When I was 15 my parents started to get divorced. At 16 my mom and I moved out of the house after a pretty fucked up situation that made me respect her even more than I already did. To some it up, she threw herself to the wolves instead of letting me ruin my relationship with my dad. What also came out of that was she lost my brother. It has been 10 years since my brother stopped talking to my mom. It has been 6 years since he stopped talking to me and while the reasoning for why he stopped talking to her makes sense, even though he only knows half of the story and he wasn’t actually present like I was to see what actually happened. Why he stopped talking to me doesn’t.
The thing that frustrates me about this whole situation is that when he stopped talking to me, he cut himself off from my whole family on both sides. While a few family members on my dad’s side still see him every once and a while the vast majority only know what I do, and that’s nothing. Every holiday I now expect to be asked about him, to be told to keep trying, to tell me that it is up to me to bring him back.
In reality it isn’t.
My brother is an adult. If he wants to not have contact with his family that is his choice. If he doesn’t want to have contact with me that is his choice. It is also my choice whether or not I should put myself through the emotional mess of dealing with the fact that I have someone out there who shares the same DNA as me and wants nothing to do with me. I throw that box on the top shelf of my closet and hide it behind all of my other baggage.
I am often told that I should just contact him, write a letter every once and a while. This again ignores that I am doing all of the emotional output in this relationship. I care about my brother, I care that he is well, I care that he is happy but at what expense should I care about him when he has little regard for my own wellbeing?
If you know someone who is estranged from their sibling stop giving advice and just listen. You probably know very little about what actually happened. Shit I was involved and I still don’t know exactly why he stopped talking to me but I’m sick of sitting around and caring. If he comes back then he comes back, if he doesn’t well then he is missing out.