I come from a very broken family. I am the middle child of three siblings who were born to my mother during her crack addiction in the 80’s. (We don’t all share the same father, but that isn’t relevant to the sibling I need help for) We all had pretty rough childhoods. My siblings and I were all split up into different homes because our parents were unable to care for us and it had a very different impact on the three of us because of where we ended up. This post is about my older sibling, I’ll call her Anne for the sake of her privacy.
My sister went to live with our shared father’s family as she was a few years older when my father and mother split up. She lived very far away and we didn’t see her or my father for many years after that. In that time, a lot of awful things happened to her and she suffered from not having her mother at all. To be honest, our parents were extremely selfish and too angry at each other to put our best interest first and we all suffered for it. I fared a bit better than my sister as I was placed with my maternal grandparents. Our family has generational addiction issues, so my grandfather was an alcoholic with major problems in his own right, but my grandparents put me in therapy and were very well off, so in many ways I had it much better than my sister.
Bad things happened to my sister while she was living with our father’s family. I won’t go into details, but that side of the family had it’s own share of mental health issues and addiction. People were able to do things to her when she was little that were horrible and it was because no one was there to protect her or watch her. I want to cry when I think about how she must have felt as a little child. It left her with a lot of emotional scars. She moved back to live with our mother (who was ostensibly sober at that point) and even more traumatic stuff happened due to neglect in that home. It was not an easy childhood for her.
She has suffered with substance abuse issues, eating disorder problems and has been diagnosed with a few mental health disorders. At one point she was drinking heavily to self-medicate, but has now replaced that with smoking meth. She tells people that she has ADHD and that meth is medication that she needs. She always says "I don’t look like a tweaker, do I?" and gets upset if anyone tells her the truth, that she does. Her teeth are falling out, her skin looks dry and wrinkled and her conversations are nearly impossible to follow. She just talks non-stop for hours about very inappropriate things and hustles off to the bathroom every few hours to smoke again.
This is so much worse because she has three children who have never really known a normal life. My sister has moved them around frequently (sometimes fleeing places in the middle of the night with little more than their clothing) and removed them all from school when CPS nearly caught up with them. She claims that they are home schooled now, but that is very unlikely. I had them over for a recent holiday and she literally ignored them. She didn’t feed them, bathe them, take them to do anything or even discipline them if they acted up. The youngest says disturbingly sexual things and they are all fixated on death and murder and sex. She seems to have lost all sense of responsibility to them and it is so disturbing.
I wanted to intervene earlier, but my mother asked me to wait. Then nothing happened. I know that in reality, my mother just doesn’t want to do anything to help because it will be work, but this can’t go on much longer. I love my sister, but I can’t sit back and watch this. I really want to get her some kind of help, though I am not sure she will accept it. It is more important to me that the kids are removed from her for now, so they can go back to school and get into therapy. I suspect they have now been through a lot since my sister associates with some shady characters (including their own father) and they are left alone with people. I am not willing to wait any longer for my mother. I just don’t know where to start. I have a young child of my own who has special needs, and my husband and I are not particularly wealthy. My ability to help her is limited. I hate that I am contemplating calling authorities on my sister, but this can’t continue.
Can anyone give me advice or just offer some support? I can give more details if anyone needs them. There is a LOT more to this story than I have put here, but I don’t want to trample on my sister’s privacy too much. She has an addiction but she is not a bad person. It has led to some very dangerous choices though and her kids should not be around it. Thank you in advance for anything you can. I feel helpless right now.