A couple of months ago, I had to cut off communication with my 30-year-old brother. We have had a volatile relationship for many years, in part because he is a recovering addict. When he was drinking or using, there were a number of really horrific incidents, but I had always assumed that once he got sober, we would be able to mend (or at least improve) our relationship. Unfortunately, his sobriety has not been the magic solution I was hoping for.
He and I have different political views, ideas about gender, and levels of education. Whenever we are together in person, he will make disparaging comments about people who are educated, yell about people with different political opinions, and generally create an incredibly uncomfortable atmosphere. My father and I are also really different, but we have been able to maintain a relationship, because we don’t talk about politics and religion. With my brother, though, it’s gotten to the point where even if I try to establish a healthy boundary and say something like “You can’t talk to me like that,” he accuses me of “playing the victim” and then continues to scream.
I don’t live in the same state as him now, so not talking to him is easier than it used to be, but we still had something of a relationship until a few months ago, when he sent me an ugly Facebook message in response to something I’d posted. After that, I blocked him, because I didn’t want to be treated that way again. The only time I’ve heard from him since was when he messaged me to say that my mother was in the hospital when she wasn’t, which was super manipulative. He has not apologized for any of these actions.