Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Happy Birthday Nightmare part 1

My husband and I "celebrated" my mom's birthday on Sunday... But I don't think we can call it a celebration... I should have known from the get-go that we were in trouble but I really wanted the day to go nice for my mom (we even dressed up).

We walked in armed with flowers and presents. My sister was finishing a glass of wine, her fiance a beer...
and while we were still in the process of saying hello she deadpan asked if we brought her anything from our cruise...

First off this is the first time I've seen her since the horrible episode at her house which lead me to refuse to return her phone calls for weeks. We actually didn't speak until around a week or so and I only did that since we had to plan the birthday luncheon.

So needless to say it got awkward when I said no...

I tried to fill the dead silence with the promise of posting pictures online from the cruise soon but it didn't work. I just ignored her comments to her fiance about not getting presents and I instead handed my mom her present. She thanked us and the second she was done my sister immediately started listing off everything she got her for her birthday trying to "out do us" in a repeat of Christmas 2010... but I expected it this time so it didn't phase us a bit.

Eventually we all poured into my sisters luxury car (Yup, THE $60K Car) since she insisted on driving and my mom wanted us all to carpool together to the restaurant as a family (and yes, if you caught it, my sister apparently thinks its fine to down a glass of wine and then immediately drive). Next time we are taking our own car. 

The luncheon seemed to be going well despite the fact that my sister and her fiance both chose to drink at lunch. My mom declined my sisters multiple offers to drink wine and the hubby and I figured it was because my mom would be driving us back to her house... but no, my sister ended up driving instead... another reason not to ever carpool again.

Sadly, during lunch my sister tried to push all my buttons. We had to listen about how she was thinking about getting married in Mexico again... and when those comments didn't set me off, she tried telling us that we better be saving up our money for it. (I almost laughed out loud. I've made it clear that if she's getting married in Mexico that we aren't going.)

When that failed to spark her desired response, she tried again. My sister knows that I signed an event contract at work and will keep me busy the first weekend in June of 2012 & 2013, so she decided to declare that weekend for her wedding. Previously she tried labeling this weekend as her bachelorette Vegas weekend so now she's stepping it up. She didn't like my polite response that I wouldn't be able to make it since my work event goes for 24 hours straight.

By some miracle though, she gave up and changed the subject... 

She started talking about finance and money. She went on about how they can't manage to go out to dinner and not blow at least $100 a night and about how she quite her part time evening job because she didn't want to work the upcoming holiday season. I tuned out most of their budget ironies as I ate... but then she made some comment about how people aren't spending money this month because they only have this month to put money into their Retirement accounts for the year...  and I made the stupid mistake of attempting to correct her. My guard was down because personal finance is apart of who I am and if I could take it back I would have... but some how I found myself correcting her.

I asked if she was referring to "open enrollment" --when you sign up for the following years heath benefits and retirement elections... and instead of a simple yes or no, she looked at me dumb faced and angry with the attitude of someone who believes that the world revolves around them and them alone. She quipped, "I know more about this than you... you just work in a stupid gym."

I really just wanted to let her have it at that point but instead I just shook my head. I looked at my husband and just tried to change the subject... but my sister wouldn't have it...


  1. Yikes. You're doing really well not letting her push your buttons. Don't let her belittle you, your job or your lifestyle choices. Think about the 'Millionaire Next Door' concept and be confident in your decisions to secure your financial future.

    Also, it sounds like your Mom is making a very good attempt at maintaining a relationship with you and your fiance by not drinking.

    Maybe someday your sister will come around. Maybe not. Just smile because you know she can't control you.

  2. I honestly don't even know how you put up with that! Your sister and you sound very opposite.

  3. I probably missed the back story - but why does your sister resent you so much? Is she jealous? Is she super insecure?

    Stay strong and don't let her get to you! I don't have it that bad, but I do understand frustrating family members. It's never easy to deal with them.

  4. I'm not really sure the back story on my sister... If you read the "about me tab" on the homepage you can get the idea of the kind of household I/we grew up in... It wasn't pretty...

    and I really don't know how it affected her growing up. It seems we each took on different roles. (I hid and played doormat... She decided to become the aggressor when my parents divorced.)

    She just doesn't like the fact that i'm not her doormat anymore and that she can't push me around like she used to. It used to be that she could always pick on me to feel better (my tears = her happiness) so who really knows...

  5. Your sister is toxic. You need to cut her out of your life, for good, end of story.

  6. I am really proud of the way you are facing up to her recently. She is nothing but trouble.

    Please keep us posted on this.
    I would only advise you to stay as far away as possible but when you live near to one another it is v. hard.
    Can you just totally avoid her?

  7. I just reread your "about me" story and am even more impressed at how well you have done. Please leave this sister out of your life completely.

  8. Cutting her out completely would really ruin the progress I've made with my mom on everything... She desperately wants us to all be a "family" but i'm not so sure that I can get into that.

    For now i'm sticking to my guns and what I declared at the horrible BBQ, so despite what my sister wants, at this point its holidays and birthdays so it means a month until I have to see her for thanksgiving.

    Any ideas on how I can convince my mom that this isn't the year to re-test her cooking skills and just continue the newer tradition of going out to brunch? My sister is much easier to tone down in public.