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I'm an adult yet feel like a nobody in my family

Community Member
Long story short- My sister is 3 years older than me and has always been a super star. Grade A student, travelled the world, living the high life. Is on her 2nd marriage (to an engineer on big money) with step-kids, lives in the UK and that's all good. Good on her! I on the other hand left school early, liked to party and enjoyed myself. Had a stable job for years, live comfortably. Married my partner and we have 2 kids, a cute cottage on land, I am a stay at home mum and study full time, my husband is the sole bread winner. We are all good, until we have to see my family. We moved interstate 13 years ago to escape them. We saw them this week and they constantly belittled and berated us. Made us feel like sub standard humans. Photos of my sister and her husband and step kids every where. A few photos of my 2 daughters and photos of me and my husband propped up behind the leg of a desk in the office. Every time we see them they carry on about this person and that who have this house and that car and earn that much money. They then say oh well, not everyone can have the good life. Had enough of being belittled and want to stop all communication with them. Don't want their money and I don't want to feel small and insignificant. I am confident and happy when I don't see them. Only problem is my kids miss out on grandparents. We have people we know here that treat our kids like their own grandchildren and to be honest act more like real grandparents than my parents. My parents throw money at them and that's about it. The pretend grandparents spend time with them, talk to them and play with them . Am I wrong in wanting to cut off my family because they make me feel so bad about myself at the expense of my kids? I know blood is thicker than water, but sometimes family are crappy. A side note- I am more than half way through a uni degree, and not once have my parents asked about it. They are more interested in my sister and her husbands new engineering job- of course the money he will be earning and the things they can do and buy with that. My parents friends had no idea I was even studying (I started in 2016 and finish next year) yet they know about my sister and her husband and all their travel and their financial highs. Hard to feel like a worthy being living in my sisters shadow for 42 years! I am only truly happy when I am not in contact with any of them. I want to cut them all off yet I am also scared of doing it- Why? I really don't know!
2 Replies 2

Community Member
For what it's worth I think you sound like a great girl! I don't think there's anything wrong with putting distance between yourself and your folks but don't close the door altogether. It actually makes things more complicated down the line. We all have people that bring us down but when it's close family, estrangement is the last resort. Steel yourself before you call them. Minimise the visits and don't feel guilty about your kids - they're getting plenty of love. Remember too that no one's life is as rosey as the photos. Your sister's husband could be a womanising slob for all you know.

Community Member

Thanks for the reply grt123. I will take that advice and limit the contact. It's pretty easy to do that really given we can txt and email. Being a full time uni student has its advantages in that I am flat out keeping up with the workload and looking after my family and property, so if I drop off with contact I can always fall back on that if they start to question why I'm not calling. I'll have to take a deep breath before calling, that's for sure! After the visit this week I decided I don't want to visit them at their place again, so the only option is when they travel in the caravan and stop in here for a few days here and there. I need to be stronger, and stop feeding into their BS. 🙂

Thanks again, 🙂