Okay...here is a question? Why are people so petty? Let me rephrase. Why are grown adults so petty? I have a family member whom I would like to kick their ass and I know that I could verbally lay them flat, but to what end? This individual would not care and would ultimately be vindictive to not just me but my kids too. The whole reason I am fuming today is because this person chose my sons birthday to verbally go after me in the presence of my sons new girl friend. It was embarrassing and hurtful to my son and very embarrassing for his girl friend. But what this person didn't realize is that my son knew what was being said was not factual and this person also made an ass of himself on meeting my sons girl friend for the first time. First impressions are hard to change. The icing on the cake was that it was said and done without provocation, with I believe the desire to hurt and it was not said in my presence. He knows better I am sure.
Some hard truths! When I was young....I was not all that nice! I was pretty self absorbed. I have spent a lot of years making amends for the behaviors of my youth. I did and still do have many short comings, but.....I would like to think that after a few years of maturity, I am not the same person I was 30 years ago. Honestly....who is? There is however a person in my life who has never let go of the past. He has reminded me of my short comings every chance he has gotten for years and to some degree rewritten history time and again. Shock of shocks.....I always come out looking pretty bad in every rewriting. What is worse is that he has alienated my kids. From a early age, with every possible chance, he has bad mouthed me to them and told them how awful I am as both a person and a parent. I have tried every avenue to fix what seems to be broken between us from apologizing for anything I ever did to hurt, upset or piss him off, to basically doing community service to him. Nothing has worked and periodically he will open fire with things like...."Every bad thing that has ever happened to you, you deserve." Is it true? Maybe, but must you announce it in a roomful of people and in front of my kids?
I had hoped that when he had a child he would realize that parenting isn't cut and dried and that there were a lot more gray areas than he had ever acknowledged or understood. After all he and his wife were literally overwhelmed at times taking care of one. I was taking care of 2 and early on 3 all by myself and apparently I was still a crappy parent. Someone said to me once after his son was born, "Awesome, now he has a kid and you can talk to his kid about him like he talked to yours about you." The bad thing about that is...like with my kids, his kid would be the one hurt the most and I wouldn't do that to a child. I know how much it bothered and hurt my kids hearing hurtful things about their mother from another relative they were suppose to love and respect....and I simply could never do that to his child.....or any child for that matter!!!!!
Okay....I have to admit that it does hurt, but not in the way you might think. It hurts because he deliberately tried to hurt Z on his birthday and embarrass both him and his girl friend. It hurts because he doesn't realize the wedge that he has put between himself and Z. It hurts because he seems to be so unhappy that he can't allow anyone else to be happy. And it hurts because the relationship between him and I is all but non-existent now and I believe in the coming years will be completely dissolved.
Do I think I am a bad parent? No. Am I perfect and do I make mistakes even after all these years? Of course! It is part of being human. It is not his opinion of me that hurts or upsets me. I know by now that there is nothing I could ever do that will change the feelings he has about me. He has held onto past angers for years. It isn't just me. He is a man with very few past friends because of his anger. Many only tolerate him and few truly like him...which makes me sad because underneath his anger he is a really funny and likable guy, but the older he gets....the less those traits are recognizable. I think what hurts the most is that he has used my kids over the years to strike out at me. He has hurt my kids and hurt his relationship with them. Worst of all, I don't think he feels an ounce of remorse over any of it. Sigh!
Okay...so I am not particularly proud of passive aggressive me. I am much better at dealing with situations head on and resolving issues. Unfortunately....it takes two to fix a problem and in this case....I am working alone. I know as you all read this, that there is someone similar in every family and/or relationship. They are a mystery as to the why's and wherefores of their anger and their resulting behavior. People get hurt, divides happen and in the end....relationships are lost. It's sad for everyone involved!
So ends my January passive aggressive whinefest. Hopefully this will not be a monthly event but at any rate....thanks for letting me vent!!!!