Any mama's who were abandoned by their moms in childhood/teens? - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 108 Old 07-09-2008, 04:04 PM
 
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Now I worry about what will happen to my mom when she is too old to care for herself. She has no retirement savings, no assets, and no plan. My sister is emotionally unstable so that leaves me. I used to think I would tell her too bad, you left me so now you are on your own, but then I think about what kind of example that would set for my kids and I think I probably will help her out in some way.
I am also struck by the number of amazing mommas posting on this thread, who despite not having their moms, are now there for their kids and being awesome moms. :
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We are living this hell right now. My mom isn't too old to care for herself, but she's disabled. So here we are living with her to help take care of her. I thought we could do it and work it out but I don't know. We've been living with her for almost two years now and seriously it is hell. Dh really wants to leave and just say screw her, leave her in a nursing home. I feel that way a lot of times, but I'm not at the point yet where I can do that and not feel terrible guilt.


I feel for you two, and for others who live with the same, what should I call it? Burden? Responsibility? Guilt?

It is very tough.

I lived my entire childhood below the poverty line, and neither parent ever really got their act together to take care of me when I was a child.

And yet, despite that, here I am as an adult wondering how I will, and if I should take care of them in their old age, since neither of them ever solved the problems that plagued their life and made a plan.

I feel overwhelmed a lot. I feel tapped. And then I feel bad about feeling that way. And then I feel guilty. And then I feel shame. And then I feel resentful and mad. And then I feel overwhelmed. It's a vicious cycle.

I wasted my young adulthood (literally I did waste it and for the most part put my life on hold other than college and career building...fun things other people did? I didn't do. I was taking care or worrying about my family). I wasted so much time, money, and energy.

I feel like I constantly put my life on the back burner to help others. It gets tiring.

It puts strain on everything else. Career. Marriage. Parenting.

But like you said in your posts, I feel a strong pull to show my children by example that the right thing to do is be humane and care for someone who is unable to care for themselves.

How do you do that without dragging yourself down, though? That is my constant question.
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#62 of 108 Old 07-09-2008, 04:06 PM
 
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I am also struck by the number of amazing mommas posting on this thread, who despite not having their moms, are now there for their kids and being awesome moms. :
Yes. This thread, and these posts, have been so helpful to me. It's nice to know we can be strong and thrive after going through hell.

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#63 of 108 Old 07-10-2008, 08:46 PM
 
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Well I have come back to this thread, because for some reason, my past is haunting me so bad lately. I want peace, closure to move on.
My mom was an awesome mom. She made cookies from scratch, she stayed home with us kids(3 including me) she cooked homemade meals everynight. She played with us, took us shopping, she was an ideal mom. And then my sister went to kindergarten, I was 8. My mom started to do things to keep herself occupied. She started bodybuilding and taking steriods. When I was 10 years old I was spending the night with my friend on the night before Easter. I came home Easter morning, and all of my moms trophies were broken everywhere on the living room floor. My mom was gone, my dad was crying in the kitchen, telling me my mom was gone that they were getting a divorce. They never even fought once. If they did, we never knew, honestly. This was such a shock, believe me. I never saw my mom or knew where she was, for 5 years. I heard she ran off with a woman. She actually did. I remember that easter, asking for my basket. Typical kid, huh? Mom has just left and I all thought of was my freaking Easter basket. Turns out my mom is bipolar. She fought it all those years, trying to be perfect but couldnt keep it up I guess. We lived with my dad. My dad turned into an alcoholic, he did not work and we were severly neglected, left to fend for ourselves most times. Also I did all the care of my younger siblings, which left me with no childhood. I wish I had a mom. I had nobody when I had my sons. Nobody to hold me when I left my abusive marriage. Nobody to comfort me when my first boyfriend broke up with me. Nobody to hug me ever. My dad never hugged me, he told me I reminded him of my mom too much.

I think I am a good mom now. I am too protective of my children though. I am so scared they will think I dont love them so I over compesate by being too loving and too attached. I am scared to leave their sides. My sister is this way too. I am trying not to be this way, but its hard. I had to learn all the girl things in my adulthood. I still dont wear makeup though. I had to learn to cook all by myself and how to do everything. I am strong, but I wish that we all had our mamas.

Me and my wonderful husband serve God. Blessed with twin girls 2/11/11. <3

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#64 of 108 Old 07-10-2008, 09:13 PM
 
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Well I have come back to this thread, because for some reason, my past is haunting me so bad lately. I want peace, closure to move on.
My mom was an awesome mom. She made cookies from scratch, she stayed home with us kids(3 including me) she cooked homemade meals everynight. She played with us, took us shopping, she was an ideal mom. And then my sister went to kindergarten, I was 8. My mom started to do things to keep herself occupied. She started bodybuilding and taking steriods. When I was 10 years old I was spending the night with my friend on the night before Easter. I came home Easter morning, and all of my moms trophies were broken everywhere on the living room floor. My mom was gone, my dad was crying in the kitchen, telling me my mom was gone that they were getting a divorce. They never even fought once. If they did, we never knew, honestly. This was such a shock, believe me. I never saw my mom or knew where she was, for 5 years. I heard she ran off with a woman. She actually did. I remember that easter, asking for my basket. Typical kid, huh? Mom has just left and I all thought of was my freaking Easter basket. Turns out my mom is bipolar. She fought it all those years, trying to be perfect but couldnt keep it up I guess. We lived with my dad. My dad turned into an alcoholic, he did not work and we were severly neglected, left to fend for ourselves most times. Also I did all the care of my younger siblings, which left me with no childhood. I wish I had a mom. I had nobody when I had my sons. Nobody to hold me when I left my abusive marriage. Nobody to comfort me when my first boyfriend broke up with me. Nobody to hug me ever. My dad never hugged me, he told me I reminded him of my mom too much.

I think I am a good mom now. I am too protective of my children though. I am so scared they will think I dont love them so I over compesate by being too loving and too attached. I am scared to leave their sides. My sister is this way too. I am trying not to be this way, but its hard. I had to learn all the girl things in my adulthood. I still dont wear makeup though. I had to learn to cook all by myself and how to do everything. I am strong, but I wish that we all had our mamas.

I hear the sadness that you carry in your heart. What a devastating change to your family. I am so sorry you did not get to keep having the childhood you needed, wanted, deserved.
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#65 of 108 Old 07-10-2008, 09:51 PM
 
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Well I have come back to this thread, because for some reason, my past is haunting me so bad lately. I want peace, closure to move on.
My mom was an awesome mom. She made cookies from scratch, she stayed home with us kids(3 including me) she cooked homemade meals everynight. She played with us, took us shopping, she was an ideal mom. And then my sister went to kindergarten, I was 8. My mom started to do things to keep herself occupied. She started bodybuilding and taking steriods. When I was 10 years old I was spending the night with my friend on the night before Easter. I came home Easter morning, and all of my moms trophies were broken everywhere on the living room floor. My mom was gone, my dad was crying in the kitchen, telling me my mom was gone that they were getting a divorce. They never even fought once. If they did, we never knew, honestly. This was such a shock, believe me. I never saw my mom or knew where she was, for 5 years. I heard she ran off with a woman. She actually did. I remember that easter, asking for my basket. Typical kid, huh? Mom has just left and I all thought of was my freaking Easter basket. Turns out my mom is bipolar. She fought it all those years, trying to be perfect but couldnt keep it up I guess. We lived with my dad. My dad turned into an alcoholic, he did not work and we were severly neglected, left to fend for ourselves most times. Also I did all the care of my younger siblings, which left me with no childhood. I wish I had a mom. I had nobody when I had my sons. Nobody to hold me when I left my abusive marriage. Nobody to comfort me when my first boyfriend broke up with me. Nobody to hug me ever. My dad never hugged me, he told me I reminded him of my mom too much.

I think I am a good mom now. I am too protective of my children though. I am so scared they will think I dont love them so I over compesate by being too loving and too attached. I am scared to leave their sides. My sister is this way too. I am trying not to be this way, but its hard. I had to learn all the girl things in my adulthood. I still dont wear makeup though. I had to learn to cook all by myself and how to do everything. I am strong, but I wish that we all had our mamas.


Your story made me feel an ache in my heart. You went through a lot.

I had a terrible childhood, as well. So, I understand where you are coming from. One of my parents left us as well, and there were many years where I didn't hear from or know where that parent was. It's still like that to this day.

The other parent was present, but not really present. The parent that stayed is probably the parent that should have left, and the parent that left was probably the parent that should have stayed. Weird how that can happen.

I've dealt with poverty, relatives who abuse drugs and alcohol, neglect, and you name it. But, while my life isn't perfect, I'm drug-free, not an alchoholic and lead a pretty healthy, kind, generous, and rooted life. I think I provide a good example, for the most part, for my children.

It still gets to me, though. I'm still sad and depressed about my childhood and my parents and what they did (and continue to do today). Is there a way to ever really get over it? I don't know. I think you just have to put it aside and keep it at a healthy distance. Bring it out every once in a while, but don't let it ruin your life.

I know what you say about not having anyone around to support you. My parents have always been so wrapped up in their own issues (big issues) that they have never been able to be there for me, or anyone else, at any time. They've missed pretty much every milestone and accomplishment in my life.

I try to shrug it off.

It was hard when I had a baby myself because I understood even less how they could do what they did when they had children. And I really started feeling the sadness that my child wouldn't have grandparents, much the way I didn't have parents.

One parent, however, could be a good parent if the other demons were ever solved. Sometimes the potential actually takes shape in real form, and I love when that happens. It's fleeting and gone in a matter of hours usually, though. But it makes me know that deep down, at least one of my parents did love me.

I don't know about you, but two things that keep me going are 1) education/self-improvement and 2) my baby.

From elementary school through college and career, academics was a salvation for me. Books, writing, and good grades kept me going.

And parenthood has had much the same impact.

Use your own children to create the family you want, and to heal.
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#66 of 108 Old 07-10-2008, 10:38 PM
 
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Can I just thank you all for posting your stories?

You've helped me understand a lot better about what my dsd has gone through, and what she is still dealing with today.

I'm so sorry for all of your losses.

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#67 of 108 Old 07-12-2008, 01:24 AM
 
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I've said it before and I'll say it again-- there is something very redemptive for me about motherhood, and in particular in mothering my daughter.

I feel this too. Though I feel like I am doing it from scratch. But I'm loving it. I am taking everything I learned from my dad and living w/ 3 boys and applying it to raising a girl.

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But like you said in your posts, I feel a strong pull to show my children by example that the right thing to do is be humane and care for someone who is unable to care for themselves.

How do you do that without dragging yourself down, though? That is my constant question.
My motto is "cut wood, carry water" we do it because we have to and we modify whenever we can, a new way to cut the wood, a new way to transport the water. I always believed that a childs goal should be to do better than their parents, and in some cases, better than better.

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#68 of 108 Old 07-13-2008, 10:22 AM
 
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I'm a little hesitant to post here since my story is a little bit different.

My mom was an attached, crunchy, stay-at-home mom, but she was very selfish and self-absorbed. When she decided to leave my dad, she just left one day. Without me. I was a little one-year-old attached toddler. She just left one day with my dad's friend (my future stepfather) and I didn't see her for a year. They say whgen I saw her again I didn't know who she was.

Eventually, after she got her life all set up and "ready" for me, she got custody of me and took me away from my dad, whom I was very bonded to by then. She was a very cold and critical mother. My half-siblings were extremely favored. She made me call my stepfather "Daddy" against my will. She basically tried to write my dad out of my life completely. I know I "had" my mom but she and my stepfather were just always cold and loveless to me. I felt like she wasn't my "real" mom. They told me all kinds of lies about my dad, too, which I didn't realize at the time. Just disgusting people.

I ran away when I was 16 because living with her was miserable. My dad didn't have room for me then so I moved in with my grandma. I tried to rebuild a relationship with my mother later, because I thought it was the larger thing to do, but she has never apologized for anything-- blames me for everything-- and she is still the same person she always was. So I just recently, finally, gave up on her being a real mom to me and I am cutting her out of my life.

So there, that's that.

♥ blogger astrologer mom to three cool kiddos, and trying to figure out this divorce thing-- Blossom and Glow ♥

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#69 of 108 Old 07-13-2008, 12:13 PM
 
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I'm a little hesitant to post here since my story is a little bit different.

My mom was an attached, crunchy, stay-at-home mom, but she was very selfish and self-absorbed. When she decided to leave my dad, she just left one day. Without me. I was a little one-year-old attached toddler. She just left one day with my dad's friend (my future stepfather) and I didn't see her for a year. They say whgen I saw her again I didn't know who she was.

Eventually, after she got her life all set up and "ready" for me, she got custody of me and took me away from my dad, whom I was very bonded to by then. She was a very cold and critical mother. My half-siblings were extremely favored. She made me call my stepfather "Daddy" against my will. She basically tried to write my dad out of my life completely. I know I "had" my mom but she and my stepfather were just always cold and loveless to me. I felt like she wasn't my "real" mom. They told me all kinds of lies about my dad, too, which I didn't realize at the time. Just disgusting people.

I ran away when I was 16 because living with her was miserable. My dad didn't have room for me then so I moved in with my grandma. I tried to rebuild a relationship with my mother later, because I thought it was the larger thing to do, but she has never apologized for anything-- blames me for everything-- and she is still the same person she always was. So I just recently, finally, gave up on her being a real mom to me and I am cutting her out of my life.

So there, that's that.
Well, we all have different stories, but I'm glad you posted yours here. Each story may be different, but the effects they've had on us are where the similarities lie, and also in how we parent our own children.
I just wanted to say that your running away at 16 sounds like it was a healthy, self-preserving thing to do.
I have cut my mom out of my life at times, like after she behaved so horrendously at my wedding, I did not speak to her at all for a year. It was just something I had to do to maintain sanity in my life. My sister and I have to remind ourselves of a saying, whenever we "forget" that our mom cannot give us what we need, and that is, "Mom is like a soda machine. You put money in, press the button and the machine says, "we're out of coke". We put the money in again. Press the button again. Machine says, "we're out of coke". How many times will we do this before we realize, this person (soda machine) is not going to give us what we need/want?
We're getting pretty good, my sister and I, at getting our needs met elsewhere, but sometimes we get overwhelmed with needing our mother, needing her to be there for us or to do things for us, even as adults, that she just isn't willing or able to do.
Hugs to you, it's not easy, but you sound like you have a resilient part of yourself, LionTigerBear, and that will make you a strong momma for your kids!
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#70 of 108 Old 07-13-2008, 12:27 PM
 
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I wanted to ask those who are following this thread, if you have found "other mothers" and how this has helped you in your life. I realized in my mid-twenties that I was sort of drawn to women friends who were a bit older than me and realized they were helping to "mother" me. Sometimes they knew it and sometimes they didn't, but this has always been something that has helped heal the losses of my own mom.
For example, my friend Linda who helped me shop for my wedding dress, my high school boyfriend's mother who was much nicer than he was and talked to me a lot, let me just hang out at their house; my across the street neighbor who talked to me about pregnancy with my first child and cleaned our house and made us food while I was giving birth.
Do others have women like this in their life? How does this help you?
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#71 of 108 Old 07-13-2008, 01:51 PM
 
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Do others have women like this in their life? How does this help you?
Definitely. Thanks for bringing this up. My grandma for one, has always been there for me. I have an aunt that I'm fairly close to, and she bailed me out on ocassion in my teenage years when I really needed it. That means a lot to me. This aunt always believes in me and respects my decisions. I love her so much. Also, a huge presence in my life was one of my dad's girlfriends. She has no children of her own and she was sweet and patient with me and extremely supportive. She and my dad were together for about 8 years and when they split up, it was really hard on me. I always hoped they would be together forever. I often wished she was my mom. But after they broke up she has remained a really big part of my life. She is a lot like a stepmom to me. Unfortunately she lives on the other side of the country, but we keep in touch.

Also, I often latched onto my friend's moms growing up. One of those moms took me in for a while when I was a teen. I will always be grateful to her. Another of those moms I still keep in touch with, even though I'm not in touch with her daughter anymore. Just the mom. These women showed me what being a mom COULD be like, and helped me to understand I wasn't crazy and I wasn't a bad, stupid kid, like my mom wanted me to believe.

Even with these relationships, it still has left an empty spot, I mean, it's not a direct replacement, you know? But I'm starting to see that I need to turn more to these kind and loving women in my life and give them more of me-- relationships that I actually get something out of, what a concept-- and waste less energy moping about my bio mom. I really have been SO blessed.

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#72 of 108 Old 07-13-2008, 04:23 PM
 
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This is the first time I've checked back in to this thread in long time. I'm feeling very teary in a "good cry" kind of way. Many, many hugs to everyone. s

I look at my beautiful son sleeping next to me right now--he is roughly about the age I was at the time of my mother's suicide. I can't even imagine how he might feel, how he could possibly understand it, if his mama happened to not be there the next day. It rips me up inside and I feel tremendous grief for my young self.

But on the other hand, my mother's death has absolutely defined me as a person and has put me on a path of self-exploration that I'm not sure most people go down. For that, I have to be grateful. Also, it has defined me as a mother--my largest goal is that all the days that I'm alive, my son (and my future children) will know, without a doubt, that their mama loves them very much.
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#73 of 108 Old 07-16-2008, 11:54 AM
 
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Wow. I just read all the new posts to all you strong women!

I have also looked to older women for the mothering I missed out on, but t the same time, I was so shy/scared/unsure of myself that I never really connected to these women...I think I was so terrified of being "abandoned" again. I remember absolutely aching to have a great connection with one of my professors at college - I thought she was just the COOLEST...but even though I did have a few revealing conversations with her (I was taking one of her classes when I began having flashbacks to the sexual abuse I went through in the hands of my stepfather) and she was VERY supportive of me...I could never take the next step to having a meaningful relationship with her

Now my MIL is the mother I've never had...but even now I still have reservations (and I've been with her son for 7 1/2 years now!)- it is SO HARD for me to trust the older women in my life. Even with my reservations, she is absolutely the most patient, kind, generous, loving, forgiving women I have ever had the pleasure to know. And she absolutely ADORES me :

Also, I have another book recommendation: "Celebrate Your Self" by Dorothy Briggs (she also wrote "Your Child's Self Esteem" which I am very interested in reading now that I've read this one). This book is GREAT, and it is already helping me greatly in trying to resolve the major self-esteem issues I have from the way I was "raised"...I think it would be very helpful to alot of the women here
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#74 of 108 Old 07-17-2008, 02:46 PM
 
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#75 of 108 Old 07-17-2008, 03:14 PM
 
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For me, I think the state of abandonment was better, because I was being cared for by healthier, loving people. I think it was just more confusing when she came back in my life with her depression and mental issues.

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#76 of 108 Old 07-17-2008, 03:47 PM
 
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Absolutely being completely away from them is better.

I had a toxic mother, my dsd had a mother who was completely checked out before her death, and now we are dealing with an attachment disorder because of it. Between her issues and my issues, it's rough.

My son had a father who was absent and he didn't miss him at all.

You don't miss what you don't know exists.
But if someone is in your household treating you badly, you know it, and it scars you.

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#77 of 108 Old 07-17-2008, 06:07 PM
 
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Originally Posted by LionTigerBear View Post
I'm a little hesitant to post here since my story is a little bit different.

My mom was an attached, crunchy, stay-at-home mom, but she was very selfish and self-absorbed. When she decided to leave my dad, she just left one day. Without me. I was a little one-year-old attached toddler. She just left one day with my dad's friend (my future stepfather) and I didn't see her for a year. They say whgen I saw her again I didn't know who she was.

Eventually, after she got her life all set up and "ready" for me, she got custody of me and took me away from my dad, whom I was very bonded to by then. She was a very cold and critical mother. My half-siblings were extremely favored. She made me call my stepfather "Daddy" against my will. She basically tried to write my dad out of my life completely. I know I "had" my mom but she and my stepfather were just always cold and loveless to me. I felt like she wasn't my "real" mom. They told me all kinds of lies about my dad, too, which I didn't realize at the time. Just disgusting people.

I ran away when I was 16 because living with her was miserable. My dad didn't have room for me then so I moved in with my grandma. I tried to rebuild a relationship with my mother later, because I thought it was the larger thing to do, but she has never apologized for anything-- blames me for everything-- and she is still the same person she always was. So I just recently, finally, gave up on her being a real mom to me and I am cutting her out of my life.

So there, that's that.


You went through a lot.
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#78 of 108 Old 07-17-2008, 06:11 PM
 
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You went through a lot.
Thank you. That means a lot.

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#79 of 108 Old 07-17-2008, 06:16 PM
 
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So I just recently, finally, gave up on her being a real mom to me and I am cutting her out of my life.

So there, that's that.


This is so HARD to do. I think so many people underestimate or do not understand what this is like. It rocks you to the core.

I have finally done this (I think) for good.

I wish I would have done it 10 or 15 years ago. It would have saved me A LOT of trouble, heart ache, and money.

I still don't feel good about it, but at least it's closure, in a way. I don't think one would ever feel good about it. I know, for me, I grieve the loss of the mother I wanted, not the mother I really had. The real mother is very easy to leave (like I said, I wanted to do it years ago, but didn't out of feelings of obligation and my own hope that someday she would change). It's the death of a dream that is hard, but it's better than being let down and hurt continually.

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I wanted to ask those who are following this thread, if you have found "other mothers" and how this has helped you in your life.
Not really. I've never found a surrogate mother or mother figure, if that's what you mean. I do make friends easily with older women, but I also make friends easily with older men. None of them are surrogate parents for me, but I do recognize how good of a parent they are to their own children who are around my age (one can't help but compare and contrast, I think.)

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Even with these relationships, it still has left an empty spot, I mean, it's not a direct replacement, you know?




Yeah, I've found out that nothing really fills that hole or void in life, or that sense of abandonement...not marriage, not children, not new clothes, happy times, getting a college education, achieving things on my own, finding career success.

None of it fills the void completely. I can have a full and complete life, but there will always be a sense of loss that I didn't get to have that important parental relationship (and through no fault of my own). It tears me up.

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Do you mamas who have had absent mothers think it was better to have no mother at all (ie. abandonment, suicide) compared to one that was there but wasn't really there (ie. depression, withdrawl)?
I think it would have been better to not have her at all. I wish I would have shut her out of my life sooner. She's that toxic.

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Absolutely being completely away from them is better.

I had a toxic mother


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#80 of 108 Old 07-17-2008, 06:47 PM
 
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As much as I hate my mother for leaving, I would have hated her more for staying. So yeah, it's better that she left. I think I would have handled it better though if someone would have told me what was going on instead of her just disappearing one day. On days when I'm feeling overwhelmed by her I dream of disappearing on her when she needs me most just so she can see what it feels like.
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#81 of 108 Old 07-17-2008, 06:57 PM
 
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On days when I'm feeling overwhelmed by her I dream of disappearing on her when she needs me most just so she can see what it feels like.


I can understand that, I really can.

I don't ever feel like that...that I want to turn the tables on her, but I do regret that I spent so much time, money, and effort trying to make her life better for her, even after she treated me like she did when I was a child.

I feel like I had a rotten, terrible childhood because of her, and then I went on to completely waste my 20s trying to fix things in her life and other messes she made. I never did anything really for myself that decade, and instead spent time, money, and effort (not to mention heart ache and worry) on a lost cause.

So, yeah, I'm bitter and resentful that I ever felt an obligation to her. She never did anything to deserve that obligation, kindness, or generosity, that's for sure.

I am so stupid for ever letting my family touch my heart. They use and abuse everytime.
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This is so HARD to do. I think so many people underestimate or do not understand what this is like. It rocks you to the core.

I have finally done this (I think) for good.
Thank you. Good for you. It is so hard. It was really scary for me. Kind of still is. I guess time will make it easier.


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I know, for me, I grieve the loss of the mother I wanted, not the mother I really had. The real mother is very easy to leave (like I said, I wanted to do it years ago, but didn't out of feelings of obligation and my own hope that someday she would change). It's the death of a dream that is hard, but it's better than being let down and hurt continually.
Yes, yes, yes. This is so true. There were little moments where she would act nice for a second, where we seemed to almost connect, like she almost cared about me, and I hung onto those moments, but eventually I realized that those were the moments when she felt most narcisstically validated by me, and in a way she was just using me. There was no real caring, nothing unselfish in her temporary attention. And I was compromising and hurting myself by placing my hopes on those moments.

Now that I see that and it makes so much sense, I am so mad that I wouldn't want to have a relationship with her even if she got down on her knees and tearfully apologized for everything. I'm just DONE. (But still kinda scared about "leaving" her.)

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None of it fills the void completely. I can have a full and complete life, but there will always be a sense of loss that I didn't get to have that important parental relationship (and through no fault of my own). It tears me up.
It's a huge sense of loss, of something that should be there that isn't, of something bening "wrong" even. and yet, when I sit down and think about it now, I feel such a wave of relief. I'd rather be a motherless woman than have my mother of origin in my life.

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I feel like I had a rotten, terrible childhood because of her, and then I went on to completely waste my 20s trying to fix things in her life and other messes she made. I never did anything really for myself that decade, and instead spent time, money, and effort (not to mention heart ache and worry) on a lost cause.
I'm so sorry. That's really hard. I definitely wish that I had washed my hands of my mom back when I was 16 and left her house, wish I had never lookied back and just kept on going. Oh well, there was unfinished business there, I guess. But at least I am still in my twenties so I am grateful for that. I do think that we have to stay in these relationships until we take care of our unfinished business in the relationship.

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I am so stupid for ever letting my family touch my heart. They use and abuse everytime.
No, the fault is not with you. You are caring and compassionate and a little vulnerable (aren't we all?) You are not stupid, you are good-hearted and normal. And when you realized just how screwed up they are, you left them. Good for you.

Another question: Do any of the rest of you feel really drawn to adoption because of your experiences? I just can really connect with the sense of loss and abandonment that some foster kids must feel. I would seriously adopt like, 30 of those odler kids in need, if I thought I could properly mother all of them. As it is we aren't in a place to afford to adopt right now but I definitely see it in my future at some point.

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Another question: Do any of the rest of you feel really drawn to adoption because of your experiences? I just can really connect with the sense of loss and abandonment that some foster kids must feel. I would seriously adopt like, 30 of those odler kids in need, if I thought I could properly mother all of them. As it is we aren't in a place to afford to adopt right now but I definitely see it in my future at some point.
When I was younger I thought I would never be as bad of a mother as my mom. I was great with my son when it was just the 2 of us, but I'm finding it difficult to be a great mom to my dsd. She got a raw deal, and she has so many psychological problems that I find we can bring out the worst in each other at times, and it shows me I'm not completely healed myself. I am often furious with her late mother and the other relatives for damaging her emotionally, and even though I know it isn't her fault, I get angry at her behavior a lot. Then I get angry at myself for not being more patient.

I don't know if it's possible for all of us to ever get over it completely. I worry all the time that there's nothing I can do to help her and I'm only making things worse for both of us.

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#84 of 108 Old 07-17-2008, 08:34 PM
 
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Another question: Do any of the rest of you feel really drawn to adoption because of your experiences? I just can really connect with the sense of loss and abandonment that some foster kids must feel. I would seriously adopt like, 30 of those odler kids in need, if I thought I could properly mother all of them. As it is we aren't in a place to afford to adopt right now but I definitely see it in my future at some point.
Yes!

I think about adoption.

I always have, actually. When I was a child and also in my teens, I would day dream about one day having the means to adopt several children who I could "save." Looking back, I think I wanted to do for someone else what I wish could have happened to me.

Helping people, being kind, being generous has always been very important to me. Citizenship, charity, and service has always been really important to me, as well.

I think I tend to wear my heart on my sleeve and feel so much (too much?) empathy for people, especially disadvantaged children, the elderly, and the disabled, because I always felt so abandoned as a child.

I was always so hungry, never had any new toys, and never had socks or shoes that weren't worn out by someone else first. So, I always really feel for people who are down on their luck or need help.
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#85 of 108 Old 07-17-2008, 08:36 PM
 
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When I was younger I thought I would never be as bad of a mother as my mom.
:

Yes!

Me, too.

Even from a young age (5 or 6?) I knew my mom was a terrible mother, and that I wanted to be nothing like her.

That feeling only grew as I got older.
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#86 of 108 Old 07-17-2008, 08:40 PM
 
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I don't know if it's possible for all of us to ever get over it completely. I worry all the time that there's nothing I can do to help her and I'm only making things worse for both of us.


I know what you mean. Exactly.

How old are you?

I'm in my 30s. I really regret that I wasted the entire decade of my 20s trying to fix my parents problems and issues.

I literally spent thousands of dollars, close to all my extra time, and just about all my energy on them.

It did no good.

I finally got so tired and worn out, and used and abused, that I had to cut the chord. Looking back, I wish I would have done this when I was still footloose and fancy free.

There were so many things I wanted to do in college, like travel abroad, that I didn't do because even in college, while taking out loans for school and supporting myself, I was spending money and time on my mother. And after college, I wanted to accomplish my life goals, and even though I landed a good job and had the money, I spent it on other people, not myself.

That was a hard lesson to learn. And it didn't fix anything. It was a complete waste.

So, if you're still young, tread cautiously. You don't want to waste your life. Then again, I know how hard it can be to turn your back, especially on a parent. There's no easy solution.

What did it for me was when my family started committing crimes against me, actual crimes where they broke laws. That was the end for me. I cut them off.
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#87 of 108 Old 07-17-2008, 08:48 PM
 
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When I was younger I thought I would never be as bad of a mother as my mom. I was great with my son when it was just the 2 of us, but I'm finding it difficult to be a great mom to my dsd. She got a raw deal, and she has so many psychological problems that I find we can bring out the worst in each other at times, and it shows me I'm not completely healed myself. I am often furious with her late mother and the other relatives for damaging her emotionally, and even though I know it isn't her fault, I get angry at her behavior a lot. Then I get angry at myself for not being more patient.

I don't know if it's possible for all of us to ever get over it completely. I worry all the time that there's nothing I can do to help her and I'm only making things worse for both of us.
Yes, when I was younger I thought I would be a better mother than I am now, too. But my past affects me, for better and for worse. However, I knwo I don't have to be a perfect mother, and one huge thing that I can do that my mother never did is feel sorry and APOLOGIZE (what a concept!-- sorry, still a little bitter ) try to make it up to my child in strengthening our relationship, and try to improve going forward.

Your dsd doesn't need a perfect stepmom, she just needs someone to be there. When you adopt a child in any way, you can't necessarily turn their life around. They may still act out, have problems, perform poorly in school, be unsuccessful in life due to their issues. But you can give them a relationship they didn't have before, and someone who will be there for them and not abandon/betray them again. And that alone is just a really big deal.

Yeah, I may only ever adopt one child-- I'm sure it's really really hard-- but I just feel really called to it. I'm going to wait until the children we have now are older, though, in order to have as much parenting experience (and time to heal myself!) as possible.

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#88 of 108 Old 07-17-2008, 10:04 PM
 
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I know what you mean. Exactly.

How old are you?
46, and too old and chronically ill to have a special needs kid, I'm afraid.

Some days I feel like I do well, other days I think I crashed and burned. The scariest part is that I always hear that once they've passed age 3 or 4, psychologically everything has been ingrained. The things she witnessed before that age scare the crap out of me, and the ideas she has are just bizarre. If I tell her an idea is not exactly right, she just digs in more, but if I ignore, she goes on thinking it's factual. What do you do? Either choice is wrong.

I can't tell her her mom/grandma/aunts were batsh*t crazy and everything she believes about relationships and the way the world works is wrong, but unfortunately it kind of is.

And how many times do I react badly because of what my mom taught me?

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#89 of 108 Old 07-17-2008, 10:07 PM
 
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Do any of you who were abandoned by parents as children feel that the abandonment caused you to make a mistake when selecting a spouse?

I do.

I think now, looking back, that I didn't know what real love was, or what respect was, or what care and nurture was.

I didn't date much, and I put up with a lackluster coutship with a boyfriend who eventually turned into very insensitive fiance, who later turned into my very incompatible husband.

I married too young, didn't date enough beforehand, and didn't have any real life experience with a caring, functional, fun, loving, warm, sensitive, compatible, and nurturing person.

I think I just went for the first guy who showed interest in me AND who met some of my very sparse criteria (intelligent, relatively clean cut, and seemed to have a promising future).

I see so many signs looking back that he wasn't really in tune with me, didn't share my life goals or dreams, and was very incompatible.

I have a terrible marriage (not as terrible as my childhood) but I think my childhood played a role in how made decisions that go me to this point. Ugh. My standards were just way too low because I never was really loved or cared for.

I've been married a long time to someone who doesn't really care and who I am not compatible with. There's not a lot of love.

I did, a number of years ago, meet another man who I had so much in common with, and I had tremendous respect for him, and we just connected...shared ideas, could finish each others sentences. It was all very innocent, and not sexual or romantic at all (I'm too much a goody goody, darn it, for that) but I think if I hadn't been married, that person might have been my soul mate. There was mutual attraction, but neither of us persued it.

I regret that I settled too soon and too easily for marriage. I do have the blessing of my child, however, for which I have no regret.
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#90 of 108 Old 07-17-2008, 10:12 PM
 
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46, and too old and chronically ill to have a special needs kid, I'm afraid.

Some days I feel like I do well, other days I think I crashed and burned. The scariest part is that I always hear that once they've passed age 3 or 4, psychologically everything has been ingrained. The things she witnessed before that age scare the crap out of me, and the ideas she has are just bizarre. If I tell her an idea is not exactly right, she just digs in more, but if I ignore, she goes on thinking it's factual. What do you do? Either choice is wrong.

I can't tell her her mom/grandma/aunts were batsh*t crazy and everything she believes about relationships and the way the world works is wrong, but unfortunately it kind of is.

And how many times do I react badly because of what my mom taught me?


Ok, I think I mixed you up with someone else who said they were in their early 20s. I was envying their time that they still had to fix things in life. Sometimes I feel like I've really wasted my life always trying to do everything for everyone else.

I know what you are saying.

Do you have a special needs child yourself or are you referring to your mother, and her childhood?

I have a special needs child, and it is draining and sometimes (often) overwhelming. It gets me down when experts and doctors ask about my "support system" and how much help I have with my special needs child from my family. They always ask about grandparents and it makes me so sad and depressed.

So, I struggle with meeting the needs of my special needs child, and trying to remove the guilt for finally cutting off my mother. It is tough.

Therapy helps. A little. There is still a huge emotional toll.

As far as reacting badly due to what you were taught by your mom... Again, I know what you are saying. I have had to unlearn so many things. Like other said, though, I knew from an early age, about 5 or 6, that my mom was neglectful, a bad mother, not a role model, and not to be trusted or counted on. That helped me to never repeat what she did or act like her long before I had a baby. Thank God! But it is a hard cycle to break. My siblings have not been able to do that from what I can tell. And like I said, I'm very emotional and hurt still and not able to fully heal.
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