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RoseRed135

A line in the sand: Part 2 - looking "in the mirror"

44 posts in this topic

On 6/18/2017 at 8:21 PM, Parenting3 said:

I think these estranged GPs are being given very poor advice, at least if the goal is to heal the broken relationship. Being unwilling to "look in the mirror" will almost certainly inhibit moving forward.

Its frustrating to hear that this attitude is being encouraged and thus, perpetuated.

On 6/16/2017 at 10:02 AM, oscarsmaman said:

The ACs have got to prioritize their marriage and their children over their parents.

Sort of says it all. ^^  But curiosity gets the better of me. Not asking any one person, more a general question. Why isn't realizing/accepting that our AC have lives/can't accept every invite or invite us to every event enough? People, who do see their kids and GC, complain about moving on from their own expectations - seems to just be life. Like when my husband says "I'd like 10 million dollars and a perfect golf swing" - he can't have that either, just life.

What's wrong with moving on? For PILs who do occasionally see AC/GC - but not to PILs expectations?
 

 

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17 hours ago, LilMommy said:

Thank you, Komo.

Actually, he brought at least 35 before I stopped counting.  They were, let's just say, "professionals".  

At first, I blamed myself and he happily obliged.  Eventually, I realized he was making all those arrangements while hiding in the bathroom or pretending to have work-related chores, while I hosted his parents and friends without his participation.  It occurred to me I was standing on my head for a guy who treated me, our children and even his own FOO, like crap.  When I asked him why he doesn't pay his "professionals" to host his FOO, he went into a tirade about what trash the "professionals" were.  That's when I saw how much he objectified women.  

So, even going along with taking all the blame myself, led me to open my eyes and see that it wasn't all me.  Eventually, I saw that it was a whole lot less about anything I did and more about him and how he feels about himself.

That's why I fully support self-examination whether one is the whole problem, part of a problem, enabling a problem or not contributing at all.  No matter what part someone holds in any problem, they can always choose to change their behavior, participation and/or reaction to it.

I have no doubt there are estranged GPs out there with terribly disrespectful ACs (I was married to one of them.)   

My PILs certainly had their issues, but I don't think they'd have been as big an issue in our lives if my husband was present in our marriage.

While my S2BX was more than willing to jump on the blame-the-parents bandwagon, I feel that can only go so far.  Just because he can blame them for something they taught him or neglected to teach him doesn't mean the responsibility isn't on him to do better.  

 

I do too- And generally it seems, to me, it is something most people do quite often by default- I think most people "see" what they are doing to greater or lesser degrees- "Seeing" doesn't take too much work- Deciding what to do about what is seen, and then doing something about it, or not, is where the real effort comes in, I think- It can take a tremendous amount of effort to make changes but even more to remain the same -- especially if remaining who one is causes unnecessary harm to themselves and others- Your husband didn't want to change- It would have been easier if he had, less work, but he chose not to- Now he's tormented even more than before- And as for yourself, I think you will find liberating yourself from the marriage less work than remaining while enduring each day in a depressed state- 

I think we all keep "things" about ourselves that others wish we didn't- But I cannot imagine a world in which people weren't presented with the challenge of ALL it involves simply to get along- I wish you the very best of luck going forward!

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19 hours ago, JanelleK said:

What's wrong with moving on? For PILs who do occasionally see AC/GC - but not to PILs expectations?

Yes! If you see them, you see them- Period- Sometimes it might matter very much why, how often, or how less -- or when- I'm sure there are occasions when discussing it would create greater communication and understanding- Most of the time though I think it's just a matter of how they (AC) wish to raise their family and live their lives-

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Anything to avoid true reflection, shun the mirror MiL because perfection is scarce and difficult for mere mortals to comprehend. 

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But it is also possible for the older generation to need a line in the sand and for the younger generation to look into that mirror.  Harder!, but still possible.

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Posted (edited)

People are the way they are- I mean, if not yourself who else can you be? Draw a line, reflect, who truly doesn't do both? Just because people don't change in the ways in which one wishes doesn't mean they don't think about it, ever- Thinking they don't ever reflect .. well .. forget the line in the sand .. thinking a person never reflects is like having ones head in the sand-

Edited by Komorebi

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I think both schools of thought are viable.

Here is my reasoning.  In most situations, I believe, both sides need to examine themselves to see if and how much they attributed to the situation, and determine if some of the blame lies on them.  To do this, you have to have a really open mind and really examine yourself from the other party's point of view, and realize something you might have seen as a minor inconvenience in their eyes might have been a major breaking point.  I can say in my own situation both sides did things, myself included, that attributed to the situation.  What I realized that even though I would try to change and compromise to meet MIL expectations, it was not enough... it was all or nothing with her - it had to be her way... there was no compromise. 

If you do a self reflection, and truly believe that your actions were totally acceptable and in the right, that you do not need to compromise or change, and if the other party has come to the same conclusion... then its time to move on. If you do not want to change or apologize for your own actions which obviously offended another party, then you are at a moot point and its time to move forward with your life. It doesn't mean one party is right and the other is wrong, it just means you agree that you disagree and choose to removed yourself from the situation.

To me, if you are unwilling to compromise, to concede some, and to move with the "give" and "take" then you are at an impasse. Whether the other party is willing to compromise or not, means nothing if you go into the situation, with the attitude of "I am right" and "You are wrong".... both parties have to be willing to compromise and work together.

For my own situation, it will always be my MIL way... she cannot compromise or do halfway. It is one of the reasons we have no contact with her. DH and I totally believe that if we were to extend the Olive Branch, she would expect carte blanche access to Grandson... just like she expected before... therefore, we are at an impasse and we both need to move on. 

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On 2017-06-23 at 10:15 PM, Komorebi said:

People are the way they are- I mean, if not yourself who else can you be? Draw a line, reflect, who truly doesn't do both? Just because people don't change in the ways in which one wishes doesn't mean they don't think about it, ever- Thinking they don't ever reflect .. well .. forget the line in the sand .. thinking a person never reflects is like having ones head in the sand-

It's actually an aspect of certain personality disorders, the complete lack of ability to be self aware, in reality, to admit to fault, but rather the overwhelming NEED to blame anything/anyone else for any issues.

Yes, there truly ARE ppl that are absolutely incapable of self reflection. It's a hallmark of serious issues.

As, I suspect, is, "Well, I *know* I'm a judgemental, critical, must-have-it-my-way person, but they're FAAAAMILLLY, so they HAVE to put up with it. This is WHO I AM, and they CAN'T demand me to change. IF they love me, they'll accept me as I am!" and then wails that their AC has gone NC, and they 'just don't know what I did wronnnng!" It's not that they don't REALIZE what they're doing, it's that they don't think others have the right to refuse to accept it.

A person can't kick someone in the shins every time they see them, demand that the person paste on a smile and accept it, "That's just how I am! A shin kicker!" and then get to be upset when someone decides that, nope, I'm not tolerating this, either quit kicking me or I'm outta here.

Emotional abuse, toxic behaviour, is *worse* than shin kicking, imo.

Problem is, for some folks? Asking them to quit kicking someone? "You're trying to CONTROL ME! YOU CAN'T TELL ME WHAT TO DO! I've ALWAYS been allowed to kick people! It's TRADITION in my family! My mother kicked, her mother kicked, her mother's mother kicked..."

It's somewhat facinating to watch someone pretzel themselves into making their unacceptable behaviour everyone else's fault.

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11 hours ago, ImpishMom said:

It's actually an aspect of certain personality disorders, the complete lack of ability to be self aware, in reality, to admit to fault, but rather the overwhelming NEED to blame anything/anyone else for any issues.

Yes, there truly ARE ppl that are absolutely incapable of self reflection. It's a hallmark of serious issues.

As, I suspect, is, "Well, I *know* I'm a judgemental, critical, must-have-it-my-way person, but they're FAAAAMILLLY, so they HAVE to put up with it. This is WHO I AM, and they CAN'T demand me to change. IF they love me, they'll accept me as I am!" and then wails that their AC has gone NC, and they 'just don't know what I did wronnnng!" It's not that they don't REALIZE what they're doing, it's that they don't think others have the right to refuse to accept it.

A person can't kick someone in the shins every time they see them, demand that the person paste on a smile and accept it, "That's just how I am! A shin kicker!" and then get to be upset when someone decides that, nope, I'm not tolerating this, either quit kicking me or I'm outta here.

Emotional abuse, toxic behaviour, is *worse* than shin kicking, imo.

Problem is, for some folks? Asking them to quit kicking someone? "You're trying to CONTROL ME! YOU CAN'T TELL ME WHAT TO DO! I've ALWAYS been allowed to kick people! It's TRADITION in my family! My mother kicked, her mother kicked, her mother's mother kicked..."

It's somewhat facinating to watch someone pretzel themselves into making their unacceptable behaviour everyone else's fault.

I wonder why the EGP doesn't just get a life, independent of AC? 

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1 hour ago, PattyGram said:

I wonder why the EGP doesn't just get a life, independent of AC? 

It's a power/control thing for some folks.

See, they put their *life* into their children, and the children OWE them for that. And now that it's time to collect, the AC are breaking the pact (that they usually weren't aware of entering into, simply by being born/adopted). That their AC dared to tell them no cannot and will not be tolerated or accepted.

They had PLANS. Not getting what they want isn't in the PLAN.

Nothing in their life is right, now. Everything they 'knew' is now in question, all b/c of the dang AC not following the PLAN. And usually, it's b/c of the CIL, b/c everything was going according to the PLAN before their AC got married.

If they could be so wrong about the PLAN, what else could they be wrong about?! Major anxiety, panic, and an insatiable need to force the AC back onto the PLAN ensues. Oftentimes, it seems, the older generation followed their parent/PILs PLAN, b/c that's what families DO, and now it's their turn to be in charge, and instead, they're being told nope, they don't get to be Matriarch/Patriarch, so now they're confronted with the fact that they didn't get to run their OWN family, and now they're not getting the promotion that they'd always been promised either! They feel ripped off, devalued, angry, resentful, afraid, betrayed. They put in their time! This was supposed to be their turn!

(Please note, I'm referring to those that, even if not diagnosed, appear to exhibit serious signs of personality disorders, not the general population)

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Posted (edited)

23 hours ago, ImpishMom said:

It's actually an aspect of certain personality disorders, the complete lack of ability to be self aware, in reality, to admit to fault, but rather the overwhelming NEED to blame anything/anyone else for any issues.

Yes, there truly ARE ppl that are absolutely incapable of self reflection. It's a hallmark of serious issues.

As, I suspect, is, "Well, I *know* I'm a judgemental, critical, must-have-it-my-way person, but they're FAAAAMILLLY, so they HAVE to put up with it. This is WHO I AM, and they CAN'T demand me to change. IF they love me, they'll accept me as I am!" and then wails that their AC has gone NC, and they 'just don't know what I did wronnnng!" It's not that they don't REALIZE what they're doing, it's that they don't think others have the right to refuse to accept it.

A person can't kick someone in the shins every time they see them, demand that the person paste on a smile and accept it, "That's just how I am! A shin kicker!" and then get to be upset when someone decides that, nope, I'm not tolerating this, either quit kicking me or I'm outta here.

Emotional abuse, toxic behaviour, is *worse* than shin kicking, imo.

Problem is, for some folks? Asking them to quit kicking someone? "You're trying to CONTROL ME! YOU CAN'T TELL ME WHAT TO DO! I've ALWAYS been allowed to kick people! It's TRADITION in my family! My mother kicked, her mother kicked, her mother's mother kicked..."

It's somewhat facinating to watch someone pretzel themselves into making their unacceptable behaviour everyone else's fault.

True, there's a small percentage of people whose brains don't function properly for different reasons- Most folks, however, do have the ability to reflect- And I suspect most of the individuals up for discussion here don't suffer from what you describe- Just my take-

I do think an individual like the one you described in your second paragraph has the ability to reflect and does think that people have the right to refuse to be their company- Saying they don't is just part of their attempt to get their way-

I think most stories here are similar in that way -- because most people want what they want- And some will go to great lengths to get it- Doesn't matter if what someone wants is something good or not- Wanting is wanting-

Edited by Komorebi

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28 minutes ago, Komorebi said:

True, there's a small percentage of people whose brains don't function properly for different reasons- Most folks, however, do have the ability to reflect- And I suspect most of the individuals up for discussion here don't suffer from what you describe- Just my take-

I do think an individual like the one you described in your second paragraph has the ability to reflect and does think that people have the right to refuse to be their company- Saying they don't is just part of their attempt to get their way-

I think most stories here are similar in that way -- because most people want what they want- And some will go to great lengths to get it- Doesn't matter if what someone wants is something good or not- Wanting is wanting-

The problem I have with that is, when someone KNOWS they're behaving in a negative/toxic manner, and demand others accept it, that's not normal or healthy. It's abusive. They may not have a personality disorder, but they're abusers all the same.

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Posted (edited)

1 hour ago, ImpishMom said:

The problem I have with that is, when someone KNOWS they're behaving in a negative/toxic manner, and demand others accept it, that's not normal or healthy. It's abusive. They may not have a personality disorder, but they're abusers all the same.

It seems like a flaw, to me -- if not a disorder- But a flaw that the individual is aware of- A person can be aware of their behavior but not fully aware of its impact -- which makes deep reflection regarding what they've done next to impossible- They may experience remorse as a result of reflection, but they cannot experience another's pain- Best they can do, in that regard, is make comparisons, I think-

When someone knows they want their way, but don't get it, so decide to forfeit a relationship as a result? I think forfeiting is a much healthier decision than continuing to create strife trying to get their way, trying to be right- In this respect, some grandparents do opt to not be part of their adult children's plans for them -- them meaning the grandparents-

Edited by Komorebi

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I agree, Komo, that its more of flaw than a "disorder"....I think there is too much emphasis these days on people saying "I can't help it, it's just the way I am" to excuse these negative behaviors....And often when its the GP they become "right fighters" for what ever reason (because they are THE parents or whatever) and just can't let anything go. So we can go back to Dr. Phil and his opinion on right fighters...."Do you want to be right, or do you want to be happy?" 

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I think it goes both ways, Mame- It seems to me people want to live their lives and then expect others to live it their way too -- AC/GP, no matter-  Sometimes people point the finger at others when they themselves are doing the same, have done the same .. lol .. Some people would rather not be happy, and some simply arent happy unless they are doing things their way- And sometimes people choose between feeling better about being who they are than who others expect them to be- Crazy world .. :)  I really dont think there is a one size fits all solution ..

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Posted (edited)

9 hours ago, Mame925 said:

I agree, Komo, that its more of flaw than a "disorder"....I think there is too much emphasis these days on people saying "I can't help it, it's just the way I am" to excuse these negative behaviors....And often when its the GP they become "right fighters" for what ever reason (because they are THE parents or whatever) and just can't let anything go. So we can go back to Dr. Phil and his opinion on right fighters...."Do you want to be right, or do you want to be happy?" 

MBIL has a habit of opening his mouth before he thinks. FIL once told DH and I "he can't help it that's just the way he is, cut him some slack" NOPE. My response was, "He can keep his mouth shut when he is dealing with his then STBX (now ex-wife) and he can control his tongue when he is dealing with his Pastor, so don't tell us he is that way and can't control it. He most certainly can control it when he chooses too." Never heard another word like that from FIL again.

Most people will do (or continue to do) what they can get away with.

Edited by Cupcake55

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11 hours ago, Komorebi said:

I think it goes both ways, Mame- It seems to me people want to live their lives and then expect others to live it their way too -- AC/GP, no matter-  Sometimes people point the finger at others when they themselves are doing the same, have done the same .. lol .. Some people would rather not be happy, and some simply arent happy unless they are doing things their way- And sometimes people choose between feeling better about being who they are than who others expect them to be- Crazy world .. :)  I really dont think there is a one size fits all solution ..

I think the bolded is key.

If folks could accept and respect that they have the right to live as they choose, but so does everyone else, things would be a lot easier.

That's what boundaries are for and about, imo. "This is *my* dance space, this is *your* dance space..."

I think part of the problem can be that some folks take boundaries as an insult, a punishment, even about control.

 

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3 hours ago, ImpishMom said:

I think the bolded is key.

If folks could accept and respect that they have the right to live as they choose, but so does everyone else, things would be a lot easier.

That's what boundaries are for and about, imo. "This is *my* dance space, this is *your* dance space..."

I think part of the problem can be that some folks take boundaries as an insult, a punishment, even about control.

 

Yes, I agree-

People have told me how to live my life, or what to do -- or suggested- No big deal, the least I can do is offer them the courtesy to listen to their take and consider what they have to say- Other times I'm not so nice about it LMAO And by not nice I mean I firmly tell them that what they are suggesting won't work for me, I would prefer to do it my way, not theirs- Sometimes I ask others to do things different, too- I have repeatedly asked my son to please leave a particular door open, not closed- I have asked my husband not to listen to the TV cranked so high that I could follow the program he is listening to all the way outside- I could go to battle with these two .. but I would prefer to be happy, instead of fight against the tide- Usually .. :)

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7 hours ago, ImpishMom said:

I think the bolded is key.

If folks could accept and respect that they have the right to live as they choose, but so does everyone else, things would be a lot easier.

That's what boundaries are for and about, imo. "This is *my* dance space, this is *your* dance space..."

I think part of the problem can be that some folks take boundaries as an insult, a punishment, even about control.

Exactly. Nobody should ever attempt to tell another adult how to live. (non-abusive)

Anonymous poster hash: ea945...f93

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