"Mean Mothers" by Peg Streep) with a wealth of information regarding daughters of 'mean mothers'. The author shares her experiences and what she's done to handle her 'mean mother'. I also found that this book been a topic of conversation on BPD Family because much of what Peg Streep discusses correlates with the BPD mother (or the sociopath mother, Casey Anthony).
One very poignant section in "Mean Mothers" by Peg Streep is about estrangement, which I frequently get questions about (how to, how long, how to carry on, when does the hurt end, etc) as follows:
But for some daughters – myself included – "divorcing" my mother was the only way I could move forward into a healthy future.
Most daughters who've broken with their mothers acknowledge that this is less a "solution" than a life-saving strategy which only offers partial healing. Whether the separation from a mother's ability to hurt and inability to love occurs because of "divorce" or death, the result falls very short of perfect. Terri's mother died when she was eighteen, ending what had been both a reign of terror and emotional deprivation. But even the abrupt ending wasn't really an ending at all. Her voice low but insistent, Terri tells me," There is always a hole in me that needs to be filled, and can't be. Not the love of my four kids or my husband of twenty-odd years, or my friends fills it. It's always there, like a tear or a hole in fabric. You can put threads in to repair the weave – the threads of other relationships – but the hole is still there."
I know precisely what she means: I will go to my grave, still grieving the mother love I never had and wishing just as hard that I had been born to someone else.
I love what she has to say about the topic, and how she refers to estrangement as 'divorcing' your parent. The term divorcing is one to ponder as we didn't get to select our parent... we were born to her. Due to being born to her, many daughters / sons feel as if they have to remain in a relationship out of respect, religion, or duty. When using the word divorce, the term alludes to CHOICE... that you CHOSE not to take the abuse, dysfunction, toxicity, craziness, manipulations ANY MORE. You chose to separate yourself permanently from the negativity just like you would a spouse.
- You do have a choice of what you let into your life.
- You do have a choice of what influences you.
- You do have a choice of how you allow those around you to treat you.
And by the way, I would rather have the hole of where a mother should fill rather than a hole as a result of continued abuse. One can build a life that is healthy and happy and prosper away from the BPD mother but trying to build a life with an EVER destructive force of the BPD mother is extremely challenging and fatiguing... if not virtually impossible.