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Unforeseen repercussions of going NC [sad]

(47 Posts)
reddaisy Wed 12-Aug-15 21:05:31

I made the decision to go NC with my 'D'M earlier this year as a result of an abusive childhood.

But what has really got me is how it has affected my relationships with other family members - in particular my DSIS and my auntie. Both have basically slowly cut me out. They know my reasons for going NC but I now feel like a scapegoat as if anything it has almost strengthened their relationship with 'D'M. Lots of OTT Facebook posts about outings etc.

Then last week it came to a head when they (my auntie and my DSIS) didn't tell me that my beloved elderly uncle was in hospital and could potentially die. My DH saw a post about it on Facebook! I had unfollowed them as a result of OTT Facebook posts. All I said to them when I went NC with 'D'M was that I didn't expect them to choose between us and that I wanted to have a relationship with them independently of her (get togethers would often have been on my 'D'Ms turf and terms).

Has anyone else experienced this? Any advice? It feels like I have been the one to lose my whole family by finally deciding that I wasn't going to have a relationship with my mother any more. It's making me sad and I feel so disappointed in them.

lougle Wed 12-Aug-15 21:24:25

Poor you. I think it's a bit inevitable though. There's a constant tension whenever they see either of you.

reddaisy Wed 12-Aug-15 21:40:12

Maybe I have been naive, I just assumed they would understand and remain neutral.

RandomMess Wed 12-Aug-15 21:42:33

What lougle said I'm afraid sad with someone like your Mum she would make it very difficult for them to maintain a relationship with you.

coolaschmoola Wed 12-Aug-15 21:45:29

Even though they know your reasons doesn't mean they agree with your decision. It is difficult to stay neutral in these situations, taking sides was almost inevitable.

goddessofsmallthings Wed 12-Aug-15 21:46:51

I agree with lougle. It is inevitable that the weak minded flock like sheep to the one who's exerted the most control over them through the years, and she has no doubt swayed them by temporarily sticking her iron fist in a velvet glove.

It won't last; she'll only be able to suppress her innate unreasonableness for a limited period of time and you'll hear from one or other of the sheep when they become discontented with continually having to dance attendance on her.

Send your uncle a get well soon card and make a note to drop him and auntie a brief line every month or so by way of a general 'thinking of you and hoping you're both well'.

Don't think of yourself as a scapegoat - you're the nanny who had the intelligence and the insight to break free of the herd. grin

reddaisy Wed 12-Aug-15 21:54:00

Thanks goddess, I do feel like I am the one who has made a stand. They don't agree with my decision they want me to sweep everything under the carpet and play happy families.

I don't think my 'D'M will have exerted any control over them but they normally see each other 3 times a year and it has more than doubled in the last six months with each meeting documented on Facebook. Not by my 'D'M but by my auntie which I am so bemused by.

I have sent my uncle a card and a book and will keep being the reasonable one.

lougle Wed 12-Aug-15 22:08:42

Your Aunt is trying to smooth the troubled waters. She's hoping you'll see what you're missing.

Cinnamonthecat Wed 12-Aug-15 22:27:03

is it possible the old dynamic suited your aunt and sister and they feel uncomfortable with the new independent you?

Lictionary Wed 12-Aug-15 22:31:23

Two and a half years ago I did the same. NC with mum and sister. Thirty plus years of low level abuse, sneering, negativity came to a head when my sister started on me about my parenting. And my.mum backed her.

Since then I have built bridges with my mum, I still don't see my sister, but i have come to realise that the rest of my family is still punishing me. And we will eventually move away and just leave them to their own devices.

hurts like hell though.

reddaisy Wed 12-Aug-15 22:44:53

Lougle, yes that is what DH says but it truly feels like I am back at school everyone is whispering about me and frankly the kind of status updates she posts are more in keeping with my much younger Facebook friends: 'Mmm can't wait for afternoon tea at x with x, three weeks to go!'

Cinnamon - I think I have upset the family dynamic by pointing out that the behaviour is unacceptable and my position is untenable now and that it is easier to close ranks against the black sheep than face the truth.

Lictionary, sorry to hear you have been through this too. I can honestly see myself being in a similar situation with my auntie and DSIS and I have learnt not to expect anything from my 'D'M but I had thought they would want to support me and be there for me even if they don't agree with my decision.

MissBananaMama Wed 12-Aug-15 23:15:05

I'm so sorry you are going through this. I am currently going through a very similar situation and it hurts like hell.

Unfortunately you can only account for yourself and if others want to behave in such a way that you find upsetting then you can't really do anything about it other than distance yourself and try not to engage in the Facebook stuff. It's their choice to stay in contact and you just have to respect that in the same way they have to respect your wishes for NC. Facebook is so fake anyway so try and ignore it.

I hope it gets better for you soon

Cinnamonthecat Wed 12-Aug-15 23:17:28

its tough Reddaisy, I've been/am still going through it myself. As Lictionary said it is hurtful though but with time the pain does lessen. I find with a bit of distance now that I can see that for most people its all about them, the status quo suits them and they'll do anything to maintain it. I found a marvellous quote today from Alex Haley "Either you deal with what is the reality, or you can be sure that the reality is going to deal with you". I think that will be my mantra from now on!

Aussiebean Thu 13-Aug-15 00:57:52

I would also imagine that they liked you being around so your mum had some one to pick on.

Now you are gone, they are worried that they might be next so are playing happy families in the hope of being safe.

If they get you back, they are safe.

It won't last. But that is their problem. Not yours.

stareatthetvscreen Thu 13-Aug-15 01:21:27

i suppose its kind of like a divorce in some ways and people are very rarely neutral after that

springydaffs Thu 13-Aug-15 01:42:37

Yes I've experienced this. And yes it hurts like hell.

Major wakeup call. It's a shock to realise how invested people are in what is essentially a toxic dynamic. A therapist once described families as finally tuned like mobiles - not the mobiles we text and make calls from but the mobiles hanging over eg a cot! If one part of the mobile breaks off the mobile tilts crazily.

My family also went into overdrive when I stepped off their crazy mobile. I have no idea what they're doing now. It hurts less as time goes on but ime it will always be a bit sore that the ones i didn't expect closed ranks behind me. It's about survival.

Sprit Thu 13-Aug-15 07:25:12

Reddaisy, I understand how you feel. Same position here, my extended family prefered / were sucked in to develop an even more chummy relationship with my M despite knowing and choosing to disbelieve my childhood and adult experiences.

They also seem to have believed her smear campaign about me. How people can be so shallow and uncaring, and dismissive of my dc, is so hurtful.

At least you are out of that dynamic now, just block them on facebook, which means they can't see what you're doing either as you move forward.

Fatrascals Thu 13-Aug-15 07:29:59

That's really tough.
I suggest you go NC with Facebook (seriously)

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Thu 13-Aug-15 07:32:26

OP I am sure you thought long and hard about going NC.
Being ostracised by other family members is hurtful. Knowing you can't do anything about it when others melt away and leave you high and dry is frustrating.

Unfortunately "we're right behind you!" can mean just that. They won't step up alongside you. If anything, you voluntarily dropping by the wayside means the atmosphere lightens. In time it is possible that aunt and DSis will fall foul of your mother, but for now they are safe knowing that you bear the stigma of the One That Got Away.

It is still better than being caught up in the dysfunctional family of origin, safer to look to your DH and friends. Be your bright loving likable self, be discerning with whom you trust, no more being goaded by FB users.

rumbleinthrjungle Thu 13-Aug-15 08:29:47

Books on the subject often talk about that when one family member stands up to or leaves a dysfunctional family, the other members fight it. Mostly because it challenges then to confront their own dysfunctionality and they were comfortable with the status quo, and the given 'roles' in the family can then change. Although for scapegoat children blame can still be collectively dumped on them from afar, so they go on serving their purpose even after they have left.

I'm sorry you're having to deal with losing the whole group, but you likely have more strength and independence than they do. It may change over the years, dynamics change slowly over time, but I've always stuck to the phrase 'friends are the family you choose for yourself'.

JimmyChoosChimichanga Thu 13-Aug-15 09:09:09

Is there an inheritance in the mix OP? Remember the old saying, 'When money comes in the door, love goes out the window'.

reddaisy Thu 13-Aug-15 09:20:19

Yes, Jimmy but not for a long time as 'D'M is only 50 and in v good health. I wasn't the scapegoat when I was in the family but I feel that is how I am being treated now. I actually don't blame my 'D'M for their behaviour, I don't think she will have been exerting pressure so I blame them for basically rejecting me. I specifically told them I wasn't asking them to choose but that I stood by my decision and I hoped we would find a way to have contact with each other independent from 'D'M - ie organise our own get together a etc.

DeckSwabber Thu 13-Aug-15 09:21:37

That certainly resonates with me and my experience, rumble.

I stood up to my family over something very important. Other people ganged up on me. Even after I was proved right, I am the one who has been cast out.

Its incredibly hurtful. I am now estranged. Originally it wasn't my choice but now I feel I don't want to go back because I know what they are capable of (or maybe what they are not capable of - unable to do the right thing).

reddaisy Thu 13-Aug-15 09:30:09

Yes Deck, it changes everything doesn't it? Mostly I feel sad and down about it but I am starting to think 'fuck you'. A friend has said I should talk to them but I don't want have to ask people to be good family members to me, it kind of defeats the point. Thank you for sharing your experience, it really does help to know I'm not alone.

DeckSwabber Thu 13-Aug-15 09:36:28

Sometimes I feel incredibly sad. Desolate. I was sobbing about it last night in fact!

Other times I think 'fuck you'. I am looking forward to the day I don't think about it at all.

Unfortunately in my case its about my mum who is ill so I actually can't cut myself off altogether. And if I avoid contact its another stick to beat me with, another justification for them to conclude its 'not them'.

They say the best revenge is a life well lived - focus on looking after yourself and spending time with people who don't make you feel like shit.

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