Willfull Ignorance

I have had it. I AM DONE. This is not irrational Depression and Anxiety anger - this is honest to goodness RIGHTEOUS ANGER that has filled me to the brim and is now spilling out of my very pores while I write this.

It started when I was born. My mom cast herself as the shy one and baby-me as the outgoing one and so I was. I fulfilled my role. As I got older and less and less interested in smoothing her way into a crowd we butted heads. We can skip through the regular teenage mother/daughter stuff to my parent's divorce when I was in my 20's.

We both fell apart. Except I wasn't allowed to fall apart because, "I just can't help you right now". And you know what? That's valid. She couldn't. The fact that she said it as I was sobbing on the floor in her living room was a little harsh, but that was her truth so ok. I called a friend and got a ride home.

I should have learned my damn lesson.

When my mom doesn't want to take the time to figure something out she uses the excuse that she's not technical or that she can't do it. This is bullshit. She is an extremely smart and capable woman who can handle technology on the job perfectly well, but turns into an idiot whenever I'm around to help.

For example: She won't go to the gym unless I walk her through all of the machines. Do I know what they all do? Of course not. I read the instructions. Could she do that just as well? Of course she could.  Do I get anything at all out of this? Nope. Why do I do it? Because she'll whine about it if I don't. But wait, you say, aren't there people who WORK at the gym who do that because it's their JOB? Yes.

She doesn't ever ask how I am. Not ever. She did say to me - when I was in the middle of a panic attack - "I'm just trying to understand". I wanted to scream at her LIAR! I still want to scream at her.

This morning I got an email from her asking me to help a family friend, S. S has a niece with PPD who just went on Zoloft and she was looking for some information and support for her. S wanted to know if I would be willing to talk to her and share some of my experiences. Of course I am! I told her to please give S all of my contact info and the blog address and all of it. I hate that yet another mother has to go through this darkness.

And yet. All of the information that I just gave to her again today I had given to her when I was first diagnosed and again when I first started this blog. She's never read any of it. She read one blog post because it started a little bit of a family fight and she even said at the time that she, "keeps forgetting to read this".

I am fighting for my life. Every day. I may make jokes and sometimes I talk about other things in this page but let's just be clear right now: This is a fight to stay alive and to be healthy. The fact that my own mother does not care enough to do a damn Google search makes me livid and anguished in equal measure. The fact that she then claims to want to understand makes me angry to an extent that no one has created words to express.

Of course I will help the new mother. I am grateful for the chance to help her and I am grateful that she has someone in her life who is reaching out. But my mother should not have needed to ask. My mother should have been able to say - here are the things I have read to help my daughter with her illness. This is what I have found out about HOW TO SAVE THE LIVES of women with Postpartum Depression and Anxiety.

I would give up every thing she has ever bought me and every moment of babysitting she has done if she would just take it upon herself to read one damn thing about this disease in my mind that wants me dead. Or if she even knew what the fight was about…

Graeme Seabrook