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KimberlyF
KimberlyF, Longtime Relationship Expert
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Experience:  Relationship expert for almost three years with JustAnswer.com
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Hi there-I am so sad because I am at a loss about what to ...

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Hi there-I am so sad because I am at a loss about what to do regarding my relationship with my sister. I am 50 and she is 52. Even as children, she has never been kind or nice to me but it has gotten to the point where I cannot take it anymore. She is my only sister and I have tried everything to get along with her for many years. There have been innumerable conflicts but I usually am the one who raises the white flag and crawls back. Her daughter, now 15, is my only niece and I love her very much...it''s one reason I bite my tongue and take so much regarding my sister. I have no other living family members, so it means a lot for me to get along with my sister, but I am tired. I have tried to talk to her about are problems but it goes no where. I am tired of feeling so sad. She just hung up on me now when I called her at work because I''ve written her 6 emails since Christmas and I left her 2 phone messages, without response. I am at a loss about what to do. Please help.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  KimberlyF replied 6 years ago.

HiCustomer Thank you for asking your question on Just Answer. The other Experts and I are working on your answer. By the way, it would help us to know:

-Did you have a fight and that is why she isn't responding to you?

-Did you get most of the attention when you were children?

-How was your childhood could you explain a little about your childhood and how you didn't get along then?

-What put a strain on your relationship as children?


Thank you again for trusting us with your problem. Please reply as soon as possible so that we can finish answering your question.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Reply to KimberlyF's Post: This pattern has been longstanding, with or without additional conflicts or fighting. We have not lived in the same area of state for 30 yrs, so the ongoing conflicts take place long distance, even over the phone. We will even fight when we see each other, once or twice a year. It's horrible. This time, I believe she is angry that my husband and I chose to go away for Christmas and not spend it with her and her family...they were in yet another "crisis" re: my niece; so, we thought it was best to stay away for the holiday 'cause my sister and I don't do well when there is NO added stress to her. She said, "It was okay"--I have to ask permission???---but obviously, it wasn't. This is her latest complaint about me, I'm sure. I can never please her.

No, I didn't get most of the attention growing up. I probably was better liked by most people because I have always been happier and more easy going than my sister. We both suffer from clinical depression, which doesn't help things.

Our childhood was rough...very 2nd generation Italian American...strict parents. My sister and I would cling to each other, literally, in times of need but then she would turn on me, on a dime...I have some physical scars to prove it.

Strain on the relationship as children???? Dealing with the turmoil in our home, I guess.
Expert:  KimberlyF replied 6 years ago.

 

Customer

It sounds that instead of your sister finding comfort in you it's almost like she is taking out her childhood on you along with her depression. It also sounds like she resents the fact that you got along better with other people and she didn't have anyone. The turmoil in the family and the fact that she didn't have an out and a way to have happiness in her life then, she probably didn't know how else to deal with her anger and hurt feelings than to attack you verbally and physically. I think it would benefit the both of you to take maybe a cruise or a vacation together just the two of you or maybe even a wellness resort that helps you to deal with conflict as well as a vacation, wellness resorts help you to talk about your feelings without anger so that you can show the other emotions that you need to show and get your feelings about what you went through as children, massages, yoga, hikes, I think you would really benefit doing this together so that you can learn to cope with your past together instead of apart. Your sister may feel that she can not take it out on the family that affected her then so she decided to take it out on you thus bringing on depression also.

Maybe plan on going there the next holiday or her coming there and talk to her about how she feels about the way you were raised, maybe try justifying her feelings of anger and tell her that you feel angry also and that you feel like you both were robbed of any kind of happy childhood. Turmoil within the home is one of the major issues of your relationship because you both haven't dealt with that pain maybe counseling can help you to deal with those feelings, has your sister ever went through counseling for the family issues? I know that you both live far away from each other but you can still be each others support system, instead of the family crisis bringing you closer together it has pushed you further apart and pitted you against each other. Your sister has to realize that the way you were treated in the family is not either of your faults it seems as though she may be blaming you for something or using you are her soundboard because she can not do that to the people that put her through so much.

If you try to get her to talk to you and she still does not acknowledge you then maybe it is best to love her from afar it may be that she will never come around and she may be set in her ways. Try telling her that you love her no matter how much you fight and that you understand the heartache she went through when she was a child because you went through it also maybe this will make her see that she isn't alone and then you are trying to make a mends at least with the two of you even if you can not make a mends with the people that hurt you so much in your childhood. This may at least open the lines of communication between the two of you and tell her to call you when she is ready to talk. Give her the time that she may need to come around and finally communicate. Tell her that you don't want the same situation that hurt you both as child to carry on for generation after generation and that there has to be a time to break that cycle for your children's sake because you are all each other have beside your respective husbands. Let me know if you have anything to add

KimberlyF, Longtime Relationship Expert
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 750
Experience: Relationship expert for almost three years with JustAnswer.com
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KimberlyF
KimberlyF
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Relationship expert for almost three years with JustAnswer.com