Voice in my Head


It is difficult to keep mom’s voice out of my head. My little Maltese nuzzles her body between my feet. Mom’s voice whispers as I sit on my recliner, fingers poised on the computer, the click click click of the clock. I compulsively write a sentence, become disgusted at its imperfection and hit the backspace key.

Her voice speaks louder, more insistent. Not good enough. Make it better. This voice hurts my mind, my writing, my future. I thought the voice had subsided to an infrequent whisper. Lately, it has grown louder, angrier, more abusive as I try to assert myself and let myself become who I’m supposed to be.

I was never taught to cook or do much of anything for myself. She did everything for me even though I was independent-minded and wanted to do things for myself, my way not hers. A few days ago, I made broccoli alfredo for dinner. As I pour milk out of the measuring cup into a sauce pan, my hand shakes. I lay the cup down and accidentally bump the cheese grater into the sink. I jump. I try to breath. As I sit down at the kitchen table I feel hot. I felt her in the kitchen with me, telling me I wasn’t doing it the correct way. The loudest whisper I heard was “Don’t you dare go messin.”

It took time to gather myself and go back to making my dinner. You can survive on your own, I tell myself. You know how to take care of yourself. In the background she whispers no you can’t.

I spoke to Auntie on the phone tonight and she said I was using mom’s voice to further abuse myself.

She gave me a new mantra. “You are talented. You can write.”

I’m going to try this even though when she said it I felt embarrassed of myself for no logical reason. I’m programmed from childhood to feel like I have no right to feel good about myself. When someone infers that there is something to feel good about I’m anxious to accept it as truth.

The emotional abuse twisted my self-image and mangled my self-esteem. Little by little, I’m attempting to fight her voice. I’m substituting Auntie’s mantra. “You are talented. You can write.”

6 thoughts on “Voice in my Head

  1. Alaina says:

    My head is really wonky lately. As I was sitting here wishing for a quick and easy way to silence the momster’s voice — which I still sometimes wrestle with, as well — I had a mental image of a big roll of duct tape.

    You know, that duct tape is good for everything. 🙂

  2. Alaina says:

    I hope my first comment didn’t come across like I was making light of this. There is nothing more soul-annihilating than hearing the belittling critical abusive voice of your unloving mother invading your private thoughts, following you everywhere you go. If only duct tape would work.

    • bdlheart says:

      No worries. Started to respond and had a mess up with tablet. Dam touch screen! Lol. Duck tape is a great visualization tool. Kind of a funny picture. Dark humor indeed.

      • Alaina says:

        Duct tape is a wonderful thing, lol.

        Typing on a touchscreen can be…. touchy. I am writing this on my Kindle reader. Wouldn’t want to try to write an entire post like this.

      • bdlheart says:

        I wrote a couple brief posts on my tablet and it was so annoying I swore I’d never do it again. Keyboard. Old school style. Lol

  3. giasuniverse says:

    You are indeed a very good and talented writer Bdlheart! But I know it is hard to get that confidence when you are looked at as useless all your life. Your Auntie is amazing, I said it before, but she really has some wisdom, her advice is priceless. Some people put little sticky notes with positive affirmations around their house.
    Oh, how well I remember the clumsiness, I was called all kinds of names because I frequently dropped, spilled things. Often the harder I tried, the more I messed up because of the pressure and nerves which only further confirmed what my father said about me.
    And if I do something quite good I downplay it, and I feel somewhat embarrassed when I receive a praise or compliment like I do not really deserve it.
    But it is getting better, whatever you keep hearing sticks 🙂 So yes, I will say it again that you have a gift and your writing is very good, the way you convey feelings, and how you describe the surroundings it transports the reader right there! Keep going! Much Love Gia xox

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