My relationship with my parents was toxic. My father only spoke to me when he was drunk. He would enjoy provoking me with hurtful words, and when he was doing so, his face was in a distorted sneer, his mouth greased with alcohol.
On one Friday, I didn’t go home as a protest to my parents – to father for his bullying, and mother for doing nothing to stop him. My friend Miho let me stay with her that night. She told me she also despised her father. That evening, when we were chatting in Miho’s room, her father came outside the door and asked us what we were up to. I could tell he was inebriated. Miho had to him to go away several times before he finally left us be.
The following day, I called my mother, and she picked me up at the station. She acted as if nothing happened and cheerfully talked about the day. I wished she had asked me why I didn’t come home and what was troubling me. She avoided any conversation that would cause her distress, and when I pressed, she would tell me I was ungrateful for complaining about small things. I was unable to express my anger outwardly with music or arts or sports because I was busy studying. Anger was internalized and absorbed and festered me from inside. All I could do was speak to my parents with as much disdain as I was capable of containing. I asked for lots of money, too, without remorse, as I thought I could solve some of my problems materially. My mother would tolerate me because that was the only way she could show she cared. She endured my father’s domination, my grandfather’s dogmatism, and the general servitude as a wife because forbearance was a virtue for my mother.