Here is something I recently wrote concerning my sister and me, and I feel grief. I know that I did what I needed to do. It still hurts.
It was just a couple of weeks ago when I sent my sister an email to ask that she not call me when she comes to my town ( 3 hours from hers) to do something other than to see me and then suddenly calls, expecting me to jump and run to wherever she is if I am to see her at all. I said that it is hard for me to jump and run without notice.
She got defensive, I tried to explain how I wanted her to consider my feelings and ask me before she decides to do things that affect me.. She didn't like it, and the more I tried to explain, the angrier she became. She is angry because I say she is controlling and bossy, and that I want her to stop. She denies being that way. We reached a deadlock. She said, "we are done" and "goodbye".
I have felt compelled to sit and list all of the hurtful things that she has done to me from as long as I can remember until now. I couldn't understand why, but I suppose I need to justify the feelings I have had even for my own self, even knowing the truth as I know it. But, what would I do with it when I was done? Use it against her in some way? Leave it for my children to read some day so they can hate her and maybe confront her children, their own cousins? Would it be good to leave this "curse" on my children? It is dry bones, and who cares?
I have to live life today and work on today, and I cannot let the hurts of the past destroy the "todays" I have left. I need to let this go and go on.
I think that I still know I have to write this, maybe, just for closure.
I was born 21/2 years sooner than she. Therefore, for as long as I can remember, she was there. Most of the time, I knew she hated me, and I had to take care of her anyway. Up until about ten years ago, she has been mostly awful to me. Some of it has also been in recent years, but mostly not, since she has settled down and gotten herself together- mostly since she has had Eddie.
I gave her the benefit of the doubt. I believed that mostly, she did not intend to be awful. I believed that she just only thought of herself, oblivious to anything except for whatever she wanted or needed. Most of the times, she didn't realize she was being selfish or controlling. Therefore, I believed that our tainted relationship was also my fault for not saying how I feel or standing up for myself. I excused her for being human because I have plenty of faults of my own.
I tried to let things go and just kept forgiving her for hurting me and things as they happened. But, most things were never confronted, and she didn't know how I felt. She did not know of any offense if it was just an instance of being selfish or unfair. However, I am sure she was aware of the things she did on purpose when she did them, but she doesn't know I know about some things she did to me.
Whenever I did confront issues, we argued, and nothing was ever resolved. I do know that she usually got mad at me and made me pay by staying mad for months at a time. I can remember when she was genuinely sorry for only one thing, but mostly she is never sorry. Over time, I stopped telling her how I felt or standing up for myself. I always knew that we could not have a relationship at all unless I always bended and conformed to whatever it was that she wanted. I chose battles wisely because I wanted to get along. I am suddenly realizing that she trained me to let her do as she pleased however her decisions affected me.
In recent years, maybe for the last ten, she has done some wonderful and amazing things to help me. Five of these years, Jeremy and I have lived in Springfield, so distance has been my personal boundary. She has done all that she can to show that she loves me. She has gone beyond wonderful, sometimes. It was puzzling. I always think that this was possibly due to guilt, and just trying to make up for things she knew she had done. Still, I sometimes feel the jealousy or resentment coming from her like always. As she recently said of me, I think it is true of her-"you don't really love or even like me, but I understand that you try."
All I wanted was a good relationship where I could say what I need and how I feel and that she would respect that. I thought it might be possible, now.
I thought that I forgave her for the times she hurt me throughout most of our lives, and I am not sure that I did because as soon as she hurts me again, all of it starts shooting up like lava from my soul. I remember things today that were dead and buried many years ago.
When things are never confronted and resolved, how do you truly forgive? The person did not even ask for forgiveness. I asked God to help me to forgive. But, these things still hide in the shadows of my heart. Nothing truly healed, but the "splinters" are still festering in there, surrounded by pockets of infection beneath the smooth skin. I ignore them and live for today. I forgive! I forgive my sister for being human and making mistakes as I have also done in different ways than she.
I hoped for a healthy friendship where everyone's feelings matter. So, I confronted her on recent things because she wanted examples of things she had done that were controlling. I used current issues to show her ways that she treads over my feelings and told her what I want and need today. I told her I need her to respect and consider my feelings-"Today". She, at first, denies any offense and then, later, says that my feelings are not justified. She does not truly apologize for anything, but brings up all the good she had done in recent years "to prove she is not controlling", and sarcastically says she is sorry. In this way, she minimizes my right to feel the way I feel. It was just to say that I am easily and unjustly offended. She gets angry and wants nothing to do with me any more.
This proves to me that the only way to have any relationship with her is to continue to be compliant. I will not do that, so there it is. It is hard to believe that this is for the best. I can't fix it now. We are done. What have I really lost?
We cannot have a healthy relationship or even a real friendship, so what is there-- only a lifetime of memories- some precious- and the bonds of having a sister. I still love her. I don't hate her and don't want to hurt her.
We just don't have to associate because she just proved to me that we cannot get along unless I continue being a "pleaser". I refuse.
When you tell a person some way they have hurt you, and they deny it, minimize the importance of it, or act like something is wrong with you because you don't like what they did to you, there can be no resolution, can there? They are not sorry. Even God does not forgive you unless you sincerely ask Him to and are truly sorry. Yet, when we harbor resentment, we poison ourselves. I think that all I can do now is let this go and go on with my life without my sister in it. I will honor her decision. In fact, I will enforce it.
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