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Sister's exclusion of me

(47 Posts)
jennymolly Sat 11-Nov-17 14:15:58

Sorry new to all this and think I inadvertent ly highjacked another thread. Sorry.
Basically the problem is that my one year younger than me siblings (twins) arrange meeting , holidays and celebrations without contacting me or only at the last minute so that it's difficult to go. Sister lives 200 miles away and brother is in Canada. I had thought we would have a joint 70th birthday celebration this year (I discussed this with my sister back in Jan) but since then she didnt contact me. Whilst trying to make contact to see what was happening I found out via fb that out brother had already arrived in the UK and then the 4 of them were enjoying a lovely holiday in Croatia. On their return neither contacted me and then sisters daughter invited us to a party with barely 2 week's notice which due to the lateness, arrangements for animals and the distance (husband and I are both in remission from cancer) we just couldn't make it. However I sent presents and cards for the party. Sister rang to thank me and I (nicely) asked why I had been left out of the planning of our brothers visit. She said they didn't tell me about the holiday as it cost much more than we could afford and she didnt want me to be jealous! I said it wasn't abt the holiday but just not telling me anything about our brothers visit. She said they he was 'only' my brother whereas she was his twin which was more important. I said that was a bit unkind to which I she said she was getting annoyed with me and hung up. That was in June and despite phone messages left by me and emails she has made no contact. I hold no grudge and accept her but I am deeply hurt. She is a very volatile person and has been since childhood. My brother (who returned to Canada without seeing or contacting me) is in reasonably frequent contact (if impersonal) via FB and clearly doesn't want to say anything to our sister. I hate bad feeling but I'm quite heartbroken. Her second husband is a sweet man but seems also unwilling to talk to her about this. Do I just let go?

Starlady Sat 11-Nov-17 14:44:54

I've often heard that twins are unusually close, but sister sounds unreasonable about it. (((Hugs)))

I think they didn't tell you about the holiday because they wanted it just for them - twins and their spouses - or, at least, sister did and brother didn't want to make waves. Even if your birthdays are close together, she may see their shared birthday as something special for them only. I'm so very sorry.

Are there any other reasons she may be distancing you? Old sibling rivalry issues, perhaps? Any recent arguments? "Night & day" personalities?

janeainsworth Sat 11-Nov-17 14:47:53

I think you have little choice, Jenny. I can understand you feeling hurt, but maybe they are upset that you didn't go to their party? 2 weeks isn't really short notice.
You seem to be blaming your sister, but your brother must have agreed to the arrangements too.
I would let things lie, send them a Christmas card and a gift if you usually do that, and hope things blow over.

Madgran77 Sat 11-Nov-17 14:54:32

Presumably your brother could have contacted you off his own bat and chose not to! So sadly, I'd say both are making a choice about their relationship with is not just your sister. Twins or not, they do have independent thinking processes. I'm sorry they are making choices that are hurtful to you flowers

Leticia Sat 11-Nov-17 15:21:57

I think it is incredibly mean and hurtful, but sadly I think that you will just have to accept that that is the way it is.

BlueBelle Sat 11-Nov-17 15:48:03

Ahh this is horrible and I feel for you how very mean even as twins and wanting time together they should have included you in part especially as he was coming from Canada I suppose they thought they were including you by inviting you to the party but why did they leave you out of knowing he was coming over that is the hurtful part
I suppose there is nothing you can do but it’s strange he didn’t even think to visit you even for a day especially as both you and your husband have been ill
Not much more I can add, very sad for you ...families eh !

M0nica Sat 11-Nov-17 17:12:14

I suspect that for some reason your sister is holding a grudge against you, of which you are unaware. The cause may even have nothing to do with you.

My youngest sister was distant and frosty with me from early 20s to our DF's death when she was nearly 60. In the house clearing days, when we talked a lot I found she had been holding a grudge against me, for something that had happened in childhood, which was not my responsibility and which she had completely misinterpreted. It has all been sorted and we are very close now. But I can still remember how aghast I was to find that she had been nursing this grudge for all those years and never told me.

Morgana Sat 11-Nov-17 17:43:58

Even though we are siblings, it doesn't mean we have lots in common. I only regularly see one of my siblings. We all live quite a distance apart and are quite happy to meet up maybe once a year. One or two of them meet more often. Of course there will always be that blood bond but my own family and friends are more important.

Norah Sat 11-Nov-17 19:04:14

I don't think your sister excluded you. Your brother is equal to your problem. I think 2 weeks is enough time to arrange 200 miles to a party. You decided not to attend to your own reasons. No blame to anyone that I can see.

When she called to thank you for the cards and presents it might have been best to not question and complain, to me.

LadyGracie Sat 11-Nov-17 20:19:17

I couldn’t accept an invitation to a party in 2 weeks 200 miles away, for all sorts of very valid reasons.
I haven’t seen or spoken to 3 of my siblings since my fathers funeral 4 years ago.

Bluegal Sat 11-Nov-17 21:00:23

Phew.... feel your upset for you hon. Just not sure I can make you feel any better.

Just don't know enough about the background and why your siblings didn't feel they could invite you to Croatia? Has there been any discussions about money, relations in the past?

You were invited to a party? I understand it was short notice but was it that the party was arranged at short notice? Could you have managed it, IF you had tried? I am only asking this because I know sometimes its easy to get peeved IF you feel it was arranged previously and you were an afterthought. I once arranged a Christening at short notice to fit in with relatives from abroad and my Mother dug her heels in and said, it was too short notice! It wasn't that she had anything else to do t.b.h. she just felt she was not considered first!! Just throwing ideas here hon because I don't know what kind of relationship you had before or anything. Don't take it wrong.

Hard for us GN ers to really advice because we don't know the background really......

All I can say is...IF, you feel you have done everything and your siblings have let you down, let it go....Move on with your own life and your own family and be happy.

ElaineI Sat 11-Nov-17 22:27:12

I am working in NHS and need to have 12 weeks notice of leave so no can't always be done with 2 weeks notice unless someone is so ill or dies and need to take sick leave - be signed off. Not the same if I was retired - could be done with lots of arranging. Sounds like twins have special relationship which others cannot understand.

jennymolly Sat 11-Nov-17 22:34:40

Thanks everyone for you input. I agree I must let it go. It is true that my sister was a very difficult child and teenager who caused a lot of trouble in the family from an early age. I was more placid and was made to give into my sister by my mother for an easy life. I went to grammar school and she didnt which always upset her. In adult life she married two men who were quite comfortably off (more so than my husband) which never bothered me but she always took pleasure in pointing out the difference in our circumstances. Shes very boastful about money and possessions. Oh heck, just read this through, why am I bothered ? I should be usd to her after all these years and just enjoy my life and not get upset by my sister.

jennymolly Sat 11-Nov-17 22:44:35

Just to add, the twins dont have or have ever had a particularly close relationship. My brother goes along with anything for an easy life and wouldnt ever think about how I might feel. He's quite critical about his twin behind her back but wouldn't be bothered to confront her about anything. Regarding the two weeks notice of the party, we have dogs and horses for which arrangements have to be made and trying to find kennels or dog sitters at the height of the holiday season is impossible.

Faye Sun 12-Nov-17 00:22:00

I also wondered why you bother jennymolly, you sister sounds like she has always been hard work.

My younger brother and sister are twins too and they have no contact. I think fraternal twins are no closer than other siblings.

Leticia Sun 12-Nov-17 06:51:23

She is jealous jennymolly and that resentment has carried on. She feels inferior which is why she is boastful- she realises underneath that being well off is no substitute for what you have.
Never underestimate the damage of failing the 11+ something that I can never understand why anyone wants to have back. It divided families into successes and failures. (I know 3 sets of twins divided like this). I was a 'failure' and so I know- it still upsets me although I was a 'success' in the end and got to the grammar school.
I also bet that she thinks you were the favourite in the family.
As an outsider, looking in, I expect she is envious of your lifestyle with dogs and horses - even if she doesn't want any herself.
Unless you ever get to the stage where you can have an honest, no blame, talk about it then you can't change it.

Leticia Sun 12-Nov-17 06:54:32

Even identical twins don't always get on. I taught a couple of girls and they were so alike that I couldn't tell them apart. They were in different classes but couldn't stand each other- continually bickering and telling tales about each other. If they were like that at school they must have been a nightmare at home!

Maggiemaybe Sun 12-Nov-17 08:16:54

What a shame. I would be so hurt as their mother if my children behaved like this, at whatever age. It does sound as though your sister is still harbouring old grudges, OP, and to be honest I can’t see any advantage to you in chasing her up. Your brother has behaved thoughtlessly as well, imho, but at least you still have a worthwhile relationship. flowers

BlueBelle Sun 12-Nov-17 09:08:47

I do understand your distress at your sister but truely for a brother to come all the way to visit and not even tell you that would be the worst bit for me especially as you say you keep in touch via fb that would have been so easy for him to let you know
I would just have to let it go but you won’t unfortunately be able to erase the fact that you were not kept in the loop by either of them, but mostly your brother and yet somehow you don’t seem cross with your brother ?

Jaycee5 Sun 12-Nov-17 09:10:51

Family dynamics are all different and so it is hard for people to really understand what is going on but I sympathise. My sister is very manipulative and I wasted a lot of time trying to make her understand or stop excluding me from what should be family events. It was the way she was brought up. My father didn't really want a second child and his way of dealing with my annoying appearance in the world was to act as if he only had one child.
It may be the way your parents treated you; her holding a childhood grudge; something specific that annoyed her; just that she prefers her brother's company; or she may be gaslighting. Not everyone even within a family has to be invited to everything so it really depends if there is a pattern.
She is your sister by accident of birth so you have to decide whether you want her in your life and how much effort you are prepared to make. If you do, then you have to find a way of letting it go as it cannot now be undone.

Persistentdonor Sun 12-Nov-17 09:13:50

Jennymolly you must be hurt beyond measure I imagine, as I have a similar relationship with my siblings, but it is your own life that you must bend to make you happy, and people who don't want to fit with you are not worth agonising over. flowers

radicalnan Sun 12-Nov-17 09:21:42

You say that both you and your hsband have been ill and that you were invited to the party and decided not to go. Maybe your family thought that they were being kind, not forcing you to decide about the holiday and that the party might be more manageable.

Whatever is the case, they are quite entitled to make their own arragements without any reference to you. You made a choice not to go to the party as it is some distance, so cannot blame them for that. Two week isn't very short notice.

Perhaps they wanted a holiday without the worry of two poorly people in tow, and cetainly your sister seems to think that you could not have afforded it anyway and did not want to put you in that position either.

What would make you feel better?

It sounds a bit like other people have been trying to be considerate and you haven't appreciated their efforts, they have obviously not made the choices you would have wanted them to make. They may have made clumsy efforts but they did have a right to suit themselves.

Your brother sounds like a lot of men, uncomplicated and happy to carry on being in touch, why do you hold him less responsible than your sister?

Men do seem to engage less and escape unscathed more often than women.

I would try to keep things cordial with both because they are your family and not evry family is the 'Waltons' in fact most are a bit fractured but family nonetheless.

kooklafan Sun 12-Nov-17 09:48:26

I know exactly how you feel Jennymolly. My two older sisters (not twins) have treated me like that all of my life, through my childhood and adulthood and even though I say I am used to it or have come to terms with it it still hurts. There is a year between them and two years between them and I. I even penned a small poem I think for cathartic reasons. This month, my BIL has gone away so one sister has the house and car to herself, two weeks in and I haven't heard from her at all, on the contrary, there has been a three day trip to Harrogate planned from which I was excluded and when I called her out on it last month she said she didn't ask me because "I would have said no" then she asked me "did I want to go?" obviously I said no because if she had really wanted me to go she would have asked before. They have invited me to the odd outing over the years but when I have gone they have both kind of ganged up and made fun of me. There was a short time in my life when I became close to the oldest sister as we both got jobs at the same place but the middle sister soon put a spoke in that wheel when she caused a huge amount of trouble by exaggerating the truth. I had said something about my oldest sister's DH and the middle sister saw it a great opportunity to nip our blossoming relationship in the bud and she made it sound a lot worse than what was actually said, I might add that my BIL left my older sister a couple of years ago for another woman. Very naive of me I know, anyway, please allow me to share my poem, as yet untitled ...

The problem with siblings, never spoken aloud,
is while two are great company, three are a crowd.
There's always a youngest and always an old,
then there's always the one who's left out in the cold.

You're told that they love you,
they say that they care,
They socialize often,
but your never there.

When invite's forthcoming,
the venue restrained,
then after refusal,
plans easily changed.

Unwanted, unneeded,
the fifth wheel, the spoke,
or welcomed along,
for the butt of the joke.

When disputes arise,
you're the Dish of the Day,
required nay expected,
to go out and play.

Your heart full of hope,
thus blind to the guile,
hidden behind,
the mask of a smile.

Bridges are mended,
and promises sold,
and then you discover,
you're back in the cold.

Deny it, Ignore it,
but know that it's true.
It's lonely and painful,
when there's more than two.

blue60 Sun 12-Nov-17 09:50:38

Yes, it does seem rather a hurtful thing to do. When I have experienced similar situations, I just back away and leave them all to get on with it.

I have learned that I rather like to run my life the way I want to, and will only engage in such activities if I want to, which is mostly never now and I'm happy in my life with my own family.

Perhaps the time has come to focus on your life with your DH and try different things. We don't have long on this earth and I intend to enjoy my time doing the things I want to do. Sounds selfish, but hey ho!

ajanela Sun 12-Nov-17 09:52:06

As you said in your 2nd and 3rd posts you know the problems your sister has. The 11+ strikes again! Plus the other things. Strange your brother or his wife didn't make contact.

You decided not to go to the party because of animals but I think you brother and sister may feel, 200 miles you could have driven there and back in a day. Long journey yes, but a special birthday with special people there. Would you have done it for a funeral?

Whatever, you have your life they have theirs and you have managed to get to 70 through difficult health with limited contact. At least you know how things stand.