Search This Blog


FAMILY VIOLENCE isn’t one act committed by one person. Communities, Governments, and friends can all be contributors to Family Violence. It wasn’t until 1983 that Canadian law outlawed marital rape [1]. “Family violence is more than just beating a partner or child. It’s the abuse of power to harm or control a person who was or is a family member.”[2] The Alberta Government now recognizes NOVEMBER AS FAMILY VIOLENCE PREVENTION MONTH which replicates a campaign that was started in Hinton in 1986 [3]. So for the month of November we’ll be posting stories that hopefully help identify family violence so that communities are able to recognize there contribution to violence and find ways to end the abuse.

Monday, 14 November 2011

How My Mother Shows Her “Love”

My mother says she loves me, more than anything else in the world, more than even herself.

Over the years, she’s shown just how much she loves me by:

repeatedly telling me that I am fat, and that even though I might not like to hear it, she needs to say it because she’s concerned about my health;
repeatedly telling me that “boys don’t like girls who are so stubborn and opinionated”, and that I need to “tone it down” if I ever wanted to find someone;
expressing how surprised she was to find that my life was full of loving friends who actually loved me just the way I was;
suggesting that I drop out of university so I could be a better wife to my husband (which revealed to me that the entire lifetime of stressing the importance of education turned out to just be her back-up plan for me in case I couldn’t find a man);
asking, when I told her my marriage was ending, what I did wrong;
telling me that my marriage ended because “you’re too much like your father, there’s something wrong with your personality”;
telling me that I was cruel for not speaking to her for a year, which I did to protect my own mental health as a result of the extremely hurtful things she said to/about me when I ended my marriage;
telling me that the reason she had me was because she thought it would make my father hang around the house more often (for those wondering, this did not work);
threatening suicide when I didn’t do what she wanted;
excusing every abusive word and behaviour under “I say/do this because I love you.”

People ask me what my family thinks about me being in an interracial relationship (I’m Asian, my partners have always happened to be White). I tell them my mother is just relieved that anybody wants to be with me. People laugh, but it’s not a joke.

In my life, I recall my mother slapping me in the face twice; those were the only instances where it got physical.

But the emotional and psychological blows were constant.

Too often, I find myself disturbed by the internalized version of her that lives inside my head; the voice that tells me that I shouldn’t be surprised to be treated poorly; that my needs and wants should come after those of others; that I am “lucky” that people put up with me.

This is how my mother shows how much she “loves” me.

No comments:

Post a Comment