This morning I received an email message from a public health nurse who is trying to get medical and other needed help for my elderly parents. In the message she said she was required to report abuse, which my father still gives my mother, to the state authorities. I was stunned and yet realized she was right. And I felt like the nightmares I have been having was now taking place in the daytime. I was being presented an opportunity to help my mother get some relief from abuse. And yet I struggled, because I don't want to hurt either of my parents. They are old. They don't have very many more years to live. They love each other. Dad truly loves Mom, while also getting angry at her and expressing it now through verbal abuse, unlike when I was younger when it was also physical abuse.
I began crying, then sobbing, big sobs, for a long time. It felt like a lifetime of others not knowing finally coming out into the light. Of course, I've been sharing some on this blog, but that doesn't help my mother. Finally, someone who can help is stepping in to help.
It is scary. I don't want others in my big extended family to blame me for turning in my own father and upsetting the "family system." I don't want family members angry at me. I don't want my father angry at me. I don't want him to commit suicide from shame.
It is easier just to keep silent. That's one of the rules for dysfunctional, abusive family situation. But I had to tell the truth. I didn't realize it might result in an investigation from Adult Protective Services for abuse and possible elderly neglect. But if Mom can be helped, and maybe Dad, too, if somehow he can cooperate and understand what he is doing wrong, it is the right thing to do.
I hope there are people out there reading this who understand what I'm saying and can empathize. I need to be understood today.