I went out with one of my girlfriends tonight and we got into a deep discussion.
I’m 35, and I’ve been keeping inside what I really think forever.
I don’t respect any choices my mother made. Phew… that was really hard to say.
This is me, well a part of my story at least:
- I am 35.
- I am a professional translator.
- I have a bachelor’s degree.
- I make at least 3 times more than any woman my age. (closer to 4 times)
- I was married 7 years to a well-grounded intelligent and caring man. We are very close still.
- I have one child, he is 7. His reviews from school say he has an above average intelligence and is very sensitive.
This is my story.
My mother had me at 18. I’m the result of a one night stand. I met my biological father once, I was 15. The night we met, he specified he didn’t want any other contact from me.
My mother has been on welfare most of her life. With no diploma, her logic was that working cost her more than holding on to a job. You know, working at the bank meant she had to pay for a babysitter and at the end of the week, she had more money in her pockets if she stayed on welfare. So that’s what she did. Her job was to raise me. It was the 70s. So her friends came over often. She said she stopped smoking hashish and marijuana when she realised, when I was 4 or 5, that I was trying to make them laugh. You know how people smoking weed laugh for the silliest stuff. A child realizes that pretty quickly.
She said also said that as a child, I was TOO promiscuous. That as soon as a man came home, I would sit on his lap and I would try to have his attention. But she eventually found a man, well call him D, who stayed longer and they eventually got married. They went on to have two kids together, 2 boys, and he also adopted me legally. I bare his name today.
D is the kind of man who’s really insecure. He’s very small, like 5’5’’, he’s a redhead and laughs nervously. I might be wrong, but I think most small men fell somehow insecure or feel they have more to prove than big guys at least.
When I was 12, their relationship started going south and my mom started having an affair with one of her childhood friend. I don’t recall every details, but one night my mom went out with her girlfriends, I had a friend home, and we tried to put make up on and do our hair. As I said, some details are missing. But that night D lost control and ended up betting me up. Not just a spanking. I’m talking a man’s punches and kicks. My friend obviously panicked and left! She never came home after that.
That night, I got my bike and ended up running away to my grandma’s house in another city. When I finally got there, my whole family had heard than I “ran away”, so my aunt and my grandmother were really worried and expecting me big time. My mother well, she was on the phone, yelling at me, telling me I was ruining her night. My aunt had to specify that I was covered in bruises for her to calm down.
We are over 20 years later, and I know you all expect me to be mad at D for beating me up, but I will tell you this… You can only push a person so far before they reach their breaking point. And there is ALWAYS a breaking point.
(I am not in any way excusing his behavior, its was more than wrong, but I’m saying that, if the wrong buttons are pressed too often and for too long, we ALL have the ability to loose it completely once in our life)
Next, my mom and D divorced, we moved away and my mom had a few affairs, even tried to talk about it in another language in front of me, but I understood. At his time, my mom was still on welfare but working under the table so she could still get her welfare check. She met a man, This man, we’ll call him M is one of the best human being I have EVER met! (He has evil spawn but that’s another story.)
When it got serious, he told my mom he was kinda rich, and actually owned the company he worked for. He was a lot richer than she imagined.
They stayed together for 20 years. During their time together, he paid for classes she wanted to attend and he opened a small store for her, and paid for everything, even when the store went “bankrupt”. He actually took care of the debt. At some point, when I was 15 or 16, his kids asked him to go back to his ex-wife. Being the great man he is, he did it. He tried.Which says a lot about him.
For a few months, my mom, broken-hearted, got drunk every single night and of course, was back on welfare. Money got so tight; she made ME call the bank to say she would skip her car payments. During this time, she was calling me her “spouse”and gave me the spousal responsibilities of getting my brothers from school and preparing dinner.
Since she had been on welfare, I started paying for my school supplies from the money I made babysitting and never once had any financial help from my mother from that point on. At 16, I started working minimum wage at McDonalds and kept attending college fulltime. My mom refused to let me sleep late during the weekend. Not in her house. I was the only one working… My mom was borrowing money from me.
Like a lot of broken-hearted girls, she started sleeping with an old friend (the same one she cheated on her 1rst husband with)… and oh surprise… she got pregnant. No job, no money, no relationship. She got an abortion. And a few weeks later, lucky her, M called her back and they began dating again. I made his life miserable. Being a teenager, I only saw that he made my mom sad. About 5-7 years later they even got married. M opened a company under my mother’s name and trained her. She started driving trucks with him and made a fortune doing so. He bought 2 houses for her during this time. He got her anything she ever wanted.
But what I remember from those years, in the early years, is hearing them have LOUD sex. I mean we kids in the basement and still hearing them. And for the rest of the relationship, hearing my mother constantly having fights with him. Not physical. But screaming matches. Nothing he did was ever good enough.
I had my 1rst “serious” relationship at 19, he was a baseball player. We got engaged and got our own place. They say we learn from example… Well I was always screaming… he was never good enough.
He rightfully dumped me. I was a tyrant! I was looking for drama.
I gained 100lbs. I was broken-hearted.
Since I had to find another apartment. My mother and M offered the one above them… the one M’s kids used for years, and my brothers for many other years. Not one of them ever paid rent.
But I did.
Rent was 400$ a month. I was working AND attending university. The only out of 5 kids still going to school, and also the only one who ever paid rent. It was the 1rst house M bought for them. When they tried selling the house to get another one in the country, my mother forged documents and my signature and said I was paying more in order to get a better offer on the house (law here is you can only increase the rent rate’s to a certain amount, I think it was 10% or so back then). When I confronted here (100$ increase for a student working part-time is A LOT) she got caught, she paid cash the extra 100$ a month to my new owners because she didn’t want M to know she forged my signature.
I later got married and had a child. We visited my mom and M often in the country, M and my husband got along great. But EVERY SINGLE visit, would be a time for my mother to take her dirty laundry out. EVERY SINGLE time! My husband and I would be caught in the middle of an argument, with M caving in and telling my mother what she wanted to hear. My mother even tried telling everything my own husband was doing wrong, and got upset that I was taking his side… but it was the logical side.
We kinda stopped visiting. Arguing that it was too far, instead of being honest and saying we felt uncomfortable being in the middle of every arguments.
I got so heavy, that I some point, one of my brother and I told M to leave my mother. We said “you deserve to be happy, you are an amazing man, stop taking that bullshit day after day! You deserve more”
We told this man to run away from our own mother… we called her the dictator behind her back.
One day, he did it. She actually told him she was contemplating divorce, which I think (I can be wrong but this is what I’m feeling) was just a way to manipulate him into doing what she wanted, but instead, he agreed.
During that time, unfortunately, my husband and I also separated. It was extremely hard emotionally, but every single other details was taken care of without any argument. We were very civilized. I never even asked for alimony. Nothing nada zilch.
Well my mother, the one with no job experience, no schooling, with a background of welfare who only got a great life because of her husband, tried to get all of M’s retirement saving, RRSPs in Canada, 401k in the US…. not just half of the company he created for her, and half of what they got together. Noooo… EVERYTHING he ever made in all his life even before meeting her, she tried to get.
Of course she did not get it. But she got a lot of money. So much money that at 56 she retired, traveling the world on the money she “made” by selling “her” company.
But she has been single ever since.
But tonight, because of her, I blew a gasket.
My mother got wind that I am seeing someone. Since my divorce, 6 years ago. I have had 2 “official’ boyfriends and a few other encounters that don’t count ;). Every “official’ relationship lasted. One for 1.5 year and the other 2 years. Since I felt I had introduced the first official boyfriend to my son, I took me over a year to introduce the second one. And the reason I left the second one, who I was madly in love with, is because I found drugs in one of his bags. I left him because I do not want someone who sells or uses drugs in my son’s life. I can honestly say that if I had not been a mother, I would have stayed with him.
So I said that tonight, I blew a gasket. I did so, because my mother called me unstable when she learned I was sleeping with, as she calls it, yet another man, a man who is not in any way in my life other than in my bed, and who has and never will see my son. I never even spoke on the phone with him in from of my son.
She often told me that at my age, she already had 3 kids. She told me I work too much. That my child is suffering from this. She told me I focus too much on money.
She made me feel like being a working mother is wrong! She made me feel like not being like her is wrong. She made me feel like a slut for wanting to have company. But all my life all I ever wanted was to be the opposite of her… I wanted 1- to have a well paid career 2- to have an education 3-to be financially independent 4- have a strong stable life for my kids.
Call me old fashion, but I think we have to teach our kids how to save, and actually help them do so. we have to encourage them to get a good education so they can have a better life. We have to offer a caring stable life to our kids.
I always said my drive came from seeing my mother struggle. Now I realize I actually wanted the opposite of her life. And I’m proud of my accomplishments. I feel I have upgraded.
Mother-daughter relationships are hard….
How would you react to this situation? Have you ever been judge by people who, you feel, are way behind?