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Old 09-09-2015, 01:07 AM   #41
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What would you do?
I'd tell my brother to f*** off.

And no, I'm not joking. I have zero tolerance for family members who act like they're king of the world. If that meant a sibling of mine never talked to me again, so be it.
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Old 09-09-2015, 01:32 AM   #42
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I am amazed at the OP's attachment to family rituals. In my family we are dispersed among several continents and everyone understands when people are unable to make it to weddings, funerals, anniversaries, holidays, etc. Absences can be for a variety of reasons, from visas to no vacation time to finances. We get together face to face when we can and supplement that with electronic media. We certainly don't let that come between us.
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Old 09-09-2015, 03:43 AM   #43
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Let it go. Have your event and if he comes fine. If you can make his event, go and have fun. One of my cousins plans a family picnic every year. I'm to the point where I don't want to go. It's in the same place every year and it's boring. Every year several of us make the suggestion that one of us will plan it and make suggestions for a different venue but this cousin insists on her way. There are already family members that are not going because it's boring. Also everyone doesn't have a big family attachment. I can go for weeks without seeing my parents or grandparents where 3 of my sisters, see them every few days. One of my sister's calls my mom every day.
Just curious, is that 6 hour drive a one day event or is he staying overnight?
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Old 09-09-2015, 08:13 AM   #44
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My brother went through a phase where he was inexplicably super-self-centered. His convenience was the only factor that mattered. So I get it. It's very disturbing. Really made me feel as if he didn't value family at all.

Here's the thing: after a few years, it got better. He was always a bit selfish but nothing like those years. I still don't know why it happened. It was clear to everyone else in the family, but he felt he was being reasonable in demanding that all others accommodate his whims/convenience. And he'd explain his reasoning about why he was entitled to have everyone else do his bidding. It was bizarre.

From my experience: do what seems reasonable to you. Maybe meet him a little more than half way, even, so you don't feel later that you should have done more. But don't feel compelled to acquiesce to all his demands. I expressed my unwillingness to do things his way in the midst of those problem years but did not dwell on it.

Things change, he may not be this way forever. Try not to make it a bigger deal than it is. He may 'recalibrate' in a few years.

My brother and I are closer than ever. That wouldn't have happened if I made it a bigger issue.
I was thinking the same thing--be the bigger man now and wait. When you are older you might miss the relationship if you burn the bridge now. So maybe do the things you can or want to do with his family, have fun with your parents on their own (invite bro and his family too if you want), and see what develops.
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Old 09-09-2015, 09:49 AM   #45
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I am amazed at the OP's attachment to family rituals. In my family we are dispersed among several continents and everyone understands when people are unable to make it to weddings, funerals, anniversaries, holidays, etc. Absences can be for a variety of reasons, from visas to no vacation time to finances. We get together face to face when we can and supplement that with electronic media. We certainly don't let that come between us.
You seem to of missed what has me displeased, Meadbh.
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Old 09-09-2015, 09:51 AM   #46
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Let it go. Have your event and if he comes fine. If you can make his event, go and have fun. One of my cousins plans a family picnic every year. I'm to the point where I don't want to go. It's in the same place every year and it's boring. Every year several of us make the suggestion that one of us will plan it and make suggestions for a different venue but this cousin insists on her way. There are already family members that are not going because it's boring. Also everyone doesn't have a big family attachment. I can go for weeks without seeing my parents or grandparents where 3 of my sisters, see them every few days. One of my sister's calls my mom every day.
Just curious, is that 6 hour drive a one day event or is he staying overnight?
We have usually done three day weekends. Six hours drive one way isn't conducive to short get togethers.
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Old 09-09-2015, 10:08 AM   #47
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You seem to of have missed what has me displeased, Meadbh.
I perceived very well the proximate cause of your displeasure, Keim. I shared my family's outlook as an illustration of an alternative way of approaching family get togethers. That is, taking pleasure in spending time with family when we can, but no blame when we can't.
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Old 09-09-2015, 10:17 AM   #48
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I perceived very well the proximate cause of your displeasure, Keim. I shared my family's outlook as an illustration of an alternative way of approaching family get togethers. That is, taking pleasure in spending time with family when we can, but no blame when we can't.
So, you would be fine with one of your family members insisting on things being done to the convenience of themselves, regardless of how this may inconvenience the others? (See previously mentioned 50th ann. example).
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Old 09-09-2015, 10:40 AM   #49
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So, you would be fine with one of your family members insisting on things being done to the convenience of themselves, regardless of how this may inconvenience the others? (See previously mentioned 50th ann. example).
My reaction would be to send regrets, explaining my reason (not in the budget, previous commitment, etc) and to wish them a great time.
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Old 09-09-2015, 10:54 AM   #50
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My reaction would be to send regrets, explaining my reason (not in the budget, previous commitment, etc) and to wish them a great time.
Unfortunately, you can't really send regrets to your parents 50th wedding celebration, it's this kind of manipulation that sent the OP here asking for some counsel. I'd say again either have an upfront discussion about what's bugging you or attend only the occasions that are pretty much mandatory.
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Old 09-09-2015, 10:58 AM   #51
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My reaction would be to send regrets, explaining my reason (not in the budget, previous commitment, etc) and to wish them a great time.
FWIW that HAS been my reaction for the most part. Haven't gotten on brothers case at all.
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Old 09-09-2015, 11:00 AM   #52
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And they don't call it sibling rivalry for nothing.
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Old 09-09-2015, 11:06 AM   #53
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I have since noticed a pattern as we try to make plans-everything must now be at his convenience. He went so far as to have the parents move there 50th anniversary celebration from their desired MT location to a place near him in OR.
Keim, I find the part about moving the anniversary party just odd. It's a once in a lifetime event and it's for your parents, not for him.

I can understand packing up a family and traveling being expensive and difficult, although they managed to do their Europe trip. This just gives off the feeling that your family get-togethers are way down on the list of priorities and if they are not convenient enough they just won't bother.

DH is the oldest of 5 siblings and he's the only one who is retired. His brother in NJ rarely sees their elderly mom in Colorado. He has a wife and 2 daughters. They live in a very expensive area because his wife's family lives nearby and they're very tight with her family. They do a yearly week long trip with his wife's family and it sounds like that's all the vacation time they have. Grandma saw the family in 2009 when she paid for all of us to go on vacation together and she saw them again this summer because she visited us in Ohio and he drove the family here for a long weekend. Six years not seeing your granddaughters is a long time when you are in your 80's.

We love them dearly, but they have made it clear that the wife's family is central to their daily existence and that our side of the family is not even secondary, but way down on the list.

It's an odd situation but all of us love them and accept that this is the way it's going to be. We all get along very well, whether it's on the phone or email or on Facebook, which is the only way that the cousins know each other. Yes, the distance and travel expenses are an issue, we all understand that.

In our family no one gets mad about it or brings it up as an issue. It's just the way it is in some families.
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Old 09-09-2015, 11:26 AM   #54
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This all boils down to one brother wanting to know how to force another brother to 'see things his way' - both have made up their minds. The OP seems to make no attempt to see the brothers POV, and the OP is only looking for ways to convince the brother he is "wrong" - no middle ground. Good luck...
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Old 09-09-2015, 11:31 AM   #55
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Unfortunately, you can't really send regrets to your parents 50th wedding celebration, it's this kind of manipulation that sent the OP here asking for some counsel. I'd say again either have an upfront discussion about what's bugging you or attend only the occasions that are pretty much mandatory.
My parents didn't make it to their 50th, but when their 40th was imminent, I made plans to travel 4000 miles to Europe to host a party for them on New Year's Eve. Then they mentioned that it would be nice to visit me, since I had just bought a house. Eureka! I realized that they would get far more enjoyment out of that than one family get together. So I bought them tickets to come visit me for two weeks in Canada, in August. We had a wonderful time with many special moments, and they went home knowing that "the kids are alright". For their 40th, they went out for a romantic dinner, I sent flowers, and they had many congratulatory phone calls, cards, etc. Everyone was happy with thinking outside the box. That's just how we roll in this family.
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Old 09-09-2015, 11:49 AM   #56
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This all boils down to one brother wanting to know how to force another brother to 'see things his way' - both have made up their minds. The OP seems to make no attempt to see the brothers POV, and the OP is only looking for ways to convince the brother he is "wrong" - no middle ground. Good luck...
No. Remember-only addressed the issue once with brother. Trying to change his mind would be a waste of both our times.

I'm simply after info on the exact question I asked: What would you do?
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Old 09-09-2015, 12:19 PM   #57
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My parents didn't make it to their 50th, but when their 40th was imminent, I made plans to travel 4000 miles to Europe to host a party for them on New Year's Eve. Then they mentioned that it would be nice to visit me, since I had just bought a house. Eureka! I realized that they would get far more enjoyment out of that than one family get together. So I bought them tickets to come visit me for two weeks in Canada, in August. We had a wonderful time with many special moments, and they went home knowing that "the kids are alright". For their 40th, they went out for a romantic dinner, I sent flowers, and they had many congratulatory phone calls, cards, etc. Everyone was happy with thinking outside the box. That's just how we roll in this family.
It sounds like you have a cool family...nice open communication is the key to making things like this work.Lack of communication and hidden agendas mean a lot of families can't make this work,I do agree it's the ideal scenario.
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Old 09-09-2015, 12:22 PM   #58
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It sounds like you have a cool family...nice open communication is the key to making things like this work.Lack of communication and hidden agendas mean a lot of families can't make this work,I do agree it's the ideal scenario.
Thank you! For us it's not about the roll call, but about sharing family love in whatever way works.
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Old 09-09-2015, 12:42 PM   #59
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No. Remember-only addressed the issue once with brother. Trying to change his mind would be a waste of both our times.

I'm simply after info on the exact question I asked: What would you do?
Nothing. You value family get togethers (way) more than he does for reasons unknown. You shared your POV with him once. It is what it is...
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Old 09-09-2015, 01:48 PM   #60
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My parents didn't make it to their 50th, but when their 40th was imminent, I made plans to travel 4000 miles to Europe to host a party for them on New Year's Eve. Then they mentioned that it would be nice to visit me, since I had just bought a house. Eureka! I realized that they would get far more enjoyment out of that than one family get together. So I bought them tickets to come visit me for two weeks in Canada, in August. We had a wonderful time with many special moments, and they went home knowing that "the kids are alright". For their 40th, they went out for a romantic dinner, I sent flowers, and they had many congratulatory phone calls, cards, etc. Everyone was happy with thinking outside the box. That's just how we roll in this family.
Sounds like a lovely anniversary for your parents. I am guessing you didn't have to run any of the planning past siblings?
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