February 21, 2011 by David Gillaspie
He’s Bad, Really Bad
What happens when things get sideways?
Throw up your hands? Blame someone?
Or do you report the problems to authorities?
Here’s a solution I let slip by: If the problem is a family member and the authority is your Mom, try and be a man and keep it to yourself.
To be accurate, I went the extra mile.
Readers know how much I appreciate family. The main reason I live in Oregon is to be near family. I didn’t want to be a once-a-year-visit guy, or phone-call guy.
You know who I’m talking about, the relative who swoops in and charms the heck out of everyone then leaves. The fun guy.
Instead, I’m the show-up-guy. And I’ve shown up when invited.
The flip side to show-up-guy is feeling like you have to invite them to everything.
If you are show-up-guy and you don’t get invited to family related events, what do you do?
Take it, and shut-up. That’s my advice. I didn’t take it and I didn’t shut-up. Instead I pushed for an explanation, got an answer, and called BS.
Bad move. But one I felt I had to make.
When a family member doesn’t invite you to one of their family events because they don’t feel they have enough self-control to avoid some sort of self-described ‘explosive event’ with you, take the hint and shut-up.
When said family member lets it be known he carries a gun on a concealed weapons permit, take the hint and shut-up.
If you can’t take the hint and shut-up, at least don’t talk about it with your mother. She may not see it your way.
If you do talk about it with your mother, don’t try to make yourself look good by talking other family members down. This isn’t a time for truth and justice.
If a family member shunned your mother for a decade, don’t bring it up.
If a family member sides with another family member who shunned your mother for a decade, don’t bring it up.
You are the show-up-guy. You show up and listen; you show up and help; you show up because you care, not because you’re trying to improve your rank in the family tree.
Just know that knocking others down doesn’t make you stand taller. All it does it make you someone who points out flaws in family members. No mom wants to hear that. Mine didn’t.
What do you do that gets you uninvited to family members’ events that other family members are invited to?
1. If you’re an ex-con with a record of heinous crimes, don’t expect an invitation.
2. If you associate with dirtbags and lowlifes, don’t expect an invite.
3. If you have mistreated small children and animals, your invitation is not in the mail.
4. If you have treated family members like trash, don’t wait up for your invite.
5. If you’ve ignored family members as if they have the plague, no invite to anything.
6. If you are in the grips of an untreated mental disease, you’re staying put.
7. If you have a family member who bullies your wife into sitting in the car to avoid hearing more bully bs, and you call them on it, don’t expect an invite.
Maintain your dignity and say things like, “It’s a free country and everyone is free to do as they choose.” If you get your feelings hurt your mom probably won’t care if you express it by ragging on other family members.
In other words, grow up. You’re not getting invited to family events because you’ve alienated family members. Family members don’t stop and visit because they are uncomfortable being around you.
Finally, with all that said, admit it yourself: you don’t care that much if you’re invited anywhere to family events, or that no one stops by. You just want to show you care enough by ruffling a few feathers. If they are you mother’s feathers, don’t ruffle them.
Face it, if you did care, you’d take the family member bullying with ‘well, they’ve always been a bully and they won’t change.’ You’d accept the sleaze element with, ‘deep down they are decent people.’
Then you’d look in the mirror and ask “Who is this bad man? Say hello to the bad man.”