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My brother and his conflict with our parents


Seymore

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My brother is 25, 4 years younger than me. He has a better job than me and I believe he is the more intelligent, well-read one between us (he's also my only sibling).

 

In the last year, my family has really come through for him. He got a DUI and my dad spend thousands to bail him out of it, but it wasn't a freebie, as my brother owes him the money back. He has been on bad terms with my dad since.

 

Our father is very opinionated, and if one of us talks about something going on in our lives, he'll give his opinion and talk about what we should do and tell us what's right and wrong. He never imposes on us, as he expects us to make our own decisions, he just tries to give us guidance, solicited or not. I take it as something to consider, my brother takes it as trying to control him or like our dad's trying to be impossible and disagree intentionally. Then my brother gets upset and lately he won't speak to our dad because of his opinions. This breaks our dad's heart.

 

My mom is very empathetic. If one of us is going through something, she gets emotionally involved to the point where she seems to experience our pain. I appreciate that she cares for us so much, my brother has the attitude of "leave me alone and stay out of my business".

 

A week ago, my brother was complaining about how his mattress was too small (his bed was an unused guest bed from our parents' house), and he'd been complaining about it before. So, my folks went to buy him a larger mattress, saying it was his upcoming birthday present. My brother got upset and still has an attitude with them, saying he never asked for it.

 

If our family gets together for a meal, it's totally uncomfortable because my brother is so standoff-ish. I get along with him perfectly - I'm the only relative he tells his feelings to. I feel he's unreasonable, but if I tell him that, he will close up towards me, too. My dad told me tonight that as long as me and him get along, my dad's happy, since him and HIS brother never got along.

 

My parents care. Almost TOO much. Since my brother's girlfriend dumped him shortly after the DUI, he's been so bitter towards the family. Yes, our parents tend to sometimes baby him, but he can't seem to get out of a jam on his own. I hate that we can't get along together as a family, though. I feel like the freaking arbiter. Once my brother isn't around, my parents ask me what's wrong with him. I have to communicate between both parties now. Even still, I think they even still pay for his car insurance. They do so much for him, and he seems so unappreciative.

 

Not sure what I'm looking for here. I guess I just wanted to vent.

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What do you mean by that?

 

I suggested he take a break from my parents for a week or so, just visit a coffee shop or something instead of visiting them. Maybe it'll give him time to miss them?

 

I also have been trying to hang out with him lately. He goes to the bar 3 nights a week with pals. I try to get him to hang out with me maybe once a month at a bar, he always says no. Last night I stayed at my parents' and he did too - he was watching some TV show and I tried watching with him, he shut if off, saying "there was only 2 minutes left anyway". It's like we get along when we talk, but we can't be a part of each other's life. I keep trying to take an interest in his life, but he cuts me off unless it's talking about things.

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Some young adults pass through a stage of life where they know everything and their parents know nothing. During this stage of life it would do everyone involved the most good if the young adult would launch themselves into the world as an adult relying only on themselves and making all their own decisions. This way they can complete the maturation process with the least amount of attitude.

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Some young adults pass through a stage of life where they know everything and their parents know nothing. During this stage of life it would do everyone involved the most good if the young adult would launch themselves into the world as an adult relying only on themselves and making all their own decisions. This way they can complete the maturation process with the least amount of attitude.

 

You'd think that by 25 that phase would be over with. I grew out of that when I turned 20. I got teased all the time because my dad wore a cowboy hat. If I was ever with them, it was 20 steps ahead of or behind them. Once I saw them as human beings who CAN err in their advice (and life, period), I just "got" them. No matter how much sense I try to talk into my brother, he just doesn't get it.

 

As great as they are, they're just like people my age, in lots of ways. They come home late, don't always do what they're supposed to, say things they regret and even maybe drink a little too much at times. Sometimes they even spoil their son when they shouldn't.

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He sounds like one of my aunts.

It seems like this is just his nature and if he isn't seeing anything wrong with this attitude, I doubt he'll change anytimes soon.

My aunt isn't exactly like him. But she is very very er.. defensive. She won't take help from her brother (my dad) nor her parents. Feels she knows everything. (She's now almost 60 btw, and not surprisingly still single with her attitude). You never mentioned this about your bro but my aunt always will see the bad/negative in people. Never the good.

 

I think your brother needs to maybe move out? Or has he already? Just seems like he needs time away from the family as you said. Could also be that he's mad at himself and for being the way he is, so he gets defensive and takes everything as a personal attack when his parents last intention is to attack him and try and make him feel bad.

He has insecurities perhaps, as my dad puts it.

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He's been living on his own for a couple of years. He just moved to a new town recently and he's making new friends at the bar now.

I understand it's a little overbearing being around my parents just about every night. Their place is on my way home from work, and if I have no plans I stop by there for dinner and coffee. Since my brother and his ex broke up, he's been there every day, just about. That's why I told him that maybe he should cut back to a couple of days a week and on off-nights go to a local coffee shop or something, not necessarily a bar, always.

 

Does anyone ever talk to your aunt about the way she's acting?

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There was a little bird that waited to long to fly south and buy the time he did , he got caught in an ice storm. He tried and tried to fly above it but ice began to stick to his feathers and he soon fell from the sky crashing into a snow-covered field. The little bird shivered and shook and knew that this would most certainly be his end, when he heard loud crunching in the snow around him. He pried an eye open in time to see a cows tail pointing down at him and just then the cow took a dump! all over the little bird “Oh this is terrible” the little bird thought “what a humiliating end”. But then the little bird noticed that he wasn’t cold any more in fact the ice on his feathers was quickly melting! And as he sat there in that pile of crap he noticed that the storm was passing and the sky was beginning to clear! The little bird was so happy that he was going to live that he began to cheerfully sing, but when he did a big tomcat heard the little bird. That cat pulled the bird out of the poo and ate him! The moral of the story is, just because someone craps on you does not necessarily make him your enemy, and someone who pulls you out of the crap does not always mean they’re your friend.

You might pass this story on to your dad, If your brother is out drinking as often as it sounds, your parents aren’t doing him any favors by helping him with the consequences. You are not responsible for him or his relationship with your parents You are only responsible for your relationships. If they ask you about him you should direct them to ask him. Good luck!

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