". . . our stories are what make the difference, and if we can tell them honestly we can hope to help each other. In the end, we have nothing to offer each other but our stories." ~ Emma Lou Thayne

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Venting... Ranting... Whatever will get the YUCK OUT!

Due to those that hide behind anonymous status and feel that I am not worthy of having emotions and feelings... and don't believe THE following original statement to be a clue that it was what I was stating it to be (a rant to blow some steam...) and also take things out of context and blow even things within said "rant/vent" out of proportion, and escalate the whole thing into a bigger deal... further injuring my psyche... and helping me to realize how much I REALLY DO SUCK, thank you... 

"WARNING: This is a RANT! I need to vent a bit so I can continue to PRETEND that I keep turning the other cheek to be slapped some more... As YOU can see, I'm TRULY NOT so NOBLE!! But if I don't let some steam OUT... I may BLOW!! If I am successful, than I can post the NICE stuff about this visit early next week.... *sigh*"

"Today was NOT supposed to be this, either!! I planned on a beautiful array of images and talking about Trek to commemorate Pioneer Day here in UTAH!! Well, once again it's getting BUMPED! And WHAT a day to BUMP it! Don't you think it should have priority over my need to vent so I don't explode at the family I DO love but are driving me CRAZY??? Don't get me wrong, they are not all involved in the shenanigans that gets played... a small minority. Isn't that what usually causes all the grief in the world?? A SMALL MINORITY?? ;p"

"But don't we PAINT a PRETTY picture?? If you look at any family and think how perfect it must be to live in that family... I BET you're overlooking something you are clueless of!!"

Which is of COURSE, ME... I'm clearly the most difficult person to be around and should be at the top of the human extinction list... There ARE many moments in time I wish I weren't alive... NOW being one of them...

***UPDATE for clarification***
The "MY TURN" comment was referring to MY turn with hubby... NOT as the mother to her children... I KNOW they have a mother and I have NEVER TRIED to take her place... I couldn't if I WANTED to. And if any of them read this, they can't deny that I haven't tried to replace her... or make them forget her...

So I guess I am heartless and selfish and certainly shouldn't have my own feelings and emotions about any of it. I shouldn't expect my home to be my safe haven. 

If you care to know about bipolar and the emotional roller-coaster ride it can take you on, there are links in my sidebar that will spell it all out. Those of you that actually know me would be pretty proud at how much I hold back, suck up, and pretend isn't an issue.  

However, there are those that like to pretend it isn't real... so it's all in my head and I'm just whacked. OK... 

  • Or that you can decide not to have it anymore and it will go away because you only have it because you are weak... Please, Wizard of OZ, hypnotize me so I can be cured.
FYI: In the future there will no longer be ANONYMOUS comments allowed. I welcome comments, but if you feel the need to hide behind anonymous so I can't even have a clue who's throwing the darts at me, well, you'll have to do better than that.


One Cluttered Brain said...

I am sorry you are having a tough time with your family right now. For the record, i think you take beautiful pictures...
You had a food spread for 32 people today and they snubbed that?
More food for you then?
I am truly sorry.

I hope the venting helped. It ALWAYS helps me!!!

And YAY! You made it past 100 followers!! You are big time now!!!

(I am trying to make U feel better) :D
PS I sold my highchair for 80 bucks. Finally, Right?

T said...

now - go to your computer (oh wait, you're already there... silly me) print out this post in its entirety - pictures and all.

rip the printout into as many tiny teeny pieces as your heart desires. Feel free to print and repeat as necessary

but wait, you're not done.

find a nice fire proof container and a match - because you're not going to feel better until all of those pieces are making a nice mini-bonfire.

and don't forget to take pictures of the process... it will make a great blog post!

Lisa said...

Oh, Holly. Sucks, doesn't it? Stupid sons o' beaches. Well, here's what I think. No need to hang a portrait that will remind you day after day about disrespectful step-children and feeling less than. Hang a portrait of Christ, instead. And when they ask where the picture went, laugh and shake your head and just walk away...all the while mumbling "Bless your heart." That ought to do it.

Sometimes the best you can do is step back into the shadows and watch the interactions. Sometimes we find that it's not us~that actually they treat everybody that way. In fact, if they're willing to treat their father's wife this way, I would imagine this is habitual and part of their character. Not personal to you.

Thinking of you. Go ahead and vent all you want. Then retreat into your bedroom with a good book and a cold drink and know that they'll be gone soon. Probably not soon enough...but soon. :)

Jules said...

My my, what a day. Well anyone who can even try to cook for 32 people in my book is wonderful.

You go ahead and vent, should we call the Blog Mafia for ya?

PS I like the Christ picture idea.

Java said...

It is really hard when our kids grow up and have their own families and then when everyone gets together there's bound to be conflicts...yes you asked them to wear certain things for the picture and they didn't..but that only shows the true characters of those that didn't match...pictures tell a 1000 words!
Don't stress so much...if they didn't like the food then they can go elsewhere...I don't know too many that can cook for 32! Wow you deserve an award for that! They should be grateful but they aren't...they are the one's that look bad..not you. Hold your head high and know that you did your best...and you are the best!


Holly said...

Actually, majority of them LOVED the food.

The oldest, his wife and their 3 can never have anything genuinely good to say. And he's the one that always instigates the separate pictures and refuses to be in a picture with ME unless HIS wife is in it, too... So it doesn't matter if it's something for his DAD. Then he always makes a big deal out of saying THANK YOU to me for "letting" them gather at our home... as if I'd tell my husband, "No, your kids can't come here... they're not welcome..." Maybe next time HE wants to come with HIS family I should say NO... Hubby, the ULTIMATE patient peacemaker would never go along. But I think that's what bugging me most. I think I WANT HIM to BE MY CHAMPION and tell him if they can't be respectful to ME in OUR home, they're NOT WELCOME! *sigh* The REST of them are FINE!! I guess when you know your wife is a closet LOONY TUNE... you just try to smooth things over and pretend that everything is fine.

I will surely miss all of the ones leaving for home out-of-state. We don't see near enough of them. And the ones that do give a darn come around for more reasons than just to swim in the pool...

Thanks everybody for the support!! What would I do without you?? ((HUGS))

Southern Mitzi said...

wow! I am blown away by this. I can not imagine what you are feeling right now because I have never had step children. My husband is a step dad however, and it has always been very important to me that my children are accepting of him.

I do remember when my children's dad re-married. They were not so accepting of his new wife. They felt like she was trying to replace their mom and they were having none of it. (then again, they were children, not adults) It says a lot about adult children who cannot bring themselves to act like adults and be glad that their father found happiness instead of trying to ruin it all.

While things did not go the way you had planned, I have come to discover that they usually never do. The pyramid photo is actually kind of cute. Though it is not what you wanted, you could indeed be the bigger person and send a subtle message to them by putting it up in your living room. A gesture that says even though they insist on treating you that way, you are better than that.

Just a thought...

Holly said...

Mitzi, this post: GREAT Mom Moments has the original pyramid in 2001. Problem isn't the pyramid pic. We like to do hubby & I WITH all 10. The oldest has this thing of not wanting to be in a picture with me without his wife, because I'm just his dad's WIFE and not part of HIS core family. He's 38 years old for crying out loud. This isn't FOR HIM, it's for his DAD. He doesn't need to display it in HIS home. This is OUR FAMILY. WE don't want to segregate them on OUR wall. We do a portrait over the mantle with EVERYONE & 1 of us & the 10 kids over the TV. The 1 we have from 2006 is poor quality & we were looking forward to updating it. Didn't happen. SO, it will STAY until it is updated. I'll gladly print an 8x10 for each & put it in our office. They also proceeded to do the 6 standing in order (the way we do Us & the 10, excluding my 4 & 1 of them with their spouses, excluding my oldest & hers. The oldest being an instigator; wanting his way or no way. When I'd had enough I handed the camera to hubby & walked away rather than making it worse. HIS mother asked them (her 6) to be supportive of hubby remarrying before she died. You'd think he'd want to honor his mother & be the EXAMPLE!
Inside, I'm hurt by HIM (& his family)repeatedly. I've never openly made an issue out of it. When overwhelmed, I hide & cry alone. Hubby wants everyone to get along. He's the ultimate optimist & doesn't see most of what goes on. The others are quite supportive & I truly love them!! When I settle from the hurt, I'll be doing the post on ALL the FUN that WAS had for our little reunion. PROMISE!

Holly said...

Sorry if this kept sending notices to everyone. It kept telling me it was too long to process, so I kept cutting it down... then they ALL showed up. LOL!! *sigh*

Tim said...

Forgive me for being somewhat observant, but it doesn't look like many of your children and spouses followed your "picture dress standard". Maybe some of them never got the memo. The couple with the dog are not in the pyramid picture. So I would have to assume that your biological son or daughter did not get the memo either.

As for two families coming together to make one, I think that's AWESOME. As for who is "biological" and who is "Blood" related, WHO CARES!, you are one big family now and that is the only thing that matters. You can't tell me that you got along with your family, all the time, every day of your life. I know I can't. But I still love them. Now more than ever.

Always treat others the way you want to be treated. If someone disrespects your cooking the canker is theirs to fester, not yours.

Now I have one rebuke! "Oh WAIT... NO... then SHE'LL be THERE... The Demi-God that is so high on a pedestal that no one can touch her... The one I will NEVER live up to..." If this is refering to a deceased mother to "the 6" children in the pyramid I will agree with you about you being selfish. You will never REPLACE their Mother. But, my guess is they don't need a replacement. They need a loving Wife to their Father who also knows the role of a mother.

Now about the "goofball". I think it's great. Everytime someone looks at a very wonderfull photo of a beautifull family, regardless of their issues, they will coment about the goofball with the Buford Tannen mustache(Back to the future III). They will start telling you about the goofball in their family and the pranks he's pulled. We all have one, don't kid yourself.

I feel like I'm ranting about the rant so I'll finish with this..."Never rub another man's rhubarb"(The Joker 1989).

Friendly Observer said...

I think Tim's last comment is on the money. You don't need to replace "her" and you shouldn't be compelled to try. Given most of the 6 kids were teens or adult when she passed, you would be hard pressed to supplant the "mom" role under the best of conditions. If that is the relationship you desire with "the 6", you are fighting a loosing battle.

Coming from a broken home (I was 10) with step parents on either side, I think it's unrealistic to expect to take on the role of "mom" or "dad" in the children's eyes. Try to establish the relationship based on who you are and what you bring to the table. Don't worry about how you measure up, just be you. So long as you make the hubby happy and you are kind to and supportive of the children, there isn't really anything more to ask of you.

Sometimes things don't go the way you hope and you just have to pick out the good stuff to think about. If you get stuck thinking about a negative and let it dig a rut, the crazies will put you in a downward spiral. Then you will eventually get to a point where you are bound to need a release (for instance the venting blog). That then leads to more drama and anxiety between family members. Don't let a negative event snowball, sometimes forgetting IS the best policy.

Sometimes this type of situation starts with anxiety about how you are being perceived by others that complicates a negative experience. The thing about that is, usually it's unnecessary. Refocus on the good and let the bad slide. Does it matter 5 minutes from now or 5 hours from now? 5 days or 5 months from now? In most cases the anxiety is futile. If you do struggle with anxiety you might find the book: Is Your Balloon About to Pop by Bob Kamath relevant. I've had several friends tell me they enjoyed it.

In regards to the family picture, you must realize that they are individuals and have their own desires and needs too. Perhaps they didn't get the memo, perhaps they didn't get laundry done in time, maybe they are just a rebel. Don't get upset, work with what you got. If your artistic need required they be uniform why not provide said uniforms at that time. Some perhaps didn't have time or money to "prepare" for this event or didn't realize it was that big of a thing for you. As to the goober with a mustache, sometimes a little flavor is a good thing. Why do you let a lack of uniformity bother you so? It seems to me that everybody had a good time....except you. Enjoy life, try not to get bogged down by a bad experience.

As a side note, it also seems like you hold a grudge against "the golden boy" from some other experience. Don't let crap from the past fly up and mess up your future, try and work through it for everybody involved. Like I said, sometimes forgetting is the best policy. Pretend it didn't happen and let it go, unless of course you feel you can resolve it in another way. The point is, don't become bitter or malcontent with the past.

Holly said...

For the record, I have never tried to replace their mother and our (mine & hubby's) goal has always been to NOT segregate. If you read everything, as well as the post I pointed Mitzi to (Great Mom Moments), you would see that I LOVE my WHOLE family and just needed to vent...

Actually, "Golden Boy", "Goofball" (Who takes pride in that status wherever he goes, btw), "College Boy" and the boys still at home are the only ones (+ families) that did follow. My own daughter didn't even wear make-up. I like the picture... It was just frustrating that they will get all nice for the portraits they get of their individual family walls, but ours doesn't matter. And if you read it all, I have no problem with the pyramid picture, I think it's cute! It's the multiple shots that so openly exclude/segregate that started to bug.

As for the oldest; there have been many things, (not just him, but his wife and children, too. If people don't think their attitudes come through their children, you're wrong.) I am always trying to let things go and move on. Pretend like nothing happened. That's the story of my life.

So I guess I'm not allowed to feel... No emotions allowed...

I thought this a safe place to vent and get it out of my system so I could keep pretending. NONE of them even interact with me on facebook.

So, TIM... if this is actually "Smiley"... I have no problem with your mother BEING there... read closer. My problem is that I can't (whether I should try or not) live up to her here... and with the ATTITUDE I have at the current time... won't be in the picture. Yes, I was hoping to have my turn HERE & now. So, if this is you, Smiley, I'm sorry if your family didn't get the message. I DID appreciate that the cute factor was there and it was prepared for. Your group coordinated with each other, at least.

Friendly Observer... Hmmm would this be "Artsy" or "Heart-breaker" I try so hard to take "happy-go-lucky, let everything roll off your shoulders, the glass is ALWAYS half full" lessons from your dad. I never anticipated some of the things I'm going through with the bipolar. I wish it were that easy.


Anonymous said...

When I feel the need to vent, I will vent to a few close friends. I know that I say alot of things when I am venting that I would not want to be posted for the world to see. In the heat of the moment, I tend to be self absorbed and only see things from my view. After venting I tend to soften and see things from both sides, (which in retrospect is probably more realistic.) Venting it to the world can be hurtful and cause problems that didn't really exsist in the first place. You might want to try another way of venting in the future. I would write a letter, talk to a few close friends, scream into a pillow, whatever it takes, but things can start spiraling out of control when you vent to the world about how crappy you think your family is. Because odds are, your family is terrific and your view of them needs to change. Being involved only in yourself is a very lonely place to be.

Anonymous said...

You are welcome to FEEL and VENT. But you need to understand others have feelings too. So be ready to accept the comments if you open up to everyone.
You are right, you will NEVER replace these childrens mother. Lets be real though, are they going to WANT to be close to you when you are talking this way about them. A mother loves, nurtures, understands that a 4 year old doesn't want to take pictures and adores them regardless (make-up or not!)
I respect fully you stepping into a family, that must be hard. This is NOT the way to win their love though. Be happy that you have family surrounding you...NOT what they are wearing.
"Treat others the way you want to be treated" Would you want them to blog horrible things about you?
I agree with the last comment...find a pillow and hit it. Not your family.

Holly said...

WHO do you propose I go vent to??? The people that give me support are HERE! The people to educate about the MANY facets of bipolar are HERE! The people I relate to are HERE!

Now when someone declares WARNING: Vent/Rant... you would think it would be understood as just that...

However, it would be appreciated that you would have the decency to read all of it before passing judgment. Clearly a person that needs to vent is just wanting to get it out of their system. Perhaps YOU have all the support, acceptance, and understanding you need. YAY YOU!

If you know me, call me, e-mail me, at least use your real profile. Don't be a coward hiding behind ANONYMOUS... I'm removing anonymous from allowed posters. You're welcome to comment, but don't do it in a cowardly way.

If you read it all... and the comments, and the post I pointed people to... perhaps you would have gotten the idea that I DO LOVE my family... You make it out like I'm spelling out their names and making up lies!! I don't put names and most of the post was just stating what happened. Yes, I was frustrated that it didn't seem important to others that we only get EVERYONE together every few YEARS... HORRIBLE THINGS?? REALLY??? Did they DO HORRIBLE THINGS??? Have I gone and said ALL of THEM DID "horrible things"? Come, come, now... I told you a MILLION times not to exaggerate.

I LOVE how people make something that was "getting it out" into even WORSE than it WAS! And I'm a horrible person. I was making a statement about the little girl, I even laughed when I shot the picture and I am well aware of how difficult it is to get children to cooperate when they aren't in the mood... So imagine how much harder it is when you have a group this size...

WIN their LOVE??? There is only one that hadn't been supportive in the past... and even he is pretty subtl so if I were to OVER react he could cry innocence. So IF they SEE this it's not because I put it in front of them, or to win their love. And if those stop being supportive NOW rather than trying to understand that I needed to let off some steam... Which is better than the alternative, which would have been to BLOW... If they can't see with the things I've DONE and overlooked... If they can't read it ALL and just choose to take offense... Well, I don't know what to say.

"Being involved only in yourself is a very lonely place to be." Oh WOW!! Being where you are avoiding anything that could be a potential problem in a group of 34... Living with bipolar in the midst of those that want you to only be bright and cheery in spite of anything that is thrown in your direction... TRUST ME, that can be a VERY LONELY place, too.

Life through the eyes of a bipolar brain is lonely enough. These things just thrust you into a dark pit... and soon you don't even CARE if you get out of that pit... You just want to dig it deeper and bury yourself in it.

I am SO TIRED...

Tim said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tim said...

I don't understand why you are upset that people are commenting on your blog. "Clearly a person that needs to vent is just wanting to get it out of their system." Make sure you get it all out so you can move on. Choose to accept someones opinion as an opinion.

You think people are hiding behind "ANONYMOUS". I think your HIDING behind BIPOLAR, but I won't call you a coward. When I see what you write, in my mind I also hear you say "Wo is me. I've fallen and can't get up".

You said "Life through the eyes of a bipolar brain is lonely enough. These things just thrust you into a dark pit... and soon you don't even CARE if you get out of that pit... You just want to dig it deeper and bury yourself in it." You just might if you dont let people in to your life, and I don't meen blogging about it.

Stay strong and fight the good fight. Gain support from your family that has a vested interest in you as their Mother. You are the Mother in the whole family.

"Try not. Do, or do not. There is no try." Yoda

Trevor said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Aleostax said...

My wife was diagnosed with Bipolar several years back. I am quite familiar with the crazy behavior, anxiety and self hate it can lead to. Even though the meds (eventually) helped her stabilize mentally it caused havoc on her body. One of the side effects was weight gain which then dropped her self image, which spiraled into a why do I try mentality. I feel for anyone that has bipolar.

Sometimes as a close family member it's best to ignore the behavior and forgive the outbursts, other times the victim just needs to be made aware that it is happening. It doesn't stop it from happening, but it lets her know that she's being a crazy person and needs to take it down a notch.

The internal dialog with yourself about how you feel and how this disorder is affecting your life, is a dangerous place to visit. While it might inspire you to fight, more often than not it's just the start of a another cycle and you'll find yourself sinking in the quicksand that is Bipolar. Try and keep the focus off of you and your feelings and direct your internal dialog to more pleasant thoughts. If you can't get it under control, work with doctors to find the right meds for you.

My wife's bipolar was out of control early on and a great deal of effort was made on her part to get it under control. We went through many different meds trying to find the ones with the most manageable side effects and dealing with the cycles constantly. It almost destroyed our marriage, her job, her way of life really. It's a real problem that some people have.

In this way, Bipolar is a bit like alcoholism. If you get the itch to indulge, fight it. You may never be free of the tendency, but you can choose to fight it on a continual basis and be a recovering victim of bipolar.

The motivation to fight the crazies can come from many sources. Find yours and see if you can whip this beast into a more orderly and controllable aspect of your life.

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