Somehow, I became the black sheep of the family. Me. The one who is living a great life.
I have a brother who is in his 40s and a drug addict. In the past he has stolen money and ruined several jobs over his addiction. He has put the family in some awkward positions over the years. He did little to help raise his daughter. He is divorced. He has a decent job, but is consistently broke due to his alcohol and drug habits. Not the family black sheep.
I have another brother who has 4 kids. He is on his second marriage. This time he married a religious nut, and became over the top with religion. Kids are not allowed halloween celebrations. They will not be allowed to hear about the Easter bunny, or Santa. He relies on our mother to provide daycare free of charge for his kids. She watches them 4 or 5 days a week for 8 hrs or more. He has begun working for the business our father created and our brother took over after his death. He had worked for the family business before, threatened to sue our dad, and he is allowed to come back to the business again. Our brother is basically supporting him and his family, since the business is now his. This is also the brother who insists on conceal and carry of a handgun at all times. He is the reason I will no longer attend family holidays and parties. He refuses to take the gun off his hip. He had cancer, and he gets to do anything he wants without consequences. He is not the black sheep.
My youngest brother is successful. He has good jobs and also took over the family business when our dad died. He dates nice girls, but seems to avoid real commitment. Never married, no children. He supports our mother now that our dad is gone. He lives the furthest away, and handles most things from afar. He wisely keeps some distance to avoid drama. He is doing well, and not the black sheep. He is the golden boy.
Then there is me. Married for 14 yrs. I am a stay at home mom, so I never needed a consistent babysitter for my kids. I am able to raise them myself. For this, we are punished. Apparently, I am supposed to NEED the help of my mother…and I am independent and ruining her plan. We own our own house. My husband has a wonderful job. We are financially stable. Another reason we are punished. Stability. We aren’t a chaotic needy mess. Apparently, in our family that isn’t allowed. We fostered children for many years and eventually adopted. Of course, to our face they will say this is wonderful. Yet, nobody remembers their birthdays. I still hear talk of “blood” being family first. I am offended with their lack of interest. But, I am the black sheep. Punished for being a good parent, being financially stable, and having a successful marriage.
Today my family would celebrate Thanksgiving. We always celebrated the Saturday after Thanksgiving.
I feel a bit on edge today, knowing my brothers are all celebrating with my mom. I know I am discussed as the bad egg. Simply because I don’t show up.
Since my brother refused to remove his gun and put it in the car, my family hasn’t participated in family events. At the time, my kids were not legally adopted yet. State laws said they could not be in the presence of weapons. His wife insisted I was lying and then said I was fostering my kids for money.
Anyone who knows about foster care would be boiling over at such a statement.
My parents wouldn’t ask them to leave. My family had to go instead.
So…we are the black sheep.
I missed years of holiday get togethers while my dad was alive. I have now missed 2 years of them since he has died.
I struggle knowing they are all together, with me excluded. I struggle that I missed that time with my dad while he was here.
I always thought we were a close family. And now, we barely speak.
I feel strongly that I am making good choices for my family. But, that doesn’t mean the choices don’t hurt sometimes.
Holidays kind of suck.