I’ve been dealing with this for as long as I can remember. I’ve just recently decided to do some research on mental and verbal abuse between a parent and child. I’m adopted and I’ve also read online that kids who are adopted may have attachment problems when they get older and may have problems establishing relationships for fear of rejection. Also, the child might not be “cuddly or touchy-feely” my mom constantly TELLS me, how much I don’t love her because I never hug her. She doesn’t even ask me if I love her or not… she tells me I don’t. Tonight, we were driving home and she told me that I have no sympathy or empathy for anyone and that if she was laying in the road that I would run over her. And she talks over me every time I try and justify that she’s wrong. Back to the adoption thing, she tells me how my parents must’ve been murders and liars and ****** because I’m nothing like her and how she’s raised me. I didn’t turn out right. She says she’s going to send me away to a boarding school and goes, “If you don’t want to be here so bad, if you hate me so much that you have to hurt me then just go away! I’ll take a second loan on the house; just go away to a boarding school!” when I tell her that I don’t want to leave she just says, “I can never tell with you, you always act so depressed.” She says she’s going to send me back to the orphanage and that she didn’t have to love me, she doesn’t have to love me… and that she doesn’t. So I tell her that I don’t love her either. But I do because, she’s my mom and she’s not always so mean. She gets really mad at me for not cleaning my room and miscommunications and calls me stupid and a ***** and tells me I’m going to hell where all the rapists and murders are because I didn’t clean my room. Sometimes she’s really nice and buys me things, she’s a school teacher and a very smart person. I think she’s just very very stressed because after she gets mad and does all these mean things she calls me into her room and talks to me more nicely. She doesn’t apologize, but I never noticed until now and she says that I’m smart but she doesn’t know why I do such stupid things. And she twists my words when shes calm and says, “I know exactly what I said, I didn’t call you stupid I said you act stupid.” My friends have noticed too, and their parents have noticed that my mom is very controlling, I have to call her everynight I’m at a friend’s house, even when I’m not staying over or she gets very mad. “I asked you to do one simple thing and you forgot, you never remember a damn thing!” My friends notice my mom blaming me for everything, everything. When they mention it to me I get defensive and brush it off like nothing. Don’t even get me started on grades in school…
I read that people who are mentally abused grow up to be violent or temperamental or just have low self esteem and confidence. But I don’t have low self esteem and a lack of confidence. I have a lot of friends and everyone things I’m super funny and nice and pretty artistic. I only think I’m dumb and worthless right after the verbal abuse… but the next day being “dumb and worthless” isn’t the only thing I think about. Also my mom gets super mad and then there’s like a two day period of walking on egg shells and minor peace and then she explodes again and then tells me how much she loves me. She threatens to call the police to have them come and talk to me about being a bad child and tells me I should go to a shrink because “Normal people don’t think” the way I do or Act the way I do or Talk… And she yells at me for not making her a card that says “sorry” on the front for what I did wrong. My grandfather died and she said “When my grandpa died I wrote my parents a letter saying how much I loved him and how much I respected him and miss him. What do I get from you!? Nothing! I would think that you know by now.”
My question Is… Since it’s not (regular every day) verbal abuse…. And since I’m not showing any signs of a verbal abuse victim… do I count as a verbal abuse victim? What do I do…? I love my mom:P even if she tells me I don’t, I do.
Well, it doesn't sound very nice, what she is doing. Not so much the getting angry, since everyone has a right to flare up with a temper every now and then. But the language, calling you names like "dumb and worthless," and claiming that you must have come from some terrible background, and saying you're stupid, those things can stick and become erosive to your self-esteem. Can you talk to her about going to a counselor together? If she's willing to, I'd start to keep a journal or even use a tape recorder in your pocket, so some of the language she uses when she is angry is on record. (The last thing you want to do is have an argument in front of a counselor that was about the words she uses, with her saying she doesn't use those words and you saying she does.) If she could tone down her angry language and hurled accusations, and learn some better ways to communicate with you, it sounds like there is enough affection still there that it would carry the day.
I would say the same thing as Annie that some counselling here would help her a lot, she sounds like she is needy and wants to be reassured by you all the time which I appreciate is hard , so try to get her to speak to someone who will help .The remarks she says to you are not nice and she needs to address the issue .
The problems you have with your mother probably have nothing to do with being adopted. There are plenty of biological mothers who behave in the identical manner. I know because I had one. They have something a little wrong in the upper story. With time my mother never changed.
You probably fear that you will be just like her. Don't worry about that. I am one of five. Four of us do not have her ugly traits. But there is a fifth who has what we call "the gene." And it might well be a gene.
She sounds like she has a mood disorder, or maybe menopausal stress, or marital problem anxiety (you don't mention a father at all, so I don't know what situation is for her).
The interesting thing in life is, some people who are have difficult parents are gravely affected by it, and can never recover, even in adulthood.
Some people who have difficult parents seem to glide right through it, seeing things clearly and still having self-confidence and joy in life. You're like those people.
If I were you, I wouldn't spend much time researching the effects of having a difficult parent relationship. That just further embraces the problem, and makes it a part of you, instead of a part of her.
Were you adopted from a foreign country orphanage, instead of as an infant in the US? That's kind of an interesting dynamic, and might shed some light on your mom. Some parents who adopt from orphanages (not all) want to "rescue" a child. And have that child forever grateful. That's not how it works, children aren't forever grateful, they need help and care and then the parent becomes angry and hurt that the child who should be worshipping them isn't, they're just acting like a normal kid. Does that ring true to you?
To second what RockRose says, though she said it somewhat neutrally, please do know that you aren't expected to worship your parent. You are expected to treat them with respect, and to love them if you can, but walking around feeling overtly grateful all the time is a whole heck of a lot to ask. I would be worried if my son was saying "Thank you for taking care of me" all the time to me, as I think that is my role, and he should be able to rely on me to do it. Maybe your mom has a touch of thinking you're supposed to be overtly thankful at all times, and if so, I'm sorry, that would be a tough burden to carry. Again, see if she will go to counseling with you, and try to talk some of this out.
I wanted to mention that her expecting you to check in often might have to do with her caring, not controlling. A lot of moms are worried that when their kid is out of their sight, either something will happen to them or they will be exposed to bad things or get in a position to make bad choices. I wouldn't beef too much if your parent is strict regarding things like needing to know who you are with and expecting you to be home at a certain time. It's better for your safety. If it is taken to an extreme (such as demanding you not have friends and always be at home) that is different, but it didn't sound like you were saying that.
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