What is your relationship like with your 1st cousins?

Discussion in 'Family of Origin' started by Wish, Jul 14, 2018.

  1. Wish

    Wish Active Member

    This describes me with every single one of my cousins. I felt very inferior to them all.

    I think I understand and same here.

    That is a good way of looking at it. I will definitely adopt that reasoning along with many others I have.

    Copa, you are one in a million. She only wishes she could be like you. I wish I could have half of your intelligence.

    You're welcome and how many cousins do you have?
  2. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    On the paternal side, from the town in which I live now, many cousins, as my father was from a family with 7 kids. But some have died and the rest dispersed except the female cousin I describe. I guess altogether there were a dozen cousins at least, besides my sister, brother and I.. Holidays were a big deal when my dad's parents were alive. But then when they died, each sibling became the head of their own family

    On the maternal side only 2 cousins.

    My sister and I were among the youngest cousins. Some were old enough to be my parents. That's part of it.

    And with my father's family, my mother's family were a despised ethnic group. So I was too.

    Complicated .Painful.
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2018
  3. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    This begs the question what is family?

    Because someone gave birth to somebody scientifically your DNA ....that is family?

    That is not my definition. Mine is who you feel connected to, whom you love, who loves you. Except for normal human compassion, why would anyone care deeply about the life of a stranger? I cant think of one reason to contact a stranger just because by chance they were born to somebody biologically connected to somebody I was. So what?i would never think to apologize that things werent different.

    I would never think I was not as good as somebody else either. I used to. Slowly that faded away. Copa you should not feel inferior to ANYONE. So your cousin made more money than you? How does that make her a better person? Please explain. How does that make you inferior?

    Wish, I define family way differently than most people do.

    Long ago we did a family thread here and I got most of my story out and my frustration with it. Copa and Scent of Cedar listened to me.

    We listwened to each other. That helped as much as therapy. Writing it out stopped most of my inner sadness about my DNA collection, as I call them. A family loves and nurtures you and you dont need to be related in a scientific way.

    Because of the treatment of myself from babyhood on, I have never felt close connections to anyone in my family except for my grandmother .i i created my own amazing family of choice. They are all the family I need.

    I have come from a miserable, disturbed 30 to a contented peaceful 64. The peaceful part started in my early 40s.
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    Last edited: Jul 16, 2018
  4. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Copa, I run too. The alternative is to try to work it out by talking. But very often, when people think you are bad or inferior or wrong they dont listen. Or they started telling you that it was your fault and why. And to them it may be true.

    My family has never been good at working things out. Im not either. So yes I run. Its a useful alternative in my opinion to being invalidated and crapped on.

    I dealt with dysfunction the best way I can. Its not like my parents ever taught us any getting along skills.....my parents taught us nothing about anything except fighting. And family patterns have been solidified. The little DNA I have is not flexible.

    So it is what it is
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2018
  5. Wish

    Wish Active Member

    These are questions that have plauged me my entire life and questions that I have asked him and flat out told him. He flat out refuses to hear it or address it. Absolutely refuses. He wants me to go to these things regardless of how I feel and yes, it kills me not knowing why he wants me to go. I think it's because of a pride thing. I think he knows how they treat me and my daughter and he want's to show the other family members that we matter and we are just as much as part of the extended family as anyone else and it is a very noble thing if that's the case but he doesn't do anything else to try and fix it which is what devestates me. So let's say I am getting pressured by my grandfather to go to Christmas dinner at my extended family home, I say no I am not going and then he gets upset. It's the usual routine and then I say "Pop, why would I go when everyone ignores me and daughter. So I can look at the walls while everyone else is being social and having a great time? And the only time they do talk to me is to cut me down in some way?" His response "You are being ridiculous Lisa!!!!! Absolutely crazy!!!! You don't want to go , fine!!!! I don't give a bleep!" and then storms off or hangs up the phone whichever way we are having the covnersation at the time. He never just sits and talks with me about it. He doesn't want to acknowledge whats going on and that's fine, I have NEVER forced him to or even asked them to. Nothing. I never asked them to choose sides but if I did, I would have gotten a big F U. But you would THINK that if he wants me to go so badly that he would at least have a discussion with the OTHER side of the family but I really don't want him to do that anyway, I just wanted to be left alone about it. But I felt if he was going to give me hell for it, why not give them hell TOO? Why did I always get the pressure put onto me????? However, I think the reason why he doesn't say anything to the others is because my grandmother would ream him a new one. She absolultely despises anything like that. My grandparents are very dysfunctional themselves. It all started with them. My grandfather was/is the true Dr. Jekel and Mr. Hyde. Very angry. Very emtoinally abusive but also very loving and would do anything for his kids. You just didn't know what day what personality you were gonna catch. It's just like an onion. Numerous layers to this family of mine.
  6. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Wish, nobody ever talked to me about why my mother disliked me. The little feedback I would get was sort of "I dont know" to "it was your fault" to " you were abusive to her." It was crazy. An infant abusive to her...lol. when older I fought back. Guess I was supposed to take it.

    My sister, whom I decided never to speak to again, spends half her time trying to diagnose me with horrendous disorders that I dont have. I have been in therapy most of my adult life and nobody but her diagnosed me with these things or ebven close. But, hey, she is a teachers aide so maybe she knows more than psychiatrists from Mayo Clinic? She posts her stuff online. I stopped reading her.

    I emotionally left most of my family after I divorced at around 35. I stuck around physically and spent years trying to make things right with my mother. My spiritual beliefs are that you try all you can while you are both here, but sometimes the other soul wont accept any attempt to solve issue until the afterlife. I wasnt even sure what I did wrong but I sent her love letters with apologies for ???. I am sorry I tried and sorry I did not cut off sister sooner. There was no hope. I loved them very much but feel both had a limited capacity to love back.

    Your grandfather is disrespecting you when he wont answer you and it is rude of him to hang up on you for any reason. Why do you get so upset if he gets angry? I was like you once. I dont care anymore if I know I am right for myself and others get angry. In my current, better state of mind, my best advice to you is to tell grandfather gently, "I love you very much, but for reasons I have expressed, I am not going." If he hangs up, he hangs up..Its not his life you live. It is yours. Go on with your life, away from those cousins who abuse you and your daughter. Your grandfather will not stay angry forever. If he does, you have to wonder if he is capable of empathy. Is his approval worth your angst?

    How you look to others is none of his business nor should YOU go for that reason.

    Love and light!
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2018
  7. Wish

    Wish Active Member

    Absolutely. It is very upsetting when he yells or hangs up on me. It's the story of our lives. So I did stop caring a long time ago but every once in a while it still gets to you. Especially if it's an important event like a wedding or God for bid funeral that might be coming soon. As much as I may dislike my cousins, I do not ever wish them physical pain or death. Are they awful for the way they treat us? Yes. But they are not monsters. Only child severe abusers/rapists/killers or severe animal abusers deserve a slow painful death in my opinion. My cousins might be up-ity snobs who have said mean things to us and about us but they are not bad people and if God gave me the power to take away my cousin's pain and suffering, I would have it all taken away in a heartbeat. I would choose that he gets to live and live a healthy life. He doesn't deserve what he is going through. I wish him lots of healing and life. The last thing I want for him is to die, especially a painful death but aside from that, I really don't want to go their funeral or associate with them.

    Swot, I am going to use some of the words you gave me to use to tell my grandfather. I think I needed fresh new ways to tell him how I feel. The words you gave me are matter of fact and kind at the same time. Thank you.
  8. Wish

    Wish Active Member

  9. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Wish, I am honored.

    Wish, we can stand our ground without being unkind. It is not unkind to disagree with anothers point of view nor to do something other than somebody we love wants us to do.

    Wish, most people are good. I dont know why my mother hated me but she wasnt mean to everyone. Nor is my sister. Are they evil?

    Maybe pretty mean to me, but on some level I am sure I hurt them. I know my mother saw herself in me..and she did t like herself. And her mother, my dear grandmother, favored me, loved me to the moon, gave me the unconditional love that maybe she felt she never got. I was grandmas favorite grandchild hands down and grandmas favorite child hands down was my mothers brother. Maybe this hurt her. Also I was the.kid who called her out on her dysfunction.

    My sister says I hurt her. I believe I did. I am not sure why or when except for one incident. We never talked about these things, but that does not mean they are horrid people nor that I am horrid. I did not wish my mother to die of brain cancer. It made me very sad. I wish my sister no ill. I want with all I have in me for her to find the love she wants with a man who is kind. Inside me, I hope the best for all.

    But this doesnt mean I can be around my sister. She hurt me too deeply too many times and called the cops on me for no reason and will NEVER admit she ever made a mistake. I dont want that in my life. Cant risk more cops. Im almost 65. I dont need cops coming by because she is angry at me so she calls the cops to punish me. She never has to hear from me again. And vice versa.

    You can wish the entire world no ill (I wish all to be happy) but I still choose who I am comfortable with regarding attending big affairs. You can send a gift for a wedding and send well wishes and not show up. There are heartfelt condolence cards too.

    That is enough.

    You are obviously a kind, loving person
    If you fear going to a family event, I for one believe you have reason. Trust your gut.

    Do not overplay DNA. My daughter marries next year and is not inviting my sister or brother, the only two DNA left for me. They wont care and they were never in her life. I may add that three of my awesome kids are adopted. I would not trade any of them for my DNA.

    DNA does not mean family. Do I need to repeat it? DNA does not mean family. :)

    DNA isnt even our flesh and.blood. We have seperate flesh and blood. My kids and husband are so dear they are my heart. THEY are my flesh and blood and heart. A woman somehow DNA related to my dad who I have never seen is NOT my flesh and blood and not in my heart, which is most important to me.

    Love has nothing to fo with DNA.

    And Wish and Copa you two kind ladies with hearts of gold are inferior to nobody. Nobody.
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2018
  10. Wish

    Wish Active Member

    It seems as though your sister was given/carried the torch from your mother in regards to how your sister treats and feels about you. I think the reason your sister might be so upset is because she really can't find a good reason to dislike/hate you, so she has to constantly make up/create reasons in order to keep your mother's beliefs alive, valid and justified. Plus, it's always a power play in these situations. She feels this gives her the upper hand over you but you see how her life is, especially her love life. I can feel nothing but pity for this woman, your sister. Anyone who constantly needs to put someone else down and make them feel low, means they are not happy at all in their own lives. They have nothing. Absolutely nothing but misery. So they feed off of what was left behind. What a cruel thing for your mother to have done, passing hatred. That's really what it is. I am sorry to say, and I hate to speak unkind of one's mother, but your mother seemed to have been extremely petty and for that I am sorry Swot.
  11. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Wish, thank you. My mother was Queen and the others followed her. They dont think they did but they did. My sister was very neglected and now claims to have attachment disorder. I think she does, but she is blaming it a lot on me. I teased her a lot as a kid. But my mother let me do it. My mom was negligent in the nurture department to us all. She ignored my sister and screamed at me. My brother was the only one she liked really and he has never had a live in long term relationship so I have to believe he has attachment issues too. I am the only one with a healthy husband and family. Thank you, Grandma.

    I stopped trying to figure out my sister years ago. I am happy and she is not. I have no desire to diagnose her....however it is no secret she has had anorexia most of her life and i fear one of her kids does too. But maybe not. Not my business. I worried about this kid having it for many years. Lots of over excerising and my sister has never eaten a full meal in front of me. If she weighs 100 lbs. she diets. I blame this on my mothers lack of attention to her.

    My sister can't NOT blame my mother. My mother did get close to her later on. But the damage was done.

    Anyhow I ended up in the best place of all. Maybe she is jealous. Maybe she is confused. Maybe....who cares. I do feel sorry for her life, but she caused it. She left her husband, she dated a married man and many others who could not love her, especially her latest loser of eight years.

    I get tired thinking about all that.

    She doesnt have to like me. I dont have to like her. She is just a DNA connection who is not a part of my.loving family. I wish her well. I dont like it when she is sad. Also I never ever would have thought to call the cops on her just because i was mad at her.

    Worst part for her she is 58 and first starting therapy . Time is not on her side for learning how to love and finding it. I dont know why she didnt go earlier. I did. My brother did. Maybe she thought anorexia and intimacy problems were normal. I cant help sadly feeling that it is too late for her to have that great life I have.
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2018
  12. Wish

    Wish Active Member

    Every older sister or brother teases their younger siblings. It's probably progresses pass teasing the more dysfunctional the parents of said children are. How silly to hold a grudge about something like that.
  13. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    I am in a place with poor reception. Will edit later
  14. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    I teased her a lot but you are right. My mother could have and should have stopped any teasing. That is her job. I was the child. Left unsupervised there is usually teasing.
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2018
  15. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    My first cousins and I are FB friends. That's it. I really don't know them now that we're all adults. Some FB more than others so I know more about their lives. Not that FB is an true indicator, but we are able to keep in touch in a way that didn't exist twenty years ago.
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  16. Wish

    Wish Active Member

    Since my Grandfather was a major element in this conversation, I wanted to share that I just found out 17 minutes ago that my grandfather has cancer......they found cancer cells or whatever in his urine (cytology). He is 88 years old and is refusing any futher investigation or treatment because he thinks he is too old and no treatment could help him. My grandmother, my uncle and my mother are waitng until he calms down to see if he will change mind. I just told my daughter, my Grandfather was her father figure growing up, as well as mine. I don't think she is even digesting the news or believes it yet. I want to know what kind of cancer he has and how bad it is but he doesn't want to know. I don't blame him but not knowing is very distressing for me and will be for my daughter to. So now we got my cousin , his grandson, dying and now he is dying. Dear God.
  17. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    I am sorry wish.
  18. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Wish, there are no appropriate words of comfort that will help you. Do remember any choice he makes is his own desire and that we need to let people end their lives their way. He has had a very long and I suspect good life with much love. I know two people who refused chemo. One was in her 40s when she was diagnosed with cancer. I thought sheswould die fast. She
    is at least 56 now and still healthy! I know of a woman neighbor who is 68 who also said no she was not up to chemo. I see her sitting outside with her son and her grands and of yet she looks healthy. You never know.

    You will likely get more info later and he could change his mind about treatment. He is still in shock.

    I know you are devestated and all I can offer you are cyber hugs and share my belief that none of us really ever die. I know my grandma and dad are still with me. I believe our consciousness and spirit lives on.

    Light and love!
  19. Wish

    Wish Active Member

    Yes, I am trying

    I really needed to hear this, I hope so much this is true with my Grandfather

    I hope so, I live so far away and have very little money to travel. Any information at all would help me plan better to visit and I am going to visit soon with or without information. I was planning to go in the fall anyway.

    Thank you. My grandfather is the only one who gives a true damn about me and my daughter. When we lose him, we will lose our only true love and support system that we ever had.
  20. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Im so sorry dear. My grandma was the only person in my FOO who made me feel special and loved so I get it.

    Believe it or not (I did not once) there are amazing people out there who can love you as much as he does. You can make a family of choice It is only a matter of finding the right people. Do not give up hope because your story isnt over yet. Nor is grandfathers.

    When you are more yourself, maybe we can all give you ideas about where to find amazing people. I did not expect it to ever happen. You are still young. You will have a good life.

    Meanwhile be sure to take good care of yourself...eat well, sleep, relax. This cancer may be something like prostate cancer. I think my dad had it for twenty years. It doesnt kill older people.
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2018