It seems the vail has been lifted on our close family relationships and everyone is seeing the people closest to them in a new light. Quite frankly a more accurate one.
“For the first time, I am seeing that my mother is a total narcissist and incapable of having a real give and take relationship with me”
“I am now realizing my sister who constantly dumps all her problems on me then asks for money then tries to make me feel bad when I say “no”. She never asked how I am doing or the kids. It really upsets me”
Most people’s response is the cut those people out of their lives. While I admit in some cases that is the only option in most cases it’s not really the best.
The best way is to set proper boundaries and here is how you do it:
–Make friends with Voicemail: If phone calls drain you letting it go to voice mail then sending them an email saying, “can’t talk right now but you are welcome to send me an email” Or cut off the conversation after 5 minutes.
–Have people put it in writing: If there is any kind of legal family conflict (seeing LOTS of that right now) say “I feel like this would be better spelled out in writing so send me an email” People will be reluctant to say the mean things in writing that they would over the phone.
–Get comfortable with “No”: This takes practice so work on your speech now but “no” is one of the most important words you will ever use.
-Be Firm: The key is not to make it a discussion. when they ask “why”. Pretend you are speaking with a child and say, “I decided… is what is best right now” and leave it at that. You don’t have to explain yourself.
–DON’T ARGUE: Trust me people LOVE drama, it gives them a chance to feel ok “saying what they really think” DO NOT GET SUCKED INTO A FIGHT. -that water is cold and it’s not worth it. Just say “no” in as few words as possible and move on. If they hurl an accusation at you don’t take the bait, instead say “that’s not very nice, I am sorry but I have to go” and leave the discussion.
I know this is hard, believe me I deal with it too, but these are some of the most important skills you can learn. If you need help call me, hypnotherapy can make these responses come more automatically.
As a side note a while ago I told my husband his grandmother had just died. He said “who?” then “Oh, I only met her once. She and my mom had a falling out so she cut her off. Probably something about money.”
Whatever, lesson grandma was trying to teach by cutting off it was not learned and she missed getting to know 2 amazing people. Don’t let that be your kids. Set a boundary instead.
Love yourself and your family enough to do the hard work of change. Namaste.