Another highly triggering encounter with my mother (family of origin)

TRIGGER WARNING: Self harm

I had a truly awful day yesterday (Tuesday), which culminated in another major fight with my mother.  Once again, she managed to upset me when I went over to her house around lunchtime.  I only went because I wanted to see the cats and she said she had some vegetables from her allotment that she wanted to give me.  Truth be told, I wasn’t in a good frame of mind even prior to going over there and I’d been drinking due to my anxiety about going out in Grantham.  I’m even more self-conscious now that the weather is warm and I cannot cover my hideous body in clothing.  I feel like people in Grantham are staring a hole in me whenever I go out and I’m sure they make horrible comments that I don’t hear because I keep my headphones on.  I’ve not been this self-conscious about being transgender since my early transition days almost 6 years ago.

I went to an addiction on drop in centre prior to going to my mum’s.  They couldn’t do much to help, but I just needed to talk to someone.  The man I spoke to even suggested that Lincolnshire isn’t really the place for someone like me to make friends,  as the natives are generally not very tolerant and there isn’t much support here.  Quite a few people have actually told me that, except for my mum.  Alcohol addiction isn’t my problem anyway, nor is it the cause of my problems.  I wouldn’t drink at all if I weren’t in the situation I’m in now.  Treating an addiction I don’t really have will do nothing to treat the underlying pain and anxiety that leads me to abuse alcohol (and other drugs in the past) in the first place.

Anyway, I walked over there fairly drunk and the first thing I noticed is that my mum quickly ushered me into the back garden, most likely because her husband didn’t want me there, as I’m sure she’s told him what a monster I am.  Madge came up to me while I was outside and my mum was still in the kitchen.  When my mum came out with coffee, we almost instantly started arguing about Grantham.   I don’t remember exactly what she said to set me off, but it was along the lines of “You’re never liked anywhere you’ve lived” in her cold and dismissive tone of voice.  She then went on to say that she knew of 2 other transgender women in Grantham and they seemed happy enough.  I went into defensive mode, as I felt like she was doubting me and her claim that I’ve never liked anywhere I’ve lived is completely untrue and insulting.  She still seems to be under the impression that the problem is solely me, not Grantham.   I had a meltdown and told her to “fuck off”, before leaving.  I can never seem to get through to her and she never makes any effort to listen’ it’s always the same gaslighting and guilt trips that don’t work on me anymore because I literally feel nothing when it comes to her.

I was still fairly drunk as I walked home as quickly as possible, but I ran into several teenagers from the local college who gave me funny looks.  I was more concerned with getting home and holding back the flood of tears that would have caused me further embarrassment than just being the freak that I am, without crying in public.

I drank more when I got home and resorted to cutting again, before passing out on my bed.  My arm is a mess, but that’s the least of my concerns right now.  They’re just battle scars caused by the battles going on inside my head which will seemingly never be won while I’m still breathing.  I can’t take this shit with my mother anymore as it invokes too many painful memories and I’m clearly never going to get the answers that I need in order to try to have any kind of relationship with her, so I give up.   We clearly can’t even be in the same room together for more than a few minutes and I know that’s my fault, as I just can’t stand how cold and dismissive she is.

Fortunately, my best friend called me last night and she helped me a lot.  I know she’s going through a lot of her own shit, so I was even more grateful to hear from her.  It’s scary to think that I have no family, just a a few strangers that I’m biologically related to.  One of my followers used the term “Family of Origin” which applies to those I’m biologically related to.  The only true family I’ve ever had was my ex-wife, her brother and her mother in South Florida, all of whom I still miss.

I’ve also realised that I probably should have just stayed in Rochester and continued to try to push for supportive housing, especially as I’m dealing with a new case manager there now who seems to be more on the ball and she specialises in LGBT.  I’ve realised that I’m going to be lonely and that I probably won’t fit in anywhere, so it’s best to just be as far away from my family of origin and my ‘past life’ as possible.  The new care manager is still trying to push for me to get housed, so if that happens I’ll most likely return to a place that I didn’t like, but I hated it far less than here.

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13 Responses to Another highly triggering encounter with my mother (family of origin)

  1. Venusian Cenobite says:

    Cut off the bond. You didnt choose her in the first place

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sour Girl says:

      I’m trying to. I just miss the cats I need her out of my life forever though.

      Thank you for reading this garbage and commenting

      Liked by 1 person

      • Venusian Cenobite says:

        Well that is a problem. But you can attempt a malefic scheme find similar cats ( i know they dont look the same) and change them with your moms then you can take care of your beloved cats. I dont see another way around it. I am sorry if my comment was harsh but let s say i can relate even if our experiences are different since anxiety and dark feels usually invade me after an encounter with that side of the family. Sorry for my following sexist/metaphor comment: your entries give me hardons hehe since i can relate to most of the unease we get from our daily lives. I would love a drink rn

        Like

      • Sour Girl says:

        Umm….so I’m a bit confused by this, because most of your comment seemed very supportive, but then I read the last part and it’s creeped me out. I don’t understand why my posts have that effect on you as it’s not like I post pictures of myself semi naked looking for male attention. Are you attracted to someone else in pain or something? Just so I can understand

        Liked by 1 person

      • Venusian Cenobite says:

        I see myself in your writing. And at the same time i know we are different people and we have different lives. Yeah i know my language sucks. I cant help it and i cant explain it. But i am sure it is a form of attraction.

        Like

      • Sour Girl says:

        You don’t know what I look like though. If you did, I’m sure you’d be repulsed, not attracted. Where are you from? I’m sure you live way too far away to buy me a drink anyway, but I guess it’s the thought that counts. I’m an absolute train wreck of a human being. If you are similar to me, well let’s just say I wouldn’t wish that kind of suffering on you.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Venusian Cenobite says:

        Emm i dont know about what would happen in that case. The sure thing for me is that pictures are different from how a person feels like when interacting in real time and face to face. Also it depends on how the social/personality changes while knowing each other with time. Anyways too many factors so i dont know. Adding to that i deal with a strong inner humiliating voice. So i dont know if they are right or not. I dont know if in real life i should believe that i repulse others as well by my looks. And to be honest i try to not focus on that. I try to distanciate myself from my own story. Result would be: ups and downs. I am from Morocco. If i had a visa i would definitely buy you a drink for a first meet up hehe getting one is hard here. Emm i just like you i guess even if you are a train wreck. Oh thanks for that. Anyways i carry my own death wish. May be one day we would make it together… hehe make it out of this existence. I would prefer a quick painless one lol

        Like

  2. It gets way worse before it gets better when struggling to come to terms with the legacy of emotional abuse and neglect – and/or any other kinds of abuse, bullying, etc. All trauna is valid – but don’t be too hard on yourself. It’s the most human thing in the world to want your parents to have been parents and to let go of the idea that if you could just say or do the right thing, they suddenly would be. It’s the hardest thing, because kids naturally will have to come up with some explanation for why their loved one isn’t being loving…and usually the only one they can comprehend (oft reinforced overtly by the parent) is that there is something about *them* that is unlovable. Those hooks sink deep. Just having a name and an alternate story (“maybe I was neglected and emotionally abused instead of just stupid/selfish/unworthy”) isn’t a magic bullet. Even having validation from others that your experiences (in Grantham and elsewhere) are “real” isn’t enough. Of course you’ll have meltdowns and trauma responses, even with greater understanding. You’re human. So, give yourself a break. You shoved yourself back into trigger central and it was too much, too soon. That’s ok. I think all trauma survivors have been there and done that (usually enough we even confuse ourselves why we keep doing it to ourselves.) Be kind to yourself and hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sour Girl says:

      It’s her gaslighting and dismissiveness that I can’t stand. She cannot relate to me at all or with how much a place like this would be a nightmare for anyone with my issues or my identity. “trigger central” is a good way of describing this god-awful town. It’s not just my mum and all that shit. It’s t he fact that this town is populated by nothing but families and their obnoxious kids and chavvy teenagers that are constantly in the vicinity of my flat and make me feel like a prisoner most of the time, as I can’t go out. Put it this way, you may have followed me this time last year, when I was staying at an Airbnb shared home in one of the roughest parts of Rochester NY. I felt less uncomfortable THERE than I do here and I was able to go out more in a place that was statistically dangerous / high crime. I don’t want to see my mum ever again. She died a long time ago as far as any love I had for her.

      Like

      • Going no contact with her does seem like the best option. Just…it’s usually a process. It takes a few (sometimes more than a few) tries to stick. And, the world and the lack of social services being what they are, not everybody has the financial, legal and other resources to stay fully no contact with an abuser. (Gaslighting is abuse, remember that. It might help to literally just substitute ‘abuse’ in your head everytime you want to just say ‘gaslighting’ so you don’t allow yourself to mentally downplay its impact.) If you can go fully NC starting now, great. But, if you struggle for a bit with that for practical reasons, don’t berate yourself for it. Remember that part about being human and how hard it is to not let yourself get sucked back in to the self-destructive narrative your family made you their scapegoat star in. If you can genuinely go NC immediately, great. If not…that’s the norm. Gaslighters and emotional abusers no just how to yank our hooks, especially the ones they put there. She’ll say something or text something that gets through your emotional armor to make herself look better. It’s par for the course. And, realistically, it’ll probably keep working for awhile. You’ll respond, because the hooks run deep. It’s normal, it sucks, and eventually it’ll get easier. But, don’t expect perfection from yourself right now. She has decades of experience getting to you. No human alive can just shrug it off immediately. So, go as NC as you can, build little mental tricks like repeating “abuse” instead of words your brain can downplay like “gaslighting” or “dismissal” and read some books on surviving childhood abuse/neglect and recognizing emotional flashbacks. (Judith Lewis Herman and Peter Levine have some that are usually available online or in e-book form from the library, so no peopling required once you download the app). But, above all, keep being kind to yourself when you are triggered. Don’t put impossible demands on yourself for how to suddenly get over a lifetime in a few weeks. Beating yourself up for letting your family of origin get to you is just tugging on the same abusive hooks your family of origin set, and they will yank enough. No need to give them the extra inch while they do. Hugs.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Sour Girl says:

        I want to go no contact and probably will. The only hold she has on me (and it’s a powerful one) is the cats, because she knows how much I love them and how much they mean to me.. But they’re her cats. The reality is that I’ll miss them more than they;ll miss me. Regardless of our differences, she’s a good cat mother and she loves Lily and Madge. I have to let go, because I’ve no intention of ever returning to this fucking town.

        Like

      • Hugs. I am genuinely hoping you get supportive housing. The U.S. kind of sucks…but so does the U.K. right now and if both are going to suck, an ocean between you and your family of origin seems like a good reason to return to Rochester. I will keep my fingers and toes crossed the system comes through for you. And, well, trauma work is rough, especially doing it alone. I had years of that. I’ve said before that I don’t always have my own safety mask firmly enough affixed to be a “during the immediate” crisis lifeline. I try to be realistic about my own emotional capacity so I don’t accidentally let someone down when I disappear for a bit dealing with my own stuff. But, I definitely know how rough trauma and childhood stuff is, so if you could use a little validation/reality affirmation occasionally that “yeah, things do suck for the marginalized, the system is broken and even knowing that doesn’t make it stop hurting”, I’m happy to offer that additional external validation. It’s not much, but hopefully it helps to be believed. Gaslighting messes with a person…

        Liked by 1 person

      • Sour Girl says:

        Up until 6 months ago, I used to think that the UK was slightly better off in terms of how it is to be marginalised in either country, but I think both countries are bad right bow, but perhaps the UK is worse because of the imminent threat of Brexit and the far right having far more political influence right now. Our cities are still very diverse and not bad at all, but the small towns here are generally awful, oppressive and full of the kind of people you’d want to avoid.

        I will return to Rochester if my care manager comes up with a plan, because I was somewhat better off there with the help I was getting and with the freedom I had to ride my bike and go out fairly freely even at weekends.

        Thank you for your kind words and validation. Of course, I know you don’t know both sides of the story. I’m not a nice person and I regret telling my mum to fuck off the other day, but she pushes my buttons like no one else can / has.

        Like

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