I am finally at a point now where money is not the most important thing in my life. I am so very, very grateful for this. As we all know, up to a certain age, things are so very, very important to a person. I always envied people that were perfectly happy with what they had, no matter how much or how little, because I always seemed to want more and more. Now that I am in a stable and loving relationship, I do not feel the need for additional things so much anymore.
My sister and I brought each other up in a family situation where we were excluded from the main nucleus, which included our mother, step father and the wonderful half sister. (Sounds all very Cinderella-ish, doesn’t it?) Sister and I lived all of our teenage years on the fringe of that “family”, not having any material extras except what we could provide for ourselves through babysitting jobs. This kind of atmosphere does not encourage healthy emotional growth. Self esteem and self confidence were two things in which we were sadly lacking. I tried to make up for this lacking by buying “things”, hoping to fill that void.
We could have probably done very well, even without the material extras, if we could have been included in the approval and love that they lavished on the step sister. But — being not terribly instinctive people, they thought that if they allowed “their child” to do anything and everything that she wanted to do, and if they bought anything and everything that “their child” wanted, that they were being good parents. “Their child” didn’t have parents, she had 2 walking talking wallets with money falling out of them.
Sister and I both have had failed marriages. We had no role model to look to for guidance. We were so desperate for love and attention, we made very bad choices. Even so, we remained close and buoyed each other up, offering consolation and advice to each other when needed. Since we lived so many states apart, our phone bills were probably pretty high, but we needed each other because that’s all we had ever had. Finally, we both grew emotionally to a point where we knew we had to end our marriages in order to have any kind of peace in our lives. We did all of this ourselves, without help from other quarters. We learned enough together to make excellent choices in men the second time around.
The half sister married and had children. Half sister has no problem asking for money/material things from her parents, so mother of course spends an inordinate amount of money on those grandchildren. Hmmm, I wonder if she knows that she has 3 other grandchildren and 2 great-grandchildren?
So — who had it better? The child given money and attention without question, who never had to fight or work for anything? What kind of message was sent to her? That her life will be rainbows and pots of gold? Or the other two sisters, who paid their own ways through life, both monetarily and emotionally, knowing that even though it was the harder path, it was the right way?
After re-reading this post, it almost seems like I am trying to manipulate you into feeling sorry for the two sisters. This is very much not the case. The two sisters are happier now than they have been in years, and have left as much of that other life behind as is possible. If you must feel distressed, direct it toward the step sister — she hasn’t grown up at all, thanks to her parent’s “money”.