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Jealousy: not sure how to deal with it

(57 Posts)
TheUglyDuckling Fri 22-Feb-13 19:42:44

I'm 10 weeks pregnant with dc3. In the past ten years I've been through an horrific marriage, a difficult divorce, basically haven't had an easy time of it. But now I have a lovely dp, we're getting married in a couple of months and we are incredibly happy.

So. My sister, got married last year, is late 30s and finally got pregnant back in November. I am so happy for her, she has no dcs and desperately wanted them, and I really hoped this was something that we'd be able to bond over.

Dp and I had already decided to try for a baby (I'm early 30s) and fell pregnant straight away. I've had previous mc, and already had bleeds and been rushed to epu this time round, but all is ok so far.

We told close family early on because I needed dm to look after the dcs when I went to hospital. My db happened to be there so called dsis to tell her so that she didn't feel she found out later. All seemed fine. Everyone happy, all good.

At ds1's birthday tea I tried to talk to her about baby stuff, tests etc, and she just told me a friend of hers recommends certain ones. End of discussion. Just cut off the conversation. I thought nothing of it. Hormones or something.

But since then it's continued. She called dm whilst I was sat next to her to discuss a pregnancy related issue. Dm asked me, I gave the answer (had it myself), dm asks if she wants to talk to me. She refuses and ignores my answer.

Dm and sil then casually tells me that Dsis has finally sorted her smp problem at work. I ask what it was about, they tell me. I say I could have explained that (I pay maternity to her profession), but she never called me.

In fact she never calls me, ignores my messages, cuts me short.

I know it's her prerogative. She doesn't have to want me involved or hear about my experiences. But she's happy to listen to sil or anyone but me.

But here's the thing; it was completely different before I told her I was pregnant. We chatted about her pregnancy she said she wanted to pick my brains etc.

It just feels like when we were kids and it's more of "ugly is always copying me! I'm pregnant and now she is!"

There's no competition, this isn't my first, I've done it all before smile

I really wanted this to bring us closer. But that's clearly not going to happen. It could be hormones, but I'm just so sad.

She never called to see how the epu went. I don't think she cares.

She was very unsympathetic when I had the mc. Told me she wouldn't have overreacted like I did.

Sorry for all the irrelevant info, didn't want to dripfeed. Have name changed.

Thanks if you got through that.

Is there anything I can do to fix this?

TheUglyDuckling Fri 22-Feb-13 20:51:30

Bump

Fairy130389 Fri 22-Feb-13 21:15:59

Sorry, I don't have any advice as such but didn't want to read and run!!
Perhaps pregnancy hormones are making her a bit irrational? I know that I am wrestling with ridiculous paranoias and jealousy that are purely down to baby growing...

Maybe this is making her feel that you have stolen her thunder, I don't know... If I was you I would sit her down and explain to her how you feel, I don't think it is for you to 'fix' it but there is clearly something going on in her head and I think if you tackle it head on it will come out. Good luck!

ladymia Fri 22-Feb-13 21:20:22

It would be impossible to say what her problem with you is, hearing only your side or perception of it. So not really sure what a good answer would be for this!

TheUglyDuckling Fri 22-Feb-13 21:22:31

Thanks fairy. You're right that hormones do make us crazy.

At the moment no one apart from immediate family knows about me.

In fact, my fear of her thinking I'm stealing her thunder is making me not want to tell anyone. I've asked dp if he minds holding off until we can't hide it, and he has been really supportive.

I'm really scared of being made to feel like a little girl who overreacts to everything. And (perhaps my paranoia hormones) I can't help but feel that if she has no respect for my views or experience then she must think I'm shit at this.

I so hoped we would bond and share. Now I'm carefully trying to find classes and things that will be later, so she doesn't loath me for being in the same one as her.

I'm 13 again.

TheUglyDuckling Fri 22-Feb-13 21:25:57

Thanks lady. Any guesses at her perceptions could be helpful. Because I'd like to know.

She has confessed in adulthood to feeling jealous of me. And I replied, "don't be daft I was always jealous of you" my older, more popular sister. Who I adored and who couldn't stand the sight of me (obviously that was as teens, not adults)

snowmummy Fri 22-Feb-13 21:35:11

She sounds horrible and bitter to me. I have been through this with my own sister. She was awful when we were younger and I won't put up with it as an adult. We no longer speak.

HazleNutt Fri 22-Feb-13 21:38:58

She's your sister, just ask her. That this and that has happened, before it was fine, she has behaved like this, you feel like that, what is the issue? It seems to be quite extreme according to your post, so I don't think it will just go away.

HaveIThoughtThisThrough Fri 22-Feb-13 21:46:23

I'm sorry you're having to deal with this during what is such a happy time for you. Are you very close otherwise? Is it the sort of relationship where you could bring it up with her directly and say that you may be misreading her but you feel that she hasn't wanted to speak to you much lately and is there anything you have done? Rather than saying 'this is what you're doing - you are ignoring me/cutting me out etc' which will probably get her back up more. Alternatively, if you think it better, could you gently raise it with your mum and see if your sister has said anything to her. I know it's preferably to do things directly rather than through others but you know best how your family dynamics work. If she doesn't want your help, try to think that it is her loss but stay open for her should she come round.

TheUglyDuckling Fri 22-Feb-13 22:05:52

Snow, really sorry to hear that, it can be so hard

Hazle, I think you're right that it's not just going to go away on its own. I wish I could just ignore. When I last saw her she just upped and left the room with a curt "bye". Normally hugs everyone and makes a big deal. Her dh (who is lovely) made a big point of saying goodbye to me properly. Dp was there and said it was very odd how she just left and that he thought her dh had noticed and made a big effort to include me.

HaveI I like the idea of non-confrontational. My only worry is that rampant hormones on my part could bring out the tears. I think it will just be denied. If I spoke to dm or sil then I think I'd get lots of sympathy and lots of "she doesn't mean it". When it became clear earlier that dsis hasn't contacted me about anything at any point sil said quickly "she's been very busy!" I have wondered if she's noticed something.

I think I need a gentle, "can we talk? Have I done something to offend you?" Conversation. But as I said, I think I'll just be fobbed off with a "no of course not" followed by more of the same.

Any other ideas more than welcome.

MrsMargoLeadbetter Fri 22-Feb-13 22:55:12

Sorry to hear her actions are taking the gloss of what should be a happy time for you.

I would definately position it as "I feel like something has changed, I am sad about that, have I upset you? I want us to enjoy this together. I am so pleased and excited for you etc".

Make it about how you feel as opposed to what she has done wrong etc.

There are 2 sets of hormones on the go etc.

It has to be worth trying to find out what is at the bottom of it all. It might not solve it, but at least you will have tried.

Good kuck.

MrsMargoLeadbetter Fri 22-Feb-13 22:55:52

Or good luck!

TheUglyDuckling Fri 22-Feb-13 23:00:40

Thanks margo. I do feel like this is my first chance to really enjoy a pregnancy (XH was vile to me whilst pregnant), and I was so excited that we would be pregnant together. Sil and I had the same when I had dd, and it was a great way to get to know her better. I really felt we bonded over bf and sleepless nights.

I'll give it a go. Got another visit to epu and then dating scan in a week or so. So hopefully all will be well. I genuinely don't think she's happy for me.

But yes, two lots of hormones to consider so I shall give it a go.

TheUglyDuckling Fri 22-Feb-13 23:01:17

I might need good kuck too, you never know!

MrsMargoLeadbetter Fri 22-Feb-13 23:25:28

It could all work out yet. I have a friend who I thought about when reading your post. She can be jealous and finds it almost impossible to be happy for people if she is feeling like that. You can see it all over her face!

It sounds like you have had such a rough time of it. Hopefully she'll start being nicer or you will just have to try to ignore her/reduce the impact she is having on you. Not easy, but you want a chance to enjoy pregnancy esp as you haven't had that before.

Good luck with the scan. Have everything crossed for you.

ProphetOfDoom Fri 22-Feb-13 23:26:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ProphetOfDoom Fri 22-Feb-13 23:27:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

whiteandyelloworchid Fri 22-Feb-13 23:31:03

"There's no competition, this isn't my first, I've done it all before " i would say this attitude maybe the key to your problem and your solution

just be cool with her, try talking about other stuff and reclaim rebuild oyur bond talk about news, tv whatever, you can bond over many things it doesnt have to be pg or babies

You say your DSis's DH is lovely... Is there no way you could text him and ask if he knows if you've upset DSis? Say you're worried you may have done something wrong but not sure?

Might be a way in...

noblegiraffe Sat 23-Feb-13 06:01:37

I'm guessing it is a stealing thunder thing. It might not be your first, but it is hers, and she has been trying for a long time. Presumably you've taken up family attention getting away from your ex and having a miscarriage and she was enjoying being pregnant and getting attention and now here you are, not only pregnant but being rushed to epu and so once again getting the attention. Then when she has a young baby, you'll be giving birth and having a younger one.

None of this is your fault, of course, but I wouldn't be surprised if she just wanted to concentrate on her pregnancy and not yours.

When I announced my first pregnancy to my sister, she responded 'me too' with her second and she was a bit more pregnant than me. I was pleased for her, but I did feel it took the shine off me being pregnant a bit, totally irrationally, and that it wasn't fair as she'd done it before. Bonkers, but you can't help how you feel. Our children get on brilliantly, by the way, being so close in age smile

TheUglyDuckling Sat 23-Feb-13 07:33:09

White, that could be a solution, I'll give it a go, but I'm not sure I'll be able to change the topic. She's very focused on pregnancy only (which I completely understand!)

She was only trying. For two months, but I know she was anxious that she'd have problems (I did, and it took me years with both previous dcs)

I'm going to be seeing her this evening. There'll be someone there who doesn't know about me, and I don't want anyone to know, so I can easily keep away from mentioning anything to do with my pregnancy.

I am scared that she will let slip, or may have actually already told this person about me. I really hope that's not the case. I'll just have to deal with it when I know.

So tonight I'll be chatty and interested and see how that goes.

She's very competitive too. Last year she kept going on about a friend who had no troubles in her pregnancy etc etc and how amazing she was and how she was out doing things on the last day before birth and on and on. I had really bad spd with dc2. I couldn't leave the house and felt so trapped, and so scared of XH. Who I was completely isolated with. I never said anything, just agreed and smiled and nodded. But coupled with all the "pnd doesn't exist, my friend never had it" (I did) crap over the years she really must think I'm terrible.

For the record I'm not someone who goes on about babies and pregnancy, I'd say they were way down my list of conversation topics. Apart from the occasional "you'll be a great mum" chats over the years when dsis has been broody, I wouldn't say I've ever rammed my motherhood down her throat.

Sorry this is long again.

TheUglyDuckling Sat 23-Feb-13 07:35:06

I forgot to say thank you all for posting. I was really expecting an MN "suck it up you're offending her by existing" response.

You're all lovely.

<hormonal and gushing>

HPsauceonbaconbuttiesmmm Sat 23-Feb-13 07:44:48

I'm sorry you're going through this. I can understand a little from your sisters perspective as when I was pregnant with dc1 my very close best friend became pregnant with her 3rd. I was a bit gutted, felt it took the specialness out of my pregnancy. BUT i recognised this was irrational and never said anything of the sort to my friend or changed the way i behaved.

I think I'd write her a card, keeping along the lines of explaining how you're feeling about your pregnancy, how special it is to you, and explain how much it would mean to you to share this time with her, that you couldnt be happier that there will be cousins so close in age etc. Maybe finish it off with an invite for a pregnancy spa together (if funds allow)? Or send with bunch of flowers? Keep away from any hint of blame, or she'll feel too ashamed to respond.

Hope you can get through this. I personally wouldnt speak to her DH, think she may find this intrusive. But your DP and her DH could maybe have an chat about it all if the card doesnt work?

TheUglyDuckling Sat 23-Feb-13 07:54:24

Thanks HP. Seems like the feelings are quite common, but the acting on them isn't.

CareerGirl01 Sat 23-Feb-13 08:07:00

My youngest DS had babies at 27 and 31. I didn't have DC1 till 37- I am two and a half years older than her. I've never felt anything but happiness for her. However I do have a SIL who is having problems conceiving and she knows I was told when I was 19 that my PCOS might prevent me from having children and that I've followed an exercise and healthy eating regime to 'stay' fertile into my 30s (as well as regular blood tests and check ups) yet she's never asked me for advice; I got pregnant at 42 as well. My mum summed it up yesterday when j said how i longed to give her some comfort/advice 'she's probably a bit jealous and that mixed with pride probably means she is acting this way' May apply to your situation too?

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