The third daughter of three, all three years apart. The last-ditch failed effort at producing an heir, the last year of the Baby Boomers, 1964.
They were already a close-knit dysfunctional suburban family before I entered the scene. Vulnerable, always either 3 or 6 years behind in verbal and conceptual abilities, my siblings loved me only as their scapegoat. Our parents never investigated facts. Dad was the breadwinner with all household responsibility, including discipline, delegated to my mother. Mother always trusted allegations of my older siblings. Even when I became articulate, my words were dismissed: from mother’s behavior it could be inferred that the only acceptable response to unhappiness of my elder sisters was a manhandling, belting, or other punishment exercised on me.
My sisters have happy childhood memories. I do not.
PTSD means past trauma reinjects itself into present life, compounding trauma. When I cannot concentrate for an uncontrollable onslaught of terrified flashback in the backscape of my mind, I retire to the wabbitsnkeets haven, missing work.
I knew from the time I was 20, I needed entirely to cut contact with the abusive, scapegoating, libelous siblings. For I shall in the end heal. And that healing is slowed or compromised each time– inappropriately– they reinject themselves into my life.
We had some small degree of accumulated capital. If I kept my mouth shut about the trauma-filled and abusive scapegoating, I received an education paid for. I opted for loan-free education. I don’t regret it. But extension of the false image of happy family with secret family discounting of my trauma and pain rankled increasingly.
Dad died; Mom died. You would have thought immediately I would break free. But no, two other factors played out: Stockholm Syndrome and a youngest sister’s insatiable desire for approval from elder sisters.
Even now, when they have admittedly colluded against me, it is hard to just STOP seeking their approval. Stockholm Syndrome. Time after time– God only knows why!– I sent sweet pet pictures and videos, to share with them simple kindness and invite them to authentic relationship. Why, oh why, did I persist, instead of stopping and obviating pain from future rebuff?!
The Baby Boomer sibs of ’58 and ’61 keep trying to commit the legal equivalent of axe murder through the trust. Why should it be so difficult to reach accommodation. They were a dysfunctional family of four who resented a third non-male child.
I am tired of the abuse and insincerity, of the flashbacks they inconveniently let loose in my life. Should it be so hard to agree to move on?