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Small thing I'm still angry about. (vent)


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That I was made the psychologist of the family from age 6 on.


That I spent so much energy worrying about everyone else.


That my parents never encouraged me to stand up for myself and my whole family used that to their advantage.


That I went through a serious depression for years an no one in my family seemed to notice or care.


That my mother now acts meek and is surprised that after years of criticism her child are distant from her.


That my dad enables my mothers behavior.


That my sister stop me from getting a job when I was living with her. And, more importantly, I let her.


That no one (including me) has the balls to deal with all this BS that has gone on in our family for years.


That my dad sided with my sister about the job just to keep peace in the family.


That my mother threatened to disown me if I took a road trip, that I let her stop me and my dad enabled her. Also that my dad tried to make it better by complimenting my driving.


That I've helped my sister so much but when I told her I might need jaw surgery she brushed me off.


That when I meet some new my sister said, "I still think you need a guy who is xyz. You can bring light to his world." Ok, none of that had anything to do with what would make me happy. Just what I can do for others.


That my family still complain I dont call them enough. I get anxiety every time I do.


That I have no backbone with them.


Thank you for listening.



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Go to the gym and develop your backbone!

Seriously.... you now see the problems and it is in your power to change YOU.

Not mom/dad or sis.

You cannot choose your family but the dynamics shape you.

Time to prioritize YOU.


If speaking with them causes anxiety... limit it.

Live your life and don't let anyone in the future take advantage of you.


All about CHOICE. Choose wisely!

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You're hitting the age in adulthood where your past/childhood transitions from being a legitimate holdback to a crutch/excuse to not move forward. The good news (great news, actually) is that its a choice. You can use that to explain why you're this way or that...why you don't have this or that...why you can't do this or that....OR, you can do what many people with difficult childhoods (almost everyone in one sense or another) do which is get counseling, read some good books, do group therapy, have difficult conversations confronting their family, start exercising, yoga, meditation.....do *something*.

At a lot of points in life its easy to say "my family this/my family that"....then you reach a certain tipping point where it becomes something you either allow to handicap you in the world or move on from. Once you're in your 30s talking about how your life is x, y and z because of how you grew up, you come off like a victim with no control over their life's path. You've reached that age where you can go either way and I would encourage you to face those demons (group therapy is especially good for healing dysfunctional family dynamic--not group as in *with* your family--but with other people). It is well worth the time, energy, effort, pain, re-living of awful things and the money....really your wellbeing and a healthy life ahead is priceless. So make that effort. You won't regret it.

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I'm in my late 50s and just realizing i am the way i am because of my family! Still.....all i want is appreciation.


I know i should DO things to make ME happy....but i want to DO things that other say...WOW that's great...you did a good job.


Never got that growing up...and I'm doing the same things to my kids....ugh


Maybe part of why I'm a hairstylist and massage therapist...making other's look and feel good! lol

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Thanks for the replies guys! This is something I have been struggling with for the past few years. All you advice makes perfect sense and in the logical part of my mind I know exactly what I have to do. I'm finding it to be a "easier said than done" situation. When I have more time I'll post a longer reply.

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Moontiger, I agree with the others that you have a choice, because you DO!


I went through a similar phase of being angry and sad about things that happened in my childhood. The thing is, you can’t change the past, you can only change the way you look at it now, through the eyes of an adult. That does not mean you have to forget what happened, but don’t let anger rule your life. The behavior of your parents is the result of their respective upbringings and this goes back generations and you can’t change them. You only can change yourself, and that does not happen overnight, it’s a continuous process if you are willing to work on yourself and you will still have some setbacks.


When it comes to family, over the years, I have developed my own ideas about family. You should not get anxiety when you speak to them. Whenever I knew I was going to see my brother (and that wasn’t very often, since I moved country accross Europe), I had sleeping problems and could hardly eat for a couple of weeks prior to seeing him. At some point of time, my parents broke off contact with me. I gradually broke off contact with my brother and later with my sister. In my view, family should be a place, where you feel loved, respected, protected and above all where you should feel safe. A place where you can express your ideas and opinions, without being criticized all the time. A place where you can always go back to, in case the whole world is against you, a place where people stick together. My family was nothing of that at all, I have experienced the opposite. I feel better since I don’t have contact with them anymore.


I am not telling anybody to break up with their family, because this is a personal choice, but it turned out to be the best for me. Family for me is not the “holy” or “sacred” thing that most people think it is. If people think bad of me because I don’t have contact with my family, it is their problem and not mine. And believe me, I had to hear quite some comments about it.


In order to feel better about my childhood, I have decided to concentrate on the positive things, because not everything was negative. So here is my list, which I put together over the years:


- Mom, thank you for teaching me to speak with 2 words: "yes sir", "no ma’am";

- Mom, thank you for teaching me to say “thank you” and “please”, because good manners will get you anywhere;

- Mom, thank you for teaching me to share things with my siblings. I have learned that the world is not all about me;

- Mom, thank you for teaching me how to cook, iron, clean and make me do a lot of house hold chores;

- Mom, thank you for making me save my money I earned during my vacation jobs;

- Mom, thank you for telling me how important it is to be independent as a woman;

- Mom, Dad, thank you for emphasizing how important a good education and studies are;

- Dad, thank you for letting me help you whenever you did some repairs in and around the house. I make quite a good handyman actually;

- Dad, thank you for making me change a tire before letting me go on vacation with my car for the first time. I will never forget that I once helped out a male co-worker, who had no clue how to do that, and I am still proud of that as of today.


Whenever I feel sad or angry, it still happens sometimes, I concentrate on my positive list, because I am determined to not let my past influence my future in a negative way. And as I get older, things get better.


So keep your head up and keep on smiling!

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