If I Could Choose My Family

To say my family is dysfunctional would be an understatement. I’m currently not on speaking terms with my youngest sister; my middle sister and I get along well enough, I suppose, but it always feels like a battle to prove who is better between us. My mother is very argumentative, and my dad is a stubborn old ass who thinks he’s always right, even when he’s not.

Don’t get me wrong. I love my family. I’m just sure I wouldn’t pick them, now, as family, if I had the choice. Yes, we help each other out, and yes, I’d do anything for them, but I don’t always like them.

I am the oldest of three girls. Growing up, I was always (and quite literally) the redheaded stepchild. My sisters were antagonistic, and since they knew I was always getting into trouble, they had no problem helping that process along by either tattling or blaming me for things I didn’t do. Now would probably be a good time to mention I was abused as a child. I know that I sometimes did things that warranted some type of discipline, but never to the extent of what I received.

Like I mentioned, my youngest sister and I are currently not speaking to each other. This occurred because I left my child in their care during the summer of 2013 while my husband and I came to California to find him a good job and us a place to live. While in their care, my child reported that he got beat with a belt and a lariat rope, amongst other things. I was furious, so I reported her, because that is abuse, plain and fucking simple. Needless to say, she didn’t take that very well.

She also likes to air all of her personal business on social media to get sympathy and pats on the back from her little following, and when I approached her about it, being the bullheaded person she is, she blocked me instead of changing. I know she continues this behavior, because she still has my husband as a friend on her accounts. We always know about every little drama she’s involved in, because she’s always talking about it.

My middle sister is actually a rather decent human being. She’s almost too good, if you ask me. While we were growing up, she’d always be given privileges and responsibilities that would normally be bestowed upon the eldest because she was “more mature” than I was. She was very good at crocodile tears and ass kissing, and she used that every chance she got. I, on the other hand, was and still am a blatantly honest individual, and I will tell you to your face if I think you’re full of shit without even trying to sugar coat it. This never worked well for me.

You could say we were always involved in a pissing contest. She took no shame in ratting me out, but I was always of the opinion that snitches are the lowest life form, so I never returned the favor. Perhaps I should have. I don’t know. I don’t think it would have changed much, honestly.

My mom was a hardass, quick to anger, and seemed to always be upset. She says she loved raising us, but it didn’t feel that way. There was a lot of yelling in our house. I hated that the most. My mom is a very judgmental person, and she’s very opinionated. She’ll form an opinion about someone within five minutes of meeting them and will use that against them the rest of the time she deals with them. She says I deserved every beating I got. There were times I questioned her love for me.

My dad… Where do I begin? My dad isn’t my biological father. He adopted me at the age of 2, after marrying my mother. As a teenager, he once told me he regretted adopting me and it was the worst decision he ever made. I don’t think I’ll ever forgive him for those words. My dad beat me. He had a very, very short fuse, and could blow his top from the slightest provocation. In my younger years, he used to only get angry and lash out at objects, but I remember the first time I was pinned to my bed, getting my butt blistered at nine years old. I remember almost hyperventilating, I was crying so hard. This continued through my teen years, until I told a friend who lived up the street from us, whose mother then called CPS. This was the beginning of the end for our family. But, I’m not sorry about it. I was through being pinned down into my waterbed with my dad above me raining punches and slaps and swats down on me.

I have a better relationship with most members of my family as an adult than I did as a child. I call my mother on a regular basis and she flies out here to see us as much as she can. My dad and I spent a few therapy sessions working through some deep shit between us and now I can honestly say I don’t hate him anymore and I love him. I call him regularly as well, albeit, not as regularly as I do my mother. My middle sister is busy with her new job, but we try to stay in touch. I don’t call my youngest sister because she always wants to make every conversation about her issues and how everyone is mistreating her. I don’t have the time or energy to deal with this, and I refuse to feed into her narcissistic behavior.

This was a very, very difficult post to write for me. It’s only the tip of the iceberg. Perhaps I’ll write more on my childhood later.

I posted this in response to the Daily Prompt.

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