It is hard being the bigger person. You know, the one who rises above things, turns the other cheek, lets it all go.

There are a few people in my life who like drama. Lots and lots of drama. Sadly, they are very close relatives so it is hard to say to them: Screw you and your drama, I’m outta here.

I’d like to do that but it would just create even more drama.

We were supposed to have a family barbecue last weekend. All week it had been pouring with rain. Parts of Sydney were flooded. My sister, who was holding the barbecue, had a flooded garden. This meant we would all have to eat lunch in her tiny kitchen because she doesn’t have a dining room or even a dining table. She rang the day before and expressed her reservations about everyone standing around inside. She didn’t know what to do so I told her to postpone it until the weather cleared up.

You would think that there could be no drama created from that situation but you don’t know my family.

They put the Q in Drama Queen.

Somehow I was blamed for the cancellation of the barbecue. It seems I ruined everyone’s fun. It seems I always ruin everyone’s fun.

My family are prone to generalise, to exaggerate. When they see a molehill they immediately want to turn it into a mountain.

Even talking about this makes me feel as petty as them, but I am mentioning it because I am sick of it.

I can’t do it anymore and I don’t know what to do.

There is so much wrong in the world – death, hunger, genocide, environmental destruction. Does it really matter about a cancelled barbecue?

I feel like screaming at them STOP. Stop trying to hurt me. Over and over and over.

Just act nice. Play nice. Be nice.

But they won’t.

So once again I’m stuck singing the same old song.

The risin’ above it blues.

And I think it’s time to change the record.

16 thoughts on “Dramarama

  1. that is just unfair. I don’t think there’s anyone to blame in this situation. come on, I think postponing a barbecue should be no big deal – perhaps they need to reassess their priorities. are they 5-year olds? if they are, I would see why all the dramas


  2. Okay, seriously, can I just say that I want to punch them in the nose? I mean, I know that’s fairly dramatic and it’s petty and blah blah blah. But I do. Square in the shnozz.

    You? Are a great person and screw them for trying to make you feel otherwise.


    Shall I now write soothingly about owning your anger or letting go of negative energy?


  3. Oh for goodness sake. I don’t have any tolerance for drama either Selma. I have a (otherwise wonderful) friend who lives her life in constant drama. And now she’s got two daughters coming close to puberty and, well, DRAMA IN ALL CAPS AND LARGE FONT. Often she’ll say to me, “you know how it is, you had two young daughters.” And I always want to say, “actually, no I don’t!” My friend is kind and generaous but sometimes I think, gosh, she’s just making her life so much harder than it needs to be!

    In terms of family drama (a whole other ballgame), I’m trying to learn how to let things slide off my back. When I’ve figured out how, Selma, you’ll be the first to know.


  4. Ugh, I know how you feel. Been there, done that with hub’s side of the family. Been there with a former friend. Ya can’t win with those types of people unfortunetly. All you can try to do is let it run off your back, it’s hard I know but if they even get a GLIMMER of how it affects you, they double their efforts. You’re doing the only thing you can do, don’t let it affect you and just thank god you’re not like them.

    There are far too many people in this life that are like sharks, they cruise around and when they see a weak spot they hone in on it.

    Hnag in there hon, when judgement day comes, it’ll be them stammering and stuttering trying to defend their actions! Ya don’t have to be a religious person to “do unto others” Too many people just don’t freakin GET that!


  5. I have no time for the drama. Ever since my daughter was born, I can’t even enjoy it for it’s circus like aspects.

    You should just tell them you do control the rain, and if they keep it up, they’ll have to build arks.


  6. *big sigh*

    If you continue you to put yourself in a situation to deal with them, then you aren’t rising above it. You’re dunking yourself into the muck over and over again like an OREO in milk and wondering why the milk is still wet (or muck dirty, I guess.)

    But it sure sounds a lot more noble the way you describe it. 😉


  7. Julia Cameron (Artist’s Way) has the perfect response to this kind of family drama: “Keep the drama on the page”. Whenever you’re tempted to engage in their drama, whenever you feel it getting to you, whenever you feel yourself catching the contagious drama-virus: sit down and write and get that drama on the page. That doesn’t necessarily mean writing about them or the situation, although you can – but channel the feelings, the rage, the manipulation, the drama into your fiction.

    I made it a mantra years ago dealing with my mother: Keep the drama on the page, keep the drama on the page.

    Love to you my dear. XXX


  8. Hi LISSA:
    They carry on like five year olds sometimes. I think what happens is that they have developed bad habits re. gossiping and making negative comments and most of the time don’t realise they’re doing it. Sometimes it’s hard to deal with.

    I sort of feel bad for writing this post because I’m buying into the whole drama thing. I have to learn not to bite, not to react, not to comment when they play up. Maybe I should go and hide under my bed. It’s the safest place I can think of and my laptop gets a good internet signal under there.

    Please figure it out and tell me. I still haven’t mastered it. Friend drama you can kind of walk away from – but family drama is harder. However, where there’s a will, there’s a way.

    Hi CATHY:
    You are right. I have made the mistake of buying into it time and time again which is what they want. It is hard to do that, especially when they involve my son as I will naturally run to his defense. It is definitely a work in progress.

    Hi LIBBY:
    Hahaha. You always brighten my day. Brilliant!

    Hi BRITT:
    You’re right. If I plonk myself right in the middle of things what can I expect but to feed the drama. I need to leave it alone. It can be irresistible though, like a scab ready to be picked. You make a very good point.


  9. I guess that’s why they say that you can’t choose your family, thank God that you can choose your friends! There is no easy way to deal with this, because the folks that mean the most to us are the ones that are able to hurt us the most.
    The only thing that I can recommend is to take yourself out of the equation. What I mean is that you have to somehow step aside and try not to let them get to you. More often than not, what they say hurts us because we have an emotional value attached to how they treat us. Maybe another approach would be to step back, tell them once (and only once) exactly what happened, and let them know that you are not taking any more BS from them. Then, turn around, and get on with what is important to you – your life. Easier said than done, I know!
    Either way I do hope that you are back to yourself soon. You are far too good a person to be treated like this.


  10. Should have left them all squeezed in the kitchen, would have served them right. Damn- family can be a bummer. I would suggest my method- move thousands and thousands of kilometres away from them.


  11. Dramas especially family ones are hassle ‘cos they tap into our childhood feelings – sorry to hear about yours Selma – no solutions here I’m afraid, I just moved far away so I can watch from a distance and not be in the thick of it. Sometimes self preservation has to come first!


  12. Hi DAOINE:
    You wise woman, you. That is such excellent advice. It works for me when I feel really down so I know it will work for family silliness. ‘Keep the drama on the page’ – I’m going to get a T-shirt printed and wear it to family occasions.

    Hi MANOJ:
    They make me feel like I’m five years old again and that I’m being told off for having mud on my shoes. It is important to learn how to separate oneself from drama like that because it can become quite damaging. It is a work in progress for me that I am determined to master!

    Hi LAURI:
    Hahaha. That would have sorted them out. And you’re right – the Northern Hemisphere’s looking pretty good right now 😀

    Hi SINGER:
    Oh, I agree. I don’t know how they do that, but they do. It is unnerving. I am with you completely – self-preservation is the most important thing!


  13. (((HUGS))) I have but one word of advice. I don’t know how feasible it is for you, but it worked for us.


    Then every understands when you can’t make it.
    No one gives you crap over you went to so and so’s for dinner but not here.
    Etc. Etc. Etc.

    Like I said, don’t know how feasible it is for you, but it worked for me. 😀

    Something to play with in your daydreams at least. 😉


  14. Hi TEX:
    Oh, I dream about it. I also dream of not biting when they bait me. It’ll be interesting to see which daydream wins out. 😀


  15. Seriously, does your family really think they would have had a GOOD TIME shoved into a tiny kitchen together? And it makes me SO upset they BLAME you all the time. Sheesh. Im sorry you have to deal with that.


  16. Hi MELEAH:
    I think it’s a control thing really. I don’t think they’d have fun crammed into a tiny kitchen, either. Sometimes I don’t get where they are coming from.


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