Is This Normal?

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-26-2002
Is This Normal?
Thu, 06-20-2013 - 7:20pm

Is it normal for my brothers to be completely unsupportive

 Am I expecting too much?  I keep wondering what I've done wrong.



iVillage Member
Registered: 09-29-2010
Thu, 06-20-2013 - 9:02pm

Its normal for the situation. I recall your post from last month about these brothers, aren't they younger half-brothers and you were raised away from them due to a family situation? For them to feel protective, you would probably need to have spent more time with them in the past developing a close relationship. Isn't your mother deceased, giving them less reason to feel a connection? I don't think you can just show up after being gone for years and expect an instant close family, and for these semi-strangers to care deeply about your problems. Even siblings that were raised together don't necessarily have that unless they make some effort at maintaining closeness, and there are lots of reasons why siblings might not be close. Sharing DNA doesn't automatically make you emotionally close.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Thu, 06-20-2013 - 10:03pm

I would say that family dynamics are all different.  For ex, my best friend is the only girl & she has 4 brothers.  There is one "responsible" brother but the other 3 are really useless.  Their mom is 91 & in a nursing home and practically all the duties fall on my friend and the responsible brother.  Of course one brother has a mental illness and the mother basically convinced him that he's helpless, so he can barely take care of himself.  Another one used to be a drug addict, but he's been sober for years and he really could help out, even if it's only taking the MI brother to visit the mom.  The last brother is "normal", could hold a job, etc. so there is no reason he couldn't be helpful, but he just isn't.  So you really have to look at the family dynamics from childhood to figure out why in some families everyone is supportive and in others people aren't, and maybe in others, some siblings have good relationships & other ones in the same family don't.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-22-2004
Fri, 06-21-2013 - 10:16am

Who on earth knows what normal is? But if they don´t respond to your letters, calls or e mails. That clearly shows they have no inteterst.I would stop knocking a door that would never open. I can´t tell why are they like that. The only thing I know is that now a days people have become horrible selfish. They only think about themselves but they can´t think about anyone else. My brothers are like that, they really don´t give a &%$· to what ever is going on with my life. Not warm, not friendly, not supportive. Years ago I realized that I was the only one making and effort to keep them or have them close, but we all get TIRED. So I don´t do it anymore, I have stopped  specting anything from them. It is very hard to bear in mind that you have almost no one to be there for you. But as soon as you realize and overcome it, you might then be able to find other supportive people in yout life, as probably friends that have families like the one you have.I know it is hard.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-14-2003
Sun, 06-30-2013 - 1:21pm

When my mother was getting cancer treatment, and once her cancer became terminal and went to her brain, she was at my place so that I could care for her with help from my sister.  My sister and I did most of the caretaking, but it was the Christmas season and my sister and I decided to get catered food for our family dinner as neither of us were up to cooking a full feast as was our normal tradition.  We had our brother, the youngest, care for our mother while we went to pick up the catering.  We told him we would be, at most, 3 hours as we had to travel to pick the food up along with wine and some last minute Christmas gifts for people.  Within a half hour of leaving, he was calling my sister's cell asking when we would return.  He called every ten minutes, yelling and screaming that he had to do stuff.  He had never been asked to "sacrifice" any of his time and when we needed a break because Mom's mental capacity suffered due to the metastasized tumours in her brain, he could not cope.  So I don't know if this is a male thing, or maybe it's just coincidence that we have male siblings that are irresponsible and selfish, but we went through the same thing with our brother.  My sister ripped into him something fierce on the phone when he kept calling and we returned when we said we would, and he left in a huff, only to come back and enjoy the feast we were out getting for the family.