I was a parent four times. There were things that I liked about it and things that I didn’t like about it. I loved caring for the kids during their infant stages. I loved watching them grow, seeing them walk, teaching them things, holding them, sharing my little world with them, etc. I loved the fact that those little people seemed to love me, too. I was someone who grew up not feeling loved, and then I went through some very unloving relationships. So, to me, my kids were the only people in the world who loved me unconditionally. I felt like they were all I had. I loved them too, but apparently, they didn’t believe me.
I wasn’t good at dealing with rebellious male teenagers. Hell, I wasn’t good at dealing with rebellious little ones either, but the teens really took the cake. By the time they got to be teens, I had been so beaten up by men that I wasn’t about to let a child of mine talk to me like one of those dudes who scarred me used to talk to me. Oh, hell no. I was not going to go through that ever again, especially not from a child of mine. So, in the end, I gave up.
I spent years struggling and doing the best I could do considering my situation (abandoned during pregnancy, etc.), but in the end, all I heard was that I didn’t do it good enough. All I got was complaints. I didn’ t provide enough material things, or I didn’t spend enough time with “so and so” because I had to work so much to pay the rent. I didn’t care about them because I didn’t express my love the same way that some other mother may have expressed her love to her kids and blah blah.
I got tired of everyone guessing how I felt and getting it WRONG. I got tired of that ish, so in the end, I just gave up.
All the pressure and scrutiny and ridicule only got worse when I started living my life for Christ. Then I was called a hypocrite, and I was labeled a child abuser and I was this and that. I found myself under constant scrutiny. I found myself constantly being forced to compete with other people’s material wealth when there was no way I could compete with that. I had to compete with grandmothers from hell and an ex who had no respect for the person who brought his child into the world even despite his neonatal torture. I got tired of all that ish. Tired of competing. Tired of defending myself. Tired of the backstabbing. Tired of people trying to turn my kids against me. Tired of other people trying to tell me how to raise them.
I was full of love for my children, but in the end, I just gave up, and it broke my heart. It broke my heart and almost broke me altogether, but I made it. I’m sure they made it, too, and they got the opportunity to see what life was like with someone else raising them.
Do I regret giving up? Sure, but what can I do? Nothing really. All the damage has been done. They were all eventually turned against me 100 percent, and well, me being an absent, silent person probably didn’t help.
If I had it to do all over again, I would have never let that precious little one go no matter how much trash his people talked about me. I would have told them to go straight to hell and just kept on loving my kid, struggling, and surviving. We’d have been just fine because the Lord would have sustained us.
The older boy, the teen, I might have tried to understand his anger or tried to help him more instead of handling it the way that I did. I don’t know. Hindsight is 20/20, they say.
Now I’m middle-aged, and I’d still love the opportunity to do it again and do it right, but it doesn’t look like it’s in the plan for me. I was prompted to write this by something I saw earlier about parents. It made me think about my experience with parenting.