Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Last of the Family Stuff

Thank you all for weighing in on the family stuff.  I have decided to not go to the wedding.

But I do want to say this..
  1. I have been in therapy for several years (and off and on for the past 20+ years).  This is the first time I have really been working on my family dynamic.
  2. Several of you stated to grow a backbone and stand up for myself.  That is the problem.  I always have.  That is the major source of conflict.  I stand up for myself, and am punished for it.  My parents can't "ground" me like they did when I was young, but they take it out in other ways.
  3. I don't know if you guys can appreciate what it was like as a child being responsible for your parents' and their needs.  I had parents who put their needs first, and could care less about me.  I grew up being expected to cater to them....take care of them....lavish them with gift.  When you are child, you don't know any better.  Then you find out that isn't the way the rest of the world operates.  And it isn't as simple as just "stopping."
  4. No, I don't enjoy this.  Nor did I enjoy when my mother wore black to my wedding, or when I had my children and my parents didn't visit me first.  Or when my babies died and I was told that I was selfish for grieving because didn't I see how this was impacting THEM.  Or when I was hit as a child for disagreeing with them.  Or when I graduated from HS, College, and Master's degree...and all my parents could say was how it inconvenienced them.  Or the zillion other things that I could share.  
  5. We moved "away" 13 years to get away from the daily drama (expecting me to drop everything to cater to them).  Now I just get it in big doses vs the daily stuff.
  6. The reason I keep trying is because of my kids.  It makes me sad that they have grandparents and uncles (on both sides) that largely ignore them.  Someday my kids will figure out that most people don't have that happen...and when they ask me why it is the way it is....I want to be able to say that it has NOTHING to do with them, and that I tried.
  7. I am not going to discuss my family anymore.  Not because I disagree with what you are saying, but because there is so much more to these stories than I can share (without writing a novel).  It is obvious based on some of the questions that I am not explaining things fully, and this isn't about trying to figure out my family. 


  1. Just know that there are people out there (like me) that have the same situation. We very easily could have grown up in the same household, except that I didn't stand up for myself until I was 38. Yes, I consider that I didn't start living until I was 38. It has been 5 years since I wrote my entire family off. I have 4 beautiful children that would love to have extended family, but I have chosen to teach them that sometimes we get to choose who is our family and that blood isn't always best. They need to know that the blood family is not normal behavior. Hugs to you!

  2. I think many of us grew up in a childhood without lollipops & unicorns. Rest assured, you are NOT the only one that had a crappy childhood. Some of us have just moved on and decided to NOT let it rule our lives and ruin what we have now.

    It's your life. It's up to you how you will let others affect you and your family. Period.

    I wish you the best of luck in dealing with your demons and moving on, until you find inner peace, you won't be truly happy and confident in who you are.

  3. I stand with you on #2... I am the black sheep of the family because I stood up and wouldn't say the moon was red and made of cheese just because my mother said so. She can't ground me, but yeah. Staying at home pouting has given her infinite time to come up with other punishing ways. Also on #3, #4 #5... since my elder brother married, I am the next in line to care for them, and I'd rather move 800mi away than get put through that.

    Regardless, strength to you! You're doing rather well under such significant pressure, and I'm at that point where I just don't talk about my family anymore because it just becomes a whine fest and leaves me more miserable than when I started. But just know we're here to listen to you, and though we don't always agree with one another (which is perfectly human), we'll listen and understand, and hopefully provide some useful advice. Take care!

  4. As others have said - many of us know exactly where you are coming from. One thing to consider - why you are doing this for your kids. Your family isn't going to change - so why continue exposing your kids to them? What is the up side? Not expecting answer here but please think about.

  5. My husband decided early on that our children would not be exposed to his mothers drama. Sometimes she will send them a gift and other times ignore them. They get that it is her choice to be that way.

    I did have a wonderful childhood(spankings and all) but realize that not everyone had that. I think it is best to just move on. Like Carla said, some people choose to move on and not let the past destroy the here and now.

  6. I agree with SAK and Theresa. What benefit are your kids getting from being around the kind of behavior your parents display? I cut my biological father out of my life, because of his binge drinking, when I had my kids - I didn't want them exposed to what I had to deal with off and on growing up. My DH had to do the same with some of his family members. Sometimes you just have to move on so that you can create a healthy environment for your own family. Carla is 100% correct: It's your life. It's up to you how you will let others affect you and your family. Period.

    I hope you can find the answers and peace you are looking for with your family situation.

  7. I love you, but please stop trying for the kids. They need to be protected from that toxic behavior. Their demand to have family cater to them will transfer to your children unless you stop it.

    Your parents will be who they are no matter what. It is time to cut those strings and move forward with your beautiful family.

  8. Parents have a way of digging deep and cutting straight to the bone in our dealings with them. Its easy to say "move on" and "let it go" --- but its hard because at the heart of it most of us want that unconditional love and acceptance that is SUPPOSED to come from our parents. I do agree with other commenters though that their behavior might not be the best for Sassy and Bossy to be exposed to. At this point you've tried a very long time..... neither you nor your children can say you haven't given it a good effort.

    Good luck in dealing with it all.

  9. I've so enjoyed getting to know you through your blog. You are a strong person and a great mom, but even the strongest would be bowed down by what you've had to deal with lately -- your toxic work environment and now family issues. Please take care of yourself, and may you soon get though all of this.

  10. Mysti you will never figure them out so let it go. Don't send a card to the wedding or the bat mit. Just let it go, give yourself the gift of not caring anymore.

    Believe me my children have known since they were little that their dads family didn't give a hoot about them and never had. None of them are ever going to change so give them the gift of forgiveness in YOUR heart and then let them go. Believe me you will feel better, live better and love better.

    If them spend the whole wedding talking about how your not there then it wasn't a very good wedding to begin with. Just let it go and concentrate on your family

  11. Sweetie, you are under way too much stress lately. But listen to what people are saying here. You want to make it that we don't understand you. But that's not it at all. Family fucks you up. That's how it is for everyone.
    One thing that I want to point out is this-- you cannot force a relationship. You can't force any relationship at all but you definitely cannot force a relationship between people that are not you.
    What does that mean? You need to let your children forge their relationships with their extended family. Will they lose their uncles and grandparents? Maybe. Will it adversely affect them? Most likely not.
    Look at you. Look at all the freaking suffering you are going because you have been forced to deal with these people for so freaking long.
    There are other people, good loving wholesome people, that will happily stand in as grandparents for your children. Let the ones that are painful go and you'll see what I mean.
    It is what is happening with my kids and their father. I cannot force a relationship between them. They spend time with him frequently but that isn't enough to build a healthy relationship on. Will it hurt them if they can't? Maybe. And maybe not. SO many members of my family have stepped in and taken up different fatherly roles, it's amazing and my kids are SO much better off.
    Let it go. Let it all truly just go. Cry about it and be angry about it and then just drop it all. Oh yes they'll probably go buck wild on you. But they might have a change of heart. And they might not and they might just move on forever. And so will you. And so will your kids.

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