Being Women

Is A Mother Always Good? Can There Be Bad Mothers Too?

Are mothers always the self-sacrificing, noble souls who are there to guide their children? Can there be bad mothers?

“Maa!” I hurriedly rushed to her after returning from the trip with my relatives and narrated how those people had ill-treated me throughout the journey.

My mother refused to believe in me…Does it make her bad?

It was the last week of December, and terribly cold. They had made me sit in a narrow strip behind the driver’s seat in the white ambassador. I could feel the biting wind but could do nothing to protect myself. They even made me bathe in the freezing water early in the morning. At one tourist spot, they made fun of my body weight in front of the guide. All this and many more……But my mother nonchalantly inferred that I was cooking up stories. My relatives were too kind and nice to everyone around them.

That was perhaps, the first nail in the coffin of what was supposed to be the most cherished bond between a daughter and her mother. Since then, I barely communicated with her.

The decay of a sacred relationship…

I still remember when I had acute pain in my ears, I tried to conceal it as much as possible. Only when it got extreme, I informed her.

Once, in a relative’s house in Durgapur, I was groped by someone. I pinched back the man but could never share the incident with my mother.

A mother who was never there for me!

When I stood second in my school and was awarded, my mother didn’t turn up. No, she wasn’t a working woman, but she chose relatives over me. When I saw the parents of all the winners turn up for the event, I could barely control my tears.

But then, who cared? Not my mother…!

A mother who never knew her child’s desires.

From an 11-year-old girl to a 38-year-old woman, I have never shared anything with my mother except for an emergency. When my marriage was fixed, she had no inclination to know what was going on in my heart. How could I share with this woman (who had broken my trust) that I can’t trust a stranger with my life? But, as a ‘good girl’ who was still expecting her mother to acknowledge and appreciate her, I complied.

The husband – A replica of my mother

Imagine my fate, when I realised that my husband behaves the same as my mother. After childbirth, I have begun to dwindle into oblivion. Every day passes with him accusing me of wasting his money and time. For the sake of my welfare, he disciplines me. He disregards my emotions, saying it’s all due to my weight and hormones. He is very well aware of how weird I act during the pre-period and during the period days, but he still chooses to attack me with his caustic words. And, ever since, my parents-in-law have turned up, he has been behaving strangely. In a bid to serve them and appear as an ideal son, he insults and abuses me at every opportunity.

But, he doesn’t physically harm me.

Emotional Abuse is trivial…

One day, when things got out of hand, I tried to commit suicide. He immediately called my mother. When she arrived, I chose to remain silent, for she hadn’t turned up for me. She was there out of her sense of duty. True to the purpose of her visit, she simply lectured on what should be done. My interests, my happiness, my ‘bhalo thaka’ (wellness) or my mental health did not matter at all. Her lecture taught me,

  • How I was inviting depression into my life,
  • How I was destroying the peace in the house,
  • How I was neglecting my child,
  • How I was focussing on lesser matters like emotional abuse.

Surprisingly, not for once, did she advise her son-in-law to mend his ways. She considered him a responsible and dutiful man. In her words, ‘he provides for me. So, if he becomes angry, it is but, natural. I should bear it all, adjust and compromise.’ Also, the way my mother handled a big family, should have been a learning lesson for me.

She also advised me ‘to open up!’

‘How? Even if I let out a sigh, my husband holds me as a culprit. Then how can I vent out?’

And, opening up to my mother? With the baggage of my childhood trauma, it was impossible.

Mother’s Day : A reminder of my trauma

As Mother’s Day draws nearer, I sit teary-eyed, reading inspiring stories of this precious bond between a daughter and a mother. However, I, myself, can never taste that sweetness. I see my husband with his mother – how beautifully she turns him against me and how he doesn’t waste a minute screaming at me for his mother’s slightest discomfort.

No one can say my mother has neglected me. She has fed me, sent me to school, and pushed me to complete higher studies. She is there for me. Yet, the deep-set vacuum only I can feel and the Almighty can fathom.

Just for the sake of her appreciation and recognition, I have sacrificed my entire life. But, I still remain an unimportant, insignificant dust particle in her life.


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3 Responses

  1. I have also seen mother treating two children differently. In today’s world where women are getting immense support from other woman, it is also important not to look down upon the son while singing praise for the daughter. If it is not ok to say “ladka payda hona chahiye” then it is equally not ok to say “ladki paida honi chahiye”. I don’t believe maa kabhi kumata nahi hoti.

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