« Hats off* to the mothers | Main | My family »


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Well, first to comment, I'd better make this good. Unfortunatly I really don't know what to say. Unfortunatly, it doesn't matter if you are family, sometimes you still drift apart when you lead separate lives. I think the most important thing is to be there for each other and make sure the kids know the joy of having family - I don't see a lot of my brother (long story)but my children do have regualr contact with their cousins.

It's certainly hard when you begin to realize that your life no longer meshes well with the life of someone you love dearly. I'm going through something similar myself right now. It hurts me to think about it, because I alternate between sadness (at the feeling of loss) and anger (dammit, why can't we just go back to the way we were?)

I think that it's natural, as lives take different paths, for relationships to adjust accordingly. I know that doesn't make you feel any better (and I haven't entirely accepted it myself), but I'm glad you're able to write about it. Getting it out sometimes makes all the difference.

I don't have a sister, so I can't imagine what it must feel like to have had moments as children, teenagers and young adults where you dream futures that are woven together and then experience a different reality.

I think that the feelings that you've had & mentioned here are all familiar to those of us who've had IF steal our innocence in ways that others cannot imagine. And there are probably ways that we've all cut our family out of our lives because of IF issues that we cannot see ourselves because we are living the hell itself.

Of course you'd love to think that your sister would take your kids in, and you'd, of course, take hers in. But sometimes when live moves in parallel paths with different timelines, it changes us and our views of others. It may simply be that she wants a place for her children that is exactly like what she has created for them. That this friend is leading a lifestyle that more closely resembles the image that her mind's eye has painted for her own children. I think it is sad that she feels this is more important than the family tie, but they are her children. And maybe she knows, ultimately, that you are the kind of sister who in her absence will make certain to play a role in her children's lives despite not being their primary care giver.

I say look at your own life and pick the person/couple that will allow you to sleep the deepest sleep at night, knowing that person/couple would be taking care of Adam and Kate for you. If that is your sister, and she agrees to the role, then select her and make the proper arrangements. If not, then don't. Don't let her choice impact you one way or the other.

You two have a lot of bridges to build to your future, because of the difficulty of living life. Thankfully, you have a strong foundation, with a what has been a recent rough patch. Over the course of a lifetime as sisters, this period of difficulty should be a drop in the bucket, and I hope you will both take the time to rebuild your relationship in a way that works for the new you and the new her.

Now that IF is your past, it still haunts your life, and that is the part that sucks the very most.


I do have a sister and I do know what you are saying. I hope you find a way to resolve this, after all a sister is there to pick u up when u fall apart and from what you say it seems that you have always been there for eachother.

A famous person once said: "This too shall pass"...

My first comment! Long time reader though.

Great post, Tertia. I know the situation. IF has totally driven me apart from my cousin. We used to be close when we were kids, then we drifted apart during our teenage years. We had just started to rebuild our relationship when IF hit me and she got pg. Big secret, I was the last to know. Amazingly I got the news on the same fucking day as my first BFN.

Sadly, in our case I think the separation will be permanent. We are too different, and to be completely honest I think the bitterness from both parties is too big. I'm not sure how she feels, but I feel that the gain of reestablishing our relationship does not motivate the energy it would take.

On the other hand, I have a happier example. My best childhood friend and I drifted way apart a few years ago, mainly because I was very successful careerwise and she wasn't. The discrepancy was just too big for both of us, we couldn't stand being around each other. I really thought our friendship was dead, but we found it again. Suddenly it was just there.

Blah blah, talking too much about me. My point is, I think this is a part of life. You drift apart, or are torn apart - nothing like IF to do that for you. But life is long (hopefully!). Both of your lives will change, and probably you will have more in common and that will make it easier to relate. After all, you two have a very stable base to build on. And it seems that both of you want to be close. You will be again, I think. Maybe you just need some time.

But you've only just had the babes -- months ago...if it took years for you to drift apart and there is no active conflict between you, just space and scars, perhaps it will take a long time for you to slowly fall into step together again...
You might need the grace of time now that you are both moms.

Makes me very sad to read this post as clearly I know both of you and know that you are both equally gorgeous and divine. Love you both madly. MY sister (waves at sister!) went through her initial happy clap phase way back when and that did drive some distance between us. Now I think we've both gotten over it / come to terms with it and it's really not an issue anymore. I think we're really at a point where although we know we have vast differences, we embrace them and there are some things that only we two have in common as siters. Perhaps you just need to have a heart to heart chat - just the two of you? Just my 2c worth.

Oops meant to say sisters NOT siters. Where was I going with that? : )

It is the same with me and my brother... we grew up and were very close... Now, I am not even the godmother to even one of his kids, I rarely get calls, and if I do anything they don't like I feel like they would take my visitation priviledge away... it is so painful sometimes... especially considering how very much I love his babies...

I think that every fight, causes a relationship to change. Sometimes it makes it stronger, sometimes it doesn't. I think that it's not just the fact that you are so different now..but your lives took different paths to bring you where you are now and that also has an influence

First of all, I'm sorry for the distance - and pain- between you and your sister. I don't know, sometimes when there is so much pain, it can be inevitable that there is a rift. My sister was infertile long before I had an inkling that I was too ... and I was most likely clueless around her. We are better now but there is still distance ... but we try to talk. We try.
I have to ask what a clapper is? Is it like saying someone is a "happy camper" here?

The question of who would raise one`s kids in a worst-case scenario is a real toughy for many people, and I have a lot of friends who put off making wills just because they can`t agree.
I have only one brother born only 20 months after me, and yet we may as well have grown up on separate planets. We were never very close -- even when he was small, he and my mother would sort of gang up on me. I haven`t seen him in 7 years, and haven`t even met my 5-year old nephew. Granted, we do live thousands of miles away, and we do call each other and exchange presents for the kids, so I can`t say we`re completely estranged. He will always be my only brother.
But if my husband and I both vanish, our kids will be raised by my best friend and her husband, not my brother and his wife. And my thinking on this completely echoes what Boulder said above -- my friend, an artist with a loving husband and 2 little boys in a big rambling house, is leading a lifestyle that more closely resembles the image that my mind's eye has painted for my children, and this is more important to me than the family tie.

I think with family, sometimes you need to make an effort to hang onto each other. I agree 100% with blackbird so I won't repeat her comment but I would like to add too that with someone you've always been close with, I think your paths will wind around and cross again and perhaps finding a similar and parallel direction eventually. I think trying to stay close says alot though, to each of you, making the effort. 45 minutes isn't THAT far, maybe you could each make a monthly trip to visit the other. Maybe you need to get to know each other again, you are obviously both different people than you were the last time you were close but you are still family, still love each other and both still WANT the closeness. Good Luck!

I'm going to add something that I hope is taken like it is intended. Maybe some apologies need to be made by both of you. Certainly, you don't need to apologize for the way you feel now or felt during your losses, nor should she have to apologize for being pregnant and having her children BUT maybe you both need to acknowledge how these things made the other person feel and tell each other exactly what you were both feeling at those times. You stated on here that you were upset but didn't blame her. Does she know that you didn't blame her? Maybe she blames herself? I'm getting long winded. It sounds like you two are able to talk about hard things. Maybe getting it all out there would benefit you both? Again, good luck, and to answer your simple question: with family, I think you don't let the relationship get away, you find a link.

What I've seen with my mom and her sisters has been that, yes, there can be painful periods of separation, no one's fault, but periods when a series of divisions occurs or your lives are in different places, and you either work at it; or it builds up and THEN you work at it; or it builds up but then dissipates over time. And the deal with sisters is that, so long as you both have good relationships with your parents, and a good foundation, you're probably going to cycle around again. There isn't that same anchor with friends.

On the other hand, I've also seen that two of my mom's cousins, thanks to religious conversions, have become very distant from their siblings. But in that family, both parents are now dead. Parents hold siblings together, when they're parents the siblings love seeing.

I'm sorry. There have been times (intermittently) when my sister and I don't communicate, and they're very, very hard.

Maybe your folks should start hosting bimonthly whole-family dinners, just to provide some nice neutral common ground.

Hi Tertia,

My dad is an accountant and an estate attorney. (He has both death and taxes covered.) He has drilled it into my head how important wills are. But there are different things that are important to different people. I wrote a post about it.. Here, http://www.livejournal.com/users/journeywoman71/17601.html

Religion is probably a big part of why she chose this. While I'm not sure what a "happy clapper" is, if that's how she worships, she might think her kids won't see her in heaven unless they worship the same way.

On a more personal level I have a sister and a brother both of whom I love very much. After we adopt, if something happens to us, my best friend gets my kid. Mainly because she will rais the child like I would.

Hope this helps

I wanted to say that I'm going through this with my mother and 2 of my sisters. They were not supportive of me through IF and my mother actually told me once that she was happy one of my cycles failed. I can't even put in to words how much that hurt. My parents favor one of my sisters and her kids are their top priority. They never call or see my 6 month old daughter and they don't even know we're expecting again. (Turns out I was REALLY fertile after having a baby. My babes will be 13 months apart. Who knew after dealing with IF that it would happen so easily this time?) It's terrible when you can't seem to keep a relationship with someone you care so much about. I hope you and your sister can work this out.

I'm sorry and sad for you too, T.

I have a different but related relative problem: I have never been particularly close to my brother, and now that we are adults the gulf has widened considerably. We do the right thing, phone on birthdays, chat once in a while, even say, "I love you," but when we are actually together in the same room, we are oceans apart.

I have always marvelled at people who have "friend" relationships with their siblings. It's something I have not experienced. If I had, and then lost that intimacy, I would be devastated.

What is a clapper?

And is your sister still single? It's hard enough with one, I can't imagine three.

This was such a touching post. I think most women - fertile/non-fertile - can relate to it in some way. So many of us have had relationships that over time have been bruised and battered by our experiences. It is such a dilemma - have we changed so much that it's too late for us to be close again?

in my experience, these things go in waves. You go away from one another, but then you come close. I think sometimes honesty helps, and then sometimes I think just plain starting over helps. You can't forget the past, but you can try to forge a new relationship based on the present. Obviously, you and your sister have had so many things happen since the time you were young and close. Perhaps you can try to just look at the women you are NOW and form a relationship based on that. I have friends that are working moms and SAHM. Underneath, they are just moms. Yes, their daily routines differ. But they both have the same interest deep down - to raise happy, healthy kids.

You and your sister have shared so much. I think eventually you will find ANOTHER kind of closeness. It won't be the same as before, but it may be deeper due to all the things you have gone through.

I don't know - relationships between sisters are a funny business. I think they have an ebb and flow to them. My sister and I were pretty close when we were younger, but had about a decade of being virtual strangers to each other. If you want a divisive issue, how about the fact that I loathe and detest her husband and he returns the favour? We have been at many family events in the last decade and change(they've been together for seventeen years - half her life) and everyone ignores the fact that the brother in law and I haven't said a direct word to each other in all that time. Stupid, no?

Anyway, it's only been the last couple of years where she's started to break away from the "wife, mom and nothing else" life she's been happily living. She's starting to explore the world and see what's in it for her. And rediscovering a relationship with me has been part of that for her. We're closer now than we've been in years. It's not exactly like we're best friends, but we're better, y'know?

So maybe it's a phase thing - she sounds like she's quite involved with all the things she's doing right now, rather than being involved with who she is. It's like acting and not thinking, whereas you're obviously still in thinking mode. This also means that, like me, the separation is going to hurt you more than it does her.

That doesn't mean it's permanent or terminal.

I dodn't think this seperation is permanent. Yes, your lives are quite different right now, and that's ok. I do find it strange that she'd rather have a friend she's only known for a few years take care of her kid than you. But I digress...One day you guys will probably be able to talk about the resentment you both must have felt back in the day and get beyond it. As of right now, you both are only acknowledging that it's there. That's a wonderful first step, but getting it all out on the table will be imperative for you guys to become closer eventually.

So much pain has transpired between you both, in addition to choosing different life paths, it is no wonder that you feel a sense of loss. It sounds like she is feeling it too.

Speaking as a religious fanatic myself, I am very troubled by the idea of who would take my children should DH and I both kick off at the same time--because, you see, even though we love our siblings and there are no sibling issues between all of us (thank G-d), we know that none of them could raise our children with the religious values that are so important to us. Not by a long shot. Even though it sounds strange to some, we would very likely choose religious friends instead of relatives. So all I'm saying is, don't take that part of this whole thing too personally. It really reflects on her religious values and not on you as a person (after all, you are G&D and she knows it just as we all do!).

That aside, I do think that there is a chance you could both reconnect on a deeper, familial level. Are there issues that therapy would work out? Or have you already been able to work that out between yourselves, independent of a third party? If not, maybe see a therapist together (does that sound too weird? I don't think so). If you don't think that step is necessary, maybe just making a concerted effort to spend some more time together, and talk about why she is important to you and why you love her and miss her.

I hope this doesn't come across as assvice. I have a sister I am very close to and it would break my heart if something came between us. I just hope that you can find a way to strengthen your sisterly bond again. And by the way, I don't blame you, as you blamed yourself, for the distance that was created by your infertility. You couldn't help that. Frankly, it just sounds horrible to me to have to go through repeated losses while someone close to you is growing bigger by the minute and delivering healthy babies. So painful, Tertia! I cannot imagine how you got through that. But you did.

G-d bless you and your sis.


You are G & D and you have a huge heart. My husband has a similar issue with his brother who has become very religious the older he gets.

I say this as a way of looking at this possibly through her eyes. I know that you do not mean anything by the "happy clapper"- only descriptive. However, it seems that this is a fundamental part of her life now. If you trivialize that which so strong in your sister, you are being demeaning her with your term-happy clapper. Does she call herself that? She has chosen a different path from you. Just as you say that you chose your path, her path is what is right for her.

For the 2 of you to forge a bond again, you have to respect each other's choices. JMHO.

So many things have already been said about relationships with siblings, so I'm not going to restate things that have already been said.

However, something in your post really hit home with me:
"When you are infertile and someone close to you gets pregnant, it is always hard. For someone who is not infertile it might sound silly, selfish, childish, whatever you want to call it. And maybe it is, but that doesn’t matter, all I know is that it hurts, like hell. It is not that you don’t want them to be pregnant; it is just a constant, in your face reminder that you can’t get pregnant. It’s difficult to explain. Of course when it is an ‘oops’ pregnancy, it is even worse. Oops you’re pg? Oops I can’t get pg."

You summed up every emotion and thought I had while I watched both my brother's wife and my BIL's wife pump out baby after baby and I sat by, struggling to even look them in the eye.

Thank you for stating what I have tried to for so long -- I'm sending both SILs to this post!

For those who have asked:
Happy Clapper = Holy Roller

I myself started to grow distant from my Sis after she had my Goddaughter and fell pg with her second. Partly due to living in different counties and partly because I wanted to have my own babies so much that looking at other folks kids made my heart ache. (And that was before I knew about my IF.) We are closer now. Thank God(ess)! Turns out she didn't like my Ex any more than the rest of my friends.

Much Love from across the pond,
~Adi V.

I can especially relate to the will part. And the not getting along sister part, but it has been life long.

In my ex's and my will, our son would go to his brother - a clapper w/4 kids and a wife who homeschools. EEEEK! I have the reverse issue you do - I, as an atheist, cringe at the thought of my son getting their brand of god. Cringe, I tell you.

Flip it around and I have a sister - 2.5 yrs younger and we've never been close through no fault of mine. I give, offer, straighten out, keep in touch and she's essentially, "What have you done for me lately?" I did finally bring it up to her recently as an explanation of why I've been MIA. Her latest feat is to _perhaps_ finally stop living with the alcoholic man who she divorced 2 years ago. Pitiful what she exposed herself and her daughter to.

I chose the clappers (definition of their overparenting weirdness: they changed their reference to the name of a campground they were staying at from Devil's Fork to Angel's Spoon for the children's over protective sake, so the kids wouldn't be frightened) over my wallowing sister b/c they could handle an additional kid better than my fellow SIF sister with her one.

It is a tough decision for everyone.

I've had a similar situation occur with my BF... but from the other side. I have never experienced IF and have a toddler, while she can't have kids not because of IF but because she has cancer, and the hormones involved in pg would likely the cancer to come out of remission. She is divorced and would very much like to meet someone, but so far no luck. I can feel how much she aches to have all I have -- a wonderful husband, an amazing daughter, an interesting job, sane and supportive parents. It's not that she openly expresses jealousy, it's just that she hurts so much for all those things. We've even acknowledged these issues. But as much as I want to, I can't fix any of it for her, and it so impacts our relationship...especially since my daughter was born. It makes me so sad.


I've had a similar situation occur with my BF... but from the other side. I have never experienced IF and have a toddler, while she can't have kids not because of IF but because she has cancer, and the hormones involved in pg would likely the cancer to come out of remission. She is divorced and would very much like to meet someone, but so far no luck. I can feel how much she aches to have all I have -- a wonderful husband, an amazing daughter, an interesting job, sane and supportive parents. It's not that she openly expresses jealousy, it's just that she hurts so much for all those things. We've even acknowledged these issues. But as much as I want to, I can't fix any of it for her, and it so impacts our relationship...especially since my daughter was born. It makes me so sad.


Oh, and I wanted to add something that was amazing for me, but probably an affront to someone else:

My neighbours in Minneapolis, devout conservative Jews, revised their will after approaching us to be legal guardians of their kids in the event of... you know. They had many, many relatives: tons of aunts and uncles who could do the job! And Jews to boot! And here we were, a non-observant Jew married to a non-observant Catholic with no kids! But they chose us. They knew that we would be loving parents to their kids. They did make us promise that we'd make sure they got the formal religious education, ceremonies, etc., and we could promise that.

It was huge. I'll never forget that feeling, and imagining how slighted their family members must have felt. The kids are all legal age now, and we moved out of the country, so the whole thing went the way of the morning dew. We've got our own kids now, and oddly enough... I'd never choose them. Strange, isn't it?

Just wanted to say isn't it funny how expressions cross the oceans - we use the term "happy clapper here too" I know someone who use to beat up his wife until he found god now we say he went from a "slapper to a clapper"

Tertia, I'm so moved by your post (yet again), and while it may seem a trivial question... I have to ask.

What the effin eff is a clapper??? In North America a clapper is this silly noise sensitive device that turns your lights on and off by clapping.

I'm so sorry to reply to such a serious post with something so inconsquential... but I simply must get the image of your sister and her friends sitting around clapping her lights on and off... out of my head!

My sister and I used to be very close, and as our adult life situations changed, we grew apart. Very apart. We rarely talk anymore, and when we do, it's usually so she can snark at me about something. I keep trying, though. I guess I hope that at some point, we may find a common ground again.

But even when we were extremely close, I would not have picked her as guardians of my (please G-d, future) kids. For many reasons - we have very different beliefs about religion, about politics, about how to treat other people.

I think people change, and even being related doesn't mean you have to like each other. My friends have changed over the years; some I'm still friends with, others I'm not. I just think it hurts more when it's a close relative, with whom we used to be close friends.

I don't know either, Tertia. I wish I did though as I find myself in a very similar position.

I had to smile at the summation of your sister and yourself. When I first started reading your blog, about a year ago, I saw the "drinking, cussing, non-clapping, working career mom." Not usually my type, but there was something very compelling about your candidness and honesty that kept me reading. And the more I read the more I found myself feeling an affinty with you, genuinely liking you, feeling concerned and wishing you well in your life.

I guess the big thing I've learnt from getting to know a 'different type' of person is that the "drinking, cussing... happy-clapping, tea drinking soccer" is immaterial. They are just masks, places where we hang our identity. Beneath those things we are all the same. We are all doing the best we can. And we all just want to be loved. What I like most about you is that you instinctively seem to understand these common denominators and accept that although we are all gloriously flawed, we are still lovable. The warm gentle Tertia can't help shinning through that sometimes tough exterior. It probably always was; It just took me a while to notice. I guess that's what happens with people. It's easy to see the 'flaws' and differences - the things that turn us away from each other - not so easy to peel them off and see the similarites.

Despite your diffences, both you and your sister want to be closer. That's a great place to start.

Thanks for having the courage to allow us to step into your life. You are working minor miracles in strangers lives.

Obviously, you have many different issues to work through here.

When I finally became a Mom, I very much wanted my sister to be the guardian but I also wanted my son to have a SAHP. I asked her if it would be possible to make that agreement and we negotiated it out. We doubled our life insurance so that she could afford to stay home, plus finance further education when she was ready to rejoin the work force, and she promised to be an at home parent.

That was just our solution to one problem. But my point is that communication and negotiations with family can be very tricky. It's so easy to wind up with hurt feelings and distance.

You love each other, perhaps this is just a more distant time. When you feel ready, take some risks and see if you cannot negotiate a relationship that works well for both of you.

Good luck.

I don't know what happy clappers are but I do know what a huge, huge divide religion can cause. It may be more important than she lets on because she wouldn't want to offend you by saying "because you're not a clapper you would not be who I want to raise my children".
That's sad. And extremely sad that she did not jump at the chance to reassure you that she would take yours. My sister is still in college for another 3 years and I am concerned about who else on this planet I could possibly want to raise my kids. Having my sister be their mother- even though we are not particularily close- would be the closest thing to having me as their mother. She was raised by the same parents, holds most of the same values, same sense of humor, and very importantly would be able to share stories about my childhood and my life and what I was like. If she said no.....

I'm sorry. I think probably partially it has to do with some built-up resentment towards you for not being 100% there for her during her pregnancies (which I totally understand, btw), but I'd bet the majority of the problem is the religious difference, especially if this is one of those "all other faiths are damned to hell" religions. Very sad.

I can relate to this. I don't want to repeat what has been said before so eloquently, but I agree that your sister's preference for a happy clapper to raise her children is purely religious, and not something to be taken personally. Have had the same happen to me.

I do, however, believe that the closeness you once enjoyed can be achieved. It will probably take time and commitment. Perhaps things will gradually get better as Kate and Adam grow older and have more contact with their cousins? That is how I've healed my relationship with my sis-in-law. All the best!

I have gone through similar with friends who either did not have kids and could not understand my new 'life style' (or felt threatened by it) and with my own sisters.

With one I felt closer to as we had a shared bond as new mothers (a lot of tensions as teens) but with time our lifestyles distanced us.
With another sister, who is 8 years younger, I feel closer to now that she is a mother. But truthfully, her lifestyle (expat far, far away) also has created some distance.

My guess is that relationships are ever evolving and distance is sometimes natural.

However, having said that, you and your sister sound very close, willing to communicate and with effort I have every confidence you two will be able to have a satisfying 'now' relationship. Pursue it and I am sure it will all work out. You obviously feel the need to do so. (You may get off the couch now ;))

I sympathize with your feelings of regret and sadness. It sounds very hopeful that both you and your sister acknowledge what has changed, and that it's not the way you would like the relationship to be. My ass-vice would be to just be patient, spend time together when you can, and trust that you will grow closer again.

There was a period when I felt I had little in common with my sister, who is 2 years younger than me, but married 5 years sooner, is more of a career woman, and got pregnant 2 years before we did. (I'm also not so keen on her husband.) I was closer to my younger and single, "hip" brother. Now that we are both parents, I have more in common with my sister, enjoy asking her for advice, and love watching our children play together.

I found many relationships changed after our children were born. During our years of infertility, we gravitated to friends who were either childless or their children were older, so they could do activities in the evenings with us, could get together spontaneously, and so on.

Once our triplets were born we were extremely isolated for the first year or longer, and had NO time to seek people out and maintain friendships. Probably all we talked about was babies, too. Some of our friends, especially the ones with no children, seemed to disappear; they had little in common with our newly transformed life. We were not available for significant events in some friends' lives, could not support them when they needed us, and so we grew more apart.

Conversely, some friendships deepened, especially with those who were parents already and could offer advice and encouragement. And over time we made some great new friends, parents of multiples or those with children at similar ages to ours, or in the neighbourhood.

All these transitions took time, several years. And during the first year after the babies were born, I often felt very isolated, regretted that I couldn't spend time with my friends and family as I used to, and I feared I would be left with no friendships at all!

Five years later, I still regret some of the friendships that have faded from neglect and changed circumstances. But I treasure those that have survived the journey, and I treasure our family relationships most of all, and delight in watching our children form relationships with their many aunts, uncles, cousins and family friends.

You are SO busy at this stage in your life, don't feel badly about friendships or family relationships that are hard to maintain. The people who really know and love you will be patient and will still be there for you next year, when your life gets a bit more manageable. I'll bet your sister is one of those who will be there for the long haul.

Best wishes,
mom to triplets, in Canada.
(thanks for the "hats off" - and same to you!)

i have a sister, but ive never met her. i like to imagine if we were to meet we would be best of friends and do the 'mom' thing together.
but the drifting....it is the natural order. my good friend who was 3 years older than i, got married when i was 16 and she 19. we drifted. she was in a totally different place. we couldnt find anything in common anymore. it hurt. 3 years later, i got married. and my relationships with my single friends were strained. because i was different. then i had a baby. now im totally different, and not even invited out with the single friends anymore, because i would rather stay home with my child. it just happens. and we all stay in touch, but its nothing like i imagined. there are no walks with babies, the same age, in buggies, no play dates with those old friends children and my children. and im ok with that. it doesnt mean it doesnt hurt.
i hope you are able to get comfortable with the relationship you do have with your sister! and i also hope it will grow into something better!

Hi all,

A happy clapper is someone who has found their god at a later stage in life and are "reborn".

They are then commonly known as clappers because the eat, breathe, sleep the church and the people in it.

They are also known to clap hands madly and sing ontop of their voices and such....

Very interesting actually...

Tersh, maybe you could do a post on the religions we have here in SA?

Beautiful post Tertia, and I can hear your sadness. I don't believe though, that you and your sister have drifted apart for good. It will take some time for the scars to heal, and perhaps you both have to find a new common ground, because like it or not, you both HAVE changed. But just because you and her live such different lives right now doesn't mean you can't find that closeness you once shared. Maybe you could start with visiting each other say once a month, and getting your kids to become friends with each other. Go from there. I watched your pictures and it seems that her youngest one, Sofia, is not that much older from Adam and Kate.

My best friend lives 200 km from me, and we only see each other a few times a year. She's engaged but is not planning to marry any time soon. Her plans of having children seem nonexistent right now, although she had "an oops" last year, and had to have an abortion (mostly for health reasons but also because she was just scared of how much her life would change). I've been married for 7 years, have a 5 yo son, and 6 miscarriages and am now dealing with infertility induced depression.

However, we still share a similar, wacky & dark sense or humour and that's how we connect whenever we talk on the phone or see each other. It doesn't have to be anything more than that. Sharing a laugh is such a great way to connect with another person. Regrardless of our different lives, we still talk about everything, and try to support and cheer each other with whatever is going on in our lives.

I know you and your sister can become best friends again. You just have to get to know each other again, and find out what made you both the persons you are today.


First, before I read all the comments, I'm going to comment.

I have two sisters. I am the baby sister. There are 16 years difference between me and my oldest sister, and 10 years difference between me and the other sister. I am closest to the oldest sister. Why? Because she makes an effort to have a relationship with me. And so do I. I also make an effort to have a close relationship with other sister. Things are pretty good there, too. She lives just a couple of miles away, but her life is very different. Common bonds seem to help, but not always.

The main thing that I have noticed about myself is that where family members are concerned, I am much less forgiving and forgetting. I mean, I'll forgive them, but the hurt lingers on and I count their past grievances against them when they repeat the behavior. You know? Just being armed with that information has made me more loving toward family members.

And the thing about clappers? Does that mean that they are pentecostal/holiness in faith or something? I am unclear. I used to have a real problem looking down my nose at my next older sister about her not going to church etc... I really had to get over it. Christianity is a personal decision and I can't influence anyone to believe. I'm also called to love, love, love by Christ so all this judging is a moot point anyway.

Sorry to have run on so long, but I can see your point of view very well. Probably from the opposite side. My relationship with my sisters is second only to my immediate (husband, kidlets) family. My next older sister sent me this mother's day card this year...

"God made us sisters....

our mutual fear of turning into mom made us friends!"

Wow- your post really opens the floodgates of memories, issues, etc. for me (and it looks like for a lot of the commenters). Thank you for sharing the ups & downs of your life.

I hope you and your sister can find a way to rebuild the closeness, in spite of the different lives you lead.

I'm in a somewhat similar situation with a friend. We were great friends for years and then she married a controling man who had very different ideas than she ever did and even though they're not together any more, she still has those ideas.

I like to think it's just his influence on her and she'll open her eyes to more things in time, but it just doesn't appear to be happening.

For a while, I thought we would just end the friendship. We are so very different now. I'm not all that different from the person I was years ago. I still have many of the same ideas and ideals, but my family situation has changed (I'm still married and have kids whereas she's been through divorces and she doesn't have a family and I know that's difficult on her).

Now, though, I've found there's still a bit of the old spark of her there. We're not close at all, but I still consider her a friend. There are things we have to be careful not to mention around each other, but the concern for each other is still there even if everything else has changed.

Tertia, this post was very revealing for me. My brother (only sibling) and sister in law haven't spoken to us since we told them we were expecting our second child. They were Godparents to our firstborn and had agreed to take him and raise him if anything should ever happen to us. They had been trying to conceive for a short while at that stage. I was completely devastated (still am) when I realized what had happened. I couldn't believe it. The thing that hurt more than anything was that they cut my son, their Godson, off completly. Never a card, a call or gift from that day on. That was September 2003. I am still so sad to think that they could do that to him. Reading your post helps me see their perspective a little. The other thing that confused me was they were aware of everything we went through to have our son and still decided for some reason to cut us off. So Tertia, thanks for your post, it has helped me understand a little of what they must have felt. I still don't think it justifies tearing a family apart though.

As for you and your sister, you are talking which is half the battle and I think given time you should be OK. Isn’t it funny how our experiences change things in ways we could never have imagined?

Tertia, you are so sweet. What a sweet, honest story. Your personal thoughts shouldn't be so lovely or well written but they are. You're one of my reasons for starting my own blog, but you're well out of my league, just writing about day to day realities. Thanks for sharing about that. Er, what's a clapper?

I wish I had a sister. My mother has three and I am so jealous.

It's funny-- we can't pick our family, so there's no knowing how compatible we will be with them. It hurts much more when the inevitable process of growing together and apart takes place with family-- we think we're 'supposed' to be happy ever after. It hurts when friends grow apart, but it's not the same thing, even though sometimes it is the same thing. Well you and your sister are stuck with each other, and you are so lucky to have each other. You have (I hope) plenty of time for your relationship to continue to grow.

I also think we get caught up in how 'different' we think we are or how others are 'better' than we are. Well I do anyway. I was a working mom with only SAHM friends and I felt so different and stupid and isolated. It's so hard, but it's important to not worry about how you are different or not as good, but to seek out friendships that support you and lift you up. Don't worry about what's not-- well obviously you are a thinking person, you have to grieve a bit. But grieve and then focus on what's wonderful about you, what kind of friendships will be happier and more supportive for you, and be sorry for all those poor souls who aren't as cool as you are. ;-)

I also looked at the pictures of the candles for your lost twins. Definitely brought a tear to my eye. That is so sweet. As we say in the South of the US, bless your heart.

I have felt the same way about my sister lately. She just finished her teaching degree. I think she spent one year as a sahm. I on the other hand have spent four years as a sahm but due to the Bush Co. economics I've had to go back to work.

I feel the pull. We don't have much in common. We were also pregnant together her daughter was due before my son. Then I had my son 10 weeks early, before her. While she was having her beautiful healthy daughter I was sitting in a hospital waiting for my 2 week old baby to come out of surgery. He died two weeks after that. My sister brought her to the funeral. It took all I could to hold down my rage. I still have a hard time being around my niece and it's been six years. I've moved passed it. After that things have never been the same. My sister told me about a year ago her SIL would get her kids. I always assumed I would.

It's diffucult wrapping your brain around things like this. How could you be so far from someone so close to you? I miss her. I miss how close we were. I don't have girlfriends. She was my only friend.

I know where you're coming from. As you know life is short. I'm trying to move passed our differences and build our relationship back up. Hopefully it will work!

The comments to this entry are closed.


  • Medsitters Au pairs

More Ads

| More


Bloggy Stuff

  • Living and Loving

  • SA Blog Awards Badge

  • Featured in Alltop

  • Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape

  • RSS Feed
Blog powered by Typepad
This is the Reviews Design