Not In Kansas Anymore...

Click your heels, and see if home is where you hang your hat, or somewhere else inside yourself as this simple, postmodern girl takes on L.A.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Yet another installment of "I Hate To Be A Bitch, But..."


You may not be very sympathetic about this, becuase it will sound like I'm whining like a brat. That isn't where I'm coming from. Just for the record, I don't think anyone owes me anything. This is about the verbal abuse and down-dressing I get whenever something goes wrong ( and about the crazy world view my parents seem to have about life in general).

I've been pretty much avoiding my mom since the debacle this summer where she promised money to fix my car, then took it back, and was just wretched in the things she said, managed to drag my aunts into barraging me with insults, and held out for 6 weeks in paying for something she promised to teach me a lesson ( oh yeah. I almost lost my car over that. MY CAR. The one I paid for and IS paid for? It sat in a lot for 6 weeks while listened to rant after rant about how, in essence, I'm a big ol' failure, since I have a degree and cannot find work. How long am I expecting her to help me? Why am I not like my cousins (her two sisters' kids), who have highly techinical degrees-- in banking (Shallow Fiancee', BTW), hairdressing (SF's lil' sis), or aerospace engineering (my two male cousins), respectively? I went to COLLEGE, and she expects more outta me than my brother (an actual quote)! When I explained that hey, lady, the country has a NINE FUCKING PERCENT unemployment rate, and my degree is of no use, being as its Humanities related and guess what? All that is considered trash now by anyone who has a buck to spare, I CLEARLY am just making excuses. (My brother followed that up- yes, he got dragged into this too,--by me-- because I knew she'd listen to HIM, being that since he has a penis, he Must Know Things--that I'd gotten a degree in some "useless shit anyway". Oh thanks, there, pal. Oh ye of no education, do TELL me and the people I studied under that my efforts were a waste of brain matter . I'll pass that along to all of the professors, curators and museum employees who've had their jobs for 20yrs --if ONLY they'd drop dead or something, I'D have a job, dammit--and whose retirement plans are fatter than yours. What is it you do again? Oh right. You work at a call center. That's a career with upward mobility and a real contribution to society as a whole....)
I told her after THAT conversation I didn't want any more money from her AT ALL. I didn't really tell her why, I just said it was too stressful on the family's relationship, and I couldn't take the fighting. What I didn't tell her was that her money wasn't worth my dignity, sanity and freedom from emotional and verbal abuse. That would have been like trying to explain quantum physics to a 3rd grader.)

However, I called her this morning because there was a missed call from her on my phone, and she and my dad double-teamed me. Yelling, demeaning.....I spent money on my Care Credit card for dental work (which is what the card is for) earlier this year, and they are co-signed on it. I didn't think it would affect them, but apparently their credit score went down a bit because I haven't been able to pay on it, and they went to re-finance the house today and according to my dad, "They looked at us like fools!" ( I somehow doubt the ONE credit card they actually have --which I didn't even UNDERSTAND, mind you!-- would be THAT dramatically affecting their near perfect credit.). They went ballistic. They paid off the bill ($900) and then decided to let me know what an idiot I was for not knowing how emergent the situation was, how it affected them,and......wait for it......, and also for thinking I could get DENTAL WORK done without their permission! How dare I get dental work! Without calling them!! When I didn't know....or even if I did!!! What was I thinking, spending money on dental work!?!?!?

I have no idea what I was supposed to do differently, but these are people who never ever have had, nor currently have credit cards for ANYTHING ever, and never carry debt forward for anything other than the house and/or car. If they were actually poor or in need, I think they would be shocked at their lives.

My dad said, "NEVER EVER get work done without calling us first!" I said, "NO. Cancel the card. This is insane. I had no idea it worked like that, and if I thought you'd be affected, I wouldn't have done it. " And furthermore, I'm not gonna call them when I need fucking healthcare and so they can tell me how awful I am because I dont have the kind of insurance they do that covers everything. Because that's what's next. Hell, it's the subtext in this whole argument.

The other subtext is this: in their minds, if I JUST MOVED BACK, it would all be solved. True, it would be way cheaper, but frankly, as I have come to understand it through my brother and you and several friends, the situation in IL is almost as bad as CA. Lots of unemployment all over and significant budget cuts to public programs, like the one that actually provides my insurance. Hell, my good friend DR, who has had the same job for 17 years is on the verge of losing her job because Local University, where she is a dept. secretary, is cutting back. And you KNOW when that shit starts to hit the fan, it's serious (Her husband Gordy's job-- as an industrial engineer, something you always think is in need-- is also on the rocks. Their company is downsizing and they aren't getting contracts like they used to.)! The fact that my brother is employed and not coming to them for $$ is always thrown up in my face. I hate to point out to them that he doesn't have vision or dental, so god forbid anything happens to him, either. Then again, his teeth are horrific looking and he doesn't seem to care. They must be so proud.

It's like their living in another country, where everyone is insured. In the best way possible. And if you're not, it's your own goddamned fault.

I'm so not coming home for Christmas like I'd hoped. I just don't even want to see them anymore. I don't even think they realize how this so damages our relationship, what little of it was there.

The kicker is I still need like $5000 worth of dental work done. Why wouldn't I? I'm their kid. They both got dentures by the time they were 35. They grew up dirt fucking poor-- my dad especially--and didn't have proper care, but also, they have the shittiest genetic pool in the dental department. Rampant gum disease and the combination of their teeth/jaw structures in one mouth have caused every.Dentist. I. Have EVER SEEN to go, "Whoa. Well...I think you're gonna have some problems." since I was 10. (And I got the good luck in this area. My brother is twice as bad). It's a never-ending fight to slow the slide downhill with this stupid mouth. And they know that, they've seen it all, they've heard the whole thing. But you know, that's just not something they can handle. Like everything else in reality.....

I hope I can get a card on my own or SOMETHING....*Sigh*. They just know how to ruin my day when they want to. Still....

I hate to be a bitch, but...

If you're going to treat people like this and deign to call them family, don't expect them to want a relationship with you. Additionally, you cannot buy someone's dignity or their self-worth, no matter how many checks you write. The fact that you try makes me wonder how you rest peacefully at night.



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