I have become a ‘selfish bitch’

Okay, let me explain what I mean.

After years of living in an emotionally abusive home, being told what to do and what to eat, and who to talk to etc etc I am finally making a stand and realizing that I have more options than my parents made me realize.

Back then I never had the option of saying NO. And for a long time after I left I never used the word no because that sense of obligation was so ingrained in me that I never considered it an option. Until all of these obligations started weighing on me like a ton of bricks. It gets hard to breathe. Each day is a struggle. You sit waiting for the next request to come up and drag yourself to wherever you need to be.

It is an exhausting way to live. It is not a life, it is an existence.

I waited many years for this ‘storm’ to pass. There I was like a fucking idiot standing in the rain waiting for it to stop when all I had to do was go inside. But when you are a victim of abuse you are so accustomed to not having a choice, that long after you break free from your abuser, the habits live on.

Whether it is in my mind, or just the way it is, I have become somewhat of a selfish bitch. I make time for my immediately family (my husband and child) before I schedule anything with anyone else. And if any social engagement does not suit my schedule I just decline.

I am an introvert of sorts. I love being around people but I equally love being at home in my own space. I do not like spending time with people who do not add value to my life or people who disrespect me.

Many will claim that my ‘issues’ are standing in the way of me having a larger group of friends and family but I disagree. It is all about quality over quantity is it not? So why am I branded as this selfish bitch for wanting to make the most of my time with the people I prefer?

You know what it is? Social obligation. Society hands us this set of ever changing rules that everyone just blindly follows.

You MUST be close to your family.

You MUST be seen out every weekend surrounded by a group of people.

You MUST do everything you can for anyone that asks.

I call bullshit.

I now handle my life the same way I handled my wedding guest list: If I haven’t seen or heard from you in the last 6 months AT LEAST then you’re not welcome. Life passes us by so quickly. I blinked and suddenly it’s almost Christmas. I can’t make up for the lost years of my childhood but I can work towards creating a better present for myself and a better future for my child by living for myself and not others.

I have a few close friends that I consider my people and for them I always have time, a shoulder, a cupcake, a glass of wine. But I don’t interact with them out of a sense of obligation. I interact with them because they add value to my life and they are invested in me as a person.

So no, I won’t be making it to your house next week, I’m just a little busy taking care of me.

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Your mother is a what?! Part One

Hi. My name is blah blah and my mother is a covert narcissist. Say what now?

This is a conversation that every single child (adult or not) dreads to have with anyone who is not aware of the narcissistic parent. And just my luck, I happen to have a complete set.

My early years were confusing to say the least, always wondering what I did to provoke such an intense level of anger from my mother. Strongly believing that if only I was pretty enough and skinny enough and smart enough, then she would love me. She was clearly capable of love because she doted on my younger brother. (Actually this is a lie, the love shown towards my brother was just part of the tools in her arsenal, but at age 10 I didn’t know this)

For the longest time I thought I was adopted. Looking through photo albums and discreetly questioning family members I discovered the sad news that yes, I am biologically linked to this woman. So scratch the escape and look for my ‘real’ parents plan. Ask me about my childhood and I clam up. I’m not interested in reliving the worst part of my life. I don’t want to think about the sadness and the isolation and the suicide. No let’s not mention the suicide. Never attempted but always contemplated.

I don’t understand that little rhyme we were taught as kids: Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.

Words hurt. They fucking hurt to the core.

Words that will stay with me forever: Why is your nose so flat? You will never find a husband being this fat. Why are your lips so big, can’t you keep them in?

These words were not thrown at me by school yard bullies. These words and many other were gifted to me by Mother Dearest herself. She only told me she loved me on birthday cards. Happy Birthday. Love M (for mom) She never showed any physical affection unless we had company over (Keeping up appearances are crucial) She made me beg for everything. Everything was a huge sacrifice. Doing the family laundry was a sacrifice. Making us food was a sacrifice. Buying said food was a sacrifice. Paying for my education was a sacrifice. Basically my entire existence “drained” her financially and I was a burden.

If you ever have the honour of meeting Mother you will love her. You really will. She draws people in and most people think I’m insane or have a vendetta against her because she’s so friendly and lovable and kind hearted (insert eye roll here)

Satan and I have not had contact since 2008. And while it hasn’t been easy, I am experiencing a better quality of life since she is no longer part of it. To the person blessed with a wonderful NORMAL mother that is reading this with confusion,shock and horror, I do apologise but this story needs to be told for the many silent sufferers.

Society is very willing to accept the dead beat dad with ‘oh he is such a pig’ or ‘don’t worry you are better off without him’, but mothers are sacred. Anyone who decides to disown their mother is met with ‘but what did she do?’ or ‘Surely it couldn’t have been that bad?’ or ‘Where is your spreadsheet proving that she did these things, she is your mother, you can’t do this’

This blog is about my life, and a huge chunk of what shaped my identity as a person is growing up with a narcissistic mother. If this offends or confuses you…tough shits. This was my reality for 21 years. 21 long, miserable lonely years.

The story of MD (Mother Dearest) cannot be told in one blog post. I am not sure how many posts it will take but keep your eyes peeled for the next one. You might just learn something.

While you are waiting do a bit of reading:

Books:

narc2

 

 

Spring

So I started this blog with not much direction. I was planning on using it as an online diary, a virtual abyss for me to just dump all my thoughts into the universe but life got the best of me and somehow I ended up in the abyss instead of my thoughts.

It is October now, and supposedly spring and yet the scarf around my neck and my thick socks beg to differ. But I am feeling a very strong spring vibe in my life right now. I started a new job on the 12th of September and things are going so well to the point that everyone that sees me asks what I have been doing differently.

Let me rewind a little bit. I was in a dead end job for 8 years (insert collective gasp here) No I was not lazy, I was anything but. Scared, anxious, not qualified enough for certain jobs but definitely not lazy. It is hard to find someone willing to give you a chance these days. Even more so to find an employer that is going accommodate the ‘disadvantages’ that come with hiring a mother.  I don’t understand the discrimination though. Mothers are responsible. Yes we drop everything when our children are ill but we never pitch up to work hungover and highly ‘medicated’. We are multi taskers and very reliable as well as self motivated. Employers need to open their minds to the benefits of hiring mothers.

So anyway, back to the story I started feeling depressed. I would constantly ask my closest friends if they saw the warning signs of depression. All of them said no. Obviously this was about more than just a shitty job. I do not have a supportive family, I have had to fight for almost every single thing in my life, and the daily grind at a job that was draining my soul was just escalating everything.

I was about to throw in the towel when I saw a vacancy being advertised in the most extraordinary fashion. They wanted someone competent, but it wasn’t crucial for the person to have the qualification or the experience.  SAY WHAAAAAT NOW? They were looking for someone with a great attitude and to slot into their team. I took the chance. What did I have to lose right?

So after 18mnths of job hunting I scored my second interview out of the hundreds of emails I had sent out.

Nervous is an understatement.

And as I’ve said…I GOT THE JOB!!!!

This job has truly changed my life. It has given me back my sense of self worth, it has eliminated so much stress, I am once again positive about my future and my capabilities.

Depression is a real thing. And it doesn’t always have to be a chemical imbalance and it cannot always be fixed with medication. Sometimes the only way you can dig yourself out of the pit is to make a change or cut a toxic person out of your life. This is sometimes easier said than done, but when you eventually make it to the top of that hill it is worth it.

This is obviously not the whole story, after all this is a blog post and not a short documentary hahahah, but stay tuned to my blog and you will uncover this story layer by layer. I hope whoever reads this sees that you can overcome that burden in your life. Even if you only take one step at a time, take the first step.

 

Dear Dummy

DEAR DUMMY, I have a confession to make. Pre-mom me never liked you. Well you have quite the reputation and not such a good relationship with the teeth of certain kids, so don’t hate me. I bought a breast pump set and two of you came with, so I didn’t really choose to buy you. And yet I packed one of you into the hospital bag, first time mom jitters I guess. When the nurse at the hospital discovered you she was in such shock and disgust, I actually thought she had discovered drugs in my bag. Oh well.

At 6 weeks I introduced you to Lia in the hope you could soothe her. So much crying, what is up with the crying. Lia didn’t like you at all and screamed even louder. So back into the cupboard you went. At the tender age of 3months I had to send my precious angel to school, on the list of things to provide in her bag was guess what…a dummy. I explained that she wasn’t interested but they thought they knew better. After the longest 8hrs at work in my life I rushed to fetch Lia and discovered her peacefully sleeping with you in her mouth. You were her comfort when I wasn’t there. I didn’t know whether to cry or be grateful.

Lia turns 4 at the end of this month and for the past two years you have been her dirty little secret. She doesn’t use you in public and makes no mention of you when outside the house (sorry). She has picked up on the fact that society is not happy with kids her age having a dummy and has adapted accordingly, only using you for bedtime.
So many childless people make comments like ‘oh is she still on the dummy? So and so’s kid left the dummy at age 2 or 3 blah blah (insert eye roll here) Depending on who it is I react with a variety of responses like ‘yeah well so and so’s kid has a security blanket so shut up’ or ‘Lia is my kid and I do what suits me’.
Or the ‘perfect parents’, ‘oh my child never used a dummy, do you know how bad it is for their teeth, and you’re going to struggle SO much getting her off it’ (insert yet another eye roll) uhm lady, I haven’t berated you for breastfeeding past age 4, and I can see your 6yr old sucks his thumb so back off and leave me alone will you. Stay in your lane dumbass.

The truth is I changed my mind about you when I saw how you calmed my child. Although sometimes I wish you were never invented, like when Lia was 8mnths and waking me up because she was not capable of finding you on her own in the dark at 3am. Then I just went out and bought 6 of you and sprinkled you over the cot like Motherhood calming glitter.

Last night Lia went to bed without you…we couldn’t find you (we weren’t motivated enough to find you, quite frankly we are sick of you) After much tossing and turning she finally fell asleep and in the morning we praised her so much for being a big girl. We had given Lia the cut off of her birthday, a day when she would hand you over to a baby and let go of her babyhood. But we somehow speeded up the process.

I feel kinda sad, I feel like I’ve lost my baby. But I have also waited for this day. Thank you. Thank you for soothing my child. Thank you for giving me ten minutes of peace at times, dummy in = silence. hahaha

Goodbye dummy. The other dummy moms feel exactly the same (sorry again) but you make a difference in the lives of kids and that is all that matters. Not the opinions of other people.