We were on the edge of the cliff for quite some time.
I’ve fallen over many times, but I managed to grab hold of the cliff face and eventually pull myself up to you again, often without your aid.
Yet you continued to push me off the cliff repeatedly, and then ironically, cheered me on to climb back up without so much as lending me a hand.
Now, I’ve finally seen through you. It was just a show. I doubt you really cared, or even if you did, you failed to show it.
Your support came only as Tolerance, but even so, your disappointment seeped through those walls of tolerance to smite me.
You cried foul, saying that I disappointed you, that I abandoned everything, that all your efforts had gone to waste.
But not even once did you try to understand my point of view, despite the fact that I’ve tried my best to explain…. for years.
I’ve been in survival mode all this while. I’ve suffered depression, anxiety, panic disorders and even imposter syndrome. I’ve been on medication.
Your reactions make me wonder if I’m just your investment
But none of that concerns you as long as I put up a smiling face in front of you and continue my work as a doctor. You seemed to have shown less concern over my mental health compared to the concern you showed over my decision to quit the medical field.
This reaction led me to start questioning if you’ve ever cared for my well being. Or am I just an investment? A pet you raised to amuse you and your petty friends?
You said you were “disappointed, yet would accept my decision to leave this career.” But your reaction after my quitting showed otherwise.
I came home happier, more joyful, and I couldn’t be prouder to finally get off my meds. But your little comments, your sinister smirk, your negative demeanour grew louder and larger and darker.
You would say things like “When are you gonna get a job?” within 1 week of my leave, when I’d clearly stated I needed a rest and would take things slowly.
You continued to pester me with the achievement of your friends’ kids, then to drive the wound even deeper, you questioned mine.
You judged me on every penny I spent since I’ve been out of salary and spending on my savings.
You’ve been petty with my decisions and my choices in job applications.
But now you’ve taken it a step further. Now you’ve shown your true colours. Now you’ve finally said what you meant…
You told me: “It is your attitude issue that you quit.”
Despite 2 years of me sharing with you how I’ve been burned out, bullied, and driven by fear in that toxic workplace, you thought all this toxicity that befell on me was somehow due to my attitude, my weakness.
Those words kept running in circles in my mind for the past couple of days. It made me introspect and analyse my problems, and I’ve come to the conclusion: It is not true.
I’m not responsible for the bad things people did to me.
I’m never going to blame myself for leaving a toxic workplace.
And it isn’t my fault for being jobless when I want to prioritise my mental health.
You speak of your own disappointment. I acknowledge it, and I’m sorry I could not fill in those big shoes you’ve prepared.
I’ve beaten myself up enough on my choice for 2 years. I’m suffering from uncertainty about the future when making this decision to quit my job. But somehow this is all about you and your disappointments. What about my disappointments?
I’m your son, yet you’ve failed to understand my stance.
You’ve used your own emotions to beat me up. You speak of tolerance, but only hypocritically. You’ve never once shown acceptance towards me.
And despite everything, despite the mental breakdowns I’ve had, the experiences that almost led me to kill myself…. You want me back in that hell hole I’ve managed to crawl out from.
What about my disappointment… Mom.
I’ve never blamed you for the bullying that happened when I was in primary school. Of which you only listened and never acted. But I guess I do now.
You’ve given me a bed, food, and education. But you’ve never given me a home. Your motive made me question if I’m just an investment to you. If I’m just a pet you groom for years just so you can show your friends and compare me to their “pets” as well.
But sis and dad would still take your side nevertheless. I guess to you, I’ll never be seen as more than just the son who quit medicine after 7 years of study and training and RM350,000 of failed investment.
Nothing I say or do would make you see any of this any more. If it makes you feel better, let me be the unfilial son who could not meet your expectations.
Son, signing out.
This story was sent in by an anonymous contributor. Have a story to share? Submit it to [email protected]
For more stories like this, read The Doctor Will See You Now: 5 Reasons Why Doctors In Malaysia Are Overworked.
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