Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Shame and Tears Remembered

Oh how I wish I was better at hiding my tears. I cry when I'm sad, when I'm frustrated, when I'm angry. And I don't do a very good job of holding them in. Sometimes, it's really embarrassing. Growing up in our family, if we cried because of things that were going on with us personally and not what was effecting our mom, we were selfish, self-absorbed, not thinking about anyone else (i.e., mom’s current crisis of the moment). My dad perpetuated those feelings by making everything about my mom's crises. There was one night that my mom was drinking...and she was a very depressed and angry drunk and would typically start in on how horrible of a mother she was. I loved her very much, and hated to hear her talk about herself that way. So I would start telling her, through my tears, that that was simply not true, she was a good mother. I remember my father sending me to my room. I went upstairs and laid on my bed and cried into my pillow. When my dad came up to see me a few minutes later, it wasn't to comfort or console me, it was to admonish me for crying and further upsetting my mother, because she didn't need any additional upset. There were no safe adults in my household. I was 10 at the time. I still feel so much shame when I cry in front of other people.

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