Toxic Family

How do you deal with toxic family members? In particular those who dismiss and judge you.
:grimacing:

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I remember a phrase that has been going through one side of my family and use it often, ironically against them. “When I’m smiling at you, I’m telling you to go to :construction:e||”.

On a more serious note, I try to avoid the toxic people in my family as much as possible. When I do have to see them, I try to put on my customer service face… keep calm, act polite, smile and don’t get to personal when talking to them. I try not to talk with them about anything that I wouldn’t want them to know. I also let them do most of the talking, giving non-commital answers until I can make a gracious exit.

I also remember that, as they don’t have all the facts, their opinions have no bearing on my life. Everyone has an opinion and wants to give it, but only those closest to you who you trust have opinions that hold any bearing in your life.

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Thank you for the advice. I will use this. I think I’m going to have to detach. I think that’s the best way in not getting hurt.

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By the way, I am dismissed by over half my family simply because I was born female. The toxic side who dismisses me are also the ones who judge me when I do come across the thought process.

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It’s basically someone who in my family who doesn’t reciprocate the same amount of empathy or listening that I do. It’s literally such a one sided relationship. And then it turns to insults and competition. It’s awful to be honest.

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I can understand that. I’m sure you’ve read (or at least seen) bits and pieces of my awful relationships on here. It took me a long time to figure out how to detach only because I don’t have a worthwhile support system. You need to watch out for you and your mental health. Take whatever steps you need to to protect you and who you are. Know that you always have a support system on here who are willing and able to lend an ear when you need it.

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Thanks for your wisdom. :white_heart:

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Honestly I’ve gotten to a point in my life where if a relationship is not adding value to either of our lives OR is detrimental to my own or my families well being I just don’t engage with that person any more. I don’t go actively out of my way to avoid them, but I put as much energy, care and time into our relationship as I would with a stranger I met at the grocery store. I’m polite and friendly, and then move on my way.
If another family member or friend tries to drag me into their drama by telling me something they said about me I just simply say ‘oh, ok’ and either move on with our conversation, or let them sit there and bask in the awkwardness they created

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Thanks! Yes I think that makes sense. I should not make myself emotionally readily available to them or emotionally open to them.

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Thank you for posting this. I needed it & would never have had the courage!!!

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To quote Supernatural, “Family don’t end in blood.” [name_f]My[/name_f] chosen family (aka friends) is a toxic-free zone. Venting to each other and maintaining a healthy relationship with them keeps me sane.

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That is absolutely ridiculous. I’m so sorry this happened to you and happens to girls around, it made me mad just reading this.

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I also echo this! And I’m really sorry that you have to endure that. Honestly, if anyone wants to use this space to vent about toxic family members then please do so. Mental health is important ( speak for myself ) as obviously this can all affect our mental health in one way or another.

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One thing I try to practice is reminding myself that I am not responsible for their satisfaction. Whether they are unhappy about me or something in their own lives, that is their business and I don’t allow it to infiltrate my life any longer. For too long, I put up with manipulation, codependency, unhealthy behaviors and abuse because “they’re family” or I felt like I had an obligation to be the “bigger person”. I lost peace and shed a lot of tears over this. It continued even after I moved out for good. At one point, I was talking with a friend about it and I realized how absolutely absurd it all was. I’m a grown adult. I pay my bills. I live on own. I have my own family and that little unit is where my responsibility is…not by entertaining the temper tantrums of other grown adults…and I’m not about to allow my child to be affected by it.

We are no-contact with most members of one side of our family. You want to criticize us for even breathing? Fine. You will be told nothing unless absolutely necessary. Other people we have a “love from afar but don’t let them close enough to live rent-free in our minds” thing with. These people aren’t necessary toxic but they can get overly dramatic. If they get ridiculous, I will ignore their messages until they calm down. It is ridiculous to have to treat grown adults this way…I swear…some people don’t mature beyond preschool.

I will note that I do also make time to reflect on my own self. Sometimes I am the toxic one. What words are being said? Are multiple people saying the same thing and could that mean I have something to work on? Are they going through a hard time and, while they aren’t behaving appropriately, do I need to just step back for a bit and wait until things cool down? Sometimes people really are just being toxic and it has nothing to do with me but I do think about it occasionally.

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[name_m]Just[/name_m] wanted to say that I feel this, and I understand how much it sucks to deal with rude, judgemental people. I don’t have advice tight now, but I get it. It’s the worst to feel like the one group of people who should accept you unconditionally don’t. Hugs. Xx

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Sadly I have some experience with this, in particular with a family member who’s very hard to avoid because of the circumstances. But over time I’ve learned to let go, and I realize I’m not responsible for this person’s reactions or his feelings. It took me ages to get this far, my brother is so much better at this kind of thing, and he taught me how to let go of certain things and not pay attention to them (he has a very bad relationship with the same person). It’s still difficult sometimes because I often feel responsible for other people’s feelings and want to please everyone. All of this is easier to ignore when it’s someone who’s not so close to you. But I’m making progress.

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I don’t know, but I hope it gets better!

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