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Family event with toxic people - advice please?

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Dancingqueen85

New member
Joined
Nov 22, 2019
Messages
3
Location
Wales
So, this evening ibam expected to attend an evening reception for my cousin's wedding. Now, I love this particular cousin to bits and he has given me a hell of a lot of support through my recent MH struggles.

However, this is the first time I am seeing the other members of this side of my family since before I had my depression and anxiety diagnosed. Through therapy, I began to realise that a lot of my anxiety comes from the way my extended family treat me and speak to me. Pretty much like I have next to no intelligence, like I'm still a child and can't comprehend or function as a human being. They are pretty much hyper critical, and after every family event in the past I have found myself withdrawing from everything for days at a time.

My cousin took the time this morning during preparing for his wedding to call me and tell me that he was nervous about today. I get this a lot from friends and some members if my family. They call me to help them cope and get over their anxiousness. I then got a call from his wife to be, (well, wife as of an hour ago) to say that she was nervous enough to not go through with the wedding as she hates how much my family judge people.

I told her that all that matters is her and my cousin. It is their day and if anyone does or says anything to make her feel less than like it is just that, just tell them to [email protected]$* off. She told me that if anyone makes me feel like less than the person and adult I deserve to be treated as then she and my cousin will 100% support me if I tell them to [email protected]$* off too.

My big barrier to standing up for myself is my parents. They understand, but they are very much stuck in their 70+ years of age selves and think that I should keep my mouth shut and bottle it up until I get home. Which I am well aware, isn't healthy for myself.

My question is, what would you do in this situation?

Stay strong. K. Xxx
 
TulipIceCream

TulipIceCream

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 5, 2019
Messages
543
Location
On The Train
I would focus on your cousin and ignore your parents as much as possible. It's their special time, not your parents. If your parents are bothering you, I would walk away. That's what I would do.
 
RicharDragon

RicharDragon

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Joined
Oct 5, 2019
Messages
180
Location
Oregon
Depending on where I was in recovering from the trauma of the family's way I might apologize and take a pass on attending.
I would certainly seek the opinion of council or therapist if one is available because putting myself in a situation not safe for me would be a concern.
If I did go I would focus on the people who matter and those would be the only people who exist ar the event as far as I'm concerned
Best of luck to you and heartfelt congratulations to your cousin :)
 
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Dancingqueen85

New member
Joined
Nov 22, 2019
Messages
3
Location
Wales
Urgh, I may not have explained it properly due to my current anxiety attack which is in full swing. Yay! *cries*

My parent's have taken both of my suicide attempts really seriously, but it wasn't until the last one that they actually came to counselling sessions with me to see that their dismissive approach in public situations with my extended family on both sides wasn't helping me. My mum has recently been diagnosed with bipolar and anorexia after I was asked to give her cardio surgeon and nutritionist my take on her behaviours. I already have 2 degrees, one in psychology and one in business management and HR. So I am well versed in spotting the MH symptoms in others (or I wouldn't be getting paid as much as I am or being head hunted every 12-18 months). I also hold a MH first aid qualification.

I now have an open and honest conversation with both parents once a week so we can all get our worries and stresses out on the table and support each other. It just annoys the hell out of me that that goes out of the window the second my siblings or any other family member are in close proximity.

I'm currently in the midst of a huge anxiety attack cycle (one second I'm shaking and in tears, next I'm in full "stop it and shake it off" resolve - then rinse and repeat) so I apologise if none of this makes much sense right now.

The worst thing is that my boyfriend hasn't been invited and I have no "escape" plan if it all gets too much.

Stay strong. Xxx
 
hicks

hicks

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Joined
May 14, 2019
Messages
1,709
Location
A galaxy, far far away..
Still not seeing any reason why it's in your best interest to attend this event.

I can understand your parents behaviour, because mine do similar with me and my brother. They simply don't want to upset anyone, so the elephant in the room never gets talked about. Which is that we don't get on, and he's fairly competitive with me. I used to come away from encounters with him feeling angry and mentally drained. I decided to knock all that on the head, and haven't seen or spoken with him for 4 years. No loss.
 
hicks

hicks

Well-known member
Joined
May 14, 2019
Messages
1,709
Location
A galaxy, far far away..
Btw you are obviously an intelligent person, and your siblings' behaviour, like mine, could be a way of boosting their own feelings of inferiority by trying to put you down.
 
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