For so, so many years I have developed this need to get a second opinion about my reactions to things to know if I'm being overly sensitive or unreasonable. 9 times out of 10 I'm told my feelings are valid and I'm totally within my right. On Thanksgiving, my brother in law flew off the handle on me for literally nothing: I decided, after sitting and listening in silence to he and my sister go back and forth on various political topics, to excuse myself from the conversation when he wouldn't let me speak for basically the first time in the whole talk. He shouted at me to "sit your f---ing ass down" and so /I/ raised my voice to explain why I absolutely would not. Next thing I know, he's lunging at me, his 19 yo son is holding him back (having ran up the damn stairs hearing it escalate) and my sister pushing me behind her to put two bodies between me and him. Everyone (except him) agrees that I didn't do anything to deserve it, but my sisters are expecting me to forgive him when he eventually apologizes. Nevermind that he doubled down this morning that I'd disrespected him in his house (nevermind that he yelled first), my sisters insisted it was his brain injuries, steroid medication, and how much he'd had to drink. MY thing is this isn't even close to the first time this has happened and even though he's never lunged at me and demanded I get out of his house, this isn't the first time he's tried to force me past my boundary during a political discussion that I know he (we when it's me and him) can't handle. My sister's called me out for being a grudge holder and my dad and best friend point out that not forgiving him in the event that he does apologize is not a grudge, it's setting a further boundary and message that this is not (expletive) okay. So going back to my initial topic of this post, I'm sick of requiring validation of my interpretation of situations. If it were up to my sisters I'd be forgiving him just for the sake of keeping the peace and because he's got all of these things going on with him. But here's the thing: a LOT of people have brain injuries, a LOT of people take steroids for arthritis and other things, a LOT of people drink. Why does this excuse any of what happened when he KNOWS he has a brain injury, he KNOWS steroids makes him mean, and he KNOWS he's easy to anger when he's drunk? Excuses, excuses, and MORE EXCUSES. I am so grateful for my dad and my best friend letting me know that I'm completely within my right for this "grudge" where usually they're the first ones to call me out for doing so unreasonably. But where I really want to be, is able to decide for myself how I should react, how to feel without needing validation and without feeling pressured based on what other people say. And that I think will be the focus of my therapy when I start back. #story #trustingyourself #selfvalidation #Abuse #Forgiveness