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View Full Version : We don't know what we are doing that day.


purple
04-14-2015, 04:09 AM
If the response you had every time you tried to make plans with someone was 'I don't know what we are/might be doing that day' what would you think? How would you feel?

mum2only1
04-14-2015, 05:37 AM
If you are talking about your brother I'd be furious as my brother used to do this to my mother every time school break came up. He never knew what was going on and left it all up to my sister n law
If you are talking about a friend. I would probably think they were unorganized and also made it a habit of saying that to everyone that asks her to get together.
I say that occasionally because I really do not know off the top of my head what we are doing.
You could be sarcastic and say,"Get a calendar with your schedule and keep it in your handbag. When you get a chance...please pencil me into your oh so busy schedule so we can get together."
Purple, what are you thinking about this and how are you feeling about this?

snooch
04-14-2015, 11:36 AM
I'd let this go once or twice. After that, I'd say, "Well, I'm asking you to do something with me - can that be what you're doing that day?" with a smile, a gentle nudge in that direction. And if there were still push-back or the excuse kept being used, I would feel like I had all the answer I needed about their priorities.

I tend to live by the saying, "When someone shows you who they are, believe them." Someone repeatedly putting me off every time I try to make plans with them tells me that I am not a priority to them, and I feel more strongly about having them in my life than they feel about having me in theirs. I would believe what they are showing me, and I would have to begin to change my expectations of them. Because, there's really no other choice. You can't control them, you can only control yourself.

I'm so sorry they have been doing this to you. It's so much worse when it's family. :(

:hug:

DIANAC
04-14-2015, 01:23 PM
If I get this response EVERY TIME and I still keep asking this same question, then I am a slow learner.
Next time, I would say, I would like to see you on such date. If you can't make it, then tell me when we can meet.

katzankatz
04-14-2015, 03:42 PM
What they said ^. If it happens often, I'd draw the conclusion that they just don't want to see me. A person can something like "I'm not sure, I need to check with Dh and look at the calendar, and I'll get back to you", and then actually DO that. But if all the person says is "I'm not sure", and then does not get back to you, the answer is no, i don't want to see you.

It's hard to be rejected like that continually. If you've already discussed the problem with the person, made sure it's not something about you that bothers them, like Snooch says, adjust your expectations. You can only go so far with some people. If it truly is just how they are, then you don't have to let yourself be overly upset because you already know how it goes with you and them. It shouldn't be a surprise when they refuse you. I wouldn't necessarily give up on them, wouldn't stop reaching out and being polite, just lower your expectations.

purple
04-14-2015, 06:00 PM
Yes, it's my brother.

My mum had a full argument with him on Monday over the phone with me in the other room.

It's not that he doesn't have his diary to hand, its that they REFUSE to make plans... and his standard answer is 'we don't know what we are doing that day'

My parents will invite them to dinner say in a weeks time and they get the reply 'we don't know what we are doing on that day'

After my brother made the smart mouthed remark about me not giving my nephew his birthday present (even though I was in bed UNABLE TO MOVE) I asked when I could see them and I got told 'we don't know what we are doing each day'

My mum questioned him about it and when she asked him could he not just say that they were coming to dinner that night and that be their plan he said they don't work like that and something else might come up.

It makes me, and my parents feel like we are not worth their time. That something better might come up.

I guess that is our answer. It just hurts. I feel like I don't know my brother anymore. We were not brought up this way.

I feel rejected by my own brother, like I am not good enough for him... but then maybe I should have learnt this a long time ago when he pretty much begged me to not join the drama group he was in as he didn't want me there.

I've not spoken to him about it as he won't see me. I don't know what I'm meant to have done wrong, but we never get invited to ANYTHING. They go to the beach with the other side of the family, they do out for the day with the other side of the family.
It might be own (lack of) self esteem but its like they are embarrassed by us. Yet somehow we were good enough when A was a little child and they needed the free child care.

I really have had enough of it, and so have my parents, thats why mum had it out with him on the phone.

I get that people change, he has his own little family unit and that is his number one priority, I wouldn't expect any different but when you try to get in contact and make plans and every single time get told 'we don't know what we will be doing that day' it really is a clear message...

I guess I just needed to know I wasn't reading more into it with my paranoid mind...

It's sad... it makes me feel very sad and I don't know how low to set my expectations and not sure how many times I can keep asking for it to be thrown back in my face.

snooch
04-14-2015, 06:11 PM
I'm so sorry purple. I know how hurtful this is. :(

I tend to think it's not your brother, but his wife. Does she run the show, so to speak, in their family? It sounds like she prioritizes her side of the family and not his, and he is going along with it.

I think at this point I would drop him an email, or send him a paper letter, spelling it all out the way you have to us. How it makes you feel like you are not a priority, how hurtful it is to see them prioritizing other people, how you feel like you are constantly begging them to see their family -- and then put the ball in his court.

"I love you and miss you, and want to spend time with you, but I can't keep setting myself up to be hurt and disappointed, so I'm putting the ball in your court. I hope that you'll get in touch and make plans to spend time with us."

And then, don't reach out anymore, lower your expectations, take measures to protect yourself - hide their updates on FB if you have to.

:hug:

purple
04-14-2015, 06:47 PM
I'm so sorry purple. I know how hurtful this is. :(

I tend to think it's not your brother, but his wife. Does she run the show, so to speak, in their family? It sounds like she prioritizes her side of the family and not his, and he is going along with it.

I think at this point I would drop him an email, or send him a paper letter, spelling it all out the way you have to us. How it makes you feel like you are not a priority, how hurtful it is to see them prioritizing other people, how you feel like you are constantly begging them to see their family -- and then put the ball in his court.

"I love you and miss you, and want to spend time with you, but I can't keep setting myself up to be hurt and disappointed, so I'm putting the ball in your court. I hope that you'll get in touch and make plans to spend time with us."

And then, don't reach out anymore, lower your expectations, take measures to protect yourself - hide their updates on FB if you have to.

:hug:

Yes, she runs the show. From a child she was never told no. She had what she wanted, when she wanted, how she wanted it and it's been the same since she met my brother.

He was never like this with previous g/fs but with her it was.

She can't stand seeing A with my dad 'it hurts too much' so A is denied any grandfather.

He had admitted to my mum he sometimes does what he needs to 'for a quiet life'

But this does all really hurt. At lot. To hear him say that they do not have the money to be chasing around coming down here (I live 20 minutes away) but seeing them do to places near here (the DIY store, one of the supermarkets, one of the trail woods etc) and then are able to spend the weekend out of the county and the fuel that would have taken, or gone 30 hours drive away and gone 'shopping' or bought 18 birthday presents for their nieces 18th birthday party, but 5 on fuel to come and see me when I was unable to get out of bed was not possible. And to hear him throw the fact that my mum spent 8 weeks down here with me and 'how did that make HIM feel' when she was here because I couldn't even put my own socks and underwear on is just terribly hurtful.

I honestly don't think he understood, or wanted to understood, or was not allowed to understand how sick I was... like I was putting it on, making it up, faking it... Who puts themselves through a scary operation and takes all those drugs for the fun on it... seriously!

I think you are right in your suggestion... I am at the point of finding out when they will be out and taking A's birthday present and Easter egg over and leaving it by the door with a note with something like 'I can't keep asking when I can see you and keep being knocked back. It hurts too much. You know where I am when you need me.' If I send something too wordy I will get accused of being 'over emotional'. Yes he did tell my mum that once when she has tried to bring this up before.

And I am going to hide my SIL's updates on Facebook as seeing photos of them having lovely family days out and how lucky they are to have such a wonderful family just makes me angry. But I have to wait until I see the next one as I hide the last one when it was all about how wonderful Godmothers are as I was on the verge of hitting something. I nearly hide her updates from then, but made the mistake of hiding that one story and I can't seem to work out how to just hide someone without seeing one of their notifications first...

purple
04-14-2015, 07:06 PM
Just found the setting on Facebook to 'unfollow' so I've done that now... It feels good. And I can honestly say the same thing I say to a couple other people 'not everything comes up on my Facebook feed anymore'
It's not a lie and I don't have to explain myself.

Virginia
04-14-2015, 07:10 PM
That's very hurtful, Purple. I'd feel hurt if I were in your shoes. I hope you guys can reconcile and repair your relationship, but like others have said, it's on him now.

mum2only1
04-14-2015, 07:32 PM
Purple...your family sounds like mine. Your brother sounds like mine...your sister n law...just like mine. ugh!
My sister n law only liked her family. Didn't like my mom or dad. It hurt so much! My brother allowed it and it was awful.
The only way to get through it is to step away. Do what you said you'd do...drop the stuff at the door and leave a quick note. The wife is the culprit.
Just reading your situation makes me see red because of all my brother did to my parents, me and my brother.
Your mother needs to write him a letter telling him exactly what she thinks and that be the end of it.
Your dad was like my dad. Just wanted things quiet.
Why can't wives of husbands be nice to both families? I cater to my in-laws...and I would do so if my parents and siblings were around because I know how important it is for both sides.
May I ask if your brother and wife are Christians?
My brother and sister n law are not Christians. They say they are saved, but they never do anything to grow.
All you can do is pray for God to convict their hearts. I don't know. I am not good with this and sort of gave up a long time ago.
My mom wrote my brother several letters over the years which didn't help, but she was able to release some emotions.
I know how hard this is on your family.

purple
04-14-2015, 07:40 PM
My brother was brought up the same as me but I don't know where he is at with his faith. My SIL I know she does not believe. That is perfectly clear. We are not even allowed to ASK if we can take A to things like a Christingle service... Yet 'Godmothers always have love in their heart' ugh! It makes me sick.

I'm going to give it a week and see if the conversation mum had with him on Monday has any impact but after that it's dropped to their door saying they know where I am. I also need to let my mum know what I'm going to do and make sure she is OK with it.

I drove home almost feeling like I was an only child this evening with the comments he makes and how he treats us.

mum2only1
04-14-2015, 09:55 PM
My brother was brought up the same as me but I don't know where he is at with his faith. My SIL I know she does not believe. That is perfectly clear. We are not even allowed to ASK if we can take A to things like a Christingle service... Yet 'Godmothers always have love in their heart' ugh! It makes me sick.

I'm going to give it a week and see if the conversation mum had with him on Monday has any impact but after that it's dropped to their door saying they know where I am. I also need to let my mum know what I'm going to do and make sure she is OK with it.

I drove home almost feeling like I was an only child this evening with the comments he makes and how he treats us.

He will regret it one day.

purple
04-15-2015, 04:09 AM
He will regret it one day.

This is my fear and my mum tried to say this to him on Monday but she just gets told she is being 'emotional' but they don't even see what they are doing.

Last night I dreamt I sent A his presents with a letter saying how very sorry we were not at his party but I could not move and for some reason his mummy and daddy do not understand how poorly I was, that I have tried to come and see him but it feels like I am not important enough to mummy and daddy to put time aside for, that I love him deeply and the time I was allowed to look after him when mummy and daddy needed help was precious and I don't know what I did in that time that was so wrong to now be seemingly cut out from their life but I wish I could make it right as every time I see Elgar the Elk it makes me sad that he has now probably grown taller than him and I feel like getting rid of Elgar as that is a constant reminder of the pain.

Elgar the Elk is a BIG moose soft toy that DH and bought in Oslo. When A has been down he will drag all the cuddly toys I have around the house together and this moose was bigger than him, but at Christmas (when I last saw them) he was nearly as tall as him...

mum2only1
04-15-2015, 05:44 AM
Unfortunately he is blinded. In order to keep the peace with his wife he does what she says and doesn't plan anything without her approval.
I remember my mom had the kids and they were playing a game quietly on the floor. My sister n law calls and wanted to speak to my nephew who was 5 at the time. As soon as she asked him how he was doing he started crying and screaming for her to come and get him. She immediately says to my brother,"The kids aren't happy, go get them." Awful!!!! My mom tried to explain that things were fine, but she wouldn't have it. I really have never liked her much because of how she treated my mother and turned my brother against us. We didn't have a house on the lake, nice cars, a lake cottage, a boat etc etc. My brother became a money hungry (bleeping bleep).
I gave the kids things from Australia and she put them into a rummage sale or took them to the thrift shop. I will never send them anything from here ever again.
She was all about having huge rummage sales every summer and would always talk about the thousands of dollars she'd made. I still don't know why my brother married her. They were from two different sides of the track. He's forever working to keep up with her spending.
I've had to back away. I can't deal with it anymore.

purple
04-15-2015, 06:58 AM
Yep, its all on them.

I'm going to give it a week and see if they get in contact, but I'm not expecting anything.

judy02
04-19-2015, 02:15 PM
Just to say I'm so sorry again Purple :(

That is so hurtful, and it does sound like you are being fobbed off.

Your brother needs to be more firm or stand up to her to some degree sometimes...he isn't really succeeding in "keeping the peace" whilst his side of the family feel and remain hurt and unhappy. And it is wrong that he misses out on time with his family because she is basically spoilt and selfish.

I really hope God can convict him and he realises he needs to make time for his own family sometimes. Accusing you of being "overly-emotional" is nothing more than blame shifting on his part, because he refuses to deal with it. I think I might keep communication with him brief but to the point, saying you feel you've done all you can now, and you are there when he wishes to get in contact again.

But again, I'm so sorry :( It is cruel and extremely selfish for him to treat you all this way. She may be his wife, but he needs to remember also that he's known you all for a lot longer than he's known her, and you have all been there for him, long before she came on the scene. He can't just neglect his family like that.

purple
04-20-2015, 03:27 PM
My brother took A over to see my parents on Saturday while he and his wife went and did the grocery shop... My mum said all was good and A told his parents 'just go, I happy here with gran and gramps'
I'm going to ask him to text me when they next go over and if I'm free I can come up.
That's his final chance. After that I'm not trying again.

judy02
04-20-2015, 03:46 PM
:hug:

purple
04-25-2015, 07:35 AM
I had a perfect reason to text my brother in the week as they found out A had got into the pre school they wanted him to go to.
So I text him to say I was pleased to hear the news and next time they go over to my parents could they text me to let me know.
He did text me back to say they were pleased and were trying to work out what days A as going to go to pre school. NO mention of letting me know when they go to see my parents. Not impressed.

mum2only1
04-26-2015, 08:36 AM
I had a perfect reason to text my brother in the week as they found out A had got into the pre school they wanted him to go to.
So I text him to say I was pleased to hear the news and next time they go over to my parents could they text me to let me know.
He did text me back to say they were pleased and were trying to work out what days A as going to go to pre school. NO mention of letting me know when they go to see my parents. Not impressed.

Email again. Say,"I'm sure A will enjoy going to preschool. When do you think you will be at mum and dad's again? I've missed seeing all of you and I miss my nephew a lot.. Let me know, please."

purple
04-26-2015, 09:44 AM
If I ask that I'll just get the stock answer of 'we don't know' so it's not worth the text.

DIANAC
04-26-2015, 08:36 PM
Hi!
Did you ever ask your brother plainly if he objects for you to see your nephew?

purple
04-27-2015, 05:02 AM
I haven't but my mum has and she just gets told she is being emotional or reading too much into the situation.

mum2only1
04-27-2015, 05:46 AM
I haven't but my mum has and she just gets told she is being emotional or reading too much into the situation.

Well then he needs to make time for his family to see A. It sounds like she wears the pants!

DIANAC
04-27-2015, 08:11 AM
Dear purple, what would happen if you ask your brother (only him!!!) for tea and share with him EVERYTHING you shared with us?
Don't allow many months of poor guesses build a wall between a brother and a sister.

purple
04-27-2015, 10:23 AM
That wouldn't happen. If I asked him to come over on his own I would be quizzed know why and I think it would cause more problems... I think ambushing him would be hard and I would make myself sick with worry.
I've text him today to make sure he can check on mum while I'm away as dad is away the same weekend. In the same text I asked if we could work in a time to catch up while DH is home. If we can catch up hopefully I can work it into conversation and just let him know its hard to not see them.

DIANAC
04-27-2015, 11:59 AM
Yes, do set up an honest conversation in whichever way it works for you. IMO, again, it should be between you and him. No other people should be involved. This way you can start repairing a bridge between your brother and you. If he quizzes you, you can say plainly that we do need to talk. Don't be afraid of "difficult" questions. Because the answers just might surprise you. Or, you might even know the answers but it will make your brother more comfortable that he can talk to you about things that he brushes off under "We don't know what we are doing".

purple
04-27-2015, 02:27 PM
I will try to, but again in his reply he didn't respond to the bit about meeting up...

purple
04-29-2015, 05:00 PM
Well I decided to text my brother again today.
DH and I don't have loads of time while he is home this coming break. We go away on the Friday after he comes home then in the week after our new vicar arrives and we are preparing for his installation and first service along with the usual weekly stuff.

So I text him the following

Hi 'brother' wondering if DH and I can come out Monday or Wednesday next week so we can see you before we go away. We can bring tea, what would you like? Purple

I sent that 1pm knowing he doesn't teach on a Wednesday afternoon as the college has no 'classes'

It's now nearly 10pm and I've had NO reply. Not even a 'I'll get back to you'

I'm not surprised, just disappointed.

I'm going to wait until the weekend and if he hasn't got back to me I'm going in with the 'have I done something wrong'

snooch
04-29-2015, 06:51 PM
I really hope he responds soon :hug:

mum2only1
04-29-2015, 07:10 PM
My brother would be like this. I don't even bother him anymore.
I'd want to know if he thinks you've done something wrong as well.
Perhaps it's not him, but his wife.
The least she could do is be respectful. This is her husband's sister for pete's sake.

purple
04-30-2015, 04:09 AM
He's not responded. I'm not surprised at all.

I'm not sure my anxiety can hold out until the weekend so I'm sending the following.

'I'm just going to ask - have I done something wrong? I've tried a number of times to see you in the last month but I just get knocked back or ignored. If you don't want to see me can you tell me why.'

Edit - I went straight to my mobile to do it and in the time since I last checked he has messaged me!

We are going out on Wednesday!

Thank you Lord!

snooch
04-30-2015, 11:25 AM
I'm so glad you heard from him! Is it just going to be the two of you on Wednesday? I hope you can have a good heart-to-heart talk with him. :hug:

purple
04-30-2015, 11:59 AM
No, it's the 5 of us as DH is home.
I'll say I've missed them and glad we are spending time together now and we should try and make sure we do more things together now I'm getting back on my feet.
Mum has said I need to be honest with them about what is 'wrong' with me as she doesn't think they understand... it's why even if I can get away without out I will take my crutch with me (though I'm planning on a session with Justin the day before so I probably WILL need it)

Right now I'm just glad I am getting to see them and if it's going to have to be me pushing from this side I guess I need to continue to adjust my expectations... Even after mums talk to him the other week when they rang last night to see if they could come out on Saturday they responded with 'we don't know what we are doing'
So I think we need to learn to accept where they are adjust ourselves to them... it's just difficult when I'm a planner and everyone I speak to about it doesn't understand it. I spoke to a friend who came around for lunch today and her reaction was 'well you know what you are doing now, you are seeing me' LOL
But that obv doesn't work in their lives.

It's going to be interesting when I say I've got something booked in for the day of his birthday party!

purple
04-30-2015, 12:31 PM
i totally do not believe it... just had an email reminding of my follow up with the consultant about my back... when is it??? wednesday 5.30!

snooch
04-30-2015, 01:01 PM
i totally do not believe it... just had an email reminding of my follow up with the consultant about my back... when is it??? wednesday 5.30!

Oh no :( Is there any way to move the appt??

purple
04-30-2015, 06:14 PM
Oh no :( Is there any way to move the appt??

Thats what I've done...

Initially I messaged him to say what had happened and could we see what the weather was like on Monday and do something then as it's a Bank Holiday over here and my brother won't be working... but he didn't reply and while I was at college I felt I was being told to move my appointment...

My consultant said 2-3 months after surgery unless there was a problem... I'm at 2 months at the moment so a couple weeks won't matter even if it does mean I have to travel to the other hospital to do it... Means my mum and I can go to Plymouth for the day which is never a bad thing...

So when I got home I text him to say 'I've been thinking about it this evening, I'll rearrange my appointment, see you Wednesday' then emailed my consultants secretary and just said I have a family commitment come up which I'm needed to be at and can I reschedule my appointment for some time after I come back from holiday.

It feels like the right thing to do.

purple
05-07-2015, 07:18 PM
Sorry I didn't update this yesterday!

We went out for tea, it was good.

To begin with it felt a bit awkward but it didn't take long to settle down.

My SIL made some interesting comments about her mum. Her mum seems to be demanding a lot of her time.
She even made a comment that one day her mum rang them about an outing her sister was organising, getting her out of bed when she was having a lie in because she thought her sister would still be in bed.
So it was OK to get my SIL out of bed, but not other daughter! Madness!

It made me understand a bit more of why we might be falling behind in their priorities. My SIL also made a comment about feeling guilty about not seeing her mum on the weekend because she's now on her own!

But it was good to see them and DH and I have said we think our best bet is to give them a couple dates when DH is home and see what we can work out each time!

snooch
05-07-2015, 07:52 PM
I'm really glad to hear it went well! You're finding some good understanding and middle ground :)