Guest Writer: Feride
My grandmother and grandfather divorced when my mother was two years old. My grandmother could not stand the “widow women” label and she left. She went to Germany for work and left my mother to her own mother. There, she struggled to stand on her own feet there for a few years. She got my mom in with her when everything got a little better. My grandmother’s biggest lifelong goal was to survive as a widow woman. In Germany, she worked three jobs simultaneously. As you see she worked round the clock. My mother had to grow up alone. My mother felt like she was away from her even when she was next to her. My grandmother strove to make my mother self-sufficient. Yet, my mother was in need of her mother at most. My mother always tells, “My mother tried to keep me away from the labels of ‘the daughter of a widow’ and imposed so much things on me.” My grandmother repressed my mother in a way that even society did not. My mother had to carry the weight of the loneliness in her soul and tried to move on with her life. She met my father after years. But her mother’s hatred of men was so great that she hurt the relationship between my mother and father all the time. This was because my grandfather cheated on my grandmother. My mother witnessed this with her own eyes. All her life, she saw every male this way and acted like this. My mother always says, ” I tried to start a family without knowing how to be a family, what family means and how mothers behave in home. That’s why I’ve always behaved uncomprehendingly”. I myself felt the oppression of my mother on me for a long time. Society’s oppression of virginity become my mother’s oppression of me as well. She married as a virgin woman who later had to live with the label of being the “daughter of widow”. She wanted to raise me in this way, as a virgin. Of course, to teach right and wrong is the responsibility of the mother but all that oppression also can lead to unintentional wrongdoing. Yet, my mother committed herself to manifest me what she has been manifested during her childhood:
I was about 4 or 5 years old. With a childly enthusiasm, I tried to ride my brother’s bicycle and I had an accident since I did not know how to ride. When I came home after the accident, I noticed a blood stain on my underwear. My mother reacted like her world collapsed when I told this. She called the neighbors and they all gathered around me with a huge fuss. My mother caused me to get a traumatic memory that I cannot forget by doing so. At the middle of the house, five pair of eyes were inspecting me to see whether I have lost my virginity or not! They have decided that a scratch in my vagina caused bleeding as a result of their inspection. (I did not even know what vagina was is.) This curious community was now calm.
Actually, my mother is my best friend. But this pressure that I had on me for some time left deep marks in my life. My mother believed in that this was the right way. This belief lasted until when my mother understood that I could love as well and until when I sorrow for this love. My mother even chose a preparatory school that consisted of female students only. She was trying to minimize the possibility for me to have a boyfriend. The irony is that I met my husband at this school. Exceptionally, the school decided that students from vocational high schools, including me, should be gathered at a mixed class. That’s how we started our relationship. My mother took all these as a big sign. We on the other hand, got married some years later.
I have become aware of the scars of all the repression I had to suffer in my past on my wedding night. That night ended up me watching the sheets because of the pressure of virginity mark. Now I am writing and criticizing all of these. The biggest irony is that I still keep that sheet that has “the virginity mark” under my bed even though I am married for four years now…