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#209743 - 03/09/08 09:00 PM My Mom
rehpotsirhcs Offline

Registered: 10/11/07
Posts: 204
My mom came into my room and asked me, "Am I a bad mom"? She always gets emotional and upset when I try to talk to her about sexual abuse stuff. I don't think she understands how uncomfortable it makes me to be around someone who is crying or upset. And I don't know how to answer her question, "Am I a bad mom?"

I am asking you guys because I think I need a mother's perspective on this or at least a woman who understands emotions. Can anyone tell me how to calm my mom down when I talk about this stuff or the right thing to say to help her feel less guilty?

#209748 - 03/09/08 09:11 PM Re: My Mom [Re: rehpotsirhcs]
Freedom49 Offline

Registered: 12/31/07
Posts: 2724
Loc: Washington State
I am not a mom but I am a dad and I married a mom. And I stayed at a holiday inn express. Never mind,
Some Moms always want it to be about them. When I told my mom a little about my dad immediately she went to how it affect her and made her feel. Nothing about how I am or are you ok or did he hurt you. I think it is nomal for someone to immediately react with how does it affec me. If you think she was a bad mom still do you really need to tell her that? Will it help you? Her?
I would just tell her everyone makes mistakes. I think maybe you made some mistakes in the way you handled my pain but now you can help me by.............. and then tell her what you need from her. She will be more receptive to your suggestions. You have to live with this woman and she is your mother. So your not letting her off the hook but you are putting her in a place where she will be receptive to your requests. Then if you can give her a hug. Moms are suckers for hugs from their kids.

Edited by Freedom49 (03/10/08 01:23 AM)

#209751 - 03/09/08 09:30 PM Re: My Mom [Re: Freedom49]
MemoryVault Offline

Registered: 03/02/07
Posts: 693
Loc: NJ
Can anyone tell me how to calm my mom down when I talk about this stuff or the right thing to say to help her feel less guilty?

Hey, Chris --

This may sound cold, but it's one of the most important things I've learned: You have to let her feel what she's feeling. You can offer support (if you're still being true to yourself), you can offer your perspective if you think she's being too hard on herself. But you can't stop her from feeling guilty. Maybe she needs to feel that way now--maybe that's part of her growing up and re-thinking how the family has worked.

It's also possible that she's trying to get you to say it's okay and there was nothing wrong. You don't have to say that.

It's not easy--letting someone you love feel bad and not trying to make it okay. It's not easy saying what you need to say--what needs to be said--and not watering it down to make it harmless. But telling the truth isn't mean. In the long run, that's what love is. Telling people what they want to hear right now isn't love--it's politics.

Say what you need to say! She'll be all right--and someday, glad that you did.


#209805 - 03/10/08 01:13 AM Re: My Mom [Re: MemoryVault]
Lou Offline

Registered: 11/11/07
Posts: 100
Hi Chris,

As a mother myself, I disagree with the comment about mothers always wanting it to be about them.

Since there was not CSA in our family, I am certainly no expert on this topic, but I also know that I have probably asked my own now grown children this very same thing at least a few times in my/their lives.

I have always tried very hard to keep the lines of communication between me and my children open and have tried to enforce upon them that there is nothing that I am not willing to listen to or to discuss with them. And believe you me, when they were angry teenagers over the divorce between their father and me and his eventual suicide....there were plenty of times that I am sure that in their eyes, I was not a good mother. It was not always easy to hear from them that they wished I had died instead of him....but if I didn't stick by their side....who was going to?

As for me, if I were to ask my kids if they thought I was a bad mom, I would be asking for their input in order to make our relationship better. In other words, what can or what do I need to do to make it better? As mom's we all know that we have made mistakes in life and have not always been the best that we probably could have been, but we did not take classes when I was in school in how to be a good parent. Most of us parent by example and let's face it, sometimes our examples have not always been the healthiest.

I personally would not be looking for my children to calm me down or to try to take away my guilt. My feelings are my feelings just the same as my children's feelings are their feelings, there is no right or no wrong. It is up to me to deal with my feelings and if there are tears and guilt, so be it....for me, those are the very things that I need to feel in order to change and deal with the issues in life that I need to deal with, no matter how ugly they might be.

I would hope that if I asked my children this very question that they would feel that they could give me their honest opinion in a respectful way and that only through this complete honesty, no matter how much it hurts, can the healing begin. Sometimes we don't like to hear what is said, but sometimes it needs to be said.

I personally don't view getting emotional and upset as a bad thing, but rather what needs to happen to move on.

I hope this helps you just a little.

Best of luck to you.

#209878 - 03/10/08 01:04 PM Re: My Mom [Re: Lou]
JustScott Offline
Greeter Emeritus

Registered: 01/28/08
Posts: 2614
Loc: Central PA
Hey Chris,

That is a really tough place to be. My mom is the same way, and it's the reason she still doesn't know anything about the abuse in my life.

I usually just give her a hug and tell her I love her. That's all I've been able to do when she's upset or feeling bad about something. I love my mom, but truth is, I'm mad at my mother, because talking to her about anything emotional or negative always put her in that "I'm a bad mom" mode, so I never had anywhere to go about what was going on in my life.

I think the fact that she is coming to you, says she wants to talk to you. Which I think is awesome. She wants to find a way to help you. That's what it says to me anyway. I think she's hurting for you. She knows your in pain and doesn't know what to do.

I wish I had a surefire way to make it all better for you.

Hang in there Chris, it does get better.

#209953 - 03/11/08 12:11 AM Re: My Mom [Re: JustScott]
Trish4850 Offline
BoD Liaison Emeritus

Registered: 10/15/05
Posts: 3280
Loc: New Jersey
Hi Chris,

I'm sorry you're having to deal with this on top of everything else. It just goes to show you how much you're willing to take on yourself, when it's not you who bears the burden. Your Mom is feeling the same thing. Guilt that doesn't belong to her. The person who hurt you deserves the shame, the anger, the guilt and every other negative feeling you can think of that caused this whole situation.

I'm afraid you really can't make Mom feel better; she has to work through it herself, just as you do and it sucks in a big way. What you can do though is tell her the truth. Tell her it makes you upset to see her so upset. Ask her to try and hold it together when you talk, BUT if either one of you gets upset, accept it for the natural, overwhelming emotion that it is. Put the brakes on whatever conversation your having, give each other a hug and talk about the latest music on your I-pod.

Your lives are messed up right now. I think a big part of what your Mom is feeling right now is that she just doesn't know what to do or how to make your life better. When you were learning how to walk and fell down, it was easy to pick you up, kiss away your tears and make you giggle again. It's way harder to do that now, but it is all she wants to do. The abuser took away her power to be the mother she wants to be for you.

The mother-child relationship naturally changes as the child grows older; there are rough spots, sometimes really rough, but if the foundation has already been built between you, then you'll figure out a way to make the new relationship work. It'll just take some time.

But Chris, please don't take on more than you should. Yes, your Mom is upset, but it isn't up to you to make it better. The only thing you can do is be straight up with her. If you want to talk to her, great, please do, but do set ground rules. Tell her that if she gets really upset you can't deal with that. She doesn't know what you need Chris; if you tell her, you'll be helping both of you.

ROCK ON.........Trish

If you fall down 10 times, Stand up 11.

#210634 - 03/14/08 11:51 AM Re: My Mom [Re: Trish4850]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA

All I can do here is echo what Trish says. As you and your mother learn to communicate with each other and share your feelings, what will emerge is that NEITHER of you are to blame. This is all the work of the abusers.

Try to remember that even now Moms don't have any experience at all with how to deal with something as terrible as the sexual abuse of their child. It's only natural that she should feel overwhelmed by her feelings of guilt on that account.

But at the same time you do need to have some stability and calm in the room if you are to talk to her. As Trish says, just let her know that. You can just say something like this: "Mom, I know this is hard for you too, but when you get upset like this I feel so uncomfortable I can't talk. Anyway, I have so many problems and worries on my mind there's no way I can answer 'Am I a bad Mom' questions."

Much love,

Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

#215401 - 04/04/08 09:11 PM Re: My Mom [Re: roadrunner]
theresa2469 Offline
New Here

Registered: 04/03/08
Posts: 5
Loc: TX
I am a mom of a child that was molested from 3 family members at the same time. My son was 4 at the time, my husband walked in when or after it happend he later that day commited suicide, at that time i did not know why he did this until a week later my son came to me and told me his dad had walked in the restroom where this was taking place, i was cooking on the grill, they had no fear I was home when it happend. when he told me that day i called the police and child protection services, the police did not believe me because they thought i made up the story due to the 3 guy's was were there when my husband committed suicide they thought i had made up the story so they would get in trouble either way, in other words they thought i was a little looney who wouldnt be after their husband committed suicide and a week later i find out my son was molsted by family members. so the police did nothing child protective service checked my son out and said they couldnt find any phisical signs of abuse but they said he was abused by what he said to nothing was done. I took my son immediatly to counceling to get him help, the first counceler wasnt that good so i took him to another one she was great and got of of my son's anger issues out, every once in a will through the years i have to take him back to deal with issues, it effected his school work(bad grade) other than that he has been a great kid, i do understand the bad grades are from the abuse. My son is 20 now and still hasnt fully told me what happend, what worries me he is still is harming himself he put his finger or object up his rectum(sorry if this is to graphic)he has bleeding due to this, that's the only way i know he is doing this to him i know he hasnt fully dealt with the situationg. I owe a great appreciation to a person that gave me this web site, i have just emailed it to my son. I know i am rambling sorry about that. Now the original question from the OP please be truthfull with your mom, my son and i our close and allways have been since he was born, I think that's my problem i take motherhood seriously and love and support my son fully, My problem is guilt like trish said, i was suspose to protect my son and i didnt, yes i have seen a councelor myself many time's and i will allways feel guilty about this even though i no it's not my fault it's the molesters. This happend 16 yrs ago and there is not a day or time that i look at him that i dont feel guilty, i cannot exspress the weight that is in my heart, dont get me wrong i dont tell my son this or show him how i feel about myself the sitiation is about him not me. If you have question please feel free to ask me, sorry for the spelling and long post. I hope you know people out there care about what has happend to you, like i care about my son.

#215430 - 04/05/08 12:57 AM Re: My Mom [Re: theresa2469]
sabata Offline

Registered: 08/08/06
Posts: 1950
i failed 2nd grade and 6 th grade------quit high school---------------no one batted a eye

#215581 - 04/05/08 05:28 PM Re: My Mom [Re: sabata]
king tut Offline

Registered: 02/13/08
Posts: 2488
Loc: UK
Hi Chris

Mothers are hard, i could never talk to my mother, it would finish her off, she lives off in her own kind of reality i think, i think mothers do mostly make things about themselves, sorry to disagree with the mothers who have posted here, but that's just what i think.

I don't think it would be any good telling her she was a 'bad mother'. But i think you should let her know the places where she let you down, i think she would come to understand that, but also let her know the things that she has done good, even if they are just small things in comparison, that would go a long way too.


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