I have a dilemma- I can’t tell if I’m being abused or not. I know it sounds ridiculous, but I’ve told a friend what’s happening to me and she seems to think so, and websites I’ve checked have also confirmed this, but it’s just hard to think of my mom as a child abuser.
For starters, I’m 17, so I’m nearly an adult. My mother is an ESTJ and we used to have a great relationship when I was younger, but everything changed after I turned 6, when I started being disruptive in school. I still got perfect marks, but the class moved too slowly for me, so I acted out… and my mom didn’t understand. She started to beat me, not just with her hands, but with belts, clothing hangers, and basically anything she could find. She wanted to “straighten me out”, which she did, but even after I became the model student the beatings continued.
I think it has to do with herself esteem, personally. She has veneers and after they cracked, she felt really bad about herself, plus she struggled with money issues (she’s a single mom, but refuses to get a job, so we live off of the child support my Dad gives us). I think she took it out on me, but frankly, it’s still no excuse. A 7 year old kid shouldn’t have a dozen angry red welts across her chest just because her mother got upset. Anyway, the bottom line is, she still hits me to this day. Sometimes she’ll chase me around with a hammer or a potato masher, and other times she’ll settle for her bare hands, but the result is always the same. I’ve been slapped, punched, thrown to the ground and stomped upon- you name it, she’s done it. I used to hate changing for gym because the other kids would inquire about my bruises, and my friends know that something’s going on, but our just too polite to say anything. I’ve shown up to school with scratches all over my face and bloody eyes, and I can tell that they don’t believe me when I say “I fell”, but they don’t inquire further.
The thing is, I feel like I don’t deserve to be treated this way. I’m an honors student who gets straight A’s. I don’t drink or smoke or do crazy teenager-y things (mainly because my mom won’t let me go anywhere, but still) and all my teachers tell me that I’ve a great kid. I’m very polite and respectful. I’ve even tried talking to my mom about how I feel and encouraging her to do the same, but it’s rarely worked. Normally she’ll say “F**ck you”, or “shut the f**ck up, no one wants to hear your whining”, which just makes me feel bad about myself. And I KNOW what you’re thinking. If she treats you like this, and calls you a “stupid b*tch” and tells you to jump off a bridge and kill yourself, and if she beats you, destroys your possessions, and laughs in your face, saying “no one will believe you if you tell”, then how can it NOT be abuse? But the thing is, it’s not all the time.
Sometimes, my mother is as nice as can be. She hugs me, packs my lunch, and says “I love you.” And then other times, she’ll change completely, as if she were a different person, and do all the things that I mentioned before. It's super confusing. I know she has a personality disorder (OCD) and my grandma (ENTJ) was also pretty mean to her and her sisters growing up. She burned her hand with an iron when she was 3, hit her with a 2-by-4, threw an ashtray at her head, broke my aunt’s arm- the list goes on and on. So that might have influenced her. I don’t really know. I’m just sad and tired of living this way. Any advice from other INFPs who have ESTJ parents? And is this really abuse if it's not all the time?