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Symptoms => General Discussion => Topic started by: FredrickaGoshlox on June 20, 2015, 01:32:17 PM

Title: Invalidation by FOO
Post by: FredrickaGoshlox on June 20, 2015, 01:32:17 PM
I can't think of anything that feels worse, makes me doubt the most or causes more shame in me, than that my siblings deny the abuse. Yes, I was the scapegoat and a lot of it happened not within their hearing or sight and my youngest sister is seven years younger than I am and things changed. Yes, I was a difficult child who had tantrums and was very unhappy. But there are some things they DO know for sure.
My mother told me she had not felt anything for me while she was pregnant or after I was born. She would not hold me because I "siffened" so she  propped a bottle of milk in my crib. She almost bragged about it. She did anything to shut me up. I guess I cried a lot and fed my chocolate milk in a bottle for five years. Yes, five years. She had no real caring for me my entire life and called me horrible names that I still hear in my head unless I talk myself out of her tapes. I was lazy, selfish, I never thought of anyone but myself, I was a brat, I was a troublemaker, I was stupid, etc. etc. etc. I never got hit, which makes me doubt the abuse.

I tried to love my mother until the end, but she disowned/disinherited me. I really hurt with that, even though I saw it coming. The money wasn't a lot and I didn't care about it. It was how she dismissed me as a daughter. I kept calling her, kept trying, although she never called me back. She has a GC, my brother, who can do NOTHING wrong, never could. And my sister sacrificed a lot to get along with her, although sister has mental health issues too...anorexia and refused to invite GC to her wedding because he was too ugly and she was ashamed of him. Now they are bosum buddies. Who knows what she said to him to make him excuse that? She wasn't exactly quiet about her disdain. There is just so much. My sister hangs up on me whenever she is angry at me and if I call back to try to find out why she is upset, she calls the cops. Her latest is to post on a forum that I am diagnosed borderline. That's a lie.  I was never diagnosed. I thought my CPTSD might be borderline and the only person who mentioned the disorder was me. I think she acts a lot more borderline than I do.

Recently, my sister and brother both told me it was ME who abused my mother and everybody else, not the other way around.They insist I was never abused, that Mother was a good person. She may have been to them. I can not invalidate their experience with her. I'm sure she was good to GC. But they invalidated me.

I am going beyond no contact with them. I'm refusing to even look at their social media as it is a trigger for EF, but I'm still pretty stunned that t hey really seem to believe I was not abused. That I caused it. An infant? A little child? I WAS the one who tended to speak up for myself and to bring up our problems. GC was blissfully unaware of any and sister just suffered quietly.

Does anyone else find that relatives invalidate your memories? My sister said I make things up. I guess my brother agrees. Fortunately, that is all I have of a FOO, besides a very elderly father who has always treated me fairly. He was not a great father, but did not play favorites and is being very kind to me lately.

Am I the only one? Invalidation? Gaslighting maybe?
Title: Re: Invalidation by FOO
Post by: fairyslipper on June 20, 2015, 09:40:10 PM
 Fredricka, NO you are not the only one. I am sorry you had to experience all of these things and for as long as you have too. :hug: I think as more people read your post and comment,  you will see that the dynamic you describe is sadly pretty common in these kinds of families.

The way your mom treated you period and especially as a baby are both just inexcusable. I just don't think those types can handle what comes with having an infant or small child. I OFTEN heard stories about what a cold child I was as a baby and toddler and how I always had an upset stomach. So much so that she had to put "something" in my bottle to calm me down.  :stars: My brother on the other hand was the perfect child. Up until just a few years ago there were stories like that being told and I am 54 years old lol. And how on earth can you defend what kind of baby you were to those kinds of comments? It is all so ridiculous.  ??? :stars: The fact that you never got hit doesn't discount at all the way you were hit with her words and neglect. Emotional abuse is just as bad as physical......and leaves permanent scars too.  :hug:

It has been implied that I have exaggerated and "dwelled" on things she/they did far longer than was healthy. Yes, they are experts at invalidation and gaslighting. Trust your gut. And removing yourself from their toxicity is a great idea. I am happy for you that you have that honest relationship with your father. That is wonderful

The invalidation can really mess with your head. It sure did in my case. I often had trouble knowing what was true and what wasn't. Thank God for my husband and later daughters who saw things like they were and could validate my reality. Like you, my brother is also a GC. I can remember sharing with him things that happened with my parents and how crazy they were treating me and he would always begin his response with "well if what you are saying is true." I wanted to smack him. He also did some pretty crazy things to me and if I dared try to talk to my npd/bpd mom  about it, she would make excuses, dismiss it completely or go into some sob story about how her brother was REALLY mean to her and I didn't know what mean was if I thought my brother was mean. It is all so crazy. There was a lot of lying going on  with all of them too, to the point I never knew what the truth was with any of them.

My parents both literally walked out of my life 4 years ago. No good bye, no hey here is our new number, or address. Just sold their house and moved to where my brother is 1200 miles away. So I do understand that pain and I am so sorry. It is devastating.  :hug:
Title: Re: Invalidation by FOO
Post by: FredrickaGoshlox on June 20, 2015, 11:16:16 PM
I'm so sorry you went through it as well. As much as it hurt you, and I know it must have, I hope you feel it was for the best that they left. I now feel it is best that my FOO left me, although it does produce shame when your own FOO leaves you. I hope you are on a good healing journey. Without them. With people who REALLY appreciate and love you, as you deserve.

Looking back, when I was still very young and first starting therapy, I would tell the therapists, "Oh, my mother was a GREAT mother. It was me. I was just a terrible child."

I look back and shake my head. An infant has terrible, malicious intent? A little girl? Really? Because I had early depression and tantrums and didn't listen because I had no boundaries or rules and desperately needed a firm but gentle hand? You didn't hold me because I stiffened?

That's the stuff of attachment disorder, which is trauma related.

I am sorry for anyone who has gone through that and is told "it wasn't so bad."

If you read "A Boy Called It" you know his very sad story. He was taken by social services at age twelve and his skin was so thin his bones shown. He had been starved. Yet two of his four brothers insist "it wasn't that bad." I kid you not.

The scapegoat can be badly abused while other kids are not.

I will never again let my siblings anywhere near me. The last time and only time I will see them is when my father passes away and I will be surrounded by my real family---husband and kids. Nobody will go near me. And that's it.

I feel like my siblings are doing t  he abuse all over again. My sister in particular tells everyone I'm crazy and abusive when she has as many problems as I do. Same parents, that's why. Denial is not just a river.

Thank you for responding. I really appreciate if your kindness and understanding.
Title: Re: Invalidation by FOO
Post by: tiasarah on June 21, 2015, 11:36:10 PM
My mom gaslights me. If I ever point out to her anything she's done or said that hurt my feelings, she will deny ever having said it and say "Don't put words in my mouth!" But I know she remembers it, because it gets back to me from my sisters that she went immediately and talked to them about why she said it and what she really meant. She's just getting "her side" on the record though; she isn't really sorry she said or did any of the things and she certainly won't apologize to me for doing or saying them. If she were really interested in me, she'd come to ME to get "her side" on the record.  Her latest tactic is to accuse me of emotionally abusing her for jumping over the boundaries she's set for me. That's really rich, because I was never allowed to have any boundaries of my own growing up, and when I complain that she's jumped over the ones I've set now, she tries to turn it around into me hurting her.

My next younger sister insists that I'm responsible for the hurt I've caused my mom by being absent from her life. She tells me my mom is worried literally sick about my absence from the family (which she, in part, made necessary) and that I should take responsibility for the hurt I've caused everyone by backing away from my FOO. I'm sorry, but I can't take responsibility for their feelings. If I'm responsible for their feelings, then it's only fair that they be responsible for mine; and nobody's lining up to take responsibility for mine. So I'll be responsible for my own feelings, since they're under my control; they can be responsible for their own feelings. If they've taken offense at me not wanting to be around my ex-husband, who is invited to EVERY family event whether he has the kids with him or not, then that offense is something THEY have chosen to take from my actions. But it shouldn't surprise me that my family has taken offense at it. My mom still thinks I got divorced at her, in order to make her look bad in front of her friends. (I know some of her friends... they're totally not like that. It's all her.)
Title: Re: Invalidation by FOO
Post by: FredrickaGoshlox on June 22, 2015, 11:47:28 PM
This is so typical in these families. People say your reality isn't real. The siblings who may not have been the scapegoat insist Mom is swell and it is YOU. Family members blame the scapegoats for almost anything, even though the abuse usually began in the crib. So it's an infant's fault that the mother never loved her and gave her what he or she needed to attach and love right? Baiting, gaslighting, namecalling, divide and is the rule in unloving families, yet many times the abuser is worshipped by some of the family membes and sometimes they even deny she was abusive.

This is not our faults nor is it your responsibility to make Mom feel better if you know she is bad for you. I wish I had dumped my FOO right after I left the house, but I was under the illusion that they were good and I was bad. And I had no core self. I took on the needs of everybody else and was a total mess in my 20's and early 30's. It took a Codapendency Group, a boyfriend with ideas that were alien to me (such as not sticking around people, even family, who mistreat you) and a brand new second marriage to a loving man to learn what true love and acceptance is. And, trust me, it was so hard to accept that I almost broke if off with my now husband many times before finally getting the gumption to tie the knot.

My mother hated him because she called to pick info from my then minor son, whom she almost never saw, and my hub called her back to tell her to stop it. Well!!!! That was abuse!You never tell Mother to stop and, darn it, how dare he call for me, even though I asked him to because she upset me so much, and how dare he stick up for me??? She didn't want ANYONE sticking up for me. And in my very small (fortunately) FOO, nobody did. My life is very peaceful and drama free without them. But sometimes old tapes still play in my head and I have to talk back to them.

My sister is on another site calling me borderline. The sad part of it is, she has way more problems than I do and has a miserable life too.

I don't feel responsible for her happiness. I tried to help her and she turned on me. I'm so done with all of them.

Don't feel bad if you are also done. You have support here.
Title: Re: Invalidation by FOO
Post by: Kizzie on June 23, 2015, 09:11:24 PM
Hi Fredricka - SG here too and lots of invalidation, gas lighting, triangulation, all the lovely things PD FOO do including smear campaigns by my covert NPDM.  I just leave them to themselves and the big sticky PD web they are all caught in.  I actually feel sorry they are caught in that web and don't even seem to know it. So be it though, I am free and I love it.  :yes:
Title: Re: Invalidation by FOO
Post by: Salsera on June 24, 2015, 02:47:36 AM
Hi Fredricka - SG here too and lots of invalidation, gas lighting, triangulation, all the lovely things PD FOO do including smear campaigns by my covert NPDM.  I just leave them to themselves and the big sticky PD web they are all caught in.  I actually feel sorry they are caught in that web and don't even seem to know it. So be it though, I am free and I love it.  :yes:

Me too! :cheer:
Title: Re: Invalidation by FOO
Post by: Kizzie on June 24, 2015, 04:47:24 AM
Hey Salsera, it's been a while.  Welcome back  :hug:
Title: Re: Invalidation by FOO
Post by: Salsera on June 24, 2015, 10:56:34 AM
Hey Salsera, it's been a while.  Welcome back  :hug:

Thank you, Kizzie!

Fredricka, it is eery how these PD families are so similar. You are not alone. I was the lifelong SG, and I was treated miserably. I think the invalidation and gaslighting was the worst. I am 2 years NC with NM and all of FOO. NGCbro was an abusive bully, trained to do a lot of NM's dirty work, and I loathed him. My other NGCbro was recruited onto "team against Salsera" and I noticed that in just a few years, he was copying the bully's abuse of me. I was humiliated to my face, smeared, blamed, you name it.

After 2 years of NC, I am soooo much better. I don't care one bit about any of them, what they say about me, to whom, what's going on in their lives, nothing. I left to protect myself, and now I am safe. I avoid triggers, and to do so I have to ignore holidays, not look at photographs, and do things that may be considered sad or lonely. But it is worth it, because I am no longer being abused.

I still sometimes feel a little angry that I don't have a family. And never did. But, I'm ok without them. And better than ok without the abuse and anxiety.
Title: Re: Invalidation by FOO
Post by: FredrickaGoshlox on June 24, 2015, 03:01:04 PM
Thank so much, all of you.

It is hard for me to believe that my sister and brother saw ME as the abusive one. uBPD mother mistreated my father too. Now he was not perfect and could be baited into anger, and she knew this so she DID it, over and over again. I was the sensitive, dreamy, learning disabled child who threw tantrums and was difficult. She actually told me that, "When I was pregnant, I felt nothing and all my friends told me I'd feel something once I held you, but when I did hold you, I felt nothing. Absolutely nothing." She did not hold me, per herself, because I stiffened in her arms so she propped a bottle, usually of chocolate milk because I didn't like formula.I had over 30 cavities at my first dental appointment. In spite of all the chocolate milk, I still have my haphazard baby book and it says I weighed only 17 lbs. at one year. Failure to thrive anybody? My graddaughter is not heavy and she is almost one and weighs about 23. But she is loved.

My mother told me I was stupid, selfish, lazy, never thought of anyone but myself (meaning I didn't always do things that pleased her), and most of all was "baaaaaaaaaaad." Those are the voices I still hear unless I use my coping skills to talk back to them. I have had symptoms of trauma all my life, but did not own them because "My mom was a good mom. I was just a bad kid."

And my sister is just like her. She reminds me of her so much.

The funny thing is, my sister accuses ME of doing Scorched Earth for posting on anonymous webistes to heal.  I never give out info about her or talk to people who really know her, but s he still thinks I'm going scorched earth on her and has asked her borderline group if this is what borderlines do.

Whatever. Again, her life is miserable.She can't get close to anyone if it entails intimacy or emotional honesty. I am grateful I had the insight to know something was "off" early in my life or I would not have my wonderful self-made family today.Any of you younger people who say you don't have a can and will. You can make your own family. Just be sure you are healed enough to not freak out if your SO is able to give you real intimacy. I had a big problem with that for a long time so my first marriage was pretty icky.

Thanks again for all the support.

I don't miss my small FOO at all. As my therapist said, they only offer invalidation and drama. Who needs that?