Saturday, February 6, 2016

In which Primo and I fight about Ted, with Primo maintaining that Ted DID apologize so should get a second chance

To which I say, "Bullshit - your brother has not changed stripes and that was not an apology and he deserves nothing from you."

Primo: You have no idea what a relief it is when Ted is not a jerk.

Me: I understand that, sweetie, but do you realize how abusive that sounds? That you are relieved that he is acting with just minimal decency? Not even courtesy? Just less jerkish than usual?

Primo: I dread any interaction with him.

Me: So why don't you just turn it all over to the lawyer? Have the lawyer deal with Ted?

And then there was this:

And I said

Me: How come you can push back so easily on me but not on Ted?

Primo: I'm not pushing back on you!

Me: You are too! You are arguing with me about why you should continue to deal with Ted!

And more

And then

Me: I'm not telling you what to do. You get to decide. But Ted is sucking up all of your emotional energy. You have been nothing but decent to him. You have been polite and have treated him better than he deserves. You do not need to be nice to him any more.

Primo: But I don't want to be a jerk. I don't want to be like Ted.

Me: You don't have to. Just tell him that you will be dealing with Ted'sSon's trust later and that there is no reason to talk now.

Primo: It seems mean.

Me: He has been mean to you. It's time to draw the line.


  1. People like Ted exist on making decent people uncomfortable in order to get what they want. That's what concerns you, and what Primo doesn't yet see. That's because Sly did it too, and to Primo it's just normal interaction. Like having Stockholm Syndrome, it becomes the new normal, but he's been living it for all of his life. And you're just trying to defend him from this form of abuse, but as I said, he doesn't see it as abuse.

    I hope he reads the Raised By Narcissists Reddit, he'll probably recognize a lot of his family in the posts there.

  2. Sly placed Primo in charge because he thought his other sons would not handle the money for his grandchildren well. But there's nothing wrong with Primo managing the trust at arm's length, with a lawyer taking the abuse from Ted. Primo's grew up with this nastiness, but that doesn't mean he has to continue taking it.
    (It does seem unfair he can fight with you, the one person who really, really loves him - and he holds back with TED, who doesn't give a rat's *** about Primo, except to get $ from him.) Dealing with Ted is hard on Primo, so for his sake, too, I hope he'll hire a lawyer. But I am afraid this is not what happens...

  3. Again, this is all VERY late to the game and (hopefully) everything is long resolved, but I assume you all have read up on the symptoms of Narcissistic Personality Disorder? Because once I realized that my bro was an undiagnosed N, I was shocked at how predictable his behavior became -- including the 180-degree switches from cruel and destructive to (fake) affectionate and loving. Once you realize that the Nice Version is really just a strategy, it stops sucking you in.

    1. No, I have not! But I need to. I had not even considered it. It makes sense, though - that the Nice is just a strategy. It is one week before Christmas and we are waiting for our box of pears from Ted - last year, for the first time ever, he acknowledged Christmas to us (I hadn't cared because I have wanted nothing to do with him almost since we met). Primo was all, "Ted sent us a present!" and I was all, "He wants something."

      Sure enough, shortly after spending $30 on some pears (we have a pear tree in our back yard), he sent a spreadsheet detailing about $156,000 in Ted'sSon's expenses from the past several years that he wanted the trust to reimburse him for.

      Which - Primo did not do. Ha.


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