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Thread: My sister is trying to come between my niece and i

  1. #1

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    My sister is trying to come between my niece and i

    Hi there
    Well basically I am wondering if anyone could give me some advice as I am at a loss of what to do.

    I have been in my nieces life since she was born. My sister has always been very jealous of me because I have managed to keep my weight down over the years and a whole load of other things that are too long and complicated to go into here.

    So basically I think my sister and so does my husband and several other people, has a personality disorder. She is obsessively jealous of not just me, but many people. She has had many boyfriends leave her, and two husbands have also left because she is demanding and very very controlling. The last marriage she had she produced a beautiful daughter; the only reason though, that she wanted this child, was because as she put it ďthis child will knock Benís son off his perchĒ. As she was also very jealous of her ex husbands son so she thought that by having a child with him (which he did not want) she would make him love her child more than his existing child. It actually made their whole marriage disintegrate further. She became very bitter as he worked longer and harder more and more To be away from her drama and negativity. Finally her ex-husband left her. He still sees my niece regularly And he has a new partner but my sister causes all sorts of drama which I wonít go into here.

    When my sisters ex husband left her, although my sister loved her, my niece was very much in an inconvenience to her. My niece was often palmed off on my mum and stepdad and spent most of her very young years in the care of her grandparents nearly every weekend or whenever possible. Consequently as I am close to my parents I got to spend a lot of time with Annabel. I grew to love her very much. She is now 12, 13 in about four months time and she is very intolerant of her mother. She can see that my sister is very much a drama seeker and my niece prefers to be anywhere (with friends, with my parents, at her dads etc.) than with her mother because her mother gets very short tempered with her and shouts a lot.

    The problem is, as me and Annabel are close, my sister has, in the last two years, become very jealous and awkward about our relationship. I have got to mention that I never say anything negative about my sister to my niece. When it was my wedding last year my niece was bridesmaid and my mother and I thought it would be nice to have my niece staying over the night before the wedding, my sister made it very awkward and wouldnít give us an answer whether she could stay. Now she does this continuously. Basically if I ask if I can see my niece sheíll come up with some excuse as to why I canít see her. Usually it is because she wants to spend time with her. The last time she did this she said she hadnít seen Annabel because she had been at her dads for a few nights so she told me I couldnít have her because she was spending time with her, but then she let her stay at her friends instead. If I tried to ask her why she is preventing me from seeing Annabel, she gets very angry and causes a row and then it ends up where we donít speak for months on end. I have tried to play her at her own game by agreeing with her about everything but she still makes it very difficult for me to see Annabel.

    Even Annabel is now saying ďmy mum seems to have a problem with me seeing my auntieď. I have to wait for Annabel to be at her grandmas before I can see her, but consequently this means if I already have plans, I wonít get to see her. This is really hurting me as I Love Annabel so so much. I do not want us to drift apart. I donít know what to do for best. My sister is not approachable in the slightest.

    Forgot to mention, I have never wanted children and my sister has always put pressure on me to have them. I think she is very angry that I build a relationship with my niece and havenít had all of the parenting stuff.

    My mum is no use either because she is very much weak in the shadow of my sister, and my sister has always been very dominant over my parents. It is as though my parents are scared of her. I asked my mum what she would do if her sister was doing the same to her (Preventing her from seeing her neice) And my mum said she would give up, which further hurt me even more as it is though everybody wants me to forget my niece and our relationship.

    Thank you if you have managed to read this far. Hope somebody can give me some advice of how to manage this situation.

  2. #2
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    It's up to the mother and child how much you are welcome in their lives. Your hatred contempt and jealousy of your sister is quite unhealthy. Make an appointment with a therapist to sort out where all this negativity is coming from. Your bad attitude could be why your niece is spending less time with you. Hopefully you are happy in your work, relationship and other aspects in life. Do not obsess over this and allow the niece to come to you in her own time. In the meantime ease up on the hate.

  3. #3
    Platinum Member Rose Mosse's Avatar
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    Your relationship with your niece and your sister is very disturbing. I'd suggest you really speak to a third party professional and try and uncover what's happened to you in your past. Don't put your niece or sister in these positions anymore. You're causing more trouble in the family than I think you realize and you are the source of your own grief.

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    I would look forward to the day your niece is 18 and call her own shots and decides who she wants to see and when.
    Also, you know she is at your parents' house on weekeds, so why don't you free up your weekends instead of complaining that you have plans and cannot see her.
    I do think that you need to let go of being so resentful of your sister. Set boundaries for sure.

    but

    So basically I think my sister and so does my husband and several other people, has a personality disorder.


    but deciding someone has a personality disorder is so out of line and not healthy

    Also, if the niece sleeps over at a friends house, that's great. Stop acting as if everything is a swipe against you.

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  6. #5

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    Umm did you not read anything I have typed ? I donít have a problem with my niece and my sisters relationship. I know she is her mum and the person that gets to say what Annabelle does or doesnít do. All I want is to be a part of my nieceís life. Why is that too much to ask?
    Annabelle loves being with me. She frequently asks to spend time with me but her mum denies it just through pure jealousy - even my mum has said this.

    Also I try to make myself available as much as I can when Annabelle is at my mums but my sister even takes her when she knows I wonít be there and I just want to make plans with my niece in advance sometimes.

    As for therapy, yes Iím having it and I clearly should have listened to my therapist when she said you have your own answers to your own questions, not some random people on the internet with obviously their own triggers. Seems I hit a raw nerve with some of you eh?

    Thanks for the so-called advice. Wonít bother with this website in future as you clearly donít read the posts properly.
    Last edited by SueEvans; 04-23-2019 at 01:52 PM.

  7. #6
    Forum Supporter ~Seraphim ~'s Avatar
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    The thing is this is your sisterís child. There is nothing you can do until your niece is an adult.

  8. #7
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    Originally Posted by SueEvans
    Umm did you not read anything I have typed ? I donít have a problem with my niece and my sisters relationship. I didnít want to be a mum myself and am happy to be an aunt. Annabelle loves being with me. She frequently asks to spend time with me but her mum denies it just through pure jealousy - even my mum has said this.
    Thanks for the so-called advice. Wonít bother with this website in future as you clearly donít read the posts properly.
    If your mom and you are "diagnosing" your sister, deciding she does things because of jealousy - its going to be hard for your perception of her to ever change and break out of what you expect her to be. the "greedy one" or the "smart one" or the "troublemaker" in the family have a hard time for the family to see them as anything else or to change.

    This kid has enough push/pull between having to divide her time with mom, dad, and then *trying* to maintain friendships as well as seeing adult relatives. Instead of being angry when Anabelle has a chance to do a sleepover at a friend's and look at it as cutting into YOUR time and being kept away from you, just look forward to the next time you see her. If she expresses an interest in seeing you, don't look at every time she has to be at her dad's or every time she spends with a friend as a slap against you. Just say "next time we see eachother, maybe we can do X." and that can be in two days, or in three weeks - on her time. It just makes it easier on the kid.

    Are you able to communicate by email or interact by social media?

  9. #8
    Forum Supporter ~Seraphim ~'s Avatar
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    Also at this age they become much more interested in friends than relatives and this is normal and healthy. I have an adult child and 14 nieces and nephews.

  10. #9

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    I AM not angry at Annabelle seeing her friends at all - heck, sheís nearly a teenager for Christ sakes. I was exactly the same at her age. I just want to make plans to spend time with her, when appropriate and when she wants to see me as well, without her mother stopping it for no other reason.

    Why do you keep twisting my words and using them against me? I will state again:

    Annabelle loves to spend time with me and wants to but her mum makes it difficult.
    I absolutely agree she should spend time with her friends and understand they are more peer focused at this age.
    All I want is to have a relationship with my niece without having any drama. Before anyone says it, no I donít want her constant company but I just want to continue taking her out and/or spend time with her.

    Iím done here because yíall intent on having a go at me rather than offering helpful advice.

  11. #10
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    I have a very different take, because I have a very similar situation in my family. Almost exactly the same dynamic, in fact, and yes, everyone is scared of that one person.

    In my case, the niece is now an adult, and I have always been, and am still very much, a part of her life.

    But, as others are telling you here, I had to let go and defer to her mom, and just let her float in the family, while she continued to grow up. I continued to give awesome birthday presents, etc., but I let my niece come to me, rather than me going to my niece. This way, it kept the peace in the family, while allowing her mother, who is her rightful parent, have the control that the parent needs.

    Your niece's mom, your sister, might be cuckoo for cocoa puffs, but unless she is literally abusive, there is nothing you can, or should, do. I know this is hard to observe, but you'll just have to do it.

    In my case, I've been able to maintain a cordial relationship with the mother, and a great relationship with my niece, by doing this.

    I, too, never said one bad word to my niece about her mother. But, when my niece was around 19, she came to me, complaining and crying about her mother, and all the damage that occurred over the years. I listened, and my niece asked me why I never said anything all the years earlier, and I just said that it was her mother, and I was "just" the aunt, and it was not my place, as her mother would control me right out of ever talking to her again. My niece looked at me and said, "Well I'm an adult now, so I control who's in my life", and that was that. That was actually many years ago, and we are still very close, and I still get along with her mother, albeit from a distance.

    I know this is hard, and you are not wrong for feeling this way. I just want to offer you support, as I know how difficult this is. You will have to let go, and let your relationship with your niece play out however her mom wants it to play out, until she is an adult.

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