Spending time with mom usually conjures up images of Mother’s Day brunches or afternoon tea, thoughtful gifts “just because,” and long phone calls on weekends. Sometimes, though, there’s nothing to be celebrated–no close relationships or treasured memories with a woman we traditionally know as “mother.”

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And, that’s okay too.

Over on Love What Matters, one daughter doesn’t celebrate her mother after a childhood of suffering abuse and narcissism. But still she has a message of hope for daughters in similar situations.

Ever since this quarantine started, I’ve been dealing with something I know is not unique to my life. Today I’ve finally found the confidence to share it with you all – and I hope it helps you, or someone you know who is going through this, feel less alone in the world.

You see, my quarantine is much different than others. I don’t have family loving me from a distance. I don’t have a mom to Facetime and check in with, or a parent to tell me, ‘I love you’ during these trying times. The truth is, global pandemic or not, those words would never come out of her mouth. Unless they were meant to manipulate me in some way.

The writer’s mother has narcissistic personality disorder and she recalls feeling relieved to know she wasn’t the one causing the abuse. It was through the diagnosis that she was able to give up the burden of blame.

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She still cares for the woman that gave birth to her. But knowing beyond doubt they could never have a healthy relationship has made the cutting remarks and taunting texts in the middle of the night easier to accept for what they are–a lashing out of a sick mind.

Despite all she’s done to me, I still sent her a box of canned goods, non-perishables, and toilet paper. I never heard back. I never heard a thank you. The truth is, no matter what she does or says, I will never not be able to care for her. I guess that’s the curse of having the same blood. I will always show her kindness. But I will never, ever let myself believe her despicable words. I’ve fallen into that trap one too many times, and I will not let her destroy my healing journey.

She is finding peace with herself and her mother and she urges all daughters who have felt the sting of rejection from their narcissistic mothers to not “let them get you down.”

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No matter what issues our society is facing, abuse is not your fault. Keep yourself and your loved ones safe.

The world is full of mothers, sisters, brothers and friends. Even if they aren’t official family, let them shower you with peace and love.

It’s relationships that count, not birth certificates.