Fixed By Christmas

I’m so frustrated. 

My mom called me this morning. We stuck to the initial small talk, “you still picking up the girls from school?” “Yeah,” and then she throws out the, “we need to talk.”

“Oh?”

“About what happened between your brother and your husband.”

Groan. 

Just when I thought I got out of having to discuss it with her. 

The conversation went pretty much like I figured it would. She was offended that my husband would come into their house and threaten her son. 

I told her he was sticking up for me. She told me that if she threatened him every time he emotionally abused me that she’d be over at my house every other day. 

Now, she never said that my brother was completely innocent, but it sure as hell felt like that’s what she was saying. Trying to justify what he did by saying that I already knew how upset he was when I had gone down stairs to bother him some more. Which I didn’t. He seemed annoyed to me, and normally between us, when one is annoyed, the other pushes his/her buttons. We’re antagonistic, which is usually meant in the spirit of good fun. Usually. 

Until my brother completely snaps and loses his goddam mind in a furious rage, unbeknownst to me, then suddenly I’m the fucking idiot. 

You know what I’ve come to realize? 

I don’t really like my brother, as a person. I love him out of familial obligation, but I think that’s as far as it goes. I’ve tried to be close to him, I’ve tried to ask him to make time for me, to hang out together, but he can’t commit to plans ‘in case something comes up.’ 

Plans change, life gets in the way, so he just won’t commit to spending time together. Fine. 

My dad says there’s always an undercurrent of anger and resentment stemming from the shit I did to him when he was a kid and that when I antagonize him it brings it all to the surface. For real?! All I have to say to that is GET THE FUCK OVER IT. Honestly. You know, I’m a grown woman with three kids and family all of my own, I have enough stress in my life that I don’t need to fuel it from the shit of the past. 

Anyway, the conversation with my mom was really upsetting because my mom made it sound like it was fine that he shoved me because I wasn’t innocent in antagonizing him and I was in his face. I wouldn’t get out of the way and that’s why he shoved me, he just wanted to be left alone. 

I tried to tell her that he could have said that, that he wanted to be left alone, or that he was mad. I would have left him alone. But he didn’t talk to me. He didn’t even afford me the courtesy of any type of communication. 

“You knew he was mad when you chased him down the stairs with the kids,”

I didn’t know he was mad. I knew he was annoyed. Yeah, I was trying to bug him, not send him into an aneurysm of violent rage. 

When it’s all in good fun, we really antagonize each other. And we’re both really good at it. And I don’t know where that leaves us.

My mom told me that it wasn’t fair that I only told my husband my side of the story, and that when he went to speak to my brother he didn’t let him give his side of the story. I told her that my husband, more than anyone, knows I’m not entirely innocent and I tried to give him the full story without embellishing because, well, it doesn’t need embellishing because it’s so ridiculous!

She also said to me that she remembers when I told her that I like to tell a story from my perspective to make it more epic. 

Which she remembered completely out of context. Yeah, when I’m telling an epic story I may embellish a little, but I don’t flat out lie about it, and I don’t do that when I’m trying to tell my side of an argument! I even said in my blog, and to my husband, that I know I’m not completely innocent. I was definitely trying to bug my brother. I just wasn’t trying to evoke his anger.

I told her that it really sucks that again, my dad will ‘have a talk’ with my brother about his actions and that’s the end of it. No apologies. No repercussions. Silence. 

He had no right to shove me. He had no right to call me a fucking idiot and then tell me that it’s not even worth explaining to me why I’m a fucking idiot because I’m just a fucking idiot. 

“I want this fixed by Christmas.”

Sure thing, mom. 

My mom also told me that my dad is so annoyed at the whole situation that he doesn’t even want to have any more family dinners at their house. He was also annoyed to find out that my mom and I (previous to the argument with my brother) agreed that I would sleep over there next weekend so we could do some Christmas baking. Yeah, because I feel like doing that now. Fuck. 

How am I supposed to fix this? 

I’m probably going to sit down with my brother and inform him that I don’t like him. Nothing personal, but what’s to like? Whenever I see him he’s either on his way to being drunk, or high, or enraged. He doesn’t bring anything of value to my life. He stresses me out and annoys the fuck out of me. 

Which still begs the question, why is it alright for him to get physical with me? 

It’s not. At all. And I don’t know how to make him understand that. 

I remember one time when my sister came home from college, and it was just the three of us sitting in the basement watching television and goofing around. We were poking each other, tickling each other, just being silly. Having fun. I poked my brother in the nostril and he stood up and fucking lost his mind. 

He started yelling about how easy it would be to kill me, to fucking slap me across the face and there would be absolutely nothing I could do about it. There would be no way I could stop him from physically hurting me. He went on like that for a while then stormed off. 

I can’t say I was totally shocked, we were really getting on each other’s nerves. But the vehement anger that seethed from him seemed really out of context within the situation. I’m sure my sister could weigh in on the extent of me getting on his nerves. I just feel like it goes both ways. He annoys the shit out of me, but I never get enraged like he does. 

Also, that time when he tripped me when I was pregnant. I remember there was little to no repercussions for him from that. I don’t think my dad really believed me that my brother actually hooked his foot around my legs and shoved me. He thinks I’m embellishing, but I’m not. I cried and told my mother, who told my father, who had a talk with my brother. I think he might have apologized, but it was forced and not because he genuinely meant it. 

And so my mother wonders how I can put up with the crap that my husband does/says to me when we’re fighting. 

This whole situation is just so frustrating. 

The conversation ended with her saying that it was not alright for my husband to come into her house and threaten my brother without even giving him a chance to give his side of the story. She said he could have at least asked my brother to go outside.

And of course, she wants it fixed by Christmas.

Edited to Add an Update to Dysfunctional Sibling Rivalry

In relation to my previous post, Dysfunctional Sibling Rivalry, my husband was out tonight while all this stuff happened. He called when he was on his way home and asked me to tell him a story. I told him about what happened with my brother. He told me he’d see me at home.

My husband came home and played on his computer while me and my oldest daughter were watching some television. When she went up to bed, while still staring at his computer screen, my husband nonchalantly mentions that he stopped by my family’s place to talk to my brother. My jaw practically hit the floor.

I guess he went down to the basement where my brother was passed out and turned off the television and woke him up. He told him that he knows I can be annoying as shit, and that sometimes he’ll want to strangle me, but it’s no excuse for what he did. I guess my brother tried to mumble some excuse about there being so much confusion in the house with all the kids and the noise, and my husband told him to shut up.

“I don’t want to hear it.”

He told my brother that something like this would never happen again, and if it did, he would regret it. He didn’t get into detail, he just said what needed to be said. He wished my brother a good evening and left.

I can’t believe  my husband stood up for me like that! I told my sister and she was definitely impressed, but wondered why he doesn’t stand up for me in our relationship. Perhaps a whole new can of worms to dissect at a later date.

I have to say, I’m definitely very grateful that my husband stood up for me. It meant the world to me. I think it beats the ‘conversation’ or whatever, that my dad had with brother, where they most likely discussed the situation but didn’t decide on any kind of resolution.

I’m pleasantly surprised.

I’m also very curious to see how my brother will react to me the next time we bump into each other.

Dysfunctional Sibling Rivalry

Today was my grandmother’s 77th birthday. She’s real old. And a little batty, but I love her. Obviously.

The woman practically raised me while my mom was working outside of the house.

As soon as I got to my mom’s house, my brother started running his mouth at me. Pushing my buttons, as brothers are wont to do. I asked him to stop because I’m afraid I might be starting a cold sore and the last thing I need is more stress. Obviously because I asked him to stop he kept going. I don’t even remember what he was saying, just stupid brother shit. 

Later, after my mom and I had made a bunch of chicken for dinner, as per granny’s request, I went downstairs to hang out with the kids and my brother. We were goofing around, and everything was fine. 

I went back upstairs to finish tidying up. Mom was getting the rest of dinner ready. The kids were playing around going up and down the stairs. My brother was getting annoyed, I guess. But i told the kids to get him. We chased him back downstairs and he ran into the bathroom so we (me and the two little ones) kept banging on the bathroom door. I thought we were being hilarious. I thought we were all just goofing around.

Suddenly, my brother comes out of the bathroom and shoved me, with both hands, and almost knocked me over. He looked really pissed. 

“Whoa, what’s the problem?” I asked him. I had no idea why he was so angry, and all of sudden, too. 

“You’re a fucking idiot.” He told me, like it was a matter of fact. 

I was so shocked that he said it. I didn’t even know what to say. How do you respond when you’re own brother shoves you, pretty violently, then tells you you’re a fucking idiot? 

I kept trying to get him to tell me why I’m a fucking idiot but he said it wasn’t even worth explaining to me. Luckily the kids had gone back upstairs at this point, because he kept telling me to get the fuck away from him. 

I did what any insulted and angry sister would do; I sat next to him. Part of me wanted to know if he would actually hit me. The other part of me wanted to annoy the fuck out of him because I was still so stunned that his mood had taken such a drastic turn. 

What is his fucking problem? 

I went upstairs and told my mom and just shrugged and said she didn’t know what to tell me. I went into the bathroom and cried. I messaged my sister.

Me: I’m so upset right now!

Sister: whats going on?

Me: 

Brother got really mad and shoved me, then told me that I’m a fucking idiot…and I have NO idea why! I wasn’t even near him because I’ve been upstairs cooking all afternoon!!

I asked him why I’m an idiot and he said that it doesn’t matter and its just not worth telling me why I’m a fucking idiot…
 
Sister: wtf?
 
Me: This isn’t one of those times where I instigated something and now he’s retaliating, this literally, for me, came out of no where
 
Sister: 

NO idea at all??

man he’s so fucked with the way he deals with emotions!!
 
Me: He’s been on my case all day since I got here and I told him I think I might be getting a cold sore so lay off and of course he thrives on being a pest and kept going, half an hour ago we were sitting on te couch watching a movie and he started tickling my knees and I was screaming and we were goofing around and it was all good
Then he stormed out of the bathroom hall and shoved me, pretty hard too, and told me that I’m a fucking idiot. Mom just shrugged and said she didn’t know what to tell me. I fucking hate him. Now I just feel fucking anxious and nervous like I’m going to puke. And I don’t even know why!?!?!?
 
Sister: don’t you think its pretty scary that he seems to think its ok to assault you?
 
Me: Yes. The last time it happened is when I was pregnant
 
Sister: 

like when you were pregnant too

Boyfriend said thats pretty psychopathic behaviour

 you should leave the house

you can’t tolerate that

 thats really fucked up
 
Me: And go where!? I don’t have the car and we’re about to have supper

 I don’t know what to do..
 
Sister: call a cab, take the kids, take a bus

 if family thinks its ok to treat you like that, why do you tolerate it?
 seriously, Boyfriend was like, holy fuck she should have pressed charges
 (about the pregnancy thing)
you need to estrange yourrself from him, Boyfriend doesnt understand why you tolerate it… why does everyone tolerate it??
thats not a loving relationship
 
Me: Nope, it’s not, mom sent dad to talk to him, I’ve already estranged myself from him. He’s a dipshit. Talk more later, I love you! Crying on granny’s birthday..she changed the place settings so I don’t have to sit beside him
 
Sister: i’m so sorry sister 
 
In reference to what my brother did to me while I was pregnant, he got really mad at me for something (I still have no idea why) and he hooked his leg around my legs and shoved me from behind. If I hadn’t grappled the counter, I have no idea what would have happened. I was 7 months pregnant. It unnerved me so much. I mean, that was my baby! 
 
I remember one time when my sister was visiting from university and the 3 of us were downstairs watching television. I was definitely irritating my brother (as he was irritating me) and we were goofing around and then he snapped. He got up and threatened to slap me across the face, and got more and more descriptive about how he was going to kill me, and that I better sleep with one eye open. Part of me was terrified, the other part of me thought it was funny. Honestly, who gets THAT mad?! 
 
I guess, as an answer to my sister’s question of why I tolerate it, I don’t know. I don’t know what I’m supposed to do, or how I’m supposed to react. I could never physically attack him back, not that I condone violence anyway. Talking to him doesn’t work because he just tells me to fuck off. Giving him space doesn’t work because then there is ZERO repercussion to his actions and he’ll act like nothing happened. 
 
We don’t get together as a family very often for dinner (except holidays) and I would have felt terrible leaving with the kids on granny’s birthday. God only knows how many birthdays she has left, I just didn’t feel justified in any way to leave.
 
When I came out of the bathroom in tears my mom went and told my dad that my brother’s behaviour is unacceptable and that he should go speak to him. 
Which did, as I expected, absolutely fuck all. Brother and dad came in the house after having a smoke and we avoided each other for the rest of the night. There was no apology, no resolution, nothing. 
 
It turns out that he was pissed because he was trying to watch a television show and the kids were making too much noise. He never once mentioned to me that he was upset, or that he was trying to watch television. My mom said that he had no right to be angry either because he knew we were all over there to celebrate granny’s birthday. 
 
I still don’t even know what I’m supposed to do. I guess I can just keep my distance from him. It’s not hard since he doesn’t really make an effort to be close with me anyway. He really is a rage-aholic. This guy has serious issues that need to be dealt with. I know I don’t always make things easy, but I never think I provoke him to the degree of anger that he goes to. Maybe I do. Maybe I tolerate all the shit that happens to me because I think I deserve it. I know I’m a button pusher, even when I’m not trying to push buttons. 
 
My dad drove me and the kids home and we talked a bit about it in the car. My dad’s trying to tell me that there’s an undercurrent of past transgressions that he still harbours resentment for that happened when we were growing up. All I could think was, GET THE FUCK OVER IT. I have 3 kids now, and a whole grown up life of my own, I don’t care that when we were in high school I had a couple of parties that got out of hand and that ruined his partying forever more at my parents house. Or whatever other shit he’s caught up on. Ugh. Apparently that’s part of the problem too, that I don’t care. 
 
Dysfunctional. 

The Other Shoe

I just read my last post, prior to the one I just posted (The Purge) and I guess I’ve left you hanging.

I went back to him. I’m still with my husband. It was a hard choice to go back, but we’ve gone to counseling. Things right now are going well, but I don’t anticipate they’ll stay that way for long. Living with him is like walking on egg shells. A few weeks ago it was so bad that I was actually looking for a place to live. Unfortunately I don’t have enough money to make it on my own.

How can you love someone so much, but know that they’re not right for you?

I was telling my husband about a plan I had to make our house a little nicer. I want to redo the front hall and I have some inexpensive ideas. I was just tossing them around, trying to see what he thought.

“I think it’s a stupid idea.”

“What part of it is stupid?”

“The idea itself is fine, it’s just stupid because it’s your idea.”

He actually said that me.

He’s been harbouring resentment that, from the spring, I maxed out a $6000 credit card that he never knew I had. Yeah, I know that’s not cool. I broke his trust.

He’s hurt me too much, he’s broken my trust.

Now we’re trying to rebuild that trust, but I don’t know how to get it back.

As I said, we’re alright for now. I’m just waiting for the other shoe to drop, as it always does.

The Purge

I’m feeling restless. My skin is crawling with anticipation, but I don’t know what it is exactly, that I’m anticipating. 
The Zombie Apocalypse? Vampires? I wish. 

I’m hooked on the Vampire Diaries. It’s feeding that nostalgic, teen-angst-ridden, part of me that I thought I had grown out of. I’m so glad I’m back. I’m swooning over the main antagonist,  Damon Salvatore. And by swooning, I mean obsessed. 

This show is fuelling my obsession with romance and unrequited love. I believe that heartbreak is good for the soul. The show is very character driven, which adds to the intensity of the way I feel. 

I haven’t really felt like this in a while and truthfully, I’ve missed it. 

Hooray for obsession! 

I wish I would write more. I wish I didn’t wait so long to write between entries. I like the purge writing brings, the catharsis. I almost bought a new journal today. I have no money, and I definitely don’t need another journal. It was beautiful, leather-bound and expensive. I think of all the journals I’ve owned, and I’ve owned quite a few, I’ve only ever finished one. I have so many half-started journals that it seems like a waste to buy a new one. However, a new journal, to me, is like a new start. It represents a new beginning, with a new intention of journaling ever day. But I don’t. I’ll write a page or two, maybe seven or eight, and then I just…stop. 

I texted a friend and asked her what she thought. She told me I should keep going with this blog. And it’s true, I should. I hope I’ll keep going. Keep writing. Keep purging. 

It was a good call, and I didn’t end up buying the journal (that I couldn’t afford anyway).

 

True Colours

Let the shit show begin.

More and more is happening every day and it never stops breaking my heart. 

Yesterday my husband put a block on my phone. I couldn’t text, phone call, internet. I don’t understand why he did it, either since that means he’ll have to call my parents house phone, which he hasn’t done yet. 

Luckily my mom took me to the store and set me up under her account with a new phone number. He’s trying to control me. To intimidate me into moving back in. 

I went to see a counselor today. It was supposed to be the counselor for the kids, but he told me that since I already have the trust and rapport with my kids, he will counsel them through me. 

He asked a lot about the relationship of me and my husband. He said it’s best not to add fuel to the fire, and to look at what I’m doing that might fuel it, so that I can take a step back. 

You could tell he’s seen this kind of thing before, where one parent lashes out because they’re angry. 

Earlier today, when I went to pick up our son, my mother was with me and we didn’t even look at each other. I picked up the cat too, which broke my heart. We’re giving her to someone who can look after her for now. 

I mentioned to my husband that I would be finding arrangements for the dog, but I needed a couple of days. He said, “it better be quick.” My mother was horrified. 

My mother stepped out of the house with our son, and he looked at me and asked, “do you really want to go through with all of this?” 

I told him that I was willing, but he wasn’t willing to give me the time. “Besides, I’ve seen your true colours, and I don’t like them very much.” 

“Fine.”

I’m going to see a lawyer tomorrow. 

After the appointment, I realized I hadn’t really eaten much today, so I went to my favourite shawarma place. I was the only one there, besides the guys that work there. I sat at the back feeling like the loneliest person in the world. I left when I started to tear up. 

I decided to pick up the girls from school early, so I could talk with their bus driver. He’s a really nice guy, and he’s been through the ringer himself, and has been a really good listener. On the way to the school, I tried to force myself to listen to a sad song that I really love. Halo, by Beyonce. I broke down and started weeping in the car. I held out until the song was over half over, though, so go me. 

I’m so sad. All he wants to do is talk, and all I want to do is wait until we can see a counselor. I’m so tired of fighting, of being cut down by him. My soul hurts. He’s my best friend and I don’t trust him not to hurt me. 

He called my mother’s house twice today while I was out, but my mother didn’t answer. I called him back to see what’s going on. 

“So this is it? You won’t even talk to me? We can’t hang out? We can’t even talk?” 

I honestly didn’t know what to say.

“You know you’re holding all the cards, there’s nothing I can do, I’m squirming because you’re giving me nothing, and you’re alright with that?”

“Yes.”

“Then I guess I’m seeing your true colours.”

There was nothing left to say. I know he’s hurting, but damnit, so am I. I’m giving him nothing because I have nothing left to give. He’s stripped it away.

Part of me wants to talk to him, but the other part of me is too scared.

I don’t even know what to do anymore. I’m so hurt. And I know he’s so hurt. We’re both hurting and neither of us knows how to fix this. I don’t think I even want to fix this anymore.

I’m so tired. 

 

 

The Bottom Line: Revised

Things seem to be degenerating pretty quickly. 

My husband asked me when I planned on coming home. I told him that when I felt safe, I would come home.

“Well how long will that be?”

“I don’t know, but it will be a while,”

“How long is a while? Because I won’t wait forever.”

“I’m not asking you to wait forever. I’m asking you to wait until I feel like I’ll be safe, when I know we won’t fall back into the same cycle again,”

“When will that be?”

“I don’t know.”

“Just give me a time,”

“…end of April.”

“I won’t wait that long. I deserve better than having to wait for you, for waiting for someone who always makes me wait.”

We talked a few more times during the day, but it essentially boiled down to me telling him I wasn’t coming back until I felt safe from the way he hurts me, him asking, “what about the ways you hurt me?” and finally him telling me that he would be contacting a lawyer to pursue a divorce. 

Seriously? He won’t wait until the end of April? He’s never been a patient person, but this is ridiculous. If this could be the life-line that could save our marriage, he’d rather have a divorce? What nonsense. 

I was supposed to bring the kids over tonight for them to sleepover. He has tomorrow off and I figured this would be a good time for him to spend some quality time with the kids. He got annoyed with me because he thought I was going to be there for dinner (due to the argument we had last night, and again this morning, I decided I didn’t need to put myself in a position where I needed to stay for dinner.) It escalated into him telling me not to bother bringing the kids at all because he wanted to be left alone. 

“Please don’t do this to the kids,” I begged him.

“I’m not doing this to the kids, you’re doing this to the kids.”

I honestly didn’t even know what to say. He seems to be more upset that I’m not at the house than anything else. I still don’t think he realizes that his actions and behaviour towards me forced me to leave to preserve myself.

If I ever found out my son was treating someone the way his father treats me, I would be horrified. If I ever found out someone was treating either of my little girls the way he treats me, I would kill them. 

I will not have my kids growing up thinking that it’s ok to treat people like this. It’s not. I’m not even sure that I can identify what it was in me that  snapped, but some part of me is refusing to be put through this anymore and I’m holding on for dear life. 

This conversation left me with such guilt. What was I supposed to tell the kids? “Daddy and I had a fight about you guys and now he doesn’t want to see you.” 

Yeah, right. 

I felt bad, even though I know it’s not my fault. I still feel bad, and I think it’s from some misplaced sense of wanting to take care of him. He, perhaps, has given me the best advice of all: “sometimes you just have to harden your heart.” 

Thank you for the advice husband, I think I’ll take it. 

The bottom line is, I love him. I will always love him. I tried to give him the chance to help fix this, but he prefers to lay all the blame at my feet for leaving, without taking into consideration the reason behind why I left. He hurt me so badly that I felt leaving him was the best option. He’s mad and petty. 

So be it. If he wants to be a selfish baby, let him. I’m tired of dealing with it. 

Let’s see what tomorrow brings.