I didn’t do it. I am not the one throwing a tantrum, but I AM the one venting about it. Because if I don’t, I’m going to implode and I’m so angry and upset that I might just implode.
It’s July 4th when I’m writing this fantastic abuse of the English language. Yesterday, for no particular reason, Hub suggested we invite my parents and my oldest brother over for burgers and dogs today. Casual, no big deal, just figured since we were firing up the grill and no one had to work, they’d come over and join us. Initially my parents declined because they had other plans, but then called after dinner last night to say their plans got rescheduled and they would join us. No big deal, because we were making the food anyway.
Like a good sister, I immediately called my OTHER brother to invite him and his wife to join us. Again, told him it was casual, no big deal, we were making the same food whether they were coming or not. He said he would let me know.
Pause for some background information.
My brother has a dog that is very nice. She is somewhat skittish, though, and originally was not able to get along with my parents’ dog, Cray-cray Lab. It’s been YEARS (at least 3) since that introduction, and both dogs have matured. However, despite repeated requests, my brother has never deigned to bring his dog back for a better introduction to my parents’ dog. We have offered to involve trainers (and my parents HAVE taken their dog to training specifically for reactive dogs, my brother has done NOTHING with his dog), we have offered to do it in conjunction with my brother and SIL, we have offered to do it when they are NOT around in case their dog was being protective of them. We have offered for my brother to come to play dates with OUR dogs so they could get better acquainted, but other than ONE time that lasted about twenty minutes, that never happened again. We have been overly available, saying we would do play dates at their convenience, both for our dogs and potentially with my parents’ dog. My brother and SIL have either declined or not shown up. Or not shown interest. More than once, including at one point when their dog was in between anti-anxiety medications (i.e. off her meds), my brother has tried to bring his dog to our house during “parties” that Hub and I have thrown–even before introductions between Butthead and his dog. Recipe for disaster, no? We declined that specific incident, but then offered multiple times for play dates afterward (which he then declined).
Background info over.
So less than two hours ago, my brother sends me an instant message to ask what time dinner is. I tell him. He says OK, then asks “What about the dog?”
So I tell him that my parents’ dog will be here (as we always bring our dogs to my parents’ house and vice versa), so it’s up to him if he wants to bring his dog. I mean, it isn’t an ideal situation because there will be a bunch of us moving around a lot in the house, but it’s better than the mother’s day party we had with Hub’s family (and some small children) here, which is when he tried to bring his un-medicated dog last time. He gets mad and says can’t my parents’ leave their dog home. So I said it wasn’t fair that he is putting me in the middle. That I was offering him the same thing as my parents…that he could bring his dog just like they could bring theirs. Work on letting them get to know each other. So he gets madder and says that they should be able to leave their dog at home for two hours ONE TIME so he could bring his dog. And I said it wasn’t fair to put me in the middle. So he threw a hissy fit, said they couldn’t make it, and disconnected from the chat.
I was so angry, but Hub tried to really put it in perspective for me. My brother uninvited himself because he didn’t like my answer. It was my decision to invite both dogs and if my brother wasn’t happy with that decision, it was his issue. He could still come without his dog if that’s what he wanted to do.
I thought it was over, so Hub and I sat down to eat lunch. And the phone rings, and my brother’s phone number shows up on caller ID. Perfectly casual, I answer the phone and greet him, then ask what’s up? He starts all over, “What’s the big deal? Can’t they leave their dog home for ONCE? DOGGIE never gets to join us when we’re at Mom’s house!” I told him it wasn’t about this once, that he and my parents are always putting me in this situation and they need to figure out how to resolve it. That I didn’t want to stop doing things at MY house because they were always going to put me in the middle of this argument. I’m trying to be calm about this, and he’s getting more and more angry. I remind him that we have tried to get him to bring his dog over for re-introduction, but that he hasn’t taken advantage. And he yells at me to say he’s BUSY, he doesn’t have time. And here is TIME for his dog to come be with our dogs. And I say I don’t know what else to tell him. If he wants to bring his dog, bring her. Or HE can call my mother and ask her to leave Cray-cray Lab at home. He practically barks “Whatever.” and hangs up the phone.
Arg. He is so busy. We all have lives, people to take care of, dogs to take care of, houses to take care of, jobs. But he is so busy he can’t do anything except when it’s what HE wants to do on HIS time. Did I also mention that he and his wife are perpetually late to EVERYTHING? Because their time is more important than everyone else’s.
I’m angry with him. I told Hub that if my brother takes this out on my mother, now especially with her going through chemo, I will not speak to him again. It’s not a statement I take lightly. He can be an asshole all he wants to me, but my mother needs all of us. He’s scheduled to go with her and my father for her second infusion next week because I have an appointment with T that was scheduled before the infusions were scheduled. I offered to change it, but he said he could go. If he cancels, I won’t be able to forgive him.
All it takes is a little effort on his part. A little bit of him giving of his time on someone else’s schedule. Again, it isn’t about THIS TIME, it’s about every time he puts me in the middle because he thinks he and his life are more important than ours. I’m sorry if he’s having issues at home, or at work, or with his dog. But he’s not the only one who has issues.
Seriously, if you’ve read my blog, you’ll know I have loads of them.
ETA: Omfg, he called me back the next day, the 5th, out of the blue to hurl more accusations at me. He told me *I* put myself in the middle, and that if I didn’t want to be in the middle, I should have let him and my mother deal with it. I told him I DID tell him to talk to her, but that was during the second conversation and he wasn’t interested in discussing THAT. So I told him it was my house and I was the one who got to decide who was invited, and I had invited my parents with their dog AND him with his dog…so what else did he want from me? Did he want me to invite NEITHER dog, was that what he wanted? Next time, no one’s dog would be invited. What did he want me to say? What I got in return was dead silence, for more than 100 count in my head. Then he said, in a nasty low voice, “I don’t care. Whatever.” and said snidely, “thanks for talking about it with me” and he hung up. WTF. What the hell was the point behind that? He got me all riled up and pissed off again. This was MY house, MY decision who to invite…and he had his own decision to make in response. If he didn’t like my decision, that’s his business not to come and/or not to bring his dog, but it’s not HIS business to question my decision. He has no right. Did I mention he NEVER invites us to his house for anything? And he’s never once invited any of our dogs because he has CATS, too, which would not work out well. Have I ever pissed and moaned that we can’t bring our dogs to his house (for the ONE TIME he tried to do father’s day at his house where MY HUSBAND ended up doing all the cooking on the grill?)…no! Because I know it would be a pain in the ass and it wouldn’t work out. I don’t put him in positions that are uncomfortable for no reason.
OMG I almost went on a rant that would have been horrendous. I have GOT to stop. I totally want to call my therapist and I’ve NEVER wanted to do that before. Shit. Fuck him for doing this.