If It's Not One Thing... It's Your Mother

That is a joke that often elicits laughs. It took me a long time to realize the truth of how my mother's behavior, borne out of her distorted sexuality, impacted me. In truth it caused a lifetime of suffering. It has been very important to look squarely at the truth. But then I remember the ways she showed love to me, in her own way, of course. Fortunately, I've not made the leap from bad mother to horrible women. That feels like painting with too broad a brush. The women I've met along the way have been very much like me... imperfect. Blaming them leaves me in a place where healing becomes difficult. There are no easy villains in my story. It doesn't mean I will invite or tolerate abuse from anyone in my life. But until it has been proved the person with whom I'm engaging has malevolent intent, I'll give them the benefit of the doubt.

I've mentioned my collaboration with a women to create a 12 Step meeting focused on recovery from child trauma. I noted when I spoke with her after our last meeting that I really hadn't known her well before. She said she hadn't felt safe with me and then offered that I seemed removed when I shared at meetings, not really with the moment. It would have been easy for me to criticize that observation but I've done just enough healing that I recognized the truth of what she was saying. I did tell her I understood what she was saying but I haven't thanked her yet for taking the risk of being so honest with me. She too is a sexual abuse survivor and I doubtless picked up on her defenses... even as she picked up on mine. We might even become friends as we share our vulnerability with one another.
 
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Congratulations Visitor!,
We might even become friends as we share our vulnerability with one another.
That's good news. I'm finding ways to let go of my mommy trauma and connect in healthy ways with women too! It's a relief! Congratulations on your efforts to create a healthy connection with your new friend.
Cheers,
Garth
 
To this day I am flabbergasted that some women would abuse their own sons. It seems counter-intuitive to the idea that mothers are the primary nurturers.

I am glad you didn't make the jump you mention. Too often that is done, regardless of the sex of the abused.
 
Hi Jaxson,
To this day I am flabbergasted that some women would abuse their own sons. It seems counter-intuitive to the idea that mothers are the primary nurturers.
You are definitely not alone with that. I find support for healing remarkably weak. Mother's get slotted into a semi-sacred "couldn't harm a flea", "I'm the martyr-victim here!" role very strongly. I think it's the balancing identity to men's incapability of acknowledging their vulnerability and weakness which definitely is the situation in early infancy. Open up to one and you are pretty much forced to open up to the other. This is what makes support so weak. Few people are capable of acknowledging these shadow identities in men and women.

An infant is incredibly sensitive and the mother-son relationship has great potential for problems in a culture that does not adequately support mothers (and their children as a consequence). Add to that the great deal of sexualized violence that women have experienced at the hands of men and a culture that doesn't not reward people for pursuing healing themselves of their past traumas and you have a recipe for traumatic reactions in a mother being imposed on her son.

I too am glad that Visitor hasn't made the leap from bad mother to horrible women. I wouldn't say I've been so intelligent. I've had a habit of allowing myself to be sucked into a triangle, not having my healing related needs met and getting severely stressed. I think it's called traumatic reenactment. It helps me see the pattern more clearly, but I've found it difficult to escape until I addressed the root in my relationship with my mother. I think that has happened recently. There have been some positive developments in me. Time will tell.

Thanks for writing.

Cheers,

Garth
 
To this day I am flabbergasted that some women would abuse their own sons. It seems counter-intuitive to the idea that mothers are the primary nurturers.
That is the reason Jaxson that this journey has taken so long... I couldn't put the pieces together. I encountered memories of the things she did over thirty years ago, but I failed to accept how those behaviors traumatized me. They were in fact at the foundation of my trauma and contributed to everything that came later, including being sexually abused by neighbors. I was too frightened of her to tell her what was happening, and I was longing for contact since home was not a safe place. I was the perfect target for a perpetrator. So, it is amazing to accept that the woman who so much wanted a baby and worked so hard during pregnancy to have a healthy baby, was so damaged that she harmed that baby almost from the beginning of his, MY life. So I'm left spending a lifetime coming to terms with it all... I can explain it all, interpret the basis of her disfunction but none of that diminishes the impact of the trauma on that little boy. I'm still working the claim a life not burdened by the trauma. That is what I'm doing here, gratefully.
 
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