For the times I didn't make it to my door, I could try to turn around and make her laugh about something. Shift her mood and turn it into more of a tickling thing. But, most times she grabbed the lower parts of my legs, tackled me to the ground and would either pull my hair, pinch my arms, dig her nails into my skin, or slap my face.
She was my red-faced stampeding drooling monster who could appear in an instant.
She slapped my face quite often. She wore rings on every finger. When I was 16 she tried to get my Stepfather to help her flip me over on her bed so she could "beat my ass". I blacked out. I don't remember what happened except when I realized what was going on I was on top of her pinning her down with her whimpering like a scorned puppy, "get off of me".
She is ALWAYS the victim.
One of the things she used to say was, "this is going to hurt me more than it hurts you". What a lie that is.
The most damage was done with her verbal abuse though. And my Stepfathers. Every night every night every night. I "couldn't do anything right". It always ended with me apologizing. Always. It was always about trying to make them feel like they were "right" and I deserved "punishing".
I have read so many books. Become successful in my own light. But the problem is they are still verbally abusing. When I go to visit, and I am expected to visit EVERY holiday, they will berate my 94 year old StepGrandmother in the same way they used to do me. They will scream at her. She lives three streets away, does their laundry, and cleans their house.
Two weeks ago I went over to help them. We were supposed to meet at 4pm. My sister left at 3:50 and we had to wait until 5pm to do a 10 minute job. I expressed my concern as it is the only day I have off with my Spouse and I was ambushed with accusations that I don't visit enough.
My sister is 29 and still LIVES there and has not built a life for herself and it seems they resent the fact that I have many successes. They ignore them as often as possible.
I confronted my sister (which is a no no because she can be just as stupid as she likes apparently...she was given everything I was not as a child, she's 13 years younger than me). I told her I thought her actions were rude. She said she "doesn't like waiting around for people". I asked her how it was waiting around when we had set a time. She said that she thought I was rude.
Now, instead of playing my role and just grinning and bearing it, something in my spirit snapped. It just shifted right there on the spot. The volcano came to VIVID LIFE! I went out and confronted my Mother about how my sister thought it was rude that I didn't come by more often. Then my Mother proceeded to raise her voice.
She was next to a grill with a huge cooking utensil in her hand and I stepped in to about 1" away from her face screaming, "I can yell louder than you now!". I swear I wanted to hit her the way she used to hit me. And that is not who I am. But it's like this warrior came up in me and wanted blood.
I've written her two letters. The first finally stating what I think was criminal abuse on her part. I also confronted her about her reaction when I told her that my father had molested me. She said, "we tried to warn you about him but you wouldn't listen to anybody". I replied very calmly at the time, "I was the child and you were the adult".
I feel hatred. I mean REAL hatred. A volcanic eruption with lava too hot to touch and a pathway of black ashes. Leveling.
In the second letter I told her that her rage was not my responsibility. That rageaholism is a real disease like alcoholism. Except instead of taking a shot of vodka, she takes a shot of endorphin every time her face turns red. My Monster.
I told her that I love her for getting me to this planet. And I told her that I now have more rage toward her than I could possibly muster up the energy to control. I told her I didn't want to hit or hurt her.
I certainly understand elder abuse now.
The only thing I can do is keep a safe distance. Love them from afar. Visiting that house is like a veteran going back to Nam for all of the pertinent holidays. I've been out of there for 22 years, and I have now promised myself that I NEVER have to go back.
I told her that statistics state she will probably blame me for being hurtful and stick to her co-dependent world. But, it was my hope that she would grow with me and get help.
In all of these years I've always been the one viewed as "needing to talk to someone". I have talked and talked and read and studied and written plays and had one published, and performed and written music and exorcised the demons. She has not done one thing to heal.
I know that I can't heal for her. I can't absorb her pain and until she acknowledges and apologizes I cannot forgive her hostile attacks on me through my entire childhood. Not to mention her passive aggressive diminishments and back-stabbings into my adulthood.
She's my Mother and I hate her. I really hate her. I'm waiting for it to pass. When I feel bad about it I just get depressed and can't get out of bed. When I just let myself hate her it feels better than depression. But, this is never what I wanted for myself.
It's like it was all under control and then the volcano erupted and every action was still there, the pain was still there, bubbling into a frenzy, the only thing new was the release. And I want to keep it productive. I won't allow myself to turn into a violent rageful person. Now that I know she is my main target I feel much more gentle about the rest of my life. I hate to scapegoat, but I don't think I am. I think she caused me GREAT pain. Spiritual violation.
I do believe in process and this is process.
I do know she can't hurt me and yet I am terrified of her and wanting to go on the offensive for survival purposes. I'm witnessing all of this with detachment as much as I can and hoping it will lead me to higher ground.
I want to finally be free without guilt but I know what they are thinking and saying. I know it's stupid and it shouldn't matter. It's just after total abandonment from my Father I was trying to hold onto my Mother. She is violent. She is still violent and my spirit has said, "THAT'S IT!"
I feel off kilter. Like I'm recalibrating true North on my personality compass. It's very disorienting.Note from Darlene: Due to the overwhelming number of story, commentary and query submissions, and the countless hours required to maintain this ever-growing site, I regret that I can no longer offer comments on all submissions. Please don't take my lack of response to your story personally; I mean no disrespect, nor is it intended as an invalidation of what you endured. Indeed, I am honoured that you have chosen to post what has happened to you on my site. I sincerely thank you for your understanding.Email addresses, phone numbers, home addresses AND website/blog URLs in visitor comments are STRICTLY prohibited, and could result in being banned from making further comments on this site.