A Mother's Love Denied



Meet Your New Mommy

Ellery & Linda Batchelder WeddingI was willing to love her, to accept her from day one but she did not accept me. I was only three and a half years old. It was the day of her wedding to my father. My brother, two sisters and I were in the care of a dear woman we called "Pa." She kept the four of us during the interim of the divorce and remarriage which was just a matter of months.  The first time I remember meeting my step-mother, she was in her wedding dress. The two of them had stopped by to visit the children I asume because it is very unlikely they would have taken us on their honeymoon if they even had one.


When I was a young girl my Daddy was my world. I trusted him. In my eyes he was my protector. I believed in him. Whatever he said I would comply. He introduced his new wife to us children. He said, "Meet your new Mommy!" In my open and genuine love, adoration, and trust for my father I was willing to accept this woman as my mother. If my father said it everything would be alright. I greeted her with the words, "Hi, Mommy!" I suppose it must have been a shock for this nineteen year old bride to be thrust into motherhood on her wedding day. I wonder did he even tell her about us before hand, all four of us? I do not remember anyone saying anything after that, only silence filled the room. I suppose it might have been shocking to all the adults present. She said nothing to me and to this day has never reciprocated love towards me.

It could have been different had she embraced my siblings and I.

Part 3

Go Back Read Part 1 The story of my birth mother

Go Back Read Part 2 The story of my parent's divorce

Denied a Mother's Love

All my childhood days I longed for a Mother's Love but never experienced it. Eventhough I had both a step-mother and a birth mother still I had not not known the tender love of a Mother. Two women in my life, but nobody to love me the way a Mother loves her own. At least, that was the story told to me by my father. I was the child who always asked "Why?" I was full of questions. The answers I recieved then did not satisfy my longing for the most tender of relationships, that of a Mother and child. When I began asking my father about my real mother his answers were short, and lacking details but the story was always the same. He told us that our mother left us, she didn't love us. It is a painful thing to hear that your own parents want nothing to do with you.

 

Betty & Debbie Batchelder

 

The first glimpse of a Mother's tenderness that I can remember came when my step-mother had a child of her own. Being only 3 1/2 years old at the time of the divorce I only had but a couple memories when my parents were still together. I was just six years old observing how special that baby was to her and at the same time realized that she never showed that same tenderness and affection for my brother, two sisters and I. The four of us were just another woman's children. We were a burden to her. We always seemed to be in her way, crowding her life. We were always told, "Go outside and play!" even on really hot and humid days. I remember one particular hot day when I wanted to go inside to play but she yelled at us and told us to stay outside. It was so very hot that I sought for shade underneath a parked car in the yard.  I may have been a very young child but I understood very clearly that there was no room in her heart for any of us, Dad's children. Her two boys were "hers" and the four of us were "his", just like bathroom towels, inanimate objects. We meant nothing to her. She was very protective of her baby and if we ever came near it she would yell at us to stay away from the baby. I think we each resented that first baby. One of my sisters admitted to poking or pinching the baby when she wasn't looking.

 

The 5th Child

Watching her caress and admire her baby with such tenderness only made my longing to know my own birth mother all the more. I continued to push for answers. Where is my mother? Where does she live? When will I see her again? When will she visit again? When his response did not give satisfactory answers I formed more inquiries. Can I talk to her on the phone? Can I write her? Why did you divorce? Finally my father gave me permission to talk to her over the phone. I asked for her address so I could write to her. Then I began writing letters to her. I liked writing letters better than talking to her on the phone because then nobody was listening in on the conversation. I felt more free to speak to her through letters, writing whatever I felt like saying.

 

 

The Most Disappointing Moment

In my desire to know my real mother I wrote to her about an idea I had of her taking the four of us out for a picknick of which she agreed and planned on doing that very thing. I told my siblings of the plan so we were all excited when she showed up for it. But it was not to happen. I guess I failed to mention to my father and step-mother of my great idea. I had no way of knowing that a simple picknick would be an unnacceptable thing to do. That day turned into a huge let down that each of us still remember to this day. When Mother came having all things ready to take her four children out for a picknick lunch our step-mother got very upset and the two women had an arguement. Not sure but I think my step-mother thought she was going to steal us away. Not that she really cared about any of us.  As usual we children were ushered out of the house so they could discuss the matter. We heard the raised voices of the two women argueing. We had our hopes of having a wonderful private moment with our own mother dashed to peices on that day. It did not dawn on me then but we had never had a single private moment with our own birth mother ever since the divorce. What had my father told our step-mother about our own mother? Why should we be denied a single day or even a few hours alone with her? The events of that day cast a dark cloud on all future visits from our birth mother. We learned that we could never go anywhere with our own mother. We couldn't even have a private conversation without our step-mother listening in so we were never allowed to freely speak our minds or say anything out of line or we would be dealt with later. I swear my step-mother gave her the evil eye everytime she visited which only added to the dicomfort of her visits with us. It made all visits strained and uncomfortable.

 

Children of Divorce

 

As the years drew on the distance between our mother and us children grew further apart. We became strangers to her and she to us. Her visits became less frequent. I began to think that maybe our father had told us the truth about her. Maybe she really didn't care about us. She forgot our birthdays some years, and missed some Christmases. And then she would show up randomly one spring with a whole bunch of presents, some wrapped in Christmas paper. But now that I am in contact with my mother I have learned more about those visits and why they became so infrequent.  After that fateful day of the picknick that was not to be our mother was told to call before she showed up. My mother had made many more visits to us that we never knew about. She called as they requested and told of her pending visits of which they said "OK" but when she arrived she found nobody home. I believe my parents deliberatly hurried us out of the house to take a drive somewhere to avoid her visits on purpose. They deliberatly caused us to miss visits by our mother and perpetuated the hoax by telling us things like, "Well, I guess she forgot your birthday this year. See, she really doesn't care about you." What parent does that to their own children? To deliberatly dissappoint and hurt your own children is unfathomable. No wonder we grew up with so many insecurities.

 

Four Siblings

 

My mother became frustrated and angry that she had called, told them she was coming to visit her children to find nobody home when she arrived. She often had gifts to give us but was denied those visits. She would cry and become so depressed. Time after time it kept happening so sometimes she did not call at all, she would just pop in unexecpectedly which was obvious by my step-mother's reaction, "Not her again!" That explains why the Christmas presents came in the spring and the sporadic and infrequent visits. Our parents were lying to us all through the years denying the one thing we wanted most to know our own birth mother. This went on for years only we never knew, never understood why she forgot our birthdays, why she would give gifts one Christmas and not at other Christmases. We felt forgotten by her. We did not know the game the adults were playing. This also explains those sudden spontaneous drives our family would take. How often I remember my father ushering everyone into the car suddenly out of the blue saying something like "Let's go for a drive," or "It is a nice day for a drive." Sometimes we would drive around the country side with no apparent place to go. We would drive for hours. Sometimes we ended up visiting a relative showing up before the dinner hour and out staying our welcome. My poor aunts some of them having large families of their own, to have unexpected dinner quests, a family of eight that would not leave. The meal most often served was spaghetti or Chop Suey because preparation time was quick and enough could be made to feed a crowd on short notice. As children, we were totally unaware what was happening. We enjoyed those long drives and getting to know our cousins. Only one time I remember showing up at one of the aunts house to be turned away. They wouldn't let us in. Sometimes we would not return home until late in the evening. Now I know, my father's deceitfulness. All of these denied visits took a toil on our mother. She suffered deep depression. We grew up not knowing the real truth but believing that our mother never really care about us. The lack of regular visits seemed to be proof so we became less and less anxious to see her.

Batchelder Children

 

It was tough enough to have peace with a nagging step-mother who never proved her love to us instead used us as slaves to keep the house clean. She became a lazy homemaker because she had three step-daughters to do all the work for her. We cleaned up after meals and did the dishes. We did the laundry and kept the house clean and orderly while she sat in front of the TV all day watching her games shows and afternoon soaps. I suppose that is one of the reasons I hate TV even to this day. My children grew up without a TV. The home I grew up in had the TV on from morning until bedtime, all day long, every day. She would leave the breakfast dishes where we left them waiting for us after school to clean up. The three of us girls were not allowed to go out and play or visit with friends until the house was cleaned. Those random unannouced visits by my real mother became a nuisance, a disturbance in our existence. It created so much stress and strain in our relationships. From the moment she pulled into the yard. All those years had passed and we still felt estranged to our own mother. All appearances said she didn't care about us. We were never afforded a private moment nor could we dare speak our mind or we would pay for it afterwards. Even after the visit was over we had to listen to our step-mother complain and gripe about her unannounced visits even days after the visit. I just wanted peace.

 

 

Debbie BatchelderWhen I was twelve years old I did something that I regret in my effort to keep the peace in the house. My real mother had just pulled into the yard unexpectedly. My step-mother was already complaining. The stress level was high. In my immaturity, thinking of doing something noble I went out to greet my birth mother. She had not even got out of her car yet. I approached her window and said words I wished I had never uttered. I did not know what I was saying or doing. My life was already so strained and stressful. I just wanted to keep the peace. I was forced to live with my step-mother every day who despised me and was always twisting her version of things into the ears of my father turning my own father against me. I did not want any more pain in my life.  My mother had not been a real part of my life up this point so what was the use even trying anymore. Before she could even say a word I told my mother, "Go away and don't ever come back." I cannot imagine how painful that must have been for her to hear those words from her own daughter. She did go away. That was her last visit. I wished that I could have had the opportunity to express that I really did not mean that. I did want to know my own mother, all of my life even into my adult years, even after I became a mother myself. I wanted to know who my real mother was. I wanted her to know me, to meet my wonderful husband, and great children. I wanted her approval because I had lost my father's approval thanks to the working of my step-mother with her twisted version of events of the day. She was jealous of me because at one time I was the apple of my Daddy's eye but she fixed that. She turned him against me making me out to be some evil person in his eyes.

 

Continue to Part 4

 

When I became a Mother I decided to devote myself to the task. I would be there for my children so I chose to be a stay at home mother. I wanted my children to know that I loved them, that they were special to me. No child should grow up in a home where there is no love. Becoming a mother filled my world with so much love and purpose. Read More

 

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