Sunday, May 25, 2008

2 year anniversary

2 years ago today I told you, mom, that I could no longer have you in my life. You cried so hard I thought you were going to hyperventilate. Your 3 kids told you that we couldn’t take it anymore-the rages, the playing favorites or outright ignoring your dtrs when your son was around, the revolving door admissions to the psych unit.

How does that song go? Something about wanting a person to stay gone……I’m better when you’re gone, mom. I’m sorry to say that yet it’s true. I can’t be a dtr and your friend/appt maker/prescription picker upper/rescuer that calls 911 when you try to kill yourself. It isn’t even so much that I can’t do it mom but that I won’t anymore. You have a use for me when there’s a crisis because you taught me well that I was the one that needed to save you. If I could just keep saving you then surely one of those times you’d know how much I loved you. I just had to prove it! How much I wanted to know without any doubts or conditions that you loved me. Each time I picked up the pieces for you I prayed that this would be the time it all changed, that this time you really would stick with DBT and recover. That this time I would finally have a mother. That this time I had proven myself worthy of you.

I will never forget walking into your house to find you passed out on the bed and your suicide note on the kitchen counter. You put me in the position of playing God. I had the option to not call 911 and to be honest mom, I hesitated to call. My first thought was how I could get out of the house and leave no trace I had been there. I wanted to let you die. It wasn’t just for my sake-I still wonder today if it wouldn’t have been better for you.

I’m sorry you are so miserable, mom. I know you are. I saw it growing up, how you bought more and more clothes as if those expensive pieces of fabric somehow made you a better person. I saw it when you tried to tell me my father, your husband, was worthless. It was all transparent, mom. What you accused dad of were things you yourself had done. YOU had the affair, YOU hid $$$ while bills went unpaid, YOU gave all your attention to work instead of to your children. YOU were the bottomless pit that would never be filled, not me.

So much projection, mom. While I know a lot of it has to do with having BPD that doesn’t give you a free pass. The very things you hate about/bitch about in others are present in you. You passed on your own allegedly miserable childhood to your children. Treatment was repeatedly turned down by you. It was easier to make me the scapegoat, wasn’t it? I see that now. Unable to face and/or take responsibility for the pain you felt and afflicted on others, you tried to use your own child to absolve yourself. It’s as if you somehow thought if you could make me crazier than you, then it justified your treatment of me.

I don’t think you will ever know the full extent of your abusive parenting. What you did was a systematic annihilation of me. I liked a green blazer? You bought a red one for me because it looked better. This was constant as I grew up. It didn't matter what I liked or disliked, everything was decided by you. The unspoken message was that I wasn’t even capable of making minor decisions. I wanted to go to a performing arts high school? It was a lot of work, you said, and did I really think I had some sort of talent? I didn’t send in the application and when you found out I hadn't sent it in I was given a stern lecture about shaping up and following thru on things. When I lost 40 lbs and dad told me I looked great you fled the room in tears. No one could console you as you sobbed over and over that no one paid attention to you. Well GOD FORBID the attention not focus on you every second of every day.

I gained my weight back after that. I thought I had done something wrong, showed you up or something. That was your hold on me-the constant belittling, the whispered criticisms, all that crap from you destroyed any sense of self I had. I thought I owed you something. I thought you would love me if I showed you that realized I was an inferior person to you. Somehow I had come to relate my captor. I saw myself as you did, well actually
I saw myself as you saw yourself.

I never really existed for you, did I? I know that now. I was a convenient target for you. Even now, as you try to turn relatives and family friends against your kids, I can see that it isn’t your children you miss. It’s the things you thought we were. You miss an easy target on which to blame your own crappy life. You want back your golden child because that child’s accomplishments mean that YOU are worth something. Not one thought was ever given to my brother, it was all about what he can do for you, how good he can make you look.

You worked so hard to keep us apart. He was the good one, I was the bad one, little sister was the spare target whenever bro or I wasn’t around. And that, mom, is what I give you on our 2nd anniversary. I give you the gift of knowledge that your children have grown wiser and closer in these past 2 years. We have discovered the lies you told about us to the other. We have each refuted the lies you told and we now treat the other with only honesty, trust and respect.

I’m glad you’re gone. Please stay that way.

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