Unequal treatment

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Unequal treatment
« on: September 16, 2018, 03:16:48 PM »
So my stepbrother recently broke his hand in a domestic dispute with his baby mama. My stepmother paid to fly him home, fix his hand and get dental surgery. He has been living with my n stepmom and n father for months now.

When my family and I decided to move closer to my n parents they only let us stay with them for a few days. My children were babies still, and they kicked us out before we were even done unpacking in our new home.

They never have us over, rarely spend time with us and never spend any money on us.  Itís hard for  me not to be jealous. My stepbrother is a drug addict and has made a complete mess of his life. He has s child he rarely sees. I am responsible, take care of my family and make good choices. He is given the royal treatment. I am given shit. They donít even invite us over for a bbq now and then. It feels so unfair.
It takes strength to be a good person.  That's why the biggest bullies are truly the weakest cowards.


Starboard Song

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Re: Unequal treatment
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2018, 03:36:52 PM »
This is a pattern I recognize.

My BIL is a great guy, but his life is not well put-together. His job is on-again, off-again -- not a career, or stable. His girlfriend is great, but he is 43 and never married. His parents treat him -- well, I can't say great: his lot is a hard one with them, just like for us, in many ways. But they do indulge and support him. When he was a child, my MIL always said she thought he took after her: was likely to become a depressed addict.

My wife got the degree, the husband (me, thank goodness), the job, the son, the house. She's got a stable, solid home and does so much the traditional "right way." She has not needed a penny from them since the day she graduated from college. And yet she is flatly the scapegoat in the family.

I have come to believe that maybe PDs often penalize strong, independent children, and somewhat reward ones they see as weaker or more dependent. My MIL suffers from severe separation anxiety, and was described by her own mother as "the neediest person I've ever known." I think it must be that some such needy people resent, or are stressed out by, the independence of their children. And appreciate a child's perpetual need, weakness, or subordinate position.

In any case, this seems to show up at this forum a good bit.

It's unfair. Of course it is. But in our case, because my BIL is truly such a good guy, it is easy to see that what is unfair is how we are treated: not the difference, and not his good treatment. He is not a partner in the unfairness or disparity at all.

You are doing well to process what's going on and describe it with clarity. In our case, the struggle is learning that it isn't our fault. I don't know how things could be different. And so I try to remember that I did not cause it, cannot control, or cure it.

Best of strength to you.
Radical Acceptance, by Brach   |   Self-Compassion, by Neff    |   Mindfulness, by Williams   |   The Book of Joy, by the Dalai Lama and Tutu
Healing From Family Rifts, by Sichel   |  Stop Walking on Egshells, by Mason    |    Emotional Blackmail, by Susan Forward



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Re: Unequal treatment
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2018, 05:49:12 PM »
When I came home from my high school graduation my mother told me I need to move out as her obligation to me was over. My youngest sister (36) will lives in my fatherís house.

He drove her to work every morning (now he lets her use his car). When I last visited I got a taxi to the train station for the first train in the morning to get my flight. He went on and on the whole trip about the taxi Iíd booked he kept a saying ďOh Getting is too posh for the busĒ.

This has been the theme of  my life with my family.

I battled with jealousy too, especially as I work hard and am more successful than my siblings who have chosen different paths. I came to see though that it was the fact Iíd bettered my situation that caused this treatment. As a kid I always did well in school while both my siblings were held back, so itís always been this way.

Iím sorry that you are dealing with this, but it is good that you recognize it and can start to see it for what it is.



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Re: Unequal treatment
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2018, 09:32:16 PM »
I wonder if it's the weaker child or if staying the gc makes you the weaker child. Sg children often bring themselves up or have fended for themselves since late teens. Gc get "kept" often and are also I find, told they cant manage. Exbpdh was an only so gc to ubpdmil and regularly told how useless he was by enfil so he wouldn't get a swollen head. This awesome combination produced a bpd personality that was enmeshed with both parents and emotionally incestuous with his mother.
He tried independence but they continually interfered in our marriage which he allowed mostly and sometimes was very angry about. He for most of his life had no consequences because they were all made to disappear. The only ones I can think of are that I didn't back down from the divorce and he has no relationship with his kids because of how he treated them.
In both cases he holds huge grudges and blames me.  Sadly I don't think he has much in the way of clarity around his contribution.  No accountability ever.



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Re: Unequal treatment
« Reply #4 on: September 17, 2018, 10:35:24 AM »
My blatantly-favored GC "princess" nsis' wedding was at a fancy country-club with five-course sit-down dinner for 400, cocktail hour with open-bar, 8-piece orchestra, video-photographer, bridesmaids and groomsmen, extravagant flowers, day-long limo service, and $5,000 wedding dress, all paid-for by my parents.  My parents are wealthy.  Nsis didn't spend a dime for her wedding.  Me, her only sibling, the overtly-disfavored SG daughter, I paid for 90% of my wedding costs, for a modest garden wedding and restaurant sit-down dinner for 100.  Invitation-list was 75% my parents' friends and relatives.  Oh, and my parents threatened to boycott my wedding, unless I met all NBM's demands in exacting precise detail, at my dime.  At initial planning-stage, NBM expressedly offered to "spend same, gift balance unspent".  But I received, for a much less expensive wedding, for which I was out-of-pocket for my dress, nsis' dress, flowers, photographer, three musicians, etc. was $2,000 "wedding present", didn't even address inequity in wedding dress-price.



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Re: Unequal treatment
« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2018, 04:44:24 PM »
My mom took great joy in hurting me.  I look back and wonder if the basis for her favoritism towards GCBro was just to hurt me. 



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Re: Unequal treatment
« Reply #6 on: September 17, 2018, 05:58:35 PM »
I can relate to everything said here, so I hope I remember everything I was going to write, but yes, the theme is similar in various portions of my family. 

Starshine, my stepdad was not a dad to my brother whatsoever.  He treated him terribly, was not there for him the way a dad should be, but he was there for his second wife's kids, who already had a dad.  Stepdad now calls most of those kids worthless since his second wife is deceased and he went back to my mom. 

Starboard, I think you may be onto something there.  As long as a child remains dependent and unsure of themselves, the PDs have control.  I got the most crap from my mother at a time when I started gaining more confidence.  Despite that she claimed she "didn't like where my life was going" because I still didn't have a "career".

Getting OOTF, I had a similar experience in my mom's side of the family.  One great-aunt who was the SG in her family of origin was going to visit us one year, didn't know her way around the city, had foot issues and my mother was going to make her take the bus to us (with an hour-long walk).  I was horrified and told her she wouldn't make the other great-aunt do that!  Thankfully I had gotten my license and car then and I went to the airport and got her.  I couldn't believe it though. 

Rose, I've never been able to find out who is the SG in my family since I think brother and I both played it at times.  There are lessons the favored kid doesn't learn because they're catered to, and that is definitely part of my problem.  It was all part of the manipulation.  Actually my brother and I have many of the same problems despite being completely different otherwise. 

Daughter, that's terrible what you've been through.  That was supposed to be your day.