Online forums

Before you can post or reply in these forums, please complete your profile

Complete your profile

Before you can post or reply in these forums, please join our online community.

Forum membership is open to anyone residing in Australia.

Join the online community Community rules Coping during the Coronavirus outbreak

Forums / Relationship and family issues / Disfunctional family

Topic: Disfunctional family

6 posts, 0 answered
  1. rudyreed
    rudyreed avatar
    3 posts
    28 August 2015
    I am mid fifties woman from a big family who always got along as adults in the past. My mother got sick in her 80s and my siblings turned on each other and when my mother died 3 sat on one side of the church at the funeral and 3 on the other. One side did not go to her wake. I was very distressed that my sisters and brother were not talking and I tried very hard to help patch things up and now none of my siblings talks to me. This has been almost 10 years ago and I struggle most days not knowing how to deal with this rejection.
  2. geoff
    Life Member
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    geoff avatar
    16466 posts
    28 August 2015 in reply to rudyreed

    dear Rudyreed, hi and thank you for posting on this forum, with a query that I'm sure is very common,

    I wonder whether jealousy is the underlining problem here, especially with the three who didn't even go to her wake, and then decided to sit on the opposite side in the church, or weren't chosen as executors so 'got their nose out of joint'.

    If this is what happened I think that it's going to very difficult to repair, because there will be underlying hostility.

    Can I ask you before this 10 year period, were you in contact with the rest of the family, or perhaps the go-between, and I also wonder whether any of these 2 groups communicate between themselves, which I know that this is something you may not be aware of. L Geoff. x

     

    1 person found this helpful
  3. rudyreed
    rudyreed avatar
    3 posts
    30 August 2015 in reply to geoff
    Thank you Geoff for replying. My family have always been very different from each other, but somehow we all accepted each other for who they were. I am the middle child and sometimes I was best buddies with older siblings and sometimes the younger ones but we always seemed to get along. I was often the most needy one as I had cancer in my early twenties and married the wrong type of man who turned into a heroine addict and had 2 children then divorced, single mum struggling etc etc. Then I met my current husband of 27 years and have gone from strength to strength. I was the one who stayed with my mother for many weeks when she was sick, because I was the one available at the time. I do not know what I did to have everyone dislike me so much as it has happened over many years. First one, then 2 then three, now 5 have no time for me at all. I still try to contact them but I get returned letters, unanswered emails and texts. I have heard from nieces that my sister is upset by me but nobody can tell me why. The only thing I think it has been because I have been too helpful and generous. Firstly when my mother needed help and I helped her move home to a nursing home, then I have lent alot of money to one sister who lost her house to the bank. Then my husband and I painted another sisters house because she lost her job and we thought she might need to sell. Another time we took in my brother when he was broke and homeless and the list goes on. I am at a loss as to how to accept this as I am a giving person who does not expect to be repaid, but I never thought I would get condemned for it and I have one sister tell me she really really hates me, without explanation as to why. I am searching for someway of coping with this. Thankfully my husband loves me very much but his answer is to forget about them all and live life, but I have grown up in a very close family until I was mid forties and I find it hard to forget about the times when it was good and loving. I cry most days and I am tired of crying. 
  4. geoff
    Life Member
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    geoff avatar
    16466 posts
    31 August 2015 in reply to rudyreed

    dear Rudyreed, thanks for replying back to us.

    From what you have said is that you were the key couple you and your husband helping your family out as best you could, well that's something which would be very difficult for most people to do.

    What concerns me is you have or had cancer and I wonder how you are coping with this now.

    Having your mother moved into a nursing home is something that is so hard to cope with, because years ago she was the one that guided us through the good and bad, fed and clothed all of us but now she is incapable of looking after herself, this is really heartbreaking, because the same happened with my Mum and it is demoralising and very upsetting.

    I wonder whether you were the only to be 'power of attorney', and if so then this would create a barrier between you and your family, even though you were trying to help them out, and siblings can be very sensitive and get their 'nose out of joint'.

    The money you have lent your sister, well maybe you won't get any of this back, as it's no different than my (ex) brother in law who we also lent thousands of dollars to but will never see a cent returned, so could this be a reason why see doesn't want to see you any more, just in case you ask for a return.

    You were very generous, and unfortunately this isn't recognised by those who needed it, not now or in the future, and we wonder why we would ever try and help them if we knew this was going to happen, personally I would have said no to my wife's brother, but he was only communicating with my wife and not me, and now realise how stupid we were, but the horse has bolted.

    This is something that you will find hard to accept, but the more you try and contact them, with no return correspondence is going to eat away at you, I know myself and I understand, but what a husband, married for 27 years where the both of you love each other, you're got a gem here.

    For them not wanting to contact you at the moment doesn't mean that they will in the future, so keep that hope in the back of your mind. L Geoff. x

    1 person found this helpful
  5. rudyreed
    rudyreed avatar
    3 posts
    1 September 2015 in reply to geoff
    Thank you Geoff. Your words make a positive difference to me, writing and getting your feedback makes a big difference. Yes I was made power of attorney only because I was there and available. My younger sister probably felt jealous but did not have the same tolerance for my mother. Mum liked a drink and a ciggy and I didn't try to change her. I put up with her smoking inside as it was her home and I secretly watered down her wine. This had an effect on my sisters opinion of me. My sister would not buy her wine and made her smoke outside in the cold.  She believes my tolerance of mum contributed to her death several years after. When mum went to aged care my brother stopped buying her wine and banned anyone buying her cigarettes or wine. I live in Qld and she was in NSW. Mum would tell me how sad she was. I asked them to water down wine and a ciggy would not harm, but they hate drinking and smoking. My sister now lives in Vancouver where my oldest son has moved to for work. He and his wife had our first grandchild last year. I had pushed most of the awful family issues out of my mind but now my son has withdrawn from me, I believe she influenced him somehow. My grand daughter turned one a few weeks ago and we have not received any photos of her birthday party, even though I have asked. My sister told me twice she "Really really hates me". We were with my mother and I said "that is not a very nice thing to say in front of your mother" she replied "I will shout it from a mountain" I was shocked but said she has the right to her opinion and I asked her to stop the car and walked several klms in the rain. That was nearly 10 years ago. I put her out of my mind even though we were once great friends. My son has developed a relationship with her and she spends time with my grand daughter.  I ask my son for her address, but no. I sent a brooch to my sons address for him to pass onto her. He did not do this. I sent her a fruit basket to her husbands work place No reply. I can't help thinking I a horrible person, but don't admit it? I did have cancer in my twenties and after  2 surgeries, years of treatment, tests and doctors visits, I have the attitude, life is precious, can end anytime so treasure every moment. I am not materialistic and happy to share and help those who may be in need. I am so grateful this service exists. I do have a loving husband but when I talk about these issues he says Stuff them all ! Writing to you really helps clear my head.Thank You x
  6. geoff
    Life Member
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    geoff avatar
    16466 posts
    2 September 2015 in reply to rudyreed

    dear Rudyreed, thanks again for replying.

    I know that you have mentioned your cancer, but after the surgeries I hope that it has become benign, but that's a question no one can tell, but I really hope so.

    From what you have told me I do think that your siblings were jealous that you had a closer relationship with your mother, but you appeared to be very sensible and alert to what your mum wanted, and why would the rest of your family want to try and change her, it just doesn't seem fair.

    In my opinion if someone who is reaching their prime years there is no point in trying to stop what they have always loved, let them have what they want until their time comes.

    I know an elderly couple in their 80's and have always smoked their entire life a packet of cigarettes each, costly for them, but they are happy and don't have emphysema, so if anybody tried to stop them from smoking would be the worse decision ever, they are happy, struggling with money, but the smokes are what they love and definitely want.

    Your siblings do have their nose out of joint, as you were power of attorney, and by being so does annoy the rest of the family, but you were the right choice and your mother made a very good decision, but this whole reason why they don't want to have anything to do with you is because they are angry that they weren't made power of attorney, in other words jealous.

    I wonder whether your mum is still alive, I hope so, because you would be doing the very best for her, unlike what any of your siblings would be doing.

    You have a husband and a half, and boy how lucky you are to have each other. L Geoff. x

Stay in touch with us

Sign up below for regular emails filled with information, advice and support for you or your loved ones.


Sign me up