Sunday, September 21, 2014

Family Discord - The Truth Comes Out

Okay, before I get into all this, I am writing this with the permission of my mother-in-law, Clydie.  I talked to her about it because I didn't want to share family drama without getting her take on things first, and her okay on it.  Secondly, I realize that this is just our side of the story, and there are always at least 2 sides to any story.  Third, I will not be using the real names of anyone involved in this story, other than the members of my household.  This is not to protect anyone by any means - but in case someone gets stupid and tries to sue me for slander or libel, and I just don't want that hassle. And lastly - I have all the emails and Facebook messages that prove 99% of what's coming in this blog. 

Let's rewind to 2011 - Brian and I are newlyweds, and Brian is headed out for a deployment the first weekend in October.  As a last family gathering with his side of the family, we all loaded up and went down to Lake Blackshear for Labor Day weekend.  All 3 of Brian's sisters, 1 of his brothers, his mother, one sister's boyfriend, another sister's husband, 2 grandkids, and my son were all there.  We were all gathered at my uncle's house, having a cookout by the pool, and Brian's oldest sister (I will call her Jeri) said some stuff to another sister, got mad, and wanted to walk all the way back to Carrollton with her grandson, who I believe was just 7 at the time.  We wouldn't let her go with him as it was extremely hot and would have been very dangerous to hitchhike all the way from Cordele to Carrollton, another sister offered the use of her vehicle and gas money to use to get back home, which Jeri refused, and Jeri left the house on her own.  She called the cops and they threatened all of us with interference with child custody, and Jeri decided to stay, holed up in the bedroom, the rest of the time we were there.

Jeri never apologized for her unreasonable behavior during that weekend, and Brian and I have never heard anything from her in the past 3 years.  Not a word. 

Until last Saturday - she called Brian (he didn't answer the call), wanting to know something about breeding her dog.  Not one word for 3 years, and she calls him wanting to know about breeding her dog?!?!  What the hell kind of crazy shit is that?!?!?!

Also in 2011 - Brian's mother, Clydie, was diagnosed with Stage 3 lung cancer.  She had surgery in July, and started her chemo in late August (the week before the trip to the lake on Labor Day weekend).  She was living with her youngest daughter and son-in-law.  I'll call this daughter Mary.

In early December, I started getting messages from Mary and also the middle sister, whom I'll call Linda.  There was talk in the messages of Clydie's desire to move out from Mary's house into a place in Bremen, and they wanted all the siblings to chip in and help with the bills.  I don't know why I was included on these messages, as Brian and I had not been married a year at this point and I just didn't feel it was proper for me to be included in all this. 

The little bit of information I was able to ascertain from Clydie at this point was that it was not her desire to move, but she was pretty much being told she had to move out.  The persistence of the 2 sisters with the messages to me and to Brian greatly angered Brian - he was deployed overseas, and there was nothing he could do about the situation.  There was at least one hateful, ugly message that Mary sent to Brian, and he responded back in kind, telling her that she and Linda no longer had a brother, that he wouldn't be having anything else to do with either of them.

In early January, Clydie called me and said that Mary had kicked her out, and she had nowhere to go.  She was headed to her friend's house in Alabama temporarily, and Brian and I let her know that she was welcome to move in with us.  I cleared out the spare bedroom in the trailer, rented a U-Haul and moved her in a week or 2 later. 

I am so thankful to have Clydie in our lives!  Is everything perfect?  No.  No relationship, friendship or family is perfect.  But we work through the problems, forgive the transgressions and hurts, grow stronger from it all and move on.  Clydie has tried to move on from all the hurt that Mary and Linda have caused her, but every time someone reaches out, something happens to cause Clydie to pull back again.

At some point in 2012 or 2013, Brian received an email from Mary that was an apology of sorts, and an explanation as to her behavior regarding Clydie's moving out.  Other than that email, he has never heard from Mary or Linda since the whole ordeal with Clydie began in December 2011.  Neither sister bothered to call him, or message him or even inquire about him when he returned from deployment in September 2012.  Not a word.

Oh I take that back.  Brian arrived home from his deployment around 3am on the last Saturday morning in September 2012.  Clydie and I had already made plans to go to Linda's house to pick up a few things that were in storage.  I don't recall whether Linda knew that Brian had gotten home or that something was said that morning at her house that he was home, but she seemed quite irritated that he had not come with us.  Really?  He had just gotten home from deployment, flew from Indiana to Charlotte, and drove 5 hours to get home, at 3am, with no sleep since the night before?  And you expected him to be sociable not just after that, but after knowing how you participated in the ugly situation that involved your mother being kicked out of her home, and you had never bothered trying to explain yourself or apologize for that?

One of the many sad things about this situation is that the brother who lives in Florida has yet to hear his own mother's version of events.  She has told me that any time she even tries to broach the subject, he waves her off.  He just wants everyone to forgive and forget and get along.  He has no idea of Clydie's version of events, of her reasons for feeling the way she does - he just wants bygones to be bygones so that we can all be one big happy family again.  And I say really?  You expect her to just forget all the ugly things that have been said and done, with no real apologies or discussions about it with those that caused all the hurt and pain?  I know I've only gotten her side of things, but I've seen no real efforts from her daughters to make any amends. 

Some of you may think this is none of my business to write about, but it affects me and those I love.  It angers me to know what has happened and all the hurt and anger it has caused.  Clydie is slowly moving past all of it, and Brian just gets so angry whenever something comes up with one of his sisters and the whole situation.  Just tonight, we ran into Linda's daughter at the grocery store - she was so damn rude to us, as if it was truly a bother for her to speak to us.  No one has done anything to her, so we don't know what her problem is.  We can only assume it has something to do with the discord between Brian and his sisters.

Family discord really sucks.  And it's not just happening in my in-laws' family, there's some in my family, too.  I may touch on some of my family's discord at some point, just not tonight (oh is there a lot!).  But rest easy folks, it's not in my household!

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