My Sister and her husband have had problems. She can be quite demanding and rigid in her ways. He is very immature and childish. Sister spent many years in therapy for her own issues and they have gone through marriage counseling too. I have seen huge changes (for the better) in her. My husband has observed those changes too.
Despite my sister's maturing ways, BIL hasn't changed much. Just before he left for Iraq, there was a huge incident (I wrote about here). Later, I updated some in this prior blog post.
My Sister decided to use the break while BIL was overseas to re-evaluate herself. She decided to give it one more chance, to give her best and see what happened. BIL came back, was wishy-washy about re-enlisting, ended up re-enlisting, got a job promotion and just finished his 2 year degree. Sister started working at a job with handicapped/developmentally-disabled adults, that has the same schedule as the school so she can be home with the kids when they are off. BIL has some minimal contact with his bio dad, but none really with his mom/steo-dad. Things seemed to be going okay.
Until a few months ago.
Sister has some health issues - namely something called gastroparesis which is an inability of her body to process food effectively. So she is on a liquid diet. It's probably stress related. She finally got back on an anti-depressant and was prescribed ambien as well. It seemed that her health was getting better.
Sister called me awhile back, very upset. Between her difficulty talking about it, my being triggered by some of what she was saying, her being upset - it took awhile to get all the details and there are some that I know I've missed, blocked or haven't absorbed. The long and short of it is that Sister told me that BIL raped her and that she woke up, from an ambien-assisted sleep, to find him "having sex with her." It wasn't the first time she woke up to find him making advances. But it had gone much further than ever before. She also told me about incidences where she was startled awake during a long car ride to find him groping her. Major trigger because of the similarities to Toilet's actions. BIL also would come up and grind against her - major trigger there too. BIL blames it on the fact that his step-dad was very touchy-feely/grabby, and so he didn't know any better.
After the last incident, Sister kicked him out of the bedroom and forced him to sleep on the couch downstairs. She can't take the medication any more for fear of what she will sleep through. She also demanded he seek counseling. He did. The counselor said that BIL had many issues - ADHD, depression, PTSD from the two Iraq deployments, and childhood abuse issues.
Sister was giving it time. When they've visited, BIL has still been on the couch. But the fighting was continuing. BIL has a tendency to lie. About everything and anything. Lies to suit whoever he is talking too. Mostly trivial stuff too. He'll tell Sister he needed money for gas; then she'll find out that the gas station debit was for fast food - not gas. He'll forget to do something as promised and then lie and make up an excuse. He always has excuses too. He promised the kids and my sister that he would not re-enlist in the Guard. Then he found out about this significant signing bonus so he did re-enlist and tried to smooth things over by using part of the money to go to Disney.
Sister laid down some ultimatums. BIL didn't follow through. Didn't complete what he needed for school reimbursement. Didn't return the numerous phone calls to the church pastors and leaders. Didn't follow through on regular counseling appointments. Kept insisting Sister let him back into the bedroom. Didn't understand why she was "carrying a grudge."
BIL continues to minimize things, and describe the incident as "groping." He tried to tell Sister that his counselor told him Sister should have moved forward by now. Sister talked to the counselor (with BIL's permission) and that is not true. Counselor told BIL and Sister that this would take years. Also that BIL has to work on getting help with his issues for himself - not just to get back into the bedroom.
BIL attended church with us while we were up visiting. He was upset because all the men in the church were saying, "he we need to get together." He thinks Sister is talking about him. In reality, Sister is trying to get some of the men to reach out to BIL in hopes he will find some good friends to mentor him and hang out with. He also talked with my husband. He continues to minimize things and say Sister is blowing things out of proportion.
The straw that broke the camels back was one of the pastors telling my Sister that she needed to cut him some slack. Sister explained a bit about what was going on and the pastor back-tracked and had his wife speak with Sister. The wife told Sister that BIL needed to move out for awhile. She had another couple in the church contact Sister/BIL. The other couple separated 1 year ago. They are working on their marriage and the husband was very honest with BIL about what needed to happen if BIL wanted the separation to be temporary.
BIL continues to deny the extent of the issues. He is so focused now on figuring out what he will do on his own. He moved out this morning. He has never lived on his own or managed his own money. I do not know how he will cope. He can't make decisions on his own. He needs to learn how. He is on the self-pity stage.
He also minimizes his fault and blames things on Sister being too "sensitive" because of her "childhood issues." I don't know exactly what happened with the "incident." I think Sister told me but I was dissociative during the details so I can't say for sure. Not sure if it was forced sexual intercourse or "just" (insert sarcasm here) touching without consent. My husband (male that he is) sees a difference. I do not. Apparently BIL does too.
Sister feels guilty. She hates that the kids are upset. She is torn between being honest with the kids and telling them too many details. It's just crappy. I don't want to see marriages fall apart, but I do want to kill BIL.
I'm trying to encourage her to get some counseling for herself. But she says she feels "counseled out" and that she has compromised all she is willing to do. So we'll see how it goes.
In any event this has thrown me for a loop. I keep telling myself to, "suck it up buttercup" and that it "doesn't affect me." But it does. Stepping on some major toes. Not exactly sure why or how, but I just know it is. Guess I'll add it to the "List of things I need to Muster Up Energy to Process and Deal with." That list is getting much longer these days.