How can I stop expecting my family to spend time with me?
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29-04-2016, 06:08 PM
How can I stop expecting my family to spend time with me?
I have a big family. 3 brothers and 1 sister. They are all married and have kids. Kids range from a few months, to age 13. My family gets pretty busy. They have kids in school and school activities, and work. It upsets me that they don't call me to hang out with me. I don't really buy that "busy" excuse. No one is that busy to schedule a time to hang out with me. What I would like to know is how can I stop expecting them to hang out with me? It affects my mental health a lot. I am a very sensitive person. If you have any advice it would be greatly appreciated. I am seeing a new therapist and will discuss this issue with her. I would like to learn how to stop having high expectations from others. So I wont get hurt. If you need anymore information please ask.
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29-04-2016, 06:33 PM
RE: How can I stop expecting my family to spend time with me?
(29-04-2016 06:08 PM)musicharmony87 Wrote:  I have a big family. 3 brothers and 1 sister. They are all married and have kids. Kids range from a few months, to age 13. My family gets pretty busy. They have kids in school and school activities, and work. It upsets me that they don't call me to hang out with me. I don't really buy that "busy" excuse. No one is that busy to schedule a time to hang out with me. What I would like to know is how can I stop expecting them to hang out with me? It affects my mental health a lot. I am a very sensitive person. If you have any advice it would be greatly appreciated. I am seeing a new therapist and will discuss this issue with her. I would like to learn how to stop having high expectations from others. So I wont get hurt. If you need anymore information please ask.

Running a household and raising a family, not to mention working for a living, don't leave a lot of time for 'hanging out'.

Also, they're not likely to come to you, you need to make an effort to reach out to them. I suggest offering to babysit, asking for help with schoolwork, participating in activities that they are active in.

I spent time with my older sister learning to cook, playing Scrabble®, with my brothers playing golf, and I babysat their kids. I also shared a love of science, technology, and philosophy with my brother-in-law.
My brothers and I helped each other with moving, with projects, and even did some hanging out.

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Science is not a subject, but a method.
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29-04-2016, 06:36 PM
RE: How can I stop expecting my family to spend time with me?
Is there a reason why you can't go hang out at their houses with them and their kids?

It may truly be that your family members just don't have the time and energy left over to do the kinds of things you used to do together. (Childless people sometimes tend to underestimate the amount of energy and time kids take--I sure did, until I had a kid of my own.) In that case, maybe it's a good idea to go out with your friends when you want to go out on the town.

Maybe take some pizza over to a sibling's house and plan to watch a movie, or go to one of your nephews' or nieces' activities, when you want to hang with your family?
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29-04-2016, 06:51 PM (This post was last modified: 29-04-2016 07:02 PM by Heatheness.)
RE: How can I stop expecting my family to spend time with me?
Make your own life, live it, try to enjoy it and you won't feel so lonely without them. Not all siblings want to spend time with each other, my children get along great when they are together and yet they barely speak to each other thoughout the year. What they have in common is me. They would drop everything to help the other and have but they do not live in and out of each others pockets.

Make a life for yourself with like minded people who do want to spend more time with you. Also, like others have said, be helpful, useful so they can have time to be with you. Live is overwhelming at times.

*edit*
I don't want this to sound in any way critical so please take it as an option of self-examination, not an accusation that anything is wrong with you and it may not even apply but if it does... neediness is suffocating, the good thing is it's a habit that can be retrained. Examine yourself and behaviors, are you a needy person, if so maybe they are just giving themselves some space, not from you, but from that neediness. Not trying to hurt your feelings but sometimes people don't realize their own neediness. Again, it's usually a habit learned and that can be retrained if so desired. Good luck.

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01-05-2016, 02:27 PM
How can I stop expecting my family to spend time with me?
Thank you all for the kind words and advice. I will try to focus on my own life more.


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02-05-2016, 04:28 AM
RE: How can I stop expecting my family to spend time with me?
Without knowing your particular situation it's hard to give advice. I'm not asking you to share more than you want to. Is there sibling rivalry? Big age differences? Are they all hanging out a lot and leaving you out? Since you're asking here for advice it's fair to assume you're atheist. Does your family know? Are they okay with it?
Assuming there are no big barriers, I'd say if you want to see them, reach out to them....often. Don't worry too much about who reaches out more. I say that with some caution. You don't want to put yourself in the position of being nagging or overbearing to them. But it seems it's more important to you than them. If that's the case then you can't sit idle and wait for them to call you. You don't actually have to tell them it's important to you to maintain a closeness to them. Show them it's important.
If you are really are only looking to find how to cope with them not wanting to make time for you, that would be really hard. Even with your own network of friends it seems it would still be hard to get your family not wanting to hang out with you off your mind. I won't make this about me. I can tell you though that I am involved in a similar situation. In my case though, I'm like your family.
Some people just don't care to make much time for siblings, parents, or other close family members. Sometimes they are avoiding everyone else's drama. Sometimes they start their own family and give them most of their time. Some people are fine with an occasional phone call or text. They probably aren't looking to be rude or uncaring.
Above any advise I might have for you I will say you should probably listen to your therapist. She will know you and your situation better than us.
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