Today I spoke with my therapist about the emotional hell I go through this time of year due to family issues.  The family issues are discussed in THIS POST if anyone is interested.  Talking with my therapist helped me realize a few things:

1)  I am very confused about how I am supposed to feel and act in regards to my family.  On one hand, it is apparently normal to feel linked to your family and desire a close bond.  On the other hand, one would be a fool to keep going back to the family that continuously hurts them just for the sake of genetics.

2)  It is by my own doing that I am so messed up about this right now.  My family has done nothing.  Quite literally.  I continue to reach out to them via email and Facebook, but I am then devastated when I don’t receive a response in a timely manner, if at all.  I am the one who has put distance between my family and myself (something I DO NOT regret).  I am the one who keeps reaching out, even when they don’t reach back.  I am the one left feeling ignored and rejected when I don’t hear from them.

Which leads me to 3)  I need to practice radical acceptance in this situation.  What I WANT is to have a close family who loves and supports me, no matter what.  What I HAVE is a family that doesn’t care about me, isn’t interested in me, has no desire for contact with me, doesn’t want to bother with me, and doesn’t have time for me.  I suppose those statements may or may not be true.  Either way, I do not have the relationship with my family I may want, and I need to understand that it is not going to happen right now.  I need to accept that they are not responding to me the way I want.  I can sit and stew and be hurt and angry about it.  Or, I can accept it and take action to not put myself in the position to be let down and disappointed.

I have decided that I will not email with or send Facebook messages to any member of my family.  Since the birthdays are coming up, I will send a brief Facebook message wishing them each happy birthday.  If I receive anything from them for my birthday or Christmas, I will politely thank them.  That will be the extent of my contact with them, though.  I am open to possible reconciliation in the future, but that is not NOW.  I need to focus on TODAY, and the reality of this situation, or else I am going to continue in misery over this.  I know the only way we can all be brought back together is by open, honest communication.  I know my parents.  I know my siblings.  I don’t think that will ever happen, though I would welcome it if it did.  I have tried to make that happen to no avail.  That’s fine.  Forget yesterday.  Forget the maybes of tomorrow.  I am going to focus on today and accept the situation at hand.

Categories: Borderline Personality Disorder, BPD, DBT, Mental Illness | Tags: , , | 5 Comments

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5 thoughts on “Time to try RADICAL ACCEPTANCE

  1. Bourbon

    I can relate to this A LOT. It took me years to stop reaching out to my parents expecting something back that I never ever got. Years of continual daily disappointment and hurt. I thought I’d never stop doing it, but I did. You can too xx

    • Thanks for the encouragement! It always helps me to know that other people struggling with what I do have accomplished what I want. Good for you! 🙂

  2. Mandi

    So it’s not just me? I had therapy today and like MANY sessions, it focused on the relationship with my parents! I thought I had a pretty normal childhood, 2 parent household. I had a good relationship with them (that I now understand wasn’t really good, I was just being a doormat) until I got sick about a year ago with what I now know is BPD! Then came the need for them to PROVE that they didn’t cause my “problem”. We tried mediation with my parents, my brother and his wife, my husband and myself. It was terrible. Their thoughts about me were worse than my own! That was March and I ended up back in the hospital the same night. No matter WHAT I do or convince myself that I don’t CARE about what they think… apparently my subconscious DOES care.

    I HATE that I’M the one working on getting better, that it’s always ME with the problem. That I’ll NEVER be good enough. That unconditional love doesn’t seem to exist unless I’m living life the way THEY want me to.

    Especially after having my own girls, I just don’t understand how parents can do that. Even if I disagreed with my girls, I can’t imagine that I wouldn’t be there for them when they needed me.

    I’m not over it yet. They’re definitely my #1 trigger. But I’m working on it. I think I’ll get to a point where I can see it all more clearly without guilt and resentment. I think you will too. 🙂

    If it were me… and of course this is an individual decision, I wouldn’t even send them notes on birthdays and holidays. I would just make a clean break. There’s nothing wrong with that. They have the choice to reach out to you as well. Just a thought.

    • Thanks for your response. I’m sorry that you’ve had to go through such tough times with your family, too. Glad to hear that you’re working on it and getting better. I hate how I still feel drawn to my parents, too. Nothing seems to mess me up like interacting with them. So awful!

  3. Pingback: What is she trying to pull? « Struggling with BPD

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