I think you have forgotten this, but its me, your daughter. Yea, you have one of those, I promise. I know that to you I died 11 years ago when I chose not to follow the religious path you set out for me, but I am not dead. I am alive and kicking, and I am still your daughter. I am writing you this letter because I can't talk to you. Actually, its not because I can't, but its because you won't. I can't call you up to say hi and see how your day was, let alone have a serious heartfelt discussion. This will obviously be one sided with no chance for you to jump in and defend your actions, but that is by your choice. I wish I could talk to you in person. I wish I could hug you and tell you I love you. I wish you loved me.
Do you remember when you were in your car accident? You spent a week in the hospital, including 3 days in the ICU. Do you remember who never left your side, who slept in the hospital room with you so that you never had to wake up alone, who fed you ice chips when your mouth was dry, and who advocated for you when it was necessary? That was me. I knew that if the situation was reversed, you wouldn't do the same for me, but I could not let your actions define mine. You are my mother and you needed me, so I was there. It hurts me so much sometimes though to know that it changed nothing. That I am still dead to you.
How can you be that way? I just don't understand. As a mother now myself, I can not understand ever ignoring my child the way that you ignore me, no matter what they did.
You raised me in the religion for 18 years, and all of its teachings and beliefs were pounded into my head. I know how it works, you are controlled by fear. We were taught that we could not make any mistakes, and that if we did everyone we knew would abandon us. I am well aware of all that is taught, yet I still know I would not be able to do that to my children. Nor do I believe that God would want me to. And to be perfectly honest, if He did, then I don't want to worship Him anyway. Nothing is worth losing my children.
I know that you hope to convert my children to follow your faith. I will never try to control my children or force them to believe or not believe in a certain way as I was, but I will tell you that I hope you fail at your attempts. I love my children very deeply, and I would hate to see them in an organization that will turn their backs on throw them out at a moments notice.
Do you have any idea the pain and emotional trauma that abandonment like that can cause? I pray that you never have to find out. I still love you and I wouldn't want you to have to hurt the way that I have.
The saddest part is that I don't even think you realize just how fucked up it is. For my first three years as a mother, I lived in constant fear that Armageddon was going to come, and my beautiful innocent children would be killed because of the sins of me, their mother. That is what you taught me, that is what your religion pounded into my head. Every time a thunderstorm happened, I would cower in a corner of my house, holding my kids close and praying that this wasn't the day they would be taken. I was brainwashed with fear.
I am trying very hard to move forward with my life, but it isn't easy. You never did what parents are supposed to do, and never prepared me for life in the real world. I did not know how to pay bills, balance a check book, or save money. I was taught that furthering my education by going to college was an evil and selfish thing to do. I did not know that real evil existed in the world, and I wasn't taught how to protect myself from it. The only people I was ever exposed to were in the religion, and I was taught to implicitly trust every person I met. Believe me when I tell you, that particular lesson has been a very, very difficult one to break.
I wish I could say or do something that would open your eyes, make you understand... But I can't. I cannot free you from the hold of that organization, and I have to accept that. I have to accept that I do not have a mother. I have no one I can call for advice or wisdom. No one to turn to for the affection I so desperately crave. You couldn't even give me a hug at grandmas funeral.
I have so much more that I want to say to you, so much that I want to make you understand. I wish you would talk to me.
I love you mom, I always will.
Your loving, out casted daughter.