Feeling conflicted and scared after going NC

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Sadie48

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Feeling conflicted and scared after going NC
« on: June 04, 2018, 03:31:38 PM »
Hi,

I just recently joined OOTS after NCing my mother and oldest sister.  I apologize now for the longish post, but I'm curious how people communicate NC and also how they cope in the aftermath.

Long story short:  After my mother visited my new home for two days recently, which was uncomfortable but bearable, I learned from my middle sister (one who has long protected me) that mom and older sister had been gossiping about the visit, and smearing my husband/our parenting.  This happened a couple of years ago -- has been going on for years -- and when I confronted it then, I got an apology from my mother.  But now that it has recurred, I called my mom to confront her. She denied it and hung up on me, before she proceeded to call the middle sister to tell her off (for telling me the truth). 

Bizarrely, my mother later emailed my middle sister, copying me, and talking about me in the third person, suggesting she would honor my wishes and she had never said an ill thing about any of her children in 50 years (a lie).  She tried to throw the oldest sister under the bus by suggesting something was wrong with her (!). That's when I replied with my NC email and an explanation of why.

Since then, I have felt guilty about how this affects the other two siblings, and will affect future family gatherings.  BUT I'm a bit proud of myself for recognizing the denial/gaslighting and calling it out.

Question: should I also call/email my brother (not involved in this but likely to defend his mother) to explain my decision?  Should I send a letter to the older sister since I have not spoken to her directly about this?  As far as I'm concerned, if I don't see either my mother or older sister for a year or more, it would not be too soon! 

Also, I have noticed that since this happened, I'm having physical symptoms:  coughing, fatigue, difficulty concentrating, headache.  This is hard. 

Any thoughts are appreciated. 

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Blueberry

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Re: Feeling conflicted and scared after going NC
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2018, 05:53:29 PM »
Going NC is notoriously difficult, though often very warranted. I'm VVVLC with FOO (family of origin), I've been steadily reducing contact. Every time I notice how unhealthy contact is for me, I reduce a bit more. I haven't announced VLC. I just do the ever-more-VLC. When I first went NC about 15 years ago, I did announce it and explain why, but FOO didn't understand. That seems common too. ( I got back into contact after a number of years and then went VLC again 2 years ago).

In dysfunctional families, denial, smearing and all that are pretty common, so is triangulation.  You are responsible for taking care of yourself, your other 2 siblings are responsible for themselves so no reason to feel guilty. I can understand that you might, I would too probably. We're often conditioned that way by our families.

If you think your brother is likely to defend your mother, I wouldn't call him to explain your decision. My experience has been: I can explain all I like multiple times - they don't understand because they don't want to. Sounds like it might be the same for your older sister too.

For further information, you could also check our sister website OutOfTheFog (for people dealing with a family mbr with a {suspected} personality disorder or imho any family with a history of abuse, gaslighting etc.) in the Going No Contact with a PD parent section: http://www.outofthefog.net/forum/index.php?board=35.0 They have a lot more mbrs than we do and there is an awful lot of experience of this type of thing there. Also some of their resources are really good like Toolbox What To Do and What Not to Do http://outofthefog.website/what-to-do-1/
We cptsd-ers have a separate forum for various reasons, though we can join and post there as well. But if posts there trigger you, please come back here!!

I'm not surprised you're getting physical symptoms, sounds like an EF (Emotional Flashback). Traumatic memories exist in the body, so that can come out as pain or exhaustion.
Should is
never good,
for me.

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Sadie48

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Re: Feeling conflicted and scared after going NC
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2018, 06:18:52 PM »
Thanks for the feedback, Blueberry.  Such a relief to find that people get it.  Seems obvious but I think people with cptsd spend a lot of time second guessing ourselves and need others to remind us that it's okay to protect and take care of ourselves -- even if it disrupts the (fake) peace or disappoints people.

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Blueberry

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Re: Feeling conflicted and scared after going NC
« Reply #3 on: June 06, 2018, 09:17:59 AM »
Oh yes, I second guess myself pretty constantly, join the club. Oops, meant to be healing from it not forming a club  ;)
And, yes, I often need reminders that it's OK to protect myself even if disrupts FOO's fake peace.
Should is
never good,
for me.

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finallyfree

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Re: Feeling conflicted and scared after going NC
« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2018, 08:37:12 AM »
Sadie, I am so sorry to hear what you are going through. It is awful, and leaves you constantly doubting and feeling guilty for their behavior and deceitfulness. What I have learned is you must protect yourself at all cost and put your health and well being first. They will be fine. What I have come to realize is I must only look at the actions of my dysfunctional family, not their words that never matched. That was always the confusing part for me. I so desperately wanted to believe what they would say to my face, but their actions never matched. If you only look at their actions it tells you all you need to know. It is definitely extremely painful and hurtful. What I have noticed is that in time without contact I have been able to slowly heal and feel better. I feel 50 pounds lighter just not having all of their drama in my life. I hope you will feel the same very soon. I take all of the love and kindness and effort I put into those relationships with my dysfunctional family, into my relationships with my close friends who were always kinder, gentler more caring, genuine people. I hope this helps you a little. I know your still hurting, itís all just still so soon. Your in my thoughts!
Warmest wishes,
Finally Free

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finallyfree

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Re: Feeling conflicted and scared after going NC
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2018, 09:56:49 AM »
Sadie, One more thing I wanted to mention is that I took all of my family members and looked at them individually to figure out who I could continue contact with and whom I had to block from contact. The obvious ones that I immediately blocked when I was disowned were the enmeshed ones, the co dependents. Then I had to look at all of the rest and decide through their actions not their words whom I could keep in contact with and whom I would also have to break free from. I learned that all of my relationships with all of them were one way and non reciprocal and they were all just liars and users. Except for one of my sisters. I was the scape goat and she was the forgotten child. She and I both went NC and were both disowned, and we remain close and are attempting to heal. In time you will know whom you can have contact with and whom itís healthier for you to block from your life. Also they will attempt to suck you back in and play on your emotions and kindness. Try to be strong and always do what is best for you!!!
Finally free

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Sadie48

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Re: Feeling conflicted and scared after going NC
« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2018, 01:27:26 PM »
Thanks, finallyfree.  I feel finally free!

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finallyfree

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Re: Feeling conflicted and scared after going NC
« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2018, 02:34:13 PM »
 :applause: Glad your feeling free. Good luck to you!