Nicky – What’s up coronation welcome to another episode of Coin for Thought, today I have Sandra RossI here and she’s my amazing long-time friend we’ve been friends for 20 years now and she’s also a mortgage agent. So today we’re really going to be talking about her parents and you know growing up in a home that kind of fell apart. I guess so I mean we have really similar stories but they’re similar and different and so in so many different way so um so yeah you know like I really want to talk to you about how when you what your parents were really like growing up and how you saw you know their relationship sort of evolve.
Sandra – Yeah so they met in university, in Chile, for computer engineering I know they’ve been friends they dated for about two years before they got married their wedding was very low-key they just walked into the civic center with the very very close family uh maybe one friend and then signed the papers and then they went home and opened a bottle of wine that literally was their wedding yeah and and then they had me a year after and then the year after they had my brother.
Nicky – And was there a lot of pressure on your mom and dad to kind of tie the knot
Sandra – Yes very much so if it was up for my mom she would have never gotten married or had children yeah my dad did wanted to get married but as far as I know he didn’t want it to have children either, and the funny thing is that I asked my mom and she’s like yeah I felt I felt pressure from your dad to have children but then my dad says no I feel pressure from your mom. So I’m thinking okay both of them just felt the pressure from society. I mean we’re talking 1980s right. Like in the 80s right so that pressure…
Nicky – It’s also that communication I don’t think that they maybe turned around I’ve always imagined. I’ve always seen your parents being really really quiet. I’ve never actually seen your parents and all the times that like for us growing up. I’ve never seen your parents actually have a conversation. It’s so weird.
Sandra – You are right, I mean because again it wasn’t until we had to go through some family counseling to help my brother and my this was like years ago that I actually started hearing for the first time that my parents just never opened up a lot of better things now you need to keep in mind that in Chile you just have to suck it up. It’s that it’s that kind of culture like you cannot, it’s very latino, you don’t show weaknesses and when people talk to you they have no filter. Right so it’s very ruthless living in there
Nicky – So I understand it’s either one way or the other people are either not talking or they’re you know being really brash.
Sandra – You don’t talk about your issues but if they have an issue with you you’re gonna know it. So like they grew up, we grew up in different generations and yet that it’s a cultural thing that translated because even in my childhood in the 90s it was the same thing. I experienced exactly the same thing as my parents. I was told that I my feelings and what I thought didn’t matter or like who I was bad and and people had no problem telling me that and if I ever needed help or to talk about these things I didn’t feel like I could trust anybody because if I did it was received with retaliation even from authority figures like educators, teachers. They always had something to say back to me. No one ever had the compassion to say I’m so sorry or you know what we’re here for you so to say that my parents just never communicated because just they didn’t know how to communicate from their part it’s just a cultural thing. So they never communicated and and I feel that they just got the pressure to become parents when they didn’t want to and when you have parents who didn’t want it to be parents, now it becomes even more difficult to raise your children right.
Nicky – Well puts a lot of stress on them because raising kids is hard it’s tough and it takes so much out of you right.
Sandra – I mean so you’re a testament to that. I have no idea..
Nicky – Yeah I mean you know like you’re if you’re a career person, your career gets kind of put on hold and you know so uh you know you’re you have no sense of at least for the first couple of years you struggle with your personal time. Sometimes you don’t recognize yourself in the mirror you’re so tired and sleep deprived
Sandra – And on top of that is something you didn’t even really wanted
Nicky – Yeah
Sandra – I mean you hear a lot of horror stories about horrible people who never should have been parents. They do the most abusive behavior towards their children. It’s very blatant. So I never felt like I could say “hey I have issues” because I was never really beat up on my parents. I was never really abused, but I feel that a lot of people are nowadays accepting that neglect is a type of abuse and it’s very under the table and and even though me and my brother were raised with a roof on top of our heads with food on our tables somehow it was it felt like something was not okay and I didn’t feel like I could complain because I was I felt like a brat I’m like how dare me complain about my life when I have everything I could possibly have to become a decent person to like be able to stand up on my own two feet yet I feel like I’m crawling that was I feel like so there’s a lot of things I never thought you hear that though
Nicky – Did you feel like as you were growing up that there was something missing or you knew what what was it that you felt like you really needed growing up that you felt like you weren’t getting from your mom and dad was it a certain level of attention or what was it
Sandra – I can tell you exactly what it is knowing how to process your emotions I didn’t know I never had the tools to communicate obviously my parents didn’t either i didn’t have the tools to know what to do with sadness anger even excitement because like even as a little girl if I felt excited or nervous or insecure act like an idiot I really acted and to this day sometimes I do and say really stupid things right when I really shouldn’t. So I wish someone taught me how to behave or how to process the things that were happening. So growing up I was given education I was giving opportunities but I felt like I was crawling. I never felt like I could truly stand up on my own two feet.
Nicky – It’s hard it’s complicated
Sandra – It’s hard and complicated right like we grew up in the generation that had the participation prizes. I never had that and yet and yet…
Nicky – I didn’t go to school here so I didn’t have that either and you know like you know coming to canada it was all about like high five even though you failed.
Sandra – Right, right, but you and I grew up in cultures that you didn’t have that no and and yet and yet again I feel scared to speak about it because I feel like I sound like a brat
Nicky – No say it
Sandra – I feel like a brat, it’s like you need help but you don’t know what it is.
Nicky – Right
Sandra – Right, I do a lot
Nicky – You’re not able to really identify the issue you know but you feel like there’s an issue
Sandra – Right like you I put a lot of effort in something that I want to do because I’m highly disciplined and then I don’t get results and I don’t want to complain because I’m a millennial, I’m entitled, I didn’t probably worked as hard as i should have so like shut up and work even harder so and it wasn’t until like I started dancing that I was pushed to do things that were very uncomfortable
Nicky – Yeah
Sandra – And for the first time I was forced to face my demons. The one thing I have to say that even though my parents might have regret having children. I am so thankful that at least they loved us because not too long ago my mom said I she said I wasn’t a good mom but it took 30 years and now she’s amazing. If I have an issue she worked on herself so much that she can pass that knowledge to me and I was just telling you this a little bit back that this year I feel like I don’t recognize myself and I mean in the best way and that’s because of her
Nicky – She’s been more a mom to you now
Sandra – Then she did back when I was a girl, so better now than never
Nicky – Yeah
Sandra – Right so now I’m given the tools that I need to deal with my emotions with my feelings, with the thoughts, the stupid thoughts that comes to us that are so unnecessary and they pull us back from from being successful so um so me and my mom are very close. I I tell her that I’m so lucky to have her and she’s doing a great job I mean yeah I mean…
Nicky – She tries
Sandra – Yeah yeah
Nicky – Yeah
Sandra – Like I’m sure like when your your babies come to you it’s like mommy we love you like it’s like…
Nicky – It feels good
Sandra – It feels good right. So like I said I’m just really really glad that my mom at least tried
Nicky – Something that really kind of took me aback when when we were friends growing up was just when you told me that your dad had sort of another life. Where he he left another woman and you know other children and then he met your mom and then he started this new life with her and I don’t know how you feel about that I don’t know if you feel like a calling to kind of get to know your your brothers or sisters or is it a brother or sister
Sandra – Yes so just not to get too much into detail it was just my dad was just too young
Nicky – Yeah
Sandra – He did a mistake and he has a son so I have an older step-brother I only know his first name and that he proclaimed that he wanted to become a doctor
Nicky – Okay
Sandra – And I haven’t seen a picture of him
Nicky – You don’t know what he looks like
Sandra – I don’t know even how he looks like. I don’t know where he lives and and my mom never really wanted me to know them because she doesn’t think they’re the most classy people.
Nicky – Okay
Sandra – And quite frankly it doesn’t make a darn difference if I meet them or not. It’s really it I mean like I don’t even live in Chile like what are, there’s no point on me getting to know this person it they just mentioned him once and that’s it
Nicky – Do you know how your mum sort of reacted to your dad having that do you know what her feelings were like?
Sandra – From what I remember it was years before they even were together. I don’t know how much is something that has affected her, she never talked about it so I quite frankly I don’t know and I don’t think it matters she’s divorced she’s happy she she has her place. I’m pretty much i’ve I left the nest it’s just my brother left and she travels like I don’t think none of that matters right now
Nicky – How did your parents kind of get to that point where they decided to get a divorce and what was that like for you and Mauricio?
Sandra – So my brother so I spent a lot of time outside of the house whether I was going to school or I was working or just living my early 20s you know you go with your friends you party um but my brother was at home more and he would make comments such as I remember him saying when times like our parents are staying together for us and part of me was just refusing to believe it but deep down it was fairly obvious
Nicky – Were you happy that they did that?
Sandra – You know what I’m glad the moment my the moment my dad left the house it felt like a huge weight just lifted from the entire house. My mom was constantly upset about something the moment my dad left it it’s just clear the air it felt like you could breathe and not to say that again my dad is this abusive I mean if you compare it to your dad nowhere near but the relationship just wasn’t working and that was bringing the this toxic air you couldn’t see it you couldn’t smell it but it was making you sick and you’re like why am I why do I feel sick why am i there’s nothing here that’s clearly poisoning me. It’s you cannot solve something if you don’t know what the problem is right but the moment he left it was just a huge difference.
Nicky – Our homes were very different in that sense because like when my parents fought it was it was very loud
Sandra – and what do you mean by parents spot it was yeah
Nicky – It was just my dad yelling and yelling and yelling and my mom just I guess not doing anything and staying completely silent you know if if I guess somebody was listening in they would think that he was talking on the phone like they wouldn’t even realize that there was another person there that he was yelling at and with you it was it there was a distance that was so it wasn’t it was an active conflict like that
Sandra – Very passive
Nicky – Yeah very passive right so i’ve never seen your parents really talk at all let alone fight or argue
Sandra – Right and this is the thing like I look at you and how you’ve moved through your life have you got yourself you put yourself together to be as independent as possible and and I looked at myself, I’m like why can’t I do the same as she is and then again looking at your life in your house because I was witness to a lot of those situations
Nicky – yeah you were
Sandra – I was it’s like of course you want to live of course you want to pack up your things and leave of course you have that pressure you really have something but again because I didn’t have that blatant pressure yelling in my face. I had no pressure to leave I was smooching out of my parents for us until they finally decided to divorce. Right um so every all the steps that people take throughout their entire 20s to find that independence step by step. I had to do it in one year and like in one year I had to put my big girl pants and again because my mother was there for me I was emotionally more ready to do that. It’s just it had to happen in one year so it was tough.
Nicky – There was a lot of other things that say for example didn’t happen in my home like my parents didn’t cheat on each other but your dad you know had other affairs like you know to whatever extent we don’t know you know how far they really went but you know your dad had these other affairs and I’ve always believed that you know an affair is just sort of almost like the end of the road because foundationally you don’t have a relationship, you don’t have proper relationship values, you don’t have proper relationship foundations and then and then this affair comes along and no one that loves each other and has it has an amazing relationship then goes off and cheats on that person. It’s I feel like there there’s a lot that happens before and then that affair comes in and it’s just the last thing and do you feel the same way or how do you feel about that?
Sandra – you know what um the way cheating sometimes it feels like it’s a way of coping and in I’ve listened to a lot of professionals. I even heard that happy people in relationships cheat and I’m like and how does that work?
Nicky – I don’t believe that
Sandra – I don’t and when they try to explain themselves I still didn’t understand it so I I don’t I don’t know how much to believe that but definitely it feels like like anything else you’re you’re it’s a way of like you’re coping with something again you can’t point your finger exactly what it is otherwise if you could you would try to work it out
Nicky – But there must be something missing you know for you to for something to drive you away.
Sandra – Like I said my my parents did not want to become parents so if my dad is coming home to two children I would see why he would like to go to fantasyland someone else and try to cope in that way. If my mom was coping in any way possible was probably way healthier
Nicky – How do you think she was dealing with the affairs because there wasn’t I don’t think there was just one
Sandra – I don’t necessarily know but she was very upset. I remember my mom being very upset, I’m very strict. Whenever there was some sort of rules I’m I will always fall like I’m square I come over like these are the rules and it has to be followed and sometimes I ask myself is it my personality that was I born with that or was it because if I step out of line I was gonna get slapped on the face by my mother
NIcky – Right
Sandra – Like I have latino friends who joke like they they always talk about how if their parents got mad at them they’ll have at least 10 seconds to run away because the parent had to go grab the chancla or the spoon and I look at them I’m like that’s a cute story you had 10 seconds. hmm I don’t feel sorry for you I just got beat up right then and there on the back of my hand like I didn’t have a like moment to even breathe or flinch like so so when my classmates back in Chile would be like Sandra you’re just you’re so obedient like you need to rebel I’m like have you gotten a beating like
Nicky – Like a real beating
Sandra – Then you and you you really like like I don’t know
Nicky – Real ass whooping
Sandra – Oh my god like I I was just like again and people talk down to me. It’s like I don’t think you understand what I go through uh yeah so again um again no filter they’ll they’ll tell you straight up right like and then they make you feel bad about yourself. Right all the time and again my mom never taught me how to defend myself. Never soldier and it’s so weird
Nicky – Which is ironic because she’s such a strong woman you know and
Sandra – She did admit she had to learn how to do that
Nicky – Yeah
Sandra – She did um I think my mom was just born with this brain because she she’s the baby in her family but I think that because um she had to move she moved cities to study when she was so little. She had to go to high school to a different city I don’t know why she stayed with her cousins yeah I don’t know but because she was not babied and from an early age my mom was very quick at pointing out the nonsense that people would say in her life. Even coming from her own mother my grandma or from other people my mom was always a lone wolf like my mom was always like the oddball
Nicky – Right
Sandra – And I think that I I believe that she did struggle with that I’m pretty sure people have like she said like I’ve talked down to her have told her like like really mean things again no filter right and she had to in one way uh find the means to be confident. Like everybody else like again we all see this person we think she’s so confident she must have never felt bad about herself in her life. No, she did it’s just we don’t know that side we’ve never heard it I’m sure it’s there.
Nicky – I think it’s ironic that you know after everything is said and done there’s still that little bit of that secrecy or still that that kind of like you know where your mom and dad wouldn’t openly come and tell you what went down and how it went down and there’s still that that gap I think well do you think it’s like it’s embarrassment or shame or maybe you’re you’re just like you’ll always be the kid
Sandra – What
Nicky – So it’s none of your business
Sandra – Yeah I think it’s why why are you gonna involve your children with your drama like I think that our parents told us as much as we needed to know. I’ll be very honest I’m not interested in knowing every detail about my dad’s cheating. I really don’t care
Nicky – See I would want to know
Sandra – I just don’t i like…
Nicky – I would want to know because I i feel like a lot of times for me it helps explain a lot of the things for me you know so when they acted a certain way or they made certain decisions whether it be right or wrong that why is so important for me because a lot of times it helps identify some of the behaviors that I kind of possess
Sandra – And that’s your way of processing
Nicky – That’s my way of processing okay right and like really understanding because like say for example when when I was growing up I I found somebody that was very similar to my father in an early relationship. Right before I got married and you know you know how that was right
Sandra – Yeah I’ve seen it
Nicky – You’ve seen it
Sandra – I’ve seen it all
Nicky – You’ve seen it all yeah and that person was very much like my dad and I remember my dad would turn around and say well why are you with this guy he treats you like garbage and I didn’t really understand it because I was like well this is exactly how you treat mom right like this is what relationships are supposed to be like this is you know for thick or thin you you don’t just walk away from a relationship right and I didn’t understand the concept of boundaries I didn’t understand all of that all of that stuff I understood things that maybe I shouldn’t have understood or interpreted or filled in the blanks of a lot of things that I shouldn’t have so really understand like I understand like you can’t really talk to your child about it and I wouldn’t advise anybody to really talk to their children about cheating but then as an adult right like you know I’m I’m 33 now. So I now I I feel like I can really process if that were to if that would have were to have happened before you know i could really process you know like why why’d you do that and like obviously didn’t need to know exactly what happened but the why of of of it I would want to know again.
Sandra – I’m not a curious person
Nicky – Yeah
Sandra – I am not a curious person i’ve always I again either I was born like that genetically or I was taught by my parents to just not ask
Nicky – Ask too many questions
Sandra – Ask too many questions you I know you would be asking I remember you could ask someone a million questions why do you do this why you like it it’s like that’s your way of interacting with people but I I don’t feel the need to have to know everything. My dad and I are not really that close I love him we do see each other on special locations and we enjoy each other’s company very much but on a regular basis we don’t talk. We really don’t talk.
Nicky – Is that what you want?
Sandra – It’s not effect again it’s just I…
Nicky – Is that what you imagined? Do you wish it to be any different
Sandra – It’s so weird because i know there’s a lot of of people out there who wish to have that father figure in their lives I sincerely don’t care. Somehow I don’t feel like I’m missing that father figure. I don’t feel that craving I don’t know why. I don’t know why. I should maybe but I’m not like trying to replace my dad with someone in my life or trying to like get him to talk to me. I don’t know
Nicky – I think I don’t know based on what I’ve observed and you can tell me if I’m like right or wrong but when I used to come over to your house your your dad had this video game addiction. right and when I would come into your home he would be there on his table in the living room
Sandra – In a corner
Nicky – In a corner playing his video game with the headphones and he I would never see him sit up or like stand up
Sandra – Unless it was to go to the kitchen to get something
Nicky – Water and then he was back
Sandra – Yeah
Nicky – And you know and then eventually I saw your brother doing the same thing and I remember it was it was um it was a few years ago where you know your brother and I were having a chat and he said that the reason why he became an addict right was because that was the only way he could really connect with your dad and so I don’t know if like you know my thing is like when I hear you say that where you say like oh you know I don’t really yearn for a father figure. I feel I wonder if it’s because you’ve never ever had one and you don’t know what it’s like to have a dad because your dad was always kind of checked out somewhere
Sandra – That’s the thing like I did have a dad but I didn’t have a dad and and when you told me that that my brother said that to you and he’s never said that to me I I felt like I felt so hurt because like I’m not affected but clearly my brother was and me and my brother are close enough that if someone is hurting him I I feel pain like
Nicky – Yeah you guys are close in age too
Sandra – Yeah exactly and my and then I love my brother and to see him not being able to to struggle even more than I it breaks my heart because he’s so he’s so smart. He’s always been smarter than me like I’m the hard worker he’s just smart and all that gone to the garbage like he’s just picking himself up and that’s what hurts me. It doesn’t hurt me that my my father wasn’t in my life it hurts me that he wasn’t in my brother’s life. That’s what that’s when I’m like that’s what I’m not okay with it and recently I saw I heard a podcast with Jordan Peterson and this other professional I can’t remember his name but he wrote the book the Boy Crisis and they were talking about the effects of uh absent parents in kids life because when you’re a parent you need to do rough play with the kids because you get to teach them how when they go too far and then when they go play with other kids their age they know how to not cross that boundary
Nicky – Right
Sandra – And then other kids don’t get hurt. Therefore now they can socialize properly and now the kid can have friends, they can communicate properly, they can have fun and no one gets hurt
Nicky – I didn’t know this
Sandra – No no take note because because everything they said all the repercussions that comes with not having a father being present in a kid’s life comes through. You start to become addict you you struggle to succeed in life to pull yourself together. Right um you struggle socially right and and every single pointer me and my brother have suffered from and to one extent to the other both of us have been bullied. We just we were always never fitting in we both have some sort of addiction. We both are struggling to be independent pull ourselves together and being successful and when I first time I I I heard that I I started bawling I’m like oh my god like and I feel like that’s what hurts me. The most the fact that my dad wasn’t there for us but for some reason I’m still not trying to replace him like it’s not like I’m trying to find a father figure. I I don’t know but but but that’s what happens when uh kids don’t grow up with
Nicky – I really I really connect with what he said because like say for example you know like we have parties and I love to cook right
Sandra – Yes
Nicky – and you know I the reason I actually started cooking was because my dad loved to eat and that was the only area where he complimented me where you know everything else was was really crappy you know he’d never have anything good to say but that was the only area where even if I didn’t make a dish that was all that great he was super happy and you know he was really grateful that that I made something for him and that I cook for him and you know so I feel like um having that having that uh reassurance you know when you’re younger that that’s so powerful especially if that’s what’s that’s what you’re looking for and I think that’s what your brother was looking for is something where you got to connect right there was something where your dad went you know like where he gave him that positive reinforcement right and this time it was over a game right.
Sandra – And and again because my dad never really paid attention to him instead of turning into because I don’t see anything wrong with a father and a son playing video games together as a way of connecting but because my dad never connected, it turned into something negative and just instead of something positive it turned into something negative
Nicky – It was like two addicts really yeah right
Sandra – Yeah like it’s like it’s like bringing like um I go into an addiction like like group like sometimes it can backfire because uh you have that…
Nicky – You feel each other
Sandra – You have a person next to you who’s not doing so great and slips you a little bit of that drug you’re trying to stay away from like that’s it’s just it’s just how it turned out but but when you said that I was like my brother has never expressed that to me and it really hurt me
Nicky – Yeah
Sandra – It really really hurt me and I and again it’s it’s just like going back to the very beginning of this conversation I felt very uncomfortable to say I’m not okay because again I feel like I’m just being a brat. I look at my life it’s like what why do I have to complain and it’s so sad because there’s so many very amazing wonderful fathers out there who unfortunately pass away too early and then there’s horrible parents and they’re still alive that is so unfair it’s so unfair like how does this happen but it’s just I guess say la vie. I don’t know like but um it’s just very unfortunate.
Nicky – How is it like you know girl because you guys you guys were an immigrant family so you came to canada when you know you were 12
Sandra – 14
Nicky – 14 okay um and when you came to canada obviously you didn’t have a lot of money and then you had these addiction issues and they weren’t really covered by the government right
Sandra – No
Nicky – So you have to pay a lot for for therapy and for going to rehab and all of that and so how is that how is that pressure you know like on your family
Sandra – When we first came to canada
Nicky – Yeah when you like essentially what I’m trying to say is like you guys weren’t made of money right
Sandra – well everything…
Nicky – And like you know having these addictions and having these issues that you needed support dealing with. There wasn’t exactly like regular support, government support to to help you know with counseling and all of that
Sandra – Well you know we come to canada we are in survival mode right we’re we’re just in survival mode like it’s again I have all these insecurities from back in Chile and I’m coming into a brand new country right into grade nine and I’m surrounded with people who at least some of them know each other from elementary school. I know absolutely nobody at least I knew some english
Nicky – Yeah
Sandra – Thank the lord um and and and that’s the time when me and my brother were so close like that’s the the time that because you know siblings you probably don’t know but you don’t know but
Nicky – You stuck together you know
Sandra – But that’s the thing me and my brother like any other siblings we bickered like we fight we have our rivalries but when we came to canada all of a sudden we’re trying to learn how to skateboard or we’re going to the park together or we’re literally reading harry potter together or like at some point we we slept in the same like twin bed
Nicky – Yeah
Sandra – It would be like like saturday night we’re staying up late talking and chatting and and we fall asleep like and it sounds weird like we were acting like we were five but like that was us bonding you know that’s that’s and then obviously now we’re we’re getting more accustomed to Canada. Living here now this is our life this is your school this is your neighborhood this is your new language these are your new friends um we’re getting work and and now now the issues are bubbling.
Nicky – Yeah
Sandra – Now all of a sudden my brother and I are fighting again because now he’s having issues right
Nicky – Right
Sandra – and I am just literally not escaping home but like I was just trying to because I’m an older child I’m automatically the responsible one so I was just trying to
Nicky – But you were the good kid right
Sandra – I was the older one
Nicky – You were you were the good kid you didn’t have um you didn’t have any I would say uh visible issues but your brother was more rebellious
Sandra – Well again like it’s it’s there’s there’s some there’s a lot of books explaining this the older kid is always a responsible one and the younger kid gets to be a little bit wilder. Right so so that dynamic also existed at home so I was always trying to be responsible so now now me and my brother are reaching our young adulthood my parents are getting fed up with each other it’s just it’s starting to get messier and messier and messier because me and my brother now really need to leave the nest and talking about the support now that we have been accustomed to Canada, we’re citizens now we did get support from CAMH because again my brother was the one having more visible issues.
Nicky – Right
Sandra – So we send them to camage that one is supported by the government and that’s when we started to do uh the the family therapy because it’s not just about my brother because he doesn’t exist in a vacuum he needed the support from the rest of the family
Nicky – Right right
Sandra – And it’s so sweet because even even when we will all have to go from our respective lives and congregate into downtown toronto spadina and I think Bloor we have the college
Nicky – Yeah
Sandra – We had to congregate into this building and to this appointment to help each other even then I would be like hey Mauricio want to meet up for Tim’s before like it’s just like those are the things that I really look for and those are the times that I started for the first time hearing about my parents having issues. In in chile growing up and they never they never spoke to anyone
Nicky – So you never saw anything when you were in Chile you never noticed anything as a child
Sandra – From my parents aside from the fighting no. My parents don’t talk about their problems. Like you said we just don’t talk and I feel like I wanna uh I wanna blame culture and and I will go ahead and say that I’m a victim. I’m a victim of the people who raised me I’m gonna say I’m a victim of a culture that I was brought up in, I’m a victim of all the abuse that I went through but we become adults and it’s like well what are you gonna do about it. Now it’s your unfortunately you have to parent yourself and it’s your responsibility right I have a lot of people saying to me you are your problem and you’re your solution and sometimes it’s very condescending because yeah people do things to us I’ve I remember someone saying to me it’s like oh but you allow people to abuse you you allow people to say these things to you you did not defend yourself it’s it’s it’s you who who who who made this happen and I’m like that is so unfair. How dare you tell a five to seven year old that they did this to themselves it’s so condescending and and so yeah I’m gonna, I’m a victim, I’m a victim of all that abuse that went under the table but I’m an adult and I can and I can say no more and again thanks to my mom’s love, she gave me the tools and like again this is a year where I don’t recognize myself. I like it.
Nicky – Well you went to therapy and
Sandra – Yes
Nicky – You know you kind of really tightened that relationship with your mom and I think like after your when your mom and your dad were going through their divorce like your mom needed to sell the house and she needed to kind of have some space and live her life so she went off really traveling because that was her way of I think coping with everything that was going on because you know she wasn’t able to do what she really wanted to do for so long
Sandra – And and that’s the thing because when before my parents put the house uh they listed the house she she individually went to my brother and me individually to talk about it and without me and my brother speaking to each other we both told her the same answer we said sell the house mom it’s your time to to live your life. We release you we release you from from from whatever’s that you’re going through right and when we sold the house um it was like the couple of days before we had to leave for the closing and all of us were like fighting for the furniture yes I kid you not but because at the time I was dating this guy like I was gonna stay at his place for a couple of months with his family before I could move into my my new place
Nicky – Melvin
Sandra – Melvin, yes, and so like we were all riffing each other like furniture I’m like I want the kitchen table no Maurice already took I’m like dang it right like yeah like we were fighting for whatever was left in the house and it’s so funny because we were all living in the same place and all of a sudden poof. My brother took off to this I live with his friends in Mississauga I took off to live with my my boyfriend at a time my mom took off traveling my dad took off to like to China to to marry his new wife. Like we just like literally split and in that moment of us splitting somehow we came together because now we we can see each other on special occasions they come to my place with my husband um for Christmas, Thanksgivings uh birthdays and
Nicky – Does your dad bring his new wife is that weird for your mom?
Sandra – No
Nicky – is that
Sandra – I mean I don’t know exactly how she feels but obviously she’s like every time she tells me something she’ll be like don’t tell your dad don’t tell you that and I’m like mom I don’t talk to him like nothing you say will ever pass into his ears because like it’s I don’t talk to him
Nicky – Yeah
Sandra – But I know she wants to keep a lot of secrecy I mean it’s her ex like
Nicky – Right
Sandra – Like I like
Nicky – She’s starting a new life she wants to have some boundaries
Sandra – Yeah
Nicky – Yeah
Sandra – Especially after divorce but they’re but they act very civil with each other at least I’m really really glad about that and we can all six of us get together in the same room um and she doesn’t make it weird I don’t feel a shred of weirdness in the room we’re all having a good time and I’m very thankful for that
Nicky – Do you think your dad’s happy now you know that he’s living his life I mean your mom doesn’t have a boyfriend or anything but do you think your dad’s happier in his new relationship?
Sandra – I think I don’t know about that but I don’t think my whatever issues my dad has I don’t think he’s he’s attending to them because when we again when when we were about to sell a house and split, I told my mom you both have a lot of issues but I only see you working to to get better I don’t see my dad trying to get better. Again that’s harsh because again we don’t have a close relationship so he could be working on himself I just don’t see it and I’m only hearing my mom’s side
Nicky – Is it because he feels like he doesn’t have issues and he has nothing to work on or he recognizes his issues but he just doesn’t realize you know what it is?
Sandra – Anything I’m gonna say about my dad right now is just an opinion
Nicky – It’s an assumption really
Sandra – It’s an assumption that like again my parents don’t talk too much about me um I don’t know what’s going on his head I really I really don’t know but I don’t think he’s really working on it for whatever reason I to this day even though he could be happily married I don’t think he’s really working on any issues
Nicky – Are you happy that that your parents got divorced when you were an adult? Would you have preferred that your parents sort of live their own lives because you know that they were so unhappy and your mom was miserable and do you feel like things happened in the way that they should or like because I I feel like for myself like uh you know my parents should have gotten divorced a long time ago and regardless of whether I was young or not and having them be together ended up being damaging for them and then damaging for me. Do you kind of share that opinion or how do you feel about that?
Sandra – The only reason why I’m glad that they got divorced after I turned 18 and my brother is because um you start to get into legals
Nicky – Yeah
Sandra – Like who you’re gonna live with right are you gonna move from house to house it gets expensive for everybody um I wouldn’t wish this upon anybody to have to suck it up for the children it sucks but like but I’m glad they did because then at least we got it to avoid that that headache and as an adult at least I’ve seen enough to be like again like my brother said my parents are sticking it out for us. At first I reacted like no no like it can’t be that our parents hate each other but deep down I knew that it it was gonna happen like he was right. um the first time i’ve ever heard my parents saying that they regretted having us was when I was 30 was like this was like months before I got married and I just couldn’t help but laugh it’s like that’s 30 years too late like I at this point i don’t care like if I was three or thirteen that would have affected me so bad because then now all of a sudden I would feel guilty to ask anything out of them because they didn’t want me because then San like like young Sandra would have been like start talking herself like in such a mean way. You’re not wanted, you’re not loved, how dare you ask for anything you shouldn’t have been here. I already was already telling me I’d like the world would be so much better if I was in here already. I didn’t need to hear that on top of everything right so I’m glad I’m glad I heard it 30 years after because now it’s like I’m living my life I’m with my husband. I have a job like I’m dancing, I can paint I have friends, like it it just doesn’t I didn’t flinch. I just didn’t flinch.
Nicky – So what would you tell your younger self you know now having been through the situation how would you what kind of coping strategies or you know what would you what would you tell your your younger self you know if you had to go back in time
Sandra – Uh it’s not your fault everybody sucks um like I said um
Nicky – Well sometimes like the system can really be broken and
Sandra – Right like i said culturally and the people that raised me it’s it’s it’s it’s I’m a victim plain and simple and um even even small children will blame themselves um if their parents are not happy. Right so if I were to go back in time and I had seven-year-old Sandra next to me I’ll be like it’s not your fault. People are just not doing their job right they’re not doing their job and um and honestly all I ever wanted was someone to just every time that I was feeling bad just take me for ice cream and tell me that they loved me. That’s all I needed to hear that’s all I needed to know.
Nicky – Did you feel like you were always looking for that for that love assurance uh when you were growing up and
Sandra – Of course yeah
Nicky – Acceptance
Sandra – Um trying trying to have friends only for them to turn around and tell me Sandra we actually talked behind your back and we think you’re stubborn and stupid and ugly and fat like and all I wanted was someone to tell me we love you, we care about you, it’s not your fault people have failed you. Shame on them like shame on them again I’m an adult so I had to pull myself out of it just just it’s just life yeah someone comes and out of nowhere attacks you cuts your hand unfortunately you’re gonna have to live with the rest of your life without a hand. You can still live a fulfilling life but some things about you are gonna have to accommodate if you’re if someone chopped your right hand you’re gonna have to learn how to write with your left can you still ride type live your life have friends go out yeah it’s just you’re gonna have to readjust small things. So I would tell my younger self it’s not your fault.
Nicky – Do you feel like you know the like it was the people that uh didn’t work out for you or was it the process that didn’t work out for you or or a little bit of both? Like you know where it was like your parents were just wrong for each other and then they raised you guys wrong you know did you feel like that was really it?
Sandra – Yeah absolutely I don’t think my parents were right for each other they admitted they were pressured and now they’re left with two children to fend for. Luckily they were brought with enough education and class to do their job because again I I don’t know why I’ve been watching a lot of Dr. Phil and you have to see the most horrible parents out there who don’t even care to do the minimal level of taking care of their children like feeding them, clothing them, make sure they’re okay, they’re healthy, not even that so I was very lucky that my parents had enough education in class to at least provide that much. At the very least so.
Nicky – Well thank you so much for coming on the show it was it’s always so great to talk to you about this I know like a lot of it I’ve really seen but you know and I know that you’re really passionate about raising awareness. Right?
Sandra – Thank you so much for having me like you said this is definitely going to be a great way of just let people know that it’s it’s okay to have everything and still feel like you’re failing because there’s something that needs to be worked on it’s just very under the table. We’re gonna flip that table and fix it
Nicky – Well thank you so much for joining us and I hope you like, subscribe, and hit that notification bell for more videos to come. We’ll see you soon. Bye.