Sister Model

A few years ago (before I joined Scholars), I essentially ended the relationship I had with my sister.

During our entire adult life (about 15 years), she would regularly say abusive words to me and sometimes physically hurt me. She’s struggled with drugs and alcohol. The ups were good (really loving her and being grateful for her), but the downs were horrific (terrified to be around her, constantly walking on eggshells).

After yet another episode (for lack of a better word), we agreed that if she treated me that way again, we wouldn’t continue a relationship. (She would always have lots of remorse and be very apologetic, then do the exact same thing again, sometimes even worse).

In the months leading up to my wedding, her behavior got worse and worse to the point of explosion, and physically and verbally attacking me at my bachelorette party. She told me she didn’t want to come to my wedding either.

A few days later, she was very apologetic, and said she wanted to come to the wedding. I told her I accepted her apology, but I didn’t want her at the wedding. She didn’t come and we haven’t talked since.

Honestly? I am completely at peace. I don’t miss her, I rarely think of her. I love her like you love an old friend from childhood but have no interest in rekindling a relationship with. I truly want her to be well and happy and flourish – I just don’t want to be apart of it.

I’m not mad at her and I have empathy for her.

It’s been almost four years, and as I expected, my brother and mother have started to try to get me to have a relationship with her again. They say words (“She’s your sister. She’s family”). I know it’s their opinion and it is just their thoughts.

I don’t get upset with them because I understand what they are trying to do and where they are coming from.

I guess my problem is – I don’t know what to tell them. They don’t believe I’m not mad. They think I’m trying to punish her. I know that they will think whatever they want and I can’t make them think anything. Do I just get comfortable with them not understanding and judging my decision to not currently want a relationship with her?