Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Confessions #4 and #5

Confession #4: My Nieces and Nephews Make Me Never Want to Have a Child

We were visiting the in-laws over Easter weekend when the first thoughts really struck me. I really, really do not want that life - the screaming, the kids hyped up on sugar and thoughts of an imaginary creature delivering them presents in the morning, the snotty noses getting rubbed against your pants, the rereading of Mud Pie for Mother for the eightieth time, the six o'clock wake-ups, the look on their faces right after you tell them not to touch something for the four hundredth time and they do it anyway. 

I lost my patience on Saturday afternoon around four o'clock, three hours after the family with four kids arrived unannounced after their Easter brunch at the fucking country club, waking up the other 3 kids who had just been laid down for naps, so we were dealing with seven kids, none of whom had naps and all of whom were jacked up on chocolate and the presence of other children. I started putting whiskey in my coffee and never stopped until the kids were in bed.

I lost my patience on Sunday morning when the squealing over Easter baskets took place two stories away and I could hear it. I lost my patience on Sunday morning when the twenty-four month old who does not say any words except baby, mama, and yeah was suddenly put in my charge and he went around attempting to destroy everything in his sight. I lost my patience on Sunday morning when my oldest niece did not play nice with the Easter egg hunt and kept finding everyone else's eggs (they were color coded by child) and instead of leaving them, kept stacking them up in a pile.  By two on Sunday afternoon, I was huddled in our room upstairs, reading my Kindle, and pretending not to notice the screaming of children or the questioning of my poor husband as to where I was.

By the time we left on Sunday afternoon, I was pretty sure I am not maternally motivated. No matter how many times people say it would be different if they were my children, I'm pretty sure that it would not be. I can not deal with these children. 

Confession #5: I Am Resentful of My Sister

My sister is getting married in August. I really am happy for her, but I'm incredibly frustrated by the whole hoopla surrounding her wedding. 

My parents gave us $X for our wedding and my mother is spending $X x 4 for my sister's wedding.  My sister, who has lived with my mother (and father when he was alive) for her entire life.  My sister who has never paid a dime of rent or a dime towards the utilities to run the household.  My sister who is still currently on my mother's car insurance plan.  My sister, who, by my account, should have approximately a gazillion dollars in the bank.

And if that isn't enough, my mother is taking my sister and my sister's fiance on a trip to Ireland next month.  BB and I did not get a all-inclusive international trip when we got married.  

When my mother was here last week, I tried to subtly point out that I don't care about the inequality between what I was given and what she's been given (I even sort of mean that - our wedding was beautiful - but I sort of don't - it has come to be equated with how much more my parents prefer my sister to me), but I'm concerned about the sense of entitlement that my sister has.  My mom said my sister is fine and her fiance will continue to take care of her from her on out in the same way.

Anyway, it's nothing to me. Except for that little voice in the back of my head that tells me that this is just further proof of my mom's favoritism.  I think it's absolutely fine for parents to have favorites, but I am having difficulty believing that the favoritism should be so explicitly acted upon.  And, just to be fair, my sister claims that I am the favorite daughter, so I guess it could just be a manifestation of the grass always being greener on the other side of the fence.

6 comments:

  1. A) Ugh. Kids. *shudder* I love them and think they're brilliant and wonderful and adorable...from 100 yards away (minimum).

    B) I'm assuming your sister is younger. I will tell you that, as the youngest, I received a lot of material things from my mother - a new-to-me car, clothes, trips, etc - that my much older siblings didn't get and there is definitely some bitterness there...they think I was spoiled in many ways. But the one thing they got that I never got was time. My mom didn't have time for me ever. And I would trade in the car, the clothes, the trips, the material privileges I had growing up if I could have just had the time. Time is love. A new pair of boots doesn't help anyone feel less neglected or unloved. Trust me.

    I have no idea if this applies to your situation. But, while I can understand your hurt feelings over the fact that your sister is receiving these amazing material things surrounding her wedding, is it possible that you've overlooked an intangible gift you received that your sister didn't? For instance, you mention that your father passed away...maybe your mother is trying to subconsciously make up for the fact that your father was there for you at your wedding and absent from your sister's? Perhaps your mother is in a better financial position to help than she was for you? I don't know. Possibly no one knows. Regardless, I'm sorry you feel sad and feel like you aren't as valued as your sister. Because I think you are RAD!

    C) How sad it is that your mom thinks that your sister will be fine going from her care to her future husband's without knowing how to care for herself.

    I really hope I haven't overstepped my bounds with this comment :/.

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  2. I heard once that kids go out in the world and do their own thing, but when in the context of the family, the same issues that they've had forever are still present. You got yourself out of a situation that was causing you pain -- I think you would not trade that success for the confines of that homelife. Your mom and sister will eventually (or not) confront their own pathologies. Props to you for getting clear of it; you are (so far as I can tell) getting the better end of the deal. And I am totally with you on the parenting thing -- I don't know how people do it!

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  3. as a parent, I will say that it is hard, but it is different when it is your own, because you see all of the good stuff, too. But it sounds like those kids were all being a bit obnoxious! LOL BTW- my kid doesn't get candy for Easter. I'm anti-candy! LOL

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  4. J. and I aren't going to have kids, and every time we hang out at a large family gathering where at least one child is crying or screaming at any given moment, we're really glad of our decision (of course, serious thought went into our decision, etc., etc., but I think you know what I mean).

    I feel like my younger brother is my mom's favorite, but with her, I think she's "rewarding" him for spending so much more time with her (before he got engaged, he used to come home nearly every weekend to visit; me, not so much). So I think the extras that she gives him are subtle reminders to me. Not that I care. :) J. once had a grandpa tell him that he gives extra money to the other grandkids because they seem to "need it," but he didn't give any to J. because "you two do well for yourselves."

    Maybe your sister living with your parents makes your mom feel like she needs to take care of her more?

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