Myles, my first question after reading that is -
What result do you hope to achieve by confronting your sister?
(Is it something for you, or is it something for her?)
My follow-up questions are:
Do you think you have a chance of achieving it? And do you think it is a reasonable goal?
These are the things my dh always asks me whenever I get in a quandary about confronting someone that is causing me emotional turmoil. Frequently, I end up talking through it enough that I realize I just want the emotional satisfaction of having the last word, or having made my point, or saying whatever to prove something, or telling my side, but when I start walking through the whole process about what the end result will be (satisfaction from having the last word? really? when all it's going to do is just reopen the argument, and the other person probably won't just take my brilliant incisive logic as the ultimate conclusion?) I realize that what I hope to achieve (maybe peace?) and what I am yearning to provide (justice?) are possibly quite opposed to each other.
So before I blather on and use up my daily parentheses ration, think a bit on exactly what you want to happen, and how you see it going, and how you see her reacting to this confrontation. I know it's hard.
Gwenn, I'd keep an eye on that HIPAA violator. As far as the smell commentator, I know it's rude, but sometimes people can't help but blurt out what kinds of things cross their minds, and it wouldn't occur to them that you might be offended, esp. if she realized that is was because of the AC and obviously wasn't because of your habit of peeing in the corner.
And it was so trivial of her ... the child said "bath" but instead of "th" it was more like a t with a stream of air. Wasn't a th in my book - wasn't exactly a t - but in the moment I wrote /t/. And she said "Oh, it wasn't a t. I would call that a th." But it WASN'T. So I later changed it to more precise t(h) meaning there was a stream of air. I hope she saw that when she read my protocol. *****!
Me (38) DH (45) & furbabies * m/c 7/08 4/12 11/12
Myles - I am reading the Buddhism for Mothers book (it was you who recommended it, correct?). Love it - about halfway through and I can see how it would be helpful in stressful situations. Made me interested in buddhism as a philosophy and way of dealing with regular old life. I have found some podcasts to listen to and explore a bit.
I had a dream that my dad died last night. Ugh. I hate that. He already died 10 years ago - I hate it when my brain makes me live through it again.
"Any idiot can face a crisis; it is this day-to-day living that wears you out." -Anton Chekhov
Myles, I think I'd let dh tell him alone and I am really digging Lydia's advice. Wish someone had said that to me when I was battling my brother's wife a few years ago. I still cringe at some of the things we said to each other. Luckily we now pretend it never happened.
Gwenn, I would be so annoyed by both those scenarios.
My brother and one of my greatest girlfriends came over tonite. I adore them. She's a beekeeper and brought me some honey she harvested.
I spent the whole evening either breastfeeding or pacing and patting my fussy Sawyer but it was still a lovely time. They just left to go to Madison and likely to the capitol square where things are absolutely nuts right now as they passed that ridiculous budget repair bill in a very shady way.
katycat, what an awful dream. I hope it didn't throw you into a spin for the rest of the day.
Thanks for the advice and support about my sis, guys. It sounds like we're all on the same page with letting DH handle the actual talking to BIL, and that's fine. A part of me feels like it's a form of meddling for either me or Steve to "tattle" on my sister, but maybe that's just me still letting my sister get into my head. As you all can see, I'm taking no pleasure in this whole fiasco, trying to distance myself from it as much as possible, and yet I'm sensitive to the slightest suggestion from anyone that I might enjoy having this to hold over her.
Steve, OTOH, is very clear on what the "right" thing to do is in this situation. His own brother learned that his wife of 20 yrs had been cheating on him, got a divorce, got the house, main custody of the kids and after a lot of turmoil is happy with a new girlfriend. And all this happened within the last year. So he's looking at my BIL as though he's his brother in this situation and feels like he absolutely deserves to know.
I agree that BIL deserves to know. I just don't know if we're the way he should find out.
Whatever he does, I told DH this weekend that I'm going to stand by him no matter what goes down. Plus, I warned him not to expect BIL to thank him for the news.
Here's why: My sister's most recent lover is only one founder/executive of the company they all started. 5 years ago, my sister cheated on her DH with another guy who started the company with her, who also happened to be her ex-boyfriend from age 20-22. (A 3rd founder/executive is my sister's ex-boyfriend from age 21-27; yes there is overlap there. She cheated on ex-bf #1 with ex-bf #2. She also cheated on ex-bf #2 with my BIL. See the pattern?) My dh is utterly disgusted by her serial infidelity along with the "incest" and says she's being "passed around" by all the officers of the company.
Anyway, with the cheating incident 5 yrs ago, BIL found out, had a talk with her then-lover (ex-bf #1) behind closed doors and came to some sort of "gentlemen's agreement" with him that no one knows anything about. Since then, my sister has continued to go into work and see the guy every day, and this guy comes to all their parties, and even GAVE them half a million dollars for them to put down on their current house. Nowhere in there did my sister's husband put his foot down about the other guy's wife needing to know. In fact, he sees her at parties and just pretends his own wife hadn't been banging that poor woman's husband.
So that's the reason why I say that BIL might not thank DH for the information. BIL himself has a history of keeping other people's infidelities a secret from their spouses. There must be some part of him that believes that people might be better off not knowing.
DH says he's fully aware that BIL might not see things the same way, but says that he's going to go with what his own moral compass is telling him to do. Even if BIL tells him to go eff himself for telling him, DH says he'll still walk away feeling like he did what he thinks he should have done. (And that's why I love my DH.)
Along those same lines - and to answer your question, Lydia - I don't expect to get any satisfaction from my sister out of talking to her. I guess I didn't make that clear in my previous post about her. She's bi-polar, an alcoholic, and has an entirely different value system from my own. No, I can't see her sitting up and realizing what an a-hole she's been for the last couple of decades.
I just don't like leaving things unsaid if I really wish I'd said them. The last 4-5 months have been me doing what I call "s#i+-boxing" which is essentially me meditating negatively about her and consequently building a box of s#i+ in my head full of these negative thoughts.
The only other time I was in a situation like this was with that Ayn Rand ex-boyfriend guy I keep bringing up in here. He was so, so unjust and evil towards me. I stayed mad with him for 3 months and tried to bottle it all in, knowing I would never get through to him or make him see the error of his ways if I tried. I finally let it all out in a 13-page letter. Of course, he never conceded to even half my points (and there was another lame reconciliation attempt followed by a messy abrupt break-up that probably could have been avoided if I'd just continued not speaking to him). Still, I look back and feel good about the way I articulated my position on the whole matter in those 13 pages.
Hopefully, it won't be 13 pages this time around, but I'd like to at least try to make my position as clear as possible, even if I know she'll never agree with it. I have the same painful knot in my neck today that I had when I was mad at that evil ex-boyfriend of mine. They are the only 2 people who've given me this knot.
The plan is to make my case... to say 'Here's your position, and now here's my position. We differ on A, B & C and as a result of those differences, this is how you've offended/hurt me. I don't trust you and can't be close to you for those reasons.' I'll leave it at that, but leave the door open to her for future reconciliation if she should ever awaken to my point of view.
I know it won't be as simple or clean as that, but I just have to try. The thing is, I still love my sister. I wouldn't put this much effort into it if it were someone I didn't care about.
I confess, you guys are totally my sounding board for the situation. I'm working through all my thoughts and feelings as I type them out to you. So and thank you for being here for me.
My friend's sister works for the FDA, and even though she signed a non-disclosure agreement about the foods she tests, she did inform her family in no uncertain terms that they should stay extremely far away from Splenda. And still I use it on a regular basis. I'm workin' on kicking the habit, I swear. It's one of my last major vices...
I'm actually a little behind on stuff I have to do, so please forgive me if I don't log in tomorrow after laying all my problems on you guys. I really do appreciate having you guys here to listen to me.
I don't know when it's time to speak up in my own job. I said something on Friday and John was all sweet and understanding and sorry...but then Monday he was a tyrant and he even threw what I said up in my face. Wasn't surprised by that at all. He's quickly becoming a person I dislike. I can only make so many excuses for someone's bad behavior.
I know there was a lot more I wanted to say, but so much was posted I can't remember it all.
That's pretty freaky, Myles.
Sorry about your dream, Katycat.
I just had coffee with 3 other Americans I just met and it was so lovely. I'm happy.
Last edited by AmeriBrit; 03-10-2011 at 10:27 AM.
I saw the home page. Very disturbing. That name was just too coincidental, though.
BTW, I hadn't intended to come here. I just logged into APA on autopilot. I thought I was using a bookmark for something work-related. My fingers got the best of me. LOL.
Your subconscious mind wants to be here.
I just had a lunch date with Rich & Conner. Today is Rich's bday and he gets it off paid every year. It was a nice treat except Rich is in horrible tooth pain and has a dentist appointment for later this afternoon. It kinda put a damper on things. And Conner wasn't in the mood to be fully cooperative.
This is what I'm going to buy this weekend. http://cgi.ebay.com/Lambs-and-Ivy-6-...item20b70de1f5
Just makes me smile to look at. I would do it now but DH said this weekend. I can't believe he even agreed so will go with that. I don't know why it makes a difference if today or Saturday but it does to him. He likes a day or two to mentally prepare is what he says (he did that with the bloodwork we had done too...could have done it Friday after the appt but he wanted Monday so he could "mentally prepare" for it.
I went to an early lunch....but I'm pretty tired today coming in so early. I pretty much want to eat everything in site. Good thing I'm at my desk and can't really eat at my desk (my office I can but not out in public area). Don't want to cook tonight either. Think that I will stop off and pick up a take and bake pizza from the grocery store (they are very good...better than delivery pizza places).
Oh and on top of being tired, I'm ovulating and in pain from that. Which kind of sucks to have deal with that and AF and all....and have it be pretty useless.
While I don't have the magnitude of sister problems that Myles does, I do have recurring issues with my sister. So every few weeks, or every few months, and definitely a couple times a year dh hears me muttering about my sister and pacing around and then he hears more than he wants to hear about what she did or said and how she does this all the time and how she never changes and then what I want to say to her.
This thing is pretty useful for one-time issues as well as things like this with my sister, because we have the same old problems all the time, and I can predict pretty accurately how she'll react to anything. We have gone through periods of not speaking to each other and she holds grudges for decades. Every year around the holidays, she brings up how I was late for Christmas in 1987.
I think part of what dh is hoping to attain by reinforcing this with me is to not hear about my problems with my sister. But oh well. It's actually worked pretty well for me so far. Every time I start muttering again, he asks me what I want. I tell him. He asks if it is reasonable (given whatever situation I'm in with my sister). Usually it's not, so I come up with a reasonable goal. My sister and I have gotten along better since I've done this.
For work, I've started doing this too. And even if it's meant that I get less off my chest AT work, I think it's been better for me professionally that when I do actually say something, it is with a concrete goal and a solution in mind. If I just need to complain about someone or something, I have an outlet (like a co-worker, or a husband, or you guys) who will help me problem-solve without actually impacting the problem.
For your boss, Chrissy, for example, I particularly don't think it's a question of taking the high road, and I especially think that this is a good time to question what you hope to achieve by confronting him or talking to him about how he makes you feel, especially since he frequently uses any communication against you. If you hope to be able to just vent and make yourself feel better, that may only help temporarily, and will probably only hurt you in the long run. If you think that by talking to him candidly about how he's making you feel, he will change, that is a better goal, but then you have to question whether that is realistic, and it is probably not.
So if you want to vent, I would vent elsewhere- not to him. If you want him to stop behaving like a jerk, I would start documenting with the goal of reporting him. If you want to just get along and not make waves, I'd minimize contact and try to zen out as much as possible. That's all I mean by thinking about goals and results. Not taking the high road at all.
This is something I'm still trying to learn myself. Sorry it was so long.
I wouldn't be able to cope with life if I couldn't vent to Rich. I can whine about the same thing to him a million times over and he doesn't ever seem to get tired of hearing about it. I need him!
I can't avoid my boss. Like I said we're in a small room and it's just us. If I ignore him or if I talk to him, he has something to say. I'm trying to decide between just finding another job or going over his head. Yesterday he irritated me enough that I actually thought, "Why should I go? I haven't done anything wrong."