Author Topic: Time to give the cut direct?  (Read 9020 times)

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audrey1962

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Re: Time to give the cut direct?
« Reply #15 on: September 24, 2013, 10:58:59 AM »
It sounds like you and your brother have different values. There's nothing rude about that (except for the comments about your mom). However, if you want to maintain a relationship with your nephew, you will have to realize that your brother and his wife won't change. Only you can change how you react to them. Nothing you do or say will change them, that's just who they are.

If you can't be around them without being angry, then yes, you should take some cooling off time. But when you do re-engage, things will be the same. They will still be the same people they are now.

Goosey

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Re: Time to give the cut direct?
« Reply #16 on: September 24, 2013, 12:01:12 PM »
It doesn't sound like your brother is doing anything WRONG (except the comments about the mom), just differently. The majority of the things you mentioned aren't your business and aren't rude:

1. It was very nice of you to buy them clothes. Once they were out of your hands, it's not your business how they treated them. It wasn't a direct insult to you that they didn't use the right detergent to get stains out.
2. You don't like that they eloped and announced it in a way you don't prefer. It's not about you and they have no obligation to fall into line with your expectations simply because you want it that way.
3. The name change - I'm actually offended on behalf of your brother. He has no requirement to keep a name because of "family history". It's HIS name to do what he wants with it. He could rename himself Peanut Butter Fluffernutter and the only rude thing would be if people didn't respect his wishes. Your dad needs to get over it.

You don't sound like you LIKE your brother and his wife. That's fine, you don't need to. But a cut direct in this case would be extreme because, well, they didn't actually DO anything to you. A cut direct in this case would be "I don't like the way you chose to do things, so I don't want to talk to you" rather than "you are so heinously rude/toxic that I can't even acknowledge you."

As other said, back off on the relationship. Try to remember that the way they live their life isn't a comment on yours and that you have no ability to change the way they are choosing to live their life.

Virg

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Re: Time to give the cut direct?
« Reply #17 on: September 24, 2013, 12:05:19 PM »
I'm with the others who said that you should leave the name change out of it.  My perspective is that, if your father is upset about him changing his name because there's nobody to carry on the family name, then you can do it instead.  If you can't because you married and changed your surname, then put some thought into why he's not allowed to do the same thing.  Your mother's comment that he's no longer "that person" sounds like a capital way to alienate him and his wife, who are the people who decide how much access she has to her grandchild.  Just as your brother needs to consider how his actions affect family, so does she.

All told, a cooling-off period sounds wise at this point.  The Cut Direct means that you'll never be seeing your nephew, so you shouldn't do that if you want any relationship with him going forward.

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missmarie

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Re: Time to give the cut direct?
« Reply #18 on: October 03, 2013, 01:55:52 AM »
Thank you everyone for the valuable input.  I have decided to just lay low as far as my brother and his wife are concerned.   He's phoned me a couple of times and I've chosen not to answer (thank you , call display! ) and  since I'll be away for Thanksgiving, I won't have to deal with him much until Christmas.   
He just keeps showing me how wise this decision is!  My mom was in the hospital for the last week and he showed up once.  Out of eight days he only managed a half hour visit.  He has very flexible hours at work, his wife is a SAHM, and a half hour was the best he could manage.
 I just don't understand how we got to this point, considering a year ago he was one of my best friends. 
As far as the name thing goes, I think if he had chosen a name in honor of someone or something, or even if he had been honest with us all, it wouldn't feel like such a big deal, but I found out at work when I saw one of his business cards left in the break room with his business flyer.  My mom had no idea at all.
 I will probably answer if he calls this week, just to find out how the Peanut is doing but I very much fear that the close, sharing relationship we had is gone.
Thanks again!  It's wonderful to have this sounding board of unbiased third parties to share with!  :D
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Pen^2

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Re: Time to give the cut direct?
« Reply #19 on: October 03, 2013, 03:28:20 AM »
Great update! I'm glad you decided on a cooling-off period instead of the nuclear bomb that is The Cut. Nothing your brother has done so far approaches a need for The Cut.

When you choose to answer the phone, be ready to have to leave suddenly because something just came up, and to be very busy so you can't possibly babysit or answer calls often etc. You don't want to get into a discussion about how they treated their baby clothes or anything that specific, so just don't go there. Have a few stock phrases ready to redirect the conversation. That way, you can be civil and not get caught up in topics you find to be more emotional.

And I agree with every single part of Goosey's post. Apart from being rude to your mother, nothing your brother has done is rude, just a little odd. I think you're just different people who put different levels of importance on things, and that's making it hard to understand each other's actions. He might be just as confused as you are. But you can never see how these things will develop. It is perfectly possible that in ten years, you two will have become best friends all over again on a new level. Who knows?

For now, though, you're doing the right thing. Well done!

atirial

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Re: Time to give the cut direct?
« Reply #20 on: October 03, 2013, 05:38:57 AM »
I think a cooling off period would be wiser than the cut direct. It doesn't sound like anything he has done is rude, just different. How much he sees your mother in the hospital is between him and her - and even if he has flexible working hours he may not have had enough time to book it off.
 
I just don't understand how we got to this point, considering a year ago he was one of my best friends. 
As far as the name thing goes, I think if he had chosen a name in honor of someone or something, or even if he had been honest with us all, it wouldn't feel like such a big deal, but I found out at work when I saw one of his business cards left in the break room with his business flyer.  My mom had no idea at all.
Just to ask a small question, has he actually changed his name legally? If it was on a business card, is it a DBA ("doing business as"), or a stage or pen name? If so, that would explain why he did not tell anyone he had changed his name.
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Tea Drinker

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Re: Time to give the cut direct?
« Reply #21 on: October 03, 2013, 02:17:06 PM »
I think a cooling off period would be wiser than the cut direct. It doesn't sound like anything he has done is rude, just different. How much he sees your mother in the hospital is between him and her - and even if he has flexible working hours he may not have had enough time to book it off.
 
I just don't understand how we got to this point, considering a year ago he was one of my best friends. 
As far as the name thing goes, I think if he had chosen a name in honor of someone or something, or even if he had been honest with us all, it wouldn't feel like such a big deal, but I found out at work when I saw one of his business cards left in the break room with his business flyer.  My mom had no idea at all.
Just to ask a small question, has he actually changed his name legally? If it was on a business card, is it a DBA ("doing business as"), or a stage or pen name? If so, that would explain why he did not tell anyone he had changed his name.

Good point. A friend of mine and her partner have a shared social surname, but for legal purposes are still using their previous names. (I was going to say "original names," but her partner's is one he chose many years ago, and did a legal name change to.) I suspect her birth family are still sending her mail under her original name.
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DavidH

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Re: Time to give the cut direct?
« Reply #22 on: October 03, 2013, 02:46:17 PM »
It sounds like distance is a good thing at this point, but if you want that relationship, you may need to do some work.  For example, rather than just be angry that he eloped, talk to him about it calmly, say I was hurt that you never told me before you got married, and then see what he says.  There might be a reason, there might not.  It's unlikely that decision was about you, so do you need to take it personally?  Similarly, have you ever calmly asked him why he decided to change his name? 

Your mother has chosen to make a huge deal of the name change.   "My mother is downsizing her house to move into a retirement community and has said that he's not getting any of the stuff she's been holding on to because it's for Brother "Smith" and he's decided he doesn't want to be that person."  If she is saying he's no longer her son, e.g. not that person since he changes his name, then how upset can she reasonably be that he only visited her once and it was for a short time?  It doesn't seem likely that they'd have much to talk about.

snowdragon

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Re: Time to give the cut direct?
« Reply #23 on: October 03, 2013, 03:16:35 PM »
It sounds like you made a great decision. Now stop falling in line with his expectations. No more baby stuff, none at all. this is their kid, they need to provide for it( is peanut a boy or girl,I can't recall)   and stop expecting others to do it for them. They are cutting the family from so many other areas, but when they need something provided ( babycare, furniture, clothes) they have their hands out. Oy.


and I'd stay out of the middle of mom and brother.

Mikayla

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Re: Time to give the cut direct?
« Reply #24 on: October 05, 2013, 01:41:29 PM »
I agree with the last 2 posts.  The OP mentioned mom's comment about brother not getting anything when she downsizes, and then later you seemed concerned he didn't visit her in the hospital.  You may be "correct" on both counts, but your relationship with your bro is separate from what happens between him and your mom.

Don't get me wrong, he sounds boorish and immature.  But you don't want to get offended on your mom's behalf.  Anything you decide should be based on the adult relationship between you and your brother. 

LifeOnPluto

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Re: Time to give the cut direct?
« Reply #25 on: October 06, 2013, 03:15:23 AM »
I'm curious to know why your brother expected you and your mother to buy basic baby items (like the diapers, etc)? From your comment about flexible hours and business cards, it sounds like he has a job (and thus, is earning an income). So why is he expecting other people to pay for the upkeep of his own child?

He sounds rather immature and ungrateful, but I still agree with other posters about keeping your distance (rather than giving him the complete Cut Direct). Hopefully the responsibilities of being a dad will make him grow up a bit.

missmarie

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Re: Time to give the cut direct?
« Reply #26 on: October 21, 2013, 03:46:33 AM »
Quick update: We didn't end up going away for thanksgiving so we attended the dinner at my mom's.  It wasn't too awkward,  everyone sort of just skipped over any mention of the wedding, name change, or anything else that was likely to cause anyone distress. 
The name change was a legal one, complete with new birth certificate. 
I was really glad to see the Peanut though! What a porkchop!   ;D
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Owly

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Re: Time to give the cut direct?
« Reply #27 on: October 21, 2013, 08:40:54 AM »
Given how everyone has been reacting to your brother's name change, I'm not surprised he didn't tell anyone. Who wants to deal with that kind of drama? And he did still visit his mom in the hospital despite the negative and downright hostile attitude she has toward him right now. i mean really, she has essentially declared him "not-my-son" and you're upset that he didn't visit her enough?

I'm getting kind of a scapegoat/black sheep vibe from the way you talk about your brother, is there any chance something like that is in play? I think that trying to understand his motivations and perspective could go a long way toward making him feel less intolerable to you.

I am definitely glad to hear that Thanksgiving went smoothly, though! It sounds like you all handled the situation very well.

Goosey

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Re: Time to give the cut direct?
« Reply #28 on: October 21, 2013, 08:44:07 AM »
I still don't get why the name change is this Big Deal. I think your parents are being very selfish and self-involved. Kids don't have to be a reflection of their parents - even when it comes to their name. Cutting him out of the will because of this? It's no one's business what he wants to call himself and your and your parents' attitude towards him regarding his decision are really over the top.

*inviteseller

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Re: Time to give the cut direct?
« Reply #29 on: October 21, 2013, 09:10:37 AM »
I would be upset if I were the parents simply because it was done, as was the wedding, with nothing being said.  If he had gone to his parents and said "Listen, I need to do this for my career.  It doesn't change who I am inside, but this will help me."  Instead, they are finding out everything via FB.  But yet, while he can't tell them about names and weddings, he sure can put his hand out for them to supply the basic needs for HIS child.