“An apology can be a wonderful thing so long as it is infrequent and from the heart. However, beware of the person who justifies bad behavior with apologies. For them it is a means to an end, and quite often at your expense.”
~ Gary Hopkins
Yesterday I wrote about how the energies right now are causing many sensitive and intuitive souls to back away from drama and poor behaviour in relationships. Instead, sensitive souls are seeking greater peace and harmony in their everyday lives.
I had lots of comments and messages from people who identified with that need for peace and who had been actively stepping out of or minimising difficult relationships, and I also had a few messages like the one below. Although this is a more extreme example the sentiments expressed were a common thread in my inbox:
Dear Nicole, I was wondering if you could help me. I am living in a difficult situation. I moved home from the city a few years ago when my father became ill, and I live in a flat under my parents’ house. I’m self-employed and I’m single with no kids, unlike my siblings, so it was decided I would be the best person to help out.
My dad is an alcoholic invalid who becomes physically violent at times, and my mother often takes out her frustration on me by verbally abusing me, hitting me or wrecking my stuff. On my birthday this year some friends came to our country town for the weekend to celebrate with me. My mum smeared faeces all over my car inside and out just before I was to drive into town to meet them for lunch. There is no taxi service in my town and I was so upset that I cancelled the lunch, and couldn’t get the car clean enough to meet them the next morning either and I was too ashamed to tell my friends what had happened.
My parents rely on me to drive them places, to manage their medications, do their shopping and the lion’s share of the housework. In the few years I have been home they have become increasingly frail and more and more dependent on me. Both of them drink and my mum is addicted to pain meds.
I am at the end of my rope. I’ve just turned forty and my parents may live for another twenty years or more. Respite Care won’t take them and the Blue Nurses will no longer come because both my parents have been violent towards them. Can you please tell me how to find some peace in my situation? It sometimes gets so bad that I consider self-harm.
Dear friend, I have some very simple advice for you. Call your siblings and have a family meeting. Don’t negotiate with them. You’ve done your time. It does not matter that you don’t have children or a partner. Your life is equally valuable! You are wasting your precious life on people who have no regard or respect for you. It’s time to leave.
Just because someone is a family member does not give them the right to abuse you and disrespect you. And just because you are a woman, and a single woman, does not mean you should get stuck with becoming a carer in such a difficult environment. Work with your family and health care providers or the appropriate departments to get a care solution for your family that doesn’t involve you. Or, just leave. Your parents are adults too. They are making their choices and you have the right to make your own.
To all of you dear readers who find yourself in a situation where a family member or loved one shames you, bullies you, intimidates you, hurts you, abuses you, disregards or disrespects you – please understand that being family is not an excuse for bad behaviour. Being family does not give anyone the right to treat you badly. And being family does not mean that you must remain loyal, subservient or tolerate abuse.
If you are a sensitive, intuitive or empathic soul and you are craving quiet over drama, peace over difficulty, safety over trauma, then do what is right by you and distance yourself from the relationship or situation. You can let someone stay in your heart but remove them from your life. This is your one precious life and you don’t get a do-over. Don’t waste it on people who can’t respect or care for you even as you care for and respect them.
I’m sending you so much love, and holding space for you to find the courage to choose a life that gives you back your freedom, Nicole xx