12 November 2007

The More Suffering, The Better

"Where does discipline end? Where does cruelty begin? Somewhere between these, thousands of children inhabit a voiceless hell." ~ Francois Mauriac

My mom and I were watching a Thanksgiving-themed program on the Food Channel this weekend. She reminded me that my dad wouldn't allow her to have a potato masher. When we had mashed potatoes, she had to do it with a fork.

It's a small, mean thing to make one's work harder than it has to be. It was just another way my father enjoyed making her life miserable. I have to remind myself periodically: My father thought it was fun to watch other people suffer. The more suffering, the better.

Remembering that fact always makes me feel like someone has stabbed me in the heart.


Anonymous said...

Times were different back then, women were expected to be obedient and respectful of their husbands. I am so glad that in today's time women have a mind of their own and a will to use it. Most of all I am thankful that respect in now earned verses given to you at birth based on your gender. Civilization and society's norms have come a long way in the past fifty years. Thank God! Or I would proably have used that fork on someone's gender. !@! I thought they were red potatoes, silly me!@!

Have a delightful day!

vg said...

Wait a minute!..I'm sure Z's mother had a mind of her own...Geez, this woman and child were afraid of this man.

CRAP! Sorry Z, but some people....

zennist said...

Hi vg,
Thank you. My mom and I *were* terrified of my father. We had good reason to be.

No need to apologize. Thank you for pointing out the reality of things.

zennist said...

Hello anonymous,
Thank you for your comment. My mom definitely had a mind of her own. As a matter of fact, that caused her to be subjected to terrifying violence. When you live with a man like my father, you may have a mind of your own, but you'd better never let him know it. He will try to kill it.

The past 50 years? I'm not so old as you think I am. Furthermore, I guarantee that there are still thousands upon thousands of women and children who live in the same kind of terror we did.

Anonymous said...

I am very sorry my comments seemed to upset you vg and zennist. It was not meant in that way at all. I was trying to say women in general have come a long way as far as not letting society dictate them, it was meant as a very good thing. And the part about fork and red potatoes I was trying to give zennist a giggle to lighten up her day a little. I was very sincere when I said have a delightful day, I didn't mean it in a smart way. By no means was I trying to say your mom didn't have a mind of her own. I was basically trying to say, even though I didn't seem to do a good job of it, that use to abuse was not talked about, it was secret behind closed doors, and now days society is more accepting as far as standing up and saying hey this is not right. Also you see more awareness about domestic voilence and more help for women and children now then you did back then.
I truly apologize with my whole heart, I never meant to offend or anger anyone. I was trying to write a feel good comment with a giggle at the end. Obviously I failed terribly. I am very sorry vg and zennist.

zennist said...

Hello Anonymous,
No need to apologize! I understand now what you mean. That's the problem with written communication--you can't always judge how someone is feeling based on the words on the page. I *did* laugh when I read the part about the fork on someone's gender.

Thank you so much for clarifying. I wasn't so much angry as just trying to share my experience of how the world works (sadly). I was baffled that someone would think things have changed. I misunderstood you.

You're very kind and I also hope you have a delightful day!

vg said...

Thank you anonymous. I'm glad you came back and cleared that up.

Hi Z, hope you had a good day.
I was out of town most of the day and just now getting on.