Happy No-Guilt, No-Mom Mother’s Day

For all of you who, like the gringa, did not call up dear old mom to say, “Happy Mother’s Day,” don’t feel guilty. I don’t. And here’s why.

A mother is the first person a child loves and trusts. A child enters the relationship completely inexperienced. It is up to the grown-up in the relationship, the mother, to do the right thing. If a mom doesn’t get it right, just ask a psychoanalyst how severe the consequences could be. After all, some of the most violent and dangerous criminals in the world have “mommy issues”.

The gringa no longer has mommy issues. That’s because the gringa recognized (far too late in life) that mommy was poison and said a final good-bye. It’s not just that the gringa had been betrayed, that I could have forgiven. I have never expected any person I have a relationship with to be perfect. I’m not perfect. I do, however, expect them to respect certain boundaries. Step across boundaries and lives can be destroyed. Not just the gringa’s but also the lives of my children and husband. Cross that line and you are gone forever. And the gringa will feel no guilt.

If you, like the gringa, loved and trusted your mother for years, tenderly overlooking her flaws as only a devoted child can, and then discovered that she would destroy the lives of your loved ones or yourself and carry no remorse in her heart for it, feel absolutely no guilt about having a no-mother Mother’s Day.

In fact, don’t be quiet about observing a No-Guilt, No-Mom Mother’s Day. I promise you that there are many others, just like you, who are suffering in a shamefaced silence. They shouldn’t be. Your mother’s decisions are not your fault. Before she was a mother she was just a regular old person. If she were not your mother, just some neighbor or random person on the street, those same behaviors that have driven you away guiltily would equally drive you away guilt-free. Don’t feel guilt because you saved your life by abandoning a relationship simply because of biological connection.

Daughters and sons are people, too. A biological connection does not demand that we celebrate the one person we should have been able to trust for our entire lives who, instead, became hellbent on destroying us one way or another. Just as a man can be only a sperm donor, walking away from a child and deserving none of the perks and honors of fatherhood, the same can be said for bad moms. Being an egg donor does not entitle you to ruin my life forever, hence ruining the lives of my husband, children and grandchildren as well.

Celebrate, instead, all of you with self-imposed orphan status, your own courage to pursue a life of happiness, enriched with healthy relationships that are secure from outsider tampering. Celebrate your courage to do this despite the social stigma and criticism you will receive for not honoring the woman who “gave you life”. Go to brunch. If you are a mom yourself, celebrate yourself twice. Hold your head high. Have the best, damn No-Guilt, No-Mom Mother’s Day ever. Cheers from the gringa.

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A barrio gringa with a dream of cosmic proportions: writing to satiate my insatiable curiosity, worldwide literacy beginning with our youth, and to be the first barrio gringa to explore outer space!

3 thoughts on “Happy No-Guilt, No-Mom Mother’s Day”

  1. Amen! While I do have a good relationship with my mother, I don’t speak to many biological relatives, including my father, and feel no guilt for that. Like you said, a biological connection isn’t everything. Family is in the heart, not the bloodstream. I chose who my “family” is.


  2. Thank you Gringa, for your insightful post. I have a close friend whose mother was a selfish narcissist. My friend suffered from her mother’s cruelty until the day the old woman died. Such a waste.


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