Excluded from Family Roadtrips

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B.A. Mirror

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Excluded from Family Roadtrips
« on: September 04, 2016, 09:29:49 AM »
A couple months ago I had a dream where I woke up as a child to find my enabling parents and uBPD sister packing to go on a roadtrip that I had no prior knowledge of and wasn't invited on. I spent almost a week racking my brain to figure out the symbolism before it hit me: it was more like a memory!

My uBPD sis used to pressure my boundary-disabled mom (through lies and tantrums) to take her on roadtrips with less than 12 hour's notice. My dad would usually go, too, because he was worried about their safety. So I'd wake up to an empty house and a note that my child brain translated to mean, "We went to have fun without you. You weren't invited because we don't enjoy your company. There's leftovers in the fridge. We'll be back tonight." I think I was about 7 or 8 when it started and it would happen a couple times each year until I moved out at 18.

The surge of these repressed memories has me reeling harder than I have since I was in intensive therapy to get through my intense reaction to attacking criticism. I now realize the marital problems I've been having this last year are actually from me getting triggered around this area (when my husband goes out with coworker after work and comes home late I get WAY more hurt than I should).

I'm dealing with such a mix of emotions: anger at my mom for her inability to set boundaries (though, I know she was raised that way by my NPD gma), grateful that my subconscious finally shone light on why I was having such a hard time, frustrated that my parents' difficulties caused so many difficulties in my marriage, and, of course, EXTREMELY hurt that I was left out both by being left behind and by not getting in-person notice. I'm working on giving myself a break for all the marital problems. I really hate the aftermath and wish I'd realized sooner, but being that the memories were repressed there's no other way it could have happened.

Did anyone else have similar experiences? Any recommendations for working through them? I'm seeing my T soon, but I always appreciate the perspective of other nons!
"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind." - Dr. Seuss

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Bloomie

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Re: Excluded from Family Roadtrips
« Reply #1 on: September 08, 2016, 12:57:53 PM »
Quote from: B.A. Mirror
I'm dealing with such a mix of emotions: anger at my mom for her inability to set boundaries (though, I know she was raised that way by my NPD gma), grateful that my subconscious finally shone light on why I was having such a hard time, frustrated that my parents' difficulties caused so many difficulties in my marriage, and, of course, EXTREMELY hurt that I was left out both by being left behind and by not getting in-person notice. I'm working on giving myself a break for all the marital problems. I really hate the aftermath and wish I'd realized sooner, but being that the memories were repressed there's no other way it could have happened.

It must be very difficult to have remembered this. I am astounded that you were left home alone and out of a 'family' trip at any age in this way, but especially at such a young age. How incredibly confusing for you and there are so many negative and hurtful messages in this I don't even know where to start. I am just heartbroken for you that this happened and grateful you were able to connect with this memory and can work thru the feelings it has brought up in you.

It makes perfect sense that you would find yourself triggered by even the appearance of being left, abandoned, that someone else is preferred company over you - even though you know that isn't the case with your H going out with a friend, it is understandable this would be something you needed to work through given your history and treatment by your parents.

I do have an experience that has some similarities in that I had the appearance of care giving - like you with the food left in the fridge and a note - but a complete lack of real nurturing and protective presence growing up. I grew up with neglect - emotional and physical, but on the surface everything looked picture perfect and I was too little to understand why I was so insecure and afraid of being left somewhere or forgotten.

It has helped me to find a pic of myself (there are very few) when I was about the age the worst neglect was taking place. I have kept that pic in a place where I can see it as I have worked through all of this kind of thing myself. Seeing how little and vulnerable and innocent I was has really helped validate the extent of damage that I have dealt with from the neglect and lack of nurturance.

This type of thing undermines a child in a powerful way. To overcome this as an adult takes determination and strength. I hope you can gather up that child in your mind into your own adult "arms" so to speak, that you once were and tell yourself everything you needed to know way back then. :hug:

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bopper

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Re: Excluded from Family Roadtrips
« Reply #2 on: September 08, 2016, 01:15:13 PM »
Or another way to frame it is that your Enabling parents sheltered you from having to be stuck in a car with your BP sister for hours on end with no way to escape.
Just because they are incapable of loving you, doesn't mean that you are unlovable.
Anything makes the false self appear real is supply.

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all4peace

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Re: Excluded from Family Roadtrips
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2016, 12:24:57 PM »
Or another way to frame it is that your Enabling parents sheltered you from having to be stuck in a car with your BP sister for hours on end with no way to escape.
I'd agree, except for the part where she was only 7-8 when it began :(

DH was left behind to take care of the family business while his parents and 3 sisters went on trips. This still completely enrages me. It happened before and after he reached his majority. He was probably a teenager when it started, so capable to being home alone, but I think it's really crappy to leave a family member out of a family trip.

We take family trips. They're a time to bond, reconnect, share experiences and make memories. To leave a single family member out of that is incredibly crappy.

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Muggins

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Re: Excluded from Family Roadtrips
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2016, 04:01:55 PM »
What did you mean "less than 12 hour's notice"?

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bopper

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Re: Excluded from Family Roadtrips
« Reply #5 on: September 09, 2016, 06:04:06 PM »
I assume that would mean that she would decide in the evening that they should do a road trip, and they leave the next day.
Just because they are incapable of loving you, doesn't mean that you are unlovable.
Anything makes the false self appear real is supply.

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rosalieaprile

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Re: Excluded from Family Roadtrips
« Reply #6 on: September 09, 2016, 06:13:35 PM »
Its amazing how some of these memories are suppressed until we're so much older. Until I read this thread I had completely forgotten that Nmom used to take YSIS to Florida when I was a teenager (we lived in NJ). Nmom would tell me it was because I didn't know 'how to act' and I was mean to YSis. I was f14 so she was 11. They went to Florida at least two or three times, and to this day the two of them still vacation together frequently.

You're not the only one OP and believe me I understand how painful that feeling of exclusion is.