Meddling mother, irrational sister

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-15-2003
Meddling mother, irrational sister
Tue, 04-15-2003 - 9:47pm
My little sister and I never got along well when we were younger, and now that we're in our late 20s, I've tried to strengthen our relationship. It's been very rocky, because although I love her dearly, she has a habit of treating family members badly. Some examples: constantly borrowing money from parents so that she can go to expensive bars with her friends on weekends (it's thousands of dollars now, and no sign of repaying), being very rude to my young son, lots of eye rolling and dramatic sighs when home for holidays and doesn't get her way.

Anyway, she has always complained that I don't visit her enough. Last summer her boyfriend broke up with her unexpectedly and she asked me to come stay with her for a week. I did, and have regretted it ever since. She was unbelievably rude to me and my little boy the whole time, and when I confronted her about it (as kindly as possible), she flew off the handle, kicked me out, and didn't speak to either of us for five months. I tried to make contact again and have gone out to visit her very briefly three times since. The first two trips were wonderful, just like how I imagined sisters should be. When I went down this past weekend, though, she was truly awful. I was only there for two days and contracted food poisoning during my stay, so didn't have the energy to confront her. When I returned, I confided in my mother about how disappointed I was. Well, mom turned around and called little sis, telling her everything I'd said (in a gossipy way, you understand, not to tell her that it wasn't right).

No clue what to do now. My family has always tiptoed around my sister, constantly afraid of triggering one of her dreadful temper tantrums, and I'm sick of it. Everyone always says, "You know how she is," but to me that is not an acceptable excuse. Apparently they consider it fine if a 27-year-old woman sits at the Thanksgiving dinner table ignoring everyone just because she lost a friendly game of Trivial Pursuit. The entire family feels like she's only nice to us when it's convenient. The problem is, if anyone calls her on her bad behavior, she flies into a rage and ignores us for months. I'd love to have a good relationship with her, but I'm starting to wonder if this will ever be possible.

I'm also not happy with my mother for telling my sister how I felt--it simply wasn't her place, and she's created a huge conflict, which I don't need since I am also going through a divorce. She did this once several years ago, and promised never to do it again. I'm going to be much more selective about what I tell her from now on.

So, does anyone have any clue what to do about the sister problem? Is it possible to divorce family the same way you can divorce spouses?

Avatar for cl_starrzz_n_moonzz
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Wed, 04-16-2003 - 10:36am
Yep I have heard many people who say they are totally "divorcing" their families and one that has done it. I would not take it because that is how she is stuff. My sister is the same way except she is older and mopes and pouts instead of throwing fits. My mother always says "You know how she is so try not to hurt her feelings" Well I did this for the most part of our lives together and then I had enough. She was going on and on about something and I finally blew up on her. It strained us terribly and it took about a month or more to sort things out. We never really talked about the reasons that started this I just really started to be brutally honest with her. I didn't hold my tongue anymore to spare her. It has wonderful results( at least for us) She has started to come around and realize their are others in this world and no one should revolve around her all the time. I am not saying it has totally went away, but it has helped. I would start being totally honest with her and let her throw her fits and tell her when she decides she is ready to act like a 27 year old woman then you will se her then. Until then no matter what I would leave her be let her feel what it is like to be alone with her. Hang in there and try to be there fo r her when she needs you , but I would not put up with the temper tantrums any more. I would also not speak about it in front of my mom if she felt she needed to relay everything on to her. I would just try to keep the conversations away from her when you are with you mom. I hope this has helped there will be others along to help ya too. Let us know what you decide to do and how you handle this. I am sure others could benefit from what you do:) We hope to hear from ya soon. We are her for you when you need us. Until then have a great Wednesday~~~~Michelle
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-03-2003
Mon, 04-28-2003 - 8:05pm
I agree with being honest with your sister from now on.

Also, I think not telling your mother things that you don't want getting back to your sister is a good idea. I know my mother does the SAME thing. If I tell her not to tell, she will tell anyway. And I find out, because my sister usually slips somewhere along the way and that's how it gets back to me. So, I have had to really limit what I tell my mother about almost anything, because it will get back to others, and I don't want my life being shared with the rest of the USA. :) LOL