Dear Mum, Sorry I got educated


Was living alone with my brother after finishing uni as my mother had moved in with her new hubby.

He became increasingly hostile, breaking my stuff and threatening violence, until I was forced to call the police and live on a friends sofa.

When I told my mother about what had happened, she said ‘well, what do you expect dear, you went to university and made him look stupid’. It must be #MFIF.


12 Responses to “Dear Mum, Sorry I got educated”

  1. Lorrie Says:

    Did I write this? Or are we sisters?!

    I got really good exam results. My mother refused to congratulate me on them and, when I asked her why, she told me that my brother hadn’t achieved the same. When I told her that he could have, if he’d worked, she got angry and said, “Yes, well he didn’t, did he?”.

    That was the last we heard of my exam results. Hey, I guess it’s MFIF.

  2. Chelsea Says:

    @ Both of you: I feel for you, I really do. I don’t really get much reaction from my family about good results or anything, but not because I have a male contender in the family, it’s just because they expect it now, so it’s not like i need congratulating or anything.

    @OP: I’m sorry, but your mum is horrible. Making someone look stupid is no excuse for violence. Your brother is an oaf of his own doing, not yours.

  3. n Says:

    This actually sounds pretty insightful on your mom’s part. Is it really something sexist she was saying? Was she actually BLAMING you for his bad behaviour or was she maybe understanding the cause of it (which doesn’t let him off the hook BTW)?

    • IMTB Says:

      Yeah, it doesn’t seem that sexist until you understand the dynamics of our culture — the male ego always comes first — often at a woman’s expense (physical, emotional, intellectual). She was not blaming me directly, but justifying it via his ‘ego-priviledge’ and minimizing my experience.

      Strangely, when something of a similar scale happened to him, she took him under her wing. She justifies this as him being ’emotionally vulnerable’ which I don’t remember her saying about me. And she helped him get back on his feet.

      It seems a reversal of most casual sexism which views woman as the weaker sex — until you think of it as two gender neutral people — one of whom clearly has a privileged position of being understood, helped, nourished to develop and get over the trauma — the other accused of causing the problem and left to their own devices to resolve a situation where they are left homeless which was caused solely by the threat they cause to others by fulfilling their ambitions.

    • Kerry Says:

      I think she would know if her mother was being sexist or not N.

  4. Brittany-Ann Says:

    N, or she was just sexist. Because really, abuse? Not cool. I shouldn’t have to say this, but when the first thing your mother says after hearing that you’ve been threatened and abused is “well, what did you expect” that’s not her trying to be understanding and supportive of her children. It’s her blaming HER OWN DAUGHTER for being abused.

    • A Different Sam Says:

      And, worse still, she’s blaming her own daughter for being abused on the grounds that her daughter was apparently asking for it or something by, uh, getting an education. Because apparently she was supposed to throw away her whole life just to stop her idiot brother from feeling inferior?

  5. K Says:

    I don’t think this has anything to do with you being female. It could be viewed in the same way if it was a sister…

  6. The Heff Says:

    Christ. I think nthis blog should be changed to “Some people are absolute ARSEHOLES”.

  7. IMTB Says:

    To be fair my mother was raised that way, and my father treated her the same way. I don’t blame her, but rather the culture that perpetuates this kind of behaviour as normal.
    I don’t justify it, but I do call her up on her behaviour and the more I do so, the more 1) she accepts that she is being sexist 2) I learn what she’s put up with, and it’s clear that it’s internalised sexism. It’s such a complex thing to untangle because I don’t want to justify her sexism or ‘let it go’ but at the same time I would rather better our relationship and communication by highlighting these things and demanding more respectful treatment from her than just creating a break from it. I think networks between women are very important and we all make mistakes, and it is our responsability to remind each other.

  8. Dude Says:

    He didn’t need your help looking stupid.

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