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Family jealousies!?!?


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I'm sitting here trying not to cry as I type this. My sister and I are constantly fighting and the insults that we hurl at each other have become dangerous to our long term relationship. She's 29 to my 32, college educated, has a new car than me and for the first time in our lives, she's skinnier than me (I'm 12 lbs. above my pre-med weight). We both live at home with our parents. At this point is our lives we couldn't be more different in our lifestyles, but it seems like our feelings are close to being the same.

I'm on disability for bipolar I with psychotic features and had to leave my former happy, hypomanic, super-productive life in FL due to my illness. I had to give up a $60-70,000 a year job, my $1200 thousand square foot apartment and the benefits of the sun and the ocean to move back home.

She has never been on her own and is a big, fat baby (ok, a skinny baby). Anyhow, she keeps throwing my disability and sedate lifestyle in my face and it's only causing my mixed state to worsen. Just as I thought I was past the worst, now I'm having strong urges to start cutting again. I don't know how else to cope with this extreme stress, unnecessary pressure and meanness. My entire family is going on vacation to FL in 10 days and I sense trouble brewing. I'm certainly not innocent; I can give as good as I get, but my coping skills are much worse. (I'm also in a standoff with my SIL, who is also coming on this trip). I don't want to cancel! I need a vacation and I never pass an opportunity to go back to my favorite place (FL).

What do I do?

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Call the doc and if you really want to go on the vacation, bring emergency meds and try to do things on your own if possible.

P.S. That sounds more like resentment than jealousy to me... using your MI as ammo.

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Thanks for the suggestion, wj74. I think it's sound advice that I should probably follow.

And JT, your observation is probably true, but the ironic thing is she's an R.N. I guess that doesn't account for much.

Oh, and just as an aside, I want to be clear that I haven't cut going on 3 years and I've been hospital free for 2 years. That's the severity of the situation. *sigh*

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I had a similar experience a few months ago. My brother, who I always looked up to, got married a couple years ago and his wife for some reason thinks I'm lazy. She never SAID that, but it was insinuated more than once.

So a few months ago, I asked my brother if he would want to hang out sometime because it seemed like we were growing apart. He wrote back and said it's my fault we were growing apart, hurled some stuff in my face about things I did that hurt the family in a manic episode (mind you I was 15 and it was 10 years ago), said he didn't believe my other brother ever "did" anything to me (he did and he admitted it and apologized), told me I take my parents' money and that I don't want my kids (my parents help a lot, they want to, I apologize to them profusely for that). I mean, he went on and on and on.

I cried over this for days. I didn't cut but I sure felt like it. He has since apologized although I don't think he gets the amount of damage this has caused me. It's unnerving when people are saying things about you, but whatever you say to them never matters. It's ingorance of MI. I sure hope they never have to suffer it and feel the pain that we do.

I don't know what to say about the FL trip. That's a hard decision. I wish I could help you out, but I thought atleast I should let you know you're not alone.

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I had a friend who was jealous that I had a disease, whereas she was just completely miserable in personality. Mine could be improved by meds, she was stuck with hers. When I got on SSDI, it was the final straw for her. She thought she was as sick as me, and I got paid for not working, and she hated her job. Our friendship ended shortly and very ugly afterward.

I suggest you do everything in your power to not engage in her tirades, and don't fight back. You are just losing the never-ending battle.

Also, I've found that people in the medical field tend to have less compassion for friends/family, because they have to develop such thick skin and distance from patients at work.

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I really struggle with my family, always telling me i am sick, but expecting me to act "normal" and take normal responsibility. Having so sympathy for what i go through and call me lazy for not working. They don't seem to realise i feel like dying every day, the pain i feel, the inability to escape from that. ANd not realizing how serious what i am going through is, that i could die any moment from this pain, and i am fighting the best i can, This is my life!. and yet they are the ones who keep telling me i am sick, its like no matter what i say, no body listens because i am the one who is menatlly ill there fore what ever i think or say doesn't mean anything. And when i tell them how i feel I am told i am wrong apparently because i am depressed and i thinking patterns are wrong. Its a hell of a place i am in. No where to go, I feel closer to the chair ( my best friend) than i do with my own spices. What i have to say is just important, the way i feel is just as important as anyone!

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I would do what you can to put an end to the fighting. Probably say something to the effect of, "I'm sorry for the insults, and this needs to stop. I'm concerned about my long-term relationship with you and our ability to get along while living under one roof." If you're throwing insults at her, then you're not completely innocent in all of this, like you said. Doesn't matter who started it, either. If she continues to hurl insults at you, then just shut it down. You both are adults. Time to start acting like it for the sake of your sanity.

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I really struggle with my family, always telling me i am sick, but expecting me to act "normal" and take normal responsibility. Having so sympathy for what i go through and call me lazy for not working. They don't seem to realise i feel like dying every day, the pain i feel, the inability to escape from that. ANd not realizing how serious what i am going through is, that i could die any moment from this pain, and i am fighting the best i can, This is my life!. and yet they are the ones who keep telling me i am sick, its like no matter what i say, no body listens because i am the one who is menatlly ill there fore what ever i think or say doesn't mean anything. And when i tell them how i feel I am told i am wrong apparently because i am depressed and i thinking patterns are wrong. Its a hell of a place i am in. No where to go, I feel closer to the chair ( my best friend) than i do with my own spices. What i have to say is just important, the way i feel is just as important as anyone!

I know exactly what you mean. My mom has said word for work what you just said about thinking patterns, then she'll yell that I'm delusional (sometimes I am), but it still hurts to have it screamed at me. And most times I am not delusional.

I can identify with what everyone is saying. I guess it's definitely a problem for a lot of people with a MI.

Today, we're having a family reunion and I'm just going to avoid the people that I feel stressed around and if I have to take to my room, then so be it. There is so much stree in this house that even my dog is stressed out. My sister is always verbally abusive to him and now he constantly looks sad and is always trying to dig through the carpets. It breaks my heart that this getting to him, too.

Thanks everyone.

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I know you're on disability, but is there any way you could move out, even to a small, not great place? Or find a group share with a roommate or two? Your parents won't be there forever, assuming the natural order of things.

Could you find a place in Florida? Maybe you can look for a place when/if you go on your trip.

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I've been contemplating my next move, because you're so right, Cat. My parents won't always be here and so my future care is definitely another stresser in my life. I'm not sure what's available, but it's high time I found out.

As far as FL, it kills me that I can't reside where I feel my happiest and where I am thankfully 1000 miles from my family. It was a great motivator get out there and do the best I could, because I knew what the alternative was and I'm scared of being homeless. FLs mental health care is deplorable and so for that matter alone, a move is just not in the cards right now. Although when I am really manic, I have to fight the strongest urge not to just get in my car with nothing and take off for L.A. Ive never even been to CA, but something always tells me that I'd be happy there. (read: out if control happy manic) among the celebrities. Lol

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I don't know what your current care is like, but are you stable mood-wise, and would your pdoc be willing to prescibe a longer period of meds so you could move to Florida and have time to get mental health care in place? The toxic situation you describe can't be good for your health.

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Well, the party is going on and I'm refusing to leave my room. I am so stressed that all it's going to take is one snide comment or nasty word to my dog and I'm going to have a complete emotional collapse. I'm so close to the end of my rope that I don't trust myself to be around these unknown family members. It will truly be a miracle if I can avoid a collapse and not being carted off to the E.R. My mind is so overwhelmed with stress and yet my dad keeps telling me to get over it and come downstairs. I took a Xanax, but it's doing very little to tamp down my rising panic at the thought of losing it front of these people and having to be forcibly extracted from my house by 911 crisis people.

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There's always my old standby get-out-of-jail-free card, the stomach virus. Everyone will be glad you stayed in your room, and no one will want details. For extra authenticity, go in the bathroom and flush the toilet often.

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