A bit of background……..
My relationship with my elder and only sister has, for most of our lives, been fraught with tension. I have always gotten the sense that she was perfectly happy being an only child, and the arrival of siblings caused her to declare a permanent war. We also have a brother – the middle child – who has also had his challenges with her, but he tends to pretty much go along to get along. Not a problem, really; at the risk of sounding clichéd, it is what it is. This is not a big deal, mind you. I have my own life, she/he have hers/his, and we are cordial when circumstances put us in the same place at the same time.
For the last four years, our elderly father has lived with my husband and me. The last of our four children is also still in residence. Sister was not pleased when this happened, as she likes to be in charge and considers herself not only a medical expert, but also the matriarch of the family. Brother chose to deal with the situation by absenting himself; this is typical behavior for him. Sister reacted by using outright hostility and nastiness; it was clear that she wished the living arrangements to fail, so that she could declare herself right. Whatever……..
In reality, things have worked out just fine. It hasn’t been easy (in fact, it’s been a real challenge, but one we are up to), but my dad has been wanted, well-cared for, and happy living with us and our family. Considering that he’s 91, he’s doing just fine and so are we.
Aforementioned Elder Sister has one child. In the family, said child has always been known as The Princess. She was raised to focus only on herself and to put her own needs and wishes ahead of anyone else’s. Again, at the risk of sounding repetitive, not a big deal; it is what it is.
Recently, The Princess remarried. (Anyone surprised that her first marriage ended? During the first marriage, she didn’t work, but was annoyed that her husband was too tired to do things………perhaps because he was working 80+ hours a week to keep her in a fancy house, designer clothing, plastic surgery and a Lexus?. Princess, I should mention, dropped out of college after one semester and is seemingly incapable of holding down a permanent job. When she and her husband split up, her mother jumped in and supported her. Again, not a problem – her choice.
However, The Princess met a new guy and started planning her second wedding. We wished her every happiness in this new relationship.
What was disturbing, however, was the guest list for the wedding. Prior to sending out invitations, Sister Dearest called me and informed me that our father (yes, the man who has lived here and whom my husband and I have cared for these last four years) was not invited to the wedding. Her reason? She wanted my husband and I to “enjoy ourselves and have a day out without Dad”. Huh? So I’m supposed to tell our father that he’s not invited to his granddaugher’s wedding?
My response was to RSVP as a “decline”. I used the excuse that I had promised our youngest daughter (22 and also not invited) a trip out of state to visit her older brother, his wife and her only niece (none of whom were invited) during the only time she was allowed to take a vacation from her new job. (True, incidentally.) Our oldest son and his live-in girlfriend WERE invited, but respectfully declined when they heard that other siblings and grandfather were excluded. We all sent lovely gifts, just fyi.
Please understand that there is no outward family hostility here……..in public and at other family occasions, we are all polite and cordial.
Guess I just wanted to share, to vent, and to ask………..does anyone else have a family this dysfunctional??? 0927-15
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