For reasons I won’t get into, in October of this year my mother had to move out of her apartment – it was an eviction. She had another apartment lined up to move into, but because the tenant of that apartment refused to leave and was causing a mess of legal issues for the management of that apartment building, subsequently my mother had nowhere to go for several weeks.
So she has been staying with us. Believe it or not, because we’ve all been through so much in the past several years, including a decent amount of therapy, having my mother stay with us for an extended period of time has not been an issue.
It’s what she said to me the day she found out items she had left behind in her apartment had been illegally removed and disposed of:
“When your brother finds out, he’ll never speak to you again.”
He’ll never speak to me? To me?
I’m not the tenant who got behind on her rent.
I’m not the tenant who failed to pack so much as a single box, thus forcing her daughter, son-in-law, grandson, and their friend to hastily scramble to empty the apartment of most of the furniture and leave it up to her to figure out the packing and removal of the rest.
I’m not the tenant who didn’t even rent a storage unit for her belongings until that afternoon.
I’m not the tenant who didn’t even pack an overnight bag, also leaving it up to her daughter to scramble to throw together clothing, toiletries, medications, and supplies and a transport carrier for the cat.
I’m not the tenant who then failed to make an execute a firm plan of action for obtaining the rest of her belongings.
And I’m certainly not the tenant who pissed off the management to begin with, which is surely what drove them to illegally empty out the apartment.
(Yes, it truly was an illegal dumping of my mother’s belongings. The ball on litigation is already rolling.)
But sure, my brother will never speak to me again. Because like I said in my last blog entry, my role for so long in life has been that of rescuer or scapegoat. And even though I now recognize the behavior, it doesn’t stop others from casting me back into those roles.
But this I know: it is not my fault.
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Is she at least paying you rent? I thought she was married?
She has helped out financially with groceries (she has SNAP benefits), but we told her specifically to not give us any money. Her income is limited, and now even more limited that her recent marriage didn’t work out (the man in question is in a long-term psychiatric facility). So she did offer, but we said no. We wanted to help because she is family, and we want to help others when we can. But it’s like…grr…well, I once again refer to my “carry your own bag” analogy, you know? We offered to help, not do it all for her.