OPRAH WINFREY‘s  ailing mother ravaged after her famous daughter humiliated her in front of a TV audience of millions, say insiders.

Not only did the talk-show diva confess to Barbara Walters that she wasn’t close to mom Vernita Lee – she went on to gush about best pal Gayle King, referring to her as "the mother I never had."

"Vernita is devastated," divulged a close family friend.
"It was the final straw after years of insults and betrayals. She just doesn’t understand why Oprah still has to be so cruel to her."

Vernita, 75,  was said to have been "so proud" when she sat down to watch the Walters interview at her Milwaukee condo.

"But her joy turned to tears and embarrassment as Oprah described her friendship with Gayle," maintained the friend. "Vernita knows she wasn’t the perfect mother, but she loves Oprah, and she is hurt by the way her daughter put her down in public.

"Vernita says Oprah keeps bringing up the fact that she was the result of a one-night stand, that Vernita didn’t protect Oprah from abuse or help her when she was raped when she was 9 years old .

"She wishes Oprah would forgive her after all these years."

Vernita, who suffers from high blood pressure, diabetes, blurred vision and kidney problems,  tried to build a stronger relationship with Oprah over the years, but her efforts have been hampered by the fact that she doesn’t even have her daughter’s private phone number!

Get ALL the sad details ONLY in the new ENQUIRER!