Mother’s re­ac­tion makes date-rape vic­tim fu­ri­ous

Los Angeles Times - - Calendar - Fu­ri­ous Daugh­ter Send ques­tions to Amy Dick­in­son by e-mail to askamy@tribune.com.

Dear Amy: When I was a teenager, I was date-raped, and my mother kicked me out of her home be­cause she didn’t be­lieve my ac­count of what hap­pened to me.

I spent six years pick­ing up the pieces of my life. I have since al­ways doubted my ac­tions and my soul.

Fast for­ward to re­cently. My mother con­fided in me that she too had been dat­er­aped. She had, in fact, re­acted in the ex­act same man­ner that I did.

I want to dis­own this woman. I hate her. Her ac­tions trau­ma­tized me much worse than the ac­tual rape. But here’s the catch: She is very wealthy, and I am a dis­abled vet­eran with sev­eral chil­dren, one of them with spe­cial needs.

If I let my mother know how I feel, I could be jeop­ar­diz­ing a very large in­her­i­tance (seven fig­ures) that could give my chil­dren the good life that she stole from me.

My best friend and my hus­band think I need to with­draw con­tact, but they un­der­stand my prag­ma­tism. Should I dump my mom and go out with a blaze of glory? Or should I pre­tend to love her and wait for the in­her­i­tance to give me warm fuzzies?

Dear Fu­ri­ous: I fail to see how dump­ing your mother per­mits you to go out “with a blaze of glory.” To me, this act seems the op­po­site of glo­ri­ous.

Your fam­ily needs true rec­on­cil­i­a­tion — that is the best and only hon­est legacy to leave to your chil­dren. Fak­ing it for the money will back­fire. Aside from the in­her­i­tance, if you and your mother are able to un­der­stand each other, ev­ery­body wins.

You will make progress if you re­ceive coun­sel­ing to deal with the rape and its af­ter­math and to un­der­stand your mother’s fail­ings, ac­cept her frail­ties and, per­haps, come to for­give her.

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