Maybe I’m a bit of a killjoy, but whenever I see one of those sappy posts on Facebook about how fantastic all mothers are, I chime in and point out they aren’t. Why? To validate the millions of us who had genuinely horrible mothers! There is this myth that ALL mothers are angelic and want the best for their children, but it is nothing more than a myth. Hardly any mothers are angelic because no one is that great, but there are also mothers who do not want the best for their children. There are mothers who specifically want to harm their children. There are negligent parents who simply don’t know how or care to take care of their children, but there are also malicious mothers who take joy in hurting their children.
That idea is often foreign to people who grew up in loving homes. It is horrifying to those of us who didn’t grow up with loving mothers but do love our own children. So I chip in to remind the children of abusers that they aren’t alone, but also to educate the rest of the world that sociopathic and sick mothers most definitely DO exist. In fact, they aren’t all that rare. One of the reasons abused children can’t get help is that people naively and foolishly believe that mothers want the best for their children. If we can get just a few people to understand that this isn’t true, maybe more kids and adult children will get the help they need!
The other day, I saw one of those posts about how talking to one’s mother is the highlight of the day and relieves stress. Yeah right! If my mother called me now, I’d be shaking with fear and anger that she found me and violated my privacy. I’d feel unsafe because it would mean she knew how to call me against my wishes. That is the exact opposite of stress relief!
Oddly, a bunch of other women were chiming in with similar thoughts. They were women who knew darn well that not all mothers can love or want to love their children. I was glad to see that so many of us were brave enough to tell our truths. But of course, there are always people who want to ignore reality.
One woman stated that those of us who avoid our mothers for “not being perfect” better learn to be perfect or our own kids will cut us off too.
Wrong. Wrong. WRONG.
None of us cut contact because our mothers aren’t perfect. It is natural for a child or an adult to WANT a loving mother. Even children who are horribly abused smile and play and long for their mothers’ attention. Quite often after a child is killed by abuse and the mother is in the news, the media publishes a smiling, happy picture of the child. These kids are abused, but their biology tells them that their mother is their safe place and way to survive. It’s the only life they know, and a child cannot walk away from his or her guardian. But, even when we are adults and we realize our mothers are screwed up, we still keep trying. Humans are made to need humans. We are made to want families. Abusive mothers get a LOT of chances. Some adults let their parents bully them for life. But some of us say “no more” and escape. This is never done on a whim. It is never done over something small or silly. It is a huge decision made after years of being emotionally or physically battered by the person who was supposed to be our number one protector.
We do not cut contact because our mothers aren’t perfect.
I didn’t end my relationship with my mother because her hair was out of place. It wasn’t because I didn’t get an expensive Christmas gift. It wasn’t because she didn’t give me everything I wanted. It wasn’t because she was unfashionable. It wasn’t because she used poor grammar.
It was because I had endured years of bullying. She repeatedly threatened to kill me. She whipped me until I had welts all over my body. She sold my bed to go gambling. She came into my home without permission and painted my hard wood floors. She dragged bags of rotted garbage into my living room and smirked. She told me obscene stories about my dad to make me hate him. She turned around and called him with horrible lies about me to make him hate me. She stole my credit card. She emptied my little childhood savings account so she could gamble. She left me with a convicted child pornographer just months after he was out of prison. Even years after I cut her off, she committed fraud and tried to drag me into it. I told her attorney I had absolutely nothing to do with her or her cons, and that she was on her own. The list goes on.
She definitely wasn’t perfect because no one is, but that wasn’t why I had to stop talking to her. I had to cut contact because she was mentally disturbed, malicious, cruel and sick. She was going to continue dragging me into her emotional terrorism, drama, and outright crimes.
Children in a healthy home are not going to cut contact with us because we cut contact with our parents. We had good reasons to finally give up on having a healthy mother, but if we are at least decent mothers to our own children, they will not normally abandon us. In fact, they will be healthier because we cut the tie to abuse and dysfunction rather than continuing it. My children won’t see the outrageous things my mothers does to me and others and think that is normal or acceptable behavior. We can teach our own children that it isn’t okay for people to treat us badly–even if they are related. We are not obligated to let people bully us and keep us in emotional chains. We can also teach our children that we ARE safe. We do love them. We are their safe place, and we can be their protectors when they are scared. I know I sure never got that from my mother!
So no, random naive woman on the internet. I did NOT cut off my mother because she wasn’t perfect. I cut contact because she is a psychopath. I won’t be friendly with her any more than I’d be buddies with Charles Manson because while her crimes were not as obvious, her mental condition was the same. She uses, hurts, and manipulates others–especially me–for fun and cruelty.