Is This Gaslighting?

Although I had voiced my opinion and dislike for the actions of my birth mother, I was met with anger and lack of understanding. I wanted nothing to do with her, but no one around me seemed to understand.

At this point I’m still living with my grandparents in Arizona and I was working when I could while attending community college. Because of the disagreements I wanted to move out of the house but I was unable to. The lack of communication was really starting to take a toll on me. It came to a point of crushing disappointment when I was informed that in two days time my birth mother and one of her daughter’s were coming to Arizona to stay in our house for a week long visit.

I was flabbergasted. And I knew I wouldn’t be able to stay in my own house for the next week because something was being forced on me that I didn’t want.

So, I had to find a place to stay for the next week because I had absolutely no desire to meet anyone from that part of the family. Just when I thought I could have some semblance of a relationship with my birth mother she goes off her medication and causes me horrible emotional pain. Why would I want to have a relationship with someone like that? No one around me seemed to get that.

Plus there’s the fact that she walked out of my life 20 years ago and hadn’t even tried to make contact. There’s no way that I would be able to love and/or trust someone like that.

About three days into their visit, I received a phone call from my grandma. She asked me again to come to the house and meet them. I refused and again, I was met with anger. I held my ground and told her to let me know when they were gone.

One of the main things that my birth mother enjoys throwing at me is the phrase “you’re the reason why your birth dad killed himself.” The first time I read that on my phone screen I was devastated. Yes, my birth father committed suicide. But I truly believe there were deeper issues that ended up driving him to that point. When it happened, I believe I had only known him for about a year and a half. Not nearly enough time. Of course when I found out, I was devastated. It was the first time I felt like I had a true connection with anyone in my family. We had so many things in common, we even had a lot of the same habits and mannerisms.

I knew what she said wasn’t true. But for a split second she made me doubt it.

To this day, I still can’t believe the amount of anger and irritation that was thrown my way over the years. Especially when we go from never, ever, talking about my birth parents to suddenly having her come to our house and being forced to come spend time with them. How was I supposed to handle that? From nothing to everything. I feel as though every ‘normal’ person would struggle with that.

Happenings with the birth mother slowed down for a little while, I basically started saying ‘I don’t care’ whenever something about them would come up. I couldn’t listen to any of it because nine times out of ten there was some sort of dramatic story about something that one of her kids had done to get in trouble. Whether it was in school or elsewhere. I had things to worry about in my own life, I didn’t want to hear about anyone else’s drama.

Does that sound selfish? Part of me feels as though it is selfish, but the other part says ‘you have your own life to live, and you don’t need anyone else’s drama dragging you down.’

Well, no matter what I did, the drama just kept following me and it would slowly get worse over time.

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