4 January 2011

This is not how I wanted to start 2011...

I really wanted a nice peaceful New Year, but alas, the Lord has different plans for me.

So last night I was dealing with my own family drama. I was texting and e-mailing my cousins to get the full story since my mother doesn't want to tell me anything. She pretends to be in the dark, but after discussing, at length with my cousin V (the one who spoke to my younger cousin NR, who by the way is not sexually active. Thank the Lord for that! Apparently a "friend" added the offending item to her list on her i.Touch and she hasn't even been kissed.) to get the lowdown. 

What it boils down to is money issues. Two of my mother's sisters lent money to a cousin in the homeland and my uncle (who is married to one of the aunts that lent the money) wants to see a bigger return for the loan. The cousin that the money was lent to has started up a business that has taken off and it seems like my uncle is getting greedy. There's also the issue of one of my unmarried aunts who is not being treated very well by another aunt and uncle. It's a mess and my mom and dad are caught in the middle because they have lent money to family members too. To make a long and confusing story short, my family is feuding and it makes me sad. My mom always tries to protect me from the drama which is all in good, but I'm an adult and I shouldn't have to go to my much younger cousins for information! 

This morning I told Mr. JB that I wanted to address his brother's concern regarding our marriage. I was already riled up because of my family and I just wanted to get my side of the story heard. In my opinion I am being blamed for all of the issues. My BIL's issue with my making all of the decisions and Mr. JB doing all of the work is so off base so I wanted to let him know my side. What I didn't know is that Mr. JB has already e-mailed his brother to tell him that he is wrong. Mr. JB did mention our IF issues to him (since he omitted them from his first e-mail) and my BIL accused us of putting ourselves in a cone of silence.


I don't have a cone of silence! I have a freaking blog! 

So what if I don't talk to a celibate priest about my IF issues. So what if I don't bring it up at the dinner table. It's my issue and I don't think that I need to talk about it all the time. 

Mr. JB and I have an open dialogue about IF. I have friends that I talk to, IRL and on the internet. 

So girls, I'm seething. What do you think I should do? Should I e-mail him myself or let this one go? 

If not, I'm heading to Italy on the first plane to punch him out!!! 


  1. Money and family is never a good combination. Did your uncle have a written agreement for his loan? If so, as long as he returned the money as promised with whatever interest was agreed upon, I think it shouldn't matter how well his business did. Of course, if it were us, we'd probably include a little "bonus" just to thank the lenders...but that's just us.
    We've borrowed money from family ONCE in our lives - from my dad for the closing costs on our house. We paid him back within 6 months. And I really don't want to ever borrow money from friends or family ever again! (Which makes this asking for help with adoption thing that much harder.)
    I'm sorry your BIL is being ridiculous. Because he is...completely. Your and your husband's marriage is between you and your husband...and God. Your family doesn't have the right to information from you just because they are your family, and they certainly don't have any right to judge your relationship with each other.
    I would call him out on it directly, because he's obviously been judging you and possibly even talking to other family members about it.
    One thing I have to remember about my brother is that JUST because he is a priest DOES NOT mean that he is always right. Far from it.
    Glad to hear your young cousin isn't having sex!

  2. Well, the bit about your cousin is a relief. Hope no one leaned on her too hard for info because we have all had that "friend" at one point in our lives or another who just doesn't get what kind of humor is appropriate, and I imagine the whole thing may have been embarrassing for her.

    The BIL thing is rough, and I think you made a really interesting point about his facing changed personal circumstances and maybe struggling a bit himself at the moment. My 2 euro cents :) - feel free to leave it - is that you are perfectly free to tell them all (firmly but lovingly :)!) that it would not be good for your marriage (and therefore not good period) for you to share everything going on in your relationship with your immediate family, therefore, they are never going to be in a position to accurately evaluate the health of your relationship and that is as it should be. They have jobs as loving supportive family members, but this ain't it. Then you may just have to deal with them talking, which stinks, but there ya go.

  3. I think I would leave it alone..it has gotten way out of hand. Over time when you don't retaliate or speak or whatever about this with him he will have to think about it and realize that at the end of the day it is none of his business. Why should you even waste your breath on explaining to him about your IF issues? the only person you need to discuss this with is your husband. Anyhow he is luckily living very far from the both of you..which is fantastic.

  4. I’ll chip in on the plane ticket!

    I would say something to shut down the entire conversation, but not directly in response to his allegations. You do not need to defend your marriage or how you deal with your IF struggles to him and if you respond directly, I’m afraid that’s what you would be doing. I would probably write something along the lines of: We appreciate your concern, but are confidant and comfortable with how we’ve handled this personal matter (or your marriage or whatever else you want to add). I would probably also remind him that your decisions are being led by prayerful hearts. I think some people forget that the same God who is leading and listening to them is also leading and listening to you. But again, my point would be to shut down this line of conversation (without being completely ugly and causing decade-long family strife) because I honestly cannot see this going anywhere good.

    Well, 2011 can only go up from here, right?

  5. It sounds like your husband is taking care of the BIL...nice job, Mr. JB! BIL obviously has some "issues" with you, so let your husband defend you (like he is doing so nicely already). Whatever you say is going to get twisted and make you look like an over-powering control freak that he already thinks you are. Mr. JB's got this. You just relax. Can you get a New Year's do-over?

  6. Sorry about the family drama. I agree with callmemama and expatbarreness about dealing with BIL.

  7. Good that your DH already talked to him - easier for him to have it out with his brother, I'd say. And what a relief about your cousin - but, the poor girl! Given the outcome, there's sort of a tragicomic aspect to it. I agree with callmemama - money and family are never a good combination. And if your uncle is looking for a percentage of profits (as if he were an investor rather than a lender - investors have no promise that they will ever get their investment back if things go poorly), well, unless he has that in writing, good luck.

    WRT the BIL - I would play the God card. "Consistent with the graces granted to us through the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony, Mr. JB and I have prayerfully considered and discerned God's will with respect to all of the important decisions in our marriage, including how to address our infertility and the nature of the support we should seek from friends and family. We will continue to seek and follow God's will in this and other matters in our lives, and we appreciate your prayers for our discernment." Or, in other words: screw you.

  8. Hmm - let's hope all the negative drama for 2011 gets squeezed in now, leaving room only for good exciting things in 2011?

    I wonder what BIL is getting out of this exchange - feeling involved? getting attention? getting absorbed in something other than his own life? Maybe if you have this in mind you can figure out how to shut down this line of conversation while still maintaining a relationship. Perhaps there's a way to maintain a connection and email dialogue about something else (people love talking about themselves, can you get him talking about himself instead?) - this way he'd still feel connected/involved but OUT of your business. Of course it is NOT your job to make him feel better, he may be the kind of person you just have to avoid if he's poisoning your life. But if you do actually want to keep in touch yet to set limits ...?

    The trick is to write something honest, not offensive (unless you want to offend, of course!) and that will establish a tone you want to continue. Ex. "I was really touched to learn of your concern for us (yes, I felt like I wanted to wring your neck! - oops don't write in that part). We face life's challenges together, with the help of God, family and friends. I know you will understand that some things we discuss just between the two of us, or perhaps with one or two close friends. As you have demonstrated such concern for us, I know you want the best for us and will support us in making the decisions that we believe are best for us.

    (next paragraph - ask him some questions about his life, base off anything you can, just get the focus switched to HIM instead of you. In future communications, maybe just don't answer any questions you don't want to, but keep the focus on him).

    Of course you may prefer to cut him out entirely, in which case you'll save yourself a lot of typing!!!

  9. How frustrating!! Sorry you are having to deal with this on top of everything else.

  10. Phew, tons of drama! I feel for ya, I've been there now I just let dh handle it all when it comes to his family. I do think that writing an email from your POV would help, because at least you have a chance to defend yourself.

  11. Your business, you do what you want about your infertility, IT'S YOUR MARRIAGE!. And he gets to have an opinion on your marriage, when he joins it (also know as never).

    I would email him and if he doesn't apologize and get in line, your husband should stop communicating with him. Your a team, and if your BIL doesn't support the team, then he can't communicate with the players. I know, not easy, but being so mean to you is just not acceptable and Mr. JB has to lay down the law.