More threads by sunset


I know there is a very strong tendency on my part to cut people off in my life if they do something wrong to me or to people in my family. This also includes family!

I had a terrible fight with my brother in law the other night over the phone and he ended up hanging up on me. When I saw him last night he tried to come up to me, say hello give me a hug and kiss. I backed away, said don't talk to me, and I avoided him the whole night. I am basically DONE with him. The only reason I even tolerated him and my niece, was for the sake of my visiting nephew and his family from Canada.

Same thing with my one niece who hurt the family badly, especially my sister. I have also "written her off", and have not talked to her since, nor do I even want too. She was also over last night with the jerk she married, so it caused a lot of tension in the family.
This story is way too involved to get into but I want to know if there is a known name for my getting like this. I can turn on a dime no matter how close I was to the person, and not look back.

My mother says my reaction is severe, and she is of the mindset to "be nice for the sake of peace". I totally don't agree with that statement. I don't allow people to walk all over me and those I care about.

What are your thoughts and opinions??


A question to "spice up" the conversation... based on my own life experience of course:

If people were to write you off for every time you upset them, how many people would still be speaking to you?


Misha... I am not talking about normal disagreements and things like that. These are major betrayal and hurtful things..

If someone writes me off, then they write me off. I dont really care.
What I do care about is that innocent people are made the villian and the real villian is dubbed the innocent. That BURNS me! :rant:

Daniel E.
I had a terrible fight with my brother in law...
Same thing with my one niece who hurt the family badly...

These people aren't immediate family members, so I wouldn't be as concerned. Of course, Misha makes a good point. Also, how many people have you actually written off? How do most of your friendships end? Most of my good friendships ended because I moved or they moved and so we more easily grew apart.


They may not be immediate as the word means, but I was VERY close to them. I mean we would be together all the time, holidays, birthdays, and saw them every week.

I have some good friends and have for many, many years.

When people betray or really hurt me or someone I love, then I am seeing the real person. Now if a person apologizes and made a mistake or whatever, I am forgiving. Its when these people turn on you, make YOU the problem, and act like they did nothing. THOSE are the people I write off and dont want to associate with.
With family, its obviously a little more involved because it starts strife and the family is divided.
My sister has put up with a LOT of verbal abuse and I am NOT going to sit by and say nothing.
What would you do??? NOTHING??

By the way.. Misha makes a good point ONLY if I was like this for trivial problems. Its not trivial problems I am dealing with.
The few people I have written off, was a good thing for ME.


Daniel.. Thank you for that..

I am an extemely loyal person who would give the shirt off my back to ANYONE. But once they hurt me, I close down. I am very sensitive to people who are being abused, hurt, violated, attacked. I thought maybe this forum would understand this, BUt I am not so sure anymore..

Crawling back into my shelll now. Goodbye


I do understand that Sunset and I thank god that there are people like you in this world. If not for people like you who are understanding, caring and sensitive, this world would be a pretty cold heartless place in my opinion :heart:

:hug: :hug:


Sometimes, you have to do what you have to do. If a certain person (or persons) hurts you deeply and will not compromise, or see that their behavior might be painful to you, there are times when it's best to simply turn away.

Often, when something like this happens it does open a rift in the family. Sometimes, it's a rift that really needed to be opened. By making it clear that certain words, behaviors, or actions are not going to be tolerated, you set clear boundaries. There's never anything wrong with that, in my opinion. When the boundaries are clear, everyone knows the rules.

I've found that when something like this happens in a family, there is a period of time when things are very tense for everyone. That time varies, depending on the family and what brought about the problems. Most of the time, however, the resulting rift will heal over time. In the meantime, stick to you guns and do what's right for you, sunset. As long as you aren't purposefully hurting other people, you have a right to expect the same in return. :hug:


Hi, I just wanted to say that I have that same tendency to abruptly cut people off who I feel have done something wrong, particularly to people I care about. This has been happening for a long time, to the point where I have only 1 family member who I really talk to. I've also lost a lot of friends this way.

So, my thoughts about it are these: people make mistakes, they do rotten things, sometimes they deserve to be cut off...I think that's a given. But on the other hand, I don't think people's worth is completely contigent on their actions, thus, these people are not inherently "bad people", they are just acting in a bad way.

Which brings me to my next point, that behavior is transient, therefore, it makes sense to reevaluate these lost relationships down the line in order to see if perhaps there is something worth salvaging. If there is too much pain involved to do this, it seems like that might be an indicator that we are holding onto the bad feelings to the point where we are the ones that are suffering.

I think if we examine our motivation for cutting people off we might find where our truth is. If it's to punish the people, it's probably not working. Like the guy from The Secret said, "Holding a Grudge is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die" However, if the motivation is, as thatlady spoke of, to set boudaries for ourselves, than maybe it's better viewed as not cutting people off, but just setting boundaries. And one other point that I've learned through the years, is that no matter how badly I want to save someone else who is getting shafted by another person, it never works.

I also think Misha has a good point in her posts. I know I speak for myself when I say I have done heinous things in my life and I am thankful for every person that has forgiven me and let me back into their life. Hopefully I'll learn from them and pay it forward.

Anyway, that's my two cents.


Okay so just a couple of thoughts along the same lines or taking this a little further, if the person that you write off knows that you are going to forgive them and not completely write them off, is an apology not warranted?

Thinking along the lines of what Misha said and I agree that there are many things that I have done that I am not proud of either and I am also thankful that other have forgiven me but I have also always recognized that I made a mistake and apologized for it.

What if the person doesn't apologize? Can forgiveness still be given to an individual and acceptance of that person back into ones life if an apology is not given?

Just some thoughts.


Good questions.

My thoughts are that in order to forgive someone they do not need to apologize. I think forgiveness is something that comes from within. It doesn't mean that you forget what they did, or that you condone what they did, it just means that you forgive them for it, and that you are no longer going to carry around the negative feelings associated with being angry and hurt. If, in order to forgive someone, you require an apology, you hand over all of the power over to the other person, which, I think sets you up for more negative feelings.

Like I think I mentioned in another post (which I heard somewhere), forgiveness is a gift you give yourself and the other person, not (in my opinion) something you exchange for an apology. Just as, you presumably would not want an apology for the sole reason of gaining forgiveness. Probably you would want an apology because the person was truly sorry.

It seems like a dichotomy of tit for tat vs expressing true feelings, and I think the genuine expression of feelings would be the healthiest way to go and would yield the most happiness in the end.


I agree mostly with what Arose and ThatLady have said, and I would add that perhaps, when "writing people off," we ought to avoid "black and white thinking." In other words, the "write-off" need not be for eternity. It is hard to forgive those who betray you, especially if the betrayal appears to have been calculated or premeditated. It's hard to want to associate with such sorts of people, and I sure wouldn't. But even they can change, hypothetically for the better, and nothing is permanent.

I personally have not felt "betrayed" too often per se, although I've certainly felt ignored, rejected, misunderstood, disregarded, and disrespected. Lots of times, in fact. But I don't easily write people off. It's not in my nature. I get written off a lot, though. That's my perception anyway. So, as a person who has often been written off, and asked not to contact people anymore-- people who were and still are very important to me--it concerns me when I hear about people writing other people off.

I have been written off by a sister, a stepdaughter, and a niece, all three of whom I have doubts I'll ever see again, although I would love for there to be reconciliation. It is true that I had some severe problems three years ago, and I did and said some wild things (mostly over e-mails sent to them) but it is so far after the fact, I do not feel that these people are giving me a chance. If someone writes something off, and then the person being written off actually changes for the better; that person may never have the opportunity to make amends and show that s(he) has changed, and seek the forgiveness of the person whom s(he) had hurt. In my case, I have no idea how to get a hold of my sister, or my niece, or my stepdaughter. And no one else in my family will release the information, because everyone is too scared.

So while I think it might be fine and healthy to "write people off" for the time being, I just don't think you should see yourself as being "done" with them, because the situation will not always be as it is now. When we cut people out of our lives, we cut out hope.


What I've found in experiences similar to yours, Sunset, is that when people try to make you feel bad about something.......they are actually projecting their feelings about themselves onto you. They do that because they do not have the strength or knowledge to be accountable for what they've done or said. At this point, the people you have written off are probably not at a level of understanding themselves as much as you would hope them to be. Sometimes people fall short of our expectations. I used to be angry with people who did not measure up to be and do what I expected. But, then I heard something that made so much sense. All anger comes from fear. I started asking myself what I was afraid of instead of why am I angry? When you start answering those questions, you begin to understand other people, and then you can figure out what YOU should do. Also, the people you are standing up for, what are their thoughts about the people who are betraying/hurting? I don't know the whole story, but do you feel that you have to be the strong one all the time? I feel that way sometimes, but then I'm like, "What about the person I'm standing up for?" I should have faith in them that they have the strength to take care of their own issues. It is very noble to defend other people and be loyal to them, but give them just enough support so they can help themselves too. You know that cheesy saying, "You can lead a horse to water.......or give a man a fish......or teach him to fish" or get the point. You seem to be a rescuer. That's like me. It becomes a challenge to learn when to let go of those who do not want to participate in the effort.


I have learned that anger comes from fear also so I must be quite fearfull. I think I am afraid that everyone is going off the deep end and its spiraling out of control. Like how my sweet niece could turn into a whole other person (nasty) and hurt her family like she did SCARES me.
I dont really know what makes people tick but when you have known someone their whole life and they change dramatically, I have a real hard time with that.
She has hurt her family and dosent even see it, or care. When this happens, I turn on the person as they are not the same as they used to be. The hurt parties are floundering which upsets me more. I know I cant fix them or the problem and now I need to let it go and take care of me.
I can be a sympathetic ear for my sister, but that is all I should be. I am trying though and also trying to get over the anger issues and forgive.

Funny you should mention it, but I do feel like I have to be the strong one all the time.. Maybe in my subconscious mind, if I yell loud enough, maybe they will stop what they are doing, or just go away. Thats the outcome I want anyway..


Is your niece fairly young, in her 20's? Do you think that could be part of the reason for her behavior? Also, some people are very easily influenced by others. Can't say why for sure, but maybe it depends on their sense of identity. I think when people do a complete 180, it is because someone else or other people have some kind of control over them because of their weakened sense of self. You certainly can't fix that, but you do seem smart/strong enough become a really good influence for her and gradually gain back her trust. She probably feels everyone is against her, and that drives her closer to the negative influence(s.) You're right about her not seeing what she is doing to hurt her family. It's not that she doesn't care, she is just blind to it. But life has a way of smacking us right between the eyes, and waking us up when we are in situations that are less than desirable. The darkest hour is before the dawn. I have no idea why life is that way, but it is. You seem like you miss the closeness you once felt with your family. Maybe, you all are evolving. I suppose that has to include some pain because what do we ever learn from things that have been easy?


Hi Rebecca.. My niece is 24 yrs old and old enough to know better. She hooked up with this punk who is a master manipulator and took over her mind. She is a female him now, which is about as low as a person can go..
She has no self worth or she never would have married this thing.. He was all about taking her away from the family, and she allowed it to happen.
I miss the girl I used to know. Not this imposter, and I have no contact with her. Last time we spoke, she hung up on me, so thats that. Life will happen, and she will see the error of her ways in time. The marriage will not last...
He will get bored of this "game" and move on to destroy the next girl.

She knows exactly where her family stands and although the door is open for her, we will not allow him to manipulate us. She apparently has a problem with that and it too bad..


Account Closed
Hi Sunset,

My niece is 24 yrs old

My thoughts are about remembering what 24yrs old is like. I still remember and it was a selfish time as the world was still new and it was my oyster. I really didn't care what other people thought becasause it was all about obtaining my own goals and proving that I could make it on my own.

Gladly, in many ways, it was only a phase. Once I hit 30 my outlook on everything changed. We mature and discover new ways of looking at things.

So, you niece, doesn't matter how aggrivating it is, is going through a phase. I would never admit it then but 24 is still pretty young. I am glad you do have boundaries however about what behaviour you will and will not take.



She knows exactly where her family stands and although the door is open for her, we will not allow him to manipulate us

I thought that this was very nice that the family has not completely written her off but is still supporting her when and if she decides to come to her senses. That is the sign of true family support although keeping your boundaries up against this punk. I like that!!


Ladylore.. I sure hope she does grow up and come to her senses. She is wasting the best years of her life though..
Halo.. Thank You! She has to understand that we need to be true to ourselves and wont let some punk kid dictate what we can and cannot do.. His threats dont work on us, and it ticks him off.
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