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Old 06-11-2019, 10:57 PM #1
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Default Emotional Abuse Abounds

Is really the last thing I want to deal with right now.

Today I let one of our first cousin's really "have it" on Facebook, when she messaged me today a superficial apology -- disingenuous at best -- about why she never called me two weeks ago to offer me emotional support over the phone like I had asked her to: because she has higher up priorities.

Now, did my first cousin use those words? No, but the context of her annoying Facebook message BLARED that context loud and clear to me. So, I went off on her than later deleted my responses that both her older sisters (my two older first cousins) also read, b/c it was a group message.

Here's the gist of the message exchange:

Quote:
First cousin: She talked about how having four kids takes up her time, how all she wants to do is relax at home with a glass of wine and maybe if she has time she'll call me this week, and she's thinking of me and sending me her thoughts and prayers.

Context: Your emotional well-being during this crisis with your mother, my aunt, is not a high priority for me. It takes too much effort to call you, so I'll just hide behind my Facebook message wall, and send you my disingenuous thoughts and prayers because it's the thought that counts, right?

My response: Thanks for your glib response, first cousin. Thanks for letting me know how low on your totem pole of priorities I am. Next time, i won't ask you or your two sisters to reach out to me when I ask you to, for emotional support, now that i know none of you will. (She and my sister are very emotionally close like sisters, ironically enough and talk on the phone frequently).

Context: Your glib response to my frequent requests for phone calls, for emotional support, has shown me that you don't value or respect me enough to offer me genuine emotional support, during this emotional crisis of my mother having a stroke and her dementia growing worse, and how disruptive this has been to my life which is very unstable (no job, no place to live yet with 3 weeks to find a place to live or I'm literally homeless).
While I deleted my pretty angry response to her glib Facebook message, I know she and her two older sisters read it. I don't care as i"m so angry that they couldn't be bothered to call me when I asked them to, b/c I wanted some emotional support from my first cousins (the first cousins on my dad's side who live in my same city are silent on Facebook and haven't even responded to my updates about my mom's situation, so they're still the same assholes they've always been, and their lack of response doesn't even phase me as much as these other first cousins on my mom's side of my family bothers the hell out of me).

Emotional Abuse Abounds because how the hell can you be so glib to someone you're related to, who is clearly SUFFERING and in EMOTIONAL PAIN. Because you are just a *****? Maybe? Maybe.

All three of these first cousins have stable lives. My unstable life is not their fault and I don't blame them for my choices. But, what I want to hold them accountable for, is their lack of empathy -- real empathy. Real empathy to me, looks like this: your cousin expresses suffering and emotional pain about a current life situation and asks you to call them, so you call them, and you listen and you provide emotional support over the phone. Because you love them. Because you care.

Not these three first cousins. At least not with me. Maybe they don't like me and this is when it really shows up. That cousin I had the exchange with, I've never had a sisterly bond with like my sister has, but I thought we had a strong enough cousin-bond where asking her for emotional support was not an offensive request. Clearly, I was wrong.

Now, my sister caught wind of my Facebook posts and tried to invade my boundaries, by telling me I'm not allowed to feel the way that I do (angry, insulted, and frustrated) about how our first cousin glibly responded. Now, this is the SAME sister who told me last week, about our brother who has only provided financial support during this family crisis with our mother, refusing to visit her, or help us move her to her nursing home memory care apartment, my sister said of our brother, "He's allowed to feel the way he feels."

I JUST POSTED another post in another thread about how emotional abusers try to tell you how you should feel; try to tell you what you should think; try to tell you how you should act. My sister did the same thing tonight to me, trying to tell me that my emotional response to our first cousin was WRONG because it pissed off my first cousin who then told my sister, who loves our first cousin and respects her more than she respects me, so of course she is offended that I called out our cousin for responding so glibly to me.

I will NOT apologize for my emotional responses....to anyone! Ever!

I am allowed to feel what I do, when I do, how I do. No one is allowed to tell me how to feel, what to think, or how to act. No one!
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Old 06-11-2019, 11:19 PM #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StreetcarBlanche View Post

I am allowed to feel what I do, when I do, how I do. No one is allowed to tell me how to feel, what to think, or how to act. No one!
This! This is perfect, and absolutely the truth. Your feelings are valid and true, regardless of how someone else sees them, and you are allowed to feel however you feel, even if it doesn't make sense to the rest of the world. For what it's worth, I think you have the right to be mad. Your cousin's response seems dismissive, and during a hard time, that is the last thing you need to hear. I hope you have other people around you who are able to be there for you, in ways that you need right now. Take care of you, and ignore the a-holes.
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Old 06-11-2019, 11:39 PM #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by childofchaos831 View Post
This! This is perfect, and absolutely the truth. Your feelings are valid and true, regardless of how someone else sees them, and you are allowed to feel however you feel, even if it doesn't make sense to the rest of the world. For what it's worth, I think you have the right to be mad. Your cousin's response seems dismissive, and during a hard time, that is the last thing you need to hear. I hope you have other people around you who are able to be there for you, in ways that you need right now. Take care of you, and ignore the a-holes.
Dismissive! Yes! That's the correct adjective to describe my glib cousin's stupid Facebook message to me, that she wrote today. She was VERY dismissive, the way she talked about how busy her four children makes her life. WTF! You can take 5 minutes to call your cousin to offer emotional support, can't you? Nope, she can't, for me, apparently. For my sister, of course!

I don't have anyone. And I am not exaggerating that unfortunate fact. I lost my social networks of people when I stopped participating in Meetup groups about five years ago. And I was substitute teaching and never had any money, (an excuse, I realize now) so I stopped going to Meetups and lost all of the social connections I'd made.

So, I effed myself in that sense. I do have a lot of cousins here on my dad's side, but like I wrote in my OP, they don't want to be involved, and they want me kept at arm's length from them. If it were my sister or brother, they'd welcome them with open arms, however.

Both my sister and brother have their own families and have stable lives as well with jobs, sustained social networks of friends and acquaintances. Again, not their fault that my life choices led me to this path that I'm currently on. But I'm here, and I have to find a way off of it, and back on a path of stability with a full-time job, a roof over my head that is safe, and a social network of friends who like and respect me. None of that seems achievable when you're homeless. FYI.

So, if I can't find a place to live until my next grad school refund -- if I get my extension from my program director so that I won't fail out of my program only 2 courses in -- then in late August/September I get another refund when I register for a fall course. I just have to cover where I live, for July-August, and I found a Handbook of the Streets online, so I will just peruse that tomorrow and call and try to get my name on the waiting lists of shelters for women here in my city. I mean, what else can I do? I can go on craigslist, and try to find a roommate situation, but I don't want to pick the wrong situation because I'm in desperate circumstances.

My cousin's dismissive Facebook message just reminds me of the ****** people in this world, who have plenty of "thoughts and prayers" they offer online, but when push comes to shove, and they're required to show their hand of cards, they fold, or bluff and refuse to play. They refuse to follow through on their empty words when the person or situation asks them to. Pretty much my cousin to a T.
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Old 06-11-2019, 11:52 PM #4
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I'm sorry you don't have anyone to go to for support. That really sucks.

One thing I would like to say is take things one day at a time and just put one foot in front of the other. You can and will make it through this. You are strong enough to survive. Even if you are doing it out of spite, to show the people who haven't been there for you that you can do it, you are still doing it. One day at a time eventually will get you to that refund and you will be a little more comfortable. It just a matter of making the decisions that get you through the day and set you up for success.
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Old 06-12-2019, 01:08 AM #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by childofchaos831 View Post
I'm sorry you don't have anyone to go to for support. That really sucks.

One thing I would like to say is take things one day at a time and just put one foot in front of the other. You can and will make it through this. You are strong enough to survive. Even if you are doing it out of spite, to show the people who haven't been there for you that you can do it, you are still doing it. One day at a time eventually will get you to that refund and you will be a little more comfortable. It just a matter of making the decisions that get you through the day and set you up for success.
Yes, it sucks but like I said, I did it to myself based on my poor choices in the past. Oh well, the present is what matters.

I think a lot about how I haven't made much of an effort to make the decisions that get me through the day and set me up for success. I mean I thought I was doing that in years past, but clearly either really stink at setting myself up for success, or I must be sabotaging myself either consciously or unconsciously.

Could be related to losing my dad to cancer when I was 21 years old, and my mother not being very practical with regard to the way she made decisions for herself after she became a widow. So, my role models for how to set yourself up for success were non-existent at age 21 and beyond, or at least I didn't seek out new role models or if I did, the role models were terrible role models. Or, maybe that's me justifying my wrong choices to try to explain away the past. I don't know.

I definitely agree with you on the day by day concept. That's all I have the mental energy for right now; one day at a time. I will definitely try to succeed, even if it is out of spite to show my siblings and cousins that despite their disinterest in my well-being (either because I was a ***** to them, or who knows what they think of me or what I did to make them dislike me so much -- obv. I did something), that I deserve to be successful...at something...anything.

I'm 48 and tired of defending myself. I have to find a way to reframe my entire life in 3 weeks, so that I am not going to end up failing out of grad school, sleeping in my SUV, worrying about which shelter to drive to for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, in between going to workforce centers to apply for jobs, while I apply for transitional housing through the county. (Oh yes, I've been online reading up on how to survive being homeless where I live already, knowing I have family who can't stand me and won't help me who live in the same city.)

Thank you for your posts in my thread.
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Old 06-12-2019, 01:12 AM #6
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You are most welcome. I'm glad you're doing the research on how to make it through the next few weeks. It shows, to me at least, that you have the drive to do this. With enough motivation, anything is possible.
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Old 06-12-2019, 06:30 AM #7
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Its sad your brother and sister wont let you stay with them for a bit until you find a job. So a month on their couch would kill them or what. What a shame.
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Old 06-12-2019, 08:42 AM #8
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Its sad your brother and sister wont let you stay with them for a bit until you find a job. So a month on their couch would kill them or what. What a shame.
My brother's refusal I understand more because he and I are fundamentally different; he's a religious zealot who evangelizes God 24/7 and I'm an Atheist. He told me at our grandfather's funeral that 1) I was going to hell for not believing in God and 2) if I didn't move away from sitting next to him at the wake, he would take his butter knife and stab me. So, I probably should have prefaced that.

My sister's refusal is not so clear as she let me babysit her children, walk her dog, house sit for them when they go out of town as a family. She cites "boundaries" as the reason, without acknowledging the reason itself.

I worked out the financials and it will cost me about $3K of my student refund to stay in a cheap motel for the month of July. Not sure when my fall aid would be dispersed in August or September -- that is, if I am granted an extension for the summer course I am enrolled in now. If not, it won't matter and I'll really be up the creek without a paddle since I have no job right now.
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Old 06-12-2019, 10:22 AM #9
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Fellings are ALWAYS valid, StreetcarBlanche, and I'm so sorry that they didn't acknowledge it! They were certainly TERRIBLE to you! I completely agree with what all the other wise, wonderful posters have already wisely said better than I ever could! I hope your situation will improve soon and that you'll be able to find a job soon! I know it's not much and I wish I could do more to help you, but I'm here for you if you need support or if you just want to vent. Feel free to PM me anytime! My inbox is always open! Keep us updated about your situation if you can! Let us know if you're able to find something and if you need ANY HELP! I'm so sorry that none of your family members are being supportive of you and that they aren't even willing to provide support to one of the family! That certainly says a lot more about them than it does about you! I hope things will get better soon for you one way or another! Let us know how it goes! WE ALL CARE ABOUT YOU! THAT'S A PROMISE! Wish you the best of luck for your life and your future! Sending many safe, warm hugs to you, StreetcarBlanche!
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Old 06-17-2019, 11:19 AM #10
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I agree, your feelings are always valid.
People who are so dismissive rarely enjoy it if others dismiss THEIR feelings.
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