Wednesday, April 01, 2009

and now ... for the Airing of our Grievances

Tonight, I had to solemnly swear that I wouldn't write about any of the issues that are happening in regards to my family in Massachusetts for at least the next few days. Weeks. Possibly months.

I might never have the opportunity to write about my family, again.

But I can say this much.

If I could gather all of the incidents and stories that have occurred in my family over the past few years and compile them in to a book, no one would believe that it was nonfiction. As I'm writing this, I'm still shaking my head over what has transpired in the past 24 hours.

The stuff that happens in my family just doesn't happen in real life.

Or, maybe it does and I'm sheltered?

If you are familiar with Seinfeld, you might recall the Costanza's celebration of Festivus. Even though the show has been off the air for ten years, sometimes when tensions run high at our house, either Charlie or I will say, "And now, for the Airing of our Grievances..."

Usually, that lightens the mood and provides an excellent segue to discuss what it is that's bothering us. You know, get it out in the open - off our chests, that sort of thing. So, I'm calling on you to air your grievances to help me feel better about my own personal situation. Which in turn, will hopefully help you see some humor in your own familial turmoil. AND, possibly help someone who is in the throes of something similar. Maybe me?

So no one feels singled out - or perhaps recognized - I'll encourage you to keep it anonymous. But please tell me what's the bat shit craziest thing that your family has ever done, and more importantly, how you managed it or wish you managed it, with love and grace.

I'll take what I consider to be the top stories and put them up for a vote.

The winner gets a brand new cowbell that you may want to consider wearing around your neck so that you always feel happy.

Or, you could put it around a certain relatives neck so you always know when they are coming and you have ample time to run. And hide.

64 comments:

  1. Well, my mom and dad were buying my grandparents farm, they had 4 years left to pay on it when my dad passed away (my grandpa had passed 2 years before my dad)Not a week after the service, my grandma called my mom, I my brothers and I to her house and informed my mom that they were never buying it, just renting. The land contract suddenly came up missing and after 3 long years in the court system, the truth came out and all my mom had to do was pay what was owed, plus 1 extra payment because that was the ONLY check stub she couldn't find. I haven't spoken to my dad's family since then and really, I can just do without them. My dad and grandpa were the only 2 in the family that had any sense, so really it doesn't bother me any.

    ~Missin' my dad in Michigan

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  2. My older sister retains ownership of every gift that she has ever given and when a person dies those items should be returned to her.

    My father was 87, on hospice for congestive heart failure, but he was mentally all there so it was difficult to think that the end was so near. He died early on Saturday after Thanksgiving 2007, the housekeeper/aide called me at 7:20 to say she thought he wasn't breathing. I called the hospice nurse then went to the house and he was so nice & warm, I just didn't know if he was gone, but I called my two sisters & brother to let them know.

    The hospice nurse & my brother arrived, the official time of death was around 8:45 and I left to go home to get my husband up & fed (he is totally disabled from strokes), took a shower, put my husband in the car and went back to my parent's house, arriving at 10 A.M., ONE HOUR & 15 minutes after the official time of death. I walked into the kitchen to find my older sister (executor & POA for Mom) talking about Dad's clothes (which she wanted for the homeless people) and things, how we could start taking "our" stuff immediately. She went around the house & filled her car, the rest of us just sat around in shock.

    I pretty much laughed it off until I found out much later that she also removed the nice warm pajama tops FROM HIS DEAD BODY because they would be so appreciated by the homeless people.

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  3. My mother was pretty far gone with dementia & my father was trying to get rid of stuff in the house. Every time any of us four children were there, he asked us to look around (especially the basement) and take what we wanted.

    My mother used to bake tens of thousands of cookies at Christmas (she sold them) and my father had very heavy aluminum cookie sheets made for her, he also gave each of his children four cookie sheets, same as Mom's, when we went out on our own. In 2002 I bought a KitchenAid mixer and began making a lot of Mom's cookies at Christmas.

    One time I was in the basement and saw one of Mom's cookie sheets, I took it. When I went upstairs my older sister saw it, took it out of my hands and said, "I want this and I deserve it because I have two houses."

    I laughed it off, but that was the moment that I decided that if there was anything else of Mom's that I wanted I should try to find it myself elsewhere. For the next several years I was able to find everything I wanted at a very nice cooking school/housewares store, garage sales, ebay, etc.

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  4. Mine will definitely not be the craziest, but I can't gripe about it on my blog, so THANK YOU.

    Ahem. My father in law divorced my mil when hubs and I graduated high school. Waited until the kids were out of the house, how considerate. Unwilling to get counseling or attempt to work it out at all, hubs lost all respect for him, and chose to have nothing to do with him.

    Right thing to do? I can't say. However, FIL married a new woman and she is a pot stirrer. She's constantly getting my FIL all worked up about his kids and trying to get him to forge a relationship that reeks of bunnies and rainbows.

    It's not going to happen, yet somehow I get stuck in the middle of the drama, wanting to give the grandparents some familiarity with my kids since they're not EVIL, but not wanting to get the guilt trips, the pleas for intervention, and the DRAMA. One innocent email inquiring about a sick relative and I'm BOMBARDED with harassment. Hubs says don't bother, but I'm not QUITE that heartless. I think they deserve to know a little about the grandkids, but if I give an inch...

    Okay, I'm done. Thank you for allowing me to air my grievance.

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  5. My dad died almost a year ago. My parents had been divorced for over thirty years. During the time my dad was ill my mother took every opportunity she could to spew venmom about him and attack me for taking care of him
    "Would you ocme running to my bed side if I was so ill?"
    "I NEVER ask you for help" which was so ironic considering I had been giving her $200 a month for two years because she is so financially irresponsible. And my husband goes to her house once a month to do chores for her.
    "He doesn't deserve you. Must I remind you what a terrible father he is" And then she'd list all his transgressions. AGAIN.

    While my siblings and I were in Indiana planning his funeral, the day after he died, she called each one of us and gave us a verbal beating for daring to honor him with our respect and presence after he died. She asked us if we planned to work so hard to carry out all her wishes and then said "You won't. I don't trust you kids."

    Now that he is gone she continues to slip snide comments in about him and his family every chance she gets.

    Bottom line, she hated her ex-husband, more than she ever loved the children she had with him.

    And now she wonders why I've "seemed a little distant" for the last couple of years.

    Real life? A mother surely does not say this kind of thing to her child in real life...

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  6. Well, my husband's parents are crazy. I could go on and on and on and on about how crazy they are. Seriously. Currently, DH is not speaking to them and they are not welcome in our home right now (this is since August and their last visit, which did NOT go well to say the least!). Both of my husbands sisters have gone YEARS without talking to their parents at various points in their lives. It's just a very bad, very sad situation.

    My family is close, and we have normal "issues" where we get it off our chest and move on.

    I know I didn't give any specific examples of my in-laws being crazy (there are sooo many...how to pick!!!), but I guess the difference in my situation and yours is at least in mine, the siblings (and siblings spouses) are all in agreement on how to handle things with their parents/inlaws. That makes it much easier!

    Kelly(Houston)

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  7. I don't know if this is the best, but I have an uncle that is a bit strange. He's been married several times, no kids, and lives in his own kind of reality. When my dad's parents died 10 days apart last summer, we walked in to the visitation to see him trying to pull my grandmother out of the casket to "get a better look at her". If that's not bat-shit crazy, I don't know what is.

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  8. My mother died of cancer last April. My sister went on a 2 week vacation to Florida - when our mother, was given days to live. Mom died on the 6th day of their vacation. I called her and told her they better get their flights figured out and all - - she called back and said they decided they weren't coming back early. We could either have the funeral without them or wait until they got back. (now, she & my mom had a good relationship, & she was always the favorite daughter). My dad was upset but insisted that we wait for them to come back. There's much more to the story, but let's just say, I have a family of self-absorbed siblings. I've decided that I will continue to take care of my dad, as I did my mom, and be the best person I can be, even if I'm in a family of a**holes.........

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  9. My Family Craziness:
    My mother and aunt aren't speaking...oh for about a decade now. Why do you ask? Although I my aunt won't say why she stopped speaking to my mother I gather it had something to do w/ her divorce and subsequent marriage to someone of ANOTHER RACE. (I mean really - isn't that a little 1960's of her?)

    We won't even begin to start on my husband's family. Not enough space...

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  10. My father married his SISTER. Do you not remember that story? If that doesn't get me a cowbell, I'd like a hound dog and banjo please.

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  11. Where do I start? I know that I will make you feel better, that's for sure. Well, I hope it does.

    We'll start with my absent father, who moved to the 3rd world when I was 18mo despite me having a severe medical condition that required specialised hospital treatment, who left when I was 5, declined to pay child support, never turned up for any arranged visits when I was a child, didn't turn up for my own wedding, and hasn't bothered to meet his grandchildren (3yrs & 21mo) despite frequently visiting his other daughter who lives 10 miles down the road.

    And then his new wife, who used to shout at us as kids, and at our last visit (way back in the early 90's) chucked us out of the house in an Arab country on a weekend with no money or our suitcases, and neglected to tell our father who didn't find out for 3 days. She wouldn't let us see our half-sister for 8 years. She's the one who told my father she would divorce him if he came to my wedding.

    Don't forget my uncle, who abused my sister and I when we were kids, but my grandmother refused to believe it happened so wouldn't have us in the house.

    And of course my stepfather, who physically abused my sister, mother and I, and then walked out on us when I was 15, on Christmas day, and flew to Canada without telling us where he was for 2 weeks.

    My sister, who when I had severe postpartum depression with my first-born, told me to 'get over myself' and hung up on me when I was suicidal. And when she had DT's from cocaine withdrawal, beat me up so badly I had to hide from her under a bridge in the Florida Keys when on holiday.

    And my brother in law, who cyber-harassed me with threatening emails for 3 months - when challenged (the idiot's IP address was registered to his office), told my sister that I had tried to get him fired and got a restraining order so I am not allowed to contact them (that was 4 years ago). They have not contacted us since.

    My first boyfriend, who tried to strangle me when I decided to break up with him as he was getting too possessive.

    And my second boyfriend, whom I caught in bed with my best friend's flatmate.

    And last by no means least my alcoholic mother who nearly suffocated my daughter when she was 6mo old.

    I could go on, but I think you get the picture.

    I think I could use a bit more cowbell, please!

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  12. I am watching my 2 yr old niece. I have to either take her back this weekend or next, to her parents. They fucking suck. They are living at an extended stay hotel because they don't have a house to live in. Her father is a felon who uses that as an excuse not to get a job, and her mother (my sister) is working 2 jobs with 2-3 hours in between each one, because he says God wants them to be together. Neither one of them are fit to be parents, but I have to summon the strength to place her back into their arms knowing what a shitty life she's going to have to live compared to being with us. It sucks.

    I hope your family situation improves. Although I tend to think my family could give you a run for your money. No, really.

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  13. Most bat shit crazy thing? Eeee gads. Wouldn't know where to start. I remember my mom going nuts in our car when I was about ten. She started screaming out the car windows at passers by. My dad pulled off the hwy on a gravel side road. He kicked her out of the car. Somehow she kept clinging to the car so he got out. Then she managed to get behind the wheel so we all got out (me and my siblings). She tried to run my dad over and ended up about 5 inches from my sister's legs.

    My mom has been emotionally unstable most of my life. She's improved and she's awesome with my son (supervised mind you) so I've forgiven a lot. My brother is emotionally unstable too. Most of his stuff revolves around obsessive political and religious leanings. Every couple of months he'll call me out of the blue and holler on the phone about what a heathen idiot I am.

    Fun times. You are not alone. Lots of dysfunction out there. I think its worse in bigger families. More variables and more disagreements over lifestyles and decisions.

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  14. My husband's Uncle D married a woman his parents did not approve of. They did not attend the wedding. Years later, when I met, dated and then married my husband, I didn't even know he had an uncle for the longest time, because Uncle D also wasn't on speaking terms with his sisters over something else. That family holds onto some serious grudges!! Also, my Dad's mom was the oldest of 10. Everytime he would go back home to visit, he was told which aunts/uncles he wasn't allowed to visit, because his mom was currently feuding with them. His mom was killed in a car accident when I was 4. She had been in a feud with one of her brothers and had tried to make-up with him a few days before the accident, but he refused to talk to her. He felt bad about it for the rest of his life. I don't hold grudges, it's not worth it!

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  15. Hmm, so many choices. I'm the only "normal" person in my family.

    My grandmother had 7 children. One is in prison for life, one is deceased. The other 5 are deadbeats, my mother included. 6 years ago she suffered a heart attack and I went to visit her in her state. I tried to convince her to come live with me. None of her children were willing to care for her at all. She said she liked her independence and continued to live on her own. A year later she called and asked if the offer was still open, I said sure. I flew down, packed up her apartment into a U-haul and drove her across 2 states to my house, at my expense. She lived with us one year. It was the year from hell. Lots of family drama and tears. Her kids calling and asking for money, since she no longer had to pay rent, she had extra. I hated being involved. My mother convinced my GM that she needed to come live with her, and share in the rent. My GM obliged and moved back. One year later she was in the hospital diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer that had spread to about every internal organ. She was a mess. The family just abandoned her in a hospital. I was 7 months pregnant and had to fly down and talk to doctors and coordinate care. I flew home. She died 2 weeks later. My mother was the next of kin and had the legal right to make all decisions. She authorized for my GM to be cremated. Not one member of the family was willing to contribute anything toward the 675.00 fee. I was so overly emotional and angry about their disrespect. The funeral home would not move forward until they were paid, so they kept her in "storage" Finally after 2 weeks, my DH just told me to pay for it myself so I could have some peace. I completely wrote off my family, including my mom and 2 sisters after that day over 2 years ago.

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  16. Susan in Missouri4/1/09, 11:54 AM

    Okay...so my dad was married to this "woman" when he was in the Army and stationed in California where he lived growing up. He got out of the military and came home only to hear from his own FATHER that this "woman" had slept with my dads brother and their father caught them IN THE ACT! My dad divorced her and then met my mom years later and they married. A few years ago, my dad (who is computer illiterate in the worse sense of the word!) called me and said "I have some sort of virus or something on my computer! Will you come take a look at it for me?" I said "Yes. When you go to work, just leave the computer on and stay logged in." When I got to his house a couple of hours later, I got on the computer. At that time, he had AOL as his ISP and it kept saying "You've got mail!". Being the IDIOT that I am, instead of turning the volume down, I decided that I would just open the email and close it to shut it up. Well, the title of said email was "Wedding Ring?" and it was from a woman named Darlene. The clue phone never rang for me at the time, but I was curious as to why this woman was asking my father (who has been married to my mother for almost 35 years!) about his wedding ring? What business was it of hers? As I opened the email, I got a sick sinking feeling in my stomach. I read it (as you do in situations as this!) and it said "Just curious, but did you ever find your old wedding ring?" Didn't really give it a second thought and went about trying to delete the virus. The more I thought about it...the more it ate at me! So, being the one who set up his computer to begin with, I knew his password and decided I was going to find out what this womans intentions were. I know...I know...it was SO wrong on SO many levels! But, my dad walked out on my mom when I was 16 with NO explaination and was allowed to return to our house and resume his role 3 years later with no answers as to where he had been or why he left in the first place! If he was planning on leaving my mom AGAIN, I was going to make her aware of it so that SHE was holding all the cards in HER hands and he was left without a pot to piss in (excuse the language). Anyway, long story short, I found TONS of past and present emails from this "woman" named Darlene. (Clue phone is STILL not ringing at this point...must be busy?!) The emails to/from him talked about sex and things they had done together when my father had made trips to California (he still has a brother and two sisters that live in California). I was mortified! There were things in these emails that I never even knew my father (age 67!!!!!) knew ANYTHING about! So, a few days go by...it's eating at me constantly! I start thinking "Darlene...Darlene...WHY is this name sounding more and more familiar to me? OH. MY. GOD!! IT'S HIS FIRST WIFE! THE ONE WHO SLEPT WITH HIS BROTHER!!!!!!" So, I decided to call my older sister who at the time was 7 mo. pregnant with my neice. She said...and this is a direct quote!..."If you tell mom before I have this baby I swear to GOD I will shoot you between the eyes!!!!!" Well, I was in now way shape or form going to leave my mom holding the bags if my dad up and left her AGAIN! So, I called her best friend and asked her advice. She said "Print EVERY email out that you find. This weekend, we will get her alone and give her the emails and let her decide what she wants to do with it." So, we did. She confronted my dad the night he came home from a hunting trip with my son and he at first denied everything until she flopped the emails in front of him. He started to say negative things about me and my mom...being the wonderful loving person she is said to him "Don't you DARE push this blame of on your daughter!" A few days later, my dad apologized to me for putting me in that position...and my mom let him stay. Never understood that one. Something like that happened to me??? HA! See you in COURT!

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  17. My younger sister has a bit of an emotional problem that we think is due to a hormonal imbalance.

    At the age of 14, she supposedly took pictures of herself topless and sent them to boys in her grade via an online chatroom. This led to an emotional breakdown where she threatened to jump out her window and kill herself which led to a stay in a mental hospital.

    Thinking she was cured, my parents moved her, and my younger sister to another state to start over.

    In this new state, she became friends with bad influences who used her. One of them introduced her to her boyfriend's uncle who she started a relationship with. At the age of 17, my intelligent sister became pregnant with a 30-year-old drug-dealing and using, drinking, abusive, illegal Cuban immigrant's baby. This was her second pregnancy. The first had been aborted.

    She had the baby, moved in with this guy, allowed him to drive her and the baby while high and made my parents deal with this crap for months.

    Finally she wised up and left him, moving back in with my parents. He would call and leave nasty messages on her voicemail, essentially saying "I love you, I miss you, I hate you, I'm going to kill you." She was dealing with the situation legally as best she could, went back to school, was working and seemed to be making progress.

    Fast forward a year, and she says she has a job as an assistant at a law firm, making amazing money and gets an apartment close to work, leaving the baby in my mom's care during the week. Turns out it was all a lie. She was in fact doing drugs, possibly dealing, getting arrested for petty theft, getting evicted, etc.

    Now after all she's put my parents through and abandoning her son, she wants to make amends. i feel that she's using my parents again, but my mom trusts her and wants me to forgive her. I haven't talked to her since this last episode, and don't know when I will again. How can I forgive her?

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  18. I'm pretty sure I could help you feel more "normal" with some of my crazy family stories. One is about my dad's two uncles that passed away last summer. Lets call them LB and RB to protect the innocent. RB molested my father when he was little and was not spoken to by most of my family ever since. In fact I never even met him. Since my father wasn't his only victim, and he had some other legal troubles, he claimed LB's identity about 20 years ago. Last summer the real LB passed away of respiratory failure after battling cancer. LB was a good man not to be confused with RB who was living as LB and living in the same small town. Less than 24 hours after LB's death, RB (also known as LB) passed away of respiratory failure too. There was quite a lot of confusion at the hospital and at the funeral home.
    Then on the other side of my family you have the crack addict aunt that seduced my grandfather (her FIL) on his death bed a few weeks after my grandmother died.
    Then you have my wonderful grandfather. He divorced my dad's mom and had his 2nd wife moved in three weeks later. Then after lots and lots of affairs, left wife # 2 and moved away with a girlfriend. While dying in the hospital he had both ex-wives and the girlfriend waiting on him and taking care of him. All three of them in the same room. You'd think he was a good guy or something to have three women taking care of him like that.
    There's plenty more. Just picked three of my stories that wouldn't take writing a book to explain. We have lots of affairs, drugs, abuse. You name it and we've got it.
    I think most of us have some good family drama. I'm sorry you are going through all this with your family right now. It is a roller coaster of emotions I'm sure.

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  19. I. AM. DYING.

    Brothers marrying sisters?!

    Pulling bodies out of caskets?!

    Taking pajamas off of corpses?!

    You! and You! and You! and You! You're not alone!!

    Is this making anyone else feel better or just me??

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  20. um... hmmm. Nutty stuff ... Is the moon rising over Venus from the left or something?? ;-)

    The only thing I got is my sister ... blogging about ... ME! They are all lies!! Lies I tell you! ;-)

    See you soon. Glad we will have 4 + hours to talk in May! ;-)
    Love, Marg.

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  21. It does make me feel better, especially HL's post, since her mother and mine were apparently separated at birth. Sigh.

    my inlaws?!?!?! I can't even begin. but it wouldn't be fair, since my father-in-law is mentally ill and has been hospitalized. so he's more than just "quirky," and that family is quite scarred.

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  22. i will add.... taking clothes off your dead father, to give to the homeless.......... makes my crazy, selfish family seem, "normal", nahh, - but it is funny in a morbid way - thanks for asking, helps put some perspective on our crazy families....

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  23. Oh. My. God. You can't make this sh*t up.

    Thanks Jen!

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  24. Yeeesh. It's making me feel better, but also worse. There is an awful lot of sadness out there. Everyday, I think to myself...if I can just stay focused, keep my eyes on what is important, maybe I can protect my kids from this type of craziness and help them grow into righteous people. Not like some of these ridiculous aholes...

    MY FIL started to build another little house on his property when we got engaged. Shortly after DH and I got married, he moved out on my MIL into the other house. They still act married, still are legally married, just live in two separate houses in the same yard. But they never actually talk about it. As far as my Husband is concerned, my FIL still lives with is MIL. Not a word has ever been spoken about this arrangement. This has been 7 years so far. But man...this story is nothing compared to what some of y'all are dealing with.

    I can't imagine trying to come to terms with this type of pain and heartache. And trying to find space in your heart to love and forgive the unloveable and unforgiveable.

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  25. When I was PG with twins my mother broke her hip (Dad died years ago). She refused all outside help, including PT, never recovered, stayed home in filth (which I cleaned while PG with twins) until my brothers and I had to go to court (in MA) to get guardianship of her. It was practically impossible to do this despite going to court hearings every month. In and out of nursing homes, she hired a laywer, stopped speaking to my brothers (I had newborn twins and a 3 y/o so I was golden)...alot of drama, irreparable pain and separations. She eventually died safe and cared for of natural causes. I miss her still but felt relieved that my brothers and I had weathered the storm and done the right thing. Recently learned that one brother never agreed with the court stuff, wanted her home (alone b/c you know he wasn't going to be the one cleaning up after her) and is now holding up the estate, which has been open over a year.

    I SWEAR we are a totally "normal" college-educated NE family. If I said it once, I must have said it 1000x -- NOONE WOULD EVER BELIEVE what is going on with my family.

    Stay checked in no matter how excruciating. You will feel enormously comforted by the fact that you spoke your mind (respectfully) and stayed true to your heart. Those feelings will take me throught the rest of my life. I don't have any regrets and I know my mother knew that I loved her.

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  26. My Sister in law (SIL) was in charge of paying bills for her deceased mother's estate which she jointly owned with her two brothers. Come to find out she had "stolen" over $10 grand in less than 6 months. Once found out, she then proceeded to sell her percentage of the condo that was jointly owned to a loan shark and skipped out on all of the maintenance fees she owed her brothers for the last 2 and a half years. All because she is trying to support her worthless kids (who are close to 40 years old). WTF is it with families??

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  27. Personally, I feel a wicked lot better ;)

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  28. I've got a recipe to raise kids who will struggle to be happy their whole lives...well most of them. It's heartbreaking when I think about how sad the expression is on most of my siblings' faces. I'm the youngest of 7. Parents basically good, decent people who never should've married each other-dad shouldn't have married at all, probably. Add to that the fact that they can live in the same household for one year without speaking, with small children yet to raise. Result: siblings grow up not knowing how to communicate when things go wrong, and end up not speaking to each other. We have several what I think of as "teams" small clusters of sibs who speak to each other only. Parents seem to know nothing in the way of nurturing or creating family memories of happy times together. Psychologist once said we raised ourselves emotionally. Tis a small miracle that none of us have a crimianl record or history of alchohol or drug abuse. Individually, all of my siblings I think are very good, decent people and it's so sad to think of what we have lost out on by years of turmoil. It doesn't take a pscyh degree to see that it is the direct result of lack of love in the home. Neither of my parents were stupid....both professionals (nurse/lawyer) but I can honestly say I think they had no idea how to raise happy children. There idea of good parenting must've been providing food and shelter, and nothing else.

    I've struggled a lot over the years to emerge from the hole but I can honestly say I did and I'm proud of how I "raised myself emotionally"...like they say, what doesn't kill you makes you stronger. I have a strong marriage and 2 beautiful children...so not much looking back. The boys in my family are by far the more rational...I'm speaking to all but one of my sibs now. I love my brothers dearly, especially!

    This is somewhat therapeutic--just knowing I'm not alone!

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  29. OMG - I am getting a headache just reading this. I thought parts of my family were crazy, but I guess not compared to the batty antics of your readers!

    I gotta think about this one some more and get back to you.

    JO

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  30. Boy I don't normally read thru comments, but I was sure these would be good. I think there is something with big families. We have feuds in ours but nothing exciting (thank goodness) ours is really small and boring. I tell you though you all could write one big book, its is sad some of the stuff but when you are talking about people being pulled out of caskets for a better look, good lord it made me laugh, I'm sure not funny at the time. Thank you all it did make me feel much more normal and I will try not to hole grudges and be petty (most of the time)

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  31. Thank you Jen.

    I need this: Perspective.

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  32. My aunt (my father's sister) lived with her boyfriend for 7 years before they got married. During that 7 years, he was the Coolest Uncle Ever to me and my brother. Once they got married, it all changed.

    My aunt had trouble getting pregnant, but she finally did. Around 8 months into the pregnancy, my uncle beat her until she miscarried.

    A couple years later, my aunt and uncle were out at a bar and some random guy asked my aunt if she knew what time it was. She was wearing a watch, and told the guy what time it was. No big deal, right? Except my uncle got jealous that she was talking to some other guy, even over something that innocent/trivial.

    He took her home and beat and raped her for hours. When he finally passed out drunk, she crawled half a mile to the nearest neighbor's house with several broken bones to call the police.

    He was arrested and spent several years in jail, and while he was incarcerated, she divorced him.

    After he got out of jail, he moved in with a new girlfriend and her young kids. To get money to support his cocaine habit, he robbed the convenience store I was working in at the time, using one of my cousins as an accomplice.

    Six months later, New Girlfriend was dead. He beat her to death after some guy asked her a question at a festival they went to (sound familiar?) and then claimed that her death was from a motorcycle accident, leaving her two small kids orphans.

    He's now back in jail and hopefully will stay there this time.

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  33. I'm going a little more light hearted.....It involves control issues on the part of my inlaws. They have continually alienated me and my family, hounding my dad at our wedding to find out how much money he was giving wtf$#! as we were in our 30's and paying for it ourselves, Escorting my mum out the door and thanking her for helping us move and insinuating they financed our house (they did not) and then the decorating.....oh the decorating...

    My mil love to do needlepoint and quilting and croqueting. LOVES it and the first time I was in DH apartment I questioned his manhood due to the 10 needlepoint pictures: ukranian kids, bread rolls and wheat, pink and blue boy etc......I have 10 blankets currently in our house and no room to store them.

    BUT to top it off she informed me while we were dating that she was still working the last supper of christ. In a 5 foot long form and that we were never to sell it. WTF? Sigh. So I informed her that while I am spiritual I am not religious and that if she gave me the dimensions I would put it in a lovely acid free box to "preserve" it. I then as nicely as I could let her know that I felt "artwork" was personal and that a person should be free to decorate their own home as they see fit.

    Fast forward to today. She has finished the last supper and 5 other pictures and is working on a quilt "to decorate my sons room when he is older". I just ignore her as who could take the time? Life is too short.

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  34. cowbell? i'll throw in a needlepoint picture (hey it's not being sold! lol)

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  35. Jen, all I can say is that your story of your family sounded very similar to what my sister had to deal with her in-laws. Except, the one taking advantage of the situation as "Mary" is, it was the daughter of the ones dying. Grandma and Grandpa had to deal with their daughter taking advantage of their finances, their health, their house while they became more and more dependant on her "care". I heard some pretty bad horror stories of neglect which my sis and her DH had no recourse. It was a tough situation. Both Gma and Gpa are gone now. I don't know where the the freeloader is now.
    I have empathy for you in this situation. I wish you strength and positive outcome from all that you're dealing with.

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  36. Oh, dear...

    Ah, my family is a piece of work. My dad hasn't spoken to his mother in almost twenty years due to some poor decisions on her part. I haven't spoken to her for 7 or so because she's a bitter, terrible person who treated me horribly the last time I saw her. My parents love my brother more than me and make no secret of it (the boy can do no wrong...). They have firmly placed me in the free-spirit/solid-underachiever/wanna-be-creative/chronically-unemployable role, whereas brother has been placed in the smart/engineering-student/driven/talented/high-achieving/money-maker/sun-shines-out-of-his-a&& role. I'm the screw up and they won't let me forget it, even if it has been years since I've exhibited any sort of possibly "screw-up" type action.

    Ah. Whatever... I have used all of this to learn that we can't rely on other people to make us happy- our happiness is OUR responsibility, not anyone else's.

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  37. I will preface my stories with the fact that for the most part, I am fortunate with my family and we are very loving and get along... however, of course there are some stories in there too...

    My mother is the only girl in a family of 7. She has 4 older brothers and 2 younger brothers. We've lived with my maternal grandparents since I was 2-years-old (bought a house together at that time). Since then, my grandfather has passed away, but grandma still lives with us as usual.

    My uncle's wives are ridiculous. They have always made a big fuss over my mom, acting like she's so controlling, and being really bitchy about our family unit's closeness with my grandmother. Yes, my brothers and I were definitely more spoiled than my 11 cousins were by my grandparents growing up... but HELLO! Some of my uncles & aunts live IN TOWN and we'd never see them! They would barely visit there mom, or bring their kids to see their grandparents, so OF COURSE we were closer to our grandparents!

    There had been a few times growing up, where my uncles and aunts (1 couple in particular) actually treated ME poorly (refused to say hello to me at our family cottage, for example) because of my closeness to my grandma.

    Which I think is extra ridiculous. I'm just the grandchild/neice... I shouldn't be a part of THEIR sibling-rivalries!

    AND... I really do take care of my grandma more so than a lot of her kids do! And I did A LOT and was VERY CLOSE to my grandfather, especially when he was sick. They're like a second set of parents to me!

    Anyway, one of the classic stories of the greed of my mom's SIL's comes from quite a few years back. A bunch of them were up at our family cottage together (sans my parents and grandparents). And a couple of my aunts were going on and on about how my mother will get everything left to her in my grandparent's wills, etc etc because of how close she is to them (these are daughter-in-laws, remember, not even SISTERS saying this... but married in!).

    A) My grandparents were not and are not even wealthy folk, just your average middle-class!

    B) This conversation took place well before my grandparents were even hitting "Needing To Divide The Will" age.

    The best part of it? My mom's youngest brother, and the one who has always been closest to us and her was still a teenager at the time, and he said right to my aunts faces:

    "You were all pretty stupid right now. Because you've just had this conversation right in front of me, and I will go tell my mother."

    And he went ahead and revealed their snippy attitudes and greed to my grandparents.

    Most of the time, as I said, we get along well... we're fairly loving, and I really do love my uncles and aunts... but every now and then (especially with a particular couple of them)... they can really be selfish jerks about my mother and her relationship with their mother.

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  38. Jen, you're giving Jerry Springer a run for his money with this post & comments!!

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  39. One of many cuzzins'4/1/09, 8:27 PM

    Too many eyes on this blog for me to reveal the skeletons that darken my doorstep!!

    But, I'd love to have a vote for the prestigious "COWBELL AWARD". Some really loony people walking this earth....and ALOT of them!!

    Stripping dear ol'Dad of his deathbed pj's??? ....Now that is cold...and one of the funniest stories I've ever heard!!!

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  40. After losing our 2 year old daughter to a window shade cord suddenly and months of living at the "scene of the accident" as I like to describe it, we decided to try and sell our house in this bad economy. It sold in two days! We had to be out in one month. Still grieving our daughter we (well mostly me and a friend of mine because my husband was out of town working) packed up the entire house. No help from my parents except for them to tell us we could stay with them while we shopped for a new home. The night my friend and I unloaded into my parents garage the final load of stuff, I suffering from severe over working and emotional and physical exhaustion, I sit down for the first time in what seemed like days, on my parents couch. I was sitting there thinking, "Whew!!!"

    My dad walks into the living room and says, "Hey guess what? We just sold our house, we have to be out in 30 days...boy am I glad you are here to help us pack and move!"

    SERIOUSLY????

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  41. ~Cindy! :D4/1/09, 9:58 PM

    So now that everybody said all that, I think it's time for JEN to air all! :D

    I give 2nd place to the brother marrying his sister, and first place to rippin the corpse outa the coffin! Can ya beat that, Jen? :D

    ~Cindy! :)
    ..

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  42. I could definitly win an award for Crazy in my family (notice the capitol "C", yeah, we put that there). So here's just one:
    When moving to Texas from California, uppon arrival we discovered that our apartment was NOT wheelchair accessible. We had to find a hotel, it was very late at night, we were tired from driving for days. We called husby's parents in Arkansas to share our staggering disappointment and they offered to put us up until we could get it straightened out but told us to stay put for the night and see what the manager said in the morning. Next, called my mom to tell her the same thing. My mother was so upset and said that this was all a grand scheme orchastrated by husby's parents and grandparents in Arkansas to get us to come stay with them!!!! WTF?!?! She believed this whole hartedly for months and possibly years. Talk about crazy and totally out of left field there!

    Here's one more, just because I want that cow bell:

    My mom is convinced that she was once part of a secret government "experiment" regarding ESP. Yeah, she thinks she might have been psychic and secret agents were sent to ask her questions while posing as home loan applicants when she worked for a mortgage company.

    Oh,yeah, one more...one year she was staking a train to meet her husband in San Francisco from Los Angeles because he had been working there temporarily. The day before she left she called me, my sister, and all her friends and told them she thought he was planning on killing her there. She said he was acting weird on the phone so of course she naturally thought he was going to kill her (again, WTF?) It turns out he was renting an apartment temporarily instead of a motel room. Surprise!

    Ohhh, there are so many more stories! I'm a lucky girl :-|

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  43. Our family seems to be shrouded in mysteries I didn't even know existed. Last month, I found out the man I thought was my older brother (and grew up with) isn't actually biologically related to me at all, OMG. His mother, M, and my father had been dating, but she returned briefly home to her native country and became pregnant while there. Apparently, they made a pact to have this little boy think that A (my father) was his father. A and M later divorced for good, but the little boy was still kept in the dark about who his father was (why, I have no idea). A, my father, eventually married S, my mother, and had my sister and I. We were all raised with love as brothers and sisters (along with the two little boys from my mother's previous marriage). I had NO IDEA there was any murky waters about any of our parentage until talking with my mother in the car last week about how lucky it was my sister, brother, and I had been not to inherit our father's pointy chin, when she was like "you do not that he's not A's real son, right?" OMG.

    There's another mystery too. My uncle (A's younger brother) died of AIDs many years ago. I was four years old when I attended the funeral, and really remember nothing about him. I wasn't told anything about how he had died at the time, but found out last year he had been gay, which was painful at the time for my deeply religious grandmother. So many cover ups... it's really sad. I wish I had known about these things. I think that it can sometimes happen in religious families this way - it seems easier to not talk about things and sweep them under the carpet instead of talking about them and acknowledging what happened. Of course, that's a whole 'nother story because despite my grandmther's religious convictions, my father is a devout atheist. Now there's drama on a plate.

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  44. So ashamed to admit ANY relation to these people, but here we go... My (step)cousin was recently charged with child abuse. He broke the arm of his girlfriend's 4 yo son. My aunt & uncle have ACTUALLY hired an absolutely fabulous (& very expensive) attorney to defend him...really. Shouldn't people like this just be locked up & the key tossed? His sister recently got knocked up AT A NIGHTLCUB by some random guy (again, step cousin). My cousin, their step sister, was married for thirteen years (six children) then got pregnant as the result of an affair by a man she met at CHURCH. Two of my step aunts' husbands died "accidently" within one year of each other. Both couples were headed toward seriously messy divorces. No one has ever dared say a thing. My parents are..well, different...I could go on for days & days. My father is a conspiracy theorist & my mom likes to stir the pot. Any pot. My parents were driving me into a suicidal depression, so my husband joined the military. That's right. With the certainty of moving every two-four years to random locations across the globe, we are pretty much guaranteed they won't be packing up & moving next door. Finally, drum roll please...when my wonderful grandmother passed, (1)my step grandfather refused to have a closed casket. In order to hide my grandmother's sickly appearance he requested the funeral home put extra makeup on her (she looked like a working girl). He was laughing wildly as everyone came up to see her & said, "she can't run & hide from me now!". (2) At the same funeral, my crazy Aunt (married into the family) told my mom she was going to kick her a** so my other Aunt (born into the family) followed her outside while removing her jewelry so they could have a good, ole' fashion catfight. Needless to say, the police were called. We have not returned home for a funeral, wedding, baptism or any other significant event since.

    Feelin' any better, Jen!! Pop open a bottle of wine & have a drink for me :).

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  45. Oh oh pick me!
    After my father in law man handled my mother in law at my house on my husbands birthday, we had to call the police. He took off before the police showed up, but a few hours later he picked her up the corner (like a criminal) and back to TX they went.

    A week later we got a hone call telling us about it being our fault that his dad lost his temper. It was our fault because we don't allow him to be himself at our house -meaning we don't like him to swear in front of our kids. Not to mention the horror of not letting him drink soda in our living room. Who cares about the drink certainly being spilled by six little hands (on my floor and couch), or the fact that he has hepatitis B and the disease can be transferred to our children through sharing drinks!

    But yes, it was all our fault he man handled her. I think it is a birthday my husband will never forget.

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  46. I got married in May '06. Not even a year after that, Feb '07, my mom kicked my dad out (they had been married for almost 26 years), just days after valentines day.

    A few weeks later, I talk to her about needing some space, and ask her to please give us a year to process this before she starts dating again. I knew she wanted to find someone else, but I hoped she would respect us that much.

    Their divorce finalizes at the end of april that year. My little brother graduated from high school a couple weeks later. Not even a week after his graduation, she leaves to go on "vacation" with her "friend" about whom she assured us "there was nothing going on."

    She got re-married at the end of June 07, to her "friend." She finally came back to visit us a few weeks later, so we could meet our stepfather. My little brother (who needed a lot of parenting still), was left to live all alone in the middle of nowhere where we grew up.

    So, in just over 4 months, I went from having parents that had lived together for 25 years, to a new step family states away. I still haven't met my step-brother. While all this was going on, I was having my first wedding anniversary, buying our first house, being almost fired from a job, and got rear-ended by a kid with no insurance. But that was all of no consequence to anyone else. And she wonders why I'm still emotionally distant!

    Whew! That feels better

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  47. I forgot my father-in-law (I"m the one with the divorce and new step family in 4 months).

    When my hubby and I were dating (we dated through college and a little before) my FIL determined that I was a bad girl, and he thought I'd been sexually abused as a kid (That never happened to me.) and that I was bad for his son (I'm a good kid who grew up in church, singing in choir, and volunteering at camp, all that jazz, I never smoke, drank, did drugs, or anything really, i am the quintessential goody-two shoes).

    But I wasn't good enough for his kid, so he determined, without asking anyone else to make sure I was really who I said I was. He essentially "felt me up" and violated me emotionally to ensure that I wasn't attracted to him...yeah, he was that insane.

    I was mortified and totally emotionally torn apart, because here I was in love with his son, going to marry him once college was done, and here my future FIL was treating me extremely inappropriately. I finally came clean to my boyfriend, and he seriously considered hitting his dad.

    A few days later my FIL called a "family meeting" to discuss the issue. My MIL learned what was going on at the meeting, she had no idea. My BIL and SIL still don't know what happened.

    We got married awhile later. The family has never discussed that situation again. My hubby and I still do sometimes, it's a pretty nasty experience.

    So between all 4 parents, my hubby and I can trust my dad, and his mom with our future kids. And my dad is afraid of little kids. It'll be quite an experience...

    Whew! That feels even better!

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  48. At age 2 I decided I didn't like my father (feeling was mutual), so I went to live with my grandfather. I found him dead, was locked in a cupboard by my uncle while they dealt with it and returned to my parents at the age of 7. I was molested by my brother at 7 for over a year.
    On my 9th birthday I poured boiling water over my face and body to stop him. It worked.
    My father beat my mother and us until at least I left home. I left three weeks before my 18th birthday, 2 days before my final Year 12 exam. I had a broken arm, a broken nose and 3 broken ribs.
    On my 18th birthday I left town and lived in my car (I had been working/planning to leave since I was 8) until Uni started. I went to Uni but suffered malnutrition and fainted a lot due to not eating anything (no money does that).
    When I met my future husband, we were sharing money/car by 4 weeks. Life improved dramatically. We moved in after 9 months.
    My parents found out (I still spoke to them on birthdays for some reason) and placed a full page ad in their local newspaper to say I was dead. Obviously disowned.

    My boyfriend (now husband) wrote them a note telling them they were hypocrites due to what my brother had done. My father didn't know (don't worry when my Mum found out when I was 13 he was forced to apologise). He forgave him - the christian way.
    We invited them to our wedding 2 years later, they came. They paid for a toaster. The speeches were great as we had just finished Uni and everyone commented on what great workers we were (we shared a full time job at a pub for last 2 1/2 years) and how amazing that we had acheived so much alone.

    We moved to another state (we had been only 3 hours away - not far enough). My mother came to visit to forgive and forget 4 years later, I found out I was pregnant when my Mum was there. After having our first child we went for a visit to Victoria to see all relatives, I went back to that town for the first time in 10 years.

    On return to NSW I had a phone call from my father offering an apology. I accepted. He had a mental breakdown the next day. Diagnosed with delusions, demensia and depression. He still doesn't remember why I hate him. A few months later I took my baby and went down for suicide watch (my Mum worked full time) for 2 weeks. The deal was, if I found him dead I would leave him for two hours just to make sure (my sister and I had agreed on this). He confessed to having molested the foster children we had while I was growing up (only the boys, never his own children - seemed to be the excuse). He confessed to police and was given a good behaviour bond because he was "suffering enough".
    My Mum has had pancreatic and liver cancer for 2 1/2 years. She gave up full time work in January while he hasn't worked for 25 years (he plays the piano - apparently that is art). She is waiting for us to come for easter so she can die.

    My father and my brother are both baptist ministers. My brother dismissed my father from playing the piano last year because he molested children. I emailed him to tell him glass houses shouldn't throw stones. He informed me that he was looking after his spiritual life. I emailed his wife and told her what he had done as a 15 year old and to make sure his girls were safe (I actually thought she knew already - our deal was he would tell every girlfriend for 20 years - which explains why he didn't marry for 21 years).

    I live in another country now, my family is my husband and 3 kids - my kids understand that I don't like the men in my family, but they don't know why. It's hard to respect your mother with all that as well - but I do at least love her. If my mother dies first I will not be attending my fathers funeral. He is already dead as far as I am concerned.
    My girls are 10 and 6, my son is 7 They are unscared emotionally and as long as they have their father and I around they will remain so. It is my mission and I can do anything.

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  49. ohhh - I think you know all my crazy stories. Its the reason I live a gajillion miles away - it keeps me sane. I refuse to get sucked in to the drama. . . and in order to do that I limit all discussion to weather, the kids and shopping.

    The apex of my parents nuttiness was their behavior after the birth of my triplets. My parents - supposedly here to help my husband and I - with the delivery of my triplets over the Xmas holiday and our 2 year old - were . . .there are no words . . .

    To sum it up - 1 week after delivering my triplets, I was in an ambulance at the ER being diagnosed with a potentially fatal and rare autoimmune disease. I was septic with infection, all my internal organs were enlarged, my platlets were so low that I was bleeding in to my lungs, and the doctors were hoping that I wouldn't develop a brain bleed as is typical with this disease and stroke out. Meanwhile - my husband was left at home with my 2 year old and newborn triplets. The hospital I was in was in walking distance to my house. I was admitted the day before Xmas and there until after the new year.

    Did my mother visit me in the hospital? Did my father? Did they help my husband with the triplets? Did they help my husband with my 2 year old? Answer= no.

    Did they spend the whole time recreating the fights they had with my sister during her teen years? Did they insist on doing things like cook big holiday meals for my sisters Xmas? Did they go to the gym and work out? Answer = yes.

    If you ask them if any of this ever happened, they would be shocked and wonder why you were making all this up??

    Get the picture . . . . .

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  50. I haven't read any posts yet but the craziest family thing that rings in my mind is my Dad and my aunt getting into a fight about buttering toast.

    Dad's theory was you butter the toast and but the two buttered sides together to keep them warm and share the butter. My Aunt's theory was the opposite a HUGE fight erupted at Easter brunch one year over the issue. They barely spoke to each other again - over toast!

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  51. Oh God who knew there were so many crazy families out there. I can't read anymore, got through about 10, because in my current mental state I can't take anymore.

    I'm so sorry for all of you who have suffered through these horrors. Jen hope your family horror doesn't begin to match some of these

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  52. WELL!

    I have this cousin that writes this blog. She has a set of triplets and then one adorable little guy.

    Anyway, she is always giving stuff away on this blog (that shall remain nameless) She is going to be in a marathon with her husband and my sister.......that's not all!

    AND

    OH! UUUUUUUU Whoops!

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  53. last year the man, neighbor, that had molested me, i had told my mom about it, she told me "it never happened". he also molested my sister, my cousins, and many other young girls for years, was convicted and is now a registered sex offender. when it came out in the paper, my mom sent him a card, "because he had suffered enough". sad........

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  54. I married INTO crazy.

    Let's see... my uncle-in-law is in his late 50s and still lives in his father's house rent free - get this - WITH his mail order bride from Korea and her prostitute sister's bastard son. Figure it out.

    Not to be left out, my BIL lives in his grandparent's basement, and he is about to turn 40. He's been living there, rent free, since the age of 19. He "inherited" the house when his (and my DH's) grandparents passed away. My MIL had had the will changed so that her poor poor son wouldn't be out on the street. We could have contested it.

    MIL is a drunk. She has Hep C and has been in and out of the hospital for years. She has used DH's name and SS# on hospital/ambulance records, so we occasionally get collection calls on her behalf. She has also used my parents' names on CC applications. Oh yeah, and she told someone she wished our girls were dead, and she showed up late and drunk to our wedding.

    FIL left MIL 11 years ago for a much younger woman "J." When MIL went crazy on J, J left. FIL started dating C and dated her for 10 years. When J called one day and announced that she was divorced and single again, FIL ditched C and started seeing J. J has two kids who are the same age or younger than FIL's OWN GRANDKIDS. FIL has suddenly decided he doesn't want to spend time with us.

    BUT I have some drama in my own family.

    My uncle's wife has Munchhausens by Proxy. She once called my grandpa saying to "come quick" because her son wasn't breathing. When he got there, auntie asked to take a shower while her son lie blue on the floor. They're getting divorced now, and she has claimed that my uncle sexually abused the kids and she refuses to follow the court orders to allow him to have custody. The court psychologist just gave his report a week ago that my aunt-in-law is NUTS and the kids should be removed from her care ASAP.

    Are we having fun yet???

    On the other side of my family, I have a cousin who has major emotional outbursts and may someday become a serial killer (my apologies in advance). He had to be removed from regular classrooms, and his sister was sent to live in another state for her own safety.

    Another cousin married a multi-millionaire who was disowned for the wedding.

    Yet another cousin was raped 15 years ago and since then has imagined boyfriends and joined a cult.

    My uncle (through marriage) approached my aunt (through marriage) after my uncle - aunt's husband - died. He offered to leave his wife - my other aunt - and run away with her. She declined.

    And lastly...

    When my AWESOME great-grandma passed away four years ago, she had been living with my grandma for a year. She was in her NINETIES and had lived alone for decades. When my grandma went to clean her house one last time and sift through her belongings to grieve, she arrived to an empty house. Grandma's cousins - with word that the old lady kicked the bucket - took EVERYTHING, leaving only a few items of clothes.

    It's a miracle I'm so well-adjusted.

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  55. Got a good bat shit crazy story for you. My husband lost his mother in his early twenties, and his father quickly remarried a divorced old family friend (dad and mom were high school sweethearts, I think dad remarried quickly because he didn't know how to be alone and new wife was familiar ). So, the new wife should be institutionalized she is so crazy. They've been married almost 20 years, and live practically seperate lives. I could write a book, but a few examples of her insanity: They recently came to visit us to help us move, and she brought her own sheets, towels, rubber gloves and FOOD! She kept most of her food in her suitcase. We bought bananas on a trip to the store together and she took a few of them and hid them on a high shelf. When I found them and returned them to the bowl, she said "oh, I guess dad can have those now" like my family has some kind of dirty disease or something. I am a meticulous housekeeper (some would say a neat freak), but I guess not good enough for her. She and dad have seperate bedrooms and bathrooms at the house. She won't share a bathroom with him or mix their laundry because she says he has fungus. And the best - after hurricane Katrina (they live in the New Orleans suburbs)she refused to return home until dad had the house "disenfected" even though they had no water in the house or any damage at all. She made him rent her an apartment 75 miles away (that she still rents to this day and spends a few weeks each month in) IN CASE they have to evacuate again (I guess she has hotel phobia too). I asked her why she was still putting the financial burden on my retired FIL for the apartment when she could easily evacuate and stay with her daughter if need be, and she said "Dad's first wife owned half this house and left it to the kids when she died. If dad dies, the house belongs to the kids and I would have to leave immediately and I need to have somewhere to go." Like my husband or his sister would kick her out - she is nuts. Dad just booked a trip to visit us in July for my twins second birthday, and she won't be joining him because "staying at my house upsets her allergies and dry eyes." We have no pets, so not sure how my house is allergic, but glad dad is coming alone. There's my grievance for the week.

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  56. Wow what a great book this would be. Jen and one of the many cuzzins better keep thier MOUTH SHUT.......

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  57. my mom wrote my aunt and cousin asking to have a real relationship and not this fake thing they have been doing over the years. they responded by telling her she was dead in their eyes, twice. This after she battled cancer for 17 years. 2 years later she died and I didn't contact them per my mother's wishes. flash forward 4 years, I am talking with my aunt and she asks how my mother is. I tell her her sister has been dead for 4 years. Fun times... and that's just my side.

    Both my brother in law and father in law committed suicide by shooting themselves (FIL did it front of dozens of people on a busy 4 lane road).

    Our family is full of crazy and tragedy. We just keep plugging away!

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  58. See Jen - you are NOT alone! Everyone's family is dysfunctional!

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  59. To start off, my father is about to be married for the third time to a woman 18 years his junior. He has 5 kids as well as 2 "step" daughters, who are actually the result of a relationship that ended their marriage, but she still decided to give them his last name.

    His first wife is a total nut job, and is still hung up on him. She took every penny that they could get, and he paid child support and everything else that she took him to court for until his kids were 18.

    She starts fights with her 4 daughters, constantly refusing to speak to them "ever again" if they stay in contact with our father. Whenever she is in need of help with one of her many law suits, or wants to see her grandsons, she always reunites with them. My oldest sister finally took a stand and refuses contact with her after many MANY arguments.

    My father's only son (product of the crazy lady), is a total mommy's boy, and refuses to see our father unless he has to settle his $10,000 gambling debt. He is the spitting image of our father, personality and appearance wise. He is also 36 and is married to a 23 year old.

    My father is also involved in another conflict with my aunt, who accused him of having an affair with his wife-to-be sometime in between his full time job, caring for his 10 year old daughter (myself at the time), and taking care of his wife (my aunt's sister) who was dying from cancer.

    My dad and future stepmother started dating 2 years after my mom's passing. The reason for my father's delayed nuptials is due to the fact that he is still in love with my mother, and she was his real true love.

    My family is a whole big bag of crazy in every way!

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  60. I can't top some of the stories here (and am really glad about that!), but we do have our share of dysfunction in the family... most of it coming from my MIL. Luckily she lives in another country so we only see her about once a year or less, but when we do see her it's usually a pretty intense 2 weeks (either at our place or hers). She's actually friendly and fairly easy to get along with 95% of the time, but just occasionally gets so weird and turns on people for no good reason... I've suspected that she has a mild case of Borderline Personality Disorder. The worst was the last time we stayed with her and she was baking with my then 10 year old daughter. They were using a hand mixer to whip cream in a metal bowl that was in the metal kitchen sink at the time. That made me a bit paranoid about electrical safety, so I asked her to please move the bowl onto the counter away from the sink. Man, you would have thought I had called her an abusive woman trying to deliberately kill my child from the way she overreacted.... yelling at me, calling me names, yelling insults about my own mother (this was in front of all 3 of my kids, so she was insulting their other grandmother horribly in front of them), and finally threatening to slap me. In front of my kids.
    Luckily our visit was only scheduled to last 2 more days, so we all just cleared out for a day and then tried to avoid each other as much as possible. Since then she's come to visit us and we had a good time, but I do feel like I can't really ever let my guard down when she's around.

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  61. One week before our wedding, my husbands brother mailed a 3-page letter to me, telling me all the reasons why he disliked me and thought his brother should not be marrying me.
    BIL was a groomsman and notified me in this letter that he would not be standing up NOR attending our wedding.
    All this because we did not ask his 13-year old daughter to be a "bridesmaid".
    A few days later, we asked him to meet us at our church rectory to speak with us to our priest. My husband was distraught and wanted to resolve this situation. When we walked in, BIL looks an my husband and asks him "What is SHE doing here?".
    Meaning me.
    The priest (bless his heart) says "she's the bride. What are YOU doing here?".
    So BIL and my husband exchange words, and start shoving each other and BIL takes a swing at my husband.
    In the church rectory.
    Two days before our wedding.
    He did show up to our wedding and has a sour expression is every single picture.
    I since call them the "out-laws" instead of the "in-laws".

    Your Chi-town Friend

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  62. Oh my gosh, I immediately thought of you when I saw this on the side of my Facebook profile!!! It's a fan page for cowbell! No joke!:
    http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=520312080&ref=profile#/pages/Cowbell/36413251007?ref=nf

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  63. Uhm...I'm a follower, but I'm going to remain anonymous, because I can't even imagine what my family would do if they knew I told anyone this...

    So, I have this "cousin" and this "uncle" who were sick and twisted individuals. My siblings and I were not allowed around them "alone" when we were growing up. We never knew why... Anyway, I have many first cousins, and many of them are girls. So, anyway, to make a long and sad story short...my cousin and uncle continuously raped my cousin and told her if she told she'd be in trouble. And no one knew about it, until she told me, when we were teenagers, and I forced her to go to the police. they went to jail and upon leaving jail, my cousin passed away unexpectedly (the girl cousin) and who were the two pallbearers at her funeral??? My Uncle and Cousin. No one in my family did anything about it. No one, except me. I made a large and very vicious scene in our church and under God's watchful eye. And still the person they blamed was me. They still don't talk to me. But, my cousin, I know she was happy that I stuck up for her.

    So THEN, I'm all sad and wondering why my large family all hates me...and I find out from my other cousin that every one of my aunts, a few of my uncles, and every-single-one of my female cousins over the age of 9 has been molested by SOMEONE in the family. Minus my sib's and me, of course. AND NO ONE SAID A WORD...and NO ONE thought it was wrong to have to sit next to your uncle who earlier that morning rubbed your leg at a funeral. WTF?

    Yeah...I didn't pick my family, and I don't choose to know them now. As far as my kids are concerned, my mom had only two siblings, not ten...and we have 10 cousins, not sixty.

    So, I read most of these, and I think I win.

    And thank you for allowing me to "air my grievance..." because I've really only ever been 1) too embarrassed to be related to people like that to tell anyone, and 2) to scared to tell anyone else, besides my husband, for fear that someone would find out it was me. So thank you. And may B.R. Rest In Peace knowing I'll always stick up for her...and my other cousins who's dad's didn't teach them that touching was not OK.

    Ugh, I feel the need to drink something right now.

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  64. How is my family crazy, let me count the ways:

    1. Dad told me when I was a young child that I needed to "grow up" so I could take care of my sisters. (I was 7 at the time, and I did, they still call me mom.)
    2. Divorced from an ex Navy Seal who stabbed me while 7 months pregnant with son and wonders why the police won't let him get near him.
    3. Broken up from long time boyfriend who slept with best friend while best friend lived with us with her newborn after her boyfriend beat her up, and I was pregnant with his child...slept with her throughout the pregnancy, I found out the good old fashioned way...std's!
    4. Mom is an alcoholic. Really, I love her to death, but she is.
    5. Ex MIL tell's my daughter I'm a whore and any other name she can think of, during her alloted 24 hour visitation weekly. Its now a game to us, what name she'll come up with next.
    6. I have 74 FIRST cousins on my mother's side.
    7. Two of those cousins are "with" my other cousins, and have BABIES.
    8. Hubby's ex wife took us to the cleaners, hired a hitman, it failed, and she STILL isn't in jail.
    9. During custody dispute btwn hubby and his Ex, the judge declared that since I make over "100K" a year, that child support should be raised to reflect that. (seriously, I don't even make CLOSE TO THAT!!! but they "said I did, because of all the things [house, car, airplane, snowmachines, ATV's all paid off] I have" Its called SAVING MONEY FOOLS!)
    10. 9 yr old step-daughter is in therapy after she told her mom she'd rather kill herself than be with our family. (but she NEVER needs therapy when she's here. ONLY when she's with her mom...and she also is the sweetest little girl here, LOVES her sister and brothers, and LOVES being here...and CRIES hysterically when she is "forced to go back")
    11. My uncle is married to my cousin.
    12. My sister, who is 18 is living off me and my husband, we pay tuition, books, rent, car...etc while she's in college, but my parents claim her on their taxes. She calls me every day, and calls my parents on their birthdays.
    13. I didn't have running water until I was 12.
    14. I didn't have a TV until I was 8, and it was black and white...but SO COOL!
    15. (I'm 31 years old)
    16. My kids get weird diseases...like flesh eating virus, and stuff!
    17. My grandfather was legally blind and deaf, but he took his dog sled out hunting almost every day, and came back with food for us to eat.
    18. I live in "America!" but I HATE beef (gag) but we eat Caribou, Fish, Rabbit, Porcupine, Walrus, Beluga, Bowhead, Seal, Squirrel, Ducks, Geese, etc...and mostly with just potatoes or rice!
    19. In order for my mom to babysit, I have to pay her in alcohol. My aunts and uncles? weed is the payment of choice.
    20. I'm married to the COOLEST, BEST guy who is an AWESOME hunter, and an even better dad to our crazy bunch, and we're crazy in love... hehe...

    I have more, but I figured I'd stop at 20...

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