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This is unhealthy isn't it?

(17 Posts)
appletarts Wed 01-May-13 20:31:26

I have a terrible relationship with sister, very long history of her controlling mind games and I now realise she's been gaslighting me for years. There have been endless blow ups and it's impossible to relate to her as any normal person, she can't resolve things and bears imaginary grudges with an absolute hatred. Anyway, she wants to keep in touch with my kids and periodically arranges these dreaded meetings, I have gone along with this because I wanted my kids to keep extended family. Today dd said that aunty .... doesn't like me (me that is, mum). So now I'm wondering is this set up healthy even for my dc. It's not right that we keep this sort of deal going just for kids when kids are just witnessing her not liking me and actually bullying me really. So tired of this.

ImperialBlether Wed 01-May-13 20:34:47

It's time to cut her off. It's not up to her what happens - take control yourself. Tell her the children won't be seeing her again because they (not you) don't like her slagging you off to them.

She sounds awful. Was she always like that?

appletarts Wed 01-May-13 20:41:38

She doesn't slag me off, they're too young. There's been years of this, we were close for years until I disagreed with her and then she's set about persecuting me for the past 6 years. The list is endless of dreadful things she's done to me. She's adorable with kids but kids know we pretty much hate eachother.

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Wed 01-May-13 20:45:37

End it. Maybe, in the end, she may come to realise she needs you.

If not, meh. Lifes too short for that shit.

candyandyoga Wed 01-May-13 21:07:47

Do NOT let her near your children!

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 01-May-13 21:37:15

My view is that there is a duty of care towards parents. Bit of effort required as we only have them for a limited time etc. However, siblings are entirely optional. You owe her nothing. She sounds appalling if she's badmouthing you to your own children..... What kind of twisted creature does that?

appletarts Wed 01-May-13 21:49:46

She's not badmouthing, kids too young, they've just picked up on the atmosphere.

wonderingagain Thu 02-May-13 00:20:56

I'm all for keeping contact with extended family but this sounds unhealthy. Look at it from dcs point of view. You are leaving her with someone who doesn't like you and giving them a view of you that undermines the bond they have with you. It means that they will be torn- they have to be friends with someone who doesn't want to be friends with you. I'm going through a similar thing at the moment and considering cutting contact because the dcs know what's going on and it's like sending them over to the enemy.

WobblyHalo Thu 02-May-13 05:36:33

She may not be badmouthing you now, but how will you know if and when she starts?

Protect your children.

One of them may one day not agre with her and she will turn on them too. Do you want them to go through what you went through?

No, it's not healthy and there really is no good ending to this. cut contact.

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 02-May-13 05:56:35

If very small children have already picked up that atmosphere then, even if it's unspoken, she's making her feelings known. You don't have to drop contact completely if you don't want to. Just limit visits to being very sporadic rather than letting her make the running. Next time she wants one of her meetings you don't have to be available or, if you are, you can engineer the timing and the location so that you don't have to be with her very long. Maybe she'd be less trouble if you met off-site somewhere like a play centre or a cafe?

appletarts Thu 02-May-13 14:30:35

Thanks for replies, I also wonder if there's any good ending to this. Has anyone ever had an arrangement like this that over time has worked out? I think this sister is still bullying me but just doing it now through my kids and I'm being naive agreeing to these visits. I want to cut contact but feel sad about that and also sad for dc who like her but she is absolutely vile to me and I would go as far as saying she hates me. I'm the only person her whole life who has called her on her crap and she hates me for it.

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 02-May-13 14:35:26

My extended family is positively shot through with siblings that have dropped contact with others... made up... dropped... made up smile When there's some big family gathering in the offing, I tell you, it's a wonder someone doesn't wake up with a horse's head in their bed...

I think the trick is not to 'officially' drop the person but just make yourself more unreachable. Send birthday cards but screen calls. Be busy when meetings are suggested and don't initiate. Arms length job. They get bored with you eventually and move onto another victim.

AttilaTheMeerkat Thu 02-May-13 14:54:28

She is indeed using your DC to get back at you; this is what at heart dysfunctional and damaged people do.

Your only "mistake" here (and I have put that word in quote marks because its an understandable assumption to make on your part because you are yourself reasonable and emotionally healthy) was to assume that she was going to be somehow reasonable with them even though she cannot stand your very being or existence.

Protect your children. They do not need or warrant such a poor and dysfunctional role model of an aunty in their lives.

I would also think your parents have played a big role here in allowing her to behave as she has done towards you. I would like to know what your parents actually think.

appletarts Thu 02-May-13 18:51:21

My mother knows she has been a bitch, there's some undeniable bullying from her such as ignoring me on my wedding day. My mum says I need to apologise for sticking up for myself and go back to the way things were, where she pushed me about and I let her but it was peaceful (although my life didn't take off until I told her I was a seperate person with my own thoughts and feelings and take on reality), it was that which sent her over the edge.

DIYapprentice Thu 02-May-13 19:02:34

Do you want to train your DC into being people who will allow themselves to get pushed around? Because that is what will happen if you continue this arrangement.

If she weren't your sister, would you allow contact? I'll be the answer is no. Just because she is your sister doesn't mean she the right to this contact.

appletarts Thu 02-May-13 21:20:43

If she weren't my sister I would have nothing more to do with her.

WafflyVersatile Fri 03-May-13 00:18:06

What happens when the kids get a bit older and do something she takes umbrage at?

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