Monday, 29 October 2007

The family strings

..the strings that only your own family can pull. The buttons that are pushed because they always has been pushed.

O once bought me this book
It is absolutely brilliant and it really changed my life a couple of years back. I have a terrible relationship with my mother and I managed to stand tall in front of her after learning a thing or two about the dynamic of family life *or should I say the "static group psychology phenomena" that is sometimes is."

It's not a "hate your family-book", which one might think, looking at the title, no completely the opposite it explains very logically about the natural evolvment of characteristics within a family.

Oliver James talks a lot about the "niche" that you fill in your childhood family. "The good girl, the joking brother, the laid back little brother, the irresponsible one etc etc.

*So, why am I writing about this, this particular evening? Well it is exactly 56 days left til Christmas and I have booked tickets for my dad and grandmother to come here over the holidays.*

*Back to the book*, All this follows you throughout your life and is also the reason how you can be a high flying business person only to realize that as soon as you go through the door to your parents house, *whump* you are the forgetful silly blond sister, or you can be the most devoted junior school teacher with a world of patience only to be thrown back into the "whining little sister" state again".

And this is why: The more you change, the more your people around you will fight for you to keep the characteristics given to you.

I am the one who doesn't know things in my family. It doesn't matter if I have done 4y at university, been working as a project manager on multi million projects, started my own company from scratch, whilst nursing babies, it never seems to stop amuse my family if I get one little thing wrong in a sentence, when telling a story or similar. Also it is perfectly fine to laugh at my expense day in and day out. I am also the one with the bad temper. My dad can be so ticked off if someone interrupts him when talking, he can sit there and refuse to say a word at a family gathering, just to make a point and because he is fuming. My brother is an aggressive sports player *both in hockey and in golf, but that is sports, right? So he for sure is not bad tempered*. My mother hits the roof if she doesn't get her ways, but I am the one with the bad temper in my family.

Funnily enough, it is always I who help everyone out, so I can't be that stupid? O has never thought of me as someone having a bad temper, he never says: "Well, you know what Mia is like..", so consequently he has never treated me like one and *surprise, surprise* I am very patient when I am with him.

Don't get me wrong, I love my family *well most of it anyway*. It's just the strings they can pull. It completely exhausts me.

Like recently: We have a house in Sweden. Several times we have had to ask the electricity company to send the bills to our address abroad. It works once and then they get sent to the Swedish address again. Nevertheless, we have managed to pay the bills. Until some weeks ago, my dad told me they had cut off the electricity, because of an unpaid bill. This bill was from January or February and we have paid the following bills, but this one we missed.

My dad, who during his 27years of marriage to my mother, never bothered about bills has now joined the squad of perfect bill paying citizens and he was horrified by this.

Consequently, he has been phoning me about this bill, me promising to take care of it. Even though it wasn't a huge amount of money, I didn't have it available on our account to send off immediately. My dad really pressed on about the danger of keeping a house without heating. I would have understood the urgency if it was in the middle of the winter, but in October, and an unusually warm one?

So, I told my dad it would have to wait a week or so for me to sort out the money. I even stopped answering the phone at one point, because all he wanted was to let me know how bad this was and that I really should freak out about it.

Last weekend he called me and told me he had driven to the house *3h drive back and forth* to check if the heating was on *well, I was going to CALL HIM WHEN IT WAS SORTED, WASN'T I??!" And once again, I was told how terrible this was, all the terrible scenarios that was going to happen the to the pipes and the house.

To MY house.

So after a week, I really felt this whole lack-of-electricity-in-a-house-in-which-noone-is-living issue was burning a whole in my stomach, I put all resources into fixing it (O and brother, since I was at school with C). There were money transactions, phone inquiries and numerous phone calls to banks and electricity company, just to get the electricity switched on before the weekend. When it was on again, I emailed dad *who also had an email on Thursday evening from me telling him we will have it switched on before the weekend.*

Then on Saturday evening, I spoke to my dad about the tickets for Christmas (which in itself is a completely new post on its own..) and mentioned the electricity issue again and asked him if he had been there switching it on (since he switched the whole thing off, even though it was off *To be on the safe side..*)

"Well, I'll see when I have time to go there, I might go up on Tuesday"

Tuesday?, TUESDAY??!!! What about the freezing pipes, the whole house molding away? What about the e_m_e_r_g_e_n_c_y?



O said...

*patting on head* o dear, o dear, o dear... I'm sure that you have mnisunderstood it. They only mean well. ;-). In all honesty though, I do prefer it when I get a straight answer, or a straight statement about something. What is really, really annoying are the hints that you should have done something about something. The vague attitudes that you can't confront with less than a "o here she goes again" in response, or a "calm down, I'm just saying..." when you ask for a clarification. Nevermind. They will never change and we will never learn.

Miss you loads.

Mia said...

*gaah* Kom hem!!

O said...

Mm, visst. ska bara... :-)

Lillie dAmour said...

Visst, jag hâller med O, de vill bara väl.
Men jag förstâr dig och det är sâ orättvist, vi är ju för tusan runt 30 och kan gâ pâ toa själva men ändâ sâ ser dem oss som barnrumpor!
*gah tillbaka*