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AlmiraGulch

A Very Long WWYD

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I'm the youngest of 6 siblings. Not everyone gets along, or even speaks to each other, but I've always sort of been Switzerland in the family disputes. I'm closer to some than others, but i've never just not been on speaking terms with anyone (even though we may go for very long periods of time without having a conversation......like, years).

 

Last summer some things came to light that made two of my sisters (B and K) very angry with two of the others. In a nutshell, they believe that the eldest (P) has pretty much been playing the Puppet Master role with the some of the others for years and it has caused rifts in relationships. Honestly, it's true. She has. For example, one would say "I think I'm going to reach out to S and try to make amends" and she would warn that person to be careful of S, while simultaneously telling S the same thing about the other. There was quite a lot of that going on for many, many years. More than 20.

 

There is a ton of detail I could add, but the net of it is that T, the second oldest, isn't really speaking to me anymore. I'm assuming that's because two of the others have cut off ties with her (nor formally, but it's not hard to figure out) and I'm closest to those two. I've heard that T has said things like "I can't stand to be in the room with the two of them", talking about me and K. I know her, so I'm sure this is true. She and I used to be very close, and while our relationship has certainly morphed and is more supericial than it has been in years passed, I'm ok with that. I rarely just cut people off. I love my sister and I love her kids and grandkids. I don't want to have no contact at all, but it really seems like she's doing that to me now. I could let it go, but it will come to a head when the holidays come around, as I know for sure that at least one of my sister's and her family will not be at the Thanksgiving celebration that our niece always hosts, won't come to my house for my annual Christmas party if T is there, and all neither of them can understand why I still care to have contact her at all. I'm tired of being in the middle, and being guilty by association.

 

I don't know what to do. I could approach T, but I have before and she's one to bury her head in the sand and will either not respond at all or pretend there's nothing wrong. If I let it go, it WILL be an issue later in the year. I guess I'm looking for opinions and options I'm not considering.

 

By the way, it isn't like we talk all the time anyway. This weekend, though, I called her and she didn't answer, so I texted her about something several times and got no response. This is the woman who lives with her phone attached to her so much so that the other siblings have nicknamed her "Texti".

 

I'm just sad about it, I guess. Any opinions would be welcomed.

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Hmm. I am also one of six siblings who have our ups and downs. But I don't believe there is anything that justifies "not being on speaking terms." I mean, that's just drama and making everything all about oneself IMO. We are all different! Why do we have expectations of each other beyond basic human courtesy? ... What to do? I am not sure, but what strikes me as an idea is to look for a meaningful passage you can quote and send it to ALL of your siblings at the same time, saying something like "this is how I feel." Something to the effect of the value of long-term relationship being more important than short-term "stuff." (Sorry, no great quotes come to mind at the moment.) ... Also, if you don't already do this, avoid all negative talk about any siblings. If someone starts in with the negative stuff, say something positive (but not argumentative). Just make it clear that you're going to stay above it all, no matter what. ... And don't worry if someone skips a holiday or two. That is no biggie in the great scheme of things. Just don't participate in the drama about it. Focus on the people who do show up and have a good time. Let it go. That's my advice. :)

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Let it go. Refuse to feed the fire - as someone stated above, when one sister starts talking trash about another, you need to just refuse to engage and stay positive. Enjoy your holiday celebrations with those who want to share them with you and your family.

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What a difficult mess...I'm coming to realize that you can only change how you react and behave with family. So many repeated patterns become expected and the cycle just goes around and around, while you struggle to keep up. Just do what you feel is the right thing to do and try not worry over fixing everyone. Easier said than done though.

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Thanks for the feedback and the advice.

 

I decided long ago that other people's relationships are between them and have nothing to do with me. Unfortunately, it seems this one sister is "punishing" me for the others' perceived crimes, and it hurts my feelings. Or, I did something something that irked her and I just don't know about it. Nothing I can do about that if she doesn't tell me, though. And she never would.

 

On the other hand, I'm not going to beg someone to have a relationship with me. They either will or they won't. It makes me sad, but I guess after giving it much thought and reading what you've had to say I suppose I'll just let it ride. There is so very much more to this story, but at the end of the day it's all a bunch of drama that I don't want any part of. I also fully suspect that the eldest is still calling the shots with this one, feeding her negativity, but....whatever. If she can't figure it out on her own at 53 years old there's nothing I can do to help with that.

 

Sad. Sigh.

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