I got struck by a new idea yesterday, the idea that has never occurred to me before. My mother was a workaholic. How can I say? This is that lingering feeling that whereas everything else in person’s life falls apart, there are still more resources to be spent on the addiction. Workaholism is the modern day addiction, belonging to well respected people. In my mother’s case I would usually see her at 9 in the evening, plus she was working during the weekend. Most of the time she was emotionally unable to take care for me, plus I had to fend for my own food. Sometimes she would go to shop, sometimes not. My responsibilities, as long as I remember, have been cleaning the house and other related jobs. Granted I really sucked at this, so more often than not I got to hear how useless I am and how other seven year olds are already able to cook for the whole family. As a seven year old you lack the critical data to analyze this information. However, I still am dealing on a daily basis with the belief that I am somehow dysfunctional and not able to do “normal people stuff”.
Work together with food was my mother’s favorite way to deal with her emotions. After my grandparents died my mother gained about 50 kg. She would hardly get away from her computer. She slowly gave up all family friends. Oh yeah and I got to hear everything about her work difficulties since I was school age. We were constantly struggling financially and unfortunately my mother made me aware every time when she was unsure about the funding next year. I really was scared. I got a sense that I cannot trust her to take care of things and that we can fall every moment. This has greatly contributed to my later anxiety about life in general.
The most difficult emotion I am still dealing with is the sense that I am all alone in life. Indeed I was alone in taking care for my mother who seemed to have very little concern for neither of our health nor the household. I was made responsible for taking care for her whenever she was ill and, no, she did not regard it as a favor but as a demand. Needless to say that it was a double standard, since I can remember very few times with her actually showing any interest towards my illnesses. She was usually too tired to care. So yes, I have grown up having to take adult responsibilities, feeling constantly helpless and overburdened. I would say, that I lost my childhood in many ways. I always knew that I was a low priority for my mother compared to her work and food. Unfortunately.