I feel like an alien in my own family

First of all I need to say that I love everyone in my family and I believe they love me as well. My parents are really good parents and I love my siblings more than anything.
Now that this has been said, I’ll start from the beginning.

I lost my older sister when I was five. Old enough to remember and be affected by it, but too young to fully understand what was going on. At the time we were the only children, so after she passed away I was alone for a bit.
I don’t think I really knew what had happened, all I remember was that my parents just cried and cried for months, so not only had I lost my sister but also my parents as they were dealing with their own grief and couldn’t really parent me that much. That’s ok, I’m really proud of them for going on and getting through it, but it definetly messed me up.
I think maybe a doctor (my older sister passed away from an illness) told them to have a new child as that would help, so they did. About a year after my sister’d death I had a new sister, so for some time things were so much better and everyone was happy.
Today I have three younger siblings, but I feel like I don’t belong in my family. It kind of feels like after my sister died my parents just had a new family, and I’m sort of a leftover from what used to be, that I never got to be a kid anymore after that.

I’m not even sure why exactly I’m telling the story, I don’t think anyone can help me with this, I guess I just need to get this out of me. I hope maybe someone who’s going through something similar doesn’t feel alone in this.

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I feel like this sometimes too. It sucks and there isn’t really anything you could do to make it any better but if you want, I’ll be your friend and we can make our own cake family! :slight_smile: It’s not much that I can do, but i’m here if you need somebody.


Hey @nerm,

Thank you so much for sharing. Your story resonates with some things my family has been through, even if, obviously, the situation is different.

It’s really hard when there’s a grief in a family. I lost my older brother two years ago as he died from an illness too. The first months after he passed away, first months of being really shocked and numb, I started to realize that this loss changed absolutely everything and everyone. Everything seem to be different since then. It’s like you have this storm that just happened quickly and erased almost everything you knew before you got the time to realize it. My family is totally different and sometimes I wonder how things are going to be in the future. I also heard and still hear my parents cry, just like you. I’m grieving a brother but I also feel their pain and want everyone to get through it.

When you say that there are different losses, gosh… it’s absolutely true. Thankfully my sister and I are adults so we didn’t need parenting the same way you need it when you’re really young. Yet sometimes I felt like a litte girl again and just wanted my parents to reassure me. But as they are dealing with their own pain, I just support them as much as I can and I accept the fact that they can’t be strong everytime.

My parents are now too old to have an other child. So it’s still quite different from what you described. It made me think: what if it happened if we were younger and my parents had an other child after my sister and I? And to be honest just the idea of thinking about it makes me feel really uncomfortable.

So there’s something you didn’t mention in your message and it makes me wonder: did you talk together about this grief you’ve all been through? Did you talk together about having younger siblings? I ask this because in my family we’ve been all dealing with grief in different ways, and something absolutely unhealthy is that we’re avoiding to talk about it together. So… it’s only my point of view, and maybe the result of some personal needs, but I really think that those changes in your family can obviously have a major impact and talking about it can be really helpful for everyone. Even for your siblings who also have a unique position in this situation.

And on the contrary, not talking about it, about how it makes you feel can make you feel alone or isolated. Can sound a bit silly but I truly think that sometimes a good communication can do miracles and is really needed, especially in such circumstances. Otherwise we start to only guess what others are thinking or feeling and it can be really harmful to do that.

So… that’s true: when you lose someone, there’s a “before” and an “after”. And even we have absolutely no control when we lose someone, we can still try to do our best to makes things smoother for everyone over time. It’s obvious that you love each other. You sound to be a really loving and caring person to them. Also your feelings are absolutely valid. So I sincerely hope there will be a way for you to talk with them and share about how you feel.

I’m not sure if sharing all of this will help you to feel less isolated.
But anyway, you are not alone, friend.
Hold fast. :heart:


Hey @nerm,

Thanks a lot for taking the time to reply. :heart:

The fact you didn’t have the occasion to sincerely talk about it with your parents certainly didn’t help.
I understand why you consider that your parents already moved on and yes maybe it was hard to talk about it when you were a child. You know, I think you can’t be sure they really moved on. They certainly learned how to live with this loss through the years, as you see them everyday and saw how their behavior changed. But somehow, losing someone and losing a child isn’t something you entirely moved on. In this kind of situation, even our parents may not be able to know what to say or do, how to talk about it with their children. So I really hope that, as you’re older now, you’ll be able to share about how you feel with them one day. Because it sounds that, as parents, they would be glad to be there for you and reassure you. It’s also part of a healing process. But I understand that it can be scary and feel like you’d open again those wounds.

You are such a loving person to your siblings and family. What you did, talking to your younger siblings and answer their questions was certainly needed and is a wonderful thing to do. But in all of this I just want to remind you that you matter too, such as your feelings. So I’m glad you can at least talk about it here. And you’ll always be free to do so. :heart:

Sending love your way.