Dear Aunt Catherine,
Spending time with you makes us feel bad; bad about you, bad about our mom, our grandmother, your daughters, and bad about our dad. Being in the middle stinks. Upending our family in this way makes you enemy#1–we would have preferred a different experience of you. Required participation in something that causes our mother pain– Being made repeatedly to hug and to sit close, while sternly encouraged by our dad to smile on command also feels awful. We believe that hugs are reserved for people of trust. How can we trust someone who does this to our mother, OUR family? We are just children. Why would you bring us into this? Do you have any idea how much pain you bring to everyone but you and our dad?
Also, we find your behavior towards him embarrassing. We get it. You like him and want him to like you back. He probably enjoys spending time with you because you have expensive things and guns AND it mostly, it feels like another win for him in divorce. He still enjoys winning, over our mom. We don’t want him to win or make her lose…we want them to work together as our parents. We deserve cohesive co-parents. Right? Your behavior suggests to us that we do not.
Your relationship with our dad adds tension between our mother and father and escalates their difficulty to co-parent us as a team. They are divorced. It is hard enough! You didn’t even know our dad before our parents awful divorce and our move here. Developing a relationship with him while not speaking to our mom makes no good sense. It can be explained as nothing wholesome at all. Purely divisive and hostile, very damaging to our parents as a unit.
Betrayal. He likes to spend time with you, because he does not know anyone here in Charlotte and you are the only woman consistently fawning over him. Maybe if you left him alone, he would meet someone. With your
daughters, we can not feel close to them because our energy goes entirely into pretending that we are behaving as normal and loving. And why must we, talk to you– but your daughters not to our mom? It all seems very intentionally mean-spirited- spiteful. Bullyish. We are reprimanded when we don’t smile and act happy FOR you, so we do our best to please our dad which means performing for you…then we go home feeling crummy about it– to a mother who tries and mostly fails to accept what is happening. All she would like is to be able to parent us with our dad without added stress.
Your mom is yours. You belong to each other. We get it. Go Be family. Enjoy.
You possibly think you are creating closeness for us with you and our grandmother. Maybe you honestly cannot see how it is not possible for us– to feel love and connection with people who divide our tiny family further and whom don’t mind alienating and wrecking our mom. Her greatest fear is that we will grow up believing that it is ok for brothers/siblings/family to do things of this nature—to anyone.
Make things right with our mother or let US be. Any connection to our dad’s family is totally inappropriate. Our mother deserves peace. Anyone thinking otherwise, is not genuinely interested in loving US. Please. Just stop. Just because you can do a thing, does not mean you should do it.
You can do better. We cannot. We don’t get a choice. You are hurting us. Respect us enough to STOP.
FROM: Our mother’s sonsMuch Love,
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3 Replies to “A Letter From My Sons”
Wish I could write the “story of X part of my life” like you can. Things are so constantly chaotic hereabouts. Kate and I are doing ever so much better than when she first moved in with me, but… life just seems to be a slow old steam engine, rusty, loud and slow. Given to falling apart. Needing work, work that I know nothing about.
I go around thinking I have no friends, too, and then it turns out I do have friends. Friends. Not mere acquaintances. Charlie is going to be in town very soon and we will get to go out and TALK like friends. Lila writes me letters of friendship, although she doesn’t get that I don’t travel any more and cannot make the much-desired trip to her home. Mary Ellen and Judith are both in even worse health than I am, but we still love to talk, even if we don’t remember what we are talking about. Sometimes it’s even funny.
Steve lives in the Southern Hemisphere all over, and is talking about coming up here soon, too. But we have filled up all our guest spaces… Still, I’d like to see him some more.
Sometimes I feel that I am going to die very soon. I don’t want to drag on after Mary Ellen is gone. But she doesn’t want to have to hang around after I and some of her other friends are gone. (We are definitely BFFs tho.)
I’m just responding to your Letter From My Sons. That is so “from your heart.” That is what I don’t really have, but feel I’m getting closer to. Maybe even be able to write about someday?!?
I hope you will write and wish for you, only that you live as long as you like. Hopefully you and Mary Ellen can get some good timing going. I am so fucken tired from this thing called life and have no desire to live long, just long enough to see my children into adulthood and families of their own. Lord knows their family experience with the FOOs leave a lot to be desired. Sounds as if you have many good and loving friends and it is amazing that yo call get to spend time together. Can you please have Kate to email me in the event of your passing. I really cant bare the thought of just no longer hearing from you here i=or in our lil meetings.
I have taught my sons some brilliant language and I bet if they could write the letter, they might throw some eff bombs. They refer to always sister as cringey…which is hysterical. And they saw this meme I posted a few weeks ago with a fat cat scooting away saying Todaloo mothuhphukkuh and they do love to say it…..here at home. I love how much they know about me, my family experience and my best friend who lives here. They love hearing the horrors of our choices and watching us laugh until we cry at what morons we were. Their favorite thing to know right now is that when we were about 13, we bought and wore matching hats at the beach one summer that said “Carolinas are for lovers”…My best memories are with her….and she is here with us helping us build more wholesome and sweet memories. So grateful. I love Sweet Greg, but SHE is my person. We have loved each other for more than 40 years and will turn 50 together in a few months. Keep writing! Do not ever stop. Love you. Todaloo mothuhphukkuh x
todaloo mothuhphukkuh! What a masterpiece. I don’t llook at your comments because I didn’t know they were herek but this one is great!
Best friends are truly forever, always the roof-beam of our lives.. Mary Ellen! How could I have lived my life without her? I knew all about her sex life, you know, which of her few lovers were adequate and which were not. She has had an interesting life, much more money than I, but otherwise we are the same person. Well, she is much more upscale, has little shops where the owners and all the sales people know her and call her when something comes in she might like. She has the best cleaners in Portland, the Sparkle Sisters. But I recently lucked into getting the best cleaners anywhere when this young woman was just starting up in business.
ME and I would sit in her living room with a pot of tea and laugh until we nearly fell off our chairs.
Be assured that I’ll give Kate your address to notify you in case I fall off the twig, as we say..
You should outlive me by years, but just to be on the safe side, do let someone have mine to notify me if y ou get in a wreck.
Tomorrow is Kate’s b.d.. I got her a leather coat for riding her motorcycle. It’s not a Hog, but a Honda 1100 something or other.
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