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Old 01-12-2015, 09:22 AM
 
15,568 posts, read 18,747,269 times
Reputation: 25875

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Quote:
Originally Posted by otterhere View Post
You guys are wearing me out here.

MY SIL is never home; not that she works, but she's constantly either shopping -- compulsively (is also a hoarder) -- or hanging out with her two daughters (helicopter parent, as I mentioned), so I doubt if she missed my brother much for a few hours a day (he's home the rest of the time, as he barely works either; the other MIL has financially supported them throughout their marriage). She has never objected to him associating with us, and if I WERE out to create some fiction as to how terrible she is, I'd certainly have thrown "isolating him from his family" in for good measure. She simply just wants nothing to do with us herself and wants her children to know and love only one side of the family -- hers. As for my brother, he suffers from depression and anxiety, for which he has actually been hospitalized, which is why I give him a pass; he can't help having a mental illness that renders him unable to tolerate conflict and contention.

Next? Fending off skepticism is becoming tedious. Do you automatically assume that "something is off" with every poster on this forum, defaulting to the assumption that the person is falsifying information presented?

At any rate, thanks to you few in the minority who sympathized and even empathized. I appreciated that.
You don't like your SIL and she doesn't like you and the reasons for that don't really matter. Under the circumstances, it's unrealistic to expect her daughter to like you, either.

Just let it go and spend time with people you do like and who like you in return.
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Old 01-12-2015, 10:16 AM
 
3,394 posts, read 3,706,443 times
Reputation: 9289
She probably friended you on Facebook out of curiosity, wondering what that side of the family was like.

Some people also accept every friend request they get, without even bothering to see who it is. They just want to rack up their "Friend Count".

I would guess your situation falls under one of these categories.

It would be fun if you were very wealthy and could entice her with expensive gifts, meals and trips just to annoy the SIL, wouldn't it?
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Old 01-12-2015, 10:45 AM
 
20,077 posts, read 6,450,923 times
Reputation: 11407
Otterhere, I understand what you are going through, my friend. I've recently had a situation with my only living blood relative (brother) and his family. Sometimes there aren't two sides to every story. Some people can be selfish and uncaring, through no fault of yours. I'm sorry you are going through this. It is heartbreaking, to say the least. I live with that heartbreak every day. Hugs to you.
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Old 01-12-2015, 01:56 PM
 
16,140 posts, read 22,801,224 times
Reputation: 26715
I think you and your parents were too passive while those kids were small. Seriously.....I would have been showing up occasionally....like a GrandMa should....Now it seems like you never even made an effort.....and even though your neice at least tried to friend you on FB....You are still holding her accountable for your feelings...Jealous....IMO it should be guilt.
Call your niece up, invite her to lunch, dinner, or just to come hang out with you. Share rather than envy her joy. Be the hero! Before it is too late. If you will, and you give it some honest efforts, you might in time build a real relationship....
Blaming your SIL can only go so far.
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Old 01-12-2015, 02:52 PM
 
7,756 posts, read 14,726,056 times
Reputation: 10408
Quote:
Originally Posted by otterhere View Post
You guys are wearing me out here.

MY SIL is never home; not that she works, but she's constantly either shopping -- compulsively (is also a hoarder) -- or hanging out with her two daughters (helicopter parent, as I mentioned), so I doubt if she missed my brother much for a few hours a day (he's home the rest of the time, as he barely works either; the other MIL has financially supported them throughout their marriage). She has never objected to him associating with us, and if I WERE out to create some fiction as to how terrible she is, I'd certainly have thrown "isolating him from his family" in for good measure. She simply just wants nothing to do with us herself and wants her children to know and love only one side of the family -- hers. As for my brother, he suffers from depression and anxiety, for which he has actually been hospitalized, which is why I give him a pass; he can't help having a mental illness that renders him unable to tolerate conflict and contention.

Next? Fending off skepticism is becoming tedious. Do you automatically assume that "something is off" with every poster on this forum, defaulting to the assumption that the person is falsifying information presented?

At any rate, thanks to you few in the minority who sympathized and even empathized. I appreciated that.
And there we have it, the what that is off...

If you had said in the OP that your brother suffers from a mental disease, has been hospitalized for his condition and cannot handle stressful events, your brother would've not even been the topic heavily focused on. There's a huge difference between saying my brother is mentally ill vs my brother is really passive. You kept emphasizing: he's "passive", "goes along to get along", "terrified of conflict" (something about rather walking through rakes and coals), "wife wears the pants"---> All of these gives a different impression and allows for assumption of what posters would apply for a (mostly healthy, mental-wise) NORMAL guy. Nobody would've blame a guy who has a mental illness. This information actually changes the whole deal.

Your SIL does very well sound like she would have a mental illness herself. A very unhealthy situation to be in, to be around of and to grow up in. I do feel very sorry, it's a sad situation, no doubt.
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Old 01-12-2015, 03:30 PM
 
16,140 posts, read 22,801,224 times
Reputation: 26715
Quote:
Originally Posted by veuvegirl View Post
It's a tough situation for sure. She has no idea your side of the story. Sending her gifts isn't going to open up a relationship. If you want one with her you need to figure out a way to approach her without being negative towards your SIL. Even with your SIL blocking the relationship 20 years is a long time to finally make a go at getting to know your niece.
OP I sense that the you need some support for grieving...That the issues with SIL, while perhaps valid, are more pronounced because of the grief and loss of your Mother.

I agree with others. Since your brother did maintain a relationship with you, and your Mother, you do still have that. Unless you are saying things out of hurt and anger to him like I'm seeing you say to strangers on this forum who are offering suggestions, that won't change.

I also think your brother was remiss in not bringing the children to visit, since he came anyway. But, that is a discussion perhaps between you and he, later when you are emotionally less raw.

I personally think that if you start some attending a support group for grief and loss, it will help. That should be your focus right now....That is why you are feeling more vulnerable at this time....and why these old hurts seem more on the surface. Putting some healthy emotional healing into place will help you to deal with this separation issue in a more positive way eventually.

If your niece posting her daily life and happy events hurts you so much, then just choose to not receive her notifications....That is easy to do....

I would not delete her, or unfriend her...In fact, if it were me, I'd "like" some of her posts....and I'd post some comments etc....You may be surprised how some time will heal, and perhaps even begin a relationship between you and she. But, choosing to disengage totally form your niece is no different than what you are complaining about what her mother has done, disengaging all those years ago.

Life is about choices.....Choose a different path, for a different outcome. But, do seek grief support.

Here are a few links that I hope will help. Peace be with you. I am sorry for your loss.

Online Grief Support, Help for Coping with Loss | Beyond Indigo Forums
Coping with Grief and Loss: Understanding the Grieving Process
GriefNet.org - Grace Happens
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Old 01-20-2015, 10:45 AM
 
12,891 posts, read 7,154,169 times
Reputation: 21064
Thanks for the HELPFUL posts.

As for my parents, they had their own problems to deal with, and my mother was unable to drive (therefore, she couldn't just "drop in"; as I pointed out, SIL and kids were seldom home, anyway; they were either at her mother's or compulsively shopping). Once they were older, my father was deceased and my mother was blind and in poor health, so "holiday parties" were quite limited on our side of the family.

Most responders here seem determined to blame us, one way or another, for this situation, which I find...interesting. Some might appreciate my reluctance to air my brother's private issues, however anonymously, and I'm frankly puzzled why my SIL's and my relationship became the primary topic of this lengthy thread. As for bereavement, the fact that I was my mother's hands-on caregiver for years leaves me with no regrets (although I may be suffering from a form of PTSD), and I've also done my "grief work" since her passing. Finally, I am sustained by my Christian faith. Is it great to find myself a virtual orphan now? No, but it is what it is (and always has been as far as these people are concerned).

Perhaps I should've posted under "Facebook Etiquette," as the only real question is: what to do when a relative "friends" you and then ignores you? I now know that there's an "unfollow" feature. If she ever wants an actual relationship with me, she knows how to reach me. Clearly, this wasn't the right time for that (and I AM quite well off, so it's her loss)...
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Old 01-20-2015, 10:49 AM
 
12,891 posts, read 7,154,169 times
Reputation: 21064
.
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Old 01-20-2015, 12:23 PM
 
12,891 posts, read 7,154,169 times
Reputation: 21064
Quote:
Originally Posted by JanND View Post
I think you and your parents were too passive while those kids were small. Seriously.....I would have been showing up occasionally....like a GrandMa should....Now it seems like you never even made an effort.....and even though your neice at least tried to friend you on FB....You are still holding her accountable for your feelings...Jealous....IMO it should be guilt.
Call your niece up, invite her to lunch, dinner, or just to come hang out with you. Share rather than envy her joy. Be the hero! Before it is too late. If you will, and you give it some honest efforts, you might in time build a real relationship....
Blaming your SIL can only go so far.
FYI: I certainly don't "envy her joy." She's a very lucky girl, and I'm happy for her. Where do you get that; because I'm single and childless? I've been in long-term hetero relationships, and both my marital status and childlessness are entirely by choice. "Jealous" doesn't apply here. Tough crowd, as I say...

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Old 01-28-2015, 03:14 PM
 
27,803 posts, read 58,678,699 times
Reputation: 22459
Closed upon Original Poster Request
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