I am currently estranged from one of my siblings. It pains me to admit it but
it is a reality from which I will not move a finger to reconcile. After +50
years of being bullied, manipulated, lied to, taken advantage of, etc. I guess I
saw the light and saw my sibling as an individual rather than someone whose
connection to me (blood) was so strong I actually (and often) gave in to unreasonable
demands just so we could be in relationship.
I realize now that my sibling was always jealous of me and that perhaps my
loyalty lied with my parents and also I did not want to be the child that
disappointed them or made them think their parenting styles were somewhat faulty.
While I cannot really recall being compared negatively with my sibling, I do
recall my mom telling me that my sibling was somehow lacking in emotional maturity,
social skills, etc. and that because I was thought to have an abundance of these,
I should feel sorry for my sibling and include my sibling in my life and activities
all the time.
We grew up, married, yet remained connected. Sometimes long periods of silence
between us ensued as a result of life getting complicate for us both but I always
managed to connect and make sure I had plenty of information to provide my parents
from whom my sibling was estranged for years at a time.
This is the first time that I feel no urge to reconnect; the last insult was almost
a year ago and rather than feeling lonely, I feel light and airy that I have lost
the constant stress and anxiety that walking on eggshells put me under. I will admit
that losing a sibling who shared many memories of our early childhood is rather sad
but the benefits for me are what I focus on each day. These days I can honestly say
that my thoughts do not center on my sibling every day like they used to. I think of
my sibling perhaps a couple of times a week, without any guilt or desire for connection.
Life is short, only lived once and as I age I realize that no one really needs to be
a martyr and that my immediate family is relieved by my decision, one they thought I
should have taken long ago.