Why Do Family Members Hurt You So Badly Sometimes? Long....sorry
Moms View Message Board: General Discussion: Archive November 2006:
Why Do Family Members Hurt You So Badly Sometimes? Long....sorry
Two weeks ago, my DD, DGD and I drove 7 hours to attend my sister's wedding. It was a second marriage for my sister. She has been with the guy twelve years, and finally got him to marry her. She is always so tightly wound anyway, and very insecure. It is all about appearances with her. (I just expect people to take me as I am).
When we got there in the late afternoon, my sister told me where the key was and we let ourselves in until she got home. My DGD is 22 months old and my sister's house is definitely NOT baby-proofed. She had all these animal figurines, and animal pillows all over the living room. Well, of course, DGD went right for them and lined up all the animal pillows on the floor. Then she went for the figurines, so one by one, DD and I took them from her and put them up on the kitchen table. Then she took some small brass cats and was banging them in a cut crystal bowl that she had on her coffee table, so up they went as well. Well, my brother-in-law-to-be had been out hunting and came home, looked at the stuff on the table, and curtly said, "What's all this stuff?". Not "Hello", or "I'm glad that you came" or "I'm glad that you had a safe trip". Then he made some comment about how we had "every light in the house on". Then my sister came home. We are lucky if we see each other once a year. She didn't hug DD (her niece) or me. She had a real "burr under her saddle". I was ready to get in the car and go back home. The next day, DD and I took the baby out for a walk and my sister pointed out that "one" of us tracked "mud blobs" on her stairs.
The wedding was in the living room, and there was cheese and crackers, wine and wedding cake afterward. Then, instead of a dinner, everybody went to a benefit dinner for Rich's brother-in-law who is on the organ transplant list for a lung transplant. We all paid for our own dinner, in addition to giving them a wedding gift. My sister and her new husband didn't even sit at the table with us, the only FAMILY she had there. Thank goodness, though, we sat with her neighbors, who are the dearest people, and we have exchanged email addresses. If it weren't for them, we would have felt very out of place.
Also, my sister is suddenly into horses (one of her many "incarnations" over the years), and is friendly with the girl who owns the stable where she boards them. The girl was nice enough to come over the night before and help us make wedding favours. Well, as a surprise, she brought one of the horses, hooked to a buggy with flowers and a "Just Married" sign on the back to take the newlyweds for a ride for pictures after the ceremony.
Well, my sister called me tonight and was complaining that she didn't know "what else could have gone wrong" until her friend brought the horse and buggy. (It was a surprise, and I thought it was a lovely one). She complained about how long the horse had to be tied to the clotheline pole during the ceremony (and the horse was very patient, I might add). How she "pictured" the horse pulling the clotheline pole out of the ground. Then I told her that I was a little put off by Rich's reaction to the breakable items on the table. (Some had been my Mom's and Grandma's so they had sentimental value). She said, "Well, I had been cleaning since Wednesday and wanted everything just so. I had no idea that Megan had no boundaries and apparently hasn't been told "no" enough". I was PO'd!!! Then she told me that Rich hasn't been able to find his glass case since our visit.
My DH tried to tell me that I was wasting my time going up there, but she is my only sister, and it was a happy occassion. I wanted to celebrate with her. I had no idea that we would be treated so badly. Maybe I should have just let everything get broken rather than move it.
The only bright spot of the trip was that she gave my DD a beautiful diamond ring that had been our Grandma's. Our Mom had had it, and when Mom went into the nursing home, my sister went in to Mom's house and took everything that she wanted before the house was sold, and I was allowed to pick out what was left. I looked around her house and saw things that had always been a part of our childhood home and I had never been asked if I wanted any of it. My Mom is still in the nursing home and I know that she doesn't know that my sister is giving away her stuff. My DD offered the ring to me and said that if I wanted it, I could have it. However, I told her to keep it because she'd get it eventually anyway, when I am gone. This way I can see her enjoy it. When it comes down to it, though, my sister has no right to be giving ANYTHING of my Mom's away while she is still living.
I know that I didn't feel well the whole weekend I was up there, so maybe I was more oversensitive than usual. Howver, I have always believed that family and love come before material things, appearances, and status. It was a very informal wedding, and if something had not gone as she planned, it might have been comical (like America's Funniest Videos. LOL!)
As much as I'd like to see my Mom again (she's 86), I'm not sure that I will go up there again anytime soon, and if I do, I will stay in a motel. Am I just being a crybaby?
I've never understood why some people choose to look at the negatives all the time, nor why some people think it's OK to be rude and nasty to family when they would never be so rude to a stranger - but that is surely your sister.
If it were me, I'd feel sorry for her because clearly she takes more aggravation than joy from life (her choice, clearly) - and I'd stay in a motel. I don't see any reason why you should deprive yourself of seeing your Mom just because you got the "nice" in the family and your sister didn't. And if your sister comments, you can just respond that you didn't want to upset her household again, since she complained so much about it at the wedding. It's a shame you didn't just stay in a motel this time.
Family, BTDT too many times to count. But I must say you took the words out of my mouth and mind when u said you should have just let everything get broken.
And the comment about the glass case, excuse me but wasn't the wedding in the house so others attended the wedding too. Not to say that anyone took anything, but that it was obviously moved, maybe even by her, since everything had to be a certain way.
Thats your sister and I know you love her dearly,just like me and my youngest aunt, I'm the only child my mother is deceased so you would think that my aunt would like having me around, but I get those comments just like that , but she wnats to run to my house every weekend and stay her and her kids and husband and ruin my hooue. I've woke up , and I've nipped that in the bud. She now knows that she has to call and ask to come over don't just invite yourself, but I stay away as much as possiable. Next Thursday (turkey day)can't gethere fast enough so that I can get the dinner over and done with so that she can leave.
No, you are not being a crybaby. I understand that they were probably nervous about the wedding, but it is still no reason to act like j*rks. Sorry, but that is how I feel. I feel so bad that you had to go through that. Your feelings are validated as far as I'm concerned. (((((hugs)))))
I'm so sorry that you were treated that way. That is just awful and by your own sister too. And I agree, do still visit your mother, and I would stay in a hotel. I feel bad too for you, hol I am sorry you, and dd your mad to feel that way. I wouldn't go again that's for sure.
Thank you all! As usual, you are there for me. Ginny, you are so right about her not treating strangers that way. As I said, my sister is real insecure, and therefore, is always trying to elevate her status. And, truth be told, I never saw a more reluctant bridegroom than Rich. He has been married and divorced twice and once told my DH that he'd NEVER do that again. She moved in with him twelve years ago, lock, stock and barrel, with two teenagers, two dogs and four cats. He has two grown, married sons, as well. My niece and nephew have since grown up and gone. Rich found out that he has a tumour on his lung from 38 years of working in a place that is an OSHA nightmare, so he has to medically retire. Since he is now, basically uninsurable to get private health insurance, she conned him into going on her health insurance, but in the state where they live, you can't insure domestic partners, just spouses. And, of course, it doesn't hurt that he has a designated pension plan that he has paid into all these years that can only go to a spouse if he should die. You can't leave it to your kids because it is totally company paid. If he died and had no spouse, it would go back to the company. She wasn't about to let that happen. She lobbied to get him to put her name on the house, too, but he has (rightfully) willed it to his kids.
I started venting to DH tonight about my visit. He vents to me about his job and I just listen. He started in with, "I TOLD you not to go up there". I started to cry. I told him that I really didn't need a comment from him. I just wanted to vent.
Thank you, Ginny, for saying that I got the "nice" in the family. That's a lovely thing to say. I always have valued my loved ones over what anyone thought.
We didn't stay in a motel because, after paying for gas to get there, lunches up and back, giving them a wedding gift, and buying our own dinners at the benefit, the trip was expensive enough. As far as the missing glass case, it was one of those free ones you get at the eye doctor with a pair of glasses. I would have been embarrassed to mention that to anyone if it had been me.
I am a sensitive person, but I have lived long enough to have been hurt by many. However, she is my only sister, and I just expected more, I guess.
Thank you all, again.
Your sis sounds EXACTLY like my aunt, my mom's only sister. When my grandparents died (22 years ago, 8 months apart) my aunt, who has lived in a different state for the past 33 years, went through my grandparent's house and picked over everything that she wanted, and then left the rest to my mom to take care of. My mom, who cared for my grandparents every day for the last 3 years of their lives, was left to be the executor of the estate. It was almost too much for her to bear, and she sold the house with most of the contents still in it.
My aunt is also very emotionally unstable. Her unhealthy marriage of 23 years ended in divorce and then dove right into another unhealthy relationship and was remarried within months. She came to visit with her husband last year, and I couldn't believe how cold they were to eachother.
My mom's heart aches for her sis, but she has been insecure and flighty all their lives. Always in need of attention and acting out, always drama.
Ginny is right- you definitely shouldn't give your sis so much power over you that she prevents you from seeing your dear mom. Hang in there.
Just want to add, Hol, that what's happening is your sister's loss - she has lost sight of something that truly matters in life - a loving FAMILY. It seems material things have become more important to her, and perhaps it's due to an insecurity on her part. Regardless, she's the one who loses in the end. I'm sorry you've been hurt, but be proud that you are who you are, and happy you haven't become the person she is.
Thank you again. There is so much about my sister that I have had to overlook. I guess the thing that bothers me the most is how she uses people to get what she wants. She was divorced when her kids were 9 and 7. She had to. Her ex was physically abusive to her and the kids. He punched her in the face once right in front of his mother. She hung in as long as she could, but either she or the kids would have been dead if she had stayed. She tried to hide it from my Dad, who had terminal cancer, and waited until after Dad passed in 1985, to leave her ex. However, Dad knew what was going on.
She had it tough for many years, raising the kids alone and working two jobs. We stopped to see her once on our way home from visiting DD in Michigan, and she had no heat. Her gas had been turned off and her apartment was freezing. Of course, because of her need to impress, it was because she bought an expensive winter coat instead of paying her bill. Another time, her refrigerator died and her landlord didn't provide appliances. She had no money then, either, so she kept her food outside in a Coleman cooler. She had no credit to buy another one because she ran her Kaufman's charge off the charts and they reported her to the credit bureau. My Mom bailed her out more than once, but she wouldn't use the money for what it was intended. Mom sent her money once because she told her that her gas and electric would be shut off, then she used the money to buy a computer.
She went from man to man, even dating a married man at one point, something that I, personally, cannot condone at all. She finally latched on to this guy. They live in a beautiful, rural area, and he has a nice home and LOTS of land. (He grew up there. She ended up there because her ex had taken a job there). As I said before, it didn't take long before she weaseled her way into his home. Then, she would start referring to "her" house, and "her" hot tub, etc. She kept telling us that HE wanted to get married, but it wasn't happening, and he was telling people otherwise. When he got sick and had to retire, That was just the opportunity that she had been looking for. He is paying a HIGH price for health insurance. I don't know if he realizes it yet or not.
When it became obvious, two years ago, that Mom couldn't stay in her home anymore, she swooped right into that, too. Mom lived in the same state as I do, but my sister made all the arrangements to take Mom to a nursing home near her. She called a realtor, sold the house in a week, and cleaned out everything she wanted. She took Mom to the nursing home and didn't even give my DD or me a chance to say good bye. I was told the weekend before the closing to go to the house and take what I wanted. I had a real problem with doing that, picking through Mom's things while she was still alive. Now, she's parceling Mom's few valuables off to people, like the ring she gave my DD, and Mom doesn't even know.
One of the reasons that I wanted to make this trip, and after I told DH last night, he understood, was to have some sort of closure with Mom. I had had no chance to say good bye. Mom is like a little kid now and just does what my sister tells her to do. (I guess I really couldn't believe, too, that he was finally marrying her, and had to see it for myself. LOL!)
My sister admitted that, one of the first things she did was get Mom registered to vote in her state. That way, when Mom's money runs out (this nursing home's cost is outrageous, if she can be believed), she will be eligible for state assistance to keep her there. The women in our family are known to live past ninety. She TOLD me that she gave her daughter money for a down-payment on a house, and like I said, she herself has just bought two horses. Not bad for someone who couldn't afford a refrigerator just a few years ago.
I know that it sounds like major sour grapes on my part that she has Mom's money, but nothing could be farther from the truth. I am a simple person, and I have never needed or wanted diamond rings or oriental carpeting. My DH has provided very well for me over the years. It just bothers me to see how she takes advantage of people, and acts like it's all good.
I am rambling, and I don't mean to. It's just that you all are really the only ones that take the time to listen to me and understand. You guys are the best.
I'm so sorry about your sister, Hol. It sure seems like you are so different from her! And I understand about the need to vent and just have someone listen. I get the same type of response from my dh if I try to talk to him about my family. He always says, "Then why do you call them?"(LOL)
Hugs to you. How are you feeling this weekend? It sounded like you weren't feeling physically well last weekend. Hope you are better.
Hol, you know I think your sister was out of line - and that's the way she is. She's not going to change, and it sounds like you've accepted that. Yes, she's had a rough life, and that's a shame. But not everyone who's had a rough life turns out to be petty and more concerned about things than people. That was her choice. You love your sister, but really, you don't have to like her, or at least you don't have to like her when she behaves badly.
Your sister is right, by the way, to register Mom to vote in order to have her legally a resident of the state she is living in now. All nursing homes are very costly, and good nursing homes even more so. That's just a fact of life. Unless a person or family is wealthy enough to be able to pay anywhere from $2,500 to $4,000 a month indefinitely, sooner or later the money is going to run out, and it will be necessary to apply for Medicaid (the state run program that pays, among other things, for nursing home care). I hope your sister is smart enough to not try to play any games with the money from selling mom's house, because I think with the current rules, Medicaid can look back five years to make sure no money or assets that belonged to the nursing home resident were diverted to a famiily member. But I'm sure she knows the rules.
As for your dh, this is another case of "there are two kinds of people". Some people, when they hear a problem, want to fix it - problem solvers. Most of them are men. Others, when they hear a problem, want to offer comfort and a listening ear. Most of them are women. I happen to be a "problem solver" by nature, and it has taken me most of my 67 years to learn to listen first and not offer a solution (most of the time) unless one is asked for. And my mind still immediately starts turning to solutions even when all the other person wants is to vent. Maybe you can explain to dh, when things are calm, that sometimes you just want to vent to a sympathetic ear and get a pat on the back and an "I'm sorry that happened to you". And promise him that the next time you just want to vent and get some comfort, you'll warn him, up front, that you are venting and just want him to listen.
As for your sister's husband - whatever their "deal" is, they made it and they have to live with it. Thank goodness it's not your problem. Sounds to me like they are both paying a high price - remember, your sister will have to nurse and care for her husband if he gets ill. So, he gets health insurance, she gets the pension, and the kids get the house and probably most of the other stuff. If they think it's a fair deal, then it is. Problem is with people like you describe, both of them probably spend a lot of time and energy feeling cheated. But, it's not your problem - and aren't you glad?
Thank you again. Nicki, your DH sounds JUST like mine!! If I complain about my sister, he says, "well when she calls, you sit and talk to her and laugh, etc." Well, yeah....what am I supposed to do? Life is too short to have animosity. That's why I've always put up with her crap. DH's family spent their lives with a grudge against someone, and could write people off. They are all passed now. I pray they have finally found peace.
Ginny - As usual, you have great insight. Yes, I do know that that is the way that she is, and I've accepted it, but it doesn't keep me from wishing that things were different.
$2,500.00 to $4,000.00 a month for a nursing home? Try $10,000.00 a month!! That's what my sister is telling me anyway. I saw the place, and while it is nice and doesn't have that "nursing home smell" at all, that seems outreageous to me. And, yes, I know that Medicaid picks up the tab after the patient's funds are exhausted. However, it isn't fair to the taxpayers to fund my Mom's care because my sister has squandered all of her money on horses, her duaghter's house, and, did I mention that she has also recently bought rental property to use as passive income? She didn't have the money for any of this until Mom went into the nursing home. Like I said before, I am not jealous or resentful that she has Mom's money. It's just that Mom did without things to save for her "old age", and I think that even she is being deceived about how much it really costs to keep her there.
I think $10,000 a month is a lot more than I would expect. You can, if you wish, find out by calling the nursing home and asking them what their charges are, without identifying yourself as the child of a resident. As for your sis maybe buying those things with mom's money, well, what goes around comes around in cases like that. If sis applies for Medicaid for mom before the "deeming" period is over, the state will audit the financial records for the deeming period, which I believe is now 5 years, and anything that was improperly transferred by Medicaid rules will be deemed to still be available to pay for mom's nursing home care. If there is a question of sis using the money in that way without mom's knowledge or permission, or a question of whether mom was capable of giving knowing consent at that time, then the state will require sis to cough it up. Which could be very messy.
And, if your dear mother dies before this becomes an issue, you could always legally demand an accounting because sis may have been spending what would have been part of your mother's estate and therefore, ordinarily, split between you and your sister. But that's a whole other can of worms, and you'd have to decide whether to open it.
On page 9 of this pdf file, it says that the average monthly cost in 2005 of nursing home care is between $5,300 and $6,175 depending on type of room. (2005)
I agree with Ginny, that you need to do a little fact-finding on your own. I smell a rat, and it isn't pretty!
Big hugs, Hol.. I am of the mind that Family just isn't what it use to be.. I can feel for you..
Thanks, all. Those are some great ideas. I may just do some calling. The area is Rochester, NY and the cost of living there is certainly cheaper than here, and no nursing home that I know of here charges that much.
Ginny, my sister was very shrewd. (I'm telling you, she has it down to a science).One of the first things, besides registering to vote, that she had Mom do was hook her up with a financial planner. This financial planner said that my mother had been very "unwise" in her investments, because she relied on CD's to generate interest income. (Mom is a very careful person, and the stock market scared her). Then, she (sis) had herself listed as co-owner of everything. Then, she had a lawyer come in and draw up a new will, and power of attorney, making herself my mother's conservator. NOW, she told me last weekend that she had Mom sign a health care proxy with a "DNR" (do not resucitate). She has made comments like, "Mon is going to live forever. S**t!". This disgusts and saddens me.
Mom had a chance to stay here in RI near me. I had taken her to the doctor because of some major health issues, and she ended up being admitted to the hospital that same day. From there, the doctor ordered two weeks in rehab. The bed that they found for her was in a lovely country setting, and the staff was so wonderful to her. However, she checked herself out AMA (against medical advice), and had her neighbor pick her up behind my back. I was driving on the highway to see her, and I got a call from the nursing staff saying that she had left.
Six months later, when she had another bad bout with her crippling arthritis, she just let my sister march right in and she reverted to a child-like state. I wanted nothing more than to keep her here in RI, close to me. It was the only place that she had ever known. She misses RI and wanted to vote by absentee ballot in RI. However, she couldn't because my sister made her a citizen of New York state.
My sister is good (in a bad way) of spotting a situation to better herself by someone else's hard work.
Ginny, doesn't the law read that if soeone else is named as co-owner on assets, then the state can only take half the assets as compensation, i.e. the nursing home resident's half. I know that, here in RI, if a patient goes on Medicare, the spouse gets to stay in the house and the assets aren't recouped until the patient dies, and then only half, if the property was co-owned.
Hol, a spouse and an adult child are two different things. And the deeming period still prevails. I checked the NY rules and the deeming period is indeed 5 years. Those who qualify for the exemption are a spouse, a minor or blind or disabled child, a brother or sister who owns half the home and lived there for at least one year before the transfer, or an adult child who lived there for 2 years prior to the transfer AND provided care to the nursing home resident. Here's the link: NY Medicaid
So basically, if your sister tries to qualify Mom for Medicaid assistance for nursing home care before the 5 year period ends, they will do a "look back". She may have done it with a lawyer, but I strongly doubt that the lawyer can overcome the rules. (I looked into this very thoroughly when my parents came to live with me and made me their trustee.) Basically, sis had better hope mom lives more than 5 years (or, sadly, dies before the money runs out). One of the issues, of course, is that if Mom lives more than 5 years, does the nursing home where she is living accept Medicare? That's another question to ask if you decide to do some checking.
If your mom was mentally competent by legal standards at the time the transfer was made, she was perfectly able, legally, to transfer or give away her property to anyone she chose. And it would be very difficult now, after the fact, to prove she was not competent at the time the transfer was made and the legal documents signed. The only person who could raise the issue with any chance of success would be your mother, and she'd have to get her own lawyer and battle with your sister. I tend to doubt that is something your mom is going to want to do.
Ginny - Bless your heart for doing all that research for me! Thank you. I guess I have been more upset about all this since my visit to NY and actually seeing Mom in that setting, after she had a nice home. She did very well to stay on her own there for twenty years after Dad died. My DH has never liked my sister. He says that she is, among other things, a schemer. I've always known that she is, too, but it is easier for him to be objective. She has always been very materialistic and status conscious, but it was hard to be because she had nothing for most of her life. We didn't have a lot growing up, but I've never regretted it because it made me resourceful. I know how to sew, mend, and make food and money stretch. I always cut everyone's hair (I even used to perm my OWN) even before I went to hairdressing school. I have never given a rat's behind what anyone thought of me. I have always been clean and neat and have tried to make myself look as nice as I could, but it has been for ME, not anyone else. I've never thought much about money and God has always provided oppportunities for DH and I to have gainful employment to get what we need. I am very much like my Dad in that regard.
My Mom spent her life being like my sister, constantly trying to be in a social station that she wasn't. Impressing people was always very important to her. Sis is like her. I know that it is borne of deep insecurity. Ironically, she (Mom) did a similar thing when my Grandma died. Grandma had been married twice, and her second husband was very wealthy. My step-Grandpa had one daughter around the same age as my Mom. I don't know what arrangements he made for his daughter upon his passing, but I do know that the bulk of his estate went to my Grandma. Mom had one brother. After Grandpa died, Mom took HER mother to a lawyer and set Grandma's funds up in a trust so that my uncle couldn't get any of it. Her home had been sold and she was in an apartment near my Mom. Mom used the excuse that she had to isolate Grandma's money, or her brother would "breeze through it" and leave Grandma destitute. She made sure that she was the sole trustee and that everything deferred to her upon Grandma's passing. It cost her her relationship with her brother. He told me that my Mom was "obsessed with money". Well, she went to all that trouble for nothing because my Uncle Tom died tragically BEFORE my Grandma. And when he passed, he and Mom weren't speaking. I am determined NOT to have that happen with Sis and I. I told DH that what is happening seems to be karma in action, but I still hate to see Mom being deceived. After seeing the facility that Mom is in, it just seems that she could have done better by Mom, ESPECIALLY if she is truly paying $10,000.00 per month. She has a small room with a bureau, desk and TV from her home. She also has a lift chair that looks like a recliner that is her own. However, on the other side of this small room is a frail, comatose woman who is on hospice. It is very crowded. The home that I had help finding for Mom here in RI was very spacious and bright, and each roomate had plenty of room. My DH tells me not to feel sorry for her because she made her choice when she checked herself out of the facility in RI. Again, he can be more objective.
In the meantime, Sis is living it up, bragging how this was the first year that she hired a landscaper to take care of "her" lawn (actually Rich's lawn). She now owns investment property, her daughter bought a house shortly after Mom moved up there, and, as I said before, Sis has bought two horses and pays to board them as well. She told my DH on the phone one night that she has "worked hard all my life, and now I am going to have the things that I want". She and I were recently talking about church budgets and how many churches are having trouble paying the bills because people aren't renewing their pledges. She said, "Well, I have always felt that church was a 'pay as you go proposition anyway. If you get something out of it, you give". So much for sustained support.
I could call the nursing home and inquire about the monthly rates, but if it is confirmed for me that she is lying to everyone, I will just get MORE upset and it would appear that the situation is out of my hands now. However, as has already been demonstrated, karma sometimes "comes around" quicker than we think.
Well. It really is a "what goes around comes around world". Sounds like what your sis is doing is exactly what your mom modeled for her. And aren't you glad that you didn't turn out like your mother.
I think you are making the right choice - accept that the situation is out of your hands and try to stop fretting about it. You have a dh who is supportive and caring, your children and your grandchild, and, from the way you talk about yourself, a good life. So enjoy what you have, and know that what your sister and mother do is really not your problem. Your dh is right - your mom made her choice and she chose to go with the daughter who is, sadly, most like her.
I do think the situation is out of your hands. I strongly suspect that at this point - with the lawyer having drawn up all sorts of papers and your mom having signed them (and they have almost certainly been witnessed and notarized to the hilt) - the only entity that could have any success in overturning them is Medicaid, and then only if mom lives more than 5 years from when the papers were signed and sis applies for Medicaid assistance for mom. If the application for Medicaid is made before the end of the 5 years (and I am sure the lawyer has told sis about this), that program will do an audit and examine all the legal documents. But if mom dies before Medicaid gets involved or sis spends Mom's money on mom for the 5 year deeming period, for you to try to make any claim would almost certainly be very costly and likely unsuccessful. So, leave it to karma, and do what you need to do for yourself to maintain a relationship with your mom and sis that you can live with.
Basically, Hol, you have a good life, one that you and dh have made for yourselves and your children, and you have the wisdom to step back and see that trying to get involved in this situation would only make you unhappy and angry. So, go with your wise instincts.
One of my favorite quotes is something to the effect of...you can only control yourself.
You have to just accept people are different, your sis is different than you. It isn't necessarily wrong what she did, just maybe not nice. Those things are different.
I am in the middle of a similar situation. There are times it gets to me and I think it sure sucks. But most of the time, I realize my hurt feelings are about things, and really things don't matter that much to me...you can't take them with you.
Sorry you are going through this.
Thank you again, Ginny and Kaye. I am sorry, too, Kaye that you are going through the same thing. It isn't pleasant and can be downright frustrating and upsetting. And, yes, life has taught me, too, that the only thing that we can control is how we react to what happens to us.
I also feel like you do, that "things" are just that...things. Something that just becomes a burden to someone else when you are gone. People have lost all their "things" in an instant through fire, hurricanes, tornadoes, etc. but they go on. It isn't the "things" at all that bother me. It's just that I don't feel that Mom is getting a fair shake, and I detest people who are not honest. Also, Sis will call me once a week, usually on Tuesday nights after she has been to the nursing home, to complain about Mom to me. They both made their choices. I just want to live my life in peace and harmony.
You could try saying to your sister - look, if you are just calling to complain about mom, I don't want to spend my time that way. Tell me about some good things that are happening in your life and I'll tell you what's happening in my life.
If you say that enough times, maybe she'll get the message ... or stop calling on Tuesday nights. Either way, you come out ahead.
Ginny- I haven't heard much from Sis since I came back on November 6th. Just that one call where she complained about her friend bringing the horse and buggy. However, I got this thank you note from her today that made me laugh my butt off.
"Thank you for your generous gift. It was thoughtful but BEING TOGETHER WAS ENOUGH (caps mine). Bob and boys, thanks for allowing Holly to come and share my special day.
Thanks again. I will always remember November 4, 2006 and the FAMILY MEMBERS who helped to make it so very special".
Puleeze!!! Family members who "messed up her house" and with whom she didn't even sit at the benefit dinner.