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My BIGGEST problem... and the biggest LESSON I've learned 

Throughout these 12 months i have encountered an enormous problem. This problem makes me angry, keeps me up at night, and stresses me out even more. My problem is family. I know, I know. I should be thankful to have a support system. What happens though, when my support system starts to act more like a general in the Army? You see my issue? I've never been one to be told what to do, that's one of the main reasons why I left the ex. So, when my family starts with their "advice" I start to cringe. Literally, their advice, or one family member in particular, is always asking me "OMG! What are you going to do?!" or "I think you should (fill in the blank)" or "My friend went through a divorce and she did this so you need to call that lawyer of yours and get her to do that. NOW!" or she calls me up hysterical, "I just can't sleep! I just can't deal with my life knowing you're going through so much! How could they do this to us?!" This family member also likes to make little insults, but they're clever insults. I call them the "Ninja Insults." They're insults, made with a laugh and a smile. They're insults that are meant to really dig. The other insults aren't necessarily insults, but they make me annoyed. Like telling me what kind of car payment I can afford, rent I can afford, how I need to budget, and other stupid silly things.The most embarrassing thing that happened was when my family member offered me a ride to a meeting with my lawyer because my car was in the shop. I was in my lawyers office and this family member comes storming in and starts to ask questions on my behalf! I was livid. I'm talking, smoke coming out of my ears, face red, hands shaking, and talking through my teeth. I just had enough. I met my breaking point. I was so tired of being treated like a child who has had no experience with life. I was sick of people handling my problems, when I never asked them too. I don't know if it's me pushing back and trying to gain control over my life or what it is really. But when I start to feel like i''m being controlled, I go into survival mode. I make it very clear I'm a grown woman, an adult and I can handle my life. But, I'm a very sarcastic person and I have a very witty sense of humor, so needless to say, I wasn't taken so seriously. After months of this behavior from this family member, (who, by the way, works in the same office as my ex mother-in-law and this family member of course takes it upon herself to insert herself in MY tornado of issues and completely flips waffles at the XMIL whenever the X starts doing his circus tricks.) So, after months of this, I finally spoke. I stuck up for myself! I felt like a balloon being poked with a pin. Except I didn't fly around the room, I just let it out point blank. It just felt GOOD. I soon realized I could apply this new attitude to a lot people in my life, poor schmucks. I wasn't worried about them leaving anymore. I realized if they take offense to me telling them how I will not be treated, then I'll hold the door open for them for them walk out. I realized, Hey I'm going through enough and some of these people are just feeding off my drama. They're literally twisting what's happening to me and somehow making it apply to them. (I'm still confused about that) I need to set boundaries or tell them I can't be around them until this is over. It's time to take care of me. It's time to not be scared of the erratic reactions because frankly, I don't care. i learned from all of this, I control who is around me. I control how I'm treated. If people have a problem with it, well, this is MY life and I have a VOICE. Lesson learned.
by PetalsandThorns86  4 Posts 

Posted on 2/2/2013 11:41 AM
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Comments for "My BIGGEST problem... and the biggest LESSON I've learned"  (7) (You must be logged in to answer)




Hello there!
I just have to say I am very proud of you for standing up for yourself. Reading your post was like reading the story of my life as of late. I have a few family members like that. They acted great to my face, but behind my back was another story. They even went as far as keeping my ex as thier friend. It's just my Aunt, and her two daughters that have taken his side. The rest of my family knows better at who was at fault here, and either way I am the family member not him so I didn't matter anyways. I completely understand where your coming from. They also treated me like I was ignorant, and couldn't make it own my own. I type this while I am enjoying my college degree, my new job, and my own house LOL. So good things come to those who wait, and you just show them you are in charge of your life here.. and nothing they can say or do will tear you down any longer! :)
by NewDay99   39 Posts
Posted on 2/4/2013 8:00 PM
1





Developing a backbone is a great feeling and will prove useful in all life's situations.    If you don't stand up you're lying down and that's an invitation for others to walk all over you.   Welcome to an upright world!  You're going to be just fine.
by timless   1833 Posts
Posted on 2/3/2013 9:44 AM
3





I have found I need to change my interaction with my family. I don't share a lot of details. Without the details they don't have enough information to make suggestions. Most of the time they mean well, but I am not ready to hear it from them. 

When I don't want to be feeling angry towards Jerkface, I can put it aside for a while. BUT, they might be angry and start telling me how rotten he is... they are trying to be supportive but I don't want to hear it right then. I have learned to tell them exactly that. "I understand you are angry/hurt/sad/whatever, but right now I need a breather from all of that mess. We just have to talk about something else or I will need to go." 

Hope that helps.

Squirrel
by JustMe4Now   2159 Posts
Posted on 2/3/2013 7:03 AM
0





*SIBS (not sobs)...Freudian???
by Iam   7272 Posts
Posted on 2/2/2013 5:55 PM
1





I have a large family.  Some "get it", some don't.  My brother, who lives 5 hours away by PLANE, sees me infrequently.  So when I got the email the other day that invited me, my mom & stepdad, and all my sobs to supper and a hockey game because he was going to be in town, I was really excited! 

 

Then I found out he invited one additional person...my ex.  I have been divorced 4 yrs.  My ex cheated on me, accused me of child abuse, and try to screw me out of tens of thousands of dollars in the property settlement by lying about appraised value.  My brother doesn't know this, but I'm thinking maybe he should!  I've never badmouthed my ex to him (I save that for y'all) but STILL.  I felt like I'd been kicked in the gut. 

 

I emailed him back, let him know how I felt, and if he wanted the details I'm willing to share.  But talk about CLUELESS...

by Iam   7272 Posts
Posted on 2/2/2013 5:54 PM
1





I have to be honest, my family are the LEAST supportive pople know. they all have ideas of who they think am, what they think I should be doing, and who they think my ex is. My brother speaks pleasantly about me when I am not around, but never will talk to me about my divorce. (Although he did tell me I have "tone" and that's probably the source of my issues with my ex.) My sister pretty much just wants to know "you're really happier now, right?. 
My mom has been quite ill this year, and so we have been forced into frequent interactions. this is generally not good. My sister and I have had 3 arguments already. She wants to control everything- including the medical care dspite my 20+ years of nursing experience.
I have a few very close friends who listen, are honest, and are truly helpful. I need to stick with them. for me, family is just full of judgement, expectatons and control issues. I need to care less about what they tink, and stand alone and be good with that.Good luck!
by liz12   619 Posts
Posted on 2/2/2013 2:58 PM
1





Honey, bullies come in all shapes and sizes. Their tactics vary. Confronting them is the only way to get them to back down. Confrontation doesn't always mean nuclear weapons, which is something that most folks don't learn during their educations.

I'm about twice your age, and my father, bless his heart, while I was going through the divorce process, told me what and how to do, yelling into the phone from a couple hundred miles away. I took a breath and told him, gently, that if he thought he could run my life better than I did, he was welcome to come out to where I lived and give it a shot. He stopped. 

He would also rant and rave when I went to visit. He said something about how I seemed to be taking it all, including the fact that my kids have pretty much written me off (they went over to the dark side with their dad). I replied that it was heartbreaking beyond belief, and that if I let myself think about it much or really feel the pain, I wouldn't be able to function. I have to do that in specific time and space - when I'm by myself. 

Another thing I've noticed is that folks, especially women, are uncomfortable with seeing other people in pain. If they don't tell you to get over it or take you out to play, they turn the focus to themselves - they don't have to deal with your stuff if they can get everyone wrapped up in theirs. 

The best folks to be with with whenever the chips are down are the ones who are able to be with you and let you be who you are without judging. I had one friend who was like that, and I consider myself blessed. 

We're here for you.
by NotJulieG   3248 Posts
Posted on 2/2/2013 2:22 PM
2







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