Seven years ago when I chose to come forward with my revelation of childhood abuse I tried to rehearse how each part of my life would change. While I tried my best, there are some things that have happened that I thought would never happen. When I exposed to the world my secret, I had in effect destroyed my immediate family. My abuser was my father and the moment I revealed my story I knew I could never allow him to come back into my life. There would be absolutely no turning back. I had rehearsed that over and over and I was ready for it, I was ready to end that relationship. What I didn’t rehearse was how my mother would react. I just kind of just hoped for the best.
It is when you press someone up against the wall that you reveal their true colours. When I came forward with my story, my father acted as I had expected. Being who he is, I anticipated each move that he would make. That being said, it was the way my mother had reacted that has haunted me -even to this day. I was never quite sure how she would react to my secret so I never pressed her for a reaction. I was hoping she would reach out and do what any other mother does when their child is hurting. When I finally did get a response from her, it was one that I can never forget. She simply begged “Let’s talk this out, talk to your father and see what he has to say. We can get through this”. This statement broke me. The fact that my mother -for whatever reason- wants me to go back to him to bury the hatchet with the monster that broke my innocence has cut me to the core. When she first told me this, I wanted to believe that she was not being completely sincere. Unfortunately, as time has passed this theme still holds true each time I get any piece of correspondence from her.
I have never received any kind of indication that she believes me. I have never received any kind of emotional support that a rational mother would give her child in a situation like this. Each time I am contacted by her, it is simply to state that she misses me and that she wishes to be a happy family again. I never once made her choose me or him, I simply made sure she knew that under no circumstance was he to be in my life. She was welcomed in my life, but not if he was going to be any part of it. Yet to this day, she still sleeps in the same bed with the man who raped her only son.
As my life unfolds and I grow stronger without parents in it, Mother’s Day still serves as the most difficult day in the entire year. Most holidays have drastically changed without my parents’ involvement but for the most part, the changes have been quite enjoyable. Mother’s Day hurts, it stings and my heart bleeds. I am not myself on this day and I feel guilty to not be joyful and present for my wife and mother-in-law who have been incredible pillars of support but I miss my mother. I have vowed to myself that this will be my last Mother’s Day waiting for signs that she will believe me. I need to heal and move on from this and the only way to do this is to give up on her.
It doesn’t matter how old you are, how far away from home you have been or what kind of relationship you have had in the past. To not be believed by your parent about something so emotionally painful as abuse has to be the most difficult thing any child can endure. My ten-year-old self-longs to have his mommy believe him. He has been waiting for too long for her to help and it’s time for him to grow up and realize that the person who gave him life won’t be there to save it. He is going to have to do this himself.
It has been seven years, the door to my heart that my mother once had open has been closed. I am moving on. My life depends on it.