Bridget - posted on 03/08/2011 ( 5 moms have responded )
This isnt a post for stay at home moms exactly, but it is a question about choices while being a Mom. Im hoping someone can offer some advice. Ill apologize in advance if this is long.
I have some family drama and Im just not sure how to handle it. As a wife and Mom I have been able to put up with a lot from my family and my in laws. Family is so important to me that Ive chosen to overlook A LOT of behavior I find unacceptable. For examply, to honor my Step Dad and my husbands Step Mom, we chose to ask them to be our daughters god parents. My step dad cried and said it was the biggest honor of his life, and he has made that clear every day since. My husbans Step Mom said "I dont have to stand up at a baptism do I?" and then ended up offended because she said that we were basically demoting her from grandparent to god parent. I was furious, but I have chosen to overlook that for the sake of a positive future.
Now on to the current issue at hand. I have 2 sisters, one who is an amazing sister and aunt who is 8 years younger, and another who is 4 years younger and lives close to me. For many years now her personality has been changing. She has been neglecting the family and has done some things to me personally that have been incredibly hurtful. My parents have chosen to overlook this behavior for the most part, and have even treated her better than my youngest sister and I. The middle sister has claimed to be in school full time for 6 years, at community college, and I just knew she was lying. Its not hard to see through that lie. But she has used school as an excuse to get out of family gatherings, trips etc. I got married out of town a few years ago, and she was my maid of honor, she did NOTHING for me through the whole process and 3 days before the wedding called everyone in my family to say that she had money "stolen" and couldnt come to my wedding unless someone paid for her to come. The stories could go on and on like this, but I think the point is clear. There are also suspicions of drug use, I suspect she is abusing perscription pills. By her own admission she takes Xanax, an anti depressant and Adderall (which I KNOW she has no medical reason to take). She is so skinny she looks like a skeleton, and is covered in scabs which she picks at relentlessly. She also shakes like a leaf.
When I had my daughter I decided to let the past be the past and let her prove herself to be a good aunt and sister again. For a while she came around us often, she still blew off the family, but she was around us so I ignored the ridiculous stories and blatant lies. Until, in October, my In Laws got collections calls for my sister. I was humiliated, to say the least, and through some conversations with my Dad found out she was also being sued for not paying bills. She said she would take care of the collections calls, but after this incident she stopped coming around us. Between then and Jan I only saw her at Thanksgiving and a few Chrismas gatherings. Then in Jan the collection calls started again at my In Laws- After talking with the collection company, in an effort to stop them from calling my In Laws I found out she was using my address, my Moms address, and other peoples phone numbers for credit. So needless to say I was angry and concerned that she was stealing identities. Especially since I have now seen proof of at least 25k in debts she owes.
After learning this info I took some steps I possibly shouldnt have and I hacked into her school account, only to discover she has not passed a single class, let alone been in school full time, for the full 6 years she has claimed to go- and that her college fund has basically been depleted. AND she has caused my Step Dad to commit insurance fraud, unknowingly, because she has been covered under his insurance as a full time student.
I feel like she has scammed my Mom and Step Dad and cost them tens of thousands of dollars, and has hurt the family in so many ways I dont know how anyone can ever trust her again. My husband has a big problem with her, and doesnt want her around our daughter, except at family gatherings. She stands us up constantly and our daughter is starting to understand more and more. I have given my sister an ultimatium- to come clean to me about her lies and to start rebuilding trust before she can come around us outside of family get togethers. My Dad is furious with me- saying she hasnt done anything to me to warrant this and Im in the wrong for keeping her from her niece- despite the fact that in 5 months we have seen my sister about a half dozen times by her choice alone. My Mom says its a shame, but maybe its time for her to have some consequences.
So after a VERY long story, my questions are simple. Am I doing the right thing? Am I being too tough on her, or not tough enough?
I should also add that in August we are moving 4 hours away, and I know she wont ever visit us, so we will hardly see her for at least 2 years, maybe more if we dont move back. Which means she will not know her neice at all, or the baby I am having in less than 3 weeks. Am I wrong to keep her from us this way?
Thanks so much ladies!