A Daughter Speaks Out Against Her Abusive Mother

6 minutes

I have parents, yet I grew up as an unwanted person. I am staying but I do not belong.

My childhood is terrible. My mother was so much physically and verbally abusive and my dad was always busy.

My mother never loved me. All she did was to hate me to my guts ever since I was born. She wanted a male child.

Nobody believed me, not my father, my aunts, friends, NOBODY!

I wish I was born in a different family


It was heart wrenching to hear these words from a 30yr old working woman who came to me about a month back. I could sense a great amount of anger in her for her mother as if trying to say, ‘It’s because of you that I wasted so many years feeling worthless, you stole those years from me’.

Carrying so much hurt and pain for her lost childhood and the dark shadows loomed large on her present as well. I share a message from her with her permission, as she wants to contribute from her story to help others going through similar trauma because she knows what’s it like to be torn down.

In her words:

Till about one year back, I was not even aware what was happening to me. I knew something was drastically wrong, I felt so far away from real world seeing my friends with happy families, confident, getting married and having kids. Whereas I constantly felt guilty for not having a relationship, actually, I am too scared to be in one. 

For 29 years, I have considered myself so unlovable telling myself, “Why the hell would anyone care about me?”

My life seemed like an unsolved puzzle with, I don’t even know how many, pieces scattered all over. In my efforts to find myself, I came across this book, “Will I be good enough? Healing of daughters of Narcissistic mothers” by Dr. Karyl Mcbride. It was an eye opener bringing me face to face with the ugly truth, that I have an abusive mother.

About being raised by an abusive mother, Dr. Mcbride writes,

“There is the feeling, which directly relates to never having been able to please your mother, of never being quite good enough in relationship, career and life in general. Daughters of narcissistic mothers seem to flounder in life, struggling with chronic feelings of inadequacy and emptiness, knowing there is something wrong but not understanding what that something might be. For them, life thus becomes an agony of self-doubt.”

It was shocking, I couldn’t believe but as I kept reading I could find some of the pieces falling into place. Although painful, I was reliving many past memories, understanding how this lethal emotional, verbal and physical abuse killed my confidence, creativity and individuality.

Although I was able to get some answers, but I was finding it difficult to make sense of so many others. That’s when I sought professional help and I clearly see it helping me find my way out of this maze.

Sharing with you some of the memories:

As a child, she would hit me a lot, lock me in the dark kitchen for any of my mistakes. If I fell wounded, instead of caring, she would express her disgust at how clumsy I am. I remember blaming myself, feeling scared to do anything to upset her, fearing rejection.

childhood scars
Image Source: Linked

As a teenager, I felt unworthy because of innumerable comparisons with friends and cousins, as a result, used to stay away from them. She wouldn’t cook healthy meals, rather order me to prepare myself. I was unhealthy and had many adjustment problems in school. I was scared to talk to boys.

Image Source: Linked

My college became my refuge. I had many friends. It is here, I realized my family is different from others, especially mother. She never hugged or kissed me, unlike my friends. She would call me ugly and fat, I believed her but now I realize I was not and I am not…….

She created a rift between me and father, and he also abandoned me.

I suffered depression after college, as I was not allowed to work and meet any of my friends. The biggest irony is that she wanted to get rid of me by getting me married, yet she would find worst of the proposals. In fact, she didn’t realize that I never needed her more than this time.

Image Source:Linked

I came for therapy feeling hopeless and helpless thinking, ‘there was no one to tell and nowhere to hide, I kept the pain to myself while a part in me died.’ But here, I found the comfort, safety and someone understanding whom I could trust and share my pain.

Counseling is helping me

  • take the blame of my shoulders which is a huge respite, and grieving over losses is helping me bring that peace in me.
  • I had major anger issues as that is the only emotion I had seen all my life, here I am understanding the anger in me as a hot pot of buried, putrefying emotions and its healthy expression, I realized that in many situations my anger was because of sadness. I really connected well with the ‘trigger-target’ concept in anger management and have started applying it.  
  • I am getting to see a ‘real me’ wherein I have started acknowledging my strengths and it is boosting my confidence.
  • I am getting to terms with so many ‘why’s’ in me, gradually leading to acceptance. All this is giving a different meaning to understand and improve my relationships.

Nowadays, I often hear myself saying:

                               I want to change because I want to live!

Strained relationships at home are one of the primary causes of stress and disappointment in life. If you have trouble with someone at home, don’t keep your worries to yourself. Reach out to YourDOST experts, and avail help and support immediately. We are here to help.

Seema Bindal

Seema is your special friend at YourDOST who can handled issues related to stress, anxiety, depression, disability, relationships, study skills, and anger. She is a Ph.D in Biochemistry from University of Delhi and has worked with the Indian Institute of Sciences (Bangalore) for couple of years. It was her strong desire to understand and help self and others that led her to begin this interesting journey in the field of Counselling. Since last 6 years, she has been expanding on the skill sets, working on field to add to her practical experience. She has Diploma in Counselling Skills (Banjara Academy, Bangalore) and Certification in Counselling Children and Teenagers (Prerana Academy, Bangalore). She is currently pursuing Masters in Counselling and Psychotherapy (KUVEMPU). She has attended CBT and Life Skills (Adolescents) training from NIMHANS.