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What is / was your mother like?

What is / was your mother like?

What is / was your mother like?

Hi everyone,

I’d like to begin a discussion about ‘Mothers’ . To stimulate discussion I am downloading a cartoon depicting different types of Mothering. Maybe your childhood was ‘good enough’ rather than ‘Hell’. I guess, even though much of life in side the home was Hell (uncomfortable, scary, punishing …) , I still wouldn’t choose another life, because I am Me – I have survived a dysfunctional upbringing. The surviving and bringing good out of darkness has made me strong – strong enough to keep facing the truth about myself and others. My mum was: Worry Mum, Mad Mum, Crazy Mum, Guilt Mum … goodness, the list goes on. Sigh. I think, in a later post, I may talk about ‘Gone Mum’ : being rejected by mother is perhaps the most painful?
mothers-cartoon.png

I look forward to your responses.

Kind regards

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Author: Kate • Filed under: Mother Matters • Posted: May 17, 2008 8:43 am

Responses

  1. May 19, 2008 10:56 am

    Ellen says:

    My mum was Guilt Mum, Sick and Tired Mum and I suspect she was also depressed. She was a bully. She abused me physically and verbally. My experience was that I was a nuisance, unloved because unloveable and there to be a target for her constant grumbling and bad temper. I was starved emotionally. The eldest of three, I had the awesome responsibility from an early age of looking after my sisters, keeping them safe (when we went out to play) and setting them an example (part of the responsibility of being the eldest). I didn’t really understand what this meant, and as I didn’t have much of an example to follow it was difficult to provide one for them. My sisters are very bitter about the past and still view me as bossy. We have a very distant relationship which I would dearly like to improve but sadly there is too much resistance.

    I suffered at my mother’s hands until I was fifteen, when I became a committed christian. As a result of this new experience, my attitude changed and she softened somewhat. I had a new inner strength to cope with the situation. I am now an old lady (!) and my mother a much older lady! Over the years, and with much help, I have been able to forgive her. She lives independently, with a lot of support from me (mainly) and others. I want to do all I can to help her and bring a bit of joy to her life in these years of extreme old age. The grace of God is a wonderful thing! But in spite of the forgiveness and healing, I feel I will always be handicapped because some of the deep damage to my personality can never be undone.

  2. Hi Ellen,
    I appreciate your honesty as you review your relationship with your bullying mother. Would you say becoming a Christian was like finding ‘mother God’? You speak of inner strength and grace. It’s a strange word ‘grace’, isn’t it? There are lots of things I could say in response…
    God gave me grace (kind attitude?) in coping with the final years of my mother’s life and her mental illness. As I reflect on ‘grace’ in the past, I think some of my care was co-dependency, an ‘ought’. In the present, thankfully my mother is at peace now, ‘grace’ helps me … you used the word ‘soften’, yes, grace helps me soften the hard attitudes I could have toward others. Sometimes, though, it feels like walking a tight rope, because alongside Grace is Truth.
    I feel handicapped by my mother’s smothering rejection. Although I have let go of anger toward her, I’m not sure this is the same as forgiveness?
    Thank you, Ellen, for what you have shared.

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