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will they ever talk to me again?


ab234

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Last thursday, my parents and I all had one outrageous blowout.  They were laying into me about my life goals, money, etc. ad nauseum like usual -- and I had had too much, decided f&ck the filter.  I let it all hang out in a rather ugly fashion.  my dad got so enraged that my mother was screaming at him to watch his heart as he charged across the kitchen screaming at me.  He tried to push the "make daughter cower in silent obedient terror button" as he screamed at me, but was met by me a la Medusa.  I threw it all out there.  Every last ugly bit of what I am dealing with, how it is affecting me, how I am clinging to threads of sanity, and how their crap is just unraveling what few threads I have left.

The catharsis was amazing -- I felt so much calm when I woke up on Friday morning.  My brain was much quieter than it has been in a long time.

I'm in the middle of a VA disability claim that has been dragging on for ages and ages -- and they ask me idiotic questions like "so if the VA increases your disability, are you finally going to be able to return to school/work?"  I attribute craziness such as this to their overwhelm-ment and inability to grasp what has happened to the mind and body of their baby daughter at the hands of Uncle Sam.  Yes, mom, you got it!  When the moment arrives that the VA acknowledges the fact that I am more disabled than I was 6 years ago -- I will miraculously become un-disabled!  Right, uhuh!

Anyway.  four days has passed without a peep from them.

who knows when the next time my parents are willing to talk to me will be.  Being sick and tired of them blocking out the truth that what is wrong with me is not going to miraculously undo itself any time soon, I sat down over the course of a few hours and composed an email to them, editing over and over, watching some TV to chill the hell out, then editing some more.

I spelled out all of my injuries, traumas, and Dx's, how they change my day to day life, with links to expert medical sources for them to educate themselves a bit.  I pointed out that I am not a doctor or a shrink, and have absolutely no idea when or if my docs will ever come up with any new answer that will allow me to "get my body back" or "get my brain back", so please quit asking me when that answer is going to come -- I am the least qualified person to answer that question.  I informed them that their inability to accept the fact that -- many dreams I had 15 years ago prior to my injuries and traumas are simply unrealistic and I have to create new dreams that match the body/brain I have to live in -- is really interfering with my ability to forge and chase those new dreams.

I also included my up-to-date "parents to me" loan ledger, and reminded them that why my backpay from the VA arrives -- they are priority #1.  I think I probably added in a few things they didn't even track, like the $40 they "lost" in salvage title fees when instead of sending dad's Chevy to the wrecking yard (serviceable but unneeded) -- I sold the Chevy to pay for my Delta's repairs so they wouldn't have to loan me [the Chevy's selling price].  I even calculated in gas money for all of the trips they made (60mi R.T.) during my "move from hell" (out on DVD next x-mas!).  I even added in $50 for groceries for all of the dozen or so times I have munched at their house in the last few months.  It was all very detailed, probably so detailed that it just pissed them off even more.  Yeah, OK, my loan ledger is beginning to look a bit like Rodrigo Mendoza's apology in The Mission.  Yes, I have begun calculating in absolutely any imaginable expense I have caused them just to make sure that they have nothing to hold over my head.  I would rather them have an extra $10 or 65 cents or whatever than allow them to keep one more apron string (bullwhip) to wield over me.

no, I am really not sure when they are going to talk to me again.  at this moment, I don't really feel anything at all toward them, so it isn't particularly upsetting.

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I agree with wifezilla. Catharsis is so good. While the blowouts I've had with family haven't been about MI, I've been down the "silent treatment" road. So be it. It's their problem, not yours. Let them come to grips with it in their own time. Best wishes, and keep calm!

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If you have been holding this all in for such a long time, it needed to come out. I am glad.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

wifezilla and rabbit37 -- thank you both for the props.  I need all of the supportive echos I can get right now.  This has been incredibly tough on me, no idea what it has done to my parents.

I've been telling them what's wrong with me for 14 years.  I think it is just so overwhelming to them that they block it out shortly after we go through it all.  12 years ago, my dad spent 2.5 weeks in the hospital after a failed angioplasty because a tech kept fiddling with his O2 meter, saying it was faulty when actually he was in congestive heart failure.  I remember the whole thing detail by detail.  My dad nearly died several times that first week and I wanted to push a malpractice suit because his heart endured significant damage that could have been prevented if someone had just pulled out a stethoscope.  BOTH of my parents have no detailed memory whatsoever of those 2.5 weeks -- they have repressed the entire thing.  I think that is what they do with my problems -- they hear them, then because they are so overwhelmed that such terrible things could happen to their baby daughter at the hands of the Army (I was never in any war zone) -- they block it all out. The time came last Thursday to throw it all out there, no matter how ugly it got.  When my dad came physically charging at me across the kitchen -- that was it, the floodgates were open and there was no turning back.  It all poured out of me, after which I had to go sit in the living room for 30 minutes because I had to drive home -- 20 miles -- couldn't take my klonopin.  I was shaking like a leaf, my stomach was throbbing, and my mother kept calling me to come back to the family room every five minutes.

The only "disability" they are used to is not what I consider horribly debilitating.  Sure, my dad has had heart problems for 24 years, but he changed his diet, takes his pills, and he's fine for several years between episodes.  Just ONE YEAR after his triple bypass (9 years ago) -- he started SNOWBOARDING.  As long as he eats right and takes his meds -- his heart problems are not debilitating at all.  He goes in every few years, get a couple new stents, loafs around the house for a week, takes it easy for a few months while the stents embed themselves, then is right back to everything like normal, snowboarding, working on cars, you name it.  The only reason he really has to pace himself for his heart's sake is because he's a clinical workaholic.  They have no reference to compare to what I am going through -- but they THINK they do because problems that could kill you in a moment like heart disease are obviously so much more day-to-day debilitating than nerve damage, arthritis or PTSD!  riiiiiiight.  Yes, for some folks, heart disease is VERY debilitatinng, but I can't believe my 68y.o. dad is horribly debilitated by his Sunkist lemon heart when I see him at the snowboard park.  He has only been debilitated while recovering from surgeries -- never permanently.  There's a universe of difference between "disabled" and debilitated.

Yes, I made sure the email was coherent and as matter-of-fact as possible, with links for self-education.  They haven't responded at all to it, even now nearly 24 hours later -- they are rather wired for their age so I know they have read it -- everyone in my immediate family has broadband.  I BCC'd my middle-sis the whole thing because she and I had discussed these problems last month.  She is a medical officer in the Air Force, so I am kinda hoping she can run a little interference for me if they ask her what the hell is up.  They know the two of us talk...

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Yeah, they most probably will. Denial is a hard thing to come to terms with. Your parents are probably hanging on stubbornly to their denial. When they get it, they'll be back. It might take some time, but it sounds like a little distance is good for everyone right now. They've had this image in their heads a long time about you. You completely shattered their image. It'll take em some time to deal with that.

Having said that, Good for you for standing up for yourself like that! Feels great to get it all out there, huh. I've been there. I still have to remind myself to talk. Alot of times. The habit of holding it all in doesn't do me, or my family any good. Talk, talk, talk.

Good luck, keep posting

Croix

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  • 2 weeks later...

!!!UPDATE TIME!!!

OK, so since the argument from hell and the email to follow, I decided to give my parents up for Lent.  I'm not Catholic any more, but I still do like the yearly Spring cleaning.  I discussed this with my sister in the Air Force and she agreed with me that I should not talk to my parents at all until (a) after I have mailed them a check for the money I owe them (after my VA backpay arrives), and (b) we have all had sufficient time to chill the hell out.  She agreed with me that it will greatly reduce my stress levels and prevent any further loss of sanity for me to refuse contact with them for the time being.

In keeping family Lenten tradition -- I will answer their phone calls on Saturdays, but I let them jabber, answer any questions as succintly as humanly possible, don't volunteer any information, and don't initiate any subjects -- whatsoever.  I have been good so far.  Tonight my mother called after 9pm when she knew it was free on my cellphone, but I let it go to my voicemail anyway.  I haven't even checked my voicemail yet.

yeah yeah, I know that I am lucky to have parents.  I just hope that once I am back on my feet financially and independent of them again, that sometime in the future, there might be some chance that the "parents" will go away and my "mom and dad" will return.  I haven't seen my "mom and dad" in a long time, so even if I only get little glimpses every now and again -- it would be far better than the way they are relating to me currently.  I used to have a "mom and dad" most of the time.  When I got into arguments with friends, mom would bake me cool cookies.  When I scraped my knees, dad would paint them with merthiolate - then paint merthiolate smilies on my hands.  Regardless of how many times the wooden spoons cut the air -- when I really needed them to be "mom and dad", that's exactly what they were.  I haven't been able to count on that since my dad had his first heart attack 23 years ago.  I've seen glimpses over the years, lots and lots of glimpses, but most of the time they are stone cold "parents" -- no matter how badly I need my mom and dad.  My dad is a war orphan.  My mom's mom died when my mom was 25.  I think they have very serious can't-grok issues with the notion that a 33 year old "child" might need her mom and dad once in a while.  They act like I somehow asked for this life, and have said as much that I should have planned better.  What highschool athlete plans to spend their adulthood in a messed up body with a messed up brain?

Yeah, my stress levels have definitely been a lot lower without them these past nearly three weeks.  The only time I get stressed out about them is when I think about possibly interacting with them or our previous arguments.  As much as I have been able to rein myself in since we aren't speaking -- I am beginning to wonder if I need to maybe rethink the silent treatment a little more long term than just Lent...

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(I agree.  Cats are excellent therapy.)

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

My p-doc has actually asked me if I need to move up to a "2 cat dose", but I told him that they might get to involved with each other and not give me enough attention, 1 cat seems to be doing the trick OK for now.  He laughed :-)

Words can't explain how happy I am to have a p-doc who understands the VERY real therapeutic value of companion animals!  Now I just need to get a companion animal statement so that I don't have to declaw her for my next apartment -- yet another p-doc appt...

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