Everything was fine
Until he clawed open her soul
Just to feel the sunshine
Note from 2/28/17
She took my childhood. Imprisoned me, controlled me, beat me, and diminished me to nothing.
Stomped my backbone from birth, shredded my voice, mocked my existence
Then tossed me away
Daddy picked up the pieces
And loved them …every sad fragment
But something was still broken
The first boy who was nice to me,
I settled in. I basked in that innocent childish love, let it wash my 17 years of aching tender wounds
Until he started tearing at those wounds with angry fists and kicks of rage.
And love was suddenly more familiar with bruises and breaks and bloody noses
So I just loved him harder like I had mother
And he beat me harder and harder – just like mother had
the harder I loved.
Daddy didn’t help because this was “such a good guy”.
The police didn’t help because they “knew my boyfriend’s big important daddy”.
Then he put a gun to my head and I begged mother for a place to hide where he couldn’t find me.
Mother refused to help me because she said I “must have liked it to stay so long with all the beatings”. She said, Call me in a year and maybe you can hide here.
I was desperate – scared literally for my life, not just another beating, – my life. So I went to my aunt.
And then mother was REALLY FURIOUSLY pissed off because I’d asked my aunt for refuge, who happily provided me a place to hide and start a new life and to help me till I got independent. I was 19.
But I pushed on, hoping once I made a better life for myself – away from the domestic violence of my boyfriend – and on my own, mother might be proud of me… And maybe even love me…?
I got my own job, my own apartment, I had no help from anyone. I was fiercely determined to earn mother’s love.
Working at a massive corporate law firm in downtown Cincinnati with over 500 attorneys. Several of the partners got to know me, believed I was far too intelligent to stay a legal secretary, and encouraged me to go to college and to consider law school. I was invigorated by the encouragement.
I decided for college one day and excitedly called mother to tell her so excited that she’d be proud I was going. Mother mocked, snidely laughed and told me I could never succeed in college and
I believed her.
I always believed her.
But my bosses seemed so sure I could. They seemed so impressed with my abilities and my intelligence. So I told my dad what the law partners were saying and daddy said I could live with him and go to school and get student loans… He’d do everything he could to help … and my best friend back home, George, was always saying how much he loved me.
So I did.
Even while self sufficient I begged for her love, but I moved forward in my life without it and just hoping… someday
And I did it.
I made honors in community college until I got a partial scholarship and loans to attend a university.
All on my own.
Narcissistic abuse is a dual edged sword. It will never admit … much less apologize.. for the damage. In fact, it denies and belittles, making you feel even worse, more vulnerable, more crazy, more abused.
More like a victim….. helpless and victimized from every edge….
The first boyfriend I ever had beat me senseless physically . He didn’t emotionally or mentally abuse me though…. Just random, irate, wild physical attacks. I was lucky to have survived a few of those vicious attacks, but still I’d choose that over narcissistic abuse like my mother, my ex, or my children.
Recently I got very reflective on that first boyfriend. And I texted him to just state my feelings. I wasn’t hoping for anything more than the chance to say how I felt about the abuse and a few things that happened concerning him after my dad passed. I truly expected him to actually deny it ever happened! That’s how distorted narcissistic abuse has made me…
But he just apologized. He didn’t deny. He didn’t belittle or minimize the abuse. He literally just apologized! He even went so far as to say ” I would pay the devil if I could take back how badly I beat you”.
He SAID that!!
And I’m just flabbergasted…. I’ve never had anyone hurt me deeply and actually demonstrate remorse or regret of any kind. It’s always been “I didn’t do that” or “sorry you think that’s what I did”. Never EVER just a straight out I’m so sorry for how I hurt you. I wish I hadn’t.
I’m amazed at what a difference just the acknowledgement of truth makes! Much less, the sincere apology. It’s astonishing actually!
It makes all the difference in the world.
Narcissistic abuse is hands down the most vile evil abuse there is.
I’d so much rather be beaten.
Listen to a narcissist react to a narcissistic injury. What’s the injury? Any path or description that is contrary to the narcissist’s desires or image. You will be able to swiftly see a narcissist’s agenda in how they STRONGLY REACT to your self-expression. Speak up for yourself; act as if you have THE RIGHT to […]
I know the weight of the world,
never getting anything right,
I know whippings and the snide rip of my flesh stinging with bewildering confusion for my crime,
I know the desperate longing to belong,
and the relentless ache to be loved.
I know hate without cause
and wondering why…
I am a rape survivor.
I know helpless.
I know disempowerment,
the emotionless vacancy in blank eyes,
I know the feel of odd objects thrust inside me
and the tearing of flesh from the inside
I know terror
and wondering why…
I am a domestic violence survivor.
I know caking makeup to hide black eyes,
I know the sting of broken noses, the bruising of ribs,
I know the bloody lips, chipped teeth, bald spots,
I know the cuts, scrapes… the not-so-delicate finger shaped bruises adorning my neck.
I know fear and the impossibility of walking on eggshells
and wondering why…
I am the daughter of a loving father.
I know unconditional love from a distance.
I know big southern breakfasts
and daddy’s that laugh til their whole belly jiggles
I know feeling my mistakes were forgiven
and the feeling of home.
I am a momma
I know singing lullabies with babies breath in my face
I know the peace of watching a child sleep in safety and contentment.
I know giggles and token rocks as priceless gems.
I know chasing away bad dreams
and mending little hearts
with sweet kisses and gooey cookies,
fairy dancing and pretty dresses.
I know tiny hands reaching confidently for mine
and feeling strong for the first time,
knowing I’d rather die than allow this child pain.
I am a targeted parent.
A cancer that grows stronger with every word or action.
I know helpless.
I know worthless.
I know empty.
I know hopeless.
I know how it feels to be vilified,
persecuted, falsely accused,
Without a voice, a prayer, or a single hope.
I am an erased momma.
I know of everything I know,
of this , I am no survivor.
I know parental alienation by narcissists
killed me in the end.
Killed by obliteration; insidious erasure of all that was my past, present, and future.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve been desperate to dissect and analyze every piece of me to try to determine what’s so fucking wrong with me and how I might fix whatever it is. I can’t even recall a time in my life from my earliest memory (which was around 3) til today when I wasn’t acutely aware that I’m different- and not necessarily a good different, but vastly different from my peers, my family, my friends, and co-workers.
Recently a friend of mine contacted me to tell me she’d stumbled across some study which she found that discovered a strong link between domestic violence and early- age stroke. She thought of me because she knew my history of domestic violence as well as my stroke at age 26. I googled this and discovered that link as well as research linking child abuse/neglect and early-age stroke.
I had an acute ischemic stroke at the age of 26. My mother (who knows all!) immediately dismissed the cause as a common side effect of taking birth control pills and smoking. I tended to believe that too (after all mother knows all, right?!) until after several doctors gathered my history it was deemed that my use of birth control pills was so random and scarce throughout my 26 years that they did not feel inclined to think that caused it, citing that typically stroke only occurs due to that in women who have taken contraceptive pills for many years without ceasing. I had only taken birth control for a sum total of 2.5 of my 26 years and that was scattered across a period of six years. My ex has told people it was caused from me “chain smoking”, which he apparently determined I was doing from two states away in addition to my full time job and not smoking at home around my infant. The doctors also determined my smoking probably hadn’t helped me not have a stroke at 26 but they did not deem that the cause.
Ultimately, in my humble opinion for lack of any definitive answers, the team of specialists blamed my 6 week pregnancy as the cause of my stroke. Although after 3 months in the hospital recovering, my obstetrician told me that in all the gazillion tests which had been run on me in my 3 month hospital stay, they never could pinpoint a single probable cause for me at 26, underweight, with typically frighteningly low blood pressure, and zero history of drug use, to have had this sudden stroke. It remained an elusive mystery to all the specialists.
That said, I feel it’s quite likely that it was from my history of child abuse and domestic violence which was pretty much non-stop my entire life. According to this article, For women, the consequences of domestic violence can last a lifetime,
Women who have fallen victim to domestic violence are 80 percent more likely to suffer a stroke, 70 percent more likely to have heart disease, 70 percent more likely to become heavy drinkers, and 60 percent more likely to become asthmatic than women who have not, according to a 2008 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
And another article, Childhood Neglect Linked With Stroke Risk says,
Children neglected before the age of 18 have a higher risk of suffering a stroke in adulthood, according to new research. Earlier research has found a link between childhood abuse and later mental illness. Neglect, or the lack of a warm and responsive caregiver, has also been shown to cause changes in the brain’s grey and white matter. Bullying, abuse and other exposure to violence are also known to accelerate biological aging in kids.
It’s uncanny that all this abuse that my perpetrators claim didn’t happen, would have made the possibility of me having a random extraordinarily rare with no obvious causes stroke much than an 80% chance. If domestic violence alone increases the odds by a whopping 80% and then childhood abuse adds even more to that risk factor, then there were clearly far more cumulative odds I would have an atypical random circumstantial stroke in my lifetime than that I would not.
I’m no scientist of course, but I would be willing to bet the farm that relationships with long term narcissistic abuse are, in themselves, a strong risk factor for things like stroke, chronic depression, alcohol abuse, severe low self-esteem, and debilitating identity disorders. …makes me want to go back to school to get a psychology degree just so I might do this research study myself!
Over my lifetime when I’ve doubted my very experiences, questioned my own memories, and struggled desperately to figure out what the fuck is WRONG with me and FIX IT ALREADY for fuck’s sake, I frequently cling to the one blessed moment of validation I received as a child. My mother had dragged me to a psychiatrist, Dr. Orndoff, when I was in the 7th grade because she was so SICK AND TIRED OF ME ACTING UP. I was mortified, already had terrible trust issues from being raised and abused by a pathological narcissist who hated me for existing, and had no clue that mother wasn’t right about me, nor a single clue that it was some pretty rough chronic abuse I was dealing with. I was scared to talk to this elderly (seemingly goofy and odd) man in this hot little upstairs office. I was wildly afraid (and positively certain) this man would scream at me and tell me what a fucked up horrible child I was because all I knew for certain in the 7th grade was that mother was never, ever wrong and entirely infallible while I couldn’t seem to get anything right no matter how desperately I wanted to please her.
I thank my lucky stars that this kind, gentle doctor was able to convince scared-out-of -my-mind ashamed-to-even-exist-13 year old me that it was safe for me to talk openly and freely. This would be my only moment of safety and validation from my first 17 years of life and the only hope I had that maybe I wasn’t just a horrible kid who didn’t deserve to exist and who brought all the abuse I received ONTO MYSELF for being me. After several weeks of talking and listening with this man, he had me take the MMPA and when the results came, he informed me that the lie-proof results indicated only 3 specific items of great note and/or concern:
1. I was exceedingly honest. He said that the lie detector built in to the test typically had some scale, even when the patient wasn’t lying but might change their mind or perspective slightly when a question was repeated and worded differently. He said that I scored a literal “0” in the lie-detecting factor and that he’d never seen that score before as most scored at least a 1 or 2.
(Yes, I was painfully honest and meticulous in my answers! I wanted to know what was wrong with me so he could help me fix it and maybe my mother could love me)
2. I scored no balance for the male/female traits we all carry. I was 100% feminine through and through with literally none of the typically masculine traits like anger, stubbornness, or violence which most females carry at least a small degree of to balance out their personality, just like most men carry at least a few tiny traits of the more traditionally feminine traits.
3. I was clinically depressed to a dangerously critical level. To this, Dr. Orndoff gave me the greatest validation of all. He said, directly to me, with consideration of your home life and your mother’s many indications of paranoid schizophrenia. I’m shocked you are as normal of a child as you are under such circumstances. His was recommending anti-depressants and going to encourage my mother to re-think her parenting tactics as well as maybe seek professional help for herself. I immediately begged (yes, as in pleaded tearfully!) Dr. Orndoff not to tell my mother ANY of these things. I told him point blank, “if you tell her any of that, I’ll never see you again and I’ll never be able to fix what’s wrong with me.” He insisted that because I was a minor child, he was obligated by law and ethics to give my mother his honest and straight professional assessment. And I knew that was the end of any validation that I wasn’t horrible and weird and bad and it also meant I’d not be able to correct whatever was so very WRONG WITH ME.
Oh and yes, mother was LIVID! She was NOT going to have me taking “happy pills” and thinking “taking a pill would solve all my problems in life!!!” ohhhhhhhh hell nooooo! There would be NO HAPPY PILLS for her HORRIBLE daughter who must have faked and lied about everything “just to get attention!” Mother was infuriated and disgusted at this man’s “complete incompetence” to fall for my “charade and my lies!”
And I never saw Dr. Orndoff again professionally. However, I was given a lead role in a play at our civic theatre a year later and after it was over and we lined up in the theatre lobby to greet the audience, HE WAS THERE! I couldn’t believe my eyes! He shook my hand very warmly and said that I had done wonderfully and that I had a really compelling stage presence that was undeniable and strikingly obvious. He encouraged me to continue to pursue theatre throughout my life. (This was a shining moment in life for me and I’m getting choked up even now just recalling how in awe I was that he’d came to see me perform and was saying such encouraging things to me.
And that’s the last I saw or heard of Dr. Orndoff until some years later when I was in college and mother called to tell me he’d died.
Thank you Dr. Orndoff for the words you spoke to a scared, confused, and beaten down teenage girl that she still holds onto to this very day. Thank you for being the only person who saw straight through my mother’s schemes and lies. Thank you for believing in me as a person and for patiently listening to and believing my experience.
One man today actually compared this to a bad date. You know, when he goes on a bad date with a gold digging bitch, he doesn’t make a fuss. He just takes them to an expensive restaurant and leaves after they order an expensive entree, then just never talks to them again. It’s that easy. Just be quiet and move on!
Yeah, that’s such an accurate analogy of trying to heal from narcissistic abuse and reclaim and rebuild your life after mass destruction! Just walk away from those people. Just don’t let them in your life . It’s THAT simple!
You need to just let it go and move on quietly with your life.
Meanwhile, I was quiet growing up abused, then I got free and decided to work on myself and my own shortcomings and faults rather than blame Mommie Dearest for how fucked up my head and heart and self esteem was. I quietly moved on. Straight into the arms of another pathological narcissist just like her. You know why? BECAUSE I JUST LET IT GO AND “MOVED ON”… because every fucking stupid mindset I’d learned came full circle back to everything my sociopath mother had spent my life convincing me: I’m unworthy of love. Love is only real if it hurts. But I must have deserved it. I’m only lovable and safe when I’m quiet and don’t complain and accept my due punishments, whatever they are. I just have to try harder to be better and if I try to be perfect then maybe I’ll have earned a tiny right to be loved and accepted, maybe I’ll get lucky enough even to see a flash of kindness if I’m really super convincingly quiet and accepting…a second of kindness perhaps for my fake persona that I have to wear convincingly in order to be loved at all…even cruelly “loved”.
Why can’t you just let it go? Ummm… like I let it go when he pinned me down on the floor and spit on me and choked me when I was 3 months pregnant after he came home from being out all night screwing another woman and I dared to ask him where he was because I’d been up all night scared he was injured or dead ?
Like I let it go when he spit on me and my infant child as she nursed at my breast for asking what a woman’s clothing receipt had been for? After he had told me months earlier that he “needed me to start holding him accountable for his actions ” if he was ever going to “learn how to be faithful”?
Like i let it go when he admitted to his sex addiction counselor that he even though he’d told me I was crazy and paranoid for months, that yes, indeed, he had been cheating the entire time and then coming home to abuse and belittle me after he did it? And confessed that he was so scared we were having a girl because he might be sexually attracted to her or her friends once she was a teenager?
Like I let it go that I didn’t have food for almost two full weeks when I was 3 months pregnant with our child and that wasn’t his problem because he was in sex addiction rehab and was “dealing with hurtful childhood memories” that had caused him to be an abusive cheater all his life?
Like I let it go that I asked Mommie Dearest to loan me $25 for groceries when I was 3 months pregnant and hadn’t eaten in almost 10 days and she told me, that’s what welfare is for…?
Like I moved on and left him asking for nothing but my child and my freedom to prevent her from seeing a man ever treat a woman with the disdain, disrespect, and cruelty like her dad treated me?
Like I just moved on and didn’t enforce child support so that he could have an easier time seeing his kids in another state? So that I wouldn’t make him resent and punish his kids for having to pay child support to their mother for them? So I struggled and fought to raise two kids by myself without his physical or financial help while he bragged that the amount of money he made was “obnoxious “… while I was trying to decide if I could splurge on name brand macaroni and cheese for the kids this week? All so his life would be easier and I could convince myself I could keep my kids safe as long as I didn’t rock the boat or upset him or force the issue of responsibility, truth, or child support?
Like I just walked away and “moved on” when my mother came to my hospital room in the ICU when I wasn’t able to speak or move on my own after a massive stroke and told me I “deserved what I fucking got”? 4 hours after having a brain blood clot, going without oxygen for an hour, and finding out I was pregnant, all while lying on an emergency room table not even understanding what in the fuck was happening ?
Like I let it go and just moved on that when I was hospitalized for three full months unable to walk or feed myself or sit up in bed on my own, neither my children’s father or my mother (who love these kids sooooooo much) stepped up to help with my 18 month old baby at home? That my 60ish dad had to take care of my baby himself alone? Plus take care of me too, like an infant when I was released 3 months later? That no one but my dad stepped up to help during a severe physical trauma while I was pregnant and the years of physical rehabilitation it required afterward just to develop the skills movement and brain cells to reconnect in order to just be able to pick up my child and hold her in my arms?
Like I just walked away and “moved on” to find another place to live after my children’s father deceived me into trusting him and then deceitfully stole my house that was never his and that he hadn’t paid for at all? Like I just replaced everything we’d ever owned after he told me I had “30 days to get the kids and me back to our home, forcing me to choose between everything we’d ever owned and the home we loved so much … just to go ahead and take our home anyway when we arrived 3 days later in plenty of time of his threat? So then my children and I forfeited everything we owned in the world and still he scammed our house from us anyway because I’d trusted him earlier to have his name on the deed even though we weren’t together? Because I’d stupidly trusted that he cared if his children had a roof over their heads more than his fury to punish us for not doing what he wanted us to do? Which was allow the very abuse I had left years earlier to protect our children?
How many times are you supposed to walk away and just “move on” from the horrific abuse and terror and devastation these people go out of their way to inflict upon you, your life, and everything you love…. EVEN WHILE YOU’RE QUIETLY JUST “MOVING ON”?
The abuse never stops. Somehow they find a way to keep hurting you as long as you live and you’re quietly trying to just stay out of their radar of torture and cruelty?
But for fucks sake, start talking about it and it’s not 5 FUCKING minutes before I’m defending MYSELF for perpetuating the “drama” by not just shutting the fuck up about it and moving on…Again .. and again… and again… from their destruction, lies, and abuse.
Last night, I made macaroni and cheese. I’m not telling you this because anyone on earth cares what I had for dinner. I’m writing of macaroni and cheese because it should contain a warning. That’s right. Macaroni and cheese provokes some serious emotional baggage, I’m telling you. That deliciously rich silvery packet full of golden cheese viciously smited me; locked me smack in the old memory bank I strive daily to keep myself locked out of.
I live alone now and I have little interest in grocery shopping these days. Cooking (the way I love to cook) for one just seems superfluous, so I scoured through my pantry for something on hand that would be quick and filling with minimal cleanup required. Lo and behold: a lonesome rectangular box of mac n cheese! I love mac n cheese and I’ve not had any in years. Literally, years. So….. ummm…. Yay!
Clueless as to what this sneaky little pre-packaged solitary supper in a box was capable of, I put the water on to boil. Innocently, I tore open the box still filled with eager delight that I had the little forgotten treasure on hand. I struggle with opening boxes, but that’s another story and nothing could burst my mac n cheese bubble of gratitude I was floating in at this moment. I managed to open the box and then – only then – did it hit me.
…a f**king tsunami of long held back memories flooded my eyes instantaneously with tears when I caught that first glimpse of the shiny silver packet of cheese inside peeking out at me among the flecks of pasta shells trying to bury it as though to protect me from the acute pain this cheesy treasure would bring. I’m immediately blurry eyed from bushels of salt stinging my eyeballs and instant asphalt-hot tears streaming like two waterfalls down my face. My hands shaking, I carefully pulled out the silver demon of painful nostalgia, regret, and furious anger all tossed together in this silly little cheesy packet. At this point, I’m still fairly confused about the spontaneous cry baby tsunami hitting me. Fuck, I just wanted to whip up some mac n cheese, for the love of God!
But my brain…or was it my heart? My soul?? my spirit???!? I can’t even know, I just know I’m overwhelmed so much that I couldn’t even catch hold of one individual thought/memory/feeling long enough to fathom what shard of my brokenness was cutting the deepest. They all started to cut and dig and the salt in my tears seemed to be scattered instantly inside a billion winds of unidentified mac n cheese puncture wounds.
It was all too brief visits to Daddy’s safe haven where I was so very little and so very safe and happy, gloriously excited for daddy to set that plate down in front of me. I’m only 4 and mac n cheese is my favorite and Daddy actually made it! I never get this at “home”… I’m sitting right next to him on the nubby red loveseat with tv trays in front of us that I can barely reach from sitting, but I wanna be like Daddy and we are watching re-runs of Hogan’s Heroes while we eat. And it’s my favorite because Daddy laughs at the tv so much that I laugh too, even though I don’t even understand what’s funny. I just know I love that sound and I want to hide right there inside those notes of laughter forever. this is the only address for joy and laughter i know. It’s the only residence of the safety to feel at all, much less to allow my very own laughter to bubble up and explode from my belly in uncontrollable giggles. It’s safe to be happy here. It’s safe to be silly. Laughter echoes on these walls long after the literal sound has stopped. Macaroni and cheese is visits to Daddy’s. It’s safety. It’s laughter. It is the home of momentary security and still being young enough that all there was was then, was right NOW. So in those moments, although just flashes, thoughts of sadness and fear and the knowledge that this was only a flash in time before I’d have to return to the real world could not co-exist. When you’re that little, now is all there can be and now is strong enough that all the fears and hurts and worries your 3 year old self normally carry are literally flushed away…in that moment. That moment is all there was…while a 3 year old is in it. And sometimes there was Mac n cheese in it too.
It was a brief flash of college years and making it for my entire meal just because I could… And the childhood memories of comfort it brought back even then while far away from home’and having no friends and no daddy anywhere near. Reminiscing on the flashes of Mac n cheese laughter that thankfully spotted the otherwise chronic pain and confusion of my childhood as spurts of temporary relief from the excruciating loneliness of my reality back then. Reminiscing about those little breaks from the tortures of the cruel prison of childhood and still young enough to almost believe your daddy will live forever, just because he just must.
Mac n cheese was raising two beautiful little toddlers all alone with a physical disability in subsidized housing. It was stretching the pennies of a fixed income to afford to try to feed them the stuff they liked. It was the excitement I felt on the rare days when I splurged to afford the “good brand” for $2.69 rather than the powdery generic .34 cents kind I usually had to buy while their perfectly physically-abled, healthy father made $800k+ a year, lived alone in a gigantic house, drove fancy new cars, enjoying the fortune of freedom and good jobs, and the fun party life of a healthy single man who took his kids for weekends and vacations whenever it suited his fancy or his work and personal schedule.
Mac and cheese is the pang in your gut at the grocery store of the life a traumatic brain injury resorts you to when you’re affected at 26 years old. It’s not having the strength, coordination, or balance to play normally with your little children who so desperately want you to play with them, or bathe them without help from your dad, or run with them on the playground, or brush the tangles out of their hair using both hands to make it easier for their tender scalps.
Mac and cheese is the cheap stuff you feel guilty for serving your children when you know their perfect little grins and glorious giggles, hugs and tiny “I love you Momma’s” so deserve the rich, creamy, delicious kind. The guilt of not having the physical strength to raise them the way you’d always dreamed and work a regular full time job. its not having the strength to pick them up when they reach their tiny arms out and say “hold me momma!”. It’s having the strength to pick them up on good days and fearing you’ll lose your balance and fall with them in your arms, and maybe scar their sense of security or faith in you as a momma, thus creating trust issues you swore your children would never have to battle It’s your words slurring with fatigue on the second bedtime reading of Winnie the Pooh because your brain is unable to formulate words well after a long day… and you can’t hold them both at the same time like they deserve and hold a book too, but they so deserve to hear it a second time.. And they also deserve to be held tightly with two strong arms until they drift of to sleep feeling adored, loved, secure, and safe, the way you never did as a child … Except during the rare Mac n cheese visits at your daddy’s house.
This Mac n cheese was the childhood my children deserved rather than the one I was able to give them.. The one I’d always dreamed of giving them when i had played with dolls as a child and fantasized about what kind of momma I could be someday, promising myself I would you’d be everything my mother never was. My children would not know fear or insecurity. They would not know the desperate longing for a momma that played with them every day and read to them and laughed with them and chased away their bad dreams and allowed them to know security in their environment and security of faith and love in and outside of themselves.
This Mac n cheese was the regret of feeding my children cheap shit so that I’d never have to depend on their dad for money to survive. Not caring about child support rights or entitlement or all the money in the world if it meant having to raise my daughters watching their dad cheat, lie, and abuse me. It meant going without just to not even risk fighting legally or otherwise with him about custody when I knew I didn’t have the money for the battle because he had all the time, freedom, and money while all I ever wanted to have was my children and the ability to raise them with love and understanding, peace and security…and joy. It was choosing to encourage their relationship with the man who abused me after I left him and he had destroyed my dreams and who didn’t care about much other than sex with “strange”, job power, and making money to buy nice things for himself. It was passing on child support for 15 years no matter my disability or how much money he was free to go out and make because love and peace for my kids’ home life seemed more important than buying the good kind of Mac n cheese for them.
Mac n cheese was the ache of remembering when my children loved me in spite of my disability. The excruciating torment of recalling countless nights of guilt at being poor, being disabled, being single, and being afraid of not ever being even close to everything I had always dreamed of being for them… Of the hurt at wanting to give them so much more but literally not being able to. It was The indescribably deep wound that comes from unexpectedly losing the only parent who had loved and wanted me as a child or as an adult.
Mac n cheese is the endless sting of betrayal that my children turned against me, lied about me, negate me as ever being their mother even, crucifying my every flaw and every life hardship, magnifying every mistake big or small, denying any good I brought to their lives. All on top of the years of guilt at already not being enough, not being worthy, not being anything but a disappointment to every one … To Everyone except my dead daddy who has abandoned me once again and finally for forever.
I will never make or eat macaroni and cheese again. That stuff is just vicious.
Abuse by proxy, child abuse, Cruelty, Darlene Higgins, Domestic violence, gaslighting, heartless, Lies, Malignant Narcissism, manipulation, Mark DeDeaux, monsters, narcissists, parental alienation, Predatory, Sick Fucks, Thieves, triangulation
To whom it may concern:
I’m somehow to try to understand that the people who have destroyed my life, my mother, Darlene Higgins, and my children’s father, Mark DeDeaux, are hurt and angry at the destruction they allege I created in their lives.
Apparently, these people of whom I have zero (read zilch, nada) recollection of having done any damage or inflicted any pain upon were able to convince my children of what a horrible, awful, undeserving, worthless human being I am.
I haven’t seen either suffer or lose material property, or finances, loved ones, jobs, or their dignity at my hand. I’ve not been at all aware of this “destruction” which has caused their hate for me. Hate so big that they relentlessly poisoned my children against me, apparently because of the awful things I’d done to them? These things I’m totally unaware of and can’t find a single memory of…
I’ve wanted to understand the hate, the burning desire to punish, the massive cruelty… God, I’ve wanted to understand.
Being that I’m that person who once got angry at a virtual stranger and merely said ugly words to her… and still carried the memory, guilt, and remorse for those words 20 years later. Being that girl who accidentally ran across this virtual stranger twenty years later and immediately apologized for this misdeed I enacted upon her so many years earlier. I apologized to a woman who didn’t even recall what I had said, so futile and apparently non-damaging was this “heinous abuse” I heaped upon her of which the guilt I carried twenty years later still. I guess the “cruelest” I ever intentionally was, was not only enough to cause all those years of remorse and regret inside me, but not even close to enough for this woman to even recall. It is flabbergasting to try to wrap my head around the awful things I must have done to my mother and my ex to make them both hate me enough to destroy me. How can I not recall what I did?
I recall being a child. A desperate for love, desperate to please, pathetic for approval little girl. I remember that. I remember praying every night that God would show me how to earn and deserve my mother’s love. I remember not getting any answers and I remember trying everything my little mind could think of : I just had to be perfect. And after all, my mother was perfect in my eyes, so I could be perfect too, right? I came from the goddess of perfection so if I tried hard enough and never quit trying to be pretty, funny, smart, polite, obedient, loving, sweet, and deserving, I could get her love. I remember that not working. I remember lying to protect myself from punishment and getting in big trouble. I remember telling the truth because my mother “hated liars” and still getting in big trouble. I remember trying to be pretty and getting in trouble. I remember trying to be intelligent and getting in trouble. I remember not lying for her when she cheated on her husband and getting in trouble. I remember painting my nails and getting in trouble. I remember shaving my hairy legs like every one else in my gym class did and getting in trouble. I remember forgiving my friend for being mean to me and getting in trouble. I remember sticking up for myself with others and getting in trouble. I remember not sticking up for myself to others and getting in trouble. I remember being noisy no matter how hard I was trying to be quiet and getting in trouble. I remember trying harder to be even quieter and still getting in trouble. I remember missing my daddy and getting in trouble. I remember a babysitter giving me a piggy back ride and getting in trouble. I remember writing my aunt a letter telling her how much I missed her and getting in trouble.
I also remember sneaking to use the phone to talk to friends and getting in trouble. I remember sneaking boys over on Halloween to play Atari and getting in trouble. I remember having vaginal discharge in my panties before my period and getting in trouble. I remember trying to overdose on alcohol and getting in trouble. I remember having people over when mother was out of town and getting in trouble. I remember getting a C in geometry and getting in trouble. I remember asking for help with my math homework and getting in trouble.
I remember using the wrong tone of voice and getting in trouble. I remember having the wrong look on my face and getting in trouble. I remember defending my sister and getting in trouble. I remember not defending my sister and getting in trouble.
I remember letting my first boyfriend beat me and getting in trouble. I remember smoking cigarettes and getting in trouble. I remember not eating for 12 days while pregnant and being told to “go get on welfare” I remember caring about the father of my child and getting in trouble. I remember getting sick because I was pregnant again by the same man and getting in trouble. I remember wanting to have the same last name as my two children and getting in trouble. I remember almost dying and getting in trouble. I remember the psychiatrist who was supposed to tell me I was worthless defending me and telling mother she had serious parenting and mental illness issues and getting in trouble.
I’m not sure what I’ve forgotten. I’m truly clueless as to which of these awful things I did as a child made me deserve hate and cruelty; made me deserve to have my whole world ripped from me; or made me deserve to take the only love I had in the world. I’m not sure of the damage I did with these horrible acts. I must have done some serious damage, though to spark the punishments I received and continue to receive.
I would like to apologize for my worthlessness, for my awful acts which caused unbearable pain and destruction to my mother, but I can’t figure out where/what/how I caused any damage to her. I would gladly take responsibility for being born, breathing, being a child, being immature, being lost, being desperate for love except that I did not cause any of that. Please tell me what to apologize for? Once upon a time I was just an innocent child begging and desperate for my mother’s love and acceptance. I suppose I could apologize for stopping the begging? Only, I never stopped begging or trying. My mother decided at my second pregnancy that I no longer existed. I begged for a few weeks after that and finally had to stop begging because I was trying to raise two children with a handicap all on my own. I had to accept that nothing I ever did would make me worthy of her love or else I would have killed myself and left my two children with no mother at all.
In spite of the hatred you had toward me, I remember wanting my children to have the chance at you loving them. I remember Christmases and Thanksgivings alone so that you could be a grandma even though I didn’t have a mother. I remember my dad suddenly and unexpectedly dying and thinking she would care about me maybe then. I remember trusting her out of desperation again (like when I was a helpless child) and her filling my children’s heads not only full of shit, but fabricated half-truth shit…not even shit that was mine to own and take responsibility for. I remember meeting your first husband at the funeral (the one you told me all my life “beat you”) and feeling uncomfortable that after hating and punishing me for accepting and allowing myself to be abused by men all my life, that she would bring this man who “beat” her to my dad’s funeral. If I punched him would she love me? or would she hate me more?
I remember her hating everyone who made me feel loved. I remember her hating anyone who made me feel hated. I never understood what I needed to do/be/say/feel to be loved. I still don’t.
But most of all, I don’t see where all these horrible things I supposedly did ruined her life? Or even hurt her? Or how I knew what might hurt or upset her on any given day, as it changed so fast and often, I could not make sense of it. I would like to apologize and own my mistakes because I acknowledge I’m fucked up and worthless, but I honest to fucking god don’t know how I caused damage, except for being born, being a child, being confused, being desperate for love…. I wasn’t born with those things and I didn’t want them, how do I apologize for them? And if I do, will I finally deserve your love?
To the father of my children: What did I do to destroy your life? Please dear God tell me because knowing you has ruined everything I ever dreamed of. I lost my hopes, my dreams, my dignity, my health, my possibilities, my house, my lifetime memorabilia, and ultimately my children…. Because? What was it I took from you? What did I destroy and damage so much for your life? I gave you two children. I gave you 24/7 total access to them. I gave you holidays with them. I gave you carte blanche to their lives and their hearts. I gave you good stories to them about our past (which were lies). I gave you my last hope of my childhood innocence. I gave you my health. You took my house and every happy memory I had from before or since I knew you.
What was it I took from you? Where is the misery I caused? What did I do to you? Yes, I left you. I left you after you destroyed (what I then thought was total destruction at least) and tried to save my children from growing up watching their mother be treated like a worthless, useless piece of shit. Yes, I did do that. And I still gave you 24/7 carte blanche access to their lives, their love, their time.
Please tell me what I took from you? Please tell me how I’m an awful person? Please tell me where the damage I did is that destroyed your hopes and dreams, your health, your past, present, or future? PLEASE????? Please tell me???????????
Because I’m not prideful or stubborn about being wrong or making mistakes like some I know. I actually prefer to address and acknowledge my errors, and apologize, especially if they’ve hurt someone or damaged their life in any way. I would love to apologize for all the things I did but I can’t bring myself to apologize for trying to live, for breathing, feeling, or wishing to be loved rather than abused. I would love to say I deserve every bit of what I’ve gotten. The strange thing is, these people can’t seem to tell me what cruel, awful, unforgivable things I’ve done to them. Not a single thing. Not now and not in my entire life. Yet their hatred flows and flows…and no one seems to think that’s abnormal except for me. Apparently, I’m the awful person because I can name what’s been done to me…to my children…to my health…to my life… I can name every single thing.
To the father of my children: you were lucky after all you had done to me that I even was willing to move to Vegas with our children and give you that chance. From the first week, our children were crying about your treatment of me and them. They hated it and I wasn’t going to subject them to everything I left you to protect them from. You didn’t pay for our house in advance. You didn’t lose any money. We lost all of our lifetime belongings, the innocence my children had for what kind of man they’d been raised to believe their father was, our car, and our home when you stole it “for our own good” in spite of the fact that you hadn’t been paying for it.
So if my big “crime” against you was leaving you back in 1997, again in 1998, and a third time in 2009 in Vegas after “only 3 months”, that’s bullshit. The third time my youngest came home from a day with you bawling and putting herself down was the final straw for me. That, after my oldest had cried her heart out the first weekend we’d arrived and was devastated we came all that way and you’d planned a weekend rendezvous with your latest flavor of the month for the day after we arrived from moving our lives literally across the country, leaving the only home and friends and family and foundation we’d ever know in our lives, because “you wanted your children closer”. Then told me “her heart was NOT broken” and that she could just “get the fuck over it” and she’d cried her heart out nearly every single day after that, hurt and miserable at how you treated us and at moving away from her friends and family at your whim just to be treated this badly by you , as well as watched you insult and belittle me, her mother, for what I wore inside my own house to clean on a 102 degree day in the desert, even though you’d entered our home unexpected and uninvited…apparently just to hurl insults at me and our daughters for the type of clothes I was wearing to clean in.
I will never apologize for your choices. You had choices to hurt us or not to. You had choices to treat us with the respect we deserved for uprooting our entire lives for you or not to. You, on the other hand, gave us only two choices: the choice to stay and put up with being disregarded, devalued, and mistreated or leave and protect ourselves from more.
That was on you and I will not apologize for it or own responsibility for how much it “hurt you” that we left. You gave us no choice. None. You cared only about your latest girlfriend and having all of us in your control at your beckon call or whim to play daddy…or not to play daddy. I didn’t do that “to you”. You did that to us. All three of us. Savannah and I definitely got the worst of it, but it hurt Lexi too, watching you do that to us
Although you like to play neurologist and tell people why I had a stroke when you’ve no clue why I had the stroke because even my actual neurologist couldn’t discover why I had the stroke, you know nothing. And you surely didn’t step up to the plate afterward when I was severely handicapped and rehabilitating so I could give birth to a healthy child and be well enough raise our children while you climbed the ladder to your success. You didn’t step up to the p[late to lend a hand with our children. You were too busy chasing money and women. Darlene didn’t step up to the plate. Only my dad stepped up to the plate to help us.
And for the record, the cause technically given for my stroke was stress. I’m sure in no small measure stress which stemmed from years of abuse at the hands of the very people who run around crying what an awful person I am. Stress from the fear of having to tell Darlene who hated your guts that I was having a second child with you. Stress at once again not having a mother to hold my hand through my pregnancy. Stress at being dependent on you as the co-parent to my two children. Stress at the disappointment of not giving my children or myself the one thing I most wanted for them: a mother and father raising them together in their home…a happy, loving home with both their parents for my children. Again, due to your choices of sex addiction, cheating, and abuse. Darlene’s hatred of you and shunning me from her life because of my relationship with you in addition to your abuse, lies, and cheating in our relationship was the stress I had that caused me to have a stroke and become disabled for the rest of my life. I do not owe you an apology for that. I did not do that “to you”. Once again rather, you assisted in doing that to me. Leaving me with two options only: to stay with you and let my children grow up watching their mother treated horribly or to leave and protect myself and my children from growing up in that environment. As usual, you were the one with the ample choices. I will not take responsibility for how that “hurt you”.
Stress from a literal lifetime of abuse at your hand and the hand of my mother are what caused my stroke. I do not owe you or anyone an apology for that.
I have to wonder how your life is exactly what you wanted. Darlene’s life is exactly what she wanted. Yet, I’m the bad guy who’s worthless and awful, with some string of alleged “crimes” done against you people…the very people who have taken everything I ever worked to have. My family, my health, love, jobs, future, hopes, and dreams.
Please do help me to understand how I’ve done any damage whatsoever to your lives? Where is the abuse I heaped upon you? Where is the place where I screwed you over to get better for myself? Where is the fucking place that you needed or wanted me for anything and I did not show up? Where in the fuck is it? Where in the fuck are these damages done for my plethora of heinous crimes against either of you that you claim as you ripped my heart from my body, my children’s love from my life, and my life belongings, my home, my happiness, my hope, and my only joy left out of the desolate destruction of life I had left in the wake of you both?
Where the fuck is it?