You have broken my heart;
you have cut me to the bone;
you have stabbed me in the back;
you have endangered my children;
you have stolen from me;
you have threatened to kill me and it seems every time we talk you spew out nothing but lies.
I failed you. As the person who brought you into this world, it was my convoluted job to make you appropriate for society.
If you had been an only child, would it have been different? If you had been an only child, would I have given you more leeway so I did not sacrifice your siblings humiliation, safety and discontent?
We moved for you. It was the area, the neighborhood, the school, the doctors. I did everything and gave all in hope that the problem wasn’t really you.
Doctors, therapists, counselors, hospitals; things a mother should never have to say about her child, I said.
In the end, I failed you.
For many years, I was a mighty warrior set out to ensure your health and happiness, but you broke my spirit and I gave up. I want so badly to let you in, but the price is so high and I am emotionally bankrupt.
You deserved a stronger mother, one who could stay in the fight, one who could be more understanding, one who could battle for more than 19 years. I am so sorry you ended up with me, who tried to make you fit in a cookie-cutter mold. I still have no clue what kind of mom could have helped you.
It wasn’t me.
I battled uphill to mend my broken life while trying to protect yours. The spiraling, all-consuming, soul-sucking, constantly being kicked and punched, that was all beyond me.
I’m sorry I am so broken and weak that I can’t afford to be hurt again. Everyone in your world has disconnected over the years in the simple and often subconscious act of self-preservation. But in everyone’s life, there should be at least one constant, one person you know will always be there. You don’t even have that.
I hurt you.
I insulted you.
I embarrassed you.
I punished you.
I hospitalized you.
I let you down.
I lied to you.
I threatened you.
I had you arrested.
I closed my door to you.
I laughed at you.
I walked away….
I didn’t ever deserve you, and you certainly didn’t deserve me.
November 14, 2010 at 8:20 pm
I’m sitting here in a giant puddle of snot and tears.
I’m living this story. Ten years behind you (my son is 8), but the same awful ride, a broken kid born to broken parents, and all of us working together to fuck up the rest of our kids.
At the best of times, it’s unbearably difficult. When I am most OK, I know that a different (better, stronger, braver) mother wouldn’t have fixed Carter. The cups I’ve thrown, the times my throat has been hoarse from screaming, those are just the fallout of mental illness in the family. I can’t excuse myself for some of the things I’ve said and done, but some days, I know that this is just a nightmare. No one acts the way they hope they will in the midst of a personal, ever-present hell.
I fear 14 (when my son can refuse meds), and 18 (when he can refuse everything). On the other hand, you know. When he’s 18, I get to refuse things too, maybe.
Peace and love to you. If only there was more I could offer.
November 15, 2010 at 12:10 am
Wow, I’m so sorry.
November 15, 2010 at 10:40 am
We don’t always have the answers and we don’t always do our best. Sometimes it’s just because we don’t know what the “best” is and sometimes it’s because we’ve thrown up our hands and decided to retreat because it is so. damn. hard.
Motherhood is a beautiful and terrifying thing.
We do what we can with the resources we have, which includes our own minds.
Sometimes we could have done more, but sometimes we did all that we could and even some stuff we didn’t think we had in us.
We can’t ever know if we had done something differently, whether the circumstances would have changed, or if the outcome would have been different.
Living in guilt does nobody any good, we just have to learn from our biggest mistakes, try to forgive ourselves and move forward with knowledge that we didn’t have before.
You’re brave for sharing this, and I commend you.
Holly B says:
November 15, 2010 at 3:40 pm
I’m just speechless, crying and speechless.
November 15, 2010 at 5:12 pm
I am so sorry. Every child is different. There wasn’t even google when my journey started, and so much stigma against mental illness. They will never get it right because they don’t understand. I tried my best, followed ever step and did what I could, but by the time he was 19 I had nothing left, I still hope he will grow but I can’t make him..