My grandmother who raised me was a walking nightmare

By Jacquerex09

My childhood royally f**ked up my mental health. I’d like to state upfront that my parents weren’t my main caregivers. I mean, they paid for everything but didn’t feature much in my life whilst growing up. My grandmother raised me and she was a walking nightmare.

I was born with a learning disability for math/anything math-related (visual perception difficulties+spectrum dyscalculia) but I excelled in the humanities. I did pretty well and attended top schools (including a premier junior college and the National University of Singapore) but this was never good enough for my grandma. She always called me stupid, compared me to other people and demeaned my achievements. I was a recipient of the MOE Humanities scholarship back in JC and my grandmother was the only one in my family to mock me for it. She insisted that the whole thing was a fluke and that I was only awarded the scholarship because she prayed to God and therefore He gave it to me. I had home tuition in order to improve my math and science grades; on too many occasions my grandma would literally walk in halfway during lesson and instruct the tutor to give me more math homework because I was “lazy”. She never once went easy on me and would constantly scream at me for my “terrible” math grades (for crying out loud I consistently achieved solid As/Bs from secondary school all the way till JC which I was pretty proud of given my disabilities). She would go on a rant about how disabilities are fake and that I was just plain lazy. She even yelled at me during the rare instance when I brought home an A for math because that A was typically a low distinction. Even now, she’ll demean any As I score in university if they happen anywhere below 80. I once got an 87 for my mid term; ever since she believed that attaining anything below an 80 meant I wasn't sufficiently hardworking. She used to slap me if I ever dared to defend myself or “defy” her wishes.

Not to mention that she was (and still is) incredibly overprotective. She didn’t let me take public transport on my own until I was 13 years old and even then, if I didn’t arrive home by a certain time (an hour after my classes ended), she would go berserk. She used to feed me until I was about 15 years old. I would obviously tell her to stop but she’d just ignore me. She STILL personally applies dermatological creams onto my skin because apparently, I am too retarded to apply them myself. I have mild eczema and she obviously blames me for my condition.

For everyone who is wondering why my parents never stepped in even though they knew about how much I was suffering, here are the main reasons. My grandmother raised my mother, naturally she’s gotten used to that kind of abusive treatment and thus tells me to just suck it up. My mom loves to point to the fact that we are wealthy and as such, I have no right to complain. My father was barely at home and he didn’t give a shit about me. I was just a “trophy child” to him and he’d always boast about my academic achievements to his friends.

As to why I’m still living with her as an adult (not sure if having recently turned 20 counts as being an adult), it’s because I have nowhere else to go. She resides in our family home for the most part, even though she has her own abode. I could always get a part time job and rent a flat or something but I’m already under immense pressure from studying for my exams all this while. Besides, if I ever rented a flat, I’d become the laughing stock of my whole family. They reckon only poor people reside in HDB flats, so I'd probably end up getting despised and called a loser.

I’ve been diagnosed with anxiety disorder and I find it difficult to make friends or even interact meaningfully with other human beings. My psychiatrist tells me that I will “eventually” become less anxious about life and that the anti-anxiety medications he has prescribed will help, but honestly I am tired of being distrustful of others, even if they are extremely kind to me. I have a small group of friends and my grandma demeans them even though they are the nicest folks I have ever met. I am close to one girl who studies in a polytechnic and she will constantly berate me for being acquainted with someone who is intellectually “inferior”. As for my other friends in university, she will call them losers whenever we play video games together because apparently, only losers play video games. Add to that, she never failed to yell at me each time I went out to meet them. :/ She also sniggers at the fact I do not have a boyfriend yet because at my age, my mom already had one (as well as many suitors) while I’m still single. I don’t think she understands that I WANT to be single because I know that I’m not emotionally ready to handle being in a relationship.

If you hate your life, try living mine.


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