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When You Have Conflicting Feelings About an Abusive Parent

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It was recently discovered that my mom has a mass under her heart, and while I feel like I should be scared and worried out of my mind, I’m more conflicted than anything.

I mean, it’s not like she ever acted like she cared about me. I can’t even tell you the amount of times she kicked me out of the house as a kid and as a younger teen or begin to explain the ways she emotionally abused and manipulated me over and over again. Now, 16, living away from her for almost a year with little to no contact between us, this comes up and I don’t know what to do.

She’s my mom. I love her. But what she’s done and what she still continues to do hurts. Bad.

On one hand, I can’t imagine what it would be like to lose her, but on another, haven’t I already? Would anything really change? We don’t talk, we don’t spend time together. Sometimes I forget she exists and while that sounds bad, it’s just the truth. Our mother-daughter relationship is non-existent. That’s just the way it is.

So how should I feel? Should I forget the past and act like nothing ever happened?

Truth is, I don’t have to feel anything. This is going on and I’m sure the fear she has is valid. But the way I feel about her is valid, too. I don’t have to forget everything I’ve been through at the hands of her because this has happened.

In the back of my mind, I hope she’s OK because while she’s never been good to me, she’s good to my younger brother and sister and they shouldn’t have to lose her like this.

As for me? I’m going to be there for them for emotional support. I’m going to listen to their fears and their worries and I’m going to offer the advice that I can. But under no circumstances am I required to feel a certain way about it and if you’re in a similar situation, neither are you.

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Getty image via Kerkez

Originally published: June 16, 2018
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