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about keeping in contact with exSIL?

(32 Posts)
icouldbethomasina Fri 23-Sep-11 23:25:31

DBro and SIL are in the midst of a very very bitter divorce.

DBro is StepD to my 2 neices (their BirthDad is not in picture - DBro has been since youngest was 6)

I got on very very well with (ex)SIL (we lived close to them while they where married)

My DBro is well - not a very nice bloke - manipulative,had problems a few years ago with booze, generally an angry man etc (without going into it there is stuff in our childhood -not a excuse but a part explanation as to why over the years I have put up with him to some degree)

DBro is not and said he will not be involved with 2 DN and has moved about 4 hrs away, got new flat etc.

On phone to DBro tonight (to make sure he is alright - I feel like I should as no one else will - we are all each other have famiy wise) he shouted down the phone saying that I should have nothing to do with that 'Fucking dirty bitch or her fucking bitches of daughters'

Now I am glad that he is having nothing to do with DN anymore. but exSIL and I still get on well - we are friends. Her DDs consider and call me and DH aunt and uncle and are very excited to have a new (and the first one) cousin. (we still see each other as live close etc)

But as exSIL is cutting all ties with DBro AIBU to keep in contact with her and DN especially as I will not cut my ties with my brother completely.
Is it fair on DN to still be aunt and uncle and have cousins but yet their StepDad doesn't want anything to do with them? (they are 12 and 14)

I know I could bring this up with exSIL but with all the shit she is going though from DBro I don't want to bring more stuff for her to think about.

So thought I'd get your opinion

hester Fri 23-Sep-11 23:29:20

YANBU.

wannaBe Fri 23-Sep-11 23:35:31

yanbu.

and if sil is happy for you to stay in touch then I would just not make it an issue tbh.

Your brother sounds like a tosser.

notsorted Fri 23-Sep-11 23:37:47

YANBU, the breakdown in the relationship is between DBro and SiL. You chose what you think is right and who you want to remain in contact with. At their age DNs need aunts and uncles, people who can be objective about their needs. By all means tell SiL when things calm down a bit where you stand but in the meantime give support to who you want and how you want, but perhaps don't tell DBro what you are doing so openly - don't lie but don't proffer information.

eaglewings Fri 23-Sep-11 23:41:17

My sister is still very close to her ex sil and it is a very positive thing for her and the kids.

Difficult as your brother doesn't want you to, but in the end it's not his decision

WilsonFrickett Fri 23-Sep-11 23:42:24

ex-SIL and I still get on - we are friends

There's your answer. You are friends so of course you are not going to cut ties with her.

AgentZigzag Fri 23-Sep-11 23:56:00

If he's a twat of the highest order, does it matter what he thinks of you keeping in contact?

Are you going to do as a twat of the highest order tells you to do?

I hope not.

Whatever went on between him and your SIL has nothing to do with your DNs.

Your SIL will need all the support she can get, and by the sounds of it she's lucky to have you onboard smile

maristella Fri 23-Sep-11 23:59:14

Sometimes family is the unit you build around you, and it sounds as if ex-Sil and her daughters meet that criteria.

You sound like a lovely aunt smile

LineRunner Sat 24-Sep-11 00:07:16

Stay friends with her; but be truthful.

Good for you. smile

iscream Sat 24-Sep-11 00:10:55

I would stay in contact with your sil and dn's. They are important to you whether or not your b is in the picture, and he sounds horrible, sorry. They shouldn't loose out on you, nor you them. Just don't discuss them with your b ever. Sorry your brother is like that...I don't think childhood is to blame, sounds like he is not well mentally or is a bad person to talk about the girls like that. I am sorry, maybe he needs help, but don't let him ruin your friendship/relationship, they are still your family in your heart.

icouldbethomasina Sat 24-Sep-11 00:21:06

So glad you think it is okay and that IANBU - DBro just gets to me with things like that.

iscream I'm not blaming his behaviour our childhood but trust me when I say it definatly wasnt pretty and some of his actions (eg drink and being very angry at world etc) are a reaction and a way to deal with all the shit we went though. (manipulation though and stuff like that is him, his personality and has our father written all over it) That probably sounds like I am defending him - I'm not really - it is just that I have spent many years helping him and backing him up and looking out for him (even though I am younger)

Morloth Sat 24-Sep-11 00:22:54

You should stay in contact, but be very careful to start viewing them separately. As in make sure your DB doesn't try to use your contact to control XSIL and vice versa.

Forge a separate relationship with them that doesn't involve your brother at all.

Imnotdarrellrivers Sat 24-Sep-11 00:45:35

Guessing there is more to you and your DBro relationship than you are saying - which is fine.

Continue to have a relationship with exSIL and DN in a way that you, she and DN want to and keep your DBro (though why you include the D i don't know) separate from them, your relationship and don't bring it up (esp around DN - who actually are of an age where they can decide if they want to continue to have a relationship with you when it is not required. Take the fact that they do as a complement)

FetchezLaVache Sat 24-Sep-11 00:45:58

From what you say, in your shoes I'd be staying in touch with DSIL and DNs but kicking DB to the kerb. You don't get to choose your family, and all that...

AgentZigzag Sat 24-Sep-11 00:57:40

You say nobody else in your family bothers with him icould, has he ever said he appreciates how loyal you've been to him?

I admire you for sticking with him through thick and thick.

AgentZigzag Sat 24-Sep-11 00:58:20

Hehe, through thick and thin <thick as fuck> grin

FabbyChic Sat 24-Sep-11 06:47:32

Why would you cut contact with her? It is not you that is divorcing her.

You and her are friends, providing she doesn't slag off your brother to you I cannot see what the problem is.

He has fucked off, you still live their, you are to all intents and purposes still family, just because a divorce occurs does not mean you have to cease contact.

itisnearlysummer Sat 24-Sep-11 07:08:58

Agree, keep in contact with her and give your brother a wide berth for a bit. Tbh, you nieces don't deserve to lose their 'dad' and their aunt/uncle/cousin.

He is behaving very U, you are not.

Smadarama Sat 24-Sep-11 07:09:06

I'm still friends with x sil and her family - in fact we're closer now than we were when I was married to her brother. At first we had a couple of awkward moments re: boundaries - mainly due to me it has to be said - but it soon settled down, now after 7 years divorce it's just settled into an easy friendship. The other day her daughter - now an older teenager posted a picture of me from back in the day on her FB page and tagged me as 'Auntie Smadarama' - made me smile.

iscream Sat 24-Sep-11 07:28:06

You sound like a supportive and understanding sister. I understand how a person can be scarred by a bad childhood. And sometimes a person can inherit personality and temper from a parent. I noticed it in my oldest son who does not know his bio father, but still has some of his personality and characteristics. Good luck.

Icelollycraving Sat 24-Sep-11 07:46:02

I would leave it to sil. It would be too harsh & unnecessary to cut her & her children out of your life. Lots of people give you a wide berth when you divorce,don't be one of them.

MULLYPEEP Sat 24-Sep-11 08:03:58

YANBU to stay in contact. Although your brothers behaviour is crap at times, he is hurting and wants you to be loyal to him and might feel you are rejecting him for them, just by maintaining contact. I would explain to him your loyalties are still with him now and in the future, that you are sorry for the divorce and all the rubbish that goes with it but you dont see how stopping your relationship is helpful. If your childhood was crap, he'll probably be very sensitive to rejection.

bluelaguna Sat 24-Sep-11 08:09:11

My mum and dad divorced years ago.

My mum is still in contact with and sees my dad's sister and my dad's brother. Also their children and grandchildren. They all get on well, always have done. My dad doesn't get on with anyone from any part of the family, although I keep in contact with my dad to keep the peace.

So, YANBU IMO.

StewieGriffinsMom Sat 24-Sep-11 08:12:42

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Groovee Sat 24-Sep-11 08:51:09

I'd speak to your SIL and see what she wants to do. When dh's relation and his then partner split we'd been very friendly but she cut contact with me too as she was about to launch a horrific custody battle. It makes me sad but sometimes this is the way life is.

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