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Time to permanently distance myself from my last toxic relative? [Trigger Warning: abuse]

Community Member

My brother and I are in our 50s. We had an extremely abusive childhood, ending in our father's suicide when we were young teens. I copped most of the abuse from our mother. He was the GC.

I was old enough to leave home but being 17, she needed me to rort her pension. I was always a convenience to her. By the time I was 40, I'd had enough of her N, self-serving abuse to last a lifetime. 13 years ago the abuse reverted back to physical. And sexual, again. I walked away, lest I hurt her in turn. DB stuck around because he has kids.

In the last two years, DB has tried to kill us both while driving on two occasions. He won't allow his children to thank me for sending them gifts so I haven't gifted them for years. I'm old school and believe in thanks but he said I just want to furnish my ego. I've had breast cancer, twice, in the last 12 months but because I didn't need chemo (just rads) he thinks I am OK.

He has always been ashamed of me and never introduces me to friends he runs into. I do that! People are amazed that I am his sister but he is embarrassed. This has gone on since he married up to middle-class and his now ex-wife poisoned him against me. His new wife hates me but it doesn't stop my brother from telling me about their amazing sex life. He also perved on me in the shower, telling me how I am not as pretty as people say I am.

I've had no well-wishes from his family at all. They don't know what I have been through, nor do they know that I will have a double mastectomy before the end of the year. I don't want him around by then. I am literally sick of his constant passive-aggressive criticism of my life and of me. He is feeding off my cancer like it is a novelty.

He fled from our mother a year ago and a few weeks later, while we were driving in the city, he tore me to pieces on the way to my radiotherapy appt, telling me I am just like her and to never ever compare him to her. I turned up at the clinic in tears. The problem is, he is just as N and hateful as she is.

Now I find out he received a cut of our grandfather's inheritance 12 years ago and he insists I get my cut. He never told me of this at the time.

I'm too sick to confront our mother about the money, which I sorely need. It is how she wants it, anyway. I'm quietly doing my own research in order to get it without having to see her at all.

To me, this is DV and I need to get away regardless of the nature of our relationship. Rant over. Opinions?

5 Replies 5

white knight
Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi, welcome

So, you've had a life full of complex relationships and family abuse. You feel you've "come of age" and realized permanent separation from family members is best for you mentally as you move forward towards some difficult physical challenges ahead.

Abuse is a difficult thing to endure especially when family is where you are getting it from. Blood relatives are our backbone and when the reality hits that they fail dismally to that task it is time to move on and salvage what you can from the odd relative here and there. The links I'll provide you can just read the first post ok.

Disowning family members - https://www.beyondblue.org.au/get-support/online-forums/relationship-and-family-issues/disowning-family-members

Only you can determine if you need to move on from these people. No one else. The important thing is any guilt you might feel after the fact, even many years ahead. Many of us that are vulnerable haven't developed an appropriate and normal defense mechanism to protect us from the evils of the world including toxic relatives. Perhaps these two threads can highlight what you need to do?



We have members here that have Narcissistic personality disorder and Borderline Personality Disorder and the symptoms of both can be devastating on family members. Such sufferers if they get treatment can hold their up high but those not getting help well...you cannot do much about it but separate yourself.


Finally, I think you are on your way. To be positive for your future life while undergoing some pretty traumatic times is essential. you don't need destructive behavior around.

I'll share with you an amazing story of when I transitioned from a negative to a positive person some 36 years ago. Worth a read.



A fair bit of reading there and that is the very best way I can help you. Be proud, you have finally drawn a line in the sand. You are simply amazing.

Repost anytime.


A lot of reading indeed. I had my brother's silent treatment sussed a couple of years ago. It does hurt, physically as well as the rest. I dish it back these days and the estrangement goes on longer each time.

The secrecy. He withholds so much, such as the Will details which I didn't hear of for over a decade. It makes me wonder what else he is hiding from me.

He is obsessed with war and talks about it ad nauseum. It makes my eardrums bleed and I want to tell him to shut up. It's the same shit over and over, only the contexts change. I feel sick to the stomach when he starts on it. Inwardly, I roll my eyes. 'Here I go again.'

His obsessions with cheerleaders and schoolgirls makes me sick. He talks about wanting to make porn. He once told me I had plenty of erotic capital left and that I should pull middle-aged tricks for extra income. If his GF knew what he said about her body............... if her 'well' dried up, he would have nobody at all. Some of his old friends are a bit dismayed by him these days.

I feel like crap after I see him but at the same time, I feel grateful that he has visited. GRATEFUL.

Right now, I am GRATEFUL to me for avoiding contact with him for two months. I am grateful to me for not allowing him to help me write a letter to our Birthing Unit (BU), asking for my money. Still, I don't know if he is telling the truth so I told him that I do not want her filthy lucre. (I can take it or leave it.)

I have enough time on my hands to find out the truth of that for myself before I take action. He doesn't get to see our BU squirm if I find out she has withheld what is rightfully mine and gets into trouble for it.

Truthfully, I can envision him reconciling with her when he runs out of money because he is on the dole which is a crushing embarrassment to him, seeing as he is a jobless academic. Oh wait, the BU told him that his degree was a waste.

I know who will be the happier of the two of us, in time.

It is hard for me to figure at what point you are at with this toxicity.

Its been 2 months, are you ever hoing to see him again? Or do you secretly hope its ongoing. I dont blame you if its the latter because when we have lots of baggage, to move on with no further contact is not easy.


I've been ignoring his calls and texts for the last two months and have blocked his email address. He called today and I didn't pick up. The message he left was 'just seeing how you going.' I don't want him to know because I am going so well without him around. He doesn't actually care about how I am going. He just wants to sell pot to me.

Yes, a little part of me is sad about this but at this juncture in my life, I need to be surrounded by nurturing and positive people or nobody at all. I'm at my best in my own company. I like myself a lot.

This is a person who causes me emotional pain that hurts in my chest as I cry in front of him while he laughs at me. That is sadism.

'Sorry' is not a word in his vocabulary. He has never apologised for any deliberate hurts and slights (he knows my buttons). I've seen his smug smile when he passive-aggressively insults and criticises me by talking about other people who do the things I do or don't do.

For example, I care not about our cultural history or our native language. I've told him to tone it down and that it doesn't interest me so he ramps it up.

The last time he was at my home he was standing behind me at my desk, showing me how to do something on my computer. He pretended he was going to become physical and yelled "You will learn!!!" in our late father's accent. I'm so used to this crap that I ignored it.

I am so angry with myself for letting this abuse go as far as it has. I have a hunch that he will rape me one of these days. It's what the men in our old country did to women in the wars. I don't want him around anymore.

After being NC from our mother for 13 years, this will be a cakewalk.




Well it seems you have it all under control now.

Just be wary that some topics can be triggers for other members as they rea your fears in particular your last paragraph.

But you have done well and I agree your brother isn't an advantage to your life. Maybe in many years when he grows up more and realizes his childish behavior.