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Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

How far do you take "the blood is thicker than the mud" in backing family members?

Asked by Hypocrisy_Central (26829points) July 19th, 2010

How far would you go to have a family member’s back? I have family who believe you should stand behind the family right or wrong no matter what. If a brother, cousin was in the wrong would you take their side just because you share familiar DNA or blood line? Would you love them just the same but if they are wrong not support it? If said family members tried to guilt you into backing their play do you cave in a follow the majority or stick to your guns and go by what was correct in the situation even if it was against family members?

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19 Answers

Seaofclouds's avatar

It depends on which family member it was. I wouldn’t do anything that would risk getting me in trouble. If that meant I had to stick to my guns and go against them, I would. I have other people in my family to worry about other than that one person that’s up to no good.

jesienne's avatar

To be honest, I would hold the guns in my hand and stick to what is correct. This kind of thing is a very frequent occurrence in my family, which gives me a big headache. I always have values that are different from my parents and it seems like we can never make a compromise, they told me that what I’ve been holoding on to will cause me big disasters, I know what they’ve done is not for their good, but for the whole family, and they never hurt other people. just free yourself and relinquish the judgement. At least they love you,truly

YARNLADY's avatar

I believe in emotional support for family, no matter what, but that doesn’t include taking their side even when they are wrong. I means being there for them, and trying to help them through their issues.

perspicacious's avatar

Guess I’m lucky in that I haven’t ever really been torn in this way. Maybe that means my family is always right. :)

Pandora's avatar

It depends on how honorable the family member is and how valuable the other person is in my life.
I actually encountered that situation this weekend. I know of someone who is hurt because her parent in laws dumped her after her and her spouse broke up. She lost her parents years ago and considered them as parents for years. She wasn’t squeeky clean in the break up but neither was her former spouse.
I would like to think in a matter such as this that I would side with neither and remain kind to both. If our relationship was a strong bond then I would continue to see both as my children blood or not.
I actually have an ex sister in law that we still see as a family member. However, in that case, it was easy to know which side to stick with. My brother was and still is a difficult person to deal with.
Sometimes it also depends on how close you are to the family member.
I believe that blood is thicker than MUD or WATER, if you really didn’t care for the other person to begin with or, you are the type of person able to ignore the relatives wrongs in the first place.

MacBean's avatar

I stick by who I think is right, regardless of my relationship with them.

Cruiser's avatar

There is a line they would have to cross where I would actually be the one to initiate justice. No blood for me is thicker than just plain wrong. Child abuse is one of those lines, terrorism is another I can think of and I’m sure there are others.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

If they’re wrong they’re wrong and I won’t support that no matter who it is.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

I don’t believe blood is thicker than mud, whatsoever. So, if they’re wrong, they’re wrong as @lucillelucillelucille said.

Jabe73's avatar

If someone in my family was obviously in the wrong no I wouldn’t side with them. My reason for this is that I would expect the same back from somebody else if someone in their family wronged me or someone else I knew. I’ve been in some tough spots because of this.

MaryW's avatar

Breaking the law and being immoral are not things I support in anyway. Helping someone who is really helping themselves as much as they are able is a different matter.

wundayatta's avatar

I don’t know how any answer I might give would be relevant, since it is a completely hypothetical question for me. It’s hard to imagine it being anything other than a hypothetical question.

I think the answer depends on the circumstances. I would probably give a family member more of a benefit of a doubt than others. Or I might be willing to stand behind them more, even if they had done something wrong. But I’m not going to back them to the bitter end. I’m not going to mortgage my house to pay their legal bills. I don’t think.

Austinlad's avatar

Family dynamics are complicated and unique to each family. Hard and maybe even wrong for me to counsel you on your particular situation when much of the time I can’t figure out my own. I know this sounds cliche, but you have to do what you think is right. Yes, you run the risk of offending or hurting another family member no matter whose side you take, but isn’t that life?

tranquilsea's avatar

I’ve always stood by what is right and I’ve taken enormous amounts of heat for it.

I may have to take another stand against my family as I may be subpoenaed to testify in a child abuse case. The whole thing has torn me up inside but I’ll do what is best for the children involved.

tinyfaery's avatar

The only person I would support/back-up no matter what is my wife. And even then I’d tell her if I thought she was wrong. The mud I share with my wife is thicker than any blood. The blood ties between and me and my “family” run thin.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@wundayatta It could be seen as hypothetical, but in many cases over the years if one thinks of it they run into similar situations. Such as (the names have been changed to protect the Boorish and stupid) you have a family member “Brenda” who has a b/f “Lonzo”, they have a very rocky relationship that often turns physical. Brenda runs over to my house (or another family) and say that her and Lonzo got into it and he did this or that and show bruises or cuts. Other family member “Lee Harvey” wants to go over and beat Lonzo into the middle of next week with out investigating what happened; even when he knows that sometimes Brenda is the instigator. When I don’t get all hot headed and want to make a bee line over to pummel Lonzo down like a tent stake or upon investigation I see he got a worse beating see it as mutual combat and choose to stay out of it I am a traitor not backing the blood because just because Brenda is blood I should be ready and willing to beat down anyone she says maligned her. If she got pissed at him and wanted to steal his CDs, key his truck etc, I am expected to “back her up” in the endeavor and if I don’t I am not loyal to the family (forgetting the fact that I bail them out of crap more times than one can shake a stick at).

wundayatta's avatar

The closest thing that ever happened like that in my family is one time my brother had a tenant who was playing loud music all night and doing some other shit—he might have been mentally ill—there was talk of zoloft and such and an attempt to get his mother involved.

Anyway, I was concerned, because I didn’t want my brother hurt, but I also didn’t want to go to NYC to deal with it. My main goal was to get the lout out. He was going to fight any eviction attempt with yet more obnoxious tactics, and in NYC it can take months to get someone out. Maybe even a year or more.

So I suggested he be bought out. My brother was too close to the situation and too angry to be willing to compromise. In the end, that’s what he and my father did. Paid the guy money to get the hell out. Cheaper than getting a lawyer and engaging in legal battles all the way.

If a friend had been in the same situation, I’m not sure I would have gotten involved, personally. I would have just provided advice. But in this case, worried about my brother who, even though I rarely see him, is still my brother, I made the call and got the ball rolling.

If my brother had been harassing the tenant—I’m not sure what I would have done. However, in that case, it probably never would have come to my attention.

Kraigmo's avatar

I think some support is OK. It depends on the crime, and depends if its one time thing, or perpetual.

But not the kind where you overlook the crime, or the kind where you tell the press “he really is a good person” (thus spitting on the victims).

Quiet, behind-the-scenes love and support, without any tacit approval of the crime, is natural and probably helpful for everyone.

But if a relative were a serial predator…. I’d probably turn him in.

jerv's avatar

Personally, I do not get along well with most of my family. Most of them are people that I am just not terribly close to, and a few (one cousin, my step-sister, and most of my inlaws) are people that I wouldn’t even think of lifting a finger for.

About the only person I would go to bat for is my wife.

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