Well I am almost 44 & Just learning today....

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by DavidH, Mar 17, 2008.

  1. DavidH

    DavidH Guest

    I can not count on anyone

    I have all my life ALWAYS been there for whom ever needs anything... no matter what the cost to me in time effort or pain even $ if I could.

    I am very close to my younger brother... and have for past few years been noticing his "detaching" from me...

    He dislikes Justin that is very clear I once heard "because of what Justin has done to my brother" is his reason for his dislike of my Son, his nephew and only one he knows.

    He got remarried a couple of years ago and the distance was becoming even more clear... he is all about his new family, no or forced (his own guilt) communication with my (our mom) and I.

    Mom asked for his help on looking for a new car, maybe helping her buy one (he makes almost 200K a year) he is not even helping her look for one... been months so I told her I would help... to no avail at this point she is not rich and I just got back to work, but will pitch in what I can.

    I have been asking his help for months to help me with something I have to finish by this week, or I pay a huge fine and I mean HUGE fines (for investments I made years ago) (he is in financial field and understands this stuff.

    He tells me yes he will help and tells me to call and come over, and when I call it goes to voice mail... even if I leave a message I do not hear anything for a couple of days, and he always says "I thought you were going to call me" !!!!!!!

    Well he is moving out of his 500K home he and new wife are spliting up house is on the market (good luck bud great timing) he calls and ask me to help him move into an apt, she will stay in house till it sells... I say sure of course...

    I call a few days later and say once more please you think you can help me on this issue I have, I have to do it now or else...

    He says yea... Sunday.. ok cool, he will call me when he gets up.... I wait all day he calls me at 6pm, hey David come on over I will help.. I say ok it is late but I will remember this is going to take us hours to do, let me call you right back, have to finish with my Boss on other cell... 20 mins later I call... No answer, left voice mail

    This am he calls about 11.30 am says why did you not call back last night -- I simply say I did look at your cell and voice mail

    I ask again, I have to do this today ... can you help... he says yea let me call you back ... it is 8.30 tonight now and no call

    I am done, I can no longer be the one for everyone... I am tired of being the one that will do anything... I hate it but it is what it is... I hate humans... and the ones with the same blood as me should be not in that same boat... I hate being rude or saying no... but hey... my answer to help you move? N O !!!!

    I placed an ad on Craigslist to find helpers for him I got about 8 responces of guys willing to help (for $$ of course) (his cost not mine) and I simply forwarded the emails and phone numbers of each to him.

    When he calls again I will simply not answer the phone

    so sad
  2. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    It is sad but you are giving him permission to take advantage of you. Simply say you are busy. It's not your job to fix everyone in the family. If mom can't afford a car then maybe she needs a different option.
  3. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    It's a hard lesson to learn, David.
    If you just get on with things and don't complain about how hard they are, then people assume that whatever it is, is "easy" for you, much easier than it is for them. And because it's so easy for you, well you have the time and scope to help with their issues too.

    If you're always there for people, then they'll assume that you'll always be there, and furthermore, that you don't ever need them to be there for you.

    I agree with you, that it's time to say no.

    The other thing is, when you start valuing your own time and energy, others will follow suit.

    Hard lesson to learn, no matter when you learn it.

  4. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    Hey David, I used to be like you and then I learned the magic word "no" and I learned how to say and feel it without anger or resentment or feeling bad.

    I had to learn to value my time and realize that I can't be everything to everyone. I used to help my loco sister all the time, I can't even tell you how many times I picked up or drove her kids to their private schools but on a snow day when I asked if she could take my girls, she'd respond with, "Ohhhh, I'm going to have to take a pass"....Take a Pass?? WTH?

    Anyway, David, do you value your worth, your time? Out of the goodness of your heart, you feel good when you help someone. But after a while, you feel taken advantage of. It takes practice, but learn where that fine line is and do not cross it. Give, help, that's fine - but don't give so much of yourself that you can't help yourself.

    Fran's right about your mom and her new car - if she can't afford a new car, then she needs to come up with a plan that suits her financial situation. It's not up to you (or your brother) to provide her with a new car. With the money you would have donated to mom's car, go see a financial consultant to help you with your problem you've been waiting for your brother to help with.

    Incidentally, listing an ad for helpers for your brother is also not your job. He didn't ask you to do that. All you have to do is tell him there's been a change in plans and you will no longer be able to help him. Give him decent notice, however, because that's what you would expect from him.

    The thing is, by not giving too much of yourself you are taking care of you...Behave as you would like to be treated without being taken advantage of.

    Sending many gentle hugs~
  5. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    It's a hard life lesson to learn.

    I used to be the one who was always there, always helping no matter what. Took many years to see that for most of the people I was doing this for it was awfully one-sided. And everytime I needed anything there were usually excuses to be made instead of help given.

    I had to actually try hard not to let it make me bitter. Afterall, I did the things I did because I wanted to do it. No one forced me. It was their taking advantage that started to get to me, and never being willing to help me out if I needed it.

    I still help those who also help me out if and when they can. I still help those I really think need it, even if they'll never be able to return the favor. But the word NO has become a big word in my vocabulary these days. And I've found the more I use it, the easier it is to use.

  6. DavidH

    DavidH Guest

    this one is a hard one for me...

    I have never used NO before...

    and now.. past hour he has called three times I simply can not answer ...

    it is not his issue (in regards to me needing help and today being last day) it is my fault I put it off for a long time ...

    but but but... I guess there is none .. just vey disapointed in it all ---

    he has changed.. sad thing is now that he is leaving her he will reach out to me again being he will be alone....

    I think it is time to just detach from him... times change relationships change... I hear about it... now I will be living it... and it rotts... I will be fine.. I just think it rotts... did I say it rotts.. I love this guy so much darn it
  7. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    {{{David}}} For now, you do what you can to preserve your own peace. It doesn't mean you have to detach forever - but perhaps just for now, you know?
  8. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    I would certainly stick to your guns on the "no" thing. YOu have a financial issue to work out and you need to spend time on that. You can't help brother move. Done deal.

    However, when he gets out and settled and the dust settles for a few, maybe some healing can begin on your relationship. Maybe a frank discussion (and your new-found boundaries) can move you guys forward in positive light.

    Good luck. I'm sorry its hard right now.
  9. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    David.........I totally understand. My sister and I used to fight over things as well. She had so many "issues" with me, my son, life. I always felt like I was the one reaching out, and that she was more distant and angry. However, we were sisters, and despite how angry we might get at each other, we always came back to talking, caring, and loving each other.

    Thankfully, at some point in life, we both decided that it did not matter how much we were different, or how we disagreed, or that we both had resentment about things. Instead we decided to talk about the things we agreed on - and accept the things we did not like about each other - and to have unconditional love for each other.

    She died a month ago, suddenly and without warning at age 37. Had we not always reached out to each other, over and over again to try and make things right - and had we not finally succeeded in consistently showing each other our love - this tragedy would have been compounded exponentially for me.

    I hope that you and your brother sit down and talk this through, remembering that you are brothers, and you may not ever agree, but knowing that the two of you are important enough to each other that you are determined to have resolve. Siblings are worth the blood, the sweat, and the tears. Every single ounce of it.
  10. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member

    I think you were too kind even putting the ad on Craigslist for him. Let him feel the sting of you not answering his calls for a while.
  11. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    I just had a thought David, and I wonder if it might help you with this.

    When someone asks me a favour, I tend to think in terms of "billable hours". In other words, if I value my time at ? per hour, and this favour will take me 4 hours to do, then it works out to 4x?. Then I ask myself a few other questions:
    - Is this person sufficiently valuable to me that I'm willing to give away that much time (money)?
    - Does this person give me his or her time (money) when I am in need, willingly?
    - Is the thing that they want me to do sufficiently important that it's worth my giving up my plans for the time

    Now here's the key. When you figure out what your time is worth to you, make sure that you value yourself highly, the way you deserve to be valued.

    Just for the sake of argument, let's use $70 per hour. Your time is valuable, because YOU are valuable.

    So...your brother wants you to help him find a place, and more than likely to organize the moving truck and help him to move. How much time is that likely to take? Say 24 hours total. So...24 hours at $70 per hour is $1680.

    Would you spend $1680 of your hard-earned money to do this for someone who has shown himself unwilling to help you with skills and knowledge he has when you need help?

    Now, you don't need to explain this to any one. It probably won't make sense to them. But it's just something I do inside my head so that I can tell the difference between doing a favour for someone, and letting them impose on me.

    I think Witz said it in another post, a while ago: " 'No' is a complete sentence."

    by the way, I agree that even posting a listing on Craigslist was too kind. You need to detach and let him fend for himself. It will be good for him, AND it will teach him to respect you.

  12. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    DAVID! I'm sooooo mad at you! (kidding!) What do you mean you can't count on anybody? You can count on us! lol

    Listen: I'm going through the wringer with Psycho Sis and all the other stuff and DON'T THINK I'm sticking up for your brother BUT:

    He's been married for many moons and guys usually end up somewhat distancing themselves from family (to a degree). (Don't want to get in trouble for stark generalizations!).

    5 Bucks says that if he's sort of "detached" over the years of his marriage it's because he's sort of a "dip". You know, one of those people who's wife takes care of that stuff. Usually it's not mean or even thought out, just ignorant and forgetful.

    I also have to stick in here that if he's a numbers cruncher, stereotypically he won't have much sense on the "human" aspects in life.

    Me? I wouldn't take it personally. I'd go to his new apartment tonight with a pizza and my paperwork and make him fix whatever needs fixing before it costs you a fortune.

    THEN pick and choose how much or how little you want to detach!

    Good luck!