Loyalty

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all4peace

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Loyalty
« on: October 23, 2018, 09:47:12 AM »
This is a question that has been on my mind a lot in the last years as we gain distance from both sets of likely PD parents, and watch those parents try to hoover our closest friends. My friends are very aware of the dynamics, and not hooverable, except for one. One friend just doesn't get it, grew up with normal parents, and is a personality type that really doesn't like to get into deep stuff, family dynamics, etc. I love this friend, but we have more of a "doing" friendship and a friendship based on decades of knowing each other, caring for one another, and the deep ties you develop from time together over the years.

Her DH is a good friend of my DHs and has spent a lot of time in our home during certain seasons of the year. I love him also, have had many deep and good conversations with him about our abusive childhoods and likely PD mothers. He is overall kind, considerate and helpful, and also a very wounded, nonboundaried adult from the childhood he grew up in.

FIL has been hoovering this friend for years now. On the rare occasions we spend time with FIL, he makes sure to drop this friend's name into conversation. New friends DH makes, if FIL becomes aware, he hoovers them also. DH is the quiet type, it makes him ill to even consider conflict, and so DH says nothing. Meanwhile I sit seething with anger as I watch this happen over and over again.

FIL recently made sure we know that he is still in touch with DH's close friend, and getting information about our adult son through him.

I've taken this topic to therapy, and will again, yet it's shocking how long it can take to work through certain topics when you have PD parents on both sides of the family and they seem to constantly be sending behavior our way to work through in therapy.

So, I ask this in the religious section for a reason. I think there's a spiritual aspect to it and I don't know what it is. When I do a mental scan of my bible reading, only Jonathan and David come to mind, and Jonathan forsook his own father Saul in favor of his deep love for David. But other than that I cannot think of an example of loyalty in the bible.

We've made our friends aware of the long and deep history of abuse and neglect. I think they are willfully ignorant. I think they have a different view of what being a peacemaker means. I believe THEY may feel peace in being friendly to our parents, but the strife is displaced to us instead. It feels painful to me to open my home in love and vulnerability to someone who continues a friendship with a man who has deeply wounded my DH, remains unrepentant, and won't do anything to repair the damage. These are wounds that we will probably be working through our entire life as a married couple. It feels horrible to even consider telling him our home is no longer open to him. DH wants to leave it alone, I can't seem to leave it alone, and I don't even think it's the "right" thing to do.

I've had conversations with this friend before about boundaries and ILs, but I've never flat-out said I thought he was being a disloyal friend to my DH.

Is anyone willing to advise? We're now coming up fast on the time of year when he spends a lot of time in our home and around our property.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2018, 09:51:47 AM by all4peace »

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coyote

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Re: Loyalty
« Reply #1 on: October 23, 2018, 11:21:08 AM »
All4peace,
I can't say I have a lot of biblical advice except what Proverbs:

 Proverbs 27:10 New International Version (NIV)
10 Do not forsake your friend or a friend of your family,
    and do not go to your relativeís house when disaster strikes youó
    better a neighbor nearby than a relative far away.

All I can say is that IME folks that have no experience with PDs can't understand how nons can struggle with them as we do. Your friend has his interpretation of peacemaking base on his life experience. I'm not sure as I see him being disloyal to your H. In his eyes I bet he thinks it is because of his loyalty to your H he is making the effort.

All I can say is I have a sign in my office that says "Forgive Everyone Everything." It just works for me. Wishing you peace and strength as you go forward in the season.
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

Choose not to be harmed and you wonít feel harmed. Donít feel harmed and you havenít been. -Marcus Aurelius

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Summer Sun

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Re: Loyalty
« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2018, 01:40:22 PM »
A4P, I have experienced FOO hoovering friends, poaching, encroaching, overstepping whatever name you want to call it.  As a result, I keep my friendships and FOO separate. 

If this friend is aware of the abuse and chooses to be willfully ignorant based on their own experiences, I can see how their naÔvetť, and values, influence peacemaking differently.  I also really so get the impact of feelings of disloyalty and betrayal.  It seems like they are being used as FMíS?  As your FIL knows about DS?

I would have a conversation with this friend, briefly prefacing with the history of abuse, the need for NC for self protection, and request that he not disclose information about you, DH or DS to your in-laws.  And ask him flat out, can you do this?  If he canít, then I would put him on an information diet.  Forgive him, sure, he is naive.  But you donít have to feed him bullets for your FIL to pull the emotional trigger.

I had a situation where I was concerned my UPDb would contact BFF with some pretence and start the undermining or ask about me.  I asked BFF if contact and questioning did occur, could he say, ďdo you still have Summer Sunís number?  If not, I can provide to you.  Iím sure youíd rather speak to her directly.Ē  Can you do this BFF?  I was assured, yes.  This person has walked through the journey, witnessed the abuse, knows the depth of my struggles, and praise God, is safe and has my back.  What a gift. 

This approach is not suggesting disloyalty, simply instilling a boundary of sorts.  If future leaks occur, confront him that your request was not honoured and ask what he thinks you should feel like and what would he do in this situation? 

Summer Sun
"The opposite of Love is not Hate, it's Indifference" - Elie Wiesel

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all4peace

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Re: Loyalty
« Reply #3 on: October 25, 2018, 02:25:53 PM »
Coyote, it's a good reminder. I think the core issue is I simply don't see it the way our friend does. One of those irreconcilable differences that I think I either accept or don't.

Summer Sun, it's incredible how much this behavior happens with both our sets of parents. On my side, I think it is competitiveness. On DH's side, I think it is competitiveness and a desire for information about our lives, so that all can appear to be well even when it isn't. ILs are highly image conscious.

It's wonderful how your friend has handled it. Our friend, unfortunately, is now pals with FIL.

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Bloomie

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Re: Loyalty
« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2018, 10:33:09 PM »
all4peace having had friends "poached" and "harvested" for whatever reason by particular intrusive uPDin laws it has sadly changed the level of sharing or info I am able/willing to give to those friends. I am always conscious around how and what I share with anyone who shares the same circle even remotely - faith community, distant relative, old friend, you name it - with my uPD in laws.

To these friends, in the limited exposure they have to them, my in laws are thoughtful, friendly, and somewhat ubiquitous. They have also been part of the community at large and smaller faith community for decades which lends itself to a kind of cultural respect and good will - for these friends, I believe it is a different way to show loyalty in some cases not realizing them allowing themselves to be befriended and pulled in close is potentially unsafe for us and by extension creates distance in the relationship. 

I have found that my in laws are pretty intrusive in most settings with most people and they get a great deal of grace due to age and that they are "family" to us.  From what I can discern, these friends are showing respect to our family as we would to their parents the difference being we understand and could navigate that without revealing personal details of someone else's life because we understand the PD family system dynamic.

The few dear friends I trust and am more open with are unrelated and unknown to the in laws and if ever were to meet them are not naive to the motivations and undercurrents within difficult family relationships.

Like Summer Sun I have learned the very hard way to keep it all separate as much as I possibly can. I am sorry this dear friend is unaware and possibly naively putting your personal info out there.

"If you focus on the hurt, you will continue to suffer. If you focus on the lesson, you will continue to grow." Dr. Caroline Leaf

Bloomie 🌸