“Mother’s love is bliss, is peace, it need not be acquired, it need not be deserved. If it is there, it is like a blessing; if it is not there it is as if all the beauty had gone out of life.” — Erich Fromm
Can motherhood and abuse co-exist together, unthinkable, but sometime possible. There is a very thin line between discipline and abuse. In today’s world who needs a mom, everyone want a super mom, juggling all the responsibilities without compromising on any one ( of course with a lady like grace and poise!! it goes without saying). In this process sometime we happen to vent out all our frustration unintentionally on our family especially on kids. Though not fair for our kids, it happens with every mom.
However the important thing is Unintentional and Occasional. But when these outburst become a intentional pattern then it comes under the category of abuse. Now the question is how can we identity an abusive mother.
Generally mothers put their children’s needs above their own, ( no contest with Bollywood mothers like Nirupa Roy) but an abusive (physical/emotional) mom would do the opposite. Her own interests are prioritized over her child’s, her actions do not reflect those of a mom who is looking out for the best interest of her child.
She bully’s her own child, it could be verbally abusing and hurling insults, rude names and put-downs (by comparisons) at him. Her comments are degrading and she might demean her child publicly just to humiliate him.
She could be very manipulative. Cruelties are couched in loving terms. Aggressive and hostile acts are paraded as thoughtfulness. Selfish manipulations are presented as gifts. Criticism and slander is slyly disguised as concern. To the whole world it seems that she only wants what is best for her child. She is very careful about when and how she engages in her abuses. She’s very secretive, a characteristic of almost all abusers, the times and locations of her worst abuses are carefully chosen so that no one who might intervene will hear or see her bad behavior, and she will seem like a completely different person in public.
She wants to be the center of attention at any cost. Their is a prevailing feeling of insecurity ,which compels her to treat her children as the source for attention and adoration. She always try to steal the spotlight or will try to spoil any occasion where someone else is the center of attention, particularly the child she has cast as the scapegoat.
She tends to be very possessive and controlling and and expect him to run all decisions by her, no matter how little. For her the child no more than a trophy to show off, to cater to her every whims and fancy. She prefers that the child should always be emotionally dependent on her.
Over all she has a necrotic and callous personality without having any empathy for her own child. Sometime it is the result of facing a traumatic childhood herself or some deep scars or some mental illness like addiction etc. In any case it completely ruins her child’s life for years to come.