Wednesday, December 15, 2010

An Actual Exchange of Text Messages

Let's revisit this sister crap, shall we?

Since I last discussed the issue, I sent my sister a birthday gift (she ignored my birthday). She returned the package unopened. (S very sweetly responded, "You should send her a note and say that it wasn't nice of her to do that.")

I called her to ask why she did that. She screamed at me. Something about how she was in therapy because of me and that I still need address what I'm doing to her. (Present tense noted.)

I responded asking what was I doing to her? I'm just living my life.

Then she hung up.

I had a discussion with hubby about the contact she's been making with C via Facebook, and if she's unwilling to have a basic relationship with us, is it appropriate for her to be contacting the kids, give them gifts, etc? We're very much wavering on that. But I don't feel comfortable with feeling like she's going behind my back to talk to my kids.

Today a package arrived for "The _________ Children: C, M & S"

So I sent my sister the following text message

Me: I have concerns about you sending things to my children while refusing a relationship with me. I'd like to try to work this out with you. I understand you are angry at me. I've been angry at you, too. But you are still my sister and I still love you. Let's try to resolve this. Please?

A few minutes later the reply came:

A: With the attitude that it is still all about you -- i'm not ready -- maybe after a few thousand dollars of more therapy about you I might be.

I then sent the following two texts:

Me: Huh? What attitude? I am trying to reach out to you for the sake of each of us and our families. Could we please talk?

Me: Please call me. We lead vastly different lives and have made very different life choices. I would like to understand how what I do 3000 miles away affects your life so deeply.

And...nothing from her.

For years I've known what the basic issues are with her:

  1. I was born
  2. I had a decent relationship with Dad (though still very complex). She like to claim I was Dad's favorite. I think we grew up in very different households with parents at very different stages of life and parenting.
  3. I did well in school and went to a decent college. That *was* totally calculated on my part, though it had nothing to do with her, because...
  4. I left AZ and stayed away. She has long said she hates AZ and always wanted to leave. But didn't in the end.
  5. I've had some professional success [despite current unemployment status]. I think the book thing has thrown her over the edge. She can't see that I had to *work* for all that.
  6. I have a mostly happy and functional marriage. Yup, i do. And proud of it.
  7. I have a daughter. She didn't even choose boys' names with her first two pregnancies, and I remember the call when she found out #3 was a boy, too. It wasn't a happy call.
  8. I'm sure there's more.

But now it's just exploded, apparently. I'm alternately amused and horrified that she ascribes so much power to me. I don't want it! I refuse it!

I refuse to take responsibility for the choices my sister has made in her life. While it apparently has yet to happen, she needs to accept responsibility for her own life. Her choices, the consequences thereof, and her future happiness. But this situation *is* hurtful to me. As much of a nutcase as she is, she's still my sister.

I talked with hubby about the package received and the text exchange. We agreed to accept these gifts. But we also agreed that we needed to open them to look at them to make sure they were okay. One gift (to M) was completely inappropriate for an 11 year old and C's gift was FAR more expensive than M's or S's. For someone for whom "favoritism" is an issue, she appears to be playing favorites with my kids. Ironic, no?

I'll send off the gifts for her kids. Trying to decide what to do about the gifts for her and her husband. And her birthday gift which still sits next to me. Send them to my mom's house perhaps? I don't know if that's the right thing to do.

At any rate, the saga continues.


Asdis said...

I think your sister seriously needs to grow up a bit. She's having hissy fits like a 3-year-old! *hugs* to you. It can't be easy trying to read her.

J said...

Thanks, Asdis. Yes, she does need to grow. She seems permanently stuck in early adolescence. Sadly, I don't hold out much hope for that growing up to happen. She's already 56.

Thanks again.

Lynne Thompson said...

At some point, you might want to decide to just cut off can do it quietly and without fanfare, but I bet it would make you feel better.

HUGS You don't deserve it not one bit.