1.04.2008

Surviving my sister's visit

There is a 12 year difference in age between myself and my baby sister. I left the nest when Caralyn was five years old and didn't have much interaction with her over the course of the next dozen or so years. I left my half sister in the parental care of those who both indulged and smothered her. As a result, my sister does not have a single life skill from which to build a foundation on for her own independence. At 22, Caralyn can't make a simple decision on her own.

I considered recounting some of our conversations here for you but I've decided to spare you the gory details. The condensed version (really and truly!) goes something like this: Caralyn can't make a decision about (enter a multitude of reasons here) and asks Elizabeth for help in making up her mind. Elizabeth "indulges" Caralyn initially, feeling much like the big, older, experienced sister that she is and rationalizes the decision making process for her, outlining positives and negatives, etc., effectively giving Caralyn the tools to make the decision on her own. Caralyn can't/won't/doesn't make a decision about (anything) until a grueling amount of time has passed. Elizabeth becomes frustrated with Caralyn and refuses to aide her in the decision making process, effectively forcing Caralyn to make decisions for herself. Caralyn begrudgingly makes decisions for herself but again only after a grueling amount of time has passed and then makes a litany of excuses to Elizabeth when the aforementioned decision goes bad (think "not reading directions on a can of soup and eating condensed New England Clam Chowder without adding milk") instead of just saying to herself, "Gee, that was a mistake." Caralyn doesn't own her mistakes. She pawns them off on others.

That’s not to say that there isn’t room for blame elsewhere. That distinction rests squarely on her parent’s shoulders for not allowing Caralyn to make decisions regarding her own life. I mean seriously, she’s 22! You’d think she could make a simple decision on her own but she can’t, admitting to a sales clerk at a local eatery, “Other people usually order for me.”

Caralyn left for California yesterday. Hopefully she’s returning home with a taste of her own independence. Hopefully she’ll get off her fanny and take control of her life back. Hopefully she’s going to discover something more pertinent in her life than constantly retouching her makeup, changing her outfits because “this doesn’t go with that” or “my shirt doesn’t match my jacket”. Hopefully she’ll reconsider what’s most important in her life right now, eschewing note taking while reading “How to Catch and Keep a Man!” for “Controlling Your Diabetes”.

Hopefully.

4 comments:

Brian said...

Ummmm ouch? lol

Anonymous said...

She was still kind of HOT,until she opened her mouth.....

Elizabeth said...

All references to my baby sister being hot must be submitted to me in writing for consideration prior to publishing. I can not guarantee that they will make it past the censors though.

barnyardmama said...

Not gonna lie--that would drive me completely insane. Completely. I can't stand sitting around waiting for someone to make up their minds--get on with it already!!!!!!