Grief and anger (all the fun stuff) =)

Hi Brooke…

It’s one of those Sundays where all my emotions are coming up! In the past I used to push my emotions away, but I had a good cry for about an hour, and am learning to process my feelings (thanks to you!) so I figure, might as well go full-throttle and ask you a question here.

So my sister was depressed and took her own life 10 years ago. I’ve been working on changing my past and creating a new story for the way that her death unfolded and what I’ve made it mean in my own life.

Since her death, my mother hasn’t ever asked how I’m doing. I guess my manual for her is that she would know to ask a question like that to her daughter, but she doesn’t or/and hasn’t.

I realize that I’ve had a tonnnnn of anger towards her for years. At one point I took her to my therapist to talk through things (which was helpful and I think allowed her to see things from my perspective, which I think was helpful for her too). I’m getting married in a few months and realize that I have all of this built up anger again: my mom wants my sister represented a certain way at the wedding, and hasn’t asked me what I think about the way she wants her represented (which I guess should be no surprise to me).

Basically what I’m struggling with is a question: if taking her to my therapist was helpful the first time, and I’m experiencing a ton of anger towards her now, is it ok to do that again? Be in a room with her and my therapist where I’m going to be expressing a ton of anger and frustration (I’m guessing). OR….am I just supposed to be working exclusively on accepting her for who she is? And loving her for who she is? I understand the idea of taking ownership for my feelings, and also how much EASIER it would be just to know and believe that she’s my mother who doesn’t ask me about my grief or desires and that that’s ok. But on the other hand, my brain is telling me that I need her to hear how angry I’ve been with her. In all honestly, she probably has no idea.

I think PART of what I just need is a refresher on the concept of acceptance vs. when you tell someone “if you do _____, then I will____ (like showing someone how to treat you). Would love to hear your thoughts. Thank you.