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Is this disrespectful? Or just weird?

(29 Posts)
BintOfBohemia Wed 02-Sep-09 15:09:53

Have a well documented and difficult relationship with my toxic parents. I am working through things and have got to a point where I am trying to expect nothing from them.

They seem to have got to a point where they have left the country for a month without mentioning it to me.

They mentioned a few weeks to DH that they were going on holiday for the whole of September. They never told me, and have just realised that it is now September, and unless I'm wrong, they have gone, and have not bothered to let me know. I wouldn't mind, but they get terribly shitty if I don't pick up the phone/return calls instantly so it's a bit crap, I think. They blew off DS2's birthday the other week, and whilst I thanked them for his present they haven't been in touch for weeks.

Is it quite disrespectful of them to bugger off without them mentioning it to me, it's not like it's a long weekend, it's a month; if other members of the family weren't aware of the situation I could probably be forgiven for reporting them missing. hmm

warthog Wed 02-Sep-09 15:14:55

sounds to me like they're punishing you somehow.

i'm sorry i don't know the history, but i'd be hurt and upset. it's disrespectful AND wierd.

sounds to me like you'd be doing well to try and extract yourself.

TheArmadillo Wed 02-Sep-09 15:16:55

I agree that it sounds like they're trying to punish you.

try and ignore it.

They're seeing how you will react- so don't.

BintOfBohemia Wed 02-Sep-09 15:38:04

bugger, my reply got lost!

Basically, yes, I think you're right, I'm tarting to realise I've been punished from the word go for all kinds of things. Mainly for having the audacity to be born to a woman my father can't stand. hmm

They seem to go out of their way to make me understand how insignificant I am to them. I was hoping to avoid a situation where we have no contact at all as we have their only grandchildren, but they don't seem to give a shit about that anyway. I imagine they're hanging in there for when my sister (my father and SM's daughter) provides them with some proper ones.

Perhaps I'll move house and not mention it, see how that goes down. wink

BintOfBohemia Wed 02-Sep-09 16:13:25

And yep, I reckon you're right Armadillo. I will ignore it.

AttilaTheMeerkat Wed 02-Sep-09 16:42:37


Think I've written to you before haven't I re these toxic twosome; I think your name is slightly different now to your previous posting (is this your Dad and your SM who have been awful to you all for ages?). If I am right you are well within your rights to keep on avoiding this toxic pairing.

Just keep on ignoring them. This is being done by them to "punish" you.

BintOfBohemia Wed 02-Sep-09 17:01:05

Hi Attila - yes it's me, and you're right. You've been really helpful to me throughout this long running saga!

I'd be quite happy to keep avoiding them, but then they would make me out to be the bad guy. I'm not quite sure how this whole thing should work really; I wish them no ill, in fact I wish they could be happy so they could stop behaving like idiots, but I need to draw the line for self preservation. It sounds silly but I don't know how this works in terms of things like birthdays? They have one coming up, and I don't want to be seeen to be the bad guy by ignoring it entirely.... Do you send cards to people like this, or cut free entirely? I dunno...

AttilaTheMeerkat Wed 02-Sep-09 18:01:25

Whose birthday is coming up?. I would't be bothering with them at all. Your self preservation is far more important than theirs or any perceived slight towards them on their part.

What does your DH think of the pair of them?.

For what its worth I think your SM is the main instigator behind all this and your Dad has gone along with her in the bystander role out of wanting of a quiet life and self preservation. They are both very selfish people and I do not let your Dad off the hook either for those reasons too.

Its really nice that you don't wish them any ill but unfortunately they are not as reasonable as you are and never will be. These dysfunctional toxic people do not and never play by the "normal" rules of family behaviour. Also making you out to be the "bad guy" (to other rellies in particular) is also a common tactic employed by such toxic people as well.

BintOfBohemia Wed 02-Sep-09 18:13:12

It's my father's - but to be honest I got him a father's day card (against my instincts, I have to say) and a small present and he was offhand and dismissive with me. Some effort went into making the card and he didn't even acknowledge it, let alone the present, so I kind of think, well, sod it.

I think you're probably right with regard to my SM being the instigator, although I have come to despise my father for standing back and allowing me to be treated like shit for years. Well, and for him doing it. The most direct thing he ever did was to beat the crap out of me when I was 16, and although it was so long ago that has resurfaced with me and I'm finding it hard to put aside. He never apologised, it was brushed under the carpet and has never been mentioned by anyone again. As if he has the right to do that to me and it means nothing, I mean nothing.

Attila - I've been meaning to ask you; how come you know so much about all of this? Were your parents like this, or are you a counsellor or something like that? smile

AttilaTheMeerkat Wed 02-Sep-09 18:20:56

My parents have been both disinterested and unsupportive over the years towards both me and the Meerkat family unit. Have also received solace from the Stately Homes thread and have read excerpts from TP. As for my dysfunctional in laws they're even worse than my sorry lot. Basically they would make a good case study for Dr Raj Persaud.

All in all the four of them provide adject lessons in how not to behave.

BintOfBohemia Wed 02-Sep-09 18:42:19

Sorry to hear that. Although, as you say, not that there's much positive in it, but it can be used as a lesson in how not to be a parent, or a person.

BintOfBohemia Sat 05-Sep-09 19:01:58

Ok - to update, got a breezy text today asking if I'd had their other texts and saying they're having a lovely holiday.

It struck me as a bit odd, especially as I texted my cousin today and asked if she knew if they were away, and then a few hours later I get a text from them. I dunno what to make of it really. It seems very odd that they claim to have sent texts (plural!) and I haven't had any until this one, I don'thave problems getting them from anyone else!

Am I beign cynical or is this odd?!

BintOfBohemia Sun 06-Sep-09 18:46:02

bumping - just to see if anyone thinks this "ooh, have you been getting our texts" line is plausible?

foofi Sun 06-Sep-09 18:47:54

My parents don't even know how to text, so it would definitely be odd for me to be told that!

Seriously though, that does sound strange. I think you need to let it go though, for your own sanity.

Katisha Sun 06-Sep-09 18:51:25

Let it go - decide not to get involved in their mind games. Don't play.

BintOfBohemia Sun 06-Sep-09 18:51:28

Yeah, I think you're right. Am just wondering how/whether to reply, and whether I should be offended by the whole thing - as it seems like my whole family know where they are, except me.

Katisha Sun 06-Sep-09 18:51:59

Don't reply.

BintOfBohemia Sun 06-Sep-09 18:56:01

Cheers Katisha - so far I haven't, just because I can't be arsed. Am not sure whether that looks like am being petulant though. Although whatever I do will be wrong anyway, no doubt, so I suppose it doesn't matter!

Katisha Sun 06-Sep-09 18:57:22

Exactly! You are never going to win this game so leave 'em to it.

Portofino Sun 06-Sep-09 19:00:26

"didn't you get my other texts" is a cop out excuse for "I didn't actually send one". I work for telecoms company! I too would ignore them.

As an aside, TheArmadillo, how are you getting on with your lot?

BintOfBohemia Sun 06-Sep-09 19:04:47

Portofino - thanks, that's interesting to have that perspective on it, texts don't generally get lost in the ether do they? Once, maybe, but repeatedly? hmm

Portofino Sun 06-Sep-09 20:14:20

No - they don't. One maybe. Several very unlikely! We invest huge sums into insuring things like that don't happen.

ShanBrod Mon 07-Sep-09 03:56:45

The text thing is a perfect excuse for passing the blame onto you, my IL's used this same excuse when confronted about having a family dinner and not inviting/telling us about it after our wedding while on holidays together
( AttilaTheMeerkat you also gave me excellent advice on my postsmile).Mind you i was texting a relo at the dinner and had no problems receiving her texts.
Like your parents my IL don't make much effort with us,they wait for us to make the calls,visits or first moves all the time.

Eight weeks ago MIL forgot to give me an invite sent to her house to a family baby shower and then blamed DH for forgetting to tell me which he knew nothing about it.....the list goes on.
Like you we have MIL birthday coming up in 2 weeks and we have not seen or heard from then since the baby shower eight weeks ago so we are not bothering to go to her party.
For fathers day i sent a card from the children but didn't go visit due to standing my ground with being silently abused by them but still making a half arsed effort if it comes up later down the track by them wink

ShanBrod Mon 07-Sep-09 04:03:38

Oh an my ILs live 3 streets away!

kickassangel Mon 07-Sep-09 04:13:08

well, they did tell your dh, so it seems fair to think he spoke to you, but they haven't exactly gone out of their way to be in touch.

why not just send back, 'no, didn't get them. have a nice time' they can't take offense & you haven't apologised/backed down.

then wait to see how long they're back before they contact you.

dh's parents actually DID move house (and jobs, phone, and emails) without telling us, then got all huffy cos we hadn't been asking them if they were well

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