Something i'm having trouble with in this family is the lying. It's allegedly for good intentions, but i just don't feel comfortable with it. The other day J got a buzz cut. It was a hot day, she didn't have the money for a style cut, she likes the look, it'll grow back in a couple months anyway, so why not? Of course the parents were appalled, but instead of just saying "my daughter got her hair cut short" they're saying she shaved her head for cancer. Seriously. And i'm supposed to maintain the lie. Or when we had the wedding and we didn't want to invite some cousins, instead of just not inviting them we had to pretend there wasn't enough room for them in the wedding chambers and then invite them to dinner anyway. Or how i don't come to every Friday night dinner with the family because some nights i'm "working" or "playing basketball". I hate that shit!
In my family we don't talk a lot. My parents, my sister, my extended family back in Europe - they don't know everything about my life because i don't tell them everything. Over the years i've been learning to share more and not omit important details, but i have never deliberately lied to them. It's gotten me in trouble sometimes ("do i look fat in this?"), but it's a really strongly-held value of mine.
One of the reasons i don't trust my in-laws here is because they lie when they think it'll make life easier or keep the peace or this or that. How can i trust people who i know have no ethical problem telling untruths? I keep feeling like they are going behind my back or presenting me as something i'm not or creating fake excuses for me or forcing me one way or the other and springing shit on me without warning, pulling guilt trips... It's driving me fucking crazy because no one can just talk straight up with anyone else - i'd almost rather it was more like my family where no one fucking talks to anyone (except me).
I know i am being a dick to everyone right now. I'm anxious, i'm manic (or i was, now i'm not so sure), i'm culture-shocked, i'm stressed... It's a recipe for being a dick. So i am avoiding spending too much time with family because i don't want to snap, knowing they are one of the main things contributing to my anxiety and my culture shock and my stress. But instead of anyone coming to ask me what's up, they go to J and put her on the spot, then they start making up lies and everyone else starts asking me how "work" is going, which just makes it worse. I guess the solution would be for me to be the bigger person and break out of the web of bullshit by announcing to everyone all of my problems, but that leads back to my anxiety and lack of trust, and then we're right back at the start of this entry so what am i supposed to do?
In other news, i'm really proud of the fact i went to my first Spanish class last night. I had to interact with complete strangers and stand up in front of everyone to introduce myself - terrible accent and all. Those few hours last night have challenged my social skills more than anything i've done in 10+ years. Giving a presentation at work is scary, but it's just work so i put on a mask and do it. This was me! Really me, standing up in front of a bunch of people and making a fool of myself and i did it! Learning a new language is going to be a lot harder than learning about food and cooking, and i am really looking forward to pushing myself further than ever before.