Dear Little Sister

20 Aug

Little sister,
I know that you never wanted to be like me. I know that you thought I was nerdy, uncool, a loser. I know that you hated it when I nagged you to join that theatre group. I know you’ll never see this, and if you do, you won’t know it’s me.

But now you’re in trouble, and everyone is bailing you out. I know you’re never going to pay me back, even if you ‘get back on your feet’ again. I know you’ll never thank me for watching your son for hours, even days. And I know that no one will ever say that I’m a good person for helping you out, because you’re my sister and it’s assumed I’ll always be by your side.

I’m writing to let someone, if not you, then just SOMEONE know how frustrated I am. How sick of bailing you out, protecting you, defending you, convincing your boss to give you just one more chance, convincing you that he’s not right for you, that he just wants to use you up and throw you away like all the others.

I know that if said this out loud, I would sound like a horrible person. “Sisters are the special friends God chooses to be related to you,” they say, and who am I to fight back? “Stop feeling sorry for yourself; you’re not the one going through a hard time like your sister is,” they say, but they’re wrong. I am going though a time just as hard as yours. What you would realize if you got your eyes to see farther than your own face in the mirror is that I just got out of counseling for OCD one week before you moved in, and already I’m slipping back into my rituals. Four years of mental strain and anguish, of triumph and finally freedom, destroyed in four weeks of taking care of you and your son. I’m so sick of the person I look at when I flip the switch in the bathroom and look in the mirror. And I’m sick of the person who says she’ll be home in time for dinner, honest, and then staggers into my house at four in the morning, reeking of alcohol and covered in vomit and semen.

I’m so sick of this, and you know that. You also know that I am too fragile, too delicate, too soft-hearted to tell you to take care of yourself. So I’m telling the whole world about you and your problems and your freeloading, and me and my rituals and my weakness.I’m telling the world so that someone, somewhere will know.

Big Sister


7 Responses to “Dear Little Sister”

  1. Kate August 22, 2010 at 6:13 am #

    I recently wrote a similar letter to my little sister. I know that it is so hard to say ‘enough’ to family, but at some point, we need to stop facilitating their behavior. Don’t let your sister take advantage of you (I’m trying not to).

    • AGW October 18, 2010 at 4:29 am #

      Dear Big Sister,
      Show her this letter. Open her eyes. Take her son away if she’s unfit and force her to get on her feet before she can be a part of either of your lives again.
      Take control.

  2. J August 22, 2010 at 7:56 pm #

    Dear Big Sister,
    Maybe thats exactly what your little sister needs, someone to tell her to stop… some sort of control. Shes dealing with things the way she thinks is right but as the older sister I would strongly recommend sitting her down. Forcing her to listen, but not as a sister, as a friend.
    She needs to realise that you’re not always going to be there to ‘bail her out’.
    Sometimes we need to step back and see the world from another angle to understand it and change what we see for the better.

    • Sandie August 24, 2010 at 12:24 am #

      Please don’t let your sister take advantage of you like she is. Do not bail her out because you feel you have to . you are your own person with you own life. sometimes it takes tough love or just letting go. if there is always someone getting her out of the mess she creates for herself, how will whe learn to take responciblity for herself. sometimes letting go is the best help you can give someone. I wish I could tell you how much it helped me.

  3. Ben August 27, 2010 at 6:56 pm #

    I agree with Sandie. As a recovering alcoholic, I know first-hand that recieving “help” rom my family only hurt me. Having hit absolute bottom, my eyes were open. I am now sober, in college, work full time and am happily married with three kids. Sometimes God has to put us flat on our backs in order for us to look up.

    • Nats August 31, 2010 at 10:15 pm #

      hey big sister,
      – stop bailing her out!
      it will be good for both of you.
      my mother has a sister like yours,
      she finally learned to say no.
      and theyre both in a better lifestyle right now.
      my mums sister went through a stage of being an escort because she fort it would be good for her, then she got in trouble with one of her clients, my mum helped her, risked her own life to defend her.
      now, my mothers sister is in full time work at a farm for disabeld children, owns her own large house.
      has a husband and two children.
      shes very happy thanks to my mum rejecting bailing her out.
      my mum now can sort out her own problems and gets on with her sister alot better than she used to.
      theyr’e both much happier, wealthier + healither today.

      you both could be too, if you just say no!

      lots of love,

      Natalie x

  4. tammy June 24, 2012 at 5:50 pm #

    sounds to me like you are enabling her…which means you are part of the problem. do some research on boundaries and setting limits…this is so unhealthy for both of you.

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