Patty L. Fletcher
April 17 2016
Family arguments can be some of the nastiest and most hurtful of any there are in the world. They can also be some of the longest lasting. Some families are quite literally torn apart by what starts as a misunderstanding. This has been my experience far too much of late.
About four years ago, my daughter and I had a falling out – over what was thought by some to be a misunderstanding. In reality our argument truly comes from grudges held by her because of my past behavior which I can no more do anything about, than I can do something about the weather. Is it something which could be worked through? Certainly. Would it be easy? Certainly not, but with time, honesty and hard work on both our parts, I believe it could be resolved. Do I want that? Of course, will she meet me half way? Not as of yet.
I have reached out many times, only to be turned away. I have come to learn to live with it, but there is not a day goes by that I do not think of her and her family, which I am missing out on.
Just this past week, I found myself in yet another conflict with family. This argument started simply because my twelve year old grand niece mistook my tone of voice, and her mother, my niece in law came and addressed me in a way I allowed myself to be offended by. Before I knew it my mouth was running long ahead of my brain. Soon she and I were tossing nasties at one another. As if this weren’t bad enough, the next night, I started out trying to work things out with my nephew, my grand niece’s father, but in the process, once again my mouth ran away without my brain. I said some things to him about something his wife had said to me and my sister, his mother, that maybe should’ve been left alone, and thanks to my sister’s not being willing to tell the truth about what she heard, and my nephew’s wife refusing to own up to what she’d said, I am now considered public enemy number one.
Would I like to apologize for my part in all of this? Absolutely. Should I apologize for my part in this? Absolutely. Have I tried? Yes, but to no good end.
There are always two sides to every story, all I can do is to admit my wrong doing, and hold tight to my belief that in time these things I write of here, will work themselves out. Yes I have part to blame in all counts of troubles which I have written of here, but so do those I write of, and I am not going to beat myself up for making mistakes. I am admitting in writing here that I have done such, and I am more than willing to take responsibility for my mistakes.
What needs to happen? We all need to sit down, clear the air, chalk it up to families gone wild, and start again. Will my family do this? At the current time it appears not, but I am hopeful that one day they will. For now, I leave it in a higher power’s hands than mine, hope for the best, wish them the best, and send my love as much as is possible.
Does this hurt me? Yes, in fact it hurts in ways that I cannot even describe. I never thought that such could or would happen between my nephew and I. In fact reading some of the horrible things he wrote about me and what he supposedly has thought of me all along was quite hard and unexpected. He was the one who always promised that he never lied about what he thought or felt, and always claimed to be straight up, and always said he did not believe in being fake. Then I find out that he’s thought these things all along. I am still processing, and am hopeful that one day all can be set to right.
My reaction this week has been to at first lash out, but I quickly squashed that, because I’ve learned that it only makes things worse. In fact probably had I not brought up things about their personal situation, the rest might have already resolved itself.
What good has come from this? At this point you’re probably thinking that nothing good came from it, but this is what I have observed. In the face of wishing to protect one another, I have witnessed my nephew and his family seeming to grow a bit closer together, and if it took them feeling threatened by “an outside source” to do so, then although it is hurtful to be that “outside source” I can be glad for them.
What else good has come from this? Well, to some it might seem trivial, but due to our argument the internet here got turned off, and this forced me to use my iphone, thus increasing my ability. Then upon exploring things about it a bit, I learned that my hotspot is now active, and I can have internet as long as I don’t download large amounts of data and in fact don’t need any net connection, thus lessening my monthly expenses. So even in the face of adversity there has been some good.
What lessons have I learned?
1. Don’t run off at the mouth without thinking. No matter how offended or angry you feel. Stop! Think, and then act!
2. Remember, no matter what there are always two sides to a story, and one should hear both before passing judgment.
3. Don’t get in to someone else’s argument, and don’t do as my sister has done, and take sides, without at the very least hearing both sides to the story.
4. Be willing to forgive. Family is precious, and should be treated as such. Life is short, and one needs to ask themselves if the argument will matter in ten years. If the answer is no, and it almost always is, then be willing to work it out.
Until next time, this is Patty, Campbell, and Bobcat saying, May harmony find you, and