January 10, 2010
I was raised by wild dogs. Well, not really but wild dogs would've probably done a better job at parenting than my own mother and father. My parents were pretty messed up. Lots of drama, drugs and booze. After a while, the rest of the family (the sane side) distanced themselves. Now that both my parents are dead, I'm re-connecting with my uncle, aunts and cousins. But here's the thing: there's a 30 year gap or so since I last saw them. I like them -- they all seem pretty nice (and normal). But I just don't feel connected, like we're family. I know that comes with spending time with them and getting to know each other. But I think maybe it's just me that feels this way -- I have the impression they feel like we're there already, we're Family (with a capital F). I want to explain how I feel but I don't want to hurt their feelings in the process. And I wonder if I'm weird because I can't feel connected to them yet. Relationships are hard. I know family is what you make of it -- your family doesn't even have to be related to you if that's how you define it and what you want. But for me it seems especially hard to figure out what it means. Do other people have this problem? Why is Family so complicated?