I feel so second rate in the extended family. Years ago one of my grandparents was an alcoholic and so my parents pulled away. They said they did this to protect our immediate family. If it was Christmas we did not go to the family gathering. If there was a baptism we kids were left with our other set of grandparents and only our parents went. If there was an event for a cousin like her eighth grade graduation we stayed home while everybody else went. Even Easter Sunday we had to stay home when my grandmother would have something for the kids.Once we reached high school my dad allowed us to start seeing the grandparent that had alcoholism again. On top of that she had improved greatly and the alcoholism was no longer as severe as it had been. However, my mother still insisting on holidays at only doing her side of the family. The tradition was my dad did not want to come so people overlooked inviting us. We would see the grandparents at this point but we still missed out on most family events. This point we were not even asked because my dad always had said no at holidays because of the drinking but later because of his fear of his mother-in-law, my mom’s mom. They fear of displeasing her greatly. so now years later the grandparents of died but I still get this guilt and shame and sadness on holidays like the coming Easter holiday that my family is second rate and never got the memories of being together with everybody. The family doesn’t do as much now that the grandparents of died and a lot of the cousins live spread out across the country. However, for holidays my parents still fear my mom‘s mom is the sole surviving grandparent. They always decline invites from my dad‘s family for holidays with vague excuses. When my grandmother would travel we would go see the in-laws of my mom‘s brother. These were the years that we really should’ve been with Dad‘s family. Instead we go see my uncles in-laws which include an alcoholic, a convicted sex offender who should not be around children, and a lot of people that we just did not know as it was the uncle‘s wife’s family and not ours. I always felt so ashamed that our parents saw them instead of the family where we should be. The uncle is divorced now so his in-laws are total strangers these days anyway. His ex-wife I’m discouraged from talking to. so I feel so hurt and second rate not because of the drinking but because of my parents reaction to the drinking. The alcoholic was always perfectly nice to me. I’m told she would get very grouchy when drunk and I don’t doubt that she would’ve probably snapped at me a few times as a hyperactive little cat. However, when my parents say they pulled away to protect us that put the guilt on me. That means that I was the cause of a five-year estrangement. That just makes me feel so much more guilty and so much more like my dad’s family must look at us a second rate. I also fear they may blame us for the estrangement the way my mother has pulled away from her niece after her brothers divorce as though her niece is guilty because she’s on the side with the ex-wife, the niece’s mother. My mothers family see some second rate and so I fear my father‘s family might do this also. holidays that involve family are so hard for me knowing that I am a second right person in the family.