Sunday, May 14, 2006

Mother's Day

Okay, I’ll rant a bit here. For those of us who had abusive childhoods, Mother’s Day is likely to be a very difficult time—as is Father’s Day. Either it was our mothers who abused us or who at the least failed to protect us. Maybe they didn’t know or couldn’t protect us, but a part of us carries anger about that for a very long time—even when intellectually we understand.

It gets even more complicated if we are mothers. We worry that we will make horrible mistakes with our children. We second guess everything. We may defer to the other parent believing surely they know better than we do because their childhoods were more “normal.” And if/when we realize they were wrong, we will feel guilt about abdicating the choices to them. And yes, “normal” parents worry about all of these things too but somehow it feels more urgent, more significant, the stakes higher if we were abused as children ourselves.

This is a difficult mother’s day for me. One grown child is off on her own, in another state, and doing well but I miss her. The other is handicapped and when we divorced I believed it would be better for him to stay with his father. I worry that was a mistake. I worry it would be worse to bring him to live with me. I love both of them and wonder what I could or should have done better as a mother.

My own mother is dead. I understand the pain she was in all her life and the level of self-hate she carried inside. I also still remember my anger and hurt that not only didn’t she protect me, she hurt me herself.

So from all of this, as you might guess, Mother’s Day isn’t easy for me.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m glad society honors mothers. Mothers often give up a great deal for their children. Even my mother made sacrifices for us. Some of those sacrifices were huge mistakes but she meant them to help us.

I’m glad society honors mothers. I know some wonderful ones. This year just isn’t an easy one for me.

Sending safe and gentle ((((((hugs)))))) (especially to all the mothers out there...),


1 comment:

Marj aka Thriver said...

Thanks for writing about this and sharing. Any holiday can be triggering, but what you said about Mother's Day is especially true. I stayed quiet about it on my blog, but I'm glad you didn't.