Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Going No Contact with A Rejecting Family is Kind of Redundant

Friends have stepped forward and all have been understanding as to why I had to make this hard the decision to basically walk away from my family. These friends local and far away have been invaluable to me beyond measure.  Four different ones told me this was a brave and courageous step to make.

 I know I went no contact for three years in my early 20s. There was a reason for this. Then it put a stop to overt severe verbal abuse. I left my parent's home after a year home from college and basically disappeared into the vapor. I had worked 3 jobs and paid a small amount of rent for one small upstairs bedroom in my parent's house to survive and saved money for a down payment on a car. My parents were angry all the time, because I had not gotten a very high paying job. Downstairs my father would scream with cuss words included about my failures to obtain the upper middle class quick enough.

My new grant based job paid 14 dollars an hour in 1990 but it was part time. Sometimes I am astonished, and think I had my bachelors by age 21 and that job then too. When I look back, I think so wonder I basically broke down physically even, when I was laid off from my two main jobs. All this stress formed the foundation for my later health crash.

This is when I had my grant art job and substitute taught and did other jobs as well such as daycare over the summer and factory and other work. They were angry I was back home and did not get a regular teaching job. Unbeknownst to them, my severe lung problems cut me off the roster of two teaching jobs, including one where the principal told me, I was in no shape to take over the volleyball team and that is why he could not hire me as the middle-school art teacher even though my name was on the top of the list.

 I would leave home, packing my car tight to move into a boarding house in an old 4 bedroom house for women, 20 miles in the next city with my father throwing paint cans at me, some full and empty, as I raced out of there. My siblings would talk me into coming back three years later as Thanksgiving loomed.

 I guess back then, I didn't think about the overt stuff, or later what years worth of  behind the scenes "smear campaign's" would do to a person's reputation, especially one that lived long distance and could not keep the same amount of contact with relatives as the others due to health and lack of cash.

Well I went "no contact" about a week and half ago. This time, I do not plan to go back. I had to go through the process of letting go [some may say giving up] but I have grown to be a person now that has enjoyed so many good people who love me, this has given me the strength to walk away from toxic people who do not.

Trust me there will be no letters of apology, or any tears or asking me "What is wrong?" from the other side. I was prepared for this and am not looking for any reaction and the less the better as I walk on.  She has the other family members under so much control, that I was able to unfriend so many people on a social website, and have NOT one, write me or ask me why, except for my brother who thought I was upset with him solely because he had not called in a few months who cussed me out, with F bombs. That hurt, not having one ally among the family, but then these are some real extreme dysfunctional dynamics.

During my year of decision [see below] I spent a year trying to get closer to some family members only to realize it was futile. My mother came first to all. She controlled them all.  I was very sad the first few days, mourning them and even crying, but then I sat back and thought, "well they really weren't there to begin with." and dried my tears. I had cried, cajoled, tried to be understood, tried to have close relationships with people who simply weren't interested in listening and never were going to offer one ounce of validation. Some people don't even want your love if you have it to offer. One can't spend their lives visiting empty wells, shared DNA or not. It just does not work!

I never could share my true thoughts, opinions, feelings with them. In the real essence they were strangers. I felt closer to even people I knew through church, with no other contact then I ever did any of my relatives. Trust me I tried everything over the years, it wasn't happening. At least now, I have faced facts they as people never valued many things I did.

 The matriarch tried for two days calling me 12 times, and then gave up. 48 hours and that was over. I do not expect to hear back from her again, unless there is some planned manipulation for the future. Perhaps she has washed her hands of me on her end. I never heard anything from my siblings except to be cussed out by one on a social website private message, I almost was going to keep in contact with but then realized the hard way his first and only loyalties go to my mother.

I went through a year of making this decision. Friends understand why I maintained low contact for so long, and my personal circumstances. I think I held on to a false dream too that once I or my husband became more financially secure or other things changed such as my health and weight, that one day I would be "accepted". Never fall into that trap, anyone who doesn't love you today or judges you for health problems or status is better let go. Thankfully I always lived far away in other cities or small towns and "had my own life" but the healthiest thing to do became letting go.

 One of my biggest motives to stick around for this long and to put up with what I did, was to have relationships with my nieces and nephews, but even that grew harder and harder as I could not visit and I would only see them 1-2 times a year and only at my mother's house and nowhere else. In fact they are who I will miss the most.

Some people are not born into families that love them or where they belong. This happened to me. It is actually one of the most painful things I have gone through in this life even beyond my health problems. One thing it has taught me is to appreciate those who are loving, and who do see you as a person standing before them and who do care. Those people are my real family.

The Social Stigma of Being Supersized in One's Family

My Mother and Me

Sister Thin, Sister Fat


  1. Darling girl. I wrote a post on this today, although I said "friends" not family, abiding a pre-established aggreement not to ever mention I HAD family. I am so sorry this happened to you because I know how horrible it feels. I'm not feeling very eloquent right now, so I'm going to read some of your other posts and try to get to know you better. Strength to you.

  2. Hi I checked out your friends article, Therese, it was good, a lot of the same principles apply, "there just not that into you", that definitely nails it. It does hurt, you are right about that. I sent the letters here too, the phone calls etc. While I wasn't totally ignored, and helped a few times--probably sadly to keep me off their doorsteps, I was pushed away over and over. There is a point you just have to walk. I am glad you had the supportive friend who gave you good advice. This is something I've struggled with, how to deal with rejection but self-love means not seeking after those who "just aren't that into us. Strength to you too. :)

  3. Peep, thank you for sharing your story.

    I understand to some extent how you feel. My Shriner stepfather handed me over to his Shriner buddies, so my life as a child and teen was definitely abusive.

    I finally left home in the middle of the night shortly after turning 18. My step-father told me that I'd never see my siblings again if I did not return, so I had a decision to make. Stay and be abused or submit to the abuse and stay in the family. What kind of choice was that anyway?

    I did not return and he made good on his promise to cut me out of the family. Sometimes you have to go "no contact" if the abuse is such that there is no way to live a healthy life if you did stay in contact. Everybody wants a family but when family does not not function like family, and is run by someone who hates, you, what else can you do? When the person who controls the family is determined to be your enemy, you have to break contact. It is the only way.

  4. Hi Anon.

    So sorry you had such a horrible stepfather. That is terrible. Totaly understand why you would flee when you were 18. When I left at 21, it was kind of a fleeing situation, I waited til one parent was not home on purpose so I couldn't be stopped. I remember looking for housing in secret and having to do the move under incredible duress.

    That is sad he told you submit or never see your siblings again. Mine made threats too as I left. I never should have gone back later but I know in my case dealing with severe illness and poverty was part of that desperation so I will forgive myself. I was just trying to survive the best I could. I am glad in your case you did NOT return. Yes they will make threats and will control others so they have nothing to do with you. In my case, my mother controls the family completely and managed to turn the entire family system against me. She taught others merely to "tolerate" me at best and to insult me at worse.

    I walked away finally knowing the only way was to break contact. That's right the only healthy thing to do is walk away. Some families are not really families at all, there is no love there. If the top person hates you and the whole system revolves around her, there is no recourse. I am sorry you went through the same thing too. I will pray for you.

  5. I found this article it is a good one.


  6. I know all too well what you have been through and I wish you the best of everything in life! I, too, went no contact with my family of origin about year now and it hasn't been easy but it's really what you have to do. I'm always moved to tears by articles like this. Stay strong & be well! And, thank you so much for writing this & sharing because I and everyone else who reads this knows that they are not alone.

  7. Thanks so much anon. God bless you. I hope I could help others going through the same thing not feel so alone and sorry you have faced it too! :( No it is not easy not at all.

  8. In June last year I opened facebook and found that a video had been posted of my sister giving a speech at a large formal lunch in honour of my parent's golden wedding anniversary. We had not been told about this event or invited. It has absolutely devastated me that my family would do this tp me and my kids. We have cut off all ties with them and I do not expect to ever see them again. But it has hurt me so badly. I can't even begin to understand how my sister and uncle who seem to have largely organised this could do it. Never in a million years could I have done this to anyone. I am not sleeping, am in tears every day, and I started self harming which was very strange - apparently can be part of grieving. I think what has hurt the most is having to tell my kids that half their family doesn't want anything to do with our family and having them see how severely it has all affected me. Not quite your situation, but I can understand a little about your strength in taking the steps you have. Best wishes.

  9. I'm so sorry to hear you've been through so much with your family. I hope their guilt trips never get to you. You deserve better! Kind regards, Clint

  10. Thank you so much for sharing your story. I can relate to so much of what you said. I have been no contact with my entire family off and on for about 10 years now. I understand the feeling of smear campaigns happening especially when you are living far away. It happened to me, too. I didn't realize it until I went to an Easter celebrate about 4 years ago and realized that everything I had told my Mom in confidence she had spread to the entire family. Her sisters ridiculed and humiliated me publicly. It was terrible. Since then I've been trying to work through all the shame I feel just for being who I am. It is really tough. People have told me the same thing that you've been told and that's "if you do well in life maybe someday you can talk again" but I reject that idea. Love should be unconditional. I also stuck around for my niece and nephews but it's finally to the point where I trust none of them so I can't even put myself through that on the mere, very slight chance that I will get to see them. Again, thank you so much for sharing your story. It reassures me that I'm not alone even when I feel like it much of the time. You deserve much better than the way you have been treated. Sending you good thoughts through your healing process.

    1. Thanks PR, welcome to the blog. I am sorry you had to go no contact too and had been smeared as well. Yeah I was not allowed to tell anyone anything that didn't get passed on. It operated like the Stasti with spys and "reporters" while of course I was left in the dark. It was weird to find out a great-aunt died via the internet by accident. Yes they will get others to reject you and publically humiliate you. Ugh about doing well in life and then going back to them. I had the thought Oh if I lose weight or get rich-Lotto being my only chance, maybe they would embrace me but I thought oh my goodness no way. If someone treats you like dirt when down and out, nothing changes if our circumstances got better except they'd be just trying to make use of it. Yeah my nieces and nephews kept me in the game 15 more years then I would have been. I have to admit I am extraordinarily disappointed they all turned out to be the most obedient children on the planet. They will follow in their parents footsteps and were already being turned against me. Maybe one who wrote me a little bit will come find me. If she sees this blog one day, I would like to see her again but sadly I know they have already fed her poison to smear me to her. My sister would wrinkle her face and nose just from walking into my apt with my niece and nephews to convey the instant message I was a "lesser". I am glad I was able to have you feel less alone. I know this is very hard. I'm praying for you too.