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Memory #8

June 12, 2012

Cover of "People of the Lie: The Hope for...

A friend of mine read my blog and she commented to me that my Mom must have been abused as a child. My Mother must have had a rotten Mother.  I have thought about it. My Mother had a lot of siblings and they did not turn out like my Mom. Many of them have daughters and they love their daughters as well as their sons.

I didn’t know my maternal Grandfather but everyone always described him as a kind and gentle soul. My maternal Grandmother was not warm or fuzzy. I did not particularly like her but I was not afraid of her. I actually enjoyed being with her when she was elderly. None of their kids were or are warm and fuzzy. I don’t really believe my Mother or her siblings were abused. I think some childhoods can be so horrific that the kids are messed up for life. A lot of abusers have been abused. My Dad had a hard childhood. He was not an abuser though. I had a hard childhood but I don’t think I have the right to be cruel to others. I will call people out for rotten behavior but I don’t pick fights or pick on people for sport or fun. I don’t think it is fun.

I actually think my Mom has a complex psychological profile. I think she has a narcissistic personality disorder. I also believe she has Munchausen’s Disease where she mostly pretends and exaggerates health issues for attention. My Mother will go to the Mayo Clinic for a sore toe. She has supposedly been in bad health and dying since I was a kid. My Mother had a career but her health made it so she never had to wash dishes, clean or do anything for anyone. She did special things for her élite group of people that she loved, or somehow wanted to impress or use. (I am not sure my Mother really loved or loves anyone.) My Mother’s health has always flared up when she is not the center of attention. For example, at a wedding, she called  the ambulance to take her to the hospital. It took all eyes off the wedding and placed them my Mother of course. My Mother is in her mid 80’s and truthfully, most of her health issues have been inside her head. The doctors found a tiny place in her breast that they did a needle biopsy on a few years ago. They treated it with radiation. The doctor explained to me about the stages of cancer from 1-4 at that time. He said my Mother’s cancer really was a zero level. It was a place and it needed to be treated but it was not advanced cancer by any means. Naturally my Mother has called herself a survivor since then and after I had to have my boob cut off, she has claimed that she had a lumpectomy, which is a surgical procedure where they remove part of the breast tissue. She actually has been really upset, not that I had cancer, but that my cancer was more severe than hers. It is just crazy of course.

Some of my Mother’s chronic health problems have cleared up and flared up suddenly. I think she has had allergies but she has been to countless specialists in many states for a runny nose. She is a doctor shopper, a person who keeps checking out doctors until she finds one that tells her what she wants to hear. Her regular doctor told her that a tiny place on her leg was a wart. After a dozen more doctors who told her the same thing, she finally went to a dermatologist who told her it was cancer and that it needed to be removed immediately. They cut off the place in the office, but she tells everyone she had surgery. She was able to get people to bring her food and wait on her for several weeks. She has always wanted to be sick enough to get attention and get out of doing anything she does not want to do. She hasn’t want to be sick enough to miss out on anything she wants to do. She has manipulated people for as long as I can remember with her health.

There is another dimension beyond the personality disorders going on with my Mother. I think it is evil. I know that sounds harsh. It is harsh. I don’t say it lightly though. I don’t think the term evil should ever be used lightly. If you have not read M. Scott Peck‘s book, People of the  Lie, do so. It explained evil in a way that helped me really understand the situation. Evil is subtle. It is not a devil with horns. Evil is confusing, an actual sign of itself. More than anything, I find my Mother to be confusing. I also found her to have similarities with the people Peck described in his book. For example, he talked of a boy who tried to kill himself. Peck was the shrink and he found out the parents had given the boy the gun his brother had used to shoot himself. They claimed they were poor and didn’t see a reason to let the gun go to waste. There are lots of examples of people who are evil. They are not mass murderers or cannibals. They are everyday people who do small, sick things.

I am not explaining it well. Check out the book. Peck is a magnificent writer. This book was recommended to me by one of my therapists after I had described my Mother to him. I was pretty shocked by this recommendation and the implications at first but over time, it made more and more sense to me. Another reason I suspect there is something evil in my Mother has to do with her eyes. I have seen her eyes go reptilian. Her eyes actually change and take on a snake appearance. When her eyes look like that, what I see in her eyes feels like pure hatred to me. I have seen this a few times with my Mother. I have only seen it once in another person. It is a horrifying thing to see. Hatred. It is chilling. Once while visiting my Mother, I was reading the paper while my Mother was looking at me. I was not looking at her. My husband was watching her though and he saw the look, the reptilian look. It scared the pee out of him. He is scared of my Mother. I am too. I have always been afraid of my Mother. Mortally afraid. That, to me is perhaps the biggest clue to evil. It is terrifying. There is something off when a child is terrified of a parent. My husband is fearless. To know he is afraid of her, scares me even more.

Sorry this is such a heavy blog entry.

  1. I just found you through a pingback to my site.. I just wanted to say, your mother is so much like mine. You aren’t alone. Remember that. You are a survivor.
    Fiona 🙂

    • Thank you for your kind words. I am sorry your Mother is like mine. I enjoyed your site. Wishing you joy.

  2. Thank you for the pingback to my site – I am listing you in my blogroll and I am a devotee. I read the book and it was sickening. The psychologist didn’t even want to offer counselling to the parents because they were too evil to deal with and even he, a professional, just wanted them out of his office. I also remember the story of the good-looking, sociopathic 13-year-old boy with business cards (!) and the distance he kept between himself and his grandmother with his cold, quiet defiance. Yes your mother is definitely a Munchausen – the only good thing here is that you weren’t her proxy and it was you who spent your life in and out of hospitals. It sounds as though you are living a well-adapted life in spite of your Mother. Bravo.

    • Thank you for your comments. You are one of the few people I know of who has read this book. It is a hard read emotionally speaking. At least it was for me. Yes, you are right. Thank God I was not her proxy. I have thought about that a lot and consider it a miracle somehow that I was not used that way. I refuse not to live a happy, well-adapted life. I won’t give in to my Mother’s wishes by living or being less than the best I can be. I am stubborn that way. I figure happiness is the best revenge. I have an inner hell that I work on daily, sometimes minute by minute. Writing this blog is my way of finally working through that private inner world that needs healing. Thank you again. You are awesome. Sending you love and joy.

      • I’m so glad that there are people who get it. I live that inner hell too. I have been told I have C-PTSD but still noone gets the nightmare on the inside that’s constantly happening. You do. I’m sorry you do, but glad we aren’t alone xx

  3. Me too, glad we aren’t alone. Your words mean a lot to me. Thank you for taking the time to respond to my post. What does the C stand for in PTSD? I am sorry and sad that you also have that inner nightmare. I pray we find our way to happiness and peace.

    • Hi LIlly, I think it’s totally possible that we can heal. Talking about it is a first step towards that. C-PTSD stands for COMPLEX PTSD. Apparently it’s a fairly new label, not yet in the DSM but probably in the updated one. The difference is that the trauma suffered was long term, ongoing, over years and years, rather than a singular traumatic event or short term, as with most soldiers. As you can see, it’s far more true for people in situations like ours. xxx

  4. Hi Fiona: I am glad to learn about C-PTSD. It makes a lot of sense. I think there needed to be this distinction. There really is a difference between chronic, long term trauma vs singular. Both are horrible but they are different. I agree with you. We can heal. Thank you for writing. I love your screen name by the way!

  5. healinginvisiblewounds permalink

    O boy, does this entry resonate with me! I cannot recall the amount of times I have thought my mother is evil, and then of course, the immediate guilt at thinking such a horrible thing about your own mother who has only ever claimed to love you and has ‘given up so much for you’

  6. It is hard to handle the thought that a Mother can be evil. It is just creepy.

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