EPISODE 22: Sibling Rivalry ‘Til The Bitter End

Imagine being 85 years old and having not spoken to any of your siblings in over 30 years due to a family rift. The only thing that would make this scenario even more unsettling and bitter would be having to contemplate whether or not you should attend your siblings’ funerals. This is the problem Charlie is addressing this week, sent to Dear Abby by a man who is having second thoughts about how he should handle his lifelong feud with his siblings and whether death will bring him and his family peace, or more hell. 🙅

THE PROBLEM

DEAR ABBY: I’ve been estranged from my three siblings, their spouses and their families for 35 years — my choice. There has been no correspondence, and I have seen them only at our parents’ funerals.

Since we are all in our 80s, I anticipate there will be funerals for us in the next decade. If I go first, there is no problem. However, I’m considering not attending their funerals or those of their spouses. My grown children say I MUST attend because I’m their brother. I’m concerned that I might be a distraction or there could be a confrontation. Besides, I still remember what caused my estrangement and I just don’t want to see them. I know I’m stubborn, but am I wrong? — TO GO OR NOT TO GO

 

Have advice or comments about this week’s problem? Leave your feedback and advice in the comments below, via email at ask[at]nobodyasked.com, or via voicemail below.

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