ASK AMY: Aunt wants to find long lost family


Dear Amy: My older sister’s first marriage ended badly. Her husband cheated on her several times and stole money from our parents.

When they divorced, he took the children away.

I was still in high school and I didn’t know the reasons.

No one on our side of the family has seen my sister’s children for more than 20 years. I never forgot them. With the advance of social networks, I was finally able to find them.

My sister has since remarried and has a 10 year old son younger than his half siblings. I am very close to this nephew. He mentioned that he sometimes wished he was not an only child and that he often felt alone.

I almost knocked over the beans at that time and he has two half-siblings, but I was able to stick my tongue out.

My sister now has health problems and is going blind. I want our family to reconnect with my niece and nephew, and I want my sister to see her children while she still can.

I told my mother about my discovery. She said it could be too stressful for my sister, given her health. She asked me not to tell her about it.

I am so torn apart. I think my sister would love to see her children long lost, but at the same time, she could be ashamed and heartbroken during all the years she was not there for them.

My husband thinks I should just leave it alone, because it’s not my story to find the end, but I can’t do it.

I really liked these kids and wish to see them and have a relationship with them. I think my youngest nephew deserves to know that he has brothers and sisters. What should I do?

– Sad family situation

Dear sad: Despite your mother’s protective advice, I think you should bring this to your sister. Let her decide what she wants to do. If she wants to try to reconcile, you could offer to help her establish the connection.

You have to accept it as a fact that no one in your family wants your sister to feel hurt or upset, but – it could have weighed heavily on her mind and heart. You can hope that with your support, she will feel brave enough to attempt reconciliation.

You should all understand that contacting these long lost children does NOT guarantee a happy outcome. They may not want to reconnect. You say that you do not know the reason why they had no contact with their mother (they may not have been safe with her). If they had been raised by their father, he could have created a story in their household that does not promote reconciliation.

You should not bring this information to your young nephew. You don’t mention his age, but he shouldn’t be burdened with this difficult dilemma until he is emotionally old enough to make his own choices – and manage the consequences.

Dear Amy: I just read your response to “Wondering Wife”, who had the insight that her husband could have Aspergers.

I have been married to a wonderful man for almost 50 years. When the show “Big Bang Theory” was first released, I said, “I know people like that – in fact, I’m married! “

Thank you for writing that Aspergers (Autism Spectrum Disorder) is “not a disease or illness. It’s just a unique way of thinking, seeing and interacting. “

I gave up on “wondering” about my husband years ago.

You have to look beyond their actions and assume “gaps” in relation to what is in their hearts.

– CS

Dear CS: Knowing more about how people with ASD perceive and respond to the world, and having the right label – can help.


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