We are a family of five (parents, two sisters, and one brother). When I came to the U.S., I was only 12 years old. My aunt had been living and working in the U.S for several years, but she was not married and did not have any children when we arrived. She begged my father (her older brother) to give her my elder sister, so she is not alone. My dad fulfilled her wish and he gave his only sister his first daughter (14 years of age). Ofcourse my mother was completely against this desicion but he did not listen to her and to scare her my aunt sent her back to her country and tried to divorce my parents.
Later my dad had employment issues and he began taking care of his younger brother who became paralyzed beck down, so she begged him to give her my brother as well (16 years of age). I was 17 years of age when my brother left.
When my dad gave his two children away he thought she would be the best person to raise them and take care of them and she will keep the family united in love and peace. But that proved to be wrong.
My aunt destroyed our personal relationships. She went to the extent of lying about me and my parents to the elders in the family and my siblings. She falsely accusing my parents of ‘deserting’ our family. There are numerous things she did to continuously hurt me. She continuously insulted my innocent parents several times in front of me and my siblings. She wanted us to never contact my siblings, When I defended my parents she held it against me and refused to ever speak to me or see me again. My siblings are completely under her control and they are blind to all of this although they are mature in age now (We are all in our thirties now). I have absolutely no support from my siblings. My parents beg them to help, but they stand mute infront of my aunt.
My parents keep on forgiving my aunt because she helped raise them (being financially stronger than them), but not a day goes by that my parents do not repent their mistake of allowing my aunt to raise my siblings and they make it very clear to me every opportunity they get. Seeing them weep on their prayer rugs because of this for at least ten years makes me really unhappy.
As long as I can remember I was against my family being disunited and my siblings being raised by anyone other than my parents (my aunt lives in a different state), but no one listened to me because I was too young at that time and not the decision maker in the family. I am aware that my siblings too are suffering because that is natural when a family is torn apart. I feel that they have cut communication with me to please my aunt and they do not listen to my parents and also Allah who constantly asks us to unite by forgiving each other.
What concerns me is that my siblings have never heard my side and how I feel about the whole situation. Every attempt I have made to get closer to them has been hopeless as they refuse to change their ways and at times they are so mean to me that I naturally become too sad to continue any contact. They have been brainwashed to believe that we do not love them so they treat us worse than enemies. I left my aunt alone and because of this have not visited her or spoken to her for more than five years now. My aunt is taking advantage of my silence and pretends to be innocent and now continuously blames me for everything when I have done nothing wrong. I have suffered because my family has been torn apart. My Uncles told me not to worry about her- we know our sister. She writes false things about me to the elders in our family even when I have left her alone as per her request. I never bother her because I believe that when Allah closes once door it is for your own benefit and I trust Allah. I stopped visiting her after my aunt slapped me for standing up for my parents’ honor and not allowing her to verbally abuse them. She wrongfully blamed my parents for deserting my siblings rather than appreciating their huge sacrifice and honoring them. She told me and my parents to get out of her house for no reason (just weeks before my elder sisters’ wedding) … something that was absolutely unnecessary and unexpected of an elderly educated aunt and Muslima! And there has been many instances that she has told my parents that they are nothing and I am nothing and that she is their everything and that she is their mother and father.
We were a very united and loving family before we came to the U.S. My siblings were my best friends. I love them every much and not a day has passed that I have not missed them. My aunt has torn me apart from them and is constantly hurting me and my parents and doing so even more through my siblings who have been completely misguided under her upbringing. She has brainwashed them to believe that we do not love them or her. I have waited patiently for over ten years and tried my best to make her realize that she is wrong, but there is no change. I have talked to her about the situation personally several times in the past and her advise was to never keep any relations with my siblings and ‘never come to my house’. My father has called and sent countless emails but she has refused to read them and taught my siblings not to read anything sent from us. The result is we have zero communication with each other and we do not visit each other. Of course my parents who have given their children to her are the worst in her eyes although she is fully aware that our heaven lies under our mothers’ feet, she continues to hate our mother and keeps her as far away from us as she possibly can. I have heard her refrain my siblings from visiting me and my parents. I have not had any relationship with my siblings for more than eight years now (without any fault of mine) and I too am constantly living in pain. My aunt begged my father to give her his children because she didn’t have a family of her own and to this day my parents and I bear this never ending pain.
I begged my parents to do something to unite our small family, and they did everything they possibly could, but of course it fell upon deaf ears. The irreparable damage has already been done. They can not do anything also because my siblings do not understand the complexity of the problem/loss and they too are not willing to do anything to unite the family either. As of date, my parents have exhausted all their options and now claim we have to forget the past and forgive her and start living our lives with this nasty truth. They tell me to be patient by living a pretend life where I have no family (no aunt and no siblings- which I have been training myself to do for years now just to keep sane) and they ask me to be strong under these facts and circumstances as a huge test from Allah. I know the truth always comes out, but I’d rather it come out now then never. I am ready to face my aunt and her lies and so are my parents, but the harsh reality of life is that they have always closed their doors on us. My aunt is a liar and like liars usually do she is hiding behind her closed doors, and refusing to meet or talk to us about this extremely important issue. Unfortunately my siblings follow her footsteps. I am aware that this is no way to live for a Muslim family who loves each other. If it wasn’t for my aunt, my family would have been in unity today and our quality of life and closeness with each other along with our individual personalities would have been much better today.
I have always loved my siblings and I will always continue to do so in my heart, but I can not take the fact that they have constantly pushed me away for no reason (and the pain I go through is unimaginable). I no longer have the energy to chase them. I feel that as Muslims and professional adults, we can all use our brains and respect Allah’s guidance. As far as I am aware, I have done whatever I possibly can to unite the family and tried my best for my siblings to open up their hearts and minds, but it has constantly fallen upon deaf ears and heartless beings. I have done as much good as I possibly can in return to their bad behavior, yet I have seen no change. My parents want me to remain silent. They want my aunt to do whatever she wishes as they have given up. And being firm believers in Allah, they want Him to do what HE wills quoting “the damage has already been done, so there is absolutely nothing we can do anymore”. But surely there are limitations.
I know I will never forget, but I know I have the ability to forgive if they ask me for sincere forgiveness. But when will they realize? I am aware that forgiveness makes you closer to Allah and may be my only option for my own inner peace as well. I do not want to wait till my aunt dies. Surely I want her to realize the damage she has done to my small family and I want to forgive her before she dies to make death easier on her as well, but on the condition that she apologizes to all of us and unites my family the same way she broke us apart.
I myself have tried everything from continuous apologies to her and doing good in return to her even though she chose not to be there for me when I needed her the most on several occasions. She chose to cut me and my parents off and separate us physically and emotionally from our siblings. Every encounter with her and my siblings has been filled with insults and these are the memories we now have of family!
Nothing works with her and I’ve given up when it comes to her. I have lost hope in my elder sister as well as she has become her true follower: completely deaf and blind as to us and our feelings. I sometimes have hope from my younger brother, but he easily becomes brain washed by them and is so busy with his own life and work that he has no time for his older sister or parents. I am married and work a full time job and I have always taken out time for my family, but I have noticed that my aunt and siblings do not respect that so I am completely disheartened. I have suffered too long. I pray that Allah ends our suffering and opens both of my siblings’ hearts and minds to realize this sad state of affairs in our family. I want Allah to help my aunt who I believe has become a saddist and is more than 76 years of age, so obviously I expect better from her as a Muslima and as an aunt.
I wish my small family is united and I continuously pray to Allah to reward us and especially my parents for their patience and never ending sorrow regarding this matter. I am in pain and I have lost patience, so any advise from you will be greatly appreciated. Jazak Allahu Khayrun