I'm sorry, I didn't mean to come off harsh. I just went through being angry and bitter and resentful towards my dad for many years and because we were not really emotionally connected even though I tried, I realized I would never have my expectations met from him. I know it took me a long time to heal and I'm sorry if I hurt your feelings. That was not my intent. I know loving a family that has hurt you is difficult to distance from them but I just thought since everytime you are around them, you react with anger, I think that is just not good for you. I hope you will find a therapist or a good friend that you can sound off to and get some positive help. I struggled with many issues in my 30's and I look back and had to make hard choices to make me more healthier emotionally and mentally and was able to stand up for myself to my dad in love. I shared a lot in letters and sometimes if you write things down but don't give them to anyone, it helps you find healing too. Again, please forgive me for hurting your feelings and coming off harsh. It was not my intention.
Thank you Renko! I'm sorry if I seemed harsh myself. I am having a really difficult time with this. I wish I could just click my heals and be beyond it all. It's really hard to admit/accept that things aren't as they should be. I still fall into expecting (hoping) my brother meets my expectations and pulls through. Yet I'm repeatedly let down. Trying to accept that this is how things are and how he is is very difficult. But then to attempt to change my behavior along with it, is harder. I'm 34 and trying to change the only behavior I've known. I can make a list of all the things I know I need to do for myself regarding this situation but to take action is where I'm stumbling. I feel lost and alone.
According to my mom, last week she had a big discussion with my brother. He's no longer with the latest girl. She told him how he needs to get himself together and stop the partying nonsense. That he's going to be 38 not 24. She told him he pulled himself out of the family, etc. She said he apologized and said things would change. I told her that he needs to be the one to open his eyes and I didn't want to discuss it anymore. I went there Tuesday for a BBQ. First time I saw him in weeks. NOTHING was discussed; I wasn't shocked. Wednesday was my mom's bday. We all went to dinner and it actually was nice. We laughed; had fun. (This is where I get stuck thinking things will change) My parents went away this weekend. I've been staying at their house with the dogs. My brother did in fact take care of the dogs Thursday. Keep in mind they are really his dogs. Bosco is going to be 12 years old. He's starting to slow down which kills me to see. He also suffers from allergies. Overnight Thursday into Friday, he was really bad. So I made an appointment for the vet on Friday, knowing it was a long weekend. I got in touch with my brother who actually did come to take him. He cried 3x because Bosco is slowing down. I know he is genuinely upset watching this happen to Bosco. This is where I feel, deep down, he is a good person, but can't handle any sort of reality. Yesterday (Saturday) I was had plans to meet a friend for lunch and another friend in the evening. I was going to take care of the dogs in between. Then I decided (in my bold attempt to do for me) to ask my brother if he could get to the house by 6pm, to take care of them. He said ok. I saw online that he was with friends, on a boat. I knew he'd never get back to the house on time, but I let it go b/c he said he would do it. I texted him around 8, asking if he got to the dogs. NO response! I get a text at about 11:30 that he just got home, his boat died. So the dogs went almost 12 hours, not being attended to. With Bosco, getting up there in age, it broke my heart that they were sitting in the dark, hadn't been fed or let out. His boat has had issues but how doesn't he get in touch with him to say he won't make it to the house. I guarantee they were drinking and someone else was going to take his boat back. He never asked if the dogs were ok. So once again, my blood is boiling. Part of me wants to go off on him, letting him know how selfish he is and this is why we don't have a relationship or have the one we have. The other part of me knows it falls on deaf ears. I'm preparing for the "oh woe is me!" I don't know how to respond to that without losing my mind and going off. This is where I'm struggling. Am I afraid of the fight? I've woke up, at my moms, every morning crying. It was pretty lonely to be there without anyone. All I thought was, "Is this what it's going to be like when mom and dad aren't here? No one around and a brother that doesn't care?" I'm trying everyone; really I am. But I can't get a hold on all of this! I'm not trying to be a victim; I'm seriously stuck.
Hi, I truly understand how expectations of your loved ones in your life is hard to let go of. My dad was always emotionally unavailable to me and the more I tried to connect with him the more he disappointed me and many tears were shed too. I finally gave up my expectations and I was free and it took time. A person can't give what they don't have inside to give. It sounds like your brother is a narcissist and an avoider. You can look those terms up and see that he is unable to reach out to others and his dogs will suffer the consequences of his actions. It is good that you didn't go and bail him out with the dogs even though it does break your heart to see them suffer. He has to take responsibility for he owns and suffer consequences of his actions. People bail him out too much and he is not used to getting to the bottom of himself. You might need to go to Al-Anon and see how co-dependent people handle these addicts. I hope you have a good friend to talk to. Don't isolate yourself and find things you like to do. Do you work? What hobbies do you like? Your brother may never be there for you in your life but there are others who can substitute as family. Do you attend church? I got a lot of my strength from good friends and my relationship with Jesus. Best wishes and keep in touch. Write how you are feeling and get some help for yourself.
I'm so sorry it's taken so long to respond. The school year started and the days have rolled into one another. You said the more you tried to connect with your dad emotionally the more disappointed you were. That's part of what I feel about my brother. And as far as not giving what they don't have inside, it seems he can give to his friends, which confuses me. As far as the dog situation, he contacted me the next night at 10pm to ask what time my parents got home. I didn't respond until the next day. I told him I was annoyed that he never attempted to see how the dogs were and as far as my parents, he should call them to see what time they got home. Then he responded (as I knew he would) that I try to parent his life. My response was that he can do whatever he wants but that it was funny how he tells me I parent him yet just a few weeks ago he came to me for help, which he never took. He didn't respond to me, but went to my mom saying we had words. Then of course she told me what he said. It's the same cycle. I tried to cut my convo about it, with my mom, short. I've seen him once or twice since, at my moms. No discussion about anything. He's texted me a few times, random things. It's so frustrating. What I'm finding though, is I sort of feel like I'm isolating myself from people. I want to go out but I don't. I know that's not good. My therapist says all of this stems from how my mom was raised with an alcoholic mother. Mom and I were talking the other day and I asked her why she never talks about her childhood, telling her what my therapist thought. She said that all she watched was her mom and dad fighting, and that she just never wanted us to fight. So, in turn, this is the end result. Unintentional, but nevertheless done. I feel like I'm the one aware of it all and must break the cycle. I love my brother and hope we can find a way to have a relationship but I doubt it will ever be the one I'd hope to have. It's almost like we are acquaintances, instead of siblings.
I'm glad you are in school and keeping busy. My dad was always nice and polite with other people and totally ignored me when I was young. When I married my ex-husband, he ignored him and talked to me. That was really weird. I wrote to him a lot and told him who I was and how I thought about things. He never wrote back but that was alright because I didn't have any expectations. He would only call if someone died. We can't choose our family but we can choose our friends and many times siblings don't get along. Maybe when he grows up and appreciates you but don't hold your breath. I hope you can find some good friends and not be around users or toxic people. He sounds like he is narcisstic which is a person who thinks only about himself. Don't expect too much from him. Don't isolate yourself or listen to negative things your brother says to you. I'm glad you have a therapist and can find emotional healing. You can break the cycle and get healthy yourself and be a whole person inside. There are a lot of interesting people in this world and as you reach out to be a friend to others or help others out, then you can become happier and confident in your abilities and know you are here for a purpose. Best wishes to you.
So my brother got a dog. Yup, you read that right. I was getting ready for work Wednesday morning when my oldest friend texted me, "No your brother did not?" I was afraid to go online to see. There is a picture of an adorable dog. Instant fury raged through me. Midmorning, he sends me a picture of the dog, with the caption, "Hi Aunt J!" I didn't tell him I was mad b/c he can do whatever he wants. I said the dog was cute and asked what he named him. EVERTYHING ALWAYS ABOUT HIM!!!
I went about my day and didn't have anymore contact. My mom sends me a text, asking me over for dinner. I said I wasn't up to it and had things to do. She says my brother wants me to meet the new kid on the block. How is she not mad that she's already taking care of 2 of his other dogs??? Oh wait, I know...she never says anything. As this is happening, I feel my anger come right back up, like a volcano. I keep telling myself I can't control them; it's their decision how they act, etc. That I have to do for me and separate myself when I don't want to be there. At the same time, I feel so sad. Like I'm finding out my family is a scam.
The next day, he sends me a message, asking if I'm mad that he got a dog b/c I've been very short and have shown no interest. I responded that I have things going on myself. I will eventually meet the dog. He asks what I have going on. I tell him I'm very overwhelmed at work and have been down and in a funk. I proceed to share that I'm having difficulties finding out that an ex is dating someone (eventhough I know I made the best decision to end it) and that it's hard meeting people. NO RESPONSE!!! I wasn't shocked at all! I knew he wouldn't respond. It's just amazing how he doesn't see that I'm supposed to go running in his direction, yet doesn't even acknowledge my feelings.
I was speaking with my mom that afternoon, as I was driving to therapy. It ended in an argument b/c I told her what happened (I shouldn't have). She said that he kept saying over and over how he wasn't trying to replace his other dogs. I told her she was out of her mind and that she thinks her son walks on water. But I started crying and said it's more that he has no clue how to think about other people besides himself. I know at that moment it was me lashing out, throwing blame her way. I can't help it. I told her that this is the amazing relationship I have with my brother. Dead air ended the conversation. I haven't spoken to her since. She texted me she loves me but I haven't seen or actually spoken to her.
I'm so mad and hurt. I feel so sad and angry. I feel so incredibly alone. I've cried most of the weekend. I feel that I'm just supposed to accept them as they are and deal with this all on my own. They have to do nothing and it's all their fault. Just when I think I may be getting passed the anger, it resurfaces. As I've said before, I feel myself crawling deeper within myself. It's not good. Everything all at once. Finding out my ex is dating someone. Again, I made the best decision to break it off, but feel I'm getting no where. I'm on a dating website, trying to open myself to new possibilities. Was emailing this guy. Exchanged numbers. Told me he'd call me the other day, never did. Trying to be proactive, I texted him yesterday. He said he'd call, never did. And my family drama on top of it all, I've had enough. My trust and faith in people is shot. I just want to cry and scream!
The following user gives a hug of support to Will I Be Happy: Phoenix (09-25-2012)
Hi my friend, I know you are disappointed in your brother and his actions and behavior and your mom's enabling behavior but you have to grieve that part of your family and you cannot control or change them but you can change your attitude towards them and learn not to react to them. When you change your behavior and attitude it will come to your family as a complete surprise since they have done this "dance" or had these dynamics in your family for a long time. You can change the pattern of how your react or don't react to them. You really need to talk to someone you can share with, all your anger, hurt, disappointment and expectations of your family who will never be all that you want or need. I found that my dad could never be the father I always wanted but I finally accepted him for who he was and how I could allow him to know me. He was unable to communicate positive compliments or love to me but I chose to love him no matter what. We can't blame our parents forever, we must choose to grow up and move on and realize we are all damaged emotionally but we can choose to heal and find those who will be true friends and find happiness within. You need to forgive others and find a Celebrate Recovery Group where people will "hear" you and get to know the real you. You are unique and special and need to find who you are inside. We are not children anymore and must grow up and act like an adult and move on from enabling and toxic and narcissitic people even if they are in our own family. Best wishes to you and don't isolate yourself. Reach out to someone and find a good friend.