Saturday, March 22, 2008

My Family Ought to Live in Egypt

Denial -- so much more than a river in Egypt.

My family lives in such denial about so many things. My parents probably raised two of the most dysfunctional human beings ever, but in their eyes nothing could be farther from the truth. While they may sit and complain about us in private to one another they put on the happy face for the rest of the world and like to pretend we are the all American family.

When N and I arrived without W, my mom asked where W was, and I told her he didn't come with us. She said in a most disbelieving voice, "Nooooo, where is he really?" I had to tell her several times that he wasn't with us for her to believe it. When we got inside she asked why W wasn't with us, and I told her we were having problems and don't do much together anymore. I was trying to come up with the right words for telling her about the divorce, but she quickly changed the subject once she found out there is trouble in paradise. She clearly didn't want to go there so I dropped the conversation too.

All weekend I waited for the subject to reemerge but it did not. Nobody said a thing about the 400 lb Gorilla sitting in the family room as we watched the NCAA tournament. We talked a lot. We talked about college basketball. We talked about the flooding that is not too near but not too far from where my parents live. We talked about politics and the presidential race. We talked about N and how much he's grown and how mature he is getting. We talked and talked and talked. Not one word was said about W, by any of us.

As I drove home today I decided to inform them of the impending divorce in a letter. That's the example they've always set. That's how they informed me about Dad breaking his leg a couple of years ago. If it's uncomfortable to talk let's just send a letter. What a bizarre family dynamic we have.



Bunny said...

That bites. My in-laws are like that: ignore the problem and it will go away. That's how they treated Spousehole's depression and ADHD when he was growing up. Worked GREAT. I actually do that sometimes myself and it doesn't work at all. Ever.

I hope the letter thing works for you. I think you would feel better to say the words aloud, however, even if just on the phone. Think about it.

Trueself said...

Bunny - I'll think about it, but understanding my family dynamic I really do think that writing a letter is the best way to go. That way I don't put pressure on them to have to provide an immediate response. They can mull it over for a while before they have to say anything about it.

All of her Secrets said...

My family is like that too. I actually sent my parents an email telling them. They weren't surprised but they haven't said alot either. I've been here almost a year and they still have not visited our new place. sigh I just try not to care anymore. I'm a big girl and can take care of myself.
Best of luck to you!

Trueself said...

AOHS - It's nice to know I'm not alone. Families can be so weird about things. I don't get it, but I don't have to I suppose.
And thanks, I can use all the luck I can get.