Posts Tagged ‘Parent’

Dear Mom and Dad,

You’re not my parents, but I still love you.

I don’t know when we disconnected, but it happened. I started taking care of myself and my sister without a second thought towards you. You may not have realized, but us kids saw that you were no longer there for us. Caring for ourselves became the natural, because nobody else would do it. Even when we asked, you wouldn’t DO anything.

You didn’t help physically or emotionally. In fact you emotionally abused us. Well Mom did the abusing, but, Dad… you let it happen and helped place the blame on us when in situations out of our control. Neither of you parented. I don’t think you even remembered how to do it or noticed whether we were even there. All you knew was the Illness. All you saw was the Illness.

I’m not sad about your absence. My world without you shone with curiosity and exploration and love for my siblings and friends. I knew I could handle things on my own. Only when you decided to show up and wreck my carefully constructed life with misconstrued ideas of what parenting means did I have a problem. Just seriously, fuck off on the parenting shit. All you managed to accomplish was a serious mind-fucking. It’s a full time job, not a fair-weather hobby. It’s not something to do to look socially acceptable or to give yourself confidence in your life status.

These are futures.

So, no. I never considered you my parents. I played along to make our lives easier, because honestly what parent enjoys hearing that they are not parents?

None. And nobody wants to deal with the drama following it either.

But I remember the good times. I close my eyes and look back on the smiles, the laughs. I love seeing you on occasion. Really, I just love you. I want a relationship with you, but I want it to be real. I’m tired of playing into these roles that don’t really exist. I’m old enough now that you can wrap you head around the idea of an OTHER category of relationship.

Mom and Dad,

You’re not my parents, but can we be friends?

Health. I’ve always been in tip top physical shape, but my life is beyond unhealthy.

Growing up, I lived for my mother. She lived for herself. I never earned her approval, and even worse, she convinced me that I was such a horrible person that she wanted to kill herself. So she did.

Although her suicide attempts weren’t successful, I fell into a never-ending trap of trying to become the daughter she dreamed of. I changed everything about myself, but it was never good enough. My looks were “atrocious”. My personality was “awkward” and “nerdy” and “selfish”. I was a “damn dyke” in her eyes before I even knew what the word meant. This was a nice day with mommy dearest, and I’ll not bore you with the nastier bits.

I learned how to hate myself and I did a damn good job of it.  I lived life as a teenage insomniac who squirmed in her bed at night with unbearable self hatred. My body literally couldn’t hold all of the disgusting feelings I kept. I eventually realized that all the parts I originally liked about myself were the “unacceptable” bits in my mothers eyes. As a freshman in high school, I couldn’t even recognize myself.

By the time I realized I wanted to be me, I was lost in a world of pleasing others. It was like using a shovel to dig yourself into a hole, then figuring out that a shovel wont help you climb out.

One of my main purposes in life had been to protect my little sister from feeling the way I did. As I transitioned away from living for my mother, I only tripped and fell into another hole, stuck living for another person again.

I threw myself into work and school and lived a full life. Essentially I avoided having time to think about who I was, to put aside the disgusting feelings. I was ugly and I knew it but I planned on doing the best I could with what I had. A pessimistic sort of optimism, huh?

I’m about to be a sophomore in college. This summer I am working as a lifeguard at the local Y. Every day my bikini line shaving job and uneven breasts are displayed to the world. My tan lines are horrific and my hair gets pool-frizzy.

At some point this summer, it just clicked. There was a ding in my mind that said “I’m pretty”. I felt confident and ready, without anything in particular to be ready for. I just felt pretty.

I know that looks aren’t what matters and so on. I know that many people think of words like “pretty” as objectifying. But to someone who has never felt that way in their life, it was more of an enlightening wake up call. I’m more confident with guys and people, not because they might like my looks, but because I like my looks. It’s easier to socialize when you don’t feel inferior to everyone around you.

I started to do more things for myself. I started to let my sister take care of herself more, since I spoil her too much anyways. I started reaching out for the things that made me happy, because I craved that pretty feeling. Living for myself, I think I’m on the verge of a healthier lifestyle.

Feeling pretty is the key to breaking out of my cage, because a good appearance proves that my mom is wrong about me and who I am.

 

People naturally want to protect others. So if, for instance, there really were a velociraptor on the loose, most people would simultaneously hide and call up all their loved ones to warn them.

However, short of a natural disaster or prehistoric beast wrecking havoc, the lines of when to help or allow others to help you is a bit blurrier.

Personally, I lean towards the independent side. I would love to be able to claim it is from this huge confidence that I can handle anything that comes my way. Really, I would. But a lot of the time it’s not the truth. Nobody is that perfect.

In reality, I am just too stubborn, too afraid, and just don’t know how to ask for help.

Maybe it stems from the fact that people are always coming to me for help, even people I don’t know. I need to look like I know what I am doing for their sake and I honestly want to help.

Maybe it stems from the fact that I was always told to keep everything a secret. Problems were not to be shared (especially outside the family)and whining was never tolerated. Not to mention it is unfair to place burdens on people you love. Up until last spring, I never told even my closest friends the most pressing problems in my life.

Maybe it stems from the fact that there was never anybody there for me to rely on, so I told myself I would just do everything myself. Fake it till you make it. Always act like you know what you’re doing and you will find a way to accomplish it. If you don’t do things for yourself, they won’t get done. My first car crash was just a fender bender, but four police officers and five firemen were involved. I was terrified. My dad was over an hour away and I couldn’t call my mom who was five minutes away. She had been unstable the day before, and to be honest I was afraid she would attack a police officer and create a whole host of other problems I had to take care of. In the end, you have to take care of yourself because you never know if someone will be there.

Maybe it stems from the fact that I wanted my sister to believe there was at least one capable person in her life who she could come to. God knows our parents were fair-weather. She looked up to me. Asked me how to do things. I had to explore the world and learn how to do things so I could take her hand and guide her through. Eventually that ended when she got older. Though she still does ask me things, it is as a best friend that I answer her.

No matter why I am the way I am, it doesn’t change the fact that I’m handicapped. In this social world, I don’t know how to accept help from others. Some friends push me away thinking I don’t trust them. I do. I just don’t know how to confide in them or ask for help.

Some friends think I’m arrogant. I’m not. I just pretend I know what I’m doing. I just pretend I’m not scared.

Some friends think they can dump every single little problem on me because I either have no problems or I am mature enough to handle everything. I have problems. I handle them with a good attitude but that doesn’t mean I never get stressed or upset.

Some friends try to be there for me, but I can’t. I just can’t.

Mostly it’s because the less you rely on people, the less you confide in them, then the less they know about you. And if people don’t know what’s important to you, they can’t use it to hurt you.

I learned that one from mommy dearest.

If someone never shows you love as well as verbally and occasionally physically abusing you, it makes sense to just write them off. They’re not worth your time.

But that’s not how it works.

You can’t control who you love but you can set boundaries. Once my sister goes off to college and is independent of our parents I plan on doing whats best for ME, not my family. In just a couple years I will have my own life. I can’t wait.

 

Saturday night, 3 AM: I curl up on the floor covered in blood.

Friday night: I stayed at my brother’s apartment since I seemed unwelcome in my own home. However, I never intended to stay there past a few days. I needed to be with my sister and try to tame my bipolar mother the Bear. My mother’s twisted opinions don’t dictate my choices.

Saturday morning: I was about three inches away from tearing off my brother’s girlfriend’s head. I mean come on! I’m not a barbie doll for her entertainment. Damn Yankee. My patience had run thin between the girl time and the incessant calls from my rabid Bear. I knew things were getting bad at home.Even though my sister wasn’t home most of the time since it was a weekend, I wanted to be there to protect her. She’s my babygirl. There was talk of having Christmas at their apartment since I wasn’t welcome home and my brother refused to go home. The smell of cat pee might bother our sister but I could honestly care less. As long as we had a somewhat peaceful Christmas.

Saturday night, 5 PM: Called my dad and got the scoop. Horrible news back in H-Town. Spent some time with my brother once he got off work because to be honest I had no idea when I might see him again.  After a quick good bye, I hopped in the car and drove frantically off into the night.

I have to admit… my speed would have gotten me a felony at some points. The entire three hour drive, I fought back my tears and sang at the top of my lungs, beating in volume all the artists pounding out of my speakers. Being alone in a car, racing back to pain and a broken home, the world felt so cold and lonely. The knowledge that other people were enjoying the season and preparing for more Christmas joy only made me feel lonelier.

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I was and still am trapped in an endless cycle of desperation. I knew perfectly well what would be waiting for me at the end of the road. In a way, I was used to it. It’s my life.

Saturday night, 10 PM: I pulled into my driveway and went up to our other car. My babygirl peacefully slept, curled up in the drivers seat, too scared to go inside alone. So instead, she waited hours for me to arrive. I coaxed her out and settled her upstairs. She was angry, having already seen the damage. She sat there ranting about how stupid the bear was, claiming that the Mess just proved her idiocy. She ranted about how the neighbors were texting her being nosy. For the record, there is a difference between texting ‘Are you okay?’ and ‘What happened?’ when you see police and ambulances outside someone’s house. Neither get you answers, but one at least shows honest concern.

Once she was calm, I crept down the stairs to brave the master bedroom. I opened the door and nearly puked.

Blood. There was blood everywhere. Everything gleamed with red: the blankets, the floor, the walls, a pencil, and even some shoes. I sat there, lonelier than ever, staring at my mother’s latest suicide attempt.

This is honestly one of the hardest things I have ever had to do, but I didn’t want my father to have to when he was home from the hospital. I have cleaned up after my mother all the time: broken dishes, broken walls, broken furniture, minor blood from minor cuts…but in the past my mother only attempted suicide through overdosing (not including one gun incident). This time she stabbed herself. Imagine walking into a room and seeing the blood of one of the people you love most…everywhere. Like it’s an omnipresent being, staring down on you from all directions. All I could think as I stared was how is she alive?

I started with the bed. I moved her bloody, torn jeans out of the way and I grabbed a couple blankets curled up on the corner of the bed, thinking at first glance that they looked fairly clean. Oh how wrong I was. As I uncrumpled the white blanket, the color red assaulted me making me freeze and squeeze my eyes shut to get myself back under control. With each bit of blanket I revealed, there was more glistening blood. It’s not that somewhat inoffensive brown color that dried bloodstains get, but a color so bright that you could almost see it gushing out of a body.

I poured liquid detergent on the largest blood stains to try and break up the organic matter and worked it in with my fingers. Once I felt the wet of the blood and the warmth of the chemical reaction taking place with the detergent, I made a choking gurgling noise that even surprised me before stumbling out of the laundry room and back into the bedroom. Feeling the blood made it so much more real. It took me several minutes to get my emotions back in check. But I went back and dutifully fought back tears while working in the detergent. I couldn’t cry. I had to go upstairs when I was done and be emotional support for my sister.

After managing to get one load of laundry going, I got started on the carpet. There were no huge bloodstains anywhere but there were drops EVERYWHERE. I used the liquid detergent to break up the blood because I couldn’t find carpet cleaner. I maniacally scrubbed at each blood spot, in disgust, because no matter where I was working, some part of me was touching more blood. Rinse and repeat.

Saturday night, 3 AM: I curl up on the floor covered in my mother’s blood…finally done.

One of the larger stains.

One of the larger stains.

One of the first blankets. The blue is detergent.

One of the first blankets. The blue is detergent.

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The clean up

The clean up process at it’s cleanest.

I started at 10:30 and didn’t finish until 3AM. By the end my arms were darkened with blood. I washed my hands and arms at least half a dozen times. I washed the blood away, but could still feel it.

It wasn’t the size of the blood stains (the largest was about the length of my fore arm and the width of my head and there were only around 8 large ones) but it was the sheer numbers that overwhelmed me. Every time I thought I was close to the end… I found more. I peeled back each layer of the bed only to find a stain just as large as the one above it. I thought it would never end.

I drank a little tequila to help take off the edge. Then crawled up the stairs to my sister.

It was just another Saturday night.

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I hate Christmas. I hate all holidays and I always dread their approach. Each winter, I stand in a field facing down an approaching army with nothing but the clothes on my back. Each winter, I lose this battle. Christmas will never be something to look forward to.

This year for instance, my mother called me and told me not to bother coming home. She screamed at me for a ridiculously long time about how I’m an awful person for not cutting off contact with my older brother. Because that is obviously something any reasonable parent should demand from their children – Don’t talk to your brother who you love or else you have no home.

Though the conversation over text was extremely calm compared to the phone calls I think it demonstrates her delusional self rather well. She is well spoken and very intelligent with strong, though twisted, logic skills. However, she is very… Bipolar. To her, I am only ever as good as what I can give her and what expectations I can meet. That is not a real mother.

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So she called me and disowned me…again. Unlike the past however I was not in an area I knew well. After being kicked out of my dorm for the next month, I didn’t want to curl up in a playground tunnel again because I didn’t feel safe. How about a kip in the woods? Well, I didn’t know where the drug dealing spots were. So I spent the day at a Barnes and Nobles waiting to hear back from my brother. I was there for 11 hours.

I read a book. Built a lego home.

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Talked to a handsome man who asked me out on the town with his friends. I declined, then regretted it due to extreme boredom. Eventually the store closed and I curled up and went to sleep in my car. I had an offer for somewhere to crash about two hours away but staying with that person would have included a whole host of social problems that I didn’t have the energy for. I’d prefer a playground tunnel.  About midnight my brother called me and told me his new address, telling me to come on over.

Somewhere in between, I mentioned my location to my best friend, H. She almost cried when I told her why I was lounging around in a book store. I didn’t mind, personally. The book store had controlled air temperature, free entertainment, clean restroom facilities and a small Starbucks. For the life of me, I couldn’t understand why she was upset. I actually considered myself lucky right then.

Her pain was for the unconditional love I will never have. Her pain was for my constant rejection by the person who is supposed to accept me.

But, I accepted this fate a long time ago. And to be honest, if I were given the chance to change my life in any way… I wouldn’t. It would mean sacrificing all the small moments that mean so much to me… that my current happiness is based on. Those are my life. Changing the bad would mean changing the good and changing who I am. I happen to love my life, thank you very much.

I’d be lying if I told you I never got jealous of people with normal parents. I often sit there and dream of what life would be like if my mom were happy for me, proud of me, there for me. But she never has been and never will be. I dream of a world where my mother wasn’t too ashamed of me to attend my high school graduation. A world where she was actually proud of my good school ranking. I dream of a world where my mom was sitting there after my first day of my first job asking excitedly how it went…not attacking me for going in the first place. I dream of a world where I am loved.

So, yes. I do have pangs of jealousy when I see pictures on Facebook or Instagram of my friends getting care packages, cute text messages, or going home and being hugged because they were sorely missed. It’s all the little signs they over look… all those small indications of love that they are so used to, that they don’t have to earn… those are why I am jealous. So, sue me!

So as I mentioned in the past, I am still a virgin. Not due to a lack of people who want to screw me or an emotional attachment to the act. I’m just too prideful to leave myself vulnerable to being embarrassed.

Recently, I went to another college to visit friends. It was something of a desperate visit, a much needed escape before I exploded emotionally. Between my mother and school and both my brothers having mental breakdowns and my grandmother dying before I got the chance to say goodbye… I barely managed to keep still. Too many emotions. My coping mechanism for that is always a change of place and friendly faces.

Nate, the friend who inspired my post about being hopelessly naive, no longer speaks to me. I think I broke his heart. For the longest time I believed all he wanted from me was sex. I thought he wanted to “finish the trifecta” since he had screwed two of my closest friends already. He told me time and time again that he wanted me to be his girlfriend, and I always just told him that I would have sex with him eventually but did NOT want to be anything more than friends.

But I think that’s beside the point. The point is: when I hung out with Nate, he pressured me to sleep with him, to suck his dick, to make out with him or to date him. He is a great guy and would NEVER force a girl against her will, but he is a guy who knows what he wants and is willing to do all the convincing it takes. He thought that if we slept together, he would have the chance to prove himself.

His behavior made sense to me…seemed normal to me. People know what they want and work to get what they want. Everyone for their own interests… It’s just how the world is. It’s how the world I was raised in was. My bipolar mother only ever thought or acted on her own desires. I was only good in her eyes as long as I served a purpose in gaining what she wanted. And so I had to work hard to keep my worth.

But that night when I went to visit my friends, I ended up staying at one of my best friend/ sometimes fling’s place. Let’s call him J. We are perfect friends. It’s easy for us to be around each other. It’s just natural and comfortable. I had planned on crashing on his couch because, to be honest, last time I checked he was an awful kisser (bad at using tongue) and the last thing I wanted was to give him the wrong idea. But when I went to go out to the other room, he told me I could crash on his bed as long as I didn’t mind scooting over for him.

When he finally crawled in bed with me, we cuddled. He nervously asked if that was okay. He held me all night, without expecting a thing in return. In the morning, all he dared to do was give me a kiss on the cheek while cuddling. He nervously asked if that was okay. We had made out in the past so I knew it wasn’t his nervousness. He simply did not want to do anything that I did not want. I took things from there.

I went farther with him than I have with anyone in the past. But just before we had sex, I told him we shouldn’t go any farther. My reason? I wanted this memory to be characterized by his good intentions. I wanted to remember it by his innocent desire to not push me. And I felt comfortable enough to do that. I knew J would respect my wishes without question. In his place, Nate would have wheedled and whined and tried to convince me.

I felt bad about the situation down under I was leaving him to deal with, so I offered to try and give him a blow job. I felt almost obligated to try. I felt like I was expected to. He looked at me with a surprised face and said ” You don’t have to. It’s only what you’re okay with. I mean I’d like it, but it’s completely up to you.”

I’m used to people demanding what they want from me, and me either choosing to assert myself and turn them down or giving them what they want. I am not used to people thinking of what it is I want, when it might not coincide with what they want. J made me feel treasured. And I hope we will always be friends… also I plan on sleeping with him soon.

I did not end up giving him a blow job.