(Cross-posted from pretty much everywhere, because AUGH my life.)
So, I went to visit my parents for Easter, and got to hang out with nieces and nephews and the like. I had no catsitter, so my cat went with, and the poor thing threw up, peed and pooped in her crate, so she got a bath the second she arrived at my parents’ and everything I was wearing went straight in the wash as well. She did better after that, and the weekend went pretty well overall. I got along with my parents, and things went well for Easter, if a bit hectic due to all six of my nieces and nephews being there at once.
On the ride home, my cat had a bit of a panic attack in the car and started scratching desperately at the holes in the crate, and she made her claws bleed. I stopped to get some antibiotic ointment and wraps to get the bleeding under control and to hopefully stave off infection, and I got some animal-formulated benedryl (which I forgot to compare to people-benedryl to see if it had the same ingredients and thus would cost less… I was just hoping it wouldn’t be bitter so she wouldn’t fight so hard.) When I was trying to get the pill into her mouth, one of her back teeth fell out. The root was black, and from a quick glance at the rest of her teeth while trying not to lose a finger, there are other teeth that need attention. The whole “it just fell out into my hand” bit scared me to death, so I called her vet and we have an appointment for 8:40 tomorrow morning, because I couldn’t get back to Cincinnati in time to get there today. She’s pissed about having her front feet wrapped still, but I’m not taking chances that she’ll get an infection ANYWHERE. The thing is, the reason she’s never had dental work done is because she’s deathly allergic to an anesthetic but I don’t know what anesthetic it was, and so I just tried to use tartar control food and treats to keep her teeth as clean as possible. So now she could get an infection that could kill her, or go to get her teeth pulled and die if they give her the wrong anesthetic. Her vet’s theory is that it was ketamine, as that’s the most common one, but it’s still just a guess. Not to mention, I have NO idea how I’ll pay for it, what with the whole “unemployed” thing going on. God, if I have to put her down…
So I finally made it home, and when I got on Facebook, I saw I had a message from my mom. This is what it said:
“Wow, i just read tour post from saturday about the cosmic bs…Takes a lot of gall to insult my religion behind my back, moments before you sit at my table and eat my food, all the while with a smile on your face.
Nadja perhaps you and I should not be Facebook friends as our views are pretty far apart.
You somehow feel it is up to you to set the world straight, because for some reason you think you have insight that the rest if us morons don’t.
It makes me kind of sick to my stomach. Perhaps you should really find a job in Cincinnati because while I love you, I disagree with most if what you profess to believe in and I don’t think I can live with you.
I think that perhaps before you accuse others if being hypocritical you should take a look in the mirror for All of the crap that you believe in.
I am really baffled by you.”
I have NO idea what post she is talking about. I went searching for this “cosmic BS” post but I can’t find it, and I wasn’t even online on Saturday. I was already getting upset about my cat, and now I get this note, basically cutting me off from help from my parents? I’ve tried calling both of her phones and hit her voicemail. I then called my sister and completely lost it on the phone, and my poor sister is driving back from New York and won’t be home until 1:00 AM, so there isn’t anything she can do about it.
I just… I just don’t know what to do.
Edit: I went to look and see if maybe her page would give me some more clues, and discovered that I’ve been defriended.
Edit x2: I searched through my activity log, and finally found the post she was so upset by. The thing is, I DIDN’T post it. I liked it on another page, because it made me laugh. Ironically, the first response to this picture is “Let the butt hurt commence!”
If you can’t see it, it says:
The belief that some cosmic Jewish Zombie can make you live forever if you symbolically eat his flesh and telepathically tell him that you accept him as your master, so he can remove an evil force from your soul that is present in humanity because a rib-woman was convinced by a talking snake to eat from a magical tree.
Makes perfect sense.
…So evidently things I like can show up in other people’s feeds, and mom saw that one, thought I had actually posted it, and got very upset. Rather than asking me anything about it, she sends me a passive-aggressive note and defriends me.
I AM TIRED OF THIS TREND, MOM. She is really, really good at assuming horrible things about me, such as me being lazy when I slept all day after a manic episode, or believing that I am going to be 700 pounds and disabled because I don’t eat and exercise the way she feels I should. Rather than actually talking to me to confirm this, she just runs roughshod all over me with these assumptions, doing a LOT of damage as a result.
…At least I know where I get it from. *sigh*
So after careful editing, I wrote the following response. We’ll see how this goes, as I’m either going to repair this bridge or finish burning it down.
I went back through my posts, and found nothing, so I checked my activity log, and I think I found what upset you. I liked that post because I found it funny in a heretical way, because any religion is funny when you look at it like that. I did not post it to my own wall. I didn’t even know Facebook would show my likes on other people’s feeds. I never posted that picture to my own page, because I know it was something that, while I found it funny, most people wouldn’t, and I respect my friends and family too much to post something that irreverent. I apologize that it showed up on your feed, but I didn’t post it.
It bothers me that whenever I say or do something you disagree with, rather than calling me to talk about it, something like this happens. Rather than calling me, you instead send me a message like this, and then defriend me, and not answer the phone when I call to figure out what’s going on. It bothers me that you immediately assume that I am in some way trying to hurt you, specifically, with my actions or words.
I tried so hard at Easter to just have a good visit, to enjoy visiting with the family and spending time with my nieces and nephews, and things went so well and then I came home to this note and being defriended.
I have been crying for about five hours now over this, and I’ve been writing this note for probably two. I’m not sure if it’s going to help or just make you angrier at me, but at least I will have said my piece. You’ve said before that what I look like on Facebook strikes you as militant, and I’ve suggested you block me from your feed before. Passive-aggressively defriending me when I was in the car driving home with a sick cat, without even giving me the chance to defend myself, was very hurtful.
I’m not even sure what beliefs you’re talking about, that you disagree with. Are you talking about health at every size? My beliefs in basic civil rights for all? I post equal parts silliness and politics for the most part, and I am very liberal, because I do believe that everybody deserves an equal playing field and an equal chance at happiness. I believe that I have a right to live in my body and I have a right to be treated with respect, even though society has declared war on obesity, and thus a war on fat people.
If you disagree with me on that, it’s fine. I try not to talk about politics or religion when I am home, and I also have never said anything disrespectful about religion to you, at least that I am aware of. I try so hard to be respectful and follow the rules when I’m home, and yet every time there’s been something that upset you or my stepdad. Every. Time.
When I try to set healthy boundaries with you, you tell me I have a chip on my shoulder and are angry all the time, so I let the boundaries slip a bit, and instead take abuse once again. Would you like to know why I seem angry?
You said recently that I “wasn’t even heavy” until after the divorce. But that’s when the disordered eating started, and I was modeling it after you. You basically stopped eating after your divorce, living on salads and coffee, and lost weight, and fussed over your weight, and I internalized all of that disordered eating behavior. For physical and psychological reasons, I gained weight, as my thyroid stopped functioning and I started to eat my emotions rather than expressing them in a healthy manner. I tried to emulate your behaviors and weight loss and failed, over and over and over again. I started developing my own disordered eating patterns of hiding when I ate from you, and feeling shame over food where before I didn’t. I tried every diet and continued to fail, and fail and fail. I hated myself, I hated my body, and I could feel you hating my fat body too. Every time you made a disparaging remark about your weight, mine, or anyone else’s, I felt shame. I felt that I didn’t deserve any happiness until I could be skinny like you.
And then, one day, I decided I didn’t want to hate myself anymore. It’s taken years of therapy to get to the point where I didn’t want to hate me anymore. I decided to make peace with my body, and I have learned to love it, all of it. I remember telling you about that and you saying something about how you can’t say the same thing, and it made me sad, because you are one of those few people who can maintain long-term weight loss, and yet you still weren’t happy with who you saw in the mirror.
I discovered health at every size, and I discovered fat advocacy. I discovered that I DON’T have to apologize to anyone for my weight, and I don’t owe anyone health or a skinny body. I don’t have to feel ashamed. I can develop a healthier relationship with food. And when I tried to share this marvelous new way of looking at things with you, you told me you don’t agree, and you told me that when you and Kelly look at me you imagine me being 700 pounds and disabled because I am so fat. And my attempts to set up boundaries by saying “I don’t want to discuss this with you” and stopping conversations about weight and food and disordered eating evidently looks like a chip on my shoulder, or that I’m angry.
I am angry. I am angry that you cannot accept me for who I am, and instead you continue to make comments on my body size because you are concerned about my health. When I’ve given you actual health information you don’t believe it is true, because you believe that weight=health and nothing I say can change that. You doubt that I exercise, you doubt that I eat healthy, and no amount of trying to please you has ever worked, so I do not know why I keep trying. I am angry because I just want to be accepted and loved for who I am, unconditionally, but there seem to be conditions every time I turn around.
I’ve been working since I was sixteen. I’ve bought all of my own cars with my own money. I kept up good grades in high school and college. I worked throughout college, and have worked ever since. I hate, hate, HATE asking for anything, because it makes me feel guilty and worthless because I couldn’t do it myself.
Being jobless right now is so hard; do you have any idea how many times I’ve wanted to kill myself just so I wouldn’t be such a burden to my family? Do you have any idea how hard this is, when the self-hate and self-depreciation WILL NOT STOP and all I can think about is how to kill myself in a way that will not be too messy so it won’t traumatize whomever finds me? When I became manic on Black Friday and then slept the following day because I had crashed, you and Kelly both were angry at me because you felt I was being lazy and rude to you. Rather than coming to see if I was okay, or even asking if everything was OK when I did get up, you both were just angry at me, and I didn’t even find out until you came to that therapy appointment with me.
I have been bipolar for most of my life, and you’ve known it for quite a while. I think when it finally sank in for you, was when I was hospitalized at 21. I’m 29 now, and yet it seems that you don’t understand this illness very well. You asked me what I would’ve done if my daughter had slept all day, and I replied that I would’ve checked on her. If my daughter had bipolar disorder, I would be the world’s leading expert on the illness, because I would want to know to be supportive. I’m educating you on this illness I’ve lived with for most of my life, and I’m not even sure why you don’t already know it. Do you not want to accept that I’m bipolar? Do you not want to accept that I’m going to have to live with this for the rest of my life, and that’s why I will never have children, and why I will probably not get married or have a so-called normal life? Do you not want to accept that someday I will probably be on disability because the illness will continue to break me day by day? I’d love to not have to accept that, but I don’t have that luxury.
I’ve wanted to have this conversation with you for so long, but I can’t ever get the words to come out, and it always seemed too passive-aggressive to write a note. But as a response to a note, I’m hoping it’ll be okay.
I hope you don’t hate me after you read this. I love you. I can’t be what you want, I can’t be the daughter you wanted, but I am trying. I just hope maybe things can be better in the future.