I wrote a letter to my mother and I want to share it here. I don't think I'll ever send this to her, but my T suggested that I write it to express how I'm feeling about everything that's been going on lately. So, I decided to post it. Maybe it will encourage someone to write their own.
To My Mother,
I’m writing to you because I just really don’t understand some things. I have questions and I need answers. I don’t know if you will be able to provide me with any answers because honestly, I don’t know if even you have any. Some things just don’t make sense to me and I don’t know if you realize the weight or the effect your actions have had on me recently.
When I told you that I wasn’t going to church anymore, you didn’t seem to care at all. Not that I wanted you to cry and plead with me to stay, but you seemed okay with it. I was a little surprised, but I was okay with that. Subsequently, your actions seemed normal…ish. I messaged you about small things like I normally would. I let you know when I left for Austin and when I returned because it was something I thought you would want to know. I thought you cared about my safety. You responded lackadaisically and short. I tried not to read too much into it because I didn’t want to make up anything that wasn’t real. I didn’t want to believe the things running through my mind were true.
I was honest with you about everything. I told you why I was leaving the church and I answered your questions. I had a very candid conversation where I thought everything was okay when I left. Did I miss something? I’ve seen you one time since that conversation took place. You were so cold toward me. You would barely look at me or speak to me and I don’t understand why. Is it because I’m not going to church anymore? If it is, that doesn’t make sense to me. You didn’t seem to care when I told you that I wasn’t going anymore. I had no reason to suspect that you would hold that against me.
Now… Grandma has passed, and I had to find out from Facebook. You didn’t even think it was worth a phone call, or even a text, to let me know that my grandmother died. Furthermore, I told you that I loved you and you left me hanging. I mean, what kind of mother is so angry with their child for becoming their own person that they won’t even tell them that they love them? Unless, of course, you don’t love me. It FEELS like you don’t love me. I know you don’t like it when I say that but this time, I have proof. You wouldn’t even say it back to me.
I thought parents were supposed to love their children more than anyone else in the world and you couldn’t care less about me. I could die tomorrow, and this is how things would’ve been left between us. Is that what you want? A strained relationship with your child? My whole life I have tried to please you. I followed the rules, I tried to be perfect, I offered assistance where I could… all because I wanted your love and approval. It was never enough. It doesn’t matter WHAT I do, it will never be enough for you.
I know I could probably solve this whole thing by going to church with you. Is that really what you want? Me forcing myself into something that doesn’t make me happy just so you will love me? WHY is your love so conditional on if I’m living my life the way you want me to live it? That’s not fair. My love for you isn’t conditional on whether or not you’re doing things the way I wish you would do them. As hurt as I am right now by your actions, I still love you because you’re my MOTHER. I cry myself to sleep almost every night because I crave your love and affection. Because something inside of me still wants to know that you love me. I miss your voice. I miss your laugh. I miss your smile. I miss our impromptu ice cream dates, our morning stops at Starbucks before shopping, our movie nights where you always fall asleep halfway through the movie. I miss eating popcorn together and laughing about how much you enjoy it. I miss seeing musicals together and just enjoying each other’s company. I miss you.
I never wanted to cut you out of my life or lose you. I know you don’t agree with my choices, and I’m not asking you to. I’m simply wondering why this caused so much strife between us. You could’ve voiced your opinion when I told you I was leaving the church and you didn’t. You rolled your eyes when I began to cry and you shut me out. We could’ve had a more productive conversation about everything but instead of talking to me, you completely let me go and now I’m lost and trying to figure out life without a mom and it sucks. I need you more than I want to admit. Some days, I feel so alone and isolated and I think of you. I know dad works a lot so we could keep each other company, but I know that’s not what you want. It’s just me.
Do you know what it feels like to think your mother doesn’t want a relationship with you? It hurts, mom. It hurts a lot. But I know that nothing I say will change how you feel or how you’re acting toward me, and maybe that’s for the best. I don’t want a fake relationship, I want a real one. I know that will never happen.
I hope you’re doing well. I genuinely do. I don’t wish anything ill toward you and I never will. You’re my mother, after all.