After Betty brought me home from a short shopping trip, she said to me out of the blue, “I feel I have a lot of making up to do.” Surprised I said, “I don’t know what you’re talking about.” She said, “Well I’m not going to give you a list.” I laughed because it was blunt and purely honest, just funny to me so I laughed. She did, too. I left the subject alone because the last thing I want is to allow myself to believe she’ll change. I need to keep up the protective walls I’ve built so she can’t inflict careless wounds.

She’s aware I don’t trust her and that I am drawing away from her. She knows I have no longer desire to get closer or to try to know her better because she told me straight out that I don’t need to know her and that I have to accept that. I am who I am, she said, and I’m not going to change.

The same day she told me I don’t need to know her is the same day she said she doesn’t see me as a daughter. She said because of who I am, a black woman, it was embarrassing for me to call her mom in public.  That’s a deep hurt and difficult to heal. I cried so hard. I was so hurt too when she told me she doesn’t think of me as a daughter. I humiliated myself that day. I cried so hard and said, “Why is it so difficult to accept me as a daughter? I would have been a good daughter.” Of course I wasn’t entirely talking to her. While saying those things I was also talking to my biological mother. “Why is it so hard to love me? I would have been a good daughter.” There was a begging tone to what I was saying. I felt abandoned and sucker punched…again. I felt like a fool for breaking down and saying I just needed to be loved, to belong to someone, to be accepted. Her response was cold and harsh. I have a feeling Betty knows there is great hurt still.

She said she doesn’t want to know anything about me but she’ll listen to whatever I say. She said she’ll tell me nothing because I don’t need to know anything about her. Those words are hard to forget and aren’t covered under the ambiguous and random statement: I have a lot to make up to you.

There will always be pain associated with not being anyone’s daughter, of feeling like it takes a huge effort to love me. That pain won’t go anywhere soon, but leaving is anyone willing to carelessly walk on my heart or throw salt in my wounds. It’s taken awhile but I am certain this friendship is coming to a slow, slow crawl with huge amounts of space between us.

Why not kick her to the curb now? Betty is Snow’s sister and I don’t want to cause friction. If I take steps to put distance between me and Betty then it can be seen as us ‘growing our separate ways’. A little at a time is better than just dropping her on her head and leaving myself open to emotional retaliation. There’s actually a plan, a strategy to break away from her.


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