Hi everyone! I hope you all had a great week! I decided to pause the guest writer series for a week or so to write an entry from me because I have missed writing the entries!! It has felt like forever since I wrote one, but here we are! This week I decided to write about the feeling of guilt and putting blame on Cate.
Guilt is a feeling a lot I know I feel often as well as I know a lot of other siblings feel as well. Putting blame on your siblings for different situations I know is also a shared feeling. My guest writer last week, Lily, touched on the feeling of guilt next week (if you have not read her story yet, read it after this one!) and I decided I want to make a full post about. Guilt is a weird feeling. I personally finds that it comes in waves, whether they are little or a tsunami, but besides these waves there is always a little voice in the back of my head making me feel guilty. Most of my feelings of guilt come from random thoughts about Cate. Cate and I have a great relationship, but there are some aspects about my life and our life that I get upset about and with these feelings I blame her.
I can put a lot of my anger and blame on Cate. Being a special needs sibling and family is a roller coaster of emotions, there are a lot of highs and a lot of lows. During my lows with negative feelings about my home life, I blame Cate for them. As I have talked about in a past entry, I struggle with anxiety and emetophobia (fear of vomit), and I have and still do blame Cate for these negative feelings. I have blamed Cate in the past for not allowing my entire family to go on vacation. I blame Cate for not allowing us to leave the house, now and during this pandemic.
All of this blame makes me feel very guilty for feeling this way. I hate putting Cate in a negative light in my own mind, but I do. I feel so guilty for blaming my anxiety on Cate. I think well if she was not the way she was, I would not be the way I am with anxiety. I try to remember though, despite knowing that a lot of these past traumas of her getting sick around, my brain is wired a certain way and even without Cate, I would still be the way I am. I feel guilty for blaming Cate for not being able to leave the house often because her terrible behavior in the house even before the pandemic. Now in the pandemic, I place a lot of anger on Cate for not allowing me to see a lot of friends. Obviously with covid everyone is limited in who they can see, but sometimes I just feel so restricted because I only see 3 people on a regular basis, and I so wish I could see more. I would never want to be the reason my family sick for selfish reasons, but it is still a feeling of guilt I have struggled with. It is truly a moral dilemma, but sometimes I feel like I am limited by Cate, but then again the world is too. I feel guilty for blaming Cate about not allowing my family to go on big trips together. We can't all fly places or hike up a mountain side. I feel guilty because I know Cate obviously could and can not control the way she is, and she would want to do all of this "normal" stuff too. It is frustrating, but then again, I know nothing else besides this life.
Despite these negative feelings of guilt and blame, I love my life and I am very very happy. Cate and the feelings I have dealt with have made me me, and I would be a whole different person without this life.
The way I deal with my feelings of guilt and putting blame on Cate is by trying to think through my feelings, asking myself why I am upset, and allow myself to validate those negative feelings because they are real, true feelings. Telling yourself you are a bad person and making yourself feel guilty is not productive. The best way I have dealt with these negative things was going to therapy. I talk about the power of therapy often, and I have been asked how I so easily talk about it. Therapy has a stigma around it, and it should not. I have always been told that one of the largest signs of strength is admitting you need help. I have been going to therapy for 6 years, and it has made such a difference in my life. If you need help dealing with negative feelings, ask for help. Talking about these negative feelings helped me validate them and handle them as well. You are not a bad person for blaming your sibling or family member or feeling guilty.
Always remember, what you feel is real and valid. You got this. Thank you for reading and I hope you have a great week ahead! Much love.