Tw: Family Violence, Helpless Mother
hi, i am a 19F waiting for university to start this year. my parents have been married for 31 years, giving birth to three daughters (incld me).
post-marriage, my father began to reveal his anger management issues. he would throw furniture around the house, scream at his wife and children. just this sunday, my father got upset over an insignificant issue, throwing the broom at my mother, telling her to “go die, jump down the building, 他妈的, you are useless, etc.” this has been going on for years, and honestly after speaking to my two sisters, the three of us agreed that all we could remember from our childhood was running away from our father to the toilet, where he would bang on the door, scream and threaten us.
to make things clear, my father has never physically hurt the three of us despite constantly threatening to. he only dares to physically hurt my mother. about 2 years ago, he throw a chair at her, causing her a leg injury (went to seek tcm help but did not collect evidence). when i was young, the frequency of such violent outbreaks was once every week, but it has reduced to once every 3 months now.
my father was the sole breadwinner of my family for years. as a family of 5, we led a really simple life (no luxuries). my father and mother are diploma holder and o-level holder respectively. my mom dedicated her youth to being a housewife (cooking for us, fetching us to and fro school etc.) now that my younger sister has entered sec sch, my mom went for a part-time job nearby but still carries out the duties of a housewife. for years, my mom pleaded for my dad to agree to employ a helper so that she could earn income herself, but he would get angry and say that he did not trust a helper. in all, not working for years meant that my mom does not have savings to seek help and is no where near being financially independent.
because of our finances and financial background, my siblings and i studied hard at school. my older sister obtained a govt scholarship post-As and completed her undergrad and masters overseas (not taking a single cent from my father). i am also looking to hopefully attain a bond-free scholarship to university (hopefully if the gods look favourably on me). i chose to apply to law school locally because i realised my helplessness and my desire to help others in similar circumstances as myself. i also applied for financial aid to the universities, but i only qualify for the lowest tier of finA bc my gross hh income is around 10k, w the inclusion of my older sister’s fresh grad govt pay. this makes our pci ard 2k which messes up things for me so badly. note: my sister does not contribute to hh expenses at all, hence her pay will not help sponsor my uni fees.
truthfully, the three of us are at a loss at what to do. our relatives, despite knowing of my father’s violent tendencies, are helpless. one year ago, after a violent fit was thrown, my aunt and her husband tried to mediate the situation by having my family gather for an open conversation. my sisters and i were open about how scarred we were from the violence, and my mom revealed that she had wanted to divorce him many years ago but pulled it together till today for the sake of the three children. it ended with my dad throwing a chair at my mom in front of my 2 aunts, 1 uncle and my father’s mother (grandmother). the “counselling/mediation” failed tragically.
yes, i have searched online many times for what we can do to help my mother (and ourselves). however, my mom is averse to seeking help bc of 2 main reasons. (1) we rely on my dad for finances. if my dad were to be jailed or they are separated/divorce, my mom’s part-time pay is unable to cover my uni fees/younger sister’s sch fees + our hh expenses. my mom does not have money to seek legal aid as well. (2) my mom comes from a traditional family, she had a mindset that the woman should stick with her husband and raise her child up regardless of what happens. truthfully, no one can help her except herself, if she continues to keep mum about this from the police.
i remember as a kid when my older sister and i could not take it anymore and dialed 999, someone spoke at the end of the line but we were too terrified of the consequences to say anything, and ended up hanging up.
the 3 of us sisters spoke on sunday night after the violent fit was thrown again. my older sis said “we grew up in the worst family and there is nothing we can do to help mama”. the cycle will just keep repeating itself. i am worried that one day, while i am away in uni and my older sister is not at home, my father will do worse things to my mom (what if he takes a knife and kills her or pushes her down) he is a monster whenever he gets upset…. he acts as if nothing happens after every violent fit and treats us nicely as if to get his forgiveness. i am thankful for my dad as he has provided for the 4 of us since young including tuition, sch feed, food. i have never had to worry abt finances. but his violent tendencies are unacceptable.
fellow sgreans, what can i (and my sisters) do to help my mother?