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Jennifer Obiuwevbi: Dear Mom, Your Words Can Make or Break Me

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I once heard a story about a Caucasian girl who killed herself because her mom’s friend told her she was too fat.

In her suicide letter, she explained how she wasn’t sad because of what her mom’s friend said, but the fact that her mom stood by and laughed while she said it, and didn’t do a thing to defend her honour.

She had basically felt her mom didn’t have her back, even as she braced the world in her plus-size figure.

There is a strong bond between a mother and her child – some think it’s because of the 9 months they spend together inseparably or just the fact that a mom has that nurturing nature. Others think it’s a God-given gift to help mothers cope with raising a child. Be it what it may, over time, that strong bond gets deeper and stronger when she pushes you to life, holds you in her arms and tells you she loves you for the very first time.

And it gets even deeper when she calls you beautiful, her baby, her precious, the best thing in the world and promises to be your number 1 fan for ever.

So it’s funny how that sort of changes when you fail your first test, get caught cheating in class, get your school uniform dirty, spend her change or take your daddy’s meat from the pot.

I once had a neighbor who had 2 kids. Not a day went by where she didn’t hurl abusive words at them – idiot, fool, bastard, ‘ode’ good for nothings, stupid, useless, ‘oloriburuku‘ – you name it; it was called at least once. But do you know the odd thing? When they turned 9 & 7, she threw the biggest party for them and even gave a speech about how her kids are the light of her life.

I have since come to realize that the words of parents are like a double-edged sword; they can be used to break or build a nation. A mother’s positive affirmation for her child goes a long way, both mentally and spiritually, to make that child either stand tall or shrink & hide.

Growing up, a child starts to form an opinion of self and this perception is rooted in what they hear as they grow up, and how you see them has a whole. It acts as a foundation for how they start to see themselves. I think if you call your child useless long enough, they just might end up being just that.

It can be a vicious cycle that gets passed down from your generation to your kids, and their kids; breaking bonds and hearts and spirits and will as the years go by. This cycle is a destroyer; and you just need to make sure you plant a seed and not a weed.

***

In recent times I came across a video created by BuzzFeed that got me thinking about this same topic. Titled “Things I Wish I Could Tell My Mom” – the video centers on the many times a mother’s words can either make or break her children’s will to live life to the fullest.

Watch!

Photo Credit: Dreamstime/Spotmatik | Video Credit: BuzzFeedVideo

Jennifer is the Beauty Editor & Style Representative of BellaNaija.com. Get in touch - Send an email to: beauty(at)bellanaija.com or style(at)bellanaija.com | Follow us on Instagram: @bellanaijabeauty OR @bellanaijastyle | Follow us on Twitter: @bellanaijastyle

101 Comments

  1. Hmm

    August 5, 2015 at 2:17 pm

    This hit home very hard. I love my mom and all, but one of the reasons I distance myself from her now that I am older is all the verbal abuses she rained on me when I was younger (and had nowhere to run to). Even before I started having boyfriends, she would call me an “ashewo” for talking to a boy, and say things like “they will only use you and dump you”. Now the story of my “dating”life hasn’t been anything more than what she had always said. I have always been “used and dumped”. Now in my mid 20’s she asks me when I would bring a boyfriend home.. I laugh, and have a certain kind of joy when I tell her I am dating no one. (I am fed up of going through the same cycle.)
    I know the average Nigerian girl might say “oh those are normal things moms say” or “don’t blame your mistakes on your mom” and all that. But, in all honestly, I blame her for everything. I never really knew what it meant to be “just friends” with a boy growing up, I didn’t have female friends either. I am the first child, first girl. I had no close relationship with my mom. I experienced my first menstrual period all by myself. Now looking back, I am grateful to have been able to keep seeing her as my mom (even though sometimes I felt she wasn’t). I guess she just had her own way of raising a child, and now in other aspects of my life (apart from relationships), I can say I am glad I am who I am. I just wish she had been the friend she tries to be to me now when I was younger..

    • Ure

      August 5, 2015 at 2:50 pm

      My dear same here….. my mum was not easy with me in my young days. i tried on my part to form a close relationship and she is even trying now but it is just not working out.

      I have corrected her a lot of times but still. In some ways she tries to show she ‘loves’ me but her words are something else….

      I have decided that I am the only one that can make myself sad…. So i just block my ears/the words out when she is not being considerate, changed my mindset to a positive one and moved on.

      I would have loved for us to be more close but oh well…. we will just manage what we have

    • O

      August 5, 2015 at 2:54 pm

      My dear, you owe it to yourself to be who you are meant to be in-spite of. It’s not easy, but you must forgive your mum completely and seek joy. Think of people who succeeded despite the fact that their mothers prostituted them or sold them for money. My ma said a lot of mean things when I was younger, but by the race of God, she has since realised the error of those ways which I think stemmed from how thing were in that era, in some areas. I pray you find the strength to move on sweetie and love her regardless. You’ll have to take it one day at a time, but it’s doable, and you’ll love you more, thereby people will love you more. Don’t give up on finding a good boyfriend, it will happen dear……seek wisdom, knowledge; learn from peoples experiences. As to not having friends, you do not need a lot of friends, just a few. They maybe younger or older, doesn’t matter, just be open and lastly, go out and help people without expecting anything, genuinely care about peoples’ wellbeings, it’s a beautiful thing. There’s so much I would like to share with you, but…. I wish you every joy.

    • mma cee

      August 5, 2015 at 3:07 pm

      Sweety…you would be fine.
      you need to make a conscious decision to have a mind shift and change how you see yourself.
      dont blame your mum for the outcome of your life, you haVe the greater part of the blame to share. And am not trying to make you feel bad
      believe you wont be used and dumped and you wont
      just believe you would have a beautiful life
      i wish you the best in life.
      and at moments like this , i thank GOD for my MUMMY who not only refused to abuse us, taught me to say “i reject it in Jesus name ” anytime someone tells me negative things.
      even when i hated how i looked,she used to tell me how beautiful i am( na lie…i was not attractive o) and how special.
      God bless my mum and all the mums around the globe doing their best and as my mum would say, may we be greater parents than our parents were
      AMEN!!!

    • Ross

      August 5, 2015 at 3:36 pm

      I’m so sorry this was your experience, and NO, it is not normal for a mother to use such words at her children.
      Problem is, in Nigeria a lot of our parents generation grew up in abusive homes/marriages/relationships and didn’t know better because they weren’t as informed as we are and this was ‘the norm’.
      More and more, we are recognising and admitting what psychological abuse we as a people are put under and how we have been so decensitised, we see such abuse as normal.
      A lot of these past generations watch their children growing up with less hardship and are (believe it or not), jealous. I have noticed a lot of mothers recognise a strength in their daughters that they don’t have, and because no one taught them how to be supportive, they try to tear them down.
      How can a mother do that you say? Well, this brings us to a valid question. Is every woman truly a meant to be a mother? NO. A real woman should nurture and protect and develop everything around her to blossom into its full potential. And these abusive mothers are this way because they do not know that their goal should be to develop themselves as Women and everything else will fall into place. You cannot make a good sister, mother, daughter, friend, wife, partner, if you are not a good woman.
      I cannot tell you to forgive her, as this would be presumptuous of me, but I can tell you to examine her situation to try and understand what made her the person she became. It then helps you deal with your disappointment. And as they say, forgiveness is for us, not for the person we are forgiving. 🙂
      All the best dear!

    • Nahum

      August 5, 2015 at 4:05 pm

      Wow!!! Very well said!!!

    • Adaeze

      August 5, 2015 at 6:17 pm

      I know how you feel.
      My Mom, as a matter of fact, both of My Parents were very hard on me growing up. They never appreciated anything I did. Never encouraged or supported me. Insulted me severally and compared me to people; to them that was their own way of encouraging people. It was truly tough. Nothing I did was good enough for them. My Mom was so abusive, she’ll use difficult moments of my life to abuse me, she could use anything no matter how sensitive to abuse me. There was a time one of my siblings did something terribly bad to me, something that everyone despised and everyone agreed it was bad, My Mom covered up the act, and took sides. She’s mainly the reason (well partly), while there’s sibling rilvary in my family today. Because, rather that cautioning the people who were at fault, she’ll blame me. It was very easy for my Mom to accuse me, and blame me, but so difficult to correct the rest of her kids. She’s seeing the consequences today.
      I remember when I was doing NYSC, I had just finished my first degree, a guy came to see me at home, there was nothing My Dad didn’t say to me, the insults and bad comments he made that day, which was in 2009, as a married woman and mother now, I still remember. He called me an asewo, an irresponsible person, he said a lot. My Mom who I told about the visit weeks before, even used it to abuse me afterwards. I told the guy then, who was just my friend then, but now My Husband, he was utterly disgusted. Till today, he still talks about it.
      My Mom wasn’t someone I could confide in, it’s either she used whatever you told her to abuse you when she’s angry with you, or you tell her something, and she tells the rest of the family, My Dad and siblings, and when I get angry, she’ll say “we are family”; she never took responsibility for her faults. I later stopped telling her anything, anything I wanted to tell her, I told the whole family. 2 years before I got married, My Mom made a nasty comment about my boyfriend’s Mom, I felt that if she respected herself, and respected me, and thought about my feelings, she won’t make such a comment. I told her about it, and she insulted me and got angry at the fact that I was angry. The fact that you’re My Mom doesn’t give you the right to abuse my friend’s Mom. From that day, my boyfriend, now My Husband (he got to know about it), changed the way he felt about her. Sad, cause he really loved her. They did things that broke the trust I had in them. My Mom and my sisters, I have 3 sisters. Till today, it’s hard to trust them.
      I remember when My Mom told me to take a step I didn’t want to, she put pressure on me, and said if I did what she wanted me to do, she’ll make sure I get married 1st, (I’m the 1st out of 6 kids), a close pal advised against it, and said that she was being manipulative, and when the time comes, she’s someone who won’t keep to her promise, thank goodness I did not listen to My Mom. I have tried to forgive them all and put those things behind me. But they sure did give me a tough time. Now, I’m a Mom, and I try to be cautious of what I say to my kids. Cause from what I experienced, I know it has lasting horrible consequences. Please, let’s try to put them behind us, and forgive. I understand when certain things happen, even with forgiveness, things never remain the same. But for the sake of the kingdom of heaven, let’s forgive. My love to all those hurt. ?

    • J

      August 6, 2015 at 11:15 am

      sending you loads of hugs, love, and kisses! Pray God help you overcome all of these bad memories and build good ones from now hereon.

    • Tosin

      August 5, 2015 at 10:08 pm

      i think ashewo is cute. i can’t be offended by that one. many people get up in arms, and i wonder why.
      love your comment altogether tho.

    • Abk

      August 6, 2015 at 12:17 pm

      Tosin, Ashewo is NOT cute. What are you saying?! I don’t know which reasonable or God-fearing Parent will call their own child an Ashewo.

    • Temi

      August 6, 2015 at 3:24 am

      I can so relate.. We have similar experiences. I am also a first born. It really messed up my confidence. I eventually got married, still have my battles but working on it. It’s hard to have a relationship with her till now.

    • Oskobin

      August 6, 2015 at 10:00 am

      when i was younger my mother will beat was quick to beat u senseless over the littlest things and after tell me she is doing it bcos she loves me. My mother naggs at every single thing, she takes out her fustration on her children in the most hurtful way. She wants to know all of our business. She does the emotional blackmail thing, threatening to curse us children. I hate to stay home. Im glad everyday when i have to leave the house. My mom is a good person, she is nice and humble but its like shez a two-faced person sometimes. She trained us all by herself. Now its like she expects us to repay her with our life. I love my mom but when i see the kind of rship some moms have with their daughters i wish i had that and im going to do all in my power to be more freindly with my children. So help me God.

  2. Prec

    August 5, 2015 at 2:45 pm

    So many things I could say about this, very moving. I love my mom, but God knows, I’d rather love her from afar sometimes. We grow up in this culture of our parents know everything, we cant say nothing back to them even in respect, we have to do what we are told, but truth is we grow up and now in my 20s, I realized that most of the things I got scolded for and harassed for weight, relationship, every other thing were her own insecurities, like the kind of insults that springs out of her mouth are just ridiculous, and the more I act like i’m not bothered the worse it gets, cause she wants to get that reaction that she’s hurt me. It kind of makes me wonder where the love she has for me is stored when she says those things. Trust me in the eyes of my mother i’m a great children but that’s because I evolved to the best liar and pretender I’ve ever seen. I can’t wait to move out so I can breathe and live.

    • Mr. Man

      August 6, 2015 at 10:43 pm

      Hmm, I am a guy and I’m not sure why I read this post or even the comments, but I agree with a couple of the comments. I’m married and My Wife went through some of these things. Her family has little or no regard for her, and I remember her telling me when we were still dating, that her Mother told her she was nothing during an argument. That sums up the way her family treats her. I have sisters, My Mother never said such to my sisters, myself, and my brothers. Till today, I don’t understand how a Parent can look their child in the eye and say they’re nothing, they’re useless, they’re foolish, etc. Parents that say this, what will you do when outsiders say these things to your kids, when you say these horrible things yourself? The way My Wife’s family treated her affected our relationship when we were dating, the insults, the emotional abuse, trauma and stress, the discouragement, the disregard, everything they had and put on her, stressed her and she transferred the aggression and stress on me; which made our relationship toxic initially. The mistake she made was telling her Mother about our relationship, her interference almost ruined it. Even My own Mother never made comments or judged our relationship, her Mother on the other hand, had her opinion about everything and anything; even things she knew next to nothing about. My Wife is a sweet girl, but they made her aggressive. I read a comment here where someone mentioned that her Mum insulted her boyfriend’s Mum, and her Parents said nasty things to her when her male friend came to her house, it’s funny as that’s almost the same that happened to my wife. I remember My Wife, my girlfriend then, her Mother insulted My Mother in the presence of her daughter, and wasn’t remorseful. She was actually justifying herself for the nasty and unnecessary comment she made. The 1st time I visited my wife, she wasn’t even my girlfriend, the way I was received was terrible. From the way I was received you could tell they had no regard for the poor girl. I was literally humiliated by her Dad, he looked at me like I was poop, and said things I cannot mention, as if that wasn’t enough, she was also humiliated, and insulted when I left. Her Parents had no regard for her that even her siblings didn’t respect her, I mean, when the Parents treated her like garbage, what do you expect from the rest of the kids? I had to warn them when we got married, if you have no regard for this girl, I do. I don’t take any crap from her family, they’re a handful. My wife is amazing, she’s changed my life positively. I’m glad My family loves her and treats her well and respects her, as opposed to her family. I try to treat my wife well against all odds, cause her family were very horrible to her. I feel I have to make up for that. The things that she grew up hearing were brutal and unimaginable. Why am I saying this, many people have said that the way you treat your child spoils future relationships with them and may affect them negatively, I’m here to say it doesn’t end there. It also spoils future relationships with your in-laws.

    • confusedsinglemumtobe

      November 7, 2015 at 10:59 pm

      Thanks a zillion for loving your wife regardless of what happened with her family. Thanks for not using that against her. I don’t know you but I want to believe yyou don’t dig up that painful past and throw it in her face after every argument. You are the exact opposite of my Ex but believe me when I tell you he got served too. Men like you are rare and on behalf of your wife and myself I say God bless you for your unconditional Love and support. I am going through all that your wife went through and even worse. I thought I have found a confidant in my ex, a shoulder to cry on till he starts shoving my pains in my face. Even went as far as asking my friend if she could let her bro wife someone with issues like mine. Lol. I was getting all this patience and endurance sermon from my friends till I got pregnant and he got worse in between am not an Enabler I have a mind of my own to a reasonable extent. This is a guy I’m just managing to put up with cos of loneliness and all. Well am an only child and my mum is the WORST MUM creation has to offer. Hers is a story for another day. Ok he started acting crazy when I got pregnant and to a point his mum interfered in and started taking his sides trust some of this idiotic MIL. My monster mum couldn’t even come up with any reasonable action. Did I forget to say that he physically, verbally abuses me and since his mum keeps saying I have to endure cause he is the man. Smh so I looked back att my journey and realised that if my mum had the voice to speak against molestaations both physical and verbals from my dad we wouldn’t be where we are today and I decided I would take a walk, have my baby and face it alone. I spelt it out to his mum that if I go through this pregnancy alone he shouldn’t even dream that he has a kid with me. I know they have the money to go to court and all but the koko of my epistle now is my dear BN family Wht are my Chances? I don’t want to go through all of this sufferings and still have that dumbass take my child from me. Apart from mooney he has no brains in his skull and he doesn’t even know the basics of life so he can’t teach the child the morals he doesn’t have himself. He was born into a very wealthy home yet you need to see him eat, talk, he argues like he has a phd in it and his stupid points will even send you wondering if he has ever seen d four walls of a school. He is a full grown man a full grown disappointment. I’m thinking he is a semi retard or so. I know you wouldd ask why I stayed with such till I even got pregnant it’s cos I was desperate to have my own family. I wanted to show my parents what family truly means when I have my own kids especially my mum. I wanted to let her see how to genuinely love a child and not affect him or her with your own irrationality and selfishness well my genotype is AS so most of my perfect matches that I have met didn’t work bcos of this so I stupidly threw all rationality into the bin when I met this Mister Unromantic Retard at 30 who then claimed he was looking for a wife. His attitude is the same at home yet his mum keeps supporting him. I served her too bcos I don’t take shit and whoever tries to serve me with it gets shoved off my way #lifeisShort #sorryforthelongtale #pleaseadviceasister I intend keeping the pregnancy but if It is compulsory he claims paternity then I would rather bort it but that’s d last thing n myy mind. I’m ready to give my baby my surname and work my butt’s off to give my baby the very best. I’m just 22 a year more to go in school. I run a fabrics business in school so I’m a bit fine by myself

  3. ane

    August 5, 2015 at 2:53 pm

    my mum had me when she was a teenager so basically I grew up with my grandma. My grandma did all the insults but still treat me better because my mother send a lot of my money to her for my upkeep which is her own way of raising me. Even though she provided my needs like sending me to private schools, summer holiday abroad with my siblings and even a masters degree abroad. I am still not emotionally attached to her. She can’t say this is the kind of person I am, I never experience fatherly and motherly love. Have always being dealing with things myself which is really hard on me. I will be 26years this month now I receives phone calls and whatsapp messages from her wanting to know what am up too and gisting me. I don’t enjoy the whole conversations because the foundation is not there and reason why I had to relocate because I couldn’t stand living with her and her husband. This is really affecting me because whenever am in a relationship I get so scared not to end up like her.

  4. Lsdy

    August 5, 2015 at 2:55 pm

    To accept you being a sexual being huh?! Whilst unmarried?!

    If she didn’t care about that – I’d say she was a bad mama pretty much. No true mother will feel comfortable with her daughter like that.

    I understand about the hurtful words and parents in general truly need to watch what they speak over their kids.

    The chick speaking in this video is probably a teen or in her early twenties. I’d like for her to revisit this when she’s in her thirties and see if she has the same exact sentiments. Better still when she has teenage daughters of her own……

    • nnenne

      August 6, 2015 at 2:16 am

      @Lsdy… You nailed it.
      I came from a very strict home. I used to think my folks hated me but looking back now, I couldn’t be more grateful.
      Real mothers cannot be friends with their children.
      Boundaries have to be set.

      The best thing parents can teach their children though, is self love. If you love yourself much, there won’t be any need to seek approval from anyone.

    • Mrs. T

      August 6, 2015 at 2:40 pm

      I’m a Mother, you can be strict with your kids, and still be their friends. What you said is ridiculous. Be careful of what you say to people, not only your kids, even your spouse, as well as outsiders. You can train a child, and be strict and still be loving, without saying nasty things that’ll destroy them spiritually, or things that’ll ruin the relationship you have with them. I hope Mothers and Mothers to be can learn a thing or two from these comments.

  5. Man in the Mirror

    August 5, 2015 at 3:11 pm

    Very thought provoking article. I think most mothers do these things unconsciously. I’m 34 yrs old now and i can still remember my mom yelling at me when i was like 7yrs. “Get out how many children do you see with……….. i can’t complete it for confidentiality sake. The point is that i have never really gotten over it all these years…Every now and then i hear it in my subconscious.. I have come to understand that mothers behave that way to process their own frustrations.

    • Ola

      August 6, 2015 at 11:57 am

      Wow,
      These brings back sad memories.
      My Mother also gave me a horrific time, My Parents treated me like garbage. So much that, before I got married, a friend of mine went and told My Husband that the person he’s about to get married to, comes from a family where she’s treated like nothing, so he should be alert. He told me a couple of months after we got married. I remember lots of people, domestic staffs, friends, family friends, used to always say I wasn’t treated like a member of the family, let alone; a 1st child. I’m the 1st of 5 kids. My siblings were oh so disrespectful. My friends never liked being around them. And My Parents never cautioned them. When I got married, My Husband couldn’t take it, he had to warn all of them. He said he comes from a home where he’s made to respect his older siblings, against all odds, and as such, he won’t take any crap from my family. To the extent he said to them, that if this was how they were rude to me when I was a spinster, and My Parents didn’t feel the need to correct them, that he won’t tolerate it. My Parents could compare you to the universe, never encouraging. My Mom was never appreciative. I remember a time we had a financial crisis in my family, I was the one doing everything, and I wasn’t working, I was in America then, an undergraduate student, I was literally giving My Mother money from my little allowance. It was so bad that whenever My Mother came to visit my siblings and I, I’ll be happy and sad at the same time. Happy to see her, but sad that I’ll spend money I didn’t have on her whole trip; including my siblings. She was never thankful. Upon all, when I was going through a phase in my life, the same Mother was comparing me to my sisters and brothers who never helped her when she needed help. It taught me to do what I can for people, and not inconvenience myself to please anyone, no matter who they are. She even once compared my achievements with that of my siblings, during my lowest moments. My Parents will insult me in front of my siblings, or anyone at all, and say nasty degrading things about me, they didn’t believe in me or think I’ll amount to anything, but I thank God for my life. The joke is on them now. My Mother that can say nasty, private and terrible things about me to anyone and everyone. Majority of people I know couldn’t stand her. But please, forgive them and let them bear the shame and guilt. Don’t let it cause you bitterness. Let go, leave everything to God. The horrible things they did to me, made me the strong woman I am today. I’m thankful to be married to a Man, who treats me better than anyone has ever treated me. Because of that, I don’t think of the bitterness they caused me.

    • Abk

      August 6, 2015 at 12:26 pm

      In some families, it is almost a curse to be a first child. They expect you to do everything, blame you for everything. Fail to train the rest of their kids; which results to them being lazy, irresponsible and wayward. Some Parents would still cover up for them. I feel absolutely sorry for some Parents. Some of them are the cause of broken relationships.

  6. Moi

    August 5, 2015 at 3:16 pm

    This topic is real…some mothers are not aware that they have the power in their tongues to make or break their children. Growing up my mum never thought I’d make it this far and make it good in my life (I don’t know why). She called me lazy….gosh I hated it so much. Mother favored very clearly my older sister , her boys and the last born girl . Today I don’t have a relationship with her and it hurts, I have made up my mind to never ever use bad words with my own kids and please two kids are enough for me. If you cant show equal love to 7 kids, please don’t bother to bring them to this earth. I thank God for my siblings, my mother could have caused so much animosity between us because she clearly had her favorites and will compare us often. But we are all grown today and love each other dearly. Thank God.

  7. Gia

    August 5, 2015 at 3:28 pm

    I swear i love my mom and i know she loves me but sometimes i wish i could “switch her off” like you do with a tv…-_-

  8. Adanne

    August 5, 2015 at 3:42 pm

    My Mum was an angel and I’ll miss her for the rest of my life. .

  9. Ross

    August 5, 2015 at 3:49 pm

    Spot-on as always Jennifer. Love your posts.
    I’m grateful to say my Mum is a queen. She has been an example to my sisters, my brother and I and she has been amazing strength to my dad, who could easily have become a tyrant because he’s such a strong character, but for my Mum. She stood by his side and talked back at him, shouted at him, fought with him, laughed with him and has refined him due to her quiet strength and no nonsense take on everything.
    She was strict with us, but always asked us if we understood why. She discussed every decision she made in our lives with us so that we were a part of everything she and my Dad did with and for us and I love her.
    When I was going away to boarding school at 11, scared and sure the horrible people there would kill me, she simply explained repeatedly that she wanted me to learn to cope on my own early on and to discover my strengths and weaknesses so that I can learn to challenge and refine myself and not always lean on her or my Dad. I could go on and on about how great this woman is, even as imperfect as she also is.
    I understand this isn’t the typical Nigerians story, but the only way to break this cycle of abusive patterns in Nigerian homes is for people to share their good and bad stories and for eachone to promise themselves they’d do better in their childs lives and not carry on the cycle.

  10. Dr. N

    August 5, 2015 at 3:57 pm

    Words do hurt. I think it’s better to spank a child than to call him names. Growing up, I passed through it all so I vowed not to call my kids names. If I do so in anger, I immediately take it back and apologize.
    It’s funny to see my shouting at my child “You are a good boy by force if you like scatter the whole house, I will not lose my mind!”
    Lol
    I don’t even let my nannies sing “cry cry baby….shame!” Abeg O. How can u come and shout ‘shame’ on my child? Address d behaviour not the person.

    • Tosin

      August 5, 2015 at 10:13 pm

      wonderful.

  11. sass

    August 5, 2015 at 3:58 pm

    Although a lot of people around me don’t know I am extremely sensitive to insults.
    My mum would use words like you are stupid or foolish and it would hurt like hell. I started keeping a diary of everytime she insulted me and the words she used.
    When I left the country to study at 17 she was clearing out my closet and found that book, I guess she realised the error of her ways as she is better with my siblings
    Problem is I have become insultive, I guess the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. But I have realised this and i am taking active steps not to insult my own Kids, I must be an awesome mum. I won’t spare the rod but insults eats at ones soul and self confidence.

  12. Mama Saffron

    August 5, 2015 at 4:03 pm

    As someone who has recently become a Mum i started worrying about the kind of Mum i would be even before this child was born. My mother is a fantastic mother, but Lord knows there are some things about her mothering skills I would not pass on as a mother. Whilst she was never abusive or said negative words, well except from the regular, you are too stubborn etc, she made you fear her more than you respected her and as soon as i was out of her clutches i.e. boarding school abroad, I started to rebel. Many a time I deliberately did things that I knew were wrong, but I did them anyway, because I wanted to annoy her, and as she couldn’t “control” me anymore, I took delight in that. It wasn’t until I met a friend who also had the same kind of Mum who told me, Janey, I’ve been there done that, I have a wardrobe full of t shirts. You can’t continue hurting yourself to hurt your Mum, that’s just daft. I mean, our relationship was so screwed that because my sister married a man she approved of (even though it was a love match and thankfully still is), I wanted to rebel by marrying someone she would downright hate. Thank goodness I didn’t end up with my ex, because we would be divorced by now, and what would I have done to myself in trying to get back at her. Daddy is the softie so i guess she had to discipline for both of them and she took it too far sometimes. My mother can scare an entire army just by looking at you and her voice had this power in it, even without shouting, she can make you tremble. Many of us say we will never parent our children the way we were parented, but I am sure that there are stats that will support the fact that we do exactly just that, because it is the only way we know, and that, as I begin my journey in motherhood, scares me shitless. She has apologised to all of us in her own way, but she still maintains the fact that, her parenting style is what made all of us turn out well, despite many arguments with her that Le Boo for example turned out well and his mother wasn’t a Draconian. Her excuse, I can’t compare, he was raised in a different culture and race. I give up, there’s no arguing with her. No matter how old you get, the influence of the kind of mothering you received, follows you everywhere and even impacts the decisions you make.

    • Abena

      August 5, 2015 at 4:44 pm

      Hi Mama Saffron a.k.a Jane Public. Congrats on your new bundle of joy! Should we get used to your new name or you would be doing Dr.Jykll and Ms.Hyde? *wink*
      Just in case case you wondering how i know its you… I remember you saying you would name your daughter Saffron… The internet never forgets they say

    • Mama Saffron

      August 5, 2015 at 7:08 pm

      Your FBI skills ehn. I couldn’t silently sneak in after my hiatus. Hahahahaha. Jane Public has transformed into Mama Saffron. After the hellish labour I went through, I tell anyone who cares to listen that i have earned the right to be called Mama Saffron, and no spice jokes allowed. lol

    • MC

      August 5, 2015 at 11:33 pm

      LOL FBI skills! You made it no secret that you were pushing for that name.
      Congratulations!!! Have Fun!!!

    • Oj

      August 6, 2015 at 1:19 am

      Abena, you sharp o. Mama saffron, congrats o. U have earned that name. Ko easy.

    • whocares

      August 5, 2015 at 5:41 pm

      @Abena.. #DoubleTuale for your detective skills. Congratulations Jane!!!!
      Anyone remember that Indie Arie song – Get it together? “One shot to your heart without breaking your skin, no one has the power to hurt you like your kin” and that is the truth. I have realised that parents are human. That realisation requires a certain level of maturity as you wont think this when you are 18 or even 20. But eventually a person will learn to start living for themselves and not their family. Life is too short. Too short to let negative things in.
      Now as for when I become a parent? I am worried. With my brothers I am slightly militant. They actually fear me more than they fear my mom, but I always leave room for conversation. My brothers can gossip and that is how we bond (gossip and food). lol. I am watching the things I do with them and hopefully I do not repeat the same mistakes with my own kids (the poor guinea pigs)

    • Mama Saffron

      August 5, 2015 at 7:20 pm

      Thank you @whocares. You know reading other people’s stories made me cry. Blame it on the hormones. I sent the link to my sister and she came back saying, we should be grateful, at least Mummy wasn’t this bad. She is a great Mum, although I can see a little traits of our mother in her, the culture she is raising her family, like I am too, would probably curb whatever habits from mother dearest that we have internalised. I find myself comparing Mummy to the mothers of my friends and i am a tad envious that we don’t have that kind of fun, carefree relationship. By making us fear her, because she had a mother who also did that to her, she created a wedge between us and she is more like an authority figure than mom, even till now where she should be more like our friend than Mum. Always has to have an opinion about everything. Lol. She still calls my daughter by her Nigerian name by the way, My in-laws on the other hand that weren’t championing the cause while i was pregnant were on board by the second day, My mother in law calls her Saffy. My own mother no gree. My sister and I have promised each other not to repeat what we call “the generational motherhood curse”.

    • Agro

      August 5, 2015 at 8:02 pm

      Congratulationsssssssssss!!!!! I have been watching out for you online for weeks. I’m so happy for you dear. I knew you were the one immediately i saw your name. Feels like my sister just had a baby……grinning

  13. Zeeebby

    August 5, 2015 at 4:06 pm

    hmmmm….. where do we star from? I am glad ha our generation was blessed with social media because of issues like this…. we are able to learn and observe other people’s experiences.
    I heard the word “Stupid” at least 20 times a day….from morning till night…. other times it was Okponu (Idiot), Ode….. infact ehn if I woke up nd my mum didnt say any of those things, something must be wrong!
    And hen there was d constant slaps and abara that accompanied 70% of the insult during the day….it got to a point where I would flinch if she just moved her spoon…it was physically nd mentally exhausting….it went on for over a decade…..then followed 2 suicide attempts….. Then I moved out for uni and God helped me heal…..

  14. kcz

    August 5, 2015 at 4:18 pm

    i love my mum but she always compared me to my elder sis, that am lazy and doz stuffs, now the new one is when am i getting married? forgetting that she was d reason am not married today cos she said ha prayer partner said dt is not my hubby and the one the prayer partner saw as my hubby aint in the picture anymore. am so pissed and angry cos at 29, i dont even have a bf. sometimes i wish for the time to wind back. our last conversation was hurtful over the fone and i made up my mind not to call for the time being though wish her good cos i want her to be alive to carry her grandkids but i will never ever compare my kids cos i believe each has its own strength and weakness

  15. Abena

    August 5, 2015 at 4:30 pm

    http://www.bellanaija.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/dreamstime_xl_34700550.jpg

    wOW A lot of emotionally scarred people here…. Where are the shrinks?this is hot spot for you!

    Very sorry for all those who got emotionally scarred with the words.
    My mom must have said one or two to me but i believe it didnt make belittle me,as a matter of fact,it spurned me on to be a better person than those descriptive words she was using.

    Very sorry to you all.

    PS: I LOVE MY MOM AND SHE LOVES ME RIGHT BACK,I KNOW THAT FOR SURE

  16. anonymous

    August 5, 2015 at 4:47 pm

    k

  17. Eaglebabe

    August 5, 2015 at 5:01 pm

    I bless my mom every minute because she raised us (my siblings and I) the best way a mother could. I see my mom as a great friend that a mother. She is the first person i will call if anything happens, We were able to discuss everything including “”s e x”. She is my best adviser and i couldn’t ask God for a better mom than her. what we were scared of was my mom’s “”deadly gaze”. Her way of disapproving our actions was by looking at you with a serious face until you get uncomfortable and apologize, if you are unlucky she will whip you with her tape measure…lol. All my dad cared about was our education and left the training part to my mom….Abusive words were not tolerated in my house, not even among my siblings….

  18. Chioma

    August 5, 2015 at 5:10 pm

    Hmm, this article really hit me deeply because growing up I had a very emotionally abusive mother. Any insult in the book, you just name it I was called it! Daft, dumb blonde, useless, idiot, fool, bastard stupid. I remember the day she told me that my friends only pretend to like me and can’t I see that nobody likes me and people stare at me in disgust??? She would wake me up in the morning to ask me why I ate too much bread. Please how much is bread that I cannot eat???!! Very petty. I will never forget the day she spat on me and she hurled so many insults at me and said nobody will marry me. It left my self esteem in shatters, I cut off all my friends and dated guys that were bad news because I believed that I did not deserve better. I can go on! Do I mention the countless times she has asked me to leave her house or the text messages she sent riddled with insults. Any little mistake, was an opportunity to remind me that I was nothing. Or the time I was so sick she started screaming at me that I want to prove she is a bad mother. May God forgive her. I had to take care of myself and teach myself a lot of things.
    Mind you, I was not a problem child. I got good grades, never got into trouble, never lied or stole but she always made my life HELL. Now that I am older and independent I STRUGGLE to even be civil with her it is such a task for me because I feel so angry. She now depends on me for everything and tries to be my friend but I put up a wall. I can’t forget just like that.

    • Gia

      August 5, 2015 at 6:27 pm

      Oh my god…

    • Mary

      August 5, 2015 at 8:13 pm

      Are you sure we don’t have the same mother? Mine even told me her prayer for me is to get cancer…. I’m only 23 but the kind of insults I’ve gotten from my own blood mother is so ridiculous. I can’t even begin to talk about my past relationships with men. May God help us.

  19. aunty shayshay

    August 5, 2015 at 5:30 pm

    Recently,i was with my cousin and her two year old daughter in the car.the little girl was singing,she loves singing.her mum then told her ‘shut up! I will slap you oo’ I was shocked and told her not to say negative words to her daughter and that words have creative power.for Christ sake,she was just singing.the little girl looked at me and said “Aunty shayshay,thank you”.she calls me Aunty shayshay.her mum was embarassed.lol

  20. aduke

    August 5, 2015 at 6:44 pm

    Wow!I have been waiting for an article like this a long time ago. I think mine is just as terrible. My mom is my hero and I never waste time telling pple just how much good she has been a mother and a father to my siblings and I. I finished university with a top grade and never gave her issues. I never brought a guy home nor introduced her to any man. The thing is I have a huge problem telling her anything personal about me and I can say she is the cause of that. My mom has formed a habit of keeping malice with her kids over very trival issues. Issues that oda parents would probably just shout and forget or have a decent coversation with their kids on. She openly talks abt everything u think u spoke to her in private with just to mock u.The malice extends to weeks and months at times while still under the same roof. She loves it wen we go down on our knees crying,begging and telling her how much we owe her for what she has ddone in our lives due to the irresponsibility of our father. I never want to be rude to my mom cos its against all religious annd moral beliefs, buh all I can think of is a way to leave this house and finally be on my own cos of the emotional and psycological torture I suffer

  21. olori asake

    August 5, 2015 at 6:44 pm

    Tchew…..am tired.am jst waiting fr 2017 wwn I graduate frm uni..my comfort naw z 2017!!!…I jst want to leave…she calls me lazy….she sys apa dt z wasteful child…….dr was a tym my dad bot eatables nd we dint knw cuz dy were pad wit uneatables.she found out it gt spolt…d nxt tin u cnt be useful to urslf blah ….percn wey buy eatables no even knw abt weda it got spoilt…she strrd telling ma sis…..am nt ur motherr…blah blah…tchew….nd I wonder u r a pastor”s wife shuuuu….I told my frend shz like mothers r like dt blah….I try to shake off d thought dt she shud jst die…d way I want to punish her z to jt resume skul md plait d kinda of hair she hates….xpects me tp be responsible fr all kitchen stuffs…shouts at d maid fr nt working nd ends up saying”aw shall I blame d maid wen ma dota has no bizness here….she prefers ma sbr broda maybe cuz he skuls abroad…always calling me to coik fr him even wen am busy…tels pple I kanra nlike am nt nice wen she streses ma life… ..my younger sis mst nt cook…jst me na me get hand…she says we use hynger to wire her wen she leaves fr work bt d day we cook….sumrin z rong wit d stew or we dnt knw aw to cook rice…I tell my broda nd he says I complain too much……arrrrrghhhh….my dears…am in fr ds ine oo…I dnt knw aw am gonna survive my nxt 4 mnths holiday..babcock reduce it to 1 biko…am so tired nd tired nd d tin z na me cary her face!!!!…….she can be nice sumtym bt am nt reay to bond wit her in d nearest future…..I hate it wen she enters d bathroom wen am dere…dr wa a tym ma sis was sick…she wa jst blaming d. Grl saying u r nt helpful blah blah nd complaining….o he wantd to retaliate abi cuz ma sis no help fr hous mean say make malaria kill her…smh…I choose sumtim to buy at d mkt he find a fault aying d material z too flowery …o sun mi 2017 oooo!!!!!!!hmmm..I don talk 3 much e ma ma binu…….iya saffron…congratulations jare jare…e ku owo lomi….dnt wory..u “d be darling at motherhood….keep praying too .n aw wz d labo room xperience *winks considering ur reaction towards isio ” pregnancy article….u mst tel me ooiio….oya bellanaija..bikonu post ds comment…na fr road I type ooo

    • chiclero

      August 5, 2015 at 9:37 pm

      Pls, could just translate all what you wrote. It’s not just your school mates you’re gisting with here abeg. Your comment had a lot to say but it hurts to read.

    • brown-ice

      August 5, 2015 at 10:31 pm

      My eyes hurt so bad, I couldn’t even finish reading your comment. Next time please try typing in ENGLISH.

    • olori asake

      August 6, 2015 at 3:49 am

      Sory abt all ma “englishes”…..unfortunately,i was using a touch screen to type…..

    • N

      August 9, 2015 at 12:58 am

      For some reason, you actually think this is a good excuse for the disgusting way you type? Nah girl, fix up.

    • Glory

      August 6, 2015 at 4:00 am

      You are an undergraduate and you type like this?

    • babycakes

      August 6, 2015 at 9:34 am

      Be calm jor….u must be too sensitive…they dnt love u bt they spend so much to send u to a private uni…na so.

    • J

      August 6, 2015 at 11:26 am

      Please!!! You could have written it out in full English and spared us the double trauma of not understanding you and not being sympathetic to your story!!!

    • gurl_wendy

      August 7, 2015 at 12:35 am

      This must be what hieroglyphics feels like, I really tried to read but started feeling dizzy.

  22. Timisola

    August 5, 2015 at 6:45 pm

    My dad is d problem,insult today,insult tomorrow,smtimes i Wish he will die,like….jush….stupid..useless..does words pains to d bne marrow…ma mum..i love her die.

    • Shandi

      August 5, 2015 at 8:55 pm

      Please don’t wish your Dad death, no matter how bad. Please reject it immediately. They’re people who’ll want to have their Dad’s with them. Don’t let the devil use you.

  23. bibi

    August 5, 2015 at 6:56 pm

    Hmmmmmmmm. Block mechanism

  24. Tolu

    August 5, 2015 at 7:00 pm

    I was 8 when she made a statement now I’m over 30 but I’ve never forgotten…..I hope I’ll forget

  25. aduke

    August 5, 2015 at 7:03 pm

    I have refrained from running away or leaving the house cos I don’t want to seem ungrateful for all she has done. She also forms a habit of reporting us to pple we know and don’t even know, making us look ungrateful and wicked. I still don’t get how a mother who claims to lover her kids keep malice with them at the same time not involving herself with ANYTHING and EVERYTHING concerning them within that malice period.

  26. Cynical

    August 5, 2015 at 7:15 pm

    Thanks Jennifer for this article.
    Like some people above have already pointed out,we shouldn’t forget that our mothers are human beings and trying their best in the way they know how and many times they won’t get it right. We owe it to ourselves to pick ourselves up and forgive those of them who failed cos our life is ours not theirs.
    Fortunately,my mom was the best always making me feel good about myself. No name calling,she’ll just beat you and get it over with. She taught and still teaches me so much everyday. We occasionally clash on stuff,but I make my decisions especially now that I’m older knowing fully well that she’s giving her advice from her own perspective and it doesn’t mean it’s right.
    As a parent now,I know how easy it is to transfer our frustrations to our kids.like if you have a hard day at work or are angry with the hubby and Ur child chooses that moment to do something wrong,the floodgates will open. Also,that comparing kids can do a number on the one not doing so well and scar him/her forever. So as hard as it is,we have to try constantly to be even better parents,help our kids with their self esteem,instill in them good virtues etc.

  27. Agro

    August 5, 2015 at 8:27 pm

    This really hit home. I am of a melancholy Sanguine temperament and it soaked all of my mum’s emotional abuses. She abused me so much that i contemplated suicide on many occasions. I remember i packed some clothes in a polybag when i was 10years old and attempted to run from home with my 50naira savings.My sister saw me,ran after me and pleaded with me to return home.
    Ironically, she is a very caring mum but her words hurt so deep. I remember i used to have a journal while growing up where i documented my hurt. Is it the various times she said i would amount to nothing?while doing my masters in Nigeria,she said i was proud but i should know that that is the highest i would ever get in life because she herself has a masters(in guidance and counseling ironically). She would say i would be used and dumped, that i liked boys,blah blah. I would be 26 and i’m yet to have sex o.
    Melancholy being my dominant temperament, I would remember all the hurtful words and internalise them and weep. When i got to leave the house for my masters, my life became better. I became more cheerful, full of life and friendly. I try to limit my conversations with her as much as possible for my sanity sake.
    She woke me during the night two weekends ago to complain that I don’t tell her my plans and decisions that i would rather tell friends. She tries to form bestie with me but it feels strange. God knows I love her to bits but I’m sorry I just can’t.
    Sorry for my long epistle.

    • Shandi

      August 5, 2015 at 9:02 pm

      I read your epistle. You’ll be fine Hun, try and forgive her. I know the relationship might never be the same, but for your sanity, peace of mind, my of course to shame the devil. Just forgive her. I’m not saying forget, but forgive. I know it’s very hard. Pray about it. My Mom also gave me a tough time, maybe not intentional but I was very unhappy. When I was younger, I transferred my aggression and bitterness I got at home to people in school. I was picked on to a point that My Mother unconsciously gave her siblings the liberty to insult me and get involved with things about my family that had nothing to do with them. Do terrible things behind my back. Cause chaos as she’ll say terrible things about me to My Dad. At times, when people say, your Mom said this and that (bad stuff), in my mind I’ll be like; what’s her aim? Till today, I cannot trust her. But, I’ve forgiven her. For my one happiness. I went through a trial in life that My Mom was callous towards me, My Dad too, even my siblings. Today when they smile with me, it’s hard for me to reciprocate cause in my lowest moments, they were brutal, they betrayed me and they said the ansolute

    • Shandi

      August 5, 2015 at 9:05 pm

      I read your epistle. You’ll be fine Hun, try and forgive her. I know the relationship might never be the same, but for your sanity, peace of mind, and of course to shame the devil. Just forgive her. I’m not saying forget, but forgive. I know it’s very hard. Pray about it. My Mom also gave me a tough time, maybe not intentional but I was very unhappy. When I was younger, I transferred my aggression and bitterness I got at home to people in school. I was picked on to a point that My Mother unconsciously gave her siblings the liberty to insult me and get involved with things about my family that had nothing to do with them. She did terrible things behind my back. Cause chaos as she’ll say terrible things about me to My Dad. At times, when people say, your Mom said this and that (bad stuff), in my mind I’ll be like; what’s her aim? Your own child? Till today, I cannot trust her. But, I’ve forgiven her. For my own happiness. I went through a trial in my life that My Mom was callous towards me, My Dad too, even my siblings. Today when they smile with me, it’s hard for me to reciprocate cause in my lowest moments, they were brutal, they betrayed me and they said the absolute worst things to me. But, I thank God for my life. Everyone will betray you, only God will be with you. I learnt life through my own family.
      Forgive. Cyber hugs to you!

  28. Kay dollz

    August 5, 2015 at 8:31 pm

    My mom ehhhhh………I gave up long ago,I’m focusing all my energy on my son,I will be with him through all the ups and downs of life so help me God.

  29. Sheila

    August 5, 2015 at 9:36 pm

    Reading all your replies, makes me feel like you are all my sisters. Its such a blessing to here how you are all coping with it, just like me . You have not rejected them but have learnt to block your emotions. Its hard because you can’t really discuss how you feel with family or friends.Nigerians will say..but its your mother. You should be grateful. In our culture nothing the elders do, is ever wrong.
    Friends with great parents only reply with aww dont worry it will get better. 38yrs later ive only learnt to block it. I remember when I was in my 20’s my heart wasy dying to just have a motherly role in my life. One of my friends had an amazi g mum which all of her friends called the Queen. My heart really connected with her,i could call her everyday ask for advice and prayer. But my friend didnt like that, she felt i was too forward. Consequently our friendship also ended.

    Now as a mother with two handsome boys (so cute) I spend my days seeking the word of God to train them. Getting it wrong is not an option. That is the greatest legacy I can live for the future generations. A lineage of Love and Godly mothers. Money cant buy that. Instagram pics cant buy that.

    So ladies/gents this is a quiet wound that we all deal with.. it doesnt get easier. But we get wiser.
    Its lonely, we ‘play’ happy families out of respect. But God truly does comfort us till the end.

    Free her,expect nothing. Pray for her. For a woman to raise her child in that way, can only show how much pain and saddness this woman must have deep down..

    Rest well my sisters

    We are not forgortten

    Sheila

  30. damseldam1

    August 5, 2015 at 10:08 pm

    hmmmmm i dont even want to start thinking over again all i could say is that if she had behaved like a caring mother i wouldn’t have ran away from home, two kids later and a failed relationship/marriage funny enough she was also the caused of the failed marriage now shes like i should be praying for husband that will take my kids as their own.. imagine!!!!!!!!! God is watching sha…

  31. Tosin

    August 5, 2015 at 10:09 pm

    i’m sha an omo daddy!

  32. Just me

    August 5, 2015 at 10:12 pm

    I keep away from my mum. She has not seen her grand child nor the pictures and I have no plans to change it. Growing up,I heard : you are a prostitute, I wish I did not give birth to you, your head is heavy meaning that i am dull and because of that it is decaying and causing it to be heavy! I will not enjoy my marriage if I HAPPEN to get married, I will not survive child bearing, telling people who matter in my life evil things about me, making friends run away from me, orchestrating fights between all the siblings, some almost ending in death! So called “higher” Authoritities hinted her that I was pregnant and lo and behold, she began using floodlight to look for me! Hm! God forbid evil. It took GOd’s grace while I was growing up and I have turned out well, but there are days the past just hits me…

  33. chifire

    August 5, 2015 at 11:51 pm

    Ur mums are angels compared to mine. I jst pray for God to help me forgive. If your mother can lie against you, what else would she not do?
    I just thank God daily for my dad, he kept me sane, (he still does) believed in me & made me who I am 2day.
    I look @ my 4 kids & I’m constantly reminded not to 2 be like my mum.

  34. Sommy

    August 6, 2015 at 1:54 am

    So true!!!! My mom is the same. Sometimes worse. I’d rather be flogged than listen to her insults because they pierce your soul (if that’s possible). The only thing I have told myself and will tell others is that I will handle things way different from how my mother did. Never will I use those harsh words my mother used/uses on me. I will be more patient and understand that my children are humans and not perfect. I will also acknowledge the fact that I am not always right and apologize for my mistakes and make amends.

  35. zaraa

    August 6, 2015 at 4:38 am

    Reading all this …. I realized how blessed i am , with my parents, yeah there were some down times but it was all good…if i am to comeback to this life again ,i will like to have the same parents.

  36. Ochokwu

    August 6, 2015 at 6:56 am

    It’s like a pity party is starting in here and am not comfortable with it. Despite all we went through, now am 26, I realise Mama m did it all for a reason. Growing up, she handled we girls like a soldier because the society we lived in and still live in is unfair to women and for you to take your rightful place in the society, a mother has got to train you wella not by over pampering. Spat on the floor to make sure we got back from errands on time. Beat us very well when we misbehaved. Whenever there was a party in the street,most times except when necessary, she would cook rice and give us coke and Fanta and tell us to stay in the palor and do our own mini partyto help us in self control. One time she slapped me at a bus packfor walking too slow while the bus was about to leave(but what was I waiting for her to peck me for that?). So many instances but mama m never ceased to pray for us. After flogging you and you must have slept off, she carried us in her laps, fed us and tucked us in bed because she said a child should never go to bed hungry. . All she did was for love.

    Today, we are best of friends. We all turned out well by his grace despite all the nsogbus life threw at us. She got her priorities damn right. First, a mother, then a friend.

    Love you mama m!!!

    • Mrs. T

      August 6, 2015 at 2:54 pm

      Ochokwu,
      Your comment is very unreasonable and insensitive. “It’s like a pity party is starting here and I’m not comfortable with it”? Are you for real? What a cruel and mindless comment! Most of these people leaving comments just want other people going through the same to know that they’re not alone, and although it’s wrong for this to happen to children, it still does happen. You should be logical to know that just cause you don’t go through certain things, doesn’t mean others don’t. I’m a Mother, I don’t treat my kids the way these commenters have been treated, I also was never treated like that, I however know many people, family members, friends and acquaintances who were treated the same. That I wasn’t treated callously doesn’t mean others weren’t. Use your brain and try to be analytical and sensitive when making comments; especially on topics like this. They’re people who have attempted suicide and committed suicide because of this. If you’re not comfortable, get off Bella Naija. I cannot stand ignorant and insensitive people. That’s like saying cause certain women suffer from domestic abuse at home, and they’re expressive about it, and you’re lucky not to, it means they’re throwing a pity party by letting it out? They’re many reasons why you’re blessed with a brain; put it to effective use.

    • Opeyemi

      August 6, 2015 at 11:33 pm

      @mrst don’t bother dear. Its the culture, how dare a child even complain. People don’t understand their is a difference between daily verbal abuse and mumsy being strict.These kind of women never understand, ‘best friends with mama’. they don’t comprehend how others cant have those type of relationships with their mothe.

    • Mrs. T

      August 7, 2015 at 10:49 am

      Opeyemi, I know right. It’s unfortunate people reason like this. When they have no relationship with their kids, they’ll start blaming it on witches in the village. Forgetting they’re actually the cause behind it. May God helps us.

  37. nammy

    August 6, 2015 at 7:57 am

    There was lot of insults and beatings growing up and I questioned if she was really my mum ( if you see both of us, you would think she spat me out).
    As I grew older, I saw her love in display, in her working two jobs and giving of herself so we all can be comfortable. Only then did I start believing she was really my mum.
    I guess beating and Insulting is just our parents way of child raising,though am not saying it is right. If our parents tell us how their own parents raised them, it might be worse than how we were raised (maybe leaving them all night in the Bush when they misbehave- just kidding). Some parents do really dislike their kids but in general most parents employ this abusive way because that’s the only way they know how, they want them to turn out right.
    The onus lies on this generation parents to change that but its not really happening because parents nowadays tend to spoil their kids in a bid to protect them from what they went through as kids. Because your mum didn’t let you wear braids at 12 you make long adult braids for your three months old.
    Let us strike a balance please!

  38. nammy

    August 6, 2015 at 8:35 am

    Who has seen Glimore girls? The mother-daughter relationship is priceless. Meanwhile the mum had a crappy relationship with her own mum.

  39. babycakes

    August 6, 2015 at 9:46 am

    Loool…i hv actually learnt to deal wt my mother..fr real…i am so glad..i laugh loudd at the the things she says and expect me to b hurt or piss me off..till she looks at me in amazement and laugh or hiss. When she starts d comparison thing whc i hv warned her severally of the consequences (told her she will cause so much hatred among her kids so much that when she’s old and dies..she’ll have a scattered burial and there wnt be a family unit again)..i jst return it calmly and firmly that she shd stop it. She keeps malice too bt i hv really learnt nt to care…whn she tire, she go talk. I swear my mum jst teaches me how to live wt the average naija man…lmfao

  40. Personal Signature

    August 6, 2015 at 9:55 am

    Touching stories!

    We all have passed through it, especially those who are 20-25years and above, as the new age mothers have learnt and are better mothers

    Our mothers thought they were doing us a favor and that is the best way of bringing up a child (at least that they know). Don’t forget that that is the way they were brought up and that is the only way they know to raise a child.

    Many of them never had parental love. Many of them had marital problems and their husbands giving them serious headache-and they end up transferring to the kids. Don’t forget that many of them were financially challenged as well as they depended on our fathers (not like this age) which also resulted into transfer of aggression.

    My heart goes to those who still stay with their parents, but as soon as you leave the house, the equation will definitely change. Many mothers still verbally insult their married wards, but it is up to you to give her some space. The more space you give them, the more they value you and want to be a friend.

    Words are definitely powerful. They carry life and to be candid, many of us have been plagued by their words. In as much as we are enlightened in God, all we have to do is to renounce these words, cancel, nullify and redeem ourselves. If you feel yours is so strong, you can go for deliverance. Any evil/negative word spoken against my life, that is plaguing me till date, i nullify them with the blood of Jesus. Every negative utterance is turned positive in my life.

    Listen my fellow BN friends, 2COR 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. HALLELUJAH!

    That settles it. God’s word supersedes any man’s word, be it my mother, a witch, a wicked family member, an enemy, an evil wisher…) I am a new creature and no curse, negative word can work against me.

    Numbers 23:23 Surely there is no enchantment against Jacob , neither is there any divination against Israel (insert your name)

    Free your mind, renew your mind and have faith all is nullified (because in reality, it has been nullified). Wow, I am blessed!

  41. Abena

    August 6, 2015 at 10:07 am

    I didnt bother finishing your rant!Maybe you are really the problem not your mother!You are as lazy as they come.How does typing on touch screen become an excuse for this punishment?
    Please you are an undergard,exert yourself to write PROPERLY! You wont die from it.HIAN

    • missmaame

      August 6, 2015 at 11:56 am

      abena youve understood the nigerian language paa oh. i find myself doing same.

  42. Suz

    August 6, 2015 at 11:34 am

    BN,
    I really don’t understand you guys and how you reason. If you don’t like people posting comments then remove the comment section. If you guys can’t post comments, for example, for someone like Bruno, who makes inappropriate and disrespectful comments; then I don’t understand. This is a very sensitive issue, and even so, if people can take time and send lengthy emotional comments, and you remove to post it, then I don’t understand.

    • Suz

      August 6, 2015 at 11:35 am

      If you guys can post comments, for example*

  43. Gnelly

    August 6, 2015 at 2:12 pm

    I read all the comments and I am amazed at what a lot of people had to bear growing up. One thing I have to say is that our mothers were human, having issues, frustrations, fears and other matters to deal with. A lot of them could not cope well with channeling their angers hence they misdirected it to any erring child.
    I was a head strong child growing up. My mum of course refused to spare the rod. She didn’t use vile words but she beat the living daylight out of me, consequently I became angry and lashed out at my mates..I always thought she hated me..One day I had knocked out the two growing teeth of a younger boy and the parents brought him to my house. My mum was frustrated, she rushed for her cane again and started flogging me, after the flog she ordered me to my room and warned me never to come out. I felt betrayed, angry and I thought of running away. The boy was at fault my mum didn’t even wait to hear what the quarrel was about, she already concluded that I was at fault. I stayed in my room, but anger got better of me and I decided to tell her what transpired so that she will know, just for her to know. I quietly opened the door to her room, only to see her kneeling down, crying with my pix in hands, her words were thus – God you gave me a beautiful child, a very beautiful intelligent girl, and the enemy wants to snatch her away from me by making her a ruffian and a fighter, I (insert her name) will fight the devil, I will fight till I recover my child, till the spirit of my child returns to me. I was weak, i never knew how much my attitude and general troublesome nature affected my dear mother. I left as quietly as I came, she was still crying holding her stomach.I saw my mum’s raw pain. Something in me knew I had to change.I still slipped, I still failed her sometimes, but I made conscious effort to change. I remember how close we later became before her demise. There was a time my younger bro aggravated me, I wanted to react, we were all in the parlor, my mum was looking at me, i later sighed and sat down, later in the night she called me and hugged me, she said I was a better person, she told me to wait it out that my bro will apologize, that I had shamed the devil, truly my bro later apologized. I remember her entrusting her monthly salary to me, her life insurance willed to me..The way she beat me then eeeh, you will think she wanted me dead. I contemplated running, I prayed for my real mum to appear then. I am a better person now much better and I am forever grateful to my mum for not giving up or allowing me to rot and become a street fighter.
    One thing we should cut our parents some slacks, some had no real parental care, some learn as they go, some are fighting the weakness they failed in, that they see in you hoping you do not repeat it. Its just that some of them have no idea of how to fight it. They use force ( flogging), bad words, many trials till in their mind they succeed. That is why you see a lot of them trying to be friends later, cos they believe their crude method yielded results. they believe they have won what was trying to steal you from them.

    • Blessedheart

      August 6, 2015 at 4:56 pm

      Your story brought tears to my eyes. God help us to be great parents.

  44. ayo

    August 6, 2015 at 2:23 pm

    it isnt only about mothers fathers could be worse, my mother died when i was 10 years old after she died my father cut of every family members, we dint have any relationship with anybody my granny made efforts but noting really worked out till after8 years, right now visiting my extended family just feels wrong , everyone be acting weird around us. after my mother died my dad spoilt us like he use to, but when he remarried everything changed his wife said we were spoilt children even tho er kids er extremely spoilt. we stop having the luxury we use to have, he started acting all funny yo us his kids, calling us liars, he just acts like i nd my sisters were the extended family in our nuclear family. i remember when my step mums kid was born i wasn’t allowed to carry the child because they said i was evil and i was a witch that my hear wast pure , if i carried the child i would hurt him. when i heard it i cried seriously that day i wast surprised my step mum said that but from my dad no. it hurt me so bad, my older sister dislikes my dad a lot he acts very funny to us his kids, we cant ask him for something he raises his voice at us, that we ask too much but when it comes to my step mum and her kids its totally different, he always tell us we should be grateful for the kind of stepmum we have,that some step mum would not be doing what shes doing for us. i and my siblings are always surprised because she does nothing , absolutely nothing for us, no motherly care, nothing she acts like she is competing with us, i barely ever call them when i am away, because i have nothing to say to them, i get very jealous when i see the relationship my friends have with their parents. my dad was suppose to be my best friend but its like he turned his back against us, the only part is that i am grateful to God he still pays our school fees and gives us pocket money after ranting so much. i know by the time i get married i would stop relating with him, it hurts me so much i never had a proper relationship with him he is suppose to be my mother aswell, i dint even have any adult i talk to when i have personal issues i just keep everything to myself. he use to be my hero like i wanted the man i would get married to be exactly like him, but now i cant wish for that. every day i pray to God to give me long life to take care of my kids and no other woman should. i don’t want what happened to i and my siblings repeat itself.

    • Exq

      August 6, 2015 at 3:59 pm

      Sorry love! ❤️ God doesn’t sleep, just know that. God will SURELY perfect all that concerns you in Jesus’ Mighty Name, Amen.

  45. Biola

    August 6, 2015 at 3:08 pm

    You all need to realize that there’s a difference between being a strict Mum, and being an abusive one. Words are very powerful! I was flogged, cautioned, well trained. But My Mom was never abusive, she was very careful with her words. Some Mothers are too abusive, some even place curses on their kids in the name of training them. My Mum flogged me and my siblings almost everyday but we’re thankful today. Mind you, she wasn’t abusive. Some Mothers call their kids oloriburuku (an unfortunate fellow), “God punish you”, etc, and you call that home training? They’re some things that some Mothers have said to their kids in the name of training them that has affected their kids in different aspects of their lives today. You couldn’t even say “stupid” in my house, but we were beaten. My Mother was not and is not a partial Mother, she was honest, not abusive. Some Mothers tell lies, cause wahala in the family because of lies, some pick sides among their kids. Some sibling rilvary today are caused by some Mothers partiality among kids and dishonesty. Some did things knowingly, some unknowingly. There’s a difference between being a strict Mother and being an emotionally abusive and cursing Mother.

    • Blessedheart

      August 6, 2015 at 4:59 pm

      Yeah. I’m grateful my mum wasn’t abusive though she was really strict. I wish she was a little warmer though but thankfully, our relationship is better now.

  46. Ibimena

    August 6, 2015 at 7:29 pm

    First off ita saffron congrats on your new bundle of joy. I’m only just as an adult coming to terms with the concept of emotional abuse from your parents,which many of us in nigeria grew up with in one form or the other and all I can say is we need a lot of counseling and help to get over it and not go from victims to abusers. May God comfort you and heal your wounds.

  47. gurl_wendy

    August 7, 2015 at 12:13 am

    You’re a good man, Mr Man just keep on loving your wife and helping her heal, I know what it’s like to be angry and aggressive because of family issues and let it spill into my relationship, I hope she’s able to heal and reconcile with her sweet nature.

  48. Tunmi

    August 7, 2015 at 6:18 am

    Wow. Many of us need therapy. Writing about it and sharing stories is one way but a lot here truly need to see a counselor.

    Not every woman should be a mother. But Naija’s way of forcing women to define themselves by having children whether they can fulfill the roles of motherhood or not is something else.

    I wish you all peace

  49. Dee

    August 7, 2015 at 7:50 am

    Going through these sad comments,memories I have erased just flooded my mind all over again. Mime was so bad, I was emotionally tormented by both my mum and dad.

    And I was the kind of girl you’ll call ‘goody-two-shoes, born again sistuh, Church-everytime girl’. They’ll say hurtful things to me, I would sometimes burst into tears in their presence and they would say, I need to work on my emotions, i have a sad spirit…lol. I look back now and smile because it’s all in the past.

    And I believe God saw all the pain I went through with my mum and dad (it was like they both ganged up against me) that He decided to bless me with a loving husband and pleasant mother -in-law that treats me so well, i find it so hard believe (considering that my mum had said to me in the past that any mother-in-law i have will show me ‘pepper’). I rebuked & renounced that statement through prayers.

    So to my sisters here who had a bad experience with their mum, all I can say is Forgive. Forgive your mum. For me, I had to constantly say to myself, I forgive my mum and dad until it resonated in my heart and I finally accepted it.

    After forgiving, forget what they said or did to you. It was my husband who exposed me to this reality recently because he noticed I was crying impulsively a lot especially after talking to my parents over the phone. He counseled me to forget every hurtful word they ever said and start thinking happy and positive thoughts. It’s hard to forget I must say, but if you don’t, you won’t be totally free. Your future relationships will be affected. I know this because my mother-in-law tries to have a daughter-mother relationship with me, as she never had a girl child but I just have a huge wall and I don’t want to get close.

  50. Doc

    August 7, 2015 at 12:51 pm

    I randomly came across this post. As a Psychologyist, do you know what I did? I sent the link to a couple of Women, told them to take time to read the post and the lengthy comments, and also send the link to other Women. I advise some of you ladies on here to do same.
    Anyone can be a Mum or a Dad, but not everyone has the qualities. Nigerians think that completing a degree is a prerequisite for marriage, but fail to realize that a lot of girls/women cannot handle their own lives, talk more of additional lives; husband and kids. Many women are also very immature, there’s a different between childishness and immaturity; immaturity is even worse. When you’re immature, you cannot handle life, even a home. It affects how you see and judge issues, your reasoning, it affects your marital life, career life, and even Parenting. You’ll be surprised that age doesn’t determine maturity, and that some women and men in their 40s or even older are grossly immature. It severely affects their thinking, and they may not even realize it. Also, education doesn’t get rid of ignorance. Being well travelled also, doesn’t determine exposure. All these factors affect the way people think, see life, and raise kids. A lot of women, including men, have no conscience and integrity. When you have no conscience, you won’t see the bad in anything you do. Some Parents have provoked their kids to the extent that they talk back at them. I know a former colleague who verbally insulted and picked on her child all the time. The child eventually started talking back at her. While I don’t support this, as a Parent, you can’t insult and pick on your child everyday, and expect the child not to talk. Even if it takes years, one day they’ll talk back. As children are urged to respect their Parents, as Parents, we also mustn’t provoke our kids. Also this archaic mentality of putting way too much responsibility of 1st kids, has to stop. They have lives of their own.
    Parents, learn from this.

  51. Ade

    August 7, 2015 at 6:33 pm

    At 22, my mum’s friend saw a picture I took with a guy on my phone. So she told my mum and next thing, my mum woke me up at 1am called me a prostitute, whore, slut and all sorts till 4am… She went ahead to say I am already sleeping with d guy. She didn’t see d picture oooo, her friend told her ni….. Since den I don’t think I have done anything right in her sight. I am 24 now and I scared to tell her I’m in a relationship. Help me oooo!

  52. Therapist Needed

    August 7, 2015 at 7:27 pm

    I couldnt help getting emotional as I read thru most comments cos it all reminded me of the major reason why I have refused to pick my mum’s phone nor speak with her for several months now. I used to think I was abnormal but reading all these stories gives me some kind of relief that I am not alone.

    All I seek now is to heal from all the hurt and learn to forgive but I don’t see that happening anytime soon. That’s why I would ask Bella Naija or anyone who knows to help out with the contacts of available and good therapists that can handle these traumas. It would really be of great help to me especially.

    Thanks.

    • Anonymous

      August 8, 2015 at 5:23 pm

      Hey Hun.
      If you’re in Lagos Nigeria, contact Lanre Olusola. He is a life coach. I googled him, got his yahoo email and sent him an email, he has counseled me before.

    • Therapist Needed

      August 8, 2015 at 9:00 pm

      Wow, thanks a lot dear. I appreciate.

  53. tola

    August 12, 2015 at 12:16 pm

    Let go people ,i have my story too but i no fit even type.Let us forgive them,i realise it’s a cycle,i guess that was the way they were raised by their mom’s too.The good news is i think mothers of this generation are becoming more aware.I agree with the person who said if you can’t love 7 children equally ,they stay at 2.

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