Saturday, June 11, 2011

From the dark side: My confession of hatred....Part two

N.B: Some contents may offend sensitive readers

By just typing that last post, digging deep into the crevices of my families history fulled me with anger and bitter resentment. The stupidity of some of those people.....(my family members) astounds me. I am just showing you the ugly side of things. In truth my family in those days were like the American South before the civil war. There were great adventures, grand parties, unbelievable stories of wealth and luxury and eccentric personalities. Growing up my sister and I often felt like we had come late to some big party. We came when all the fun had been had and everyone was suffering from one big hangover.

For the first 18 months of my life it was just my Mom and I . My Dad was always away on business. Other than a few visits by a church friend and my half- brother and half- sister my Mom and I were each other's only companions. Within two months, I had a new baby sister, had moved countries and was living in a massive old house with....both my parents, my sister, my aunt, my two cousins (my aunt hadn't really figured that sex gets you pregnant), my disabled aunt and both my divorced grandparents. My half- brother and half- sister were soon dropped into the mix. One big happy family.

I don't think you'd be surprised if I told you I became a rather disturbed baby. Plus there seemed to be something "funny" about the house we lived in. My Mom thought there were evil spirits living there. I don't know, but throughout our time living there I would wake up most nights screaming in terror. My Mom, exasperated, sleep- deprived and under pressure from my Dad would resort to spankings to get me to stop. I can still remember this. I also suffered from a series of freak accidents- falling down the stars, burning myself, the worst was when I chopped my pinkie off my left hand and had to have it sewn back on.

Because I went from being a little angel to a child possessed by the devil by Mom left the care of my younger sister to my grandmother while she focused on me. Because of this I think my sister became my grandmother's favorite. I didn't have much to do with my grandmother back then but I remember resenting her presence. My Mom would tell me one thing and she would disagree and tell me to do another thing. Life to her was all about acting "proper". She fought openly with my Dad and spoke horribly about him behind his back and in front of me.

My grandmother has lived with my parents for most of the time I have been alive. With the exception of two years where my Dad- in an attempt to get some peace and quiet- rented her a flat half an hour away. Whenever we had to move there was never a question of whether or not she would come with us. It was always assumed. Because she was always there my sister and I always had to share a room. Once the two of us got older and it became obvious that our sharing a room was actually dangerous, we would convert any space in the house we could find, a dinning room etc into a room for my grandmother.

Having grown up in South Africa, during apartheid and especially in a farming community, it was only natural that my grandmother was extremely racist and prejudiced. She would talk about people of a different ethnic race- particularly blacks- as though they were the plague and would refer to them in the most derogatory terms. Before Nelson Mandela was realised from prison in 1990 she had me shit- scared of the man and convinced me he was going to kill all the whites. My grandmother was prejudiced in that if a person looked or dressed a certain way for example they had certain personality traits. Nothing could sway her on this even if the person she was speculating on turned out to be the exact opposite. To add to this sparkling impression I have created, my grandmother was also horribly sexist. Woman were there to get married and pop kids, working was a man's job. Women had to do certain "things" to ensure they got married. It horrified her that I did not want to get married or have children. Her advice on actual marriage was even more absurd...,"You must get pregnant three to six months after your wedding....".

Everything I have mentioned above created the groundwork for a very toxic relationship. The older I got the more my grandmother intruded into my life and tried to force her ideals on me. She constantly contradicted my mother and father and believing herself in charge would tell my sister and I what to do. By the time I reached my teens I couldn't stand her. She fulled me with so much rage that it was hard to remain respectful. I would constantly get into trouble and be punished for the way I treated her. Which obviously fuelled my resentment more. We couldn't get through a day without having two or three fights. Sometime the rage would get so bad it almost got to me slapping her. The worst I ever did was violently push the car seat when she was sitting in front of me. I would yell things at her like "You're an old crone!" or "Old hag!". Particularly in my late teens I treated her very very badly. If I had been a decent person back then I would have noticed that her age was weakening her, while I was getting stronger. All I cared about was that I was finally winning all those fights!.



  1. Stephi you know you just keep me hanging on a cliffhanger at the end of a TV show. I look forward to part three!

  2. I didn't mean for it to be like a suspense thriller, its just that it is a long story and I tried to break it up at the right part.

  3. Dealing with a controlling person when you are in a position of dependence is incredibly difficult. Please forgive yourself. You dealt with it the best you knew how. You were trying to protect yourself. It's important to remember that you were fighting against someone trying to take over your life, someone trying to think for you. She was trying to exercise an unrighteous amount of control. You have healthier strategies now, but then you probably didn't have many options. Don't judge your actions from then by what you know now.

    misssrobin --