My cheap psychology: mother rejects son, son becomes anxious wreck life long

August 26, 2020 § Leave a comment

Can people choose to be happy? As far back as I can remember in my life, from the age of 15 or so, when an act of complete rejection from my mother left me devastated, I’ve never been able to be happy. Even on my wedding day, I don’t recall being truly happy. When my son was born, I watched in trepidation as he was whisked away in a tight bundle to be kept in the incubator for the next day and a half, if I recall right. But was I truly happy? I don’t know. I don’t recall feeling euphoric or anything like that.

Before the incident with my mother I recall being a normal kid, capable of real happiness. I’d been friends with a girl next door. She was a year older than me, and she wasn’t my girlfriend or anything. She was a friend, and I used to spend as much time as I could with her. I made the mistake of bragging about how well I knew her to some fellas and I also made up some lies.

Things got out of hand because of my lies and the girl and her mum marched to my place and told my mum to reprimand me or something. I wasn’t home at that time. For the next two days, my mother walked around like I never existed, like she didn’t remember giving birth to me and looked right through me, didn’t utter a word to me and so on — you can make up your worst silent-rejection scenarios and she did it to me. Made me feel like I belonged with the scum of the earth and that she’d rather that I didn’t exist than be her son who’d told those lies.

That incident changed my life permanently for the next 30 years. I repressed the pain and hurt and the memory itself so deep within me that it took another incident — this time a panic attack with heart palpitations so bad that I was convinced I would soon die — to break open everything in my mind and bring everything out into the open — including every loss, every humiliation I’d suffered over the 30 years since that rejection.

That rejection and the pain it had caused when I was 15 had guided my every action up until my first panic attack in early 2018. And even after it. It is only now, as I’ve begun to work through what happened to me, in my sessions with my therapist, that I’m beginning to find the real me.

I don’t know how to choose to be happy. Because of what my mum did to that 15-year old me, the adult in me was unable to take responsibility for being a proper adult through the 20 years of my marriage for example. Or through the 12 years of being a father.

To this day, if my wife goes out for just a walk down the road to the neighbourhood supermarket, I feel anxious and a loss of control over my life. The only difference is, three years ago, I didn’t know why I felt that way. Today I know.

Now the smallest piece of work makes me anxious for fear or failure that will lead to my losing my job. And I’m faced with delivering cover stories. For some people, throwing themselves at work is a solution. How I wish that was true for me as well.

#anxiety #depression #rejection #anxietyanddepression #repressedmemories #panicattacks

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