Sunday, November 27, 2022

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Grieving widow supported for kicking her brother out of the house

A woman has been praised online when she revealed she kicked her brother and wife out of her home after finding out they had given away her late husband’s piano.

The original poster (OP), known as u/Throwaway69509765, posted about her situation in Reddit’s popular “Am I The A**hole” forum where she received over 12,400 upvotes and 2,300 comments. The position can be found here.

Research on sibling jealousy has also shown that sibling resentment from childhood often carries over into adulthood. A study conducted by Oakland University found that about 30% of people surveyed felt apathy or animosity toward their adult siblings.

As Marlene F. Watson, Ph.D., LMFT, and Training Director of the Ackerman Institute put it Pleasemynewsconflicts between siblings in adulthood often stem from a biased perception of their siblings.

“People are locked into specific roles and how one perceives the other,” Watson said. “Some of it is determined by gender or culture. For example, let’s say you have someone who has been seen as the most successful in the family, sometimes the other siblings see that as an obligation to help them.”

She explained that this sense of obligation, or sense of being owed, is common but often leads siblings to allow each other’s unhealthy choices.

“By virtue of being in a family, there are obligatory bonds that we can have, like showing up for the holiday dinner,” Watson said. “We develop these expectations within the family about what we should get and they don’t go away just because we become adults.”

Some of these expectations can be as simple as wishing someone a happy birthday and as complex as moving a family in during a difficult time.

“There may be a brother who has been identified as ‘the good brother’ or the ‘nice brother’ and that’s usually the person who will be taken advantage of,” Watson said. “As siblings, you have to think about whether you’re allowing the behavior or not.”

She said it is important for individuals to set strict boundaries with their siblings to ensure they are not manipulated and do not allow sibling behavior.

“Just because someone gives you the role of good brother doesn’t mean you have to accept it or have to do things you really don’t want to do,” she said.

But most importantly, Watson said it’s important to save yourself the “angst” and energy of being angry by accepting forgiveness.

“Learn to forgive, then set your boundaries and stick to them,” she said.

In the post titled “AITA for giving my brother and his wife 2 days to return my piano?” the 32-year-old said her late husband died six months ago.

She said that after they met, she developed an interest in the piano since her husband was a piano teacher.

“He taught me how to play it and he helped me buy one (used but still a bit expensive) 2 years ago,” the post read. “I play it every day, after he passed away. I just find comfort in spending time playing.”

However, the PO explained that her brother and his wife have come to stay with her for the past two months after losing their apartment and have often complained about her gambling.

Although she only performs during the day, she said her sister-in-law and brother told her to only perform when they weren’t home and she refused.

“Yesterday I was out with friends for the day then came in the evening to find my piano was missing,” the post read. “Turns out my brother had moved it to a friend’s garage while I was away.”

The PO said she “exploded” on her brother and said he was not allowed to touch or move his piano. The OP’s sister-in-law replied that it was a “last ditch effort” to get “peace and quiet in the house”.

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