My brother had not spoken with my parents for few years, despite living with them all these while. I suspect my brother and I have selective mutism. Selective mutism is the anxiety disorder that makes you unable to speak at certain settings.
Growing up, the most frequent trait I am associated with is quiet. I am told by my aunt and uncle that I have a golden teeth in my mouth, that if I speak, my golden teeth will fall off, meaning that I am guarding my words for some bizarre reason. My teachers and peers would say I am too quiet, the feedback my parents get from teachers will be that.
I think this started since I was young. I was quiet at church fellowships. Before each church meeting, I will feel very anxious, cold hands and feet, and feel relieved or dejected (later in life) after coming home. I was able to talk to few friends at school, and comfortably at home, however, that changes too, I became more distant in family.
Everyone feels shy at new situation, however there are some who are shyer, this is due to genes. These people have more anxiety. My parents may have these anxieties themselves and they do not know it. I don’t know what is their history or how healthy is their communications, because I don’t really communicate with them, and not know what is going on. There is this need to keep adult problems from children, which I think is unhealthy, as the children can sense what is wrong.
A child with selective mutism suffers in silence and may not get their emotional needs met. They may have emotional outburts or tantrums because of this. I am not sure how much of my mental health now is shaped by these unmet emotional needs, I am not sure what I am missing out on from normal family who communicates normally. I feel that my brother and I are in constant psychological distress and unable to voice out. The fact that things are always like this in the family makes voicing out difficult because this is treated as normal.
I think my aunt and relatives sensed what is wrong with my brother and I and tried to help. My mother is quite helpless in such parenting issues as she comes from a lower economic status family and suddenly thrust into making decisions for child’s education, extended family politics, etc. My parents are shy themselves, and I think my aunt don’t want me to be like my dad, and learn all the bad stuffs such as stubbornness and evading responsibilities.
I hate my parents for it, because they have such bad characteristics, and probably have problems dealing with life themselves because of their own personalities and anxieties and decide to bring life into this world. Why prolong the suffering, these characteristics and sufferings will pass down to the next generation as your children have your genetics and probably you will be raising them, they will follow your behavior and responses to situations.