my quote of the moment: "if you can attain repose and calm, believe that you have seized happiness." ~julie-jeanne-eleonore de lespinasse

March 13, 2013

you can choose your friends, but you can't choose your family

so here's some real talk about my family and the fact that i don't know how to deal with parts of it.

and when i'm talking about my family, i mean more than just my hubby and my kids. i mean my parents and his parents and all of our sisters. which is tricky when you try to think about everyone together, because we're all so different.

i suppose it's something that's always been difficult, blending families through marriage. mine is a story that is just like so many others, the way i was raised and the way my husband was raised were very different. more than that is the way our families interact with each other, which is really what i'm having issues dealing with.

when i was younger, still in high school and living with my dad, i wasn't ridiculously close with my sisters. it's not that we didn't get along, it's just we had very different interests. through growing up and moving out, getting married and having kids, i haven't really gotten much closer to them because our lives are so different. that isn't to say that i don't like spending time or hanging out with them, because i do. just like i enjoy spending time with all of my parents, though it doesn't mean i feel the need to call them everyday. once a week to touch base is usually how things work with my parents and sisters and i.

not with my husband. his family, the relationship he has with his parents and sisters, is close. ridiculously close in my opinion. he calls his parents everyday, and depending on his mood he'll even call his sisters a couple of times a week to find out what is going on. and everybody in their family likes to know what is going on with everyone else. sometimes it causes conflicts, huge blow outs where they don't speak for days. but just as quickly as the drama starts, it ends. they apologize (or not), and get over whatever it was, and move on to the next thing. it might be my hubby and one of his sisters fighting, with the others expected to take sides. and the next weeks it's probably two of the girls exchanging words, with my hubby drawn into the mix.

it boggles my mind, really, how into each others lives they are. to me it seems that they don't make big decisions without running it by everyone else. or they have to share what's going on in detail. which is why, when one of them doesn't agree with the others' choice, what they've done or what they're doing, they say something and then the drama starts. i don't know why they need to share every detail, why they need to be so invested in each others' lives. if they would just focus on themselves and worry about their own little families, their own spouses and children, then maybe there wouldn't be all this constant fighting. because it seems that if it's not one of them fighting, it's the other. with calls of "why can't you just be happy for me?" or "why ask what i think if you won't listen?"

though that isn't to say that i don't sometimes wonder what it would be like if i was overly close with my own sisters, if we over-shared every intimate detail of our lives. i wonder if we would still get along like we do or if we'd fight constantly like my hubby and his sisters?

one thing i do know with 100% certainty is that, if something were to happen, if tragedy were to strike or if any of us needed something, our sisters would be there. angry words forgotten and week long silences broken. because no matter how different our relationships are with our siblings, i know that we can count on each other when we need. and that fact is more important than knowing the day to day details, or lack there of.

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