Jun 06, 2011
Recently I've had a lot of drama with my sisters wedding and because of circumstances, actions, etc....I became very upset with my cousin, Janet. I know for some it's no big deal to have a rift between cousins but for me it is, as I always viewed us (me, my sister, Janet and Russell) as being close. Our families lived together for several years when we were kids.
So, realizing I was upset with Janet, I e-mailed her to confront her about her actions. We met yesterday for lunch and I was shocked! She thanked me for calling her out on her actions and apologized. It felt good. Not so much that I "called her out" but that she understood my point of view and that we were able to talk about it. I was a bundle of nerves leading up to this as any other fights I've had lately (all with DH...LOOOOONNNNG story) have been very nasty, tense and just down right mean.
We sat, ate and talked for 2 hours about all kinds of things. Our lives today, our kids, etc. Then things turned to our past and I was floored to hear what she had to say. Her opinions of certain things as well as her possible memory of things.
Here is what I do know as fact: Russell and I are the youngest (same age, 1 month apart), Lisa is 5 years older than I and Janet is 2 years older than Lisa. My mom divorced my biological father when I was 2 and re-married my dad just short of my 5th birthday. When I was 4, my biological father died of cirrhosis of the liver. I do know he was a Marine in the war and was a very heavy drinker. I also know (discovered bits and pieces over the years) that he was also very abusive to my mom. One day, she decided she'd had enough, packed us up and left. He called later, told her to come home and he would leave since she had the kids. From there, they filed for divorce and that was the end of that.
But, to hear my cousin Janet talk...she seems to think that maybe my biological father sexually abused my sister. This topic came up once before by my sisters ex-husband but he never believed my sister...called her a liar about it. My mom also seemed to think this wasn't the case, that she wasn't abused my our biological father as she states she NEVER left us alone with him. As for his physical abuse, it was only directed at her and she left him before it turned on us.
Through the years, I can agree that perhaps, analyzing my sisters "issues" with men, etc., that maybe, possibly she was sexually abused. But I'm not sure by who. If she was, she never told ANYONE and to this day still hasn't. She's 38 now.
My cousin, Janet, seems to think that my mom wasn't there enough for my sister and the reason my sister is screwed up is because of my mom. Don't get me wrong, Janet's sense of my sister being screwed up is somewhat askewed. Yes, she's had a failed marriage and has made some mistakes, has self esteem issues, etc. but she lives a very full, active, productive life as well.
Janet then referred to a time when my sister was "raped" and how she felt my mom wasn't there for my sister and called her to help my sister. I remember this time very well! (I don't remember a lot of my childhood) I was in Junior High at the time and happened to come home sick for the day when my sister called my mom stating she had been raped. I went with them both to the hospital while she filed the report, had her exam and pictures taken etc. I was there when my mom did the best she could to help my sister through. Her calling Janet was only to give my sister more support, not because she didn't or couldn't support my sister. These are the times though, that Janet refers to as my mom not being there for my sister.
After Janet was done her little rampage about my mom, I then informed her my sister later told me the truth about that day. It was several years later, I believe I was now in my final year or two of HS. My sister told me she lied that day. She wasn't raped. She had simply "swapped" and then regretted her decision and didn't know what to do. My cousin only used this as further proof that my mom wasn't there for my sister.
I know, I could read a whole lot of ways into my sisters actions. She liked to date dangerous men, was promiscuous, drank, etc. But to say that my mom didn't do her job to me was just insulting. Maybe I am partial (lol) and can't see things for what they are but my mom was always there for me/us and still is. It's my sister that won't let her in and still doesn't. She doesn't even let me in. How can anyone remedy a situation if they are never told about it?
If our biological father, or someone else did abuse her, she still hasn't told us or her therapist. The only person she may have told was her ex-husband who has been known to make up lies as well. Right now, I'm left reeling with what she's said and what I feel to be possibly true to some degree. Like I said, given her behaviour over the years, does it scream abuse, absolutely. But by who??? How am I supposed to feel about this? What else don't I know or remember?