When I think of life growing up the immediate memories always turn towards my sister, though not for particularly positive reasons. While growing up my parents were supportive, but always seem distracted and pre-occupied by caring for my sister. She was always on the verge of crisis, and if she wasn’t catered to then there’d be an uproar; this was later diagnosed as bipolar. Regardless of the origin of my sister’s behavior, it impacted the family’s dynamic, and continues to do so. When it is just my parents and me I feel as though I am a favorite because I am easier to deal with than my sister is.
My sister’s temperament dictated time and date of family events; my own birthday dinners were decided when my sister elected to make time or take time off from work a priority. If sisterâ€™s wants or mood was not a portion of the plans the result was spiteful and rude behavior by her at every moment of the outing. Celebrations centering around me had minimal fanfare and conversation because of the landmine field of never knowing what would result in shouting. My parents did become skilled at judging what would cause my sister to begin her spiteful behavior and quickly hushed me. In my parents’ effort to keep peace I developed the feeling that my voice and importance would result in violence and negative attention.