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Woman seeks reunion with estranged family

Posted: May 29, 2013 8:39 a.m.
Updated: May 29, 2013 5:00 a.m.

Dear Annie: My bullheaded 50-year-old daughter has taken gossip from 32 years ago to make my life a living hell. I have four grown children. My older daughter called everyone she could think of and told them I molested my son when he was 5. My daughter never checked to see whether it was true. I have never been arrested for this or had charges filed against me. She further told all the grandchildren and great-grandchildren that they should never stop at my home.

I am 74 years old, have trouble breathing and have cancer that is currently in remission. I want to see my family before it’s too late. My daughter called my sister-in-law and told her she will not go to my funeral when I die. I have been denied visits and phone calls from family members for three years. I desperately need my family to visit. -- Sad and Lonely

Dear Sad:

Dear Annie:

Dear Hubbard:

Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please email your questions to anniesmail, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 737 3rd Street, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254.

It may be "fair," but it could estrange you from your sister, not to mention your nephews. What does Grandma think? If she is of sound mind and wants all of her grandsons to receive equal shares, you have an obligation to follow her wishes. You could discuss with her the option of deducting the money her grandson has already borrowed from whatever is left of his share. You also could give the grandson an object of sentimental value in lieu of money, so he doesn’t believe his grandmother forgot about him. Whatever the final decision, please discuss it with your sister as a gesture of good faith and ask her opinion. She may or may not agree with your assessment, but at least she won’t be shocked and angry when the time comes.
I’m one of two daughters. Both of us have two sons. Long story short, one of my sister’s sons has borrowed thousands of dollars from Grandma, received a nice car and has never paid any money back. The other three boys have never borrowed a penny. I am the executor of Grandma’s estate and have power of attorney. When something happens to Grandma, I’m in charge. She’s not going to have a million dollars, but when her estate is eventually divided, I believe it would be perfectly fair to exclude the one grandson. What do you think? -- Trouble in Hubbard
You say charges were never filed, nor were you arrested, but you haven’t said that you are innocent of the accusation. If the gossip is true, we completely understand why your daughter would want everyone to stay away. If it is not true, you need to make it clear to the rest of the family that your daughter is spreading lies. Please ask whether she would be willing to go with you for counseling to clear this up and to see whether there is any possibility of reconciling before it is too late.


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