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Bad Childhood

Email of the Day: I Could Have Had a Troubled Life

By Dr. Laura on April 18, 2023
Woman wearing red sweater faces a wall with two arrows in opposite directions as she stands next to a baby stroller

I am the daughter of a teenage single mom. My father and mother were never really together after I was born, and my mom remarried twice. The last marriage β€œtook,” because she found a man who loved her, loved my brother and me, and took care of us. 20 years later, he’s the best father and grandfather. We were the lucky ones.



My mom had a past of childhood abuse and trauma, but spent her life doing what she thought was in our best interest, proving that your own trauma doesn’t have to define how you live the rest of your life. I found sanctuary and stability with her after weekends of chaos and stepping on eggshells when I was with my dad. Mom had rules! I thought she was mean and strict, but she made sure we didn’t make her mistakes, and she protected us from any ramifications of her past. She started listening to you when I was in middle school, and always said you would have a β€œheyday” with all of her past mistakes and choices!

I’m now 28. I got married, bought a house, then had a baby (in the correct order!), and I’m proud of myself. When we had a baby, my husband and I made some sacrifices so I could be home to raise and love our daughter.

Thank you for helping teach me and my mom what it means to β€œchoose wisely” and stick to your morals, even when others don’t. I eventually stopped contact with my dad, because it caused more pain to have a relationship with him than it was worth, and you gave me the strength to do that. I also know that I’m protecting my daughter from a relationship more likely to do harm than good. She will know only the love of the grandparents who are head over heels in love with her. 



I Could Have Had a Troubled Life


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