My Mum and I; The truth behind the lie we show

We took family holidays, she made me chicken soup when I was ill, she threw me a party for most of my birthdays and she always bought me whatever she could afford. There's no doubt that my mum loves and cares for me with all her heart. But there's two sides to my mother, she just chooses to show the world her caring-mother side. 

I'm the kind of person that feels like I have to please everyone. As a teenager I stayed at home, didn't drink, didn't smoke, always told my mum where I was. But I wasn't always like that. I had a rough patch when I was about 5 or 6 years old. It was around the time that my now-stepdad moved into our house. My mum and dad split up before I turned 1 year old. So having a man that wasn't my dad living in the house was a slight adjustment. I started to act up, maybe in the hope that I would drive him away. I transformed from this happy child to a ball of anger. I would throw heeled shoes at my mum, stand at the top of the stairs late at night "MUM STOP HITTING ME PLEASE" whilst she was sitting in the living room. My behavior was disgusting. But my mum handled it perfectly, and eventually we moved past that. 

Through my teenage years my mum and my stepdad started to drink at home of a night. Which alot of people do, its how they unwind after a hard day at work. Except my mum got to the point every night where she would make comments towards me, put me down in every way possible. Of course she wouldn't remember the next day what she had said - I remember every comment ever made. 

It started small - 'my grades were bad' 'I had no future' 'I was stupid to dream'
*I would just like to point out that my grades were actually good. I tried my best in every aspect of my school work*

Then my stepdad and I started to have problems again. I was old enough to have my own opinions and he didn't like that. He always had to be right, only his opinion mattered. When I would disagree with him, even over a political matter, it would suddenly turn into a full blown problem. Which apparently then caused arguments between him and my mum. Of course it was always my fault, as my mum so harshly put across every time. 

This was what my nights consisted of 6 days a week (I sought refuge at my nans every friday) for about 9 years.

You should know that my mum has always been very dramatic, she seeks attention where ever she can, and she has always been slightly paranoid. These three traits play a big part in what happened next.

At 16 years of age, I started to realise that it would be a lot easier for everyone if I hid out in my room past a certain time each night. It helped me avoid a few late night drunken outbursts. One night I could hear them arguing, it sounded worse than usual. But getting involved would only have made it worse. Everything became quiet after a while. And then I got a text from my mum 'Make sure you get the share of the house that you're entitled to. Love you'. I remember thinking 'what is she going on about now'. I just threw my phone back down on the bed. But I couldn't shake the weird feeling I got from that message. So I decided to go downstairs to check on her. My stepdad had fallen asleep on the couch as he usually does. And my mum was in the bathroom. I asked her if she was okay and I got a very teary 'yes' in reply. I suddenly got this sickening feeling that something was wrong, so I tried the door - it was locked. I started shaking my stepdad to wake him up. He started banging on the door, trying to pull the handle. I then started to frantically look around for something thin to try and unlock the door. My stepdad opened the door, and I fell to the ground. Whilst he was untying the belt that my mum had around her neck I was laying on the kitchen floor screaming. I've never witnessed anything so horrific. I can never un-see what I saw that night. 

What kind of mum would leave her daughter and her family because of a pathetic argument, where my stepdad had threatened to leave her in the heat of the moment? And then, to one side, my stepdad told me that there was no way that my mum would have been able to kill herself that way. Her height and weight would have made it impossible and she knew that. So, what kind of mum would fake a suicide attempt for attention? 

For months afterwards I was still having flashbacks of that night. Attention seeking or not, I was terrified that she would try it again. My bedroom was directly on top of the bathroom and kitchen, I could hear every time the bathroom door got opened or closed. For months I would run down stairs everytime I thought someone had been in the bathroom for to long, incase it was my mum trying to do it again. I would stay awake until I knew she was asleep. I didn't think we could ever get past what had happened that night. I always pretended that I was strong, someone had to be. This was the moment when I was forced to grow up way beyond my years. 

Then I turned 18. You'd think it would be easier for me right? Wrong. My mum turned to cheap digs and insults in an attempt to keep me under her control. My mum didn't know about my miscarriage, or that the guy I met after my 19th birthday helped me through the worst months of my life. But I was compelled to tell her about him. I had to considering I was still living under her roof when I used to go and stay at his house. My mums opinion on us is one I will never forget 'you're a little to ugly for him don't you think. He's going to cheat on you'. And that was not in a joking context. Hearing my own mum call me ugly is the worst thing I have ever had said to me. The thing is, is I wasn't even in a relationship with this guy, she just presumed I was. And it deeply angered me that she'd made an assumption about him because he was good looking, when in actual fact he is the most amazing person that I have ever had the pleasure of calling my friend. Not to mention the fact that he would never cheat on anyone. 

Calling me ugly isn't even the end of it. Last year, I'll admit, I was at my local pub quite alot. I wasn't getting off my face or anything, I just liked the escape and the company. But to my mum and stepdad that translated into something entirely different. I had become a 'slag' in their eyes. Seriously! They were under some insane impression that I was jumping into bed with every man in the pub. Considering they're all 40+ years of age and have known me since I was a baby, I thought the accusation was a bit far fetched. The fact that my mum could think that about me was the last straw. That was when I moved into my dads.

I would just like to finish this post by saying that my mum and I are building our relationship again. Which is slowly but surely becoming something incredible. Moving out of that house was the best decision I ever could have made for myself. And I would like to clarify that I still love my mum with all my heart, just as she loves me. I just wish that we wouldn't have had such an awful 20 years.

xx

If you have any questions regarding this post, require advice or just simply want someone to talk to, please don't hesitate to email me at - safehavenanonymousletters@gmail.com - with the subject 'Parent relationships'.

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