This morning, after my brother announced he and his woman were planning domesticity, he did what he always does.
I asked him if he thought he could handle the responsibility of being the domestic partner of a woman with a small child, and he proceeded to rip me to shreds. All I did was ask him if he was sure he knew what he was doing. Somehow the conversation devolved into him complaining because I don’t clean his messes, and that I treat him like shit. I mean, I wasn’t accusing him of anything, just asking a question. I have made it very clear I am not a domestic goddess, and I will be damned if I clean up behind a grown man.
Now, between me and you, my brother is a mooch. He’s a musician, a very talented one. I have spent the last ten years of my life, feeding him, keeping the lights on, keeping the roof over his head, kept him in guitar strings and picks and much other manner of support. I have done it both willingly and unwillingly, and my brother has been a drain on me emotionally all my life and financially since I started working regularly.
He also has a dark side that I don’t really like. There was a time when I saw him starting to slip into alcoholism and it was like I was shouting to everyone that this was getting bad, and everyone just kind blinked.
Also, my brother has a hard time admitting he is wrong about anything, never owns his dirt. I do not trust him, because I have seen him become violent and destructive and as long as he and I come into daily contact, or are in a situation where we are living together, he will beg me for something in one breath and call me a cunt in the next.
He screams at me about my faults, but I notice how he manages to very conveniently project some of his emotions and feelings about himself onto me.
Okay, okay, okay…. so for the last three or so months he and I have been living in our family’s house. He has really not changed much, he’s still a slob, he still leaves all the lights on, the fans on and leaves the house (I suppose when you don’t have to pay the bill, it doesn’t matter about those things); he still piles up the dishes, and complains that I don’t wash and clean behind him; and worse, I am still being called a cunt almost everyday because I just happen to make an observation or refuse to give him money or some other crime in his eyes.
The last year I was living in Barbados, I moved out of my mother’s house and scrambled to pay my rent every month, just so I wouldn’t have to deal with that kind of shit. I have actually tried to move away from my brother on a number of occasions, but he’s been dumped on my by my mother, we’ve been trapped together because of unemployment or he’s followed me, as in the most recent case, from one country to the next.
There is his resentment I have had to deal with, because I won’t let him come and lie down on my bed and watch my TV — which has my DVD, VCR and Cable hooked up to it. He never seems to understand that I think if I have to pay for it, I should be able to watch what I want. If that happens to gel with what he wants to watch, then cool, but taking my remote and refusing to relinquish it, is not cool.
For a long time, I felt guilty because I resented having to pay my brother’s way, feeling really foolish because I would let him manipulate me about a great many things, because in my opinion, not all these battles can be won or are worth fighting.
However, he has almost never worked at anything besides music. Even when he’s paid well for his work, he never pays me back what he owes me, he never contributes to the household beyond the merely superficial, and never, never does he think I should not feel resentful to be consistently forced into these situations. He thinks I ought to just do these things without a word, without any thought for my own situation, just continually allow him access to everything I have AND take him cussing my ass everyday.
The thing with my brother is, like most people, he doesn’t handle change well at all. Whenever I assert my disgust or anger or frustration about the things he is doing, somehow he manages to turn it into an ‘I hate him’ conversation. If I move out, move away or whatever, he can be very, very, very nasty to me.
I suppose I might feel different if he was nice to me, you know. If he was supportive of my life in someway. In reality, he doesn’t really care about my life, like what’s happening in it. He can’t, because he hardly asks, and when he does I realise, I don’t trust him enough to talk to him, because I know somehow the conversation will end up centred on him and his problems.
However, he only ever does things for me if he profits from it in some way. He doesn’t seem to understand why I feel used; why I keep trying to get away from him. I understand why he keeps following me, good victims are hard to find. I am NOT a victim anymore. This is why I have been plotting my escape.
The funny thing is, a couple of months before he came down here, I had a reading done, because he was in Barbados and the whole family thought he was losing his mind, including me. He was in a serious emotional crisis, so I asked for a Divination to be done and they saw the whole situation; the things that were bothering him, effecting him. They also saw him coming here and finding someone and settling down.
Then he comes, meets this girl, and for the first time in my life, I saw him being affectionate with a woman, being kind and considerate, and stuff like that. My mother and I have rarely benefitted from the gentleness he has dealt in with this woman. I have watched and observed, and there is this feeling that I should just wait for the other shoe to drop.
Karmically, I think my brother thinks I and the whole world owes him something, when in fact no one owes him anything at all.
I think he’s latched on to this girl because he thinks her stability can somehow save him from himself. I hope he is right, I hope it works out. I guess I’m grateful because at least now I can go on and live my life and have a little rest from his bullshit for a while.
It’s not like I wasn’t planning to flex…. I have been. I had reached the limits of my endurance with my brother. I just can’t be in a relationship with someone in my opinion, has only a superficial respect for women, and hides his fear of women behind some pretty fucked up behaviour.
Now, I am hoping that this woman can mature him, and teach him some things that I can’t. I hoping this relationship can teach him how to put other people’s needs above his own, and what contributing to the life and well being of other people is a two-way road. He seems to be willing to try to be a man for the first time, even if it’s only reserved for his relationship with her.
I don’t think he’s a bad person, but he is fundamentally arrogant, quite self-absorbed and selfish right now. Maybe this woman will teach him some things he really has to learn.
I have had fucking enough.
When I move, I think I’ll keep my address secret for a while.