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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-09-2009, 02:08 PM Thread Starter
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Ever wonder why you ended up with the family you have?

Okay, I'll start off by saying that the immediate family I grew up with (mom, dad and brother) is very dysfunctional to say the least. Mom and dad have been divorced for about 10 years now and my brother only talks to any of us when he needs something.

Mom sold her car about a week ago to a young college-age girl whose parents go to the same church. What mom didn't realize is that she should have kept the license plates from the car before handing over the keys. It's been 5 days and this girl still hasn't gone to the DMV and transferred the title and still has mom's plates, basically meaning that if something were to happen to that car the DMV thinks she still owns it.

Mom asked me what to do about it and I really didn't know; never had a situation like that before. Then she tried calling my dad (they're still "sort of" on speaking terms ) and also tried calling my brother, neither of whom answered. Both of them are famous for looking at their caller ID and won't answer if they don't feel like talking to the person. So mom calls me back and askes me to try dad's number to see if he'll answer for me. I tried his house, his work # and his cell and got nothing. About 20 minutes later he calls and says "did you want something?" and I told him mom has been trying to get a hold of him. Also, about an hour later my brother called my mom and in a bad tone asks what she wants and says, "you know, it is late." Whatever! He doesn't know what late is. It's just one of his excuses because he didn't want to talk to her. Mom told him "why don't you think about that the next time you want me to bail you out of jail at 3 o'clock in the morning."

So then mom comes over here on her lunch break today and completely blows up at me. I I'm the one who takes everything because I'm the only one who will try and stay on decent terms with everyone without ruffling feathers. Now she's PO'd at dad and my brother over this situation and says "I don't even want to come over for Easter if they're going to be here." Previous to this, they've always gotten along well enough at holidays for my sake and my kids' sake. Well, if I don't have my dad over here (whom my kids absolutely worship - what kid doesn't swoon over Grandpa?) then my kids won't understand and they'll be hurt. Furthermore, my screwed up relatives are the only ones my kids have. Hubby is an only child, his mom passed away last year, and all of his next-generation relatives don't even bother to talk to him hardly at all. I have tons of cousins on my side of the family but they all have families of their own now and will be spending the holiday with their parents/children.

This is so messed up! How do I make this a decent holiday for my family, trying to include everyone for the sake of the kids, without there being a 3-ring circus?

Oh, another thing, too - there is this young gal at our church whose husband is going to be away over Easter and I would like to invite her over for a meal with us but I don't want her to have to be witness to this bunch I have to call family.

I got upset with my mom for putting me in the middle of the situation again and told her I didn't know if I wanted to do anything for the holidays and maybe we would just go to one of the many restaurant buffets, which I honestly don't want to do for 2 reasons - buffet food isn't always the best and my two 4-year-old kids would probably have a fit having to wait as long as we would in line for one of these places.

Any advise, please start chatting away. Thanks!
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-09-2009, 02:20 PM
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Re: Ever wonder why you ended up with the family you have?

I would just have Grandpa and the woman from church over. Grandpa for the kids and the woman for you guys to talk to.

You can't keep getting in the middle of all of these things as it is only going to make you nuts, and the others are not going to ever change. Trust me, I have been there!

I have always thought that my Mother spent time with the Milk Man when I was conceived since I am so different from all of my siblings and my Mother. Of course my theory gets shot in the foot when you find out that I am just like my Father (which by the way is why I am the black sheep).


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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-09-2009, 02:31 PM
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Re: Ever wonder why you ended up with the family you have?

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Ever wonder why you ended up with the family you have?
Oh, I'm sure I was being punished for something...

What a stinkin' mess! And one your kids don't deserve to be privvy to. How about you throw your hands in the air and tell everyone it is Fend-For-Yourself-Easter this year and you do your own thing with your husband, kids and guest from church?
Play board games and have a BLAST without having to worry about familial tensions!
Well, excluding the immediate family may not do much for relieveing any family problems and it could create even more problems. I'd say to do what you usually do and if they are experiencing any problems and can't keep themselves polite in front of your children, they can be invited to leave. Well, that wasn't particularly helpful, either. Sorry. Best scenario would be to have the holiday in someone else's house so if things got too heated, you could always leave with the kids. Hard to do that in your own home.

Mom, Dad and Bro are going to have to work out their own problems. My Sister lives with our Mother to help care for her, but Sis and her son and ex-husband are a constant source of anxiety/irritation for Mom. Mom vents to me, so I just listen. There is nothing I can do until Mom makes a move, then I can back her up. I can't do anything for her or to my sister, I live 3k miles away.
Tell your Mom to go get her plates off that car and complete whatever needs completing at DMV. She can call that girl and tell her she forgot them and needs to have them. Right now. Then Mom, Dad and Bro are going to have to work out their own issues, but tell them Easter day/meal is NOT the place for that particular discussion, so zip it.

My apologies, I am in a lot of pain today and my inner Snark is putting in a command performance today. I'm think I'm going to sort of sit this one out...



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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-09-2009, 02:34 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Ever wonder why you ended up with the family you have?

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Originally Posted by Leazie
You can't keep getting in the middle of all of these things as it is only going to make you nuts, and the others are not going to ever change. Trust me, I have been there!
That's the thing, though. I'm never willingly in the middle of any of this. It's my mom who keeps dragging me into the middle of everything. I can't tell you how many times I've told her to stop it because I will not be forced to pick one over the other. You have no idea what I'm up against (or maybe you do) but there is absolutely no reasoning with her. Plus, she gets all flustered and she's trying to argue 5 different points to different situations all at once. She's one of these who keeps drudging up the past EVERY time something happens. She can't just forget it and put it aside.

As far as my dad and his personal things, I don't hear one bit of it. He could be remarried right now with a girlfriend on the side (not that he'd actually do that) and I'd never know it. He doesn't talk personal life or drag me into arguments and I don't ask.

My brother knows more than enough not to come to me with his junk either. We're just not an open bunch of people.

I would love to do what you said about having dad and that gal from church but then the kids would keep asking why Grandma isn't here. Grrrr! Sometimes I just want to go into hiding somewhere!

What's most important to me is that I'm trying to raise my kids in as "normal" an environment as possible. I have really gotten involved with my church and activities within and sometimes I just wish that my church family was the only one I had, although I'm smart enough to know that absolutely everyone has skeletons in their closet and nothing is a complete bed of roses no matter how it looks on the outside.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-09-2009, 04:25 PM
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Re: Ever wonder why you ended up with the family you have?

Are your kids young/adorable/energetic enough to completely distract their grandparents so there's a hope that even with no other intervention things will go well? At my sister's house there's always so much going on with two 18 month old kids that no one has time to think about their personal issues, much less bring them up and voice them. You could also give your kids enough sugar to make them so crazy that Grandma and Grandpa will be running for their lives and have to work together to survive the day!

If not, how about talking to your parents and your brother ahead of time and reminding them that this is a family holiday and the kids will want to see all of them, but they have to keep things nice or the kids will be very upset.

And if they don't think they can play nice for sure, have a blender, straws and some nice strong gauze wrapping handy. When everyone gets there, you can tell them that if they can't be nice to each other you're going to wrap their heads in gauze to keep their mouths shut, then stick Easter dinner in the blender and they get to drink it through a straw while the kids laugh at them and eat with forks and knives.

~Diana, happy mom to Fern and Fergie
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-09-2009, 04:43 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Ever wonder why you ended up with the family you have?

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You could also give your kids enough sugar to make them so crazy that Grandma and Grandpa will be running for their lives and have to work together to survive the day!
No, no, no, no, no! Have you ever seen your niece and nephew come down from a sugar high? That's almost worse than the actual high itself! By the time that would happen, we'd be the only ones left here to deal with it.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-09-2009, 06:39 PM
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Re: Ever wonder why you ended up with the family you have?

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Originally Posted by 2kids3cats4me
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Originally Posted by WhiteKitties
You could also give your kids enough sugar to make them so crazy that Grandma and Grandpa will be running for their lives and have to work together to survive the day!
No, no, no, no, no! Have you ever seen your niece and nephew come down from a sugar high? That's almost worse than the actual high itself! By the time that would happen, we'd be the only ones left here to deal with it.
Actually, Evie barfs within 3 seconds of any sugar hitting her tongue, so for now she and her brother simply don't get any. Too bad we can't patent that reaction - the family would be rich!

~Diana, happy mom to Fern and Fergie
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-09-2009, 11:31 PM
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Re: Ever wonder why you ended up with the family you have?

Jo, what a time of year for family bickering. I like White Kitties' answer. I would be tempted to tell my family that Christ will be the center of your day on Easter, and having a happy day for your children will take priority over their bickering. Those who agree are welcome to visit, but nothing is going to spoil this sacred and happy holiday! Those who can't recognize that can stay home and eat pb and j's.




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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-09-2009, 11:40 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Ever wonder why you ended up with the family you have?

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Jo, what a time of year for family bickering.
Yeah, it seems like stuff like this always creeps up around the holidays. I will have time to think about this over the next day and decide how tactfully to handle this. Thanks!
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