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I don't know what is running through my sister's mind when she's… - until everything was rainbow, rainbow, rainbow [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]

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[Aug. 8th, 2013|07:35 pm]
[Current Location |Singapore, Serangoon]

I don't know what is running through my sister's mind when she's telling me about her traumatic childhood and her strained relationship with my mom in general. It clearly affected her a lot and still affects her now. And she seems to have the need to talk about it, for it comes up in almost every of our conversations. She'd tell me stories about how my mother used to punish them (and repeat these stories) and how i was 'exempted' from all these, somehow, magically, because i was born to a more subdued mother. And she'll tell me about how I'm clearly my mom's favourite child (erm, not true, I think it's my brother) and she will always recount how, the first time my mom tried to cane me, I was already in tears and wailing before the cane even struck. And my sister uses this incident as an explanation to why I was never physically punished by my mother who was capable of punishments more torturous than splitting skin with the cane. My sister completely negates my memory of being caned and slapped by my mom, of being asked to walk, naked, around our garden to shame me semi-publically. My sister refuses to acknowledge these experiences because they were few, and are nothing compared to what she and my brother suffered. And also because my mother recently told her that I have never been punished before. I can't blame my sister for negating my experiences because they really pale in comparison to hers, and the mother is clearly central to her life (so, technically, my mother erased my experiences, not my sister - but she did make me wonder if I made those experiences up, like how I possibly made up the memory of levitation - anyway my mom might not have been lying cause she might have thought that what she did to me cannot be considered punishment, though she did break a few of my glasses when she slapped me but well what are objects, since I have no scars).

(When my sister tells me all this, I resist inside, but I can't say anything against it - I feel like I'm disadvantaged by my privilege. I resist being called the favourite child the way I resist being called a scholar. I feel like I've earned it in a way, and made my own sacrifices which she's blind to (the things a favourite child must live up to, and do, to keep relations between everyone amicable). Also because I hate being compared in general. And also because my not going through what my sister and brother did, in the same intensity, is largely due to my being born at a different time - 12 years apart from them, I am an accident child, and they don't consider what an accident child has to go through. they don't realise that when it comes to family, a common history is important and ive been excluded from it, as much as it comes with its privileges, but i suffer the consequences without knowing why or how because i was not part of it. and worse, my siblings form a front against me and victimize me without them even realising. I want to resist but I can't, because she'll think that my resistance is an act of trying to ignore my privilege, when it really isn't.)

So yes it puzzles me what my sister is thinking of when she's telling me these stories. It's as puzzling as my godmother's question to my sister when she was about 11, about whether she ever blamed my mother. What did my godmother expect my sister to say, and would what my sister say change anything? What effect does it have other than confirming, to a child, how abnormal her experience is? Or was it just that my godmother couldnt contain it anymore? What does my sister expect me to say? Did she expect resistance, because if she did, did she realise I couldn't (because of my privilege and because even if I did, she would rebut and negate what I've said, as always)? Or did she just want me to just pass an affirmative and admit my own privilege (there's no way out of this is there? This is clearly coercion)? Or did she just need a talking through (years of years of it)?

But what she doesn't realise is how it affects me. She doesn't realise how personal her experiences feel, how it reminds me of some of which I've been through also - how it makes me relate while at the same time refusing to let me to.. But if you don't want me to relate, then don't tell me about it, because it's too close and too real - I can't keep a critical distance from it at all. Let me live in my privilege of being born at a different time if you want to use my privilege against me and don't force me to inherit your trauma, right?