Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The market

Amy says: sitting with your parents, I felt attached to them but I also felt a black hole, something missing and they said you’re right, there is something, but we’re not ready to talk about it, and when it came out your father became very depressed and your mother got scared. You were the core of the depression and the bleakness I was experiencing, that’s why it was helpful when I talked to you because it was like you were in the room.

But she also says: it was a struggle for all of us, the whole family. Are you kidding? What family – there was no family. Amy says you know your father was clinically depressed, of course I know he was depressed – that’s why he worked 60 hours a week for his whole life, I mean he always had a high-paying job and he controlled his own hours it wasn’t like he needed to work 60 hours a week, I remember when he first got cancer and he was working 30 hours a week and my mother said he was enjoying the time he had to read books. Of course he could’ve made time to read books, but instead he was working from 6 a.m. until 11 p.m.

But Amy means something different, clinically depressed he could hardly function I don’t know why that matters. I mean it’s like she’s trying to humanize him, how he really cared about me – I know he cared about me, I even know that he loved me, and it doesn’t matter – it almost makes it worse that he couldn’t take any steps to acknowledge sexually abusing me on any level at all, I mean even when he knew he was going to die and I told him it would make it easier for me to go on living and he still couldn’t say anything. I mean he wouldn’t say anything. He wouldn’t even say I love you.

There’s a whole conversation in here, but I’m just going to jump to the part where Amy wants me to think about the possibility of meeting with my mother and her when I’m in DC on tour, and strangely it starts to sound appealing I mean I’m desperate and Amy encourages me to think that somehow my mother will have some sudden understanding and I think about what it would mean if I could have a relationship with my mother that wasn’t just about her manipulation and my sense of powerlessness, we could go to visit the sea lions and smile like children together and I could get teary-eyed and feel vulnerable and maybe she could even say I love you and I wouldn’t feel like I suddenly couldn’t breathe. Maybe I wouldn’t feel like I had to lie about something no matter what maybe I wouldn’t have to think where’s my body oh here it is ouch.

Maybe it’s ironic that, the next time I’m supposed to talk to Amy but she hasn’t called yet and I pick up the phone and it’s my mother, usually I wouldn’t talk so early I’m too edgy but I figure if Amy’s not going to call maybe it’s time for my mother, another therapist except the wrong kind. It’s always okay and nothing and not okay until I ask if she’s talked to her financial planners, that’s always her excuse for why she hasn’t created the account she hasn’t talked to them yet they’re on vacation they’re busy she forgot to bring it up she can’t remember what they said. This time she says she doesn’t want to talk about that right now.

But she never wants to talk about it. She wants to say: I’m giving you everything you need. I mean she says that. Everything I need, except what I need. I mean what I’ve asked for. I mean what she offered. Not money, but an account that permanently pays my basic expenses, something that wouldn’t change her life on any level at all, I have to keep repeating that to myself because she lives this lie of fear. This lie that only serves her, scared is what you need to keep it.

She does remember why, why doesn’t seem to be the problem, she says: because it would make you feel secure. She doesn’t understand why I don’t, I don’t need to worry she’s there for me. I say how could I possibly trust that when everything you say you take back, every time you say you’re going to do something I have to think: is this really going to happen? And then I think: maybe that was the wrong thing to say, in this strategy where everything’s a dead end anyway I’m not sure if there is anything except wrong.

But this is my favorite response yet, I mean my absolute favorite – we have to wait and see what happens with the market. You see: now it’s the market, everybody’s worried about the market. I say: I think the market is going to crash, but that’s not the point, the point is that I’m asking you to create this account so that that wouldn’t matter. The money would be separate from your finances, I wouldn’t have to wait for you to say oh this month I can’t send you that check. The market is going to crash and I’m crashing with it.


Anonymous said...

I won't say you won't crash, because I'm not Nostradamus or any other clairvoyant, but if you do - remember that there's no sacred bond between mother and child once the child has been violated, and there's no shame in saying goodbye to those we think we're supposed to stay connected to. No shame. None. My hand's here to pick you up if you crash... and my shoulder if tears fall.


mattilda bernstein sycamore said...

TPQ, true enough -- no sacred bond at all. And thank you for the hand and shoulder :)

Love --

Lisa Harney said...

Sympathies for all that.

Your mother seems to be truly invested in not doing the simple task of giving you some security. :( Would a little bit of accountability wound her so badly? And what about your wounds while she dithers?

mattilda bernstein sycamore said...

Lisa, yes yes you're right -- yesterday I realized that of course if my mother has never done any work to acknowledge her abuse me as a child, when I was totally dependent on her, then of course it's hard to imagine she'll ever stop the abuse now -- a different kind of abuse, sure, but still the violence continues in so many ways...

Love --