Archive for July 8th, 2008

Microscopic view (c) Lynda BernhardtWhen I confronted my abuser, I did not even know that I was doing it. That is probably something that only a person with dissociative identity disorder (DID) can understand.

I had turned down three full scholarships to attend the university that my mother/abuser wanted me to attend. It was a prestigious university that her sibling had been unable to get into, so it mattered to my mother/abuser that I go there. My interest was more in the doors that would open up to me by having a degree from this particular school.

In retrospect, I cannot believe that I turned down a free ride to stay financially dependent upon on my mother/abuser for another three years, but I did. She agreed to “be my scholarship” and pay for all of my bills while I attended this school. However, she reneged right in the middle of finals halfway through my education there.

I started receiving past due notices from my car insurance company. I kept forwarding them to my mother/abuser (as per our arrangement), but she did not pay them. I received an insurance cancellation notice right in the middle of finals.

I called my mother to ask WTF? I cannot remember specifically what she said, but it triggered Irate (my “rage alter”). Irate took over as my host personality sat back in horror and amazement. Irate b@#$%ed that woman up one side and down the other, ending it with saying, “You already f#$%ed me as a child. You are NOT going to f#$% me as an adult!!!!!” My mother/abuser hung up on me.

My host personality was a walking doormat. The “me” that most people knew was extremely passive and had a hard time standing up for herself, even in simple situations. The conversation had to have blown my mother/abuser out of the water.

Years later, my mother/abuser wrote a “book” about her life that included this situation. I put the word “book” in quotes because it was nothing more than a bunch of ramblings by an insane woman. That book is Exhibit A in my accusation against anyone who did nothing to intervene at a mentally ill woman parenting two children.

Anyhow, my mother’s account of that day is as follows: I telephoned her out of the blue and “was nasty to her.” She hung up on me. Then, she got out a gun, loaded it, and sat on the stairs debating whether to blow her head off. Ultimately, she decided not to do it.

That is how I found out about this – through reading her insane book. I have since asked her if she remembers why I “was nasty to her,” and she said, “No.”

Clearly, that moment between us was deeply significant. For the first time, I confronted her for all that she did to me in childhood. After I did, she was hit with the guilt and shame of what she did, which is evidenced by her first reaction being to commit suicide.

Ultimately, we both shoved it all back deep down inside again. I stayed angry at my mother/abuser for months and refused to see her. This was right before Christmas. I refused to come home, as did my sister, who was still angry with our mother/abuser for something she pulled on her over Thanksgiving. That was the first Christmas that my mother/abuser spent alone, probably ever.

By February, our mother/abuser came to visit (she owned the townhouse where my sister and I were living), and she “forced” a reconciliation of sorts. My sister and I reacted by taking complete advantage of this. We ran up her credit card like nobody’s business. Then, we went back to denial of what had transpired between us.

Related Topic:

How to Decide Whether to Confront Abuser After Child Abuse

Photo credit: Lynda Bernhardt


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