I’ve been VERY good at disengaging from one Adult SKID and DIL and mildly detached from other SKID. The backstory is I raised these kids, very stable home, generous with them, and loving but I never got treated very well in return or had the love reciprocated. These kids are not monsters and it isn’t as black and white as some of the situations on here. It’s grayer.
Anyways I finally disengaged from one SKID and his DIL after the last 3 years of poor treatment, no acknowledgement about going above and beyond (credit given to DH whom had nothing to do with achieving their wedding demands) and everything was amplified by SKID’s DIL whom has a lot of family drama. I was painted as evil – I would walk into her family’s gathering to assist or show up and met with glares and extremely unwelcoming behavior (at one point the DIL and her family turned their backs to me and DH as I was waving hello and I was verbally “put in my place” by DIL’s mother which I bit my tongue NOT because it was at all truthful- just simply shock at the behavior and this happened in my house.) The behavior by this SKID and DIL is NOT warranted, but I do know there are a lot of “stories” that were propagated and my SKID backed these stories up without a lot of fact or truth behind them. After a miserable “coming together” dinner a year ago where we attempted to smooth things out, they went on and on and on about “how I have failed them and failed as a parent” even recounting their own failures as my responsibility. After that I not only paid for the dinner but I gave them a hug (I can’t even explain WHY I did that…) and got in my car and left. After that I created a boundary that I would not do anything out of the ordinary for them moving forward and since I have made ZERO effort to see them- which I have remained committed to and as hard as it is because my nature is to be very giving and generous, I have stuck to my guns. They have also made zero effort except to reach out on text which I will respond to but only with a short “thank you” or “hello.” Nothing more. The year without them in my life has been fantastic- free of family stress, drama, and behavior issues.
So let’s get to the odd part- I moved very far away with DH. We’ve built a fun life together and are happy. This year DH tells me he wants both SKIDs to come to a holiday. Of course, I do not want this with the one troubled SKID that I have disengaged with over the year but if we allow the other SKID to come that looks like we are shunning the troubled one. I will also note that troubled SKID hasn’t done anything so horrific (hasn’t tried to ruin my career, physically beat me, etc) the abuse and behavior is more subtle so I don’t have a black/white excuse of my life being in danger or threatening my livelihood. Trying to find a way to keep boundaries in place. I tell my DH fine. No way in HELL did I think troubled SKID would come. DH reaches out to SKID and tells the SKID to come to Thanksgiving with DIL. Yesterday, I find out SKID is coming and with his DIL. Wild since they haven’t both been to a holiday for at least 4 years.
Once I found this out I am already putting the breaks on having them stay at the house and I am willing to pay for a hotel to keep them at some sort of distance. I found myself thinking through where everyone sits at the table and making sure they are on the other side from me with many other bodies in between us to avoid having to dialogue. I am not scared of them but I don’t love the idea of having to interact at all. Nothing good will come of it – there mind is made up that I am horrible, whether justified or not. And I am simply not interested in this bizarre dynamic.
I suspect they are going to show up extremely grateful towards my DH and shower him with love. I also suspect they will act “nice” to me and put on a bit of a show. I frankly am past it all and don’t want to re-engage a relationship. I don’t miss them – likely because I realized how unfairly I have been treated. And I also am keenly aware that I am still the dumping ground for their problems and issues with DH.
I take full responsibility for allowing this occasion to happen by saying “fine.” Any suggestions on what you’ve done when placed in a position of being disengaged with an adult SKID but having to have an encounter? Tricks and ways you have avoided them at holidays or other occasions. Any advice, stories and insight is warmly welcomed.