My parents and I argue a lot. I’m 16, and of course I know that teens don’t get along with their parents all the time. But I don’t know, this just doesn’t seem quite normal to me. Or more like my reaction to it doesn’t seem normal.
I don’t trust my parents at all. They’ve done things like snooped in my emails, taken away my wifi (but let my brother, who’s 19, have it), lied to me, and confiscated a book on faith my friend let me borrow (still waiting to get it back…). They claim they trust me, but I don’t really believe them – their actions don’t back it up.
My parents also seem to want to dictate what I do with my life. I hate playing cello, but they won’t let me quit. I want to get more serious about soccer, but it doesn’t “count” for much in their eyes. They don’t really approve of hanging out with friends (but of course they won’t admit it) and they don’t want me going to youth group at church. I feel like I’m constantly competing with my brother, who is practically a genius. It’s almost like he can do no wrong in their eyes, and if he does, they often take it out on me. I feel like I can’t ever do the right thing and I’m always disappointing them. If I don’t stand up for myself, they walk all over me. When my brother came home from college for the end of the semester, he couldn’t believe the way they were treating me.
I react to all of this really harshly. At first, I was pretty patient about it, although really confused, but now I’m really bitter and angry. I instigate as many arguments as they do, and I blow up really fast. I’ve started hating myself really intensely; I just feel like I can’t do anything right. It seems like I react too harshly sometimes to the things that happen, and I don’t understand why. I mean it’s nothing big like my parents are getting divorced or something. It’s them making me feel like dirt and telling me I make everything impossible. The confusing part is that sometimes they can be so loving.
My faith is falling apart as well, which might be a result of all of this to an extent. I contacted one of the priests at our parish and I have an appointment with him, but my parents have no idea. It feels so weird because we were always really close and I feel a little like I’m betraying them. I don’t want to portray them badly, but at the same time, they’ve really hurt me and some of the things just don’t seem “normal” to me. Sometimes I’m not sure I’m being honest with myself or other people. I feel a little like I’m distorting the truth, because if I ever suggest something to my parents, they assure me they’re proud of me and they trust me, etc. Maybe they are proud of me, but that doesn’t take away what they’ve done to me. I guess I can’t get my head wrapped around the idea that my parents might not be as awesome as I always thought they were.
I guess I’m wondering… what’s going on here? I’m too close to it to know anymore. I feel like I’m going crazy, though. Is this normal? I feel kind of sick and panicky and I guess I’m looking for another perspective. Thanks.