I'm a terrible sister

tgf
tgf Member Posts: 950 Member
edited March 2014 in Breast Cancer #1
I need to unload something and this is the only place I can be totally honest and admit to something. I may ramble ... and I apologize ... and maybe no one even needs to read this ... but I just need to get it "out." Next Saturday is my father's 90th birthday. He lives here in town with his wife (my mother died when she was 46 ... but I've know my "step-mother" all of my life). Anyway ... I have 2 younger sisters. I'm 65, one sister is 62 and the other is 55. Both live out of town. The 55 year old and I have never been close ... maybe because of the 10 year age difference.

I live alone ... and like my own space. Since my lumpectomy in January ... it's helped me a great deal to be alone and in the position of not having to worry about anyone or anything else except taking care of Teena. Well ... I had told my youngest sister the other day that I was going to take my father and step-mother out to dinner to celebrate our father's birthday ... and my sister just called and asked if she could come to visit over the weekend and go out to dinner with us. I could hardly talk ... but eventually I told her I was very sorry ... but I just couldn't have her stay with me. I tried to explain how stressful it is for me ... and that I'd have to clean the house etc. etc. etc. and she just kept saying she didn't mind because she'd help me clean the house ... she'd sleep on the floor etc. etc. By then my stomach was in knots and the anxiety level was just about through the roof... but I knew I could NOT have her stay with me. I felt like I was the worst person on earth. How could I say and do that to my sister? But ... I kept telling myself that emotionally and psychologically I really couldn't handle "company." And ... on top of things ... I'm changing my anti-depressants this week ... so who knows what my state of mind will be by next weekend.

She mentioned staying in a motel and then just coming over to my house to visit ... and I told her that would be too stressful for me. I just don't handle "company" well.

I tried my best to explain to my sister how I have to "stay calm" ... and be "in control" ... and cleaning house and having company is just more than I can handle now... but ... I don't know if she understood. She said she did ... but I could tell she was crying.

On top of all of that ... my step-mother does not like either of my sisters and it is quite obvious. But ... for some reason ... I am "her favorite." In fact since my diagnosis she has called me almost every day to check on me. She's been a great comfort to me these past few months ... and I know my step-mother is really looking forward to going to dinner next Saturday. If my sister was there ... it would be a disaster.

I feel terrible about what I told my sister ... but I had to be selfish. I really hope she does understand. But I feel like such a jerk.

Well ... it's helped a bit to get this off my chest ... but I still feel really guilty.

thanks for listening to me.

hugs.
teena

Comments

  • lolad
    lolad Member Posts: 670
    Teena
    We all know ourselves and know what we can or cant handle. I think you should just take your father and stepmother to the dinner. Especially since your sister and step mother dont get along. You could tell your sister that you and her can go to dinner another time, but just want it to be with your father and stepmom first. Tell your sister you can meet somewhere that it would be easier on you. I definately dont think its a good idea for her to join the three of you. I think you would feel to anxious and wouldnt enjoy yourself and you need to enjoy yourself. Tell your sister you just point blank do not want anyone coming to your house. Its your space and you dont feel comfortable having it violated right now. Tell her you love her and want to meet her somewhere else another day. Hope it works, if she loves and knows you, she will understand.

    laura
  • lolad
    lolad Member Posts: 670
    lolad said:

    Teena
    We all know ourselves and know what we can or cant handle. I think you should just take your father and stepmother to the dinner. Especially since your sister and step mother dont get along. You could tell your sister that you and her can go to dinner another time, but just want it to be with your father and stepmom first. Tell your sister you can meet somewhere that it would be easier on you. I definately dont think its a good idea for her to join the three of you. I think you would feel to anxious and wouldnt enjoy yourself and you need to enjoy yourself. Tell your sister you just point blank do not want anyone coming to your house. Its your space and you dont feel comfortable having it violated right now. Tell her you love her and want to meet her somewhere else another day. Hope it works, if she loves and knows you, she will understand.

    laura

    By the way
    You are not a terrible sister. You are who you are and if you were a terrible sister you wouldnt be carrying the guilt you are carrying now. Talk to her, tell her you love her and want to make it a day for just the two of you away from your house.
  • ppurdin
    ppurdin Member Posts: 1,181
    That is a tuff one.
    sometimes i wish I could be more open in what I want and need.When I start Chemo in a few weeks i will try to do better.I usually just go along with what others want rather then speek my mind.the last surgery I had i had company every day.They just wanted to talk.And i really didn,t feel like it.now i feel like i was cheated because i didn,t take that time and rest.good for you for standing up for your self.Sounds like if you didn,t the evening would have been a wreck.Maybe sending her a card and telling her you will call her when you are ready for company.and let her know you love her.Good luck and god Bless. (Pat)
  • VickiSam
    VickiSam Member Posts: 9,079 Member
    Teena .. You are NOT a terrible sister or person
    Now that I said that .. Getting together for a meal, lunch or dinner without Dad or Step Mom is a wonderful idea. You will be in a controlled environment, not in your home. When you have had enough of the visit, you can leave. Or if you find your are enjoying her company .. you want to invite her over for coffee or tea.. Just a thought.

    Your sister (s) and step mother have alot of garbage to sort out.. don't let this interfer with your treatment or recovery.

    Saying no is sometimes the hardest thing to do. Guilt is something that we all deal with on a daily basis ..

    Forgive the situation and yourself. You are perfect in my eyes, Teena.

    Take care,

    VickiSam
  • This comment has been removed by the Moderator
  • KathiM
    KathiM Member Posts: 8,028 Member
    Do what feels good....
    If it feels better to be alone, do it! But don't second guess yourself. My fav expression "It is what it is". Was your sister there during your treatment? Does she check in other than this time for your dad? Do you want her to be a part of your life? Would you regret it if something happened, and she was gone? These are questions that needs honest answers to yourself.

    Self-interest is different than selfish. My mom, after my second dx, said "You know, Kathi, I don't need to be number one on your list". I gently said "Why, mom, rest assured you are not...I am number one on my list, as should YOU be on YOURS!"

    Hugs for a very hard decision,
    Kathi
  • tgf
    tgf Member Posts: 950 Member
    KathiM said:

    Do what feels good....
    If it feels better to be alone, do it! But don't second guess yourself. My fav expression "It is what it is". Was your sister there during your treatment? Does she check in other than this time for your dad? Do you want her to be a part of your life? Would you regret it if something happened, and she was gone? These are questions that needs honest answers to yourself.

    Self-interest is different than selfish. My mom, after my second dx, said "You know, Kathi, I don't need to be number one on your list". I gently said "Why, mom, rest assured you are not...I am number one on my list, as should YOU be on YOURS!"

    Hugs for a very hard decision,
    Kathi

    Thank you all
    After a very sleepless night I think I'm feeling more comfortable with my decision to tell my sister I wasn't ready company ... but I'm still uncomfortable with the way I handled the conversation. As suggested ... I'm going to write her do a better job of explaining why I can't handle the stress right now ... and I will also let her know that when I do feel up to it ... I'll let her know and we can meet for lunch or something.

    Thank you for your reassurance that I did the right thing by taking care of myself. And ... Kathi ... your favorite expression "It is what it is" is also my favorite expression. In fact I wear a bracelet with that engraved on it. I gave it to myself when I finished radiation ... and I wear it 24/7 as a constant reminder that there are just some things I canNOT control and I must accept that.

    hugs to you all ...
    teena
  • dyaneb123
    dyaneb123 Member Posts: 950
    tgf said:

    Thank you all
    After a very sleepless night I think I'm feeling more comfortable with my decision to tell my sister I wasn't ready company ... but I'm still uncomfortable with the way I handled the conversation. As suggested ... I'm going to write her do a better job of explaining why I can't handle the stress right now ... and I will also let her know that when I do feel up to it ... I'll let her know and we can meet for lunch or something.

    Thank you for your reassurance that I did the right thing by taking care of myself. And ... Kathi ... your favorite expression "It is what it is" is also my favorite expression. In fact I wear a bracelet with that engraved on it. I gave it to myself when I finished radiation ... and I wear it 24/7 as a constant reminder that there are just some things I canNOT control and I must accept that.

    hugs to you all ...
    teena

    Listen Teena,
    It sounds like

    Listen Teena,
    It sounds like your sister just wanted to spend some time with you and you Dad . So make that happen at another time. And I know what you mean about people wanting to visit and having to clean the house for them. You just want to tell them to do you a favor and dont come!!!!I live alone too, so the house is cleaned when I feel like it, if I feel like it. Sometimes I just dont have the energy and the last thing I need is to feel obligated to entertain somebody.So ditch the guilt. Tell sis you want to see her and spend time catching up and maybe kidnap Dad for a quick lunch.
  • lolad
    lolad Member Posts: 670
    unknown said:

    This comment has been removed by the Moderator

    What the hell is this?
    What the hell is this? Please quit posting it ive seen it a couple of times. Tell us whats on your mind in a language we can all understand. if its a joke, its not appreciated


    laura
  • Wolfi
    Wolfi Member Posts: 425
    lolad said:

    What the hell is this?
    What the hell is this? Please quit posting it ive seen it a couple of times. Tell us whats on your mind in a language we can all understand. if its a joke, its not appreciated


    laura

    Virus post?
    I agree with you, Laura.

    Don't click on part of that post - I think it may be a virus link.
  • Moopy23
    Moopy23 Member Posts: 1,751 Member
    tgf said:

    Thank you all
    After a very sleepless night I think I'm feeling more comfortable with my decision to tell my sister I wasn't ready company ... but I'm still uncomfortable with the way I handled the conversation. As suggested ... I'm going to write her do a better job of explaining why I can't handle the stress right now ... and I will also let her know that when I do feel up to it ... I'll let her know and we can meet for lunch or something.

    Thank you for your reassurance that I did the right thing by taking care of myself. And ... Kathi ... your favorite expression "It is what it is" is also my favorite expression. In fact I wear a bracelet with that engraved on it. I gave it to myself when I finished radiation ... and I wear it 24/7 as a constant reminder that there are just some things I canNOT control and I must accept that.

    hugs to you all ...
    teena

    Taking Care of Yourself First
    Teena, I can't add anything to what others have written; I'm just glad that you feel better about your decision. Survivorship means making the tough decisions you must make to preserve and promote your health--mentally and emotionally as well as physically. Now, enjoy that visit with your dad and stepmother!
  • dbs1673
    dbs1673 Member Posts: 203
    ENVY
    Good for you Teena! You are doing what I wish I could do for 15 months now. Everytime someone in my family calls on me to be the "someone" I sucker into it an become that "someone". This last time I did it was to host my mother's 75th birthday party which was 4 days beofre having another surgery to replace my implants. My husband and my children (ages 18 and 20) were not happy with me. Realizing how insensitive every one was and more importantly how uncomfortable my husband and children were I will not set myself up again. It's not only about what we put ourselves through it's what we put our loved ones who "get it" through. This is not being selfish it's about being healthy...in body,mind and spirit. If your sister wants to help clean, take a rain check for when it benefits YOU not her.

    learning the hard way,
    dawn
  • survivorbc09
    survivorbc09 Member Posts: 4,374 Member
    dbs1673 said:

    ENVY
    Good for you Teena! You are doing what I wish I could do for 15 months now. Everytime someone in my family calls on me to be the "someone" I sucker into it an become that "someone". This last time I did it was to host my mother's 75th birthday party which was 4 days beofre having another surgery to replace my implants. My husband and my children (ages 18 and 20) were not happy with me. Realizing how insensitive every one was and more importantly how uncomfortable my husband and children were I will not set myself up again. It's not only about what we put ourselves through it's what we put our loved ones who "get it" through. This is not being selfish it's about being healthy...in body,mind and spirit. If your sister wants to help clean, take a rain check for when it benefits YOU not her.

    learning the hard way,
    dawn

    Teena, you aren't terrible
    Teena, you aren't terrible at all. You have to do what feels right to you and what is right for you, and, if you don't want someone at your home, then you have that right. You shouldn't feel bad. Your sister should understand.

    Hugs!