I’ve been re-running these Prozac Palace posts with the hope that anyone who needs to read this sort of thing will find them.
It’s occurred to me that readers may wish to comment, but not know what to say.
This is understandable.
You’re under no obligation to say anything. If you want to, but are at a loss, may I suggest this simple phrase: I read it.
Originally posted Monday, April 30, 2007
Were my parents any help against my sister's bullying? A commenter asked this and I gave the short, easy answer of no. But it’s not entirely correct.
Mom stepped in once. I was about eight and we’d gotten into a fight in the living room that wound up in Dawn’s bedroom. It’s been 40 years so I can’t recall exactly how it happened, but I remember clearly that I was winning.
My sister and I were about an arm’s length apart when mom came in and said we’d better stop. At first I was relieved. She’d stopped a fight. Then I got scared because I knew wasn’t really over and that Dawn was just going to finish the fight later on.
Then I realized something that proved true all through our lives. The only time mom ever stepped in was when I had the upper hand.
I learned that day to not stand up for myself. It’s quicker and more efficient to let Dawn win.
I still fought back to a minor degree. I wasn’t a total doormat, I simply had sense enough to take it.
Physical pain is transient. Gouges and scratches stop bleeding. Emotional hurt endures, though, and stopping a fight because the wrong kid was winning was an experience I only needed once.
For background on my sister and her mental illness please see this post at The Goat's Lunch Pail and this Goat's Lunch Pail post and Talia’s post on it at the Centre for Emotional Well-Being.