I had a dream last night that really disturbed me. As the day has gone on, the feelings have become more and more intense.

I dreamt that I was in the dining area of my childhood home. Dad was sat at the dining table, Mum was in the kitchen area. The room was unbearably hot with steam swarming around the room making it difficult to see clearly, although I could see enough to see the house hasn’t changed at all over the last twenty years. Unable to stand the heat any longer, I opened the window, releasing a torrent of steam. I watched relief wash over Mum and then I sensed that she would be able to help too. The word ‘oppression’ came to my mind as the dream ended. Oppression – the exercise of authority in a burdensome, cruel or unjust way.

My dream confirmed what I feared all along. My childhood was not as it should have been, it was marred by cruelty. The opening of the window brought relief, not only for myself but for my mum too. Could it be that I am trying to right the wrongs that my mum endured? Yet so many of my memories are negative memories of my Mum, not just my Dad.

Was mum’s negativity purely centrered around her state of mind from the cruelty that she said she endured from my Dad? I know that back then, mum was deeply depressed and totally shut off from her feelings and emotions, unable to express joy and pride, unable to experience anything other than a life of misery and heartache. Am I centering all of my hurt and anger at my mum because it’s safer? Am I angry with my mum for not saving me from Dad’s cruelty? Why did she stand by and do nothing? Could she not see the damage he was inflicting and that in turn, she was inflicting it too? It’s almost as if I accepted Dad’s abuse but I can’t accept what my mum did or didn’t do. Am I letting history repeat itself?

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