REMOVING yourself from your FAMILY

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 26, 2010 12:55 AM GMT
    How many of you, who grew up with dysfunctional and degradating family members, have chosen to just not stay in contact with those people?

    I haven't spoken to my father in about four years, and before then just a couple of times on the phone at holidays. Picture Jack Nicholson in "The Shining."

    I think some people believe they must stay in contact with their family because, as the old adage goes, "they're your family." But if they REALLY pull you down, when there really is nothing good about having them in your life, when you know that they really don't care much about you or support you in your efforts, why do it?

    How about you?
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    Aug 26, 2010 12:57 AM GMT
    I agree. I've removed myself from people in my family who are completely fucked up, namely the ones in Southern California. To me "family" is people who stick around, not necessarily people who are related to you by blood.
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    Aug 26, 2010 12:59 AM GMT
    The only family members I talk to regularly are my mom and my nephew.
    I still love the others, but our interests are so different that we never have anything to talk about.
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    Aug 26, 2010 1:04 AM GMT
    I haven't spoken too my brother in years. last time i saw him or my niece was about 8 years ago
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    Aug 26, 2010 2:13 AM GMT
    i haven't spoken to my older brother since my mom died in '03. Apparently, i am 'dead to' him......not much diff in my life, except no tension from him anymore....can't really honestly say i miss him at all...
  • TristanLane

    Posts: 118

    Aug 26, 2010 3:56 AM GMT
    You should always hold on to your family because in the end family is all you truly have. In my opinion there are people that I have met in my life that will always be family to me and were not related. Some have even been better people than my actual family.

    I have one of those family that tends to never talk about their issues. The way of dealing with things is to pretend it never happened. Im not close to my family and I never have been. I still haven't really branched out on my own but when I do I know we will not keep in touch. So to answer your question..Yes! I will be removing myself from my family.
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    Aug 26, 2010 4:10 AM GMT
    I have only talked with my mother and a very few cousin's when I had to. Seriously considering ending even that involvement very soon.
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    Aug 26, 2010 4:17 AM GMT
    Divorced the ENTIRE (blood) family 2 yrs ago.. BEST thing I ever did was to finally free myself.

    They chose prop8 over me.. it was that simple! ( to act then and there)
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    Aug 26, 2010 4:24 AM GMT
    Yes i agree, sometimes its necessary, fortunately most of my family is cool with me and we can lean on eachother
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    Aug 26, 2010 4:25 AM GMT
    I have always been the black sheep of the family so I'm used to be being the outcast.
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    Aug 26, 2010 4:45 AM GMT
    Great topic but an awkward one I am sure.
    I too have that difficult family upbringing. Not much worth speaking about or looking back fondly upon. I decided - as an adult - I can actually choose who to have in my life and when. The holidays have always been an especially tension filled period. I observed that we were all there NOT because we wanted to be but because society told us we should want to be together then. I decided - I will choose when and where I involve the family in MY life. One of those choices - NOT during the holidays. The fact is I have a much more enjoyable time during that period with friends and their families than my own. I visit with my family during less stressful times during the year. Seems to work well for all of us - except when explaining to nosey outsiders.
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    Aug 26, 2010 4:49 AM GMT
    I'm so glad I'm not the only one who does this, or feels this way.
  • solak

    Posts: 493

    Aug 26, 2010 4:55 AM GMT
    really think the motto "blood is thicker than water" is highly overrated..

    ever since my dad passed, several of his brothers have been coming to me and my mom to ask for money indirectly, despite them not working.. they'd NEVER do that in front of my dad.

    my mom is too nice to say no sometimes so i've had to cut them off for my and her benefit.

    people who usually say "family first," etc are fortunate enough to have stable relatives..

    not everyone's so lucky and it's case dependent..
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 26, 2010 5:02 AM GMT
    About the only one in my family i keep in touch with is my mother and thats about it. I have two brothers, both of which put me through hell growing up, my younger brother stabbed me with a kitchen knife and i used to get beat up and picked on by the older brother. My father, never around so yeah... as far as the rest of the family, I never really existed to them so its kind of a second nature not to think much about any of em cept my mother who has consistently been there and did the best she could to raise 3 kids mostly on her own.
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    Aug 26, 2010 5:24 AM GMT
    I believe that real, true "family" members rarely grow up under the same roof or share the same DNA. I have a very loving family that I am crazy about and have no genetic connection to them what so ever. I have met all of my blood relatives and know them very well, which is precisely why I don't invite into my life.
  • safety43_mma1...

    Posts: 4251

    Aug 26, 2010 6:00 AM GMT
    i dont go home to much anymore because when i came out to my parents they told me i am welcome at their home but my partner wont be so it is a no brainer to me. i love them still but i wont be there is if the guy i fall for isnt.
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    Aug 26, 2010 6:31 AM GMT
    I have some good family members, and some bad ones. Sadly, the best family members I've had have passed on.....(grandparents plus an aunt and uncle). I've tried hard to get along with some of the bad ones, without much success (especially two spoiled, rotten, homophobic brothers). I'm planning on a future with a minimum or in some cases NO contact with the two or three family members who are the most ungrateful and vicious. What I've learned is this: Continuously trying (through kindness and good works) to be nice to bad people with the hope that they'll be nice in return just does not work. This is a waste of time! A bright counselor suggested that being nice to such people make might actually make things worse. I choose to spend time with the good people in my life and drop anyone who doesn't bring me happiness.

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  • EricLA

    Posts: 3461

    Aug 26, 2010 6:44 AM GMT
    My father hasn't been in my life for about eight years. Just a bit of history here, my father divorced my mother when I was 18. I stayed in contact with him, but three years later when I came out the distance began to grow between us. At the time, I thought it was my coming out that caused it, but my older sister encountered the same issues. It just turns out my father is very self-involved. Over the next few years, we had steps forward and steps back. Finally, at a party my aunt (my father's sister) held following their parents' memorial service, my father started to berate my mother. He was blaming her for the damaged relationship between him and me and my sister. (My father is horrible at acknowledging his responsibility.) At first we were dumbfounded and taken aback. And round one was over before it sank in what was going on. Then the anger bubbled up inside me. Just then, he turned around and started to berate my mother again. I wanted to strangle or hit my father. I'm not a violent guy, but I would have done it. However, I, unlike my father, recognized I was at my grandparents' memorial service. I crossed the distance between my parents, and as my father opened his mouth, I faced him and put a finger in his face and said, "Don't you dare make this day about you" A wave of emotion crossed his face. He stepped back. And he replied, "I hope this is the last I see of any of you." And he walked out of the door. So much for steps forward. How does one come back from something like that? So, I've granted him his wish and I have had no contact with him since that day. Is my relationship with him the way I want it to be? No. But, it will have to take one of the most sincere apologies ever given for him to make up for that. And I just don't see that happening.
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    Aug 26, 2010 6:47 AM GMT
    The only immediate family member that I get along well with is my mother and she's currently at mid-stage of Alzheimer's. When my father died about 4 years ago, the dysfunction that had long existed, bloomed like a freshly fertilized and watered garden.

    Minimal contact that limited to functional discussions is the most that I'll do. I no longer need deal with active deceptions, rationalizations, addictions, and the competitive misery competitions.

    I get along just fine with most of my cousins, aunts and uncles.

    My major approach is to only have people in my life that are responsible, dependable, honest, intelligent, funny and kind. I've got plenty of friends that meet those requirements. In fact I've many friends that I aspire to be more like. Conversely, while I used to succumb and embrace the existing family dynamic (see 'apple not falling far from tree') I chose instead to change myself instead. I've given my friends the instruction to shoot me if I ever revert to that way of living. It's a progressive process.

    Of course, moving 3000 miles away from them helps too.
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    Aug 26, 2010 8:55 AM GMT
    I'm currently going through a separation. I just moved to Los Angeles, which is something I've been wanting to do for years, and something my family actively tried to prevent me from doing. I told my mom that I can't talk to her right now, because I need support and understand. If we talked, she would just tell me that I'm screwing up my life and I should move home, preferably back into her cervix.
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    Aug 26, 2010 9:01 AM GMT
    when i come out, if they don't accept me i'll be better off without them. anyway i intend of going as far as i can from them
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 26, 2010 9:06 AM GMT
    TristanLane saidYou should always hold on to your family because in the end family is all you truly have.


    Such bullshit.
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    Aug 26, 2010 9:17 AM GMT
    reppaT said
    TristanLane saidYou should always hold on to your family because in the end family is all you truly have.


    Such bullshit.


    Yeah, but if you read the rest of what he said, he specified he meant family not by blood, but more like adopted people you can lean on
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 26, 2010 9:54 AM GMT
    I consider the family I lived with for nearly two decades to be my foster family. Ten years ago I told them I was going to leave that family and only one person believed me. I did exactly that about 8 years ago. When they die it will be no impact on me and I will not even attend the funeral/s. I have missed one of their parents who began the hate and abuse and never looked back.

    I have a new family, though my parents have died. It was hard to lose the ones who really cared about me. I still have great siblings though.

    Blood means shit, you not only choose your friends, you can have a family choose you.
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    Aug 26, 2010 10:31 AM GMT
    Nope. I remove myself from my relatives yrs ago since I bury my mother and grandmother