anxiety, bipolar, child abuse, depression, drugs, mania, mental illness, substance abuse

no more wire hangers 3

is anyone getting the titles of the posts in this series?

my mother knew she had mental illness issues, but she refused to see a psychiatrist or a therapist. we convinced her to go to a couple therapists to find one she felt she could talk with. she went to meet two and her excuses for not going was that she was sure one had ulterior motives and the other had an office that made her anxious.

when i had panic attacks growing up (we didn’t know that’s what they were at the time) she got angry at me. in retrospect i think it was it was because she was scared when she saw me going through that. i’ve seen her have panic attacks and oh boy have i seen her anxious.she was afraid that somewhere inside her was me. she didn’t want to  go through what i went through with my depression and mania. two psychiatrists told me, after long talks about my mother, that she was bipolar, too. i’m not surprised, but having a doctor say it shed light on things and made me feel validated

she even self medicated, like i did. she was obsessed with this shitty white wine. she drank glass after glass all evening while she watched courtroom dramas and true crime shows. after i went to university she bought a new house that she has since defaulted on. the house was a gorgeous Victorian in downtown St. Louis. it was in a neighborhood that was transitioning from a gutted ghetto into lovely restored houses. good old gentrification. her house was already transformed when she bought it.  it was gorgeous but it had three stories. she usually watched tv and drank in a family room on the second floor and also in her bedroom on the third floor. guess who had to fetch the wine?

drinking was her second drug of choice, the first  was nicotine.  by now, she will have smoked almost 60 years, two or more packs a day. she was a professional smoker. she chain smoked 24/7. she drowned her sorrows in wine, cigarettes, and taking it all out on me.

i’ve already said i’m a recovering alcoholic, i’ve been clean for 15 years. when i went home to visit (my dad lived in St. Louis and i was tied to my mother by a mental bond i had to fight to break, so i still kept coming back. she encouraged me to drink. she prepared by laying in a supply of beer, gin (she had cocktails after work, too; gin and tonics…one or two) champagne and vodka plus a few bottles of decent wine for dinners. she encouraged me to drink. pushed me to drink. i  jumped back into the hole of drunkenness to avoid having to deal with her. i can’t  put it all off on my. i was thrilled to have time away from my husband so i could drink my fill. i had to be very honest with him to keep our relationship working well and i wanted both he and I to be happy. i made the decisions to drink the alcohol she bought, but it was damned hard, too hard. i embraced it.

hangovers were hell so my mother gave me a bottle of codeine to use to take them away. i took a few in the morning. went back to sleep, woke and puked, went back to sleep and got up feeling pretty good.

we went out drinking too. she liked to show off my tattoos and piercings when we were bar hopping, hoping to look cool. at home she hated the tattoos.

Mommy Dearest.

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9 thoughts on “no more wire hangers 3”

  1. I see the titles and I am curious as too just what exactly it refers to and how. I want to assume that it has to do with abortion and how it applies, I can’t be sure on. In my life story abortion applies in the manner of my mother trying to have me aborted and flaking out at the last second and later rubbing it in my face telling me how she should have aborted me. For you, abortion could play a much different role. I don’t like to assume however because as the saying goes; “to assume makes an ‘ass’ out of ‘u’ and ‘me’ ” and I have found truth in this.
    So how far off am I?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s a really interesting interpretation! I never thought of that. I have never had an abortion, but I am pro choice.

      I’m so sorry to hear your experience. I can sort of imagine that. Hugs!

      The title comes from the movie “Mommy Dearest” Fay Dunaway
      plays a drug addict movie star who is a lot like my mother. The best and most emotionaly painful scene is the mother screaming at the daughter about the state of her closet. She start ripping clothes off the hangers and throwing them. The little girl is on the floor sobbing.

      There are padded satin hangers in the closet. The fancy hangers don’t leave marks on the shoulders like a wire hangers do.

      The mother starts beating the girl with a wire hanger and screaming more wire hangers no more wire hangers!’
      😶

      Liked by 1 person

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