My niece came home from camp and we were instructed by her mom (who is away) that she will not speak to H and that I am not to talk to her about the A. Fine.
We got home from our date night and she greeted me/ignored H who went right downstairs where we sleep/hang out while at my parents' place (we are in town on vacay).
She asked me if I would go downstairs to get her things as she and her friends had been hanging out down there. It was midnight. I calmly said, "No. you are almost an adult, I think you can do this on your own." She refused. This went back/forth with me remaining calm. She then turned to me and said: "you better be careful bc I can tell my grandparents about the A right now." Wow. My niece has learned vengence somewhere in her youth. Prob from watching her mother.
I turned to her, told her not to threaten me and when she repeated it again, I said, "You have no power over me and this situation. None. You can do as you wish. But you have no power over me."
I then went downstairs. She came to us twice (from the stairs - would not come down any further) telling us that "forgivenss would not be given if we did not tell my parents." She also thanked me for "ruining our family."
My H was amazed at my level-headedness. I felt for him and her nasty words but I also wanted to smack him for bringing this to our lives.
I am furious at my sister for confiding in her daughter about this grown up, private matter and then leaving this weekend to let her fend for herself.
I know we don't have to tell my parents but as BlakeSteele wrote the other day, "shedding light takes power away from the A." I am tired of this hanging over us. My niece is not going to have an "aha" moment anytime soon. Needless to say, I get her anger. She didn't ask for this shit to be dropped on her but she has to deal with it.
We all do.
She left this morning for camp. She hugged our boys. I wished her a good summer and told her I loved her and then she left.
I think I did the very best I could late last night and caught off guard.
Just wow. Yes there are repercussions to what he did, but what in the world makes her think this type of behavior is acceptable?
She is obviously acting out. I don't know the nature of relationship between your niece & husband prior. If it was close I don't think her hurt should be ignored. Again, I'm sorry but she IS a kid trying to make sense of a huge betrayal in her family. Remember how WE don't understand how the eff they can pull this crap? She can't either.
I think you handled yourself well. What she said was way out of line. Kids DO act out in hurt.
I'm going to say again I don't think you can keep this a secret. You might want to "out" this.
Maybe make your husband go talk to your dad? I don't feel sorry for cheaters. I don't ENJOY the repercussions but they put BIG pants on to go screw around. Need to find those big boy pants again. He will be humbled. Well, he needed to be.
This rocks our family & just as we couldn't put our finger on what was wrong in the marriage, but knew SOMETHING was up. Your parents have to "feel" the same. I'm sorry, it's not good news.
If you are in a tight knit family or are trying to be, I wouldn't let my husband "skip" the opportunity to face the rage & hurt of my parents. It will give him greater accountability.
This sucks for all. Don't crazy yourself with damage control. He made the mess. He can clean it up.
5454....love the Willie wonka reference! Made me smile. But at the heart of this is not a spoiled child...but a damaged one. Speaking from experience...having a dad just disappear from your life at a young age is tough (my Dad had an affair, was a deal breaker for Mom). Add to this what appears to be a Mom that did not fully heal from her broken marriage AND apparently is choosing to be her friend and not a Mom...and we would do good to find compassion for this teenager. I know you were not really running her down, and I do like the reference.... just hurts me to see how much damage A's inflict onto people who had no choice in this matter. All of that does NOT give her a free pass to inflict new damages. She is 17...I am 42. I have chosen to add damage where I had no right to....what control would I have had at 17?
Just unfathomable how much affairs cost.
God be with us all. May we all have the fortitude to change and grow through this to break this costly and damaging cycle.
[This message edited by blakesteele at 7:04 PM, July 14th (Sunday)]
He has never shied from telling my parents. He said he deceived them too and cannot imagine going through life with them not knowing. We live outside the province so we feel telling them face to face is important. We haven't had an opportunity to do that until now (I found out in Dec.).
BlakeSteele: My niece saw her dad for the first and last time before she turned three. Very sad. He has disappeared on his current wife and two kids so...a real deadbeat. It is no wonder she is angry. Her mom's bf has been on/off again for the last 16 years as well. My sister relays his "I love/miss you" messages but where is he?
The therapist said that she sees things very black/white and would be questioning herself ie "what does this say about me that I could like a person who could do this?"
Today my horoscope suggested I break free from my internal prison. Not having my parents know is that prison given the situation. If my niece did not know, I would never tell them.
[This message edited by LA44 at 7:06 PM, July 14th (Sunday)]
It came up early in my counseling that I have strong black and white wiring in me too....must have been hard wired in me. Good news is I am changing and it feels good! There is hope for your niece.
You state that if your niece did not know you would not be telling your parents...but I sense a certain calm from you both about this event. This is why we believe things work out for a reason.
I would suggest that the progress you and your fWH are achieving and displaying COULD cause your sister to become more aggressive...out of anger that she did not experience that in her own marriage (whether that was her choice, husbands choice, or both)....may cause her to experience some serious "what ifs". Maybe not. Just a thought I have had with how my parents would view what my wife and I are attempting to do. At one point I actually said to my mom..."mom, i know you will love me if I choose to divorce....but are you prepared to love and support me if I choose to reconcile?". There was a noticeable pause before she answered ".....yes.".
Never ever thought THAT exchange would have been a part of my relationship with my Mom.
We have strengths within us we never knew we had.
[This message edited by blakesteele at 7:20 PM, July 14th (Sunday)]
"You have no power over me and this situation. None. You can do as you wish. But you have no power over me."
Such a powerful truth for you to know.. something that gives you calm and centers you.
Did your sister ever get the chance to R with her ex? I wonder if she isn't jealous of the chance you are taking at R that she didn't get?? I find it sad that the anger runs so strongly in that family unit.
I hope your niece runs into another teen at camp that has an A story and they can learn from each other. Stranger things have happened.
We are done fighting with each other and decide to fight FOR each other.
It sounds like you do have a particularly close family. How awesome! Congratulations! It has drawbacks sometimes yes? They don't outweigh the positive benefits but part of it still.
I think you & your husband are going to have a HUGE breakthrough to tell your parents. I'm sure they have noticed something "off". I think you guys will experience a breakthrough in healing with confession, however scary an aspect.
It is so hurtful & my heart goes out to you. My family needs to have a family meeting to address an old family secret which has held a tremendous amount of power & wreaked a lot of damage. I JUST found out. In my case, this should have happened long ago.
It is my experience "secrets" are bad, just bad.
My sister never M her daughter's "dad". He really ditched them and while she has been in love w current bf this has been on-going for 16 years! I know her anger towards me is based on the fact that I am "the good girl" and she feels like we are deceiving my parents and we need to get it out for her daughter's sake. I disagree as to why that should be the reason to tell them...but I do feel calmer knowing that we will share this with mom/dad. Me nd H are going out tonight. I am a writer and we will put something down on paper that is simple, genuine and true. I know what they will want to hear:
#1. That I am ok
#2. They will want to know they can do to support us/specifically me.
The great thing for my parents is that H is leaving the vacay 5 days before me/boys so they will have lots of time w me while in the shocked stage. I do trust my H solo too. He is vying for a spot on a Cdn golf team so...I know where he will be!
I have felt bad on/off for telling my N she had no power over me. I wish I would have hugged her first. I was so mad when she threatened me. I couldn't yell, tears were far away...the words just came from remembering part of blakesteele's first note.
Thank you for reading this story! We will tell them tomorrow night or Wed. morning.
[This message edited by LA44 at 9:20 PM, July 15th (Monday)]
I know my dad can talk to her and help her thru this. My sister certainly has not done that.
I am so grateful for SI.
[This message edited by LA44 at 9:16 PM, July 15th (Monday)]