Tag Archives: Desi Abusers

Living a Curse: Adult Children of Desi Abusers

15 Aug

Living a Curse: Adult Children of Desi Abusers

08/14/2015

DG ran in to him on the way back home he was rushing to the bank. He told her he was glad to see her as he was leaving for India in two days. She asked when he was coming back. He said, he was leaving for good. She had a puzzled look on her face, “it is mid semester you are already half way through your master’s program.” I have to, it is important, urgent and needed he retorted. Tell me, what could be so important that you’ll forsake your education. It is family problem that needs my presence, he said while looking at his shoes. What kind of family problem that can’t wait another six months? Tell me in detail, we can figure out something, I can help you find resources back in your home town said DG. No, it is my mom who wants me back she is sick. What happened to her? She is just sick she needs me. Is it life threatening? “No, I just fear something will happen to her.” DG lectured him on his enmeshed sense of self and failure to see things for what they were and how he’ll be a nuisance to his future partner. He retorted, “you don’t know, it is not like that.” Then you tell me what it is?

He kept insisting he can’t tell and DG won’t give up. He insisted he would visit her before he left the country but DG wouldn’t trust him. Together they went to the bank and then he accompanied her home. She made some tea and they started talking. This six feet tall lanky 28 year old man lowered his eyes, the cup in his hands shook as words failed him. After lots of assurance of privacy, confidentiality and nature of DG’s work he began talking. For the purposes of the length of the post DG will omit her probes. He said:

I fear my mother will have a heart attack, she is living under too much stress, she is all by herself. I am here and my newly married brother is working in Canada. Though I speak to her every day but I live in constant fear that she’ll die of this persistent stress (ma ko kuchh ho jayega. Something will happen to her). She has no support till we were in India we made sure one of us was around now she is all by herself I don’t know how long can this continue. After a long silence, he wiped tears from his eyes and spoke in a trembling voice. I have never spoken to anyone about this. We had a very hard life, she raised us all by herself. You cannot even imagine the days I have seen as a child often we slept hungry, had no fee for school. We would go to my aunt (mother’s sister) or grandmother’s (mother’s mother) home to eat. My mother has not seen a day of peace, she struggled to keep a roof over our heads, she didn’t even have a decent saree. To attend family functions her sister would gave her clothes, she would be the plainest woman there. I remember my mom was young and beautiful very caring and kind always trying hard to make it better for us. I decided as a child when I grow up I’ll pamper her, I’ll buy her the best clothes and jewelry. When I got my first job in Australia I bought her latest suits, sarees and gold jewelry, I wanted her to look the best dressed woman in any gathering. For the first time we saw her smiling and beaming in pride all her hard work and struggles had paid off.

In all this talk not once DG heard him mention his father. She asked him about his father. He evaded the question and then gradually started talking by addressing the man as, “woh” (he), not once he said, dad or father as if he was trying to maintain an emotional distance between them. He is the reason I am going back, he was always abusive to our mother, physically, verbally, emotionally, mentally and economically. He was a leading contractor in the city rolled in money ten years older to my mother, she was a school teacher but he made her quit the job. He is a habitual drinker as far as I can remember he was always away when he came home he was drunk, he would throw fits beat us up to save us mother would come in between and take the blows. He didn’t come home for days, didn’t care if we had food and school fee. Our house looked little better than a shanty, I had no friends, how could I? We never went to anyone’s home because we could never invite them over. Even today I hesitate to mix with people.

Yelling, screaming and hitting is all I have to tell about my childhood. He robbed us of our childhood. I just wanted him to go away and leave us alone. Go away anywhere just don’t return. I dreamt taking my mother away three of us living in happily ever after sort of way. He would not let mother go back to work as teacher I think she also lost confidence in all this, she would sew to raise us. One time he did not pay the bills our power was cut off she would sew in the candle light. One time he saw her sewing he destroyed the blouse in anger saying how dare you do this in “my house.” She had to feed us so she would sew in hiding. While I was in high school mother somehow managed to start a boutique with the help of her family. Our living standard improved a bit, he started coming home, his business he said was suffering. I think it was a lie. I won’t be surprised if he has another family. Mother fell sick for a month and trusted him with orders, he was indeed acting differently. When she recovered the tailors and workers had left as they were not paid everything was destroyed we were back to where we started. I know he did it on purpose, he just couldn’t fathom our peace. What kind of father would do that? We both were good students both of us got admission in engineering college mother’s family made sure we went to college we have paid them back after we got jobs.

Both of us brothers made sure one of us was in the city living at home while the other took a job or project abroad. We built our dream house, used best tiles and fixtures, bought everything new, the furniture, pots and pans, curtains, everything. A fully stocked pantry for the first time she could cook anything. We didn’t take a thing from “that house” and we moved. We left him there in “his” house. He went around bad mouthing us, telling people that we have abandoned him now that we have started earning. Community members and relatives from his side started admonishing us. Where were these same people when he abandoned us and we slept hungry or had no school fee. It became a big spectacle, people at the community events, temple everywhere started sneering at us and telling us he is now an old man and has changed. We should care for him after all he is our father. Unwillingly we had to let him into our home. Our dream to be free of him was quashed by his evil designs and this society. All our lives we thought we’ll be free of him once we were grown up but here we were. He is seventy two and going strong hasn’t changed a bit.

One night my brother was in his room with door bolted. “He” in his drunken fit was knocking it and wanted him to open the door. Brother asked him to leave him alone but “he” just kept getting louder and louder. “He,” picked up the wooden pestle and started hitting the door it broke he also damaged the walls and windows. At this my brother lost it, I had never seen him so mad. Brother just wanted to kill “him.” Mother and I somehow pacified him. There is no way we can get rid of this plague. It is a curse on our lives. You might be wondering who talks like that about their parent. Tears rolled from his eyes, we made another cup of tea and started preparing for dinner while he continued talking.

I worked five years saved some money to go abroad and do a masters thus I came here. Instead of congratulating me “he” kept saying how I was wasting money. Every day he calls and asks me to come back and take care of him, “mera kamaoo beta, wapas aa meri pension lagaa de” (my earning son, come back and give me regular monthly stipend as a pension). Brother got married and got transferred to Canada. Mother wanted him to leave because she did not want his new wife to see how messed up our lives are. I live in constant fear that he is going to kill my mother or her heart will fail some day, how much can one person take. These days I can’t focus on studies, it is so hard I get flash backs and night sweats hence I decided to go back, I know he’ll make my life miserable even though it was my money. I am 28 and still not able to stand up to him or protect my mother or myself. We are so trapped I don’t see a way out.

He had seen the school doctor who diagnosed him with anxiety and depression. But DG suspected it was a full blown case of PTSD that manifested once he was away from constant dysfunction, it needed proper diagnosis and treatment. After dinner they did some soul healing work through meditations and deep breathing. She gave him few tools and referrals in his home town to follow up with. It was past 2am DG suggested he sleep on the futon in the living room. Next morning he attended his chores while DG went to work he came back in the evening to continue with meditations and healing work, he also read few posts on GGTS to understand what was going on in his life. Once back home he contacted DG to inform her of his progress he saw a clinical psychologist and practices what he learned from DG. He did not even complete five sessions he said it was too expensive (Rs 5000 per session). He has taken up a job after six months of hiatus. The situation at home did not improve but he is now better equipped to handle it. DG had asked him to write this post but it was too anxiety provoking for him thus he gave her permission to write this.

A person may divorce an abusive spouse but children cannot. Ours is a system that will not let you leave an abuser more so if you are his/her child you are doomed for ever…

 

 

 

Desi Sons,Victims of Their Mothers II: Modus Operandi

14 May

This post is in continuation from previous post. Original comment is here. The bold, CAPs and italicized is addition from DG.

Thank you DG.

My post was not against parents, I loved them and still do but I cannot see them because of the actions they took and think they were right in doing them. It is true that I have not come across a woman as toxic as my mother.

I posted my story partly because I wanted to inform people that there are guys in this mess too. Most desi men are very lost, between two poles 1) wife 2) mother.

Desi parents alternate between two poles :

a) Downright ignorant, nasty, abusive.

b) Controlling, manipulating and over protective.

Narcissism reigns supreme in both forms. Mine were in the second category, emotionally engulfing and very manipulating, in particular my mother. My father’s toxicity was of a different sort but it was my mother that really had everyone wrapped around her little finger.

I am not sorry about estrangement, in my ideal world it would never come down to this because my parents did a lot for us. I had this ideal picture in my mind where I would have done anything for them but then things changed ….

My mother underwent a changing I did not fathom at first and did not understand. It was around the time where I had confessed to her that I want to be self sufficient independent adult. At some point she realized that her only investment is her sons (she openly admitted this many times and made it very clear to me that she will let go, “I will NOT let you go.” … yes she said this many many times). Everytime she said this my stomach would turn but I kept quiet, patient that she might ease up on this.

When an abused declares or decides they will nolonger be controlled and will walk away from the controlling intimate the abuser feels loosing control. The idea of loosing control makes them intensify abuse or induce more manipulative ways to keep the abused trapped in their design. Abusers usually begin with sweet talk, how they cannot live without you if that doesn’t work they employ limiting your access to survival means, finances, social isolation etc. When that fail they resort to violent out bursts. This is a very dangerous time. If you are contemplating leaving your abuser do not declare it to them. Move away and then inform them that IT IS OVER. And thereafter there is no going back or working out until your safety (physical, emotional, mental, spiritual all included) is guaranteed, sorry there are no guarantees in the books of abusers.

However it became worse with time, the mistake I made was that I kept thinking that if I did this one more thing for her she would ease up. But as soon she was pleased she started pressing for something else, her aim was to steal me for me… kill all sense of independence so she can control my life as she desires. The guilt an manipulation I faced for a year before my arranged marriage was probably my most miserable year of my life, I was torn between leaving and staying.

Abusers suck the abused into perpetual cycle of people pleasing. The harder you try to please them the harder it becomes to please them because they have made a choice not to ever be pleased. You’ll finish on task they’ll be ready with another. It is a choice they have made and you can’t do anything about it so stay out of this game of making them happy.

Her strategy was multi-faceted, understanding is golden ….

Facet 1: RECRUITING ALLIES

A general nasty level manipulation tactic was to keep me engaged, keep my mind busy so she can have my time. She would start talking to me in subtle, looking at my face to see my reaction to it and thus adjust her. This was the most irritating form of manipulation because it assumed that I stupid and child like. I used to laugh at this behind my back, I pretended in front of her that her manipulation worked to ward this form of incessant manipulation off.

She would get my brothers to do the same, both my elder and younger brother to engage me, keep me busy with tasks, giving my false praise in an effort to smother me and make me give in. She used to pump my brothers for info regarding me and my brothers fully participated, my mother was very good at manipulation. My elder brother though she was right and younger brother mocked and berated me behind my back many many times.

I took me a long time to figure out this facet as my mother was and is a master of guilt inducing toxic lump. When I realized it I understood that anything I say will be used against me so I better watch what I say, how I say and who i say it too.

Abusers will watch your every move and expression keep a ready log of it and use it against you when ever you try to challenge them. Abusers, especially emotional blackmailers recruit allies. Allies are usually people in your immediate circle who have stake in your life; relatives, cousins, friends etc. If you still don’t give in they’ll summon their allies to convert you and make you submit to their designs. You are exposed and shamed in front of these allies thus to escape such future humiliation you start towing the line. Parents often use siblings against each other to maintain control over all of them; siblings relate to parents differently. Some abusers create immediate allies in strangers by shaming you in public or posing a martyrs in public.

Facet 2 : ABUSIVE EXPECTATIONS = YOUR OBLIGATION

Using circumstances to gain sympathy and induce massive guilt. This was very difficult to figure out because there was extreme guilt involved. Basically my mother would complain about someone (my sister in law, my elder brother or father) about something seemingly horrible they did to her and how she is miserable. After telling me the garb she used to observe my reaction to it and keeping coming back with the same manipulation in one form or the other until I reacted to it in a emotional outburst – at this point she knew she got me. Few days of peace followed then the bullshi* again.

The purpose of facet 2 was to keep me close to her, so I never do anything that I wanted for myself. The higher purpose of this facet was to keep me engaged, she knew my weak spots and attacked them whenever she pleased and when she pleased.

A common tactic was to request a task of me which I had to do, during the task she would give me false adulation and pump me for information about circumstances that were later used against me at convenient times. A fight between my brother and father would be used to press her own agenda on me, she was clever and knew when to press & how much to press.

Abuse is cyclic in nature, in order not to alienate the abused and loose the game all together abusers strategically employ praise and admonishing. Abusers go around portraying themselves as martyrs; making an impression that they can be rescued and made well if you will step up. “I am sad or sulking because you would not do X. I’ll be happy if you do X.” “Look how miserable you have made me.” “So and so wronged me you are the only one who can make it better for me, if you listen to my sob story or do as I want.” Thus it is your job to keep the abuser in good humor. An abused starts believing it is their job to keep the abuser happy this induces guilt every time they try to do something for themselves.

It is important for abusers to keep the abused engaged at all times because time to themselves will make them analyze their situation and ask for a better deal or rebel.

Facet 3 ELIMINATING COMPETITION

Hate for other women. Toxic or no toxic, this was just plain crazy.

She often used to tell me : “You are naive and don’t understand women”. (Underneath my breath I used to tell myself : ‘but I do understand you …..’). Any women who even looked at were vilified openly. I missed out on women a lot a lot of time girls that I found downright gorgeous.

My sister in law used to face the brunt of this nonsense, she realized the game early on, I requested her to be calm and concentrate on her life. Of all the people she would know why I left my family. I used to feel for her but her life is hers to deal with. She will eventually divorce my brother who unfortunately is one of the dumbest men I know when it comes to deciphering my parents actions.

As abusers recruit allies they also tactfully check any competition. Their competitors are all those people who have the potential to lure the abused away from the abuser like, friends, sympathetic relatives who call out on the abuser or an attractive suitor. Abusers are insecure and will do anything to paint their competitors black. To stay on top of their game they have to systematically eliminate all competition.They prefer to dwell with those they can control thus their allies are their mini-mes.

Facet 4 DRAMA MONGERING & CREATING FEAR

“I will die …… something will happen to me”.

Geez do I really need to say more? Pathetic shi*

Abusers create so much chaos through drama that abused in an attempt to buy peace and cease chaos gives in. Thus a mission accomplished for the abusers. Desi mothers are known for making suicide threats or they suffer an unknown aliment when attention is one someone else. At T’s wedding her MIL had a fainting spell; everyone rushed to her and they forgot to do the wedding pictures; mission accomplished.

Something will happen to me… is the favorite and nothing ever happens. It is a fear induction mechanism to keep the abused and allies in tow. The fear of blame induces guilt

Facet 5 MINIMIZING & DENYING

Plausible Deni-ability.

She would deny everything and shake off her responsibility when it was convenient for her. My marriage was part of this, oh “you said yes to the marriage …. no I did not, you confirmed the marriage while I was asleep and then manipulated me into it”. She chose my wife carefully, seemingly meek and controllable, someone she could keep under her thumb at all times.

Abusers never take responsibility for their actions. They always have a reason to everything they ever did. If they broke stuff in a anger fit, it was because you made them angry. If you call them on their misbehavior or unreasonableness they out rightly feign ignorance about what you are talking about.

I learnt this the hard way, I would suffer in silence, then read about it & THEN realize this is the shi* my mother is pulling. She know what she was doing all along taking satisfaction in putting me through a emotional roller coaster and then taking satisfaction that her goals have been met.

Estrangement was depressing but necessary, wish it was not like this but thats life and it is not all roses and tulips. Peace of mind is good, I love peace and quiet so I invest my time in working towards goals and pushing myself to limits I didn’t know existed. Most people would classify me as a freak given I am away from my family but I can make choices that they can’t, this does not make me better than them but the thrill of having a choice is the essence of being human, remember even God gave humans a choice to accept or reject Him.

Do I hate my parents? No.

Did I forgive my parents? There is nothing to forgive, I forgave my-self and that gave me the comfort of being true to myself. If one does not confront reality it will force itself upon you and you will kick yourself for it, make your choice before you have to make one.

Before we can forgive someone it is important to forgive ourselves because we beat ourselves for being duped.

CONGRATULATIONS FOR RECLAIMING YOUR LIFE.

From the wet market

Mostly vegetarian meals from Asia

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