My sister and I, two married adults, have encountered major problems in our relationship. We have always been close but grew up in a tumultuous household that left both of us with deep emotional scars.
Recently, she decided at least, in my opinion, to project her emotional baggage onto me. This caused her to not talk to me and block my cell number. The main financial problem here is that I pay the mobile phone bill because we all still have a family plan!
I pay about $70 a month, which includes her monthly installment. I think his behavior is egregious – blocking my number and expecting me to keep paying his bill. I don’t want to hurt our relationship further though as I hope to reconcile. Should I remove her from the diet?
the other sister
For some reason, your sister is angry and blocking your number is a way to express her frustration, but it’s also a way for her to dissociate herself from the relationship. Blocking yourself is an easy way to avoid conflict and stress. Hitting the block button is far from an ideal way to manage a relationship unless you’re protecting yourself from an abusive situation or a stalker.
But like many such acts involving technology – blocking yourself on your iPhone
unfollow on Twitter, unfollow on Facebook
– it’s a bold statement and often made in the heat of the moment. A small push of a button can result in epic payoffs for the injured party. But kicking him out of the family cell phone plan will only make the situation worse and add fuel to the fire.
At some point in life, we have to find the sweetest path, especially if we want that person to stay in our life long term. You will never have another sister who will be as magnificently imperfect as this one. You grew up in a dysfunctional home and you are dealing with the ramifications. You may have learned to lash out when hurt and fight back. This creates a cycle of pain.
Someone has to be the adult you never had growing up. Let that person be you. If your sister is on your family plan, I guess she needs some financial support. Unplugging her cell phone coverage could have far greater consequences for her than this relationship. She will need her phone to work and to pay her bills, in addition to seeking support from friends and family.
The knee-jerk reaction would be to kick her out of the family plan. But we also live in an environment of rising inflation, economic uncertainty and the looming threat of recession. Write a letter to your sister offering to speak when she’s ready. But retaliation, especially when it could have serious financial and professional consequences for your sister, is not the solution.
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