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I refuse to help - period.

The email below is from 2021 and we have had a few e mails between us and with permission, I include it here for you. Edited to keep it short.


I was adopted when I was a baby and have only ever known my adopted parents. My real parents, were according to my Mother, killed in a car crash.

When I was five, my parents - through IVF - managed to have a baby of their own, previously thought of as impossible.

I acquired a sister.

I was then pushed into the background as they obviously favoured their own biological child above and beyond their adopted one.

I noticed it straight away when I had my bed moved into a closet so she could have my room.

It was much the same throughout my childhood from then on in.

I went to state school.

She went to private school.

She had ballet and singing and art classes outside of school while I was offered absolutely nothing at all, just what the state school provided.

It was the same at Christmas and family events. I was always ' the adopted one' and she got all the presents while I got second hand toys from charity shops.

She was sent away on a school holiday to Switzerland - which was expensive and a stretch for 'the parents' while I had to put up with the embarrassment of second hand football boots and second hand sports gear at school and got ribbed chronically by the other kids for this. Academically I excelled, despite a total lack of interest from ' the parents' and a complete disinterest in how well I did at anything. As a clever kid with A's and B's in every subject - not one word of congratulations or pride in their sons achievements.

11 O levels and 6 A Levels all with top marks.

She was clearly the apple of their eye.

It fostered bad vibes between us. Fast forward three decades. Now in my late 30's, out and gay and proud and which has never been discussed with ' the parents' as they would be horrified.

Around two years ago, one Sunday afternoon, 'the parents' visited me at home, which was unusual. All they did was look around my house as if looking for something and when I asked what they were doing, they demanded I give up my 3 bedroom house ( Chiswick - West London ) ) for which I worked hard to buy - with no help at all from them, as my sisters marriage was falling apart and she did not want to move back in with parents and according to them, I should find myself a small studio / bedsit to rent and allow my sister my house, for which I am paying a mortgage and they expected me to continue paying and let her live there for free.

She has no children of her own and no job and has never worked since getting married ten years ago.

I was stunned into silence when they asked - apologies - they never asked - THEY DEMANDED - and when I got my breath back and asked for clarification as to what they were saying was accurate and that I had not misheard - I actually laughed and said how I thought they must be joking.

'The Mother' snapped and screamed at me that she was not joking and that this was to be expected, and when I asked why don't they let her move back in with them, you would have thought I had stuck an alter candle up my mothers puss as the shock, the horror, the look on 'the parents' faces - the absolute outrage that I would dare even say such a thing, just made me laugh even more.

'The parents' ( small p you note ) well mostly 'the mother' was beside herself with rage. She went off on one, ranting about how selfish I was and I just put my hand up to silence her rant - and I refused point blank - absolutely not happening, not in this lifetime and not in any lifetime was I about to help my spoiled brat of a sister by giving up my own home - as she had never done anything but take take take and as for being a Karen, here was a fine example of 'the mother' acting like a Karen and I DO NOT take that from anyone.

I then told them to leave as I could see exactly where this was going and I was not about to have a fight with 'the parents' . Father hardly ever says a word so it was all mother.

They left shouting more crap about my selfishness and I contacted my sister soon after and said how sorry I was that her marriage was breaking down and that 'the parents' were somewhat misguided into demanding me give up my home for her as that was not going to happen, and I was going to see what I could do to help - but she screamed down the phone just as 'the mother' had done, demanding my house for herself.

I laughed LOUDLY down the phone and asked who the hell she thought she was to tell me what to do, and after a few minutes back and forth where she demanded my house, I told her to GO FUCK YOURSELF and hung up.

The phone calls started. All went to voicemail and all were abusive to such an extent I blocked their numbers ( 'the parents and sister' ) and I put in place extra security on the outside of the house - cameras - and extra locks on the doors and windows as I did not trust them one tiny bit.

John: Am I right ? Have they overstepped the boundaries of decency or am I a hard nosed uncaring asshole as they claim ?

I hadn't a clue where she went or what she did as I was absolutely not about to call any of them any time as I know I will just be re abused. So I have kept my distance and on a few occasions when I did see their car pull up outside, I pretended to be out. Personally, I now have nothing to do with them and 3 months ago I sold the house and moved into a fab new build apartment - really luxurious and with great views over the sky line of London, and have not told them - and as far as I am concerned, I shall leave them to their own devices for a year or two and see if and when the storm clouds clear and take it from there.

Is that the right thing to do John. I really value your input.

( Name withheld )

JB Answers: It looks to me as if you have gone about this just as I would have done and I congratulate you for not allowing yourself to be bullied by your parents.

It is sad that your family has to act in such a manner and I do hope your sister sorts herself out and that things can, one day, mend between you all as they are all the family you have.

It is a shame it has broken down over this. However - I completely applaud how you have acted and admire your strength and tenacity to see it through without weakening. I admire your ability to see through the hardship offered you as a child and how you have made a life for yourself - despite your parents.

Relationships between Mothers and daughters is often a difficult one as daughters usually bond well with fathers more so than Mothers, ( Daddy's little Princess ) and Mothers can sometimes resent the emotional tie between the father and daughter - but in this case it sounds as if your family needs some family counselling and you have not mentioned much concerning your Father in all of this, just your Mother.

Space is important. By taking yourself out of the equation, by putting space between you and moving home and cutting ties, while being a hard thing to do, for your own sake it is important not to weaken and to stand strong on your own, as it sounds as if your needs are secondary to theirs - and even unimportant to them, as long as sister is okay - and I can understand exactly why you have done what you have done to protect yourself from them.

Family life can be toxic - and this family seems to offer a toxic environment and one of - as you say - acting like a Karen and just demanding - and that would rub me up the wrong was as well.

I don't think I need offer any guidance here as you seem to have sorted this quite well on your own and I take my hat off to you. But don't cut those ties forever - and while you do not need let them know where you are living or even your phone number ( get a PO Box address maybe ) one day you may want to check and see how the road lies and who knows, your parents might just see the error of their ways and come around, and if not, you have lost nothing you haven't already lost.

As gay men, we often have to make our own family around us made up of supportive friends rather than horrible relatives, and good for you - I take my hat off to you.



The story continues:

John: Sister turns out to be a drama queen. She did move into 'the parents ' house and stayed until she found another man friend to support her and now lives with him some place near Cambridge, so miles away from any of us.

I applied and made tracks to see if my Birth Mother (BM ) was actually alive and it turns out she is and the car crash was bullshit by 'the parents.' Understandable I suppose.

I was adopted as my BM was only 16 and from a strict catholic family in Ireland ( that was a surprise ) and she was living not 20 minutes on the tube from me here in London.

She was also looking for me and we eventually met - just this year - and for the first time in years, I bawled my eyes out as did she. It was the most wonderful meeting. So much in common. I look just like her and the other son she went on to have after marrying some years later - so I have a half brother - was also there to meet me and he was - guess what - GAY... and I had seen him around the bars - and while this sounds like some fairy story - I suppose it is... At the time she was unmarried and the man skipped off as soon as she announced she was pregnant and was forced to put me up for adoption by her Grandmother and Mother, as they could not stand the shame of having an unwanted bastard in the family.

She also was outcast after that and fended for herself, moving to London - met a man, married and had a son and after her husband was killed in the army, lived alone and quite happy. She is an accountant and this is where I get my brains from.

As for my adopted family, I rarely hear from them and I rarely think about them any more other than to have pity for my father putting up with my Mother and her rants. As for my sister, she has made her bed....

So John, a happy ending which I am sure is not common in this world of horrors we live in.


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