Let me start the day by saying, “Being a parent is so hard.”

Two facts about me.

  1. I was abandoned at age seven my by my mother.
  2. I was raised by an abusive father.

I do not believe that every choice, good or bad, that we make in life is hinged on the kind of upbringing we had, but our upbringing does make it’s mark. The first misconception I had about love was that I if I just loved hard enough and good enough people wouldn’t hurt me and and people wouldn’t leave me.

Most of the big decisions I have made in my life can probably be “psychologically” explained through the lens of my childhood.

“Your issues with your siblings are due to the trauma bonding you experienced as a child.” One counselor informed me.

“You fell in love with the first man that showed you any kindness, because you never received that from your father.” Another suggested.

“You think that if you love your husband hard enough and good enough, he will put down the bottle and give up the coke? asked another.

And that is love lesson #1. No matter how much you try to “love someone” they have free will to change or not change, to love you in return or not. This is true for your spouse, your parents, your siblings, your friends, and even your children.

This is a hard lesson and one that I am still not a master at. It is a lesson that helps me have grace for my own parents.

My first mark towards progress in this lesson, was when I made the decision to leave my first husband. The plot is probably familiar. I was a senior in high school and was “saving myself” for the right guy. Along came an out-of-towner with a cool haircut, a sweet voice, and a smooth tongue. He was older by five years and he was the best thing ever. I was complete putty. I finished high school and ran off to college and secretly “lived in sin” with this man until I couldn’t tolerate my conscience any longer. I begged him to marry me and make me an honest woman. We got married in the den of a neighbor’s house without my family’s knowledge nor blessing, but I was determined that our “love for each other” was all we needed. I was wrong. We were married for two years. When the third round of rehab did no good and I came home to my screaming baby and a passed out husband, I had had enough. I wasn’t going to raise my daughter this way. I would fix it for My little Faith.

Now, Faith is the age I was as a young bride and the last thing I want for her, is for her life to be a mirror of my own. As a parent, I have tripped up so many times. My decisions about my own life’s path have directly affected her in so many ways. How do I free her from my own bad decisions?

I can’t. I cannot take away the pain she feels that her “real” dad never fought for her. I cannot take away the pain caused by “David the offender”. I cannot take away the pain she felt when I divorced Chris. I cannot take away the pain she felt when I kicked her out at 18. I cannot take away the pain she if feeling this very moment as she tries to navigate her own “adult” life. And I cannot remove my own guilt for being such a failure of a parent.

But God can. God can take my own abusive childhood and remind me that this love lesson #1 is from HIM. His is the only perfect love. His is the only life changing love. His is the only love that can erase the pain, guilt, and trauma that I have experienced…and that I have caused. And I hope that if I can continue to make progress in this Love lesson #1 He will provide the escape for Faith as well.

My Little Faith and her boyfriend Rick


No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

1st Corinthians 10:13

~The hurting daughter and failing mother

I forgot to add, this book is on my To Read list:

Consensual Consequences: A True Story of Life with a Registered Sex Offender

by Lynn Gilmore

3 thoughts on “Love lesson #1

  1. I love this! It sounds as if you and I are at a similar place in our journey and God is doing amazing things. I strongly agree that our kids will learn more and grow more by watching our growth in Christ. He is the only One that can fill that void for us but moms and dads can walk the talk by honoring Him in the way we choose to live and love today, in this moment. I’m excited to watch your “love” journey. ♥️

    Like

    1. Your post about your daughter really touched me and brought me to tears. I will have more about my own experience as “a mother of a daughter in love with the daughter of another”! 🙂 Be blessed!

      Liked by 1 person

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