Wednesday, February 28, 2007
Tough Love
As if this moving process weren't difficult enough for us, Oronzo's first oldest sister (to be referred to as Paige) has taken it upon herself to try to administer some "tough love" to Oronzo, in an effort to convince him that he's making the wrong decision in leaving.

I won't get into all the specifics, but she came over yesterday wanting to talk (while I was at work) and basically told him that he was giving up too easily on his consulting business, that he needs to learn how to "tighten his belt" and make more sacrifices (i.e. get rid of cable & Netflix) so that he wouldn't have to move, that she's worried he'll hate NE and within 2 years want to leave, and that she's worried our son will be like a "military brat" and be drug from state to state as Oronzo tries to find a job that he likes.

More was said, hurtful things, all in the name of "tough love." Paige felt as though it was necessary to say these things to Oronzo in an attempt to prevent him from making this "mistake". Oronzo sat in silence as she spewed her opinion. He calmly told her he disagreed with what she was saying. Paige ended the conversation with, "I think you should reconsider your plan, but of course, I'll support your decision either way." Well, that support is obviously lacking, as far as I'm concerned!

Oronzo and I were up until the wee hours of the morning going over what Paige said to him. He asked me if I agree with her about some of the points she was trying to make. I told him I did not!

I must say, I'm angry! I'm angry that Oronzo's sister would refuse to credit us with the intelligence to look at every angle of our situation and to carefully make the decision that we felt was best for our family. I'm angry that Paige would think it's okay to try to tear my husband down in the name of "tough love". I'm angry that Oronzo's not more angry. After we talked it through, he's resigned to just let it go.

I know I need to let it go too. She's hurting right now because we're leaving. She's enjoyed having the opportunity to get to spend more time with Oronzo and with me, since we moved back here 2 years ago. She's envisioned our sons (her son is just 7 months older than Snuggle Bug) being raised together more as brothers than just cousins. I think she's feeling abandoned.

Despite all of this, I think she's taken the totally wrong approach. I wouldn't have minded if she would've asked, "Have you thought of this, this or this?" Then Oronzo could've kindly told her that we had indeed though of all these things. Instead, she decided to belittle Oronzo and his decision.

Ugh!! I'm so tempted to have my own conversation with Paige to let her know how little I appreciate her tactics! I guess I'm afraid that would only make things worse.

What would you do?

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6:23 PM

At 7:51 PM, Blogger Tricia said...

I wouldn't confront her about it. I'm sure that she does not realize how hurtful she is being (not that it makes it right) and she is just trying whatever she can to get you to stay. When a very close friend was preparing to move three years ago, I cried and cried and tried everything I could think of to get him to stay - including second guessing his decision and citing all the ways he was wrong about it all. One night, I woke up in the middle of the night and clearly thought, "Let him go". I know that I was in pain but I realized then that I was causing him pain as well - moving was in his family's best interest even though it was difficult and so sad. I'm thankful that he understood it was my pain talking and has forgiven me.

At 8:15 PM, Blogger Trisha said...

Confronting her might make a hard situation even more difficult. Realize that this is hard on all people in your family, not just the three of you and try to help your SIL understand that while you are moving away, you will still keep in touch and visit as often as possible. I think now is the time to speak softly, instead of giving yourself another headache.

At 8:16 PM, Blogger Joyful Days said...

I am so sorry you are dealing with this. Moving and changing careers is hard enough without feeling attacked.

We have had family members "sharing" unrequested opinions. What we've found works for us is whoever's side of the it is, gets to make the final decision on how the matter is dealt with. I would trust Oronzo (and God) to deal with it.

Praying for you and your husband to get through this.

In Him,

At 8:18 PM, Blogger Kili @ Live Each Moment said...

Sorry abou this.I agree I wouldn't confront her.

At 10:15 PM, Blogger Tracey said...

I'm sorry... I agree, that she's just reacting in anger from her feeling of abandonment. I would be doing whatever I had to do too if my sisters were thinking about moving 2 states away. Makes me shudder, just thinking about it...

Maybe a letter from Oronzo and you letting her know that you both love her a lot and that you understand why she was so pushy (use a nicer word, of course) about staying.

At 5:21 AM, Blogger Laura said...

I'm so sorry you are going through that situation. I guess she's just sad that you are leaving and as she will miss you a lot she's trying to change your mind. Of course she could approach the subject with other words, but she's afraid of losing you.
Have a nice conversation with her, explaining that you all love her, and that you will also miss her but the move is "on" and she should be happy that you are trying to have a better life.

At 5:45 AM, Blogger ChupieandJ'smama said...

I would let Oronzo handle it and completely stay out of it and pretend like you weren't even aware of what took place. At least that's how I handle all of the poisen darts that are thrown in the direction of our family in the name of "family concern" from my hubby's family. Whether she had the conversation out of real concern or out of some need to control, the two of you confronting her will only make things worse (in my opinion). My hubby can't let things go and eventually must confront the situation which ends up in an argument. I always tell him to say "We understand your point of view and will take it under advisement. We will make the best decision we can for our family" and leave it at that. Yes, it's hurtful. I've had to forgive and forget many hurtful things since hubby and I have been married and some of them are very hard to forget. BUT, they are his family, and my childrens Grandparents and Aunts and Uncles so I do the best I can. Being family doesn't give anyone the right to overstep bounderies, but sometimes it makes it easier for them to just plow those bounderies down. Good luck with everything and I wish you all the best. I hope his sister (and the rest of the family) can respect your decision and just wish you well.

At 7:47 AM, Anonymous T said...

Every time I've stepped in to talk with Honey's family after they have hurt him it always made things worse.
It sounds like you know the source of her words... sadness at knowing people that she loves will be moving miles away from her. Give her time to grieve and adjust.

At 8:31 AM, Blogger Magi said...

I agree with everything said. Let Oronzo handle it and understand that though what she said was hurtful, it's because she's reacting out of fear and abandonment. It's hard to take it sometimes, but it would be the right thing to do. I am speaking from experience on this one.

At 9:18 AM, Blogger AMH said...

Hmmm.... tricky situation. I think it was pretty disrespectful of her to approach him, without you there. And to question your well-thought-out plans. I only know you through your blog, but I can see that you and Oronzo do NOT take major decisions lightly-- you guys seem to really do your research and consider options and make wise choices.

She is clearly hurt that you guys are leaving but definitely took the wrong approach, and in the end will only alienate herself if she is not careful.

Good luck and try not to second guess yourself....

(and hey, there's only so much belt-tightening you can do... )

At 10:16 AM, Anonymous Becky said...

What would I do? That's tough. I would probably NOT confront her. I agree it would more than likely make a tough situation harder on all of you. I think you are right in thinking that she is feeling abandoned. But, this is just another thing to make you doubt your decision...IMHO. You know why you made the decision to move and you know what is best for your family. I would just say - don't second guess yourself, try not to be angry with so that you can see things from her perspective, and pray. Pray for her and for your relationship with her. I do think she was wrong in the way she handled the situation and it would have been better for her to sit down with both of you to talk about it and not belittle her brother. I'll keep you in my prayers. I know this is hard for you, but you know you are doing the right thing. {{{Hugs}}}

At 12:13 PM, Anonymous Ann said...

So sorry you are dealing with the intensity of emotions in this way. Maybe try to think of it as an expression of the intensity of her love for you and your family - yes it came out sideways and up side down, but like you, she's doing the best she can to do the right thing.
Also, I am impressed that you and Oronzo reviewed all of her points. It shows a willingness to listen and give her some credibility. But if after examining your hearts on her every point, you still know that you are making the right decision, then her 'tough love' has only served to confirm the decision, hasn't it? And in a way, it has served a purpose then, since you had still been 'wavering' just the other day. Now you are more sure. Praise God for that!

At 12:23 PM, Blogger DeAnna said...

Wow! That is definitely not the extra stress you were needing right now. :) I agree with everyone else, I wouldn't confront her, it would probably make your time left in the same state worse on everyone. I'm sure she is just disappointed like you said that you guys aren't going to be so close. I like Ann's thoughts that this might have been a way to help you become sure about your decisions!! Hope everything else goes smoothly for you!

At 2:09 PM, Blogger Jill said...

I can see why you're upset. I would be too! But I'm not sure confronting her will solve anything. If she keeps it up, maybe you'll need to nip it in the bud, but as long as it's an isolated incident, I think the best thing would be to let it go. Still sucks, though!

At 3:55 PM, Blogger Awesome Mom said...

I hate it when family sees fit to interfere with you and your family. If I were in the same situation I would just ignore Paige and do what I had been planning on doing in the first place. If any is going to say anything it really should be between your husband and his sister since they are related. When inlaws start getting involved with inlaws it can get very ugly very fast.

Personally I don't really see moving around a lot as a totally awful thing since most people tend to move around a lot any way.

At 4:40 AM, Blogger Pamela said...

OW, moving effects all of our loved ones around us, as you have so thoughtfully said yourself. We all make mistakes when guided by our emotions. It's amazing how much more level headed and clear we can think when we sleep on it, so to speak. Try not to let your emotions compile the already heated situation.

Your family will have enough stress as it is with moving, and you need to focus on making it a positive experience. :)

At 7:38 AM, Blogger Kathleen Marie said... heart goes out to you. That must really sting. I think she was acting out in manipulative desperation... When all else fails try to manipulate.

I am so sorry you are hurting and I certainly don't blame you but "bite your tongue!" I know that would be very hard for me.

When we moved to SD people thought we were "crazy", "had lost our minds", "were doing the wrong things", "how could we do that to our children"...rough!

I am praying very hard for you, that God will give you the peace that surpasses all understanding in the midst of all the chaos of moving.

Only you and your wonderful hubby know what is best for you family AND most importantly God has promised to BLESS your decision.

Many hugs! xo

At 8:51 AM, Blogger Michelle said...

I'm so sorry for the way your SIL addressed the moving issues with Oronzo! I think you're right in the fact that she is hurt and upset that you're moving away and this was her way of letting her feelings out, but she sure didn't have to go about it the way she did! I wouldn't confront her by yourself, well unless you two have that close of a relationship, but maybe if you want to discuss it have both you and Oronzo talk to her together. Moving is hard on everyone, but she has to know you guys are doing this as a team and what's best for your own family.

On a side note: Joe and I both grew up as "military brats" and I think we turned out ok :)

At 9:19 AM, Anonymous chelle said...

awww moving is so hard on everyone. When we moved away we did not have children. Even still I know my MIL had to bite her tongue ... now she suffers in silence that we are so far away.

HUGS! I am sure your SIL is just hurting (and not thinking about how this would make you guys feel)

At 12:20 PM, Blogger Barb said...

For the sake of my husband, I'd let it go. I wouldn't confront her. She so obviously overstepped her bounds, she probably knows she made a mistake. For the sake of family peace, I'd just let it go and hope she eventually realizes you two made the best decision for your family.

At 5:33 AM, Blogger devildogwife said...

As difficult as it may be, you need to let it go. Confronting her wouldn't solve anything, and it could (and probably would) create a most hostile environment.

Hopefully, in time, she'll realize that she was wrong in how she handled the situation, but for now, you need to be the bigger person.

For now, drown her in kindness and love. (((hugs))) I know it's not easy. I've been there.

At 6:15 AM, Anonymous Mieneke said...

OW, that's a toughie. Although Paige probably spoke from the heart, the way she went about it was less than respectful.
Personally, I feel like you would be well within your rights to have chat with her.
It doesn't have to be a heavy "confrontation" but you certainly have the right to express your feelings on the matter and to emphasize the fact that you DID look at this move from all angles. The fact that what she said, would imply that she thinks you have less consideration for your own family than she would have, would make my blood boil as well, but I also think that the main thing to remember is that she was probably acting rather impulsively.

She needs time to adjust to the idea.
I think a chat to clear the air, would be a very good idea.. Letting things stew seems like a very unhealthy idea to me..

wishing you the very best of luck!


PS: Your letter went in the mail today. I will pop a quick e-mail your way again tonight.


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