I’m so frustrated and confused right now.
I’ll set the scene. Yesterday, my parents, my sister, and I went shopping for clothes. My mom and sister tend to have conflicts about what to wear, so I knew there would be an argument. Lo and behold, there was. In summary, this argument was about choosing between two sweaters. I didn’t offer my opinions because I’ve been yelled at for “getting involved” in the past. The only thing I did was accompany my sister when she was in the fitting room. At some point, my dad left the store for a couple of minutes, and my mom was extremely angry about that. My dad said that she could have asked him to stay or texted him or something.
So my dad was yelled at out of nowhere. He yelled some stuff at us. He was upset and decided to drive recklessly through the streets, casually putting at least 4 lives at risk by accelerating a lot and nearly hitting the people in front of us. We were all scared, and I knew the worst thing in that moment would be getting into an accident. Thankfully we didn’t.
The rest of the day went by. My mom wasn’t talking to any of us. I bought lunch so we could eat. I told her I bought lunch, and I thought she would eat, but she didn’t. In the past, if something like this happened and we didn’t ask if she had eaten, she would use that against us later – saying that we didn’t care. However, if we did ask, she was hostile. Either way, we couldn’t win.
I thought things would improve today. My dad acknowledged me this morning, which was nice. My mom is still actively ignoring us, and she’s hostile when she has to say something.
I don’t know what to say right now. I’ve never seen anyone else get angry about things like this, and I’m honestly so confused right now. I don’t know why she’s mad at me, and I don’t know what I did wrong. I’ve been trying to stay out of the way because the last thing I want is to be yelled at. I don’t understand why having a different opinion on something makes her so angry. Sometimes it feels like they see disagreement as rebellion, even though it’s just a difference in opinion.
I feel like my sister and I have tried everything in the past. We’ve tried to calmly explain our point of view, but they’re not receptive when they’re mad. They discount our opinions even when they’re not mad. After a certain point, they refuse to talk. Now we’ve resorted to waiting until things blow over because that seems like the best thing to do right now.
As all this is happening, I keep wondering if I’ve done something wrong. I love my parents, but I’m angry about the ways in which they’ve mistreated us. I’ve been conditioned to think that I’m ungrateful and selfish whenever I question them because they’ve told me that in the past. I question if I complain about them too much or if I fail to consider what they’ve done for me. I almost always wonder if I’m overexaggerating and failing to consider other people. I will say it’s difficult for me to show them I care because of how they’ve treated me. I’ve been conditioned to think that I’m a burden whenever I confide in people I trust. There are moments in which I trust myself, but it is difficult to tune my parents out when they say we’re exaggerating or selfish.
I try to see things from their point of view. I think about if there’s any way I can be better, and I work on that. My anger has been squashed down a lot growing up, and it’s been building up as a result. I get angry with them more easily, but I try not to lash out and I usually succeed. I try to write about it and release it in a healthy way. However, I can feel this anger getting stronger, and I don’t want to explode. I’ve tried so hard to empathize with them, but I’m exhausted. I can’t force them to change, but I don’t know if I should be more assertive. They don’t respond well when we try to be assertive.
I don’t want to blame them for all the bad things in my life. However, there are times when I wonder: if they had reacted differently, would I have been better off?
I talked to a counselor a while ago, and she told me that it’s emotional abuse. I explained some incidents to her, and she believes those incidents were examples of gaslighting. I’ve read about the symptoms of emotional abuse and gaslighting, and I relate to these things. Our friends have told us that what they’re doing is not normal. Yet I still wonder if there’s something wrong with me for seeing it this way, and I don’t know if I’m seeing things clearly.
They’ve controlled so many parts of my life that it feels like I have to climb mountains to break free. As a result of all this, I’ve been feeling trapped. I want to move out. They know I want to move out, and they said they would be open to it once the pandemic dies down. I want that to happen soon, and I hope they mean what they say. All I want is the space to express myself freely and live my life according to my values.
Thank you for reading this novel, and I hope everyone is doing well.