When parents let you down


I haven’t made time for writing recently, and that’s a mistake. Writing helps me order my thoughts and feel less overwhelmed, and connecting with this community gives me a sense of companionship and support.

A few weeks ago, I got very withdrawn, and WordPress is one of the things I withdrew from. I was isolating myself because I felt so terrible. I don’t know exactly why I fell into such a dip, but it’s probably got a lot to do with the family triggers. I spent a few days at my parents’ house visiting my sister and my baby niece who were staying there.

My parents’ house is a trigger in itself. I lived there just before and for a few months after my long hospital admission a few years ago. The incident that led me to be hospitalised happened in their guest bathroom. I still can’t go into that room without seeing blood and feeling sick. And when I came out of hospital, my memories are of feeling suicidal there, feeling terrified of real life and the real world.

Plus, there is all the painful stuff that gets evoked by being around my parents. It’s not been long since my aunt passed away. It’s distressing for me to see my mum greive and not be able to really help. On top of that, my dad responded so uselessly that I experienced a resurgence of the anger I have around my relationship with him. His emotional absence and lack of courage when it comes to being supportive have meant that I’ve spent my whole life filling the gap he leaves and taking care of my mum.

I got extremely angry about that, about losing so much of being a child to taking on that caring role. Yes, my mum could have discouraged it, but the blame lies with him. He hasn’t been any better in recent years, and I’ve been immersed in the anger I feel about his abandonment of me whenever I’m struggling. He can’t face what I feel.

What makes that even more painful, is that he can face supporting my brother – the man who he knows abused me. He’s never been able to talk to me about my mental health or even really ask how I am, but when I reported my brother to the police a few years back, he accompanied him to his police interview to provide moral support. I can’t get over that. I can’t make it feel OK that he can do the tough stuff for my abuser and not for me. It’s like he decided when the police case was in progress that my making the report transformed me into the perpetrator, and my brother somehow became the victim.

I can’t stand my dad at the moment. And I also can’t stand how much it hurts when I think of the ways he failed me and continues to fail me. I suppose this is coming up again today becuase I will be seeing him tomorrow. I want to go there because I don’t get to see much of my little niece and this is my only chance without taking a trip to Germany. But it’s so difficult to manage everything that’s triggered.




6 Comments Add yours

  1. wittysally says:

    I enjoyed reading this…
    You could check out my blog later too


  2. Oh love. Thinking of you this weekend. I’m sorry your dad is an emotional let down. Try and hang on tight to the positives of this week with J and immerse yourself in your niece. Big treat needs to be lined up for when you come home x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Laura says:

      Thanks lovely. I’ve started various DIY projects since I’ve been back, which have been a good distraction. And my niece was gorgeous as always.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Mega 🌈 points xxx huge hug xxx

        Liked by 1 person

  3. DV says:

    It’s horrible that getting to see your niece means repeatedly opening old wounds. I’m glad you’re reconnecting here.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Laura says:

      Thanks DV. I’m glad too.

      Liked by 1 person

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