My brother and father make fun of me for caring so much about social justice issues. They'll do things like mockingly say, "it must be the patriarchy!" anytime anyone brings up anything wrong in the world, trying to needle me. And then they say, "oh, it's just a joke! Stop being so sensitive!" when I get upset. They will do this (and other things, it would take too long to go into every example) over and over again until I snap, and then I'M the bitch for "biting their heads off."
Today I tried to stand up for myself to my brother, by telling him that it really hurts my feelings when he is so mocking and dismissive. And he started saying that he didn't mean to be dismissive of the things I care about, and he's sorry I was offended, but it just seems like there are SO MANY things that I care about that he just can't say anything right.
Apparently I am just a hysterical woman who cares about too many silly little things (like sexism and racism), and since none of them are valid things to care about, he can't possibility be expected to keep track of them all, and also if I'm "offended by so many things, maybe [I] should reconsider some of them."
WHAT. THE. ACTUAL. FUCK. That is not an apology! Saying he's sorry that I was offended, but it's really all my fault for being so easily offended, is NOT A GODDAMN APOLOGY. I am not an overly sensitive person! I just think that I should be able to expect decent treatment from my own immediate family, and that when I say my feelings are hurt, that should get some acknowledgement. They make me want to stop traveling here for the holidays, they really do.
I don't even know what to do now. My brother seems to think that he has done nothing wrong. I cannot have a relationship with someone where I can't stand up for myself. If I'm not allowed to stand up for myself, I cut off the friendship, period. I have been made to give in to keep the peace in my family my entire life, but I am older now and I don't let anyone else mistreat me, so why should I let them? I can't stand the idea of biting my tongue through abuse every Christmas for the rest of my life but I don't know if they will ever change. :(