Hello again, Mother.
This is the letter that’s going to be the hardest to write. It’s so hard because these were the years that defined a lot of my struggles, a lot of my hurt. I hate to bring them up, but these are all things that I need to talk about. While I am doing well, and am happy, there is a lot that I still have to heal from.
High school was never my favorite. Those were the years that I thought I would be able to go hang out with friends, enjoy life and experience new things! I was wrong. My only time I got to see friends was at school, and as a teenager, that was hard. I wasn’t allowed to do anything really.
My freshman year of high school was okay. It was probably the best year of high school for me. I had fun with my friends at school, did my work and did well. I was smart, and determined to get good grades. We got a new house and got to move in, and we were so happy to be moved into the city and into a nicer home. That year you and I got a lot closer, and we made most of the decisions for the family. Unfortunately, it didn’t matter much what dad said to you.
Sophomore year I had my permit to drive with you and dad. It was fun learning to do something new! I don’t remember much of this school year. I remember taking advanced classes and doing well in them, and this wasn’t a bad year for me either,aside from the birthday fiasco. The summer between sophomore and junior year was one of the best summers of my life. I was finally allowed to do something! One of my best friends had told me about this play, Broadway The Big Picture. It was a series of 6 musicals, and we took several songs or scenes from each and got to dance and sing to them. You and dad allowed me to do that. Every day for a couple months I would go to play practice for a few hours. I was in every single one. We did Caberet, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Wicked, Moulin Rouge, Evita and Hair. I was having the time of my life! I had fun roles and met new friends and ACTUALLY got to see them everyday.
I believe that it was that Christmas that began to create a rift in the whole family. You and dad “weren’t feeling well” and didn’t want to go to our family Christmas Eve party, and you wouldn’t let anyone come pick us kids up. We saw car lights pull in to the drive, and so you made us kids go hide in the basement and you wouldn’t answer the door. Our aunts and uncles had came to give us our Christmas gifts. You never answered the door, and we never got our gifts. As a kid, that was devastating. Christmas was something so magical, and it got tainted that year.
Junior year was one of the hardest for me. I will never forget that time of my life. I was in AP courses and everything was going okay. You allowed me to play tennis, then made me quit a week later. Then I met Matthew towards the end of the year. He was funny, cute, and I enjoyed being around him. We met at work, McDonald’s, and decided to go on a date after a joke was made. We began dating in March of 2012. That summer was a life changer for me. I will never forget the events that unfolded. I think that that was the summer that you made your club penguin account. While it was a children’s game, you decided to make an account. Then you met Jake. You begin to spend all of your time on your computer. Our bond was closer than ever however, as I had to keep your secrets for you. You and I would watch countless movies and go on walks together when you weren’t talking to him. You would stay up super late to talk to Jake, even though he was my age. The two of you had a relationship that was complicated, and claimed to be only a friendship. You never told him you were my mom. Instead, we were best friends from childhood and we spent a lot of time together and went to the same school. You made fake Facebook accounts, and would send him old pictures, or show him pictures of me. You hid a lot from dad regarding this, and I saw it as something that no one else did. You spent more time talking to Jake, and looking up music to show him, than spending with us. You would buy him things from toys-r-us to give him the codes for free clothes on the game. You were overly protective over your laptop. I didn’t think much of it at the time, but I thought you were my best friend.
That summer Matthew and I didn’t get to spend a whole lot of time together. You let us see each other once a week, for an hour. I was never allowed to go to his house, even if his mom was home. I didn’t understand it. You would belittle him when he wasn’t around, and tell me you thought he was ugly and not as attractive as your ex, Scott. We began to get in fights over how much time I was allowed to spend with him, and it began to hurt our friendship. That’s the thing though, you stopped acting like a mother, and more like a manipulative friend.
That summer also brought a few scarring events.
The fact that I was grounded so frequently, really sucked. I was grounded more than either of the boys. Although we were close and did everything together, I seemed to do everything wrong. I could however, bribe you to unground me, even if it was secretly. I would give you money, or buy you things that you wanted. Although I wasn’t grounded in the time that really stands out to me, I wanted to go see Matthew, and you wouldn’t let me. I begged and begged, and then eventually I told you I would give you my iPod touch that you and dad had gotten me for my 16th birthday. You accepted the bribe, and I got to see him for that measly hour.
I remember we were joking around on Chat Roulette. Some man had his penis out and started jerking off. You put the screen on me and made me watch him jerk off to me. You wanted me to “know what it looked like, so when I got older I wouldn’t be scared.” It makes me sick to my stomach to say that and repeat those words.
I remember standing in the bathroom in my bikini, getting ready to go swimming in our little pool. I was putting my hair up in a pony tail, and I will never forget the words that you said to me. “You look like you’re 6 months pregnant.” Shortly after you asked me if I wanted a new swim suit top to “cover my pregnant belly.” I was devastated, so I said yes. You brought me a tankini a few days later. I also remember you clearly telling me I had cellulite as I walked away. I was 110 pounds and 5’8. Since that day, I have been overly self conscious of my butt and my legs. After hearing those things, especially from my mother, I began to eat less. I didn’t want to be fat. I didn’t want to be what I deemed disgusting, as I already seemed to be in my own mothers eyes. I will never forget those days. Later on, when we began our vicious cycle of nasty fights, you told me that you never said those things….but I remember them so clearly. How could I even believe that, when you lied to me so much?
Summer kept proving itself difficult, so the sweet relief of my Senior year came. Matthew and I celebrated our 6 month anniversary that September. I don’t know how we made it that far, if I’m honest. That summer I treated him very poorly. I treated him how I thought everyone treated their spouse. I was cold, didn’t take some of the chances to see him, and I was just an all around bitch. But I loved him, and I was completely crazy about him. I realized as an adult that I treated him how I saw you treat dad. Because I was not allowed to go see my friends, I didn’t get to see how other families worked, so this was the only way that I knew. Anyway, that September he gave me my promise ring. I began wanting to see him more and more, and I fell more deeply in love with him. Then, you and I got in a fight that forever shaped the rest of my life.
I had been grounded, and wanted my phone. You took it away from me even though I had purchased it all on my own and paid for my own phone bill, as it was a prepay. I gave you 20$, and you let me have my phone in secret. You and dad were being mean to me that day, and so I was taking out my aggression on Matthew Via text message, so he called me. Well I had put my phone in my dresser, and the vibration was loud. My brother heard it, told on me, and here you came storming in. You ripped the phone out of my hand and began to text Matthew. I was bawling my eyes out. I asked you why you had to be so mean, and why you couldn’t just stay out of my relationship. Just like that, a switch flipped inside of you. You stormed off, me following closely behind. You threw my phone on the ground, it broke. You told me to get my shit and get out, that I had 30 minutes or you were calling the cops. You took my license, my key, and the ring you gave me. (Not to mention the ring you gave me to replace the one that broke that dad had given you, was one from your ex Scott.) I went to get a garbage bag and you told me I couldn’t use one because they were yours. I took what I could in my arms and had Matthew pick me up.
A few days later I left school to come check on you. Your eyes were swollen shut, and you were in bed covered with tissues. I comforted you and we agreed to work on our relationship. I still lived away from home, but I spent time with you guys. We had a talk about if I was going to come back home or not. You and dad sat at the dining room table with me, and dad cried a lot. I felt sad, but I knew that staying out of the home was what was best for me. We still had a relationship, and for Christmas that year you and dad got me an iPhone. I was paying for my bill, but you allowed me to get one. Things were going well, with me out of the home.
Things went sour, and I don’t exactly remember why or what happened. Maybe that’s when we had the talk about me coming home, I don’t remember the dates, I just remember it happening. Our relationship fell apart quickly. You were very aggressive with your words and I defended myself. The last time I had a real interaction with you, you had come to the house to see your mom or drop something of mine off. You made a rude comment and I told you you were a “fucking bitch.” You told me you couldn’t hear me in one of those sarcastic, provoking tones, so I told you again. You stormed your way up the stairs to my room. You pushed me up against my desk with your belly, and kept pushing into me. We were yelling at each other, and I told you you better not put your hands on me, which you replied with a sassy “oh I won’t.” Instead you just used your stomach. I made the mistake of leaving my iPhone on my desk. As soon as you saw it, you stole it, and ran back down the stairs. I followed, screaming after you. A few days prior to you stealing it, dad had asked for it back, and I told him no, as I was paying for it. He told me I didn’t pay for it, but the way he said it told me all I needed to know: that he knew I had. He was sent on your mission. The cops came, asked me for it, I told them no. They told you to take me to small claims court if you wanted it back. You sent me a bill asking for 800$ for a hospital bill and the cancellation of the phone.
When I followed you out on to the porch, we continued to be in each others faces. Words were exchanged. As you were walking away, I told you I hoped you died on the way home. That is something I am forever sorry about, and certainly didn’t mean. I have apologized a hundred times over for it, and you still don’t believe me, and I have accepted that.
In the following weeks I received a lot of messages from you. Telling me I wouldn’t amount to anything, I was stupid, a bitch, worthless, and that I could “have fun living off the government for the rest of my life.”
We stopped communication after that, but your torment didn’t.
I was very sick that spring. I went to the emergency room because both of my ears were draining and were very painful. The ER called you and dad answered. They asked if you would allow a doctor to see me. You told them no.
From that point forward, the school was involved with my life. They called CPS, got my my own health insurance, and made sure I was all set. You neglected me, even though I wasn’t living with you. They had to classify me as homeless, as you and dad still had guardianship over me.
I finally got my license back at 18. I had to go get a new SS card after you claimed I “lost” mine, although you never returned it to me. I never got my birth certificate as you claimed it was “yours.”
I graduated high school after a lot of traumatic things happened to me late that spring. That was a time that I really needed my parents and their support, as I was really struggling. You weren’t there, but grandma was. She stepped in as a mom.
I had a lot of support from grandparents. You and dad eventually cut all ties from family because of this.
Nick moved in that winter. You grounded him that summer when you found out he was even talking to me. You had brainwashed him to believe that I was a drug addict whore who partied all the time. I had only ever had one boyfriend. Never been to a party and never touched any drugs. All these people were coming to me telling me things they heard my family telling people I was. Yet, you didn’t even know me anymore at that point. He moved in with me because things at home weren’t good. I won’t speak on his behalf, and I certainly don’t want to cause anything, as he is lucky enough to have a relationship with his parents.
It still shocks me that I have two parents and a younger brother I haven’t seen in 5 years. The last time I hear from you was when you developed breast cancer. I was devastated for you. It hurt me, and it hurt that I had a mom that I didn’t even get to see, with cancer. I showed up at the house after your surgery one day. I brought flowers, a card, and your favorite candy bar. Dad shut the door in my face after a quiet “thank you.”
When I moved away from home, I realized a lot of things. Hanging out with friends is fun! I learned how people were really treated in relationships. I remember it was amazing to me that a family could be so close knit, as Matthews family was.
I am not trying to hurt you. Or myself. I just need to tell these stories. It helps me understand things, helps me move on, and helps me grow. I am still wrapping my mind around some of the things that happened. Each of these letters is a very disorganized mess, and I have so much more I could tell, but I am trying to narrow things down to what has really impacted me as a child, teen, adult, and person.
Regardless of all of this, I will always love you. I don’t hate you.
I have more to say, and there will be one last letter, explaining my feelings. I needed to write the first two to remind you of things, as it will help explain the third letter that I am going to write. I did this letter for me. I am sorry if it hurts you, I am sorry if you feel as though I am painting you in a negative light. I am just trying to tell things from my perspective, as at this point in my life, currently that’s the only one that matters to me.
I’ll talk to you soon,