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why can't i just let go of my childhood

(8 Posts)
spidermanspiderman Mon 05-Nov-12 07:07:28

I'm pregnant and always find that my hormones seem to bring everything up again. Also my brother, who has nothing whatsoever to do with me and has cut me out of his life completely, has just got engaged.

Basically my df died when I was 7, after 5 years of fighting against a terminal illness. My df wasn't really around a lot due to this and I wasn't able to visit him really. My dm couldn't cope and was emotionally abusive to me throughout this time and in particular after my df's passing away.

Approximately 3 years later my dm met someone else got married and I was sent to boarding school. Despite the fact that I was very ill myself at the time and due to recurrent urine infections would often have accidents on a night. My dm couldn't cope with this either as I was being treated in same hospital where df passed away at the time and also would be angry at me for having an accident.

Anyway, my dm gradually improved in her behaviour towards me however my new step father now picked up from where she left off with the continuous emotional abuse. Every holiday when he was home I spent walking on eggshells. My dm was always saying things to me like 'i don't know why he does it to you' or 'he doesn't like his job at the moment, he can't help it' and also 'but who else would take on a woman with two children'.

My dm and I have spent a lot of time resolving everything and she acknowledges her role in it all. To be fair she has taken a lot of abuse and anger from me and has made a great effort to get our relationship to where it is now.

My step father however has never discussed anything with me and is still occasionally is verbally abusive to me (apparently I can't take a joke and am emotional). Though he always says to my dm afterwards that he doesn't know why he always snaps when it comes to me and behaves like that. He doesn't know what I do

AttilaTheMeerkat Mon 05-Nov-12 07:24:08

re your comment:-
"My dm and I have spent a lot of time resolving everything and she acknowledges her role in it all. To be fair she has taken a lot of abuse and anger from me and has made a great effort to get our relationship to where it is now".

Your inadequate mother does not deserve you at all as her daughter; she has spent an awful lot of years being cruel and not coping. BTW you did not make your mother this way, her birth family did that damage to her and she has continued in that abusive vein. She has chosen not to properly address why she has acted as she has.

Has she really done this re your 1st paragraph, has she really been sincere in her acknowledgement of emotional cruelty or would you like to think she has taken some actual responsibility for her actions here?. The fact that she is still with her H, your stepfather speaks volumes and married someone just like her really. She is now his willing and weak enabler and bystander and she gets something out of the relationship she has with your stepfather. Her excuses re him are just that, excuses. His own excuses and justifications to his wife are very weak.

Pregnancy as well brings up an awful lot of stuff that you may have thought long buried particularly when it comes to emotionally unhealthy dysfunctional parents like your mother and stepfather. Your childhood is an inherent part of you, you learnt an awful lot of damaging stuff from your mother when growing up and she went on to herself choose a man who is emotionally abusive towards you. She has failed and still fails to protect you fully from him; this is the sort of stuff emotionally unhealthy toxic parents do.

I would suggest you read "Toxic Parents" written by Susan Forward.

If you have never had counselling re the relationship with your mother and stepfather I would suggest you do so. BACP are good and do not charge the earth. At the very least you need to reassess yor boundaries with regards to these people. They won't change but you can certainly change how you react to them.

Is your brother older than you, does he have any communications at all with his mother and stepfather?. How long has it been since he ceased contact?.

Where do you see the relationship with your mother and stepfather going with regards to your child?. That requires a lot of thought.

spidermanspiderman Mon 05-Nov-12 11:10:51

Sorry have managed to.post twice. My brother is younger than me. Y three years. He didn't suffer from the emotional abuse from dm. He was very much the golden child who made her laugh where as I was greiving and ill so needy.

He did suffer from emotional abuse from my step father and we did have some form of friendship / alliance throughout much of this time. He remained friendly with me when I went off the rails (between the age of 17 to 21) and for some time after this. However as he has got older he has become more sexist and basically started ignoring me for no reason. He also has formed a relationship with our step father and on occasion they have joined forces in their abuse. I just ignored his behaviour and thought he would come back to being my friend eventually.

I have two dcs already who he has ignored. My dm buys presents for them for Christmas from him. All birthdays are ignored. I am aware that he resents the loss of attention as my dm is very focused on my dcs.

I think for him I am a reminder of what life was like.

The news of his engagement hurt because of his cutting me and my children out his life. I am the only one with dcs so far.

Other thing that always hurts is the family holiday every year! There is a family holiday organised by my dm and.step father every year for my brother and my dear half sister and brother (both of whom are lovely and by no means had it easy themselves). I am never invited because I have children! Just know that the next thing will be my brothers fiance going on holiday with them.

At the moment both my dm and step father are great with the dcs but they are the only grandchildren and I live approximately 400 miles from them!

AttilaTheMeerkat Mon 05-Nov-12 11:20:39

Honestly spider I would have no compunction about cutting them all off from your life as of now. These people bring nothing but anguish to your own life.

Your brother grew up with your emotionally abusive stepdad and your mother further became a willing weak enabler to her H. With such a poor role model for a stepfather it is not altogether surprising that he himself has become emotionally abusive; he learnt such lessons from his stepdad.

Re the present buying for the DC does your mother pretend that these gifts are from your brother?.

Toxic parents like these two more often than not make for becoming toxic grandparents. I would be very wary indeed of letting these two readily see your children because they could well start on them given the opportunity or get back at you by manipulating them. One generation i.e your brother and yourself have been profoundly affected by them, do not let a second i.e your children be the next generation in line to similarly suffer.

spidermanspiderman Mon 05-Nov-12 12:13:00

My brother gives my dm the money for the presents.

Thank you so much for your replies. I had never realised that my brother was following in my step fathers footsteps until you said.

Feel I have been everyone's victim since.forever and know that in life now I constantly want approval. Luckily my dh is fab (most of the time) and is very good at giving me praise and giving me that little extra that I need. I do however think he sometimes gets punished because of everything. He had to propose to me four times and I really pushed him to make sure he loved me. However he has always been constant - even when we argue (and we can have some really big arguements) I know he will be there for me. He doesn't really get the whole thing really but then again his family are a whole different problem altogether!

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Mon 05-Nov-12 12:19:09

You have your own lovely family, and another little one on the way. In all honesty I think you are safer concentrating on them and your own 'circle of love'. Very pleased DH is fab smile.

It sounds like your mother is trying to make amends for how she treated you by favouring your DCs. Going by past events perhaps this will end when /if your brother and his fiancee have children.

You seem to get on better with your half brother and sister than with your own brother, how sad their father never bonded with you. Almost like big cats when the new mate attacks the previous mate's cubs. It is a shame your brother as an adult now sides with your stepfather but that's his decision. Have you met his fiancee, I hope she's nice and everyone stays on civil terms but that might be the best you can hope for.

Focus on your family. As Attila remarks, pregnancy brings up a lot of half buried feelings. I doubt you would use 'golden child vs scapegoat' with your own children. Don't waste time trying to fathom them out, you really deserve better but for now, don't let them stress you.

spidermanspiderman Mon 05-Nov-12 13:05:57

For the most part I'm fine with everything and my dm really does try to make up for everything. I really do get on better with my half brother and sister. Think hormones and feeling that I am being excluded from yet another thing is making me feel like this again.

I have never met my brothers fiance and probably won't unless I'm invited to the wedding. He has cut me out of his life completely.

Feel cut out of the family quite a lot too. My dm tries to make up for things by taking the dcs and myself on holiday on her own etc. But it never takes away the feeling of rejection.

amillionyears Mon 05-Nov-12 18:13:45

Have you googled "how to deal with feelings of rejection".
It may help you to understand things a bit better.
Which may in turn help to lessen your emotional pain a little.
Sometimes things in life are not personal to you. In other words, if you had another full sister, who knows how she would have been treated.
hth

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