Posted by: TT | 2012-02-14

How to heal from toxic parents?

Hello CS,
I have struggled with my toxic parents all my life. My parents got married (because I was on the way) and divorced three years later. Mom said it was because dad was cheap and beat her. Dad said it was because mom was a cheater and extravagant spender. Mom and I went to live with my grandmother, dad had me on weekends. They would have terrible fights, even after the breakup. My dad once took all of my moms clothes, threw it in a pile at a wooden pole, tied her to it, poured petrol on it and set it alight. He then put me in the car and was leaving, my mom got herself loose and threw a brick through the back window where I was. The glass shattered in my face. Dad used to have me in the car when he would follow my mom and tell me what a slut she was (I was four). We followed her to her boyfriends house where they had a big fight in the driveway. This was all AFTER the divorce. Mom had several boyfriends, one after the next and they would have intercourse with me in the bed. Those are just a few examples of what i experienced, There''s too many to mention here. When dad was angry at me he would tell me I was just like my mom, and vice versa when she was angry. I was called every name (especially by mom) from stupid to ugly, useless, bitch, and worse. I was always told other kids were better than me and why couldn''t I be like them. I was neglected, abused (sexually by one of moms ex boyfriends, she asked me what I did to lead him on, but now says she doesn''t remember saying that). Anyway, so it goes on and on. I grew up, put myself through university with scholarships and part time work. During this time I paid half of the housing rent. I finally decided to move out and leave my mom. This is when it gets emotionally manipulative. Mom suddenly for the first time tells me she loves me and is proud of me, starts forcing her " motherly love"  and presence into my life. She is a compulsive liar and gambler and comes to me with sob stories all the time, I help her out - only to find she squandered my money at the casino and the loan sharks then look for her debts to be paid by me " in whatever way possible"  (she gave them my contact details). Dad remarries (his own cousin) and has two kids (one is his, a paternity test later proved the other was not) - she has six from previous men. I leave the country (for my own reasons and to get away from it all). All the while I am paying my mothers cost of living (she got fired for stealing and is living with her sister). I give my aunt food and rent money for her. I also give dad money as he was retrenched. Time passes, I marry and arrange for my mom to visit me overseas. I am hoping she has chamged and that she has developed some maternal instincts as she''s aged. She is supposed to be here for 2.5 more months. After two weeks, I saw that there is no change. I am still just the " back up"  plan. She really thinks I owe her! She expects to be spoiled and coddled and treated the way a parent who actually cared for their child deserves to be treated. My husband and I are funding her trip completely and she acts as it it''s something she deserves. She is still a compulsive liar and leech. This is going to be a very hard few months. I know I have to cut her and my father from my life completely. It is sad that i''ll have to do this for a second time in my life but my own mental, physical and financial stability is at stake if I don''t. My extended family won''t understand, they were not raised by them and were only shown what my mom wanted them to see. I pray for the strength, wisdom and courage to do what''s right - whatever " right"  may be.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

It doesnt matter what your extended family think, if they are stupid enough to believe your loser parents --- truly toxic poor excuses for humanity. Ys, cut them out of your life totally. Tell them finally that they have caused you nothing but misery and that they don't deserve anything at all from you, ever again, and shoul leave you alone. Maybe a counsellor could help you to find the strength and skill to keep to this sensible decision.
People like the parents you describe NEVER change ; sometimes, for their own benefit, they might try to preted they hav changed, but should not be believed.
Your mom's suddent pretense of love for you when it suited her, reminds me of an old song, recorded by Fred Astaire, which was supposed to have the longest titke ever : "How could you believe me when I said I loved you, when you know I've been a liar all my life ?"

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

Our users say:
Posted by: TT | 2012-02-15

Thank you all for your words of wisdom and support. I don''t know what i''m going to do yet, but your responses have helped with the conflicting emotions I''ve struggled with for such a long time. Thank you.

Reply to TT
Posted by: Wow | 2012-02-14

Reno, you are wrong. I agree with Maria too. respect is earned.

Don''t let her turn your life upside down again. Despite everything, you made a success of your life and came out an adjusted, respectful human being. You should be so proud of yourself. I don''t even know you and am so proud of you. You are an inspiration.

Change her ticket.

Reply to Wow
Posted by: Romany | 2012-02-14

Agree with Maria 100% on this one.

Reply to Romany
Posted by: View point | 2012-02-14

lt would have been better to have spent the air ticket money on therapy to assist you to find a way forward. Coucelling should lead you to find the answer to what you should do..........

Reply to View point
Posted by: Maria | 2012-02-14

Sorry, I disagree Reno. Respect can be earned, and lost. With this person''s history I see no reason why her daughter should show her respect. Of course it depends on what exactly that means to you. TT can be polite to her mother but she doesn''t have to be treated like a doormat and an ATM.

Reply to Maria
Posted by: Reno | 2012-02-14

Life can be tough! Very tough. Turn to God my dear. The bible requires of you to respect your father and mother. Do exactly that and pray about it.

Reply to Reno
Posted by: Maria | 2012-02-14

Change the date of her plane ticket and send her on her way.

Reply to Maria

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