"You don't grow up missing what you never had, but throughout life there is hovering over you an inescapable longing for something you never had." Susan Sontag
"A fatherless girl thinks all things are possible and nothing safe." Mary Gordon
When I hear a daughter speak lovingly or thankfully for their mother; I feel so cheated.
It is as if a huge part of living was kept from me.
What I didn't know, was that when I worked through the abuse - love wasn't behind the pain. There really is no answer or conclusion, just the empty space.
I know this may sound weird, like how would there be love behind abuse.
Or even more parents.
I feel cheated on not only the live relationships that were underlined with abuse, but in the natural grief when they pass.
It is like we are parentless in our youth and then again in our adult lives.
Estrangement is a very awkward land.
Abuse, even more so.
Abuse teaches us the opposite of love.
And, so when the time comes to grieve, there is nothing to grieve.
The naturalness of wanting to be near, closer, sharing, caring, is replaced with distance.
When raised on abused love, you are left in the world upside down and backwards.
First you have to get yourself right before you can love correctly.
This new love doesn't flow naturally.
It comes with baggage of PTSD and anxiety and codependency to name a few.
Love that is free and open takes struggle to make it so.
Although, the more I am loving of self and free to be me, the more I can at the very least bring in neutral energy. Love without expectations or needs from me.
I am reading a book by Anderson Cooper and Gloria Vanderbilt - "The Rainbow Comes and Goes."
He writes, "It's the kind of conversation I think many parents and their grown children would like to have, and it has made this past year the most valuable of my life. By breaking down the walls of silence that existed between us, I have come to understand my mom and myself in ways I never imagined."
"I know now that it's never too late to change the relationship you have with someone important in your life; a parent, a child, a lover a friend. All it takes is a willingness to be honest and to shed the old skin, to let go of the long-standing assumptions and slights you still cling to." Anderson
This dream or idea is also a place where there will be no comfort. For rarely, do the abusers get honest.
It isn't about the slights I have experienced; but the lack of honesty that permeates the environment within abusive homes.
How can there be a healing conversation when honesty is absent?
I believe it would be easier to join a conversation where beliefs and thoughts were exchanged truthfully...than to place any hope in a conversation where my honesty isn't welcome and their's is withheld.
I often feel it is my fault for demanding, needing, and wanting honesty.
That I am asking for the impossible.
Imagine love where honesty is missing?
Is that love?
Perhaps the greatest loss in abusive homes is our lack of trust in truth.
Who are you without your whole truths?
The last conversation I had with my mother, I wasn't allowed to talk about her husband (my abuser) and her religion (the one that made his sins disappear). Which is why it was our last.
She wanted to acknowledge it without acknowledging it.
To bring it in; but not to own it.
Another great loss, is that there is no place to dialogue it out.
There is no closure or place to try and understand.
Another vast vacuum where we are made to be alone.
Here is what is weird.
We are alone in the midst of abuse and then alone when we set boundaries.
Alone seems to be our relationships with our family of origin in an abusive home.
I would be just as alone inside, as I am outside.
Good to know.
What I would want the most is an honest conversation - deep and vast with boundless courage to understand all the nuances of abuse. To have no boundaries into which we explore.
I believe I have done this.
The depth of understanding ourselves, is how deep we can go with another.
Once you go deep, you can no longer live on the surface of life.
And, love has to be deep enough to hold all truths!