My sister whom I loved dearly is dating my brother-in-law’s cousin. My problem is how she met him.
She says that my BIL and SIL (my husband's sister) attended a bar she frequents Sunday afternoons and said they had someone for her.
She had 35 boyfriends during her prowling years even while married. She mothered four boys, one from an earlier affair who learned years later that his father who raised him was not his biological dad. She’d left her husband to marry this man who was her second child's father. Eighteen months later, he went back to his wife.
My sister’s now 75, still searching for Mr. Right.
She forgets whom she destroys in her path.
My husband's sister made sure years ago that my husband was disinherited so she and her other brother could jointly own a lakeside cottage built by the grandfather for the whole family.
The grandfather’s daughter inherited the cottage when her parents passed, which put the granddaughter in line to ensure SHE got it.
She didn't exclude the other brother as they’re both alike and he would’ve fought her.
My sister, knowing that my SIL and her husband had purposely destroyed the family, now hangs with them and has stopped all communication. She’s dating the husband’s cousin, 72.
Now both sides of our once-close family are enemies thanks to those two selfish, narcissistic, sociopaths who care about themselves only.
I’ll never speak to them again but now our children have no contact with cousins on either side.
Hurt Beyond Belief
That’s a lot of anger to swallow. But swallow it you must if you want to raise your own kids to think/behave differently from the selfish relatives you describe.
Stop obsessing on who colluded with whom to disinherit who else, since none of that’s going to change, unless you launch an expensive and nasty lawsuit. It’s probably too late anyway.
Better to 1) Go camping or rent a cottage at a lakeside to get the summertime benefits for your family in whatever way you can manage. 2) Recognize that your sister was lonely, has had a different lifestyle from yours when it comes to men, and is sadly still searching for a stable relationship while you’ve apparently been lucky in your choice of mate, and in having a stable marriage.
Even if you can’t forgive your sister for aligning with in-laws whom you dislike, you can still reach out to her sons and maintain cousin contact between your children. They likely need your support.
Families aren’t perfect. But you still have the choice to be the best person you can.
I’ve regularly participated in two major annual parades. However, one volunteer behaves like a bull in a china shop.
She demands to carry the Grand Marshal parade banner and threatens to walk out otherwise.
Her behaviour creates unnecessary stress and takes the fun out of volunteering. I have to bite my tongue when around her.
For one parade I was on the list to carry the Grand Marshal banner. But this woman threatened to go home unless she got her way. She did.
I’ve complained to the parade organizer to no avail. Is it inappropriate to go above the organizer to get something done about this?
Every volunteer counts in organization work. It’s already thankless work for those having to manage so many personalities, and complaints make it harder. Enjoy being in any part of the parade.
FEEDBACK Regarding the letter from the grandmother who goes to a Christmas dinner in the evening of Christmas day (July 5):
Reader – “As a widowed senior I think she’s quite lucky. My family usually has a get together each with their own family on the day and then we have a group dinner, but not on Christmas day.
“I see them all through the season but not on the day.
I live in a retirement home and usually eat in my residence on Christmas day. I eat with many others who are alone on the day.
“As families grow, tradition changes. In-laws happen. Some people work that day.
“I was very unhappy at first but if my family’s happy, I'm happy.
“The best thing to do is count your blessings as they happen.”
Ellie – Your family is lucky to have your wisdom, understanding, and adaptability for them to model.
Tip of the day:
It’s the clinging to family rifts that divide even the next generation. Reach across that gap wherever possible.