I cannot do conflict very well. I tend to brood. I cannot remember all the details of past conversations, and who said what to whom, and when and why. I do not act with malice. I do my best. My best may not be good enough. But I do not seek to hurt, injure, disrupt, act with malice. I want to get on with people, especially family. I am not always tactful, try as I may. But I have bitten my tongue many a time. When I was young, any sort of female aggressiveness, or outspokenness was very much frowned upon. I do not think that I have ever spoken like that to any of my siblings. It was, quite simply, awful. How to recover, how to get on an even keel?
I do not want to offend people, even when it seems to me that they feel free to dish it out to me. But it strikes me that I often come back from visiting family feeling rather battered. And I feel that I am losing my authentic and real voice, for fear of offending others. I cannot cope with the inevitable conflict, and avoidance seems the easiest, perhaps the best strategy. I am alone.
Where is my real voice, and how can I find and express my true self? Truth is fundamentally necessary for me. I cannot lie. But nor can I always tell the whole truth. Where does the balance lie?
My sister rang me the next morning, apologising, and it was sorted out and smoothed over as much as possible. But recovering from this is difficult, as it is hard to avoid the feeling that there has been and is a lot of dislike and resentment. On the Sunday we were both at the family gathering, but did not talk until later in the gathering. We have talked since, but it seems to be a situation in which you do not mention the war. I feel battered, and injured. And I feel that I am retreating, and not engaging in life. Irrelevant in all ways.