Emotional Abuse is more painful than Physical

   Posted by: Janahan Balasingham   in Experience, Personal, Relationships

Why do parents believe that since they gave birth to you, they have complete control over everything you do? How do you make them understand that we have our own mind and want to live our life the way we choose instead of how they deem is the right path?

When I came to Sri Lanka, I had a warm welcome by my mother. For a month or so, it was a peaceful time period for me to settle down. She was caring and gave me money whenever I asked her. Only argument we had was about letting me have some space. She didn’t understand the concept that as an adult, I need my space and she can’t just come into the room as she wants to. I explained to her calmly and believed she understood my point of view.

But as time went on, things started to change. Mom started to become more and more controlling in every aspect. From my choice in soap to what I wear to when I sleep, she started to demand I do it her way. Or else we end up having an argument. It’s always either her way or no way. I lived on my own for a long time now and I like that freedom. I find it very hard to give that control to someone else even if it happens to my mother. I know my sister faced the same situation in the past when she returned and lived with her. I advised my sister to remain calm so I chose not to be a hypocrite and tried my best to remain calm and explained to her not to be so intrusive and not control me. She refuses to listen to my point and then started up again on the personal space argument which I thought she understood. Apparently not.

A couple of weeks ago, we had such an argument that turned really bad. It started off with one of her friend coming over to meet her. Her friend mentioned that she was searching for a bride for her son. After she left, my mom started on me about finding me a bride. This was basically a competition for my mom to get her son married before her friend did. It was obvious from how she pretended that I returned from UK because I didn’t like it there and I was homesick (her friend’s son is still in UK). I personally hate these facades. But I chose not to say anything at that time. I however couldn’t just sit back and let my mom start making plans on whom I should marry and when. So when I refused, my mom started on how her friend has a son that does everything as his mom wants him to but I’m not being the same way. Is it wrong to want freedom on making choices in my own life? Should I do as my mother wishes me to because she feels she knows what’s right for me over my own thinking? I know I won’t be happy being married especially now. I refuse to put another woman in that situation to make her suffer which will increase my guilt. My mom thinks if I get married, there will be someone to feed me (that seems to be her only concern to have me married). She said that if she doesn’t feed me, I won’t eat (told her she can stop cooking if she wants and I can get it from a restaurant like I did in UK). I stood my ground and refused her argument on getting married.

Then came a backlash of all the old arguments. It was like I went back through time and fell back in the same pit of hell I lived through as a teenager. Once again I was being compared to my father and his failures. Every single mistake I’ve made in my life that my mom knows about was thrown back in my face. I thought I had moved on from all that and grown up but it really hurt when your mother is the one throwing it in your face and calling you a failure. She even said that I will end up like my father messing up my work and drinking. So she wants me to get married and the wife will be like her who will look after me when I fail. Seriously? She thinks I’m going to end up like my father so she wants to put some other woman through the life she lived? So according to her, there’s no concern about the woman I’m marrying as long as I have someone to abuse like my father did?

It ended with blackmail. She said that if I refuse to do as she says and do as I want, then she will do as she wants as well. She wants to leave and go to live in some temple far away without having to worry about me or my sister (she wants my sister to get back with her ex-husband and me not supporting that view is also my fault). She thinks since we are not doing as she wants, that she is not needed and she should leave. So I’m left with either marry as she wants me to or let her leave and live in some temple. Is this really a choice a mother can give her child?

Honestly I refuse to go down any path my father did and I wanted to keep my mom happy. However I know I cannot make a commitment to some stranger and let that person suffer while I work on sorting out my life. I refuse to be the cause of some poor woman’s pain and suffering. But this emotional abuse by my mother is really taking a toll on me. Shouldn’t a mother think highly of her children? Instead I have a mother constantly telling me that I’m a failure and I am going to fail in end as well unless I do exactly how she wants me to. And the blackmail is really a low blow. I can’t put someone else in suffering just to please my mother. But the result is her not being happy which weighs on the guilt for me.

Maybe I may end up like my father by turning towards the bottle if I want to not lose my mind and live through the abuse. Or I’ll have to tune out my mother just like I did with my father so I feel no emotions towards what she says and won’t feel guilt over not making her happy. Right now it’s just emotional abuse just like I used to feel when I was a child. Only back then I didn’t know that much difference. Now I know that there’s a free world where I lived independently and I yearn to live in that world once again. But that means abandoning my mother which I can’t do.

Funny side of this story was, last year while I was mostly in bed rest letting Emma look after me, I was thinking that getting married to her would not be such a bad thing as she knew how I feel and gives me the space I need. If the visa issue didn’t exist, I may have done it. I didn’t want to do it with a visa situation because one day in the future, the question of whether the marriage was because of the visa requirement may arise. But after coming home, my head is screwed back into not marrying mode once again. I’m having enough trouble at home that I can’t add more into the mix.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, September 26th, 2012 at 8:40 am and is filed under Experience, Personal, Relationships. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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