In the one year that “we” have owned the home, my sister has twice had a girls weekend to which I have not been invited. She invites mutual friends of ours and only tells me who she invited if I pointedly ask. I am hurt by her snub, which I feel is intentional.
We live in different areas of the city now and I honestly don’t spend as much time with the group that still lives in “her neighborhood,” but I still feel slighted and left out. Although the home is meant for all of us to enjoy and we have each taken individual friends out on our own, these occasions are different because I would also consider this particular group of women my friends.
My sister and I have a close relationship, but I’ve learned over the years that she is a tad narcissistic, definitely self-absorbed. She would certainly come up with a lame excuse if I confront her, but I feel that if I say nothing, this will keep happening indefinitely.
She is entitled to time with her friends, as am I, and I’ve had no issues with her taking friends that we don’t share and vice versa. She likely knows how rude it is by not including me in these get-togethers and is, or would be, deliberately sneaky about the guest list if I didn’t ask directly.
She doesn’t need my permission to take friends out as we typically just let the rest of the family know that we intend to use the house at a particular time so no one else plans to be there. I technically have my own room, which I am free to use at any time, but we all try to be respectful of “reserved” time.
Should I confront her? I am used to this type of behavior from her but am still shocked and upset by this, now for the second time in less than a year.
Your advice would be greatly appreciated. — Slighted Sister
You need to figure out what it is – and who it is – you’re most upset about here because this isn’t a dilemma that includes only you and your sister. There’s a whole group of friends here who pretty much star in this dilemma, and I wonder what your thoughts are about them and your relationship with them. You share nothing about your friendship except that they live in a different neighborhood and you don’t spend as much time with them anymore. Is it possible that your friendship has changed and you aren’t as close with this group anymore? I suspect it has and you aren’t, and rather than really confront THAT issue with these friends, it’s easier to think about confronting your sister and this snub you’re feeling from her. And you can do that, but I don’t think you’re going to get the result that you want if you approach her from a “confrontation” angle, where you’re declaring an offense and she has to go on the defense.
Instead of “confronting” your sister, you could invite a discussion about your friendship with your mutual group of friends and express to her your feelings about where you stand with them, and how you’ve felt excluded lately. This way, you aren’t framing it as a “you snubbed me” confrontation, but more of a discussion that starts with: “Hey, I’m feeling excluded by our group of friends lately and since you’re part of the group and part of my being excluded, I was hoping you could share your perception of what’s going on and how I can re-join our friend group.” And that’s assuming you *want* to re-join the friend group. Do you? Because you aren’t making the time to hang out with them, and you aren’t inviting them to your family’s weekend retreat even though you own the house as much as your sister does.
You are upset about feeling slighted, and I certainly empathize with that, but what active steps have you taken in the past, say, year to foster these relationships? If the answer is “not much,” then maybe others have felt slighted by you. It’s possible. But clearly this is more than not being invited to a couple weekend retreats. There’s a fracture in your relationship with your sister and/or your relationship with your mutual friends, and if you want to repair it rather than crack it further, you need to approach this graciously and with love and not come to it with only hurt feelings and a bone to pick.
I know those kind of settlements take time and I know my boyfriend wants to be rid of her. But he’s trying to settle with her by communicating with HER instead of a lawyer, which I suggested, and he’s trying to take the cheaper way of doing it, even though he feels she has embezzled him. He says he doesn’t care – he wants her out of his life and just wants to end it. Should I care? Should I just turn my head? I personally am well off and don’t need his money, but I guess since I’m the other woman, I would prefer if he stood up more to her. Should I care? — The Other Woman
Sure, you can care. You can care about your boyfriend, you can care about how his financial life effects yours, you can care about how his divorce settlement will affect his relationship to work and how that, in turn, will affect the time he can devote to your and your relationship. You can care about all of this, but that doesn’t mean you get to dictate how your boyfriend and his ex-wife conduct their divorce. When it comes to their divorce (and maybe the end of their marriage?), you *are* the other woman, and while you can share your preferences with your boyfriend, he doesn’t have to do anything just because it’s what you want.
I know you’re his girlfriend now and his ex-wife is no longer in a romantic relationship with him, but their finances are still merged and she is entitled to what she’s entitled to, whether you like that or not. There may be a difference of opinion – hers, his, yours – on what a wife who owns half a business with her husband whom she likely supported in a multitude of ways both big and small, seen and unseen, for who knows how many years – is entitled to. But it’s not for you to decide. It’s for your boyfriend and his ex-wife to decide, and if they can’t, then for a judge to decide. You don’t have to “turn your head,” but I do think beyond sharing what your hopes and goals are for your relationship with your boyfriend and how any settlement he makes with his ex might affect those desires, you should probably mostly keep your mouth shut and let the two former partners figure this out without you.