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Getting Pulled In Different Directions By Sister And Husband.

Discussion in 'Parents & Siblings' started by maddysweet, Mar 31, 2017.

  1. maddysweet

    maddysweet Silver IL'ite

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    Hello All,

    sorry for the long post.I am creating this thread to share my plight.This might be just a vent but also your insight will be helpful.
    I want to list all the helps my sister did to me and helps i did to her. i want to know if she has the authority to command me or i owe her my life so shud oppose my husband and do things per sister convenience.
    I have my own approach in helping my parents or siblings, but i cannot completely neglect husband as that will effect my kids.

    First i will explain abt my husband. He is a kind of person who thinks, wife is his property, all my time, my income should be dedicated to our family i.e husband and kids.
    he doesnt like even if i talk like 1 hr on phone with my parents. he feels concerned am always thinking abt the problems of my parents and siblings. being the youngest in house, he expects i shouldnt have any responsibility of parents. Like when my father was hospitalized, i should only go for visit come back , shouldnt think abt staying months india to serve him.
    now my mom is sick and he expects same. he says your dad and sister told as a youngest you were not having any responsiblities.
    i fought with him so badly and we went to level of divorce in last 3 months and made him agree that am gonna resign job and stay with mom for an year.

    last few yrs also did lot of trips to India fighting with him, it was manageable time as they were weeks of vacation. I left my kids with him few times so that i could take parents hospitals.
    I gave money more money than what my sister gave to parents , hiding from husband. Like no husband could imagine his wife is giving like 40-45 lakhs hiding but last 12 yrs that was the amount i saved without his knowledge.he didnt give any money to his parents. took his parents sister expensive vacations and i let it go thinking i did much more to my parents.

    now coming to my sister.
    we are 3 siblings. my sister is 6 yrs elder to me , brother is 4 yrs elder to me.
    my sister has a girl 13 yrs,my brother is div stays with mom and i have 2 kids. dad passed away few yrs back.

    if you have all seen Dangal movie, my dad was like that and put lot of hopes and dreams on my sister from childhood. since my brother was a very poor student and me the youngest. He used to dream to get her study and send abroad before her marriage. and she will help him financially. when relatives started asking abt marriage.
    she said to my parents, i am shocked you expect me to go abroad and earn like boy, all my friends are getting married.
    for 3 yrs me and my dad used to go every marriage bureau for her proposals. i was in my 1st or 2nd yr degree that time. Being so young, out of love and goal that sister shud marry NRI, used to call all proposal guys as my mom would be busy.
    finally there was 2 guys who liked sister,
    1 guy was smart, rich but just a graduate.
    2nd guy was engineer they claimed to be rich but asked for lumpsum dowry. i said lets go with 1st guy and my sister said no she want guy 2 as she didnt get NRI guy and marrying graduate is even bad.

    My brother and dad went to relatives did debts and did my sister marriage. The debts were huge. they demanded grand marriage and diamond set for my sister etc.

    Within a month we got to know, my BIL did engineering for 9 yrs, he is taking medication for depression and dont have any job. Their dependency was on my sister. she had lot of struggles past 15 yrs due to BIL inability,she went to USA ,well settled.
    first few yrs of USA, she sent money to my dad for my marriage expenses( as i kept a condition will not marry guy who takes dowry) and she gave money to my brother to buy car and his H1.
    she helped me finding a job in India.she searched my husband online for me.
    I got married went to USA.

    me and husband got good jobs on our own. my sister showed feelings like, i did helps to you, now you owe me your entire life. your husband works so dont worry abt money.
    she always shouts 3 things. I gave money for your marriage, i helped you with first job, helped during your 2nd delivery.

    when my second one was born, my parents didnt come since my brother will stay alone. my sister came for 12 days to my house from morning to evening and used to do cooking for me. I used to stay like 5 mins from her house at that time.
    she always says i did for your delivery.what she did was change diapers few times and get a curry for me. I used to only breast feed him and snanam also i took care of him.
    it was 8 days after my delivery, i cleaned house and arranged a surpride bday party for her in house since she helped me coming home.
    her MIL and BIL came did a big drama on 21st day which i kept quite and explained husband.

    here are the things i did to her.

    1. I was in midwest with hubby same city we had good jobs and she in east coast. she used to say, find job move to my city then you can help me.she used to cry with my BIL torturing her. she said need help as kid is growing. I used to have sleep less nights thinking how much torture she going thru.so i promised to her will move your city.
    You can imagine when we try to move to a specific city how tough the job search becomes.I found after one month struggle and my husband couldnt. still i went ahead and for 1 1/2 yrs husband and myself were meeting weekends. she says you moved my city and it only helped you during 2nd delivery. you didnt do anything to me which is such a big lie.

    2. first 3 yrs when i was 2 hours drive away, i only shud go2 sister place once in 2 weeks. she kept that condition and if i say my husband complaints. she starts yeling at my husband and me says tell him u r here coz of me etc.

    3. once i moved same city, i give rides to her as she doesnt drive.
    she does business trips and niece doesnt stand my BIL even a day. so when ever sister is outside niece in my home.
    i had 4 yrs a live in nanny and every week i used to give 2-3 curries to sister as she had a tough job.
    i placed my BIL twice in job in my own company. one place he got fired so badly and my boss stopped talking to me few months.

    4. Seeing my husband control on my finances, i made a option of saving like 500-1000$ monthly without his knowledge. and planned to send that money to dad .
    my sister asked CLEAR ME YOUR MARRIAGE expenses DEBT first. she couldnt wait until my brother gets job or she started feeling jealous i was earning well. so i cleared it, this is like within a year of my marriage.

    4. Then i started clearing debts of dad one of which was MY SISTER MARRIAGE DEBT. She said you dont need to do that, let dad or my bro sell house or clear it. But out of my love on dad, bro and sister i cleared.
    seeing me sending lumpsum money, she started sending monthly pocket money to my dad and brother.

    5. many times my BIL gave bad words to me directly on face and also my husband many times. and i had to explain so much to hubby and always convince him. and make him talk to BIL and adjust with his behavior.

    Now these have been going for 8 yrs, she spent like 3 months on doing my marriage search online and 1 month to find me a job in India,she gave marriage expenses which i returned in a year. she came when i delivered but only did feeding and curry.
    Its more tough i handle my niece who troubles me so much at home. I have took care of her like more than 15 days.

    I am like doing these for 8 yrs and reached my saturation point. when ever my parents need comes, she says fight with hubby, sacrifice your job and go immediately. Last 4 trips i travelled within a day. My husband kids keep sad face and boss gets irritated.
    where as she plans india trips like for 1 month, comes with entire family and makes my parents roam even in their sickness. she says by going out their health gets better.

    these behaviors of my sister are spoiling my every day life.
    The main thing i was dissapointed was -

    My father asked my sister to help him get a loan so he builds second floor of our house like 8 yrs ago. she refused and said she giving pocket money itself is tough and she dont want sign loan. also suggested him to ask me.
    I told my dad at that time, as i was in process of clearing debts with relatives it wont be good if we build house keeping debts, within few yrs will give him cash and he can build second floor with no loan. as my husband wont allow me to sign papers.

    I kept my word, within 2 yrs i gave lumpsum money and my dad brother built a beautiful house. I told them build a simple 1 extra floor. it would have done in a year.
    Now here my sister pitched in, she started feeling insecure when my parents were praising. she declared at this point to take a loan on her name and build extra floors.
    I was so upset. why she didnt do this 3-4 yrs ago and now this became big construction.
    and brought a point where now our house is so huge and tough to handle. It took 3 yrs for my brother to complete the house.

    SO OVER all my sister mentality. she wont take any step forward to get our parents brother out of trouble. whether it was clearing their debts, constructing house or during my parents sickness. she fights and pressures me to put first step and then she also comes forward.

    Now with my mom sickness its clear few weeks trips wont help. one of us has to move for 6 months atleast.
    how abt kids education,
    how abt job.
    how abt husband.

    I didn't even ask her you should move, while i was still trying to adjust the fact of my mom sickness, i thought we should take any relatives help or hire one more maid for cooking etc.....she yelled at me badly saying
    why your husband doesn't allow you to resign and move India.
    you guys have 2 jobs so you resigning is fine.
    your husband takes care kids and they are young, so its fine if they study India for few years.

    I told her, more than kids education , or job money. The main problem is the mindset of my husband who is torturing me now, why you have to resign move being youngest in house. why cant your brother or sister handle. My husband didnt stop me completely, he said go for 6 months which should be enough to take care of your mom. 3 months during holidays kids will stay with you and 3 months elder one will come with me and younger one 4 yr will stay with you.
    I thought this 6 months is fair enough, sure mom will recover and we can take her US.
    Now atleast after going USA, i hope my sister will keep mom in her only reason being my sister has remote job. But she will again definetely give me commands to take mom home and do drives for her. etc.

    I missed saying abt brother, he is with parents for 8 yrs, he took care all the minor issues of parents like cataracts, viral fever hospitalizations etc only past 2 yrs me and sister are going. he works in India and they are were like we will fire you if you do more offs. he took many offs for my mom appointments whole year. he alone cant handle and who will cook at home for mom. so not to blame him.

    My sister doesnt agree my helps as any great. Only says she doing my marriage expenses, finding me first job is the greatest of all and also coming to help me with first 2 weeks of my 2nd one delivery are great help.
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2017

  2. Rihana

    Rihana IL Hall of Fame

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    Maddy, what a mess. I will not sugarcoat it. At a time when you should be able to focus only on mother's health, care and associated decisions, all these things are coming up.

    Such things happens in families where money or resources are tight to begin with. Parents, and siblings, spend time, money, and other efforts on each other at various point of time, in varying amounts, for varying reasons, and later recall those in varying versions at various points in time.

    There is simply no resolution to dissecting the past. There is no way all will agree on any thing. Just to take one example, you both seem to have helped each other in getting married. Your help was provided when you were young and in college. Hers when she was already married. Your marriage has been happier and more settled. Hers had more struggles. How each of you looks at the help and the results will vary.

    Above all, like in many Indian families, no plans were made for such events like a parent needing such care. We wait for it to happen, then start looking at what each can do, and then, all buried resentments and feelings surface.

    You have to really get selfish (in a way) and more focused at this point. What do you want? Ideally, you want to take care of your mother as much as you can, as much as is needed, and also not disturb your marriage, household too much.

    So, let's talk only about you. This level of helping your siblings and parents, while lying to husband, who is supportive enough to take care of kids while you visit India, is not nice. Nothing can excuse such lying, on such an extended basis. You need to bring about a major change in how you deal with your sister, and how you provide support and care to mother. This everyone should drop everything and run to India at the same time is not realistic. In fact, taking turns makes more sense, after the initial few weeks have passed.

    You have to stop reacting to your sisters comments and suggestions that you should just drop everything and move. And above all, do not tolerate criticisms of your husband from her any more. Have some pride. Decide how much help you can do physically and remotely, and present that to her. Your husband's suggestion of 6 months stay, with older kid staying for 3 months, is more than fair.

    Also, don't toss away your job so easily. In the end, financial independence is any woman's most powerful strength.

    In families where such things happen, it takes such a life event, and one person finally saying "enough is enough" for attitudes to start changing.

    In short, stop looking for your sister's approval, and there is no need to respond to each of her comments, suggestions, orders. Take the high road. Each person reacts differently to a parent's illness.
    Umanga, sbonigala, NeetaR and 4 others like this.
  3. BhumiBabe

    BhumiBabe Platinum IL'ite

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    Wow, you have a lot on your plate. My heart goes out to you, and I see that you are really doing the best you can to take care of your family.

    You seem like you are heavily affected by what your sister says, but despite her help for your marriage and childbirth, she has no right to command you. You have made the best decision with your husband for your family, and your sister has no part in it. She is an older sister, so I can see that you would have difficulty standing up for yourself, but you have to.

    Keep your conscience clear. You are doing what is best for everyone. You cannot do much more for your sister, since you have responsibilities toward your husband and children. Please don't think that you owe her something more and don't let her get into your head about needing to do more.. Focus on what you must do to help your mother. I think that will steer you in the right direction.
  4. maddysweet

    maddysweet Silver IL'ite

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    Hello Rihana,
    This was a passing cloud. the focus is only on my mom and am normal with my sister.
    The reason for this mess being, she is elder sister and dominating. me being younger sister and try to adjust. Its tough not to react to her comments.
    If my parents or siblings were self sufficient , i would have been selfish and i do get selfish sometimes. But the kind of issues we had were not to be ignored.

    Rihana likes this.
  5. chocolate

    chocolate Platinum IL'ite

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    OP, Your sister is a spoilt brat and knows to push everybody's buttons. Your husband needs respect from your sister and her husband. Your sister is milking her husband's inability to maximum by torturing you. So she arranged your marriage. Don't siblings do it. Okay financial part too you have repaid. She cant hold you hostage for the rest of your life for what she did. She did it you repaid and you are thankful. She is vengeful and rather cunning.

    She herself chose her husband , so why all this dumping on you becoz he is incapable. For right now go to your mom and help her recover. Ask the doctor whether she can come back to US with you after 3 months. If not after 6 bring her to your home only. Stop letting your sister and her husband abuse your husband. Do not tell husband to adjust to her brattish acts. Next time, your BIL abuses your husband or you with or without sister tell them to stop it and you don't want your husband to be abused and neither will u like it. You need to put a stop to your sister's reign of terror.

    I know how it is with money crunch. I know how it is with 100 or less to spend per month on grocery. I have seen it all. After coming back from India stop indulging your sister and her outbursts. She works remotely maybe true. Is her husband an invalid who cant care for his own child. Even if not, that child needs to be polite and helpful by entertaining herself or with cousins when with you. You moving to where she lives maybe biggest blunder. Familiarity breeds contempt. Loosing one income or any income can be nerve wracking.

    After coming back from India you need to work on your marriage too. Apologize to your husband for your sister and BIL behavior and assure him you wont let them do it again without retaliating.Next stop tell your parents not to disclose how much you sent or did to her.Once in a while say no to your sister 's dropping her daughter to you. Go on a holiday with your husband and don't disclose it to your sister until after.If she probes or has her outbursts tell her that you don't like it and walk away.Good Luck.
    sbonigala, NeetaR, vaidehi71 and 2 others like this.
  6. Laks09

    Laks09 Staff Member Finest Post Winner

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    @maddysweet - Even though your hubby says that you are the youngest and don't need to physically be present, he is being reasonable. He's watching the kids while you are in India. He is open to you spending six months in India(three of which he plans to watch your older one alone in the US). I don't think there's much more he can do to help you. You are financially independent and have found ways to help your parents without DH's knowledge. I'm not sure of your equation but if that's how it works then that's what it is. Don't let go of your job and rush to India. You won't be able to help your parents without the financial security. It's not cheap to send two kids to school in India and run a household. Your sister has no idea of the realities in India because she moved to the US 15 years ago. You do need some income to live there and support parents, especially one who is undergoing prolonged medical treatment.
    If I were you I would take turns with my siblings and also take up additional financial expenses because I'm outside the country.
    Don't react to what she says and she will stop it eventually. Do what you have to do. Take care of your mom and be there for her.

    Hope she gets better soon. My prayers for a speedy recovery.
  7. SGBV

    SGBV IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear @maddysweet

    First of all, hugs to you. Relax, and let's hope for a better solution to this mess.

    You seem to be giving way too much importance to your sister's comments, that too at the cost of loosing your sanity, and that of your immediate family. Looks like, you are on a constant battle to prove yourself as the best DD, best sibling; thus voluntarily entered into this never ending competition.
    While you are doing your best, that too at the cost of loosing your marital happiness, your sister is smartly using your weakness.

    It is very very common among siblings to support each other on various degrees. We help each other depending on our affordability, comfortability and above all, because of the love and affection we have on our siblings. This should not be compared or criticized. There should not be any demands or expectations either. It is purely about each others comfort and the willingness - which comes from love.

    It is common that we revisit to those supports, and cherish those helps. Of course there will be some bitter memories, and disappointments too. But we can't help it.

    Having said that, it is pointless to think about what you did for her, and what she did for you in return. There shouldn't be any comparisons at all.

    Think about what you can do and how?
    Think about what are the supports your FOO currently demands from all the 3 siblings of you.

    As suggested by your H, I too think 6 months stay is fair enough.
    If possible, ask your sister to visit by the time you wind up from your mom's place. Then she could try to spend another 4-6 months with mom, providing the same support as you.
    A year from today will be very different. That time if mom's health improves, you could take her to the US, or support her through some distant relative, maid, or paid nurse on a longer run.

    Involve your parents and brother to the discussions and see how best you could help mom.

    No matter what your sister may have to say, don;t compare yourself or your marriage with her. Do what you can do. Feel good about it. You do not need anyone's approval or opinion. Other than you, no one knows what is going on in your life.

    Supporting parents is everyone's job. There is no escape for the younger kids.
    At the same time, supporting parents or extended family should be discussed first with spouse and agreed upon based on humanitarian, and financial background of the family. There may be other concerns too.
    If H is not reasonable, you could try to make him understand your POV.
    But always make sure, that you are being fair to your spouse.
    sindmani and maddysweet like this.
  8. maddysweet

    maddysweet Silver IL'ite

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    Thank u All. Agree with what u say
  9. shwetha12

    shwetha12 Bronze IL'ite

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    I wonder, why parents want to build house with daughters money? when they cant afford. I completely agree if daughters clear necessary loans and take care of parents expenses and medical bills. But ... seems OP mindset have to change from buying love and concentrate more on her kids and own family bonding. Her husband is having right balance.
  10. piano

    piano Bronze IL'ite

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