Sun Dec 2, 2012, 12:42 PM
Denninmi (6,581 posts)
Here's one to ponder -- "family problems" have reared up again. Thoughts?
Let me preface this by sharing something my therapist said -- I commented that, despite the fact I spent three weeks in the psych ward and am on lamictal, I am the sane one in my family, and she said, based on what I have told her over the years, she completely agrees with me.
So, the sister issue has reared its head. And I have done absolutely nothing in weeks, since the big blowup about a month ago, to upset her, in fact I have gone out of my way to try to be nice to her.
I definitely believe she is bipolar II as am I -- she exhibits all of the same mood swings, irritability, and a good deal of paranoia, now aimed at mostly at me, although for many years we have heard constantly about how the people at her work hate her, she is about to be fired, etc. At almost 60, she remains undiagnosed and untreated, and I am sure always will.
Here's what happened : as part of my "new life" I am now away from home far more than I am home -- appointments, sessions at the gym, even a few "fun things" such as the couple of free "how-to" presentations at REI. All of which is all about me recovering from all of the crap and learning how to have an actual life.
She is interpreting this as a rejection of her on my part. Yesterday, she had to take my mother a few places, and in the car she had a big meltdown and lost it, told my mother she was never coming around again, didn't want to see me because I hate her, etc. Her "evidence" of this the fact that I am not home in the evenings very much, which she interpreted as I was intentionally avoiding her. The fact that I don't "do things" like grocery shopping with her anymore - i never did all that often, because if timing, etc. Both irrational, paranoid, and narcissistic thoughts.
The other "evidence" for this go around -- when she is my house and I am out riding in the evenings, she sees me go by the house several times, which she told my mother means that I don't want to come in the house until she leaves. The reality of this - it has nothing to do with her on any level, it's me doing final laps to get to the mileage goal had set for myself when heading out for the ride. This one actually both amused and annoyed me, because when I'm out there riding, I am not thinking about my sister or any of this garbage. I concentrate on my breathing, the music, the scenery, the mileage, and of course the traffic so I don't die! Wouldn't that just suck if I got killed now after all of this, working so hard NOT to go down?
So, I know I am asking more of a psychological question than a question about psychiatry, but what can I do about this. Personally, it doesn't bother that much, it does but I feel eventually this situation will come to a true boiling point and be resolved. But it is really hurtful to my mother, who will be 88 next month, and is currently in misery from contracting shingles and taking a lot if strong pain meds.
I feel absolutely no guilt over this, I didn't do anything at this juncture to cause this, I have just been doing my own thing and it has nothing, negative or positive, to do with her.
BTW, weight is still coming off, strength and stamina improving, and I got a compliment from a lady at the gym I don't even know, she said she could tell over the past two months how well I am doing just by seeing me. Too bad I didn't have the nerve to carry the conversation further - eventually. Not that any of this is relevant.
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Response to Denninmi (Original post)
Sun Dec 2, 2012, 01:02 PM
elleng (54,251 posts)
1. Do nothing as nothing to do,
as with somewhat similar situation in my family; decision confirmed today speaking w 'the problem's' father. Either they'll come around or they won't, and short of forcing them into therapy, which is unlikely for many reasons, there's nothing we can do but live with it. Sorry for your mother; glad she's got you.
Response to elleng (Reply #1)
Sun Dec 2, 2012, 02:06 PM
Denninmi (6,581 posts)
2. I kinda think so, too.
And just act perfectly normal when I do see her. The whole thing is dumb. I freely admit part of this is my fault, rebelling against the way my family has treated me for years - I regret some of my methods, such as the screaming matches, but I stand behind the principle, that I deserve to be treated like a grown man, not a teenage boy.
I think if I let her stew in her own juices, she'll eventually get tired of playing games.
In fact, it just hit me - the dynamic in my family is to never directly or rationally address a problem and talk it out. It's game playing, subterfuge, backstabbing, gossip, fighting.
Do you think Costco sells lamictal in the 5,000 tablet count Family Size?