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Resentment Towards Parents

S

sunkensoul

New member
Joined
Sep 15, 2020
Messages
4
Location
Richmond, VA
Hi all,

I am new to this forum and I am still learning to navigate the pages, so I apologize if this subject has already been addressed. It's something I have been struggling with for a long time.

There is no handbook for parenting; everyone makes the best decisions for their children based on what they know. In my case, my parents didn't intentionally hurt me, but I certainly felt neglected and ignored as a child. As a teen, when my mental illnesses really came to the forefront, they dismissed my cries for help as teenage angst even though I begged for professional help. It was a very, very dark time for me. I had to take my mental health into my own hands when I was 21, and ever since then I have been the one teaching them about mental health. I don't think they've done any research without me spoonfeeding them. I've hardly felt supported. Unsurprisingly, I was hospitalized last year, and even still they have hardly done an adequate job making me feel cared for.

They didn't hurt me on purpose. But through their ignorance... I feel like they set me up for failure. I've been suffering emotionally for as long as I can remember. I love them -- and they aren't bad people -- but I haven't been able to forgive them. I kind of want to confront them, but I'm not sure what good that would do. A confrontation won't give me my childhood back.

Has anyone else felt this way? How have you processed these feelings?
I’ve battled these feelings of resentment and rage towards my parents, as they failed to provide me safety and nurturing. Underneath the rage was an ache for understanding and nurturing. I wanted my voice to be heard. I wanted my pain and suffering to be seen. Every situation is different, but for me when I learned to accept and love my parents as they were, without wanting to change them is when the pained eased. It did not take it away by any means, but I could now let them support me on my journey to healing. Their intentions were never to cause pain. Everyone has their own demons and it’s unfortunate the wounds of trauma trickle down from one generation to the next. Sending love and an open heart.
 
C

Coolname

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 3, 2019
Messages
590
Location
UK
While I accept the experiences of everyone who has posted here, I want to give a counter view.

Yes, parents are just people living their lives as best they can. However, not every parent does their best for their children. For some, the neglect is because their children hardly matter to them. For some, the mistreatment is deliberate, they resent and bully their children. For others, they neglect or abuse because they want to, their childrens wants and needs simply do not matter to them.

I agree that most of us have a deep and sometimes unfulfilled need to feel accepted, understood and cared for by our parents. However, giving unconditional love to them is not a solution for everyone, if the response to that love is dismissal, manipulation or mistreatment, then that need will still not be fulfilled. Instead, it may reinforce a lack of self worth.

There is a cult of forgiveness in our culture that can be counter-productive. For me, forgiveness must be based on contrition and a genuine attempt to change. If your parents are unable or unwilling to engage in a constructive relationship with you (or if you are unable to engage in a constructive relationship with them), then it may be best to remove them from your life.
 
K

karl7

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 9, 2013
Messages
569
Hi all,

I am new to this forum and I am still learning to navigate the pages, so I apologize if this subject has already been addressed. It's something I have been struggling with for a long time.

There is no handbook for parenting; everyone makes the best decisions for their children based on what they know. In my case, my parents didn't intentionally hurt me, but I certainly felt neglected and ignored as a child. As a teen, when my mental illnesses really came to the forefront, they dismissed my cries for help as teenage angst even though I begged for professional help. It was a very, very dark time for me. I had to take my mental health into my own hands when I was 21, and ever since then I have been the one teaching them about mental health. I don't think they've done any research without me spoonfeeding them. I've hardly felt supported. Unsurprisingly, I was hospitalized last year, and even still they have hardly done an adequate job making me feel cared for.

They didn't hurt me on purpose. But through their ignorance... I feel like they set me up for failure. I've been suffering emotionally for as long as I can remember. I love them -- and they aren't bad people -- but I haven't been able to forgive them. I kind of want to confront them, but I'm not sure what good that would do. A confrontation won't give me my childhood back.

Has anyone else felt this way? How have you processed these feelings?
hi silverkelpie.....forgiving your apartents will help you heal, holding on to bitterness just screw you round......im the product of a dysfunctional family myself, my father was a alcoholic and there was always strife at home, but they meant well and did not mean to screw me round.
 
B

bpd2020

Well-known member
Joined
May 25, 2020
Messages
3,621
Location
England
While I accept the experiences of everyone who has posted here, I want to give a counter view.

Yes, parents are just people living their lives as best they can. However, not every parent does their best for their children. For some, the neglect is because their children hardly matter to them. For some, the mistreatment is deliberate, they resent and bully their children. For others, they neglect or abuse because they want to, their childrens wants and needs simply do not matter to them.

I agree that most of us have a deep and sometimes unfulfilled need to feel accepted, understood and cared for by our parents. However, giving unconditional love to them is not a solution for everyone, if the response to that love is dismissal, manipulation or mistreatment, then that need will still not be fulfilled. Instead, it may reinforce a lack of self worth.

There is a cult of forgiveness in our culture that can be counter-productive. For me, forgiveness must be based on contrition and a genuine attempt to change. If your parents are unable or unwilling to engage in a constructive relationship with you (or if you are unable to engage in a constructive relationship with them), then it may be best to remove them from your life.
I totally agree with this. I hate being told to forgive my parents as they are my parents. I am glad you posted this.
 
R

Rex Smith

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 30, 2020
Messages
194
Location
San Diego
I have nothing to do with my parents. From all the posts I've read about everyones families, mine were saints. I'd have taken a baseball bat and broke my parents legs if they have done the stuff many of parents did to you all. Sounds like a bunch of bullies with the title of mom and dad.

Wtf do people feel they need them in their life or even forgive them?! They're just people like everyone else and should be held accountable for their actions.

Forgiveness, guilt, and remorse are only words that been programmed in your mind to control you. If you really want to heal, tell them when they die your going to take a shit in the urn their ashes are in. Walk out and don't contact them.

The only way to stop being bullied is to confront them at their level. You're never going to gain their respect or be treated as an equal otherwise.

No wonder there's so many people with depression and anxiety disorders.
 
C

Coolname

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 3, 2019
Messages
590
Location
UK
I totally agree with this. I hate being told to forgive my parents as they are my parents. I am glad you posted this.
Thanks, I hate it too, rant follows :rolleyes:

One answer to people who insist on forgiveness of parents is to reframe the situation. ie. If you had a husband or wife who treated you that way today, would the advice from those same people be to end the relationship?

What if it was a teacher or a neighbour who treated you that way when you were a child, would the advice be to forgive and forget? To be there for them?

I get that being a parent is hard, I get that it is stressfull and that parents are just people with their own flaws and weaknesses. I get that many parents have their own psychological / emotional problems. What I do not get is repeatedly taking your own problems and frustrations out on the most vulnerable people you know.

I am angry about how I was treated as a child. I find that anger empowering, not damaging.

Putting childhood to one side, I value myself enough not to want people in my life who consistently treat me badly or who I simply cannot stand. I value myself enough not to want the emotional turmoil of being around certain people. Putting the label family on these people does not change that. My life is much better, in every way, without my family being a part of it.
 
B

bpd2020

Well-known member
Joined
May 25, 2020
Messages
3,621
Location
England
Thanks, I hate it too, rant follows :rolleyes:

One answer to people who insist on forgiveness of parents is to reframe the situation. ie. If you had a husband or wife who treated you that way today, would the advice from those same people be to end the relationship?

What if it was a teacher or a neighbour who treated you that way when you were a child, would the advice be to forgive and forget? To be there for them?

I get that being a parent is hard, I get that it is stressfull and that parents are just people with their own flaws and weaknesses. I get that many parents have their own psychological / emotional problems. What I do not get is repeatedly taking your own problems and frustrations out on the most vulnerable people you know.

I am angry about how I was treated as a child. I find that anger empowering, not damaging.

Putting childhood to one side, I value myself enough not to want people in my life who consistently treat me badly or who I simply cannot stand. I value myself enough not to want the emotional turmoil of being around certain people. Putting the label family on these people does not change that. My life is much better, in every way, without my family being a part of it.
Very good compassion. We are never told to forgive abusive partner so why should we forgive abusive parents? I totally agree with all you have written.
 
N

Nukelavee

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 17, 2019
Messages
2,160
Location
London, ON
For me, forgiveness must be based on contrition and a genuine attempt to change. If your parents are unable or unwilling to engage in a constructive relationship with you (or if you are unable to engage in a constructive relationship with them), then it may be best to remove them from your life.
Absolutely.
There is a cult of forgiveness in our culture that can be counter-productive.
I think the issue is that some people try to exploit the concept of forgiveness. The push the narrative that they are entitled to forgiveness, and that forgiveness is a blank cheque, and then abuse it.

Plus, in my view, being forgiven isn't a right.

When it comes to forgiving your parents, I think it comes down to what it takes to make you feel better, overall. And, yes, it's your right not to forgive, although sometimes forgiving helps give closure.
Forgiveness, guilt, and remorse are only words that been programmed in your mind to control you. If you really want to heal, tell them when they die your going to take a shit in the urn their ashes are in. Walk out and don't contact them.
In your opinion. In my opinion, holding on to anger and letting your hatred fester is counter productive. There's a point where not letting things go can cause you more damage.

Just because you claim to be a master manipulator who feels nothing like that, doesn't doesn't mean that facade will work for everybody.
 
G

Girl interupted

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 17, 2018
Messages
2,121
Thanks, I hate it too, rant follows :rolleyes:

One answer to people who insist on forgiveness of parents is to reframe the situation. ie. If you had a husband or wife who treated you that way today, would the advice from those same people be to end the relationship?

What if it was a teacher or a neighbour who treated you that way when you were a child, would the advice be to forgive and forget? To be there for them?

I get that being a parent is hard, I get that it is stressfull and that parents are just people with their own flaws and weaknesses. I get that many parents have their own psychological / emotional problems. What I do not get is repeatedly taking your own problems and frustrations out on the most vulnerable people you know.

I am angry about how I was treated as a child. I find that anger empowering, not damaging.

Putting childhood to one side, I value myself enough not to want people in my life who consistently treat me badly or who I simply cannot stand. I value myself enough not to want the emotional turmoil of being around certain people. Putting the label family on these people does not change that. My life is much better, in every way, without my family being a part of it.
Totally agree with this and your other post in this thread. There's only one problem: not forgiving creates a kind of inner poison. It doesn't hurt the ones who deserve it, it instead makes you sick.

If you are bpd, chances are that your parents caused this illness. There is no argument, debate or logical presentation that will make them suddenly wake up and say "oh wait, you're right, I am responsible for years of abuse/neglect." It just isn't going to happen.

You can take distance, and for most with BPD this is the best route. It gives you a chance to escape the toxicity and develop your own sense of self.

But that resentment and anger will never go away. No matter how far away you are from them.

When you forgive, you aren't doing it for them. You're doing it for yourself, to free yourself.
 
C

Coolname

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 3, 2019
Messages
590
Location
UK
Totally agree with this and your other post in this thread. There's only one problem: not forgiving creates a kind of inner poison. It doesn't hurt the ones who deserve it, it instead makes you sick.

If you are bpd, chances are that your parents caused this illness. There is no argument, debate or logical presentation that will make them suddenly wake up and say "oh wait, you're right, I am responsible for years of abuse/neglect." It just isn't going to happen.

You can take distance, and for most with BPD this is the best route. It gives you a chance to escape the toxicity and develop your own sense of self.

But that resentment and anger will never go away. No matter how far away you are from them.

When you forgive, you aren't doing it for them. You're doing it for yourself, to free yourself.
Thanks. I am happy of accept that is true for many people. I do not see it as true for me. I do not hold resentment or bitterness, I don't want anyone to change, I just want as little to do with them as possible. I hold anger, I am entitled to that anger, but I don't want to hurt anyone. One day, maybe the anger will run its course. For now, it is a genuine feeling and it is beneficial for me to embrace it. It is self-affirming, life affirming, and a healing force.
 
G

Girl interupted

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 17, 2018
Messages
2,121
If it empowers you then go with it. Do what helps you. Xo
 
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