cereta: Laura Cereta (cereta)
Lucy ([personal profile] cereta) wrote in [community profile] agonyaunt2017-05-05 07:34 am

Dear Abby: For Mom Rewriting Her Will, Time With Her Kids Is Money


DEAR ABBY: I divorced my narcissistic husband after our children were raised. Over the years, I have tried to have a relationship with all of my children and their families.

When I asked one of them for a three-day weekend with her children, she texted me saying they all had a lot going on. Then she added, "Maybe next year." I may not be here next year!

I know she may never read this, but it doesn't matter to me if it will help someone who does read it. I have decided to change my will. If I'm not worth my children's time, they don't deserve my money. Your thoughts? -- WORTHLESS UP NORTH

DEAR WORTHLESS: Could it be possible that your daughter and her family are actually busy? Not knowing how you raised your children, it's hard to render an opinion, but from your reaction, you appear to have a troubled relationship with this daughter. Rather than disinherit her, try to find out what motivated her to text what she did so fences can be mended. If that's not possible, then you have every right to reallocate your assets as you wish.
likeaduck: Spock tries to loosen the bars of a cell where he and McCoy are imprisoned. Text: Rose, I'm trying to resonate concrete (dammit jim i'm a vulcan not the doctor)

[personal profile] likeaduck 2017-05-05 01:03 pm (UTC)(link)
Cool, change your will. You get to do what you want with your money. But holding it over your kid's head as a bribe/threat/punishment is not going to contribute to a closer relationship with her & her kids. If you react like this every time someone can't take multiple days out of their life (and other people's) to devote to you I wouldn't want to spend a three day weekend with you either. And on that note, "idk the kids have a lot going on right now, maybe next year?" could be honest truth, but it could also be code for "I/they don't want o spend that much time with you" so I'd invite the LW to consider what they've actually tried in terms of having a closer relationship, and how well that's working. Do they actually have a close relationship now? My feeling is probably not, and that sucks and is hard to accept, but IMO a three-day-weekend with someone is a pretty advanced step in that process, so are there smaller steps that could happen that might help eventually turn the halfhearted-seeming "maybe next year" into actual excitement about spending time together?
vass: a man in a bat suit says "I am a model of mental health!" (Bats)

[personal profile] vass 2017-05-05 01:26 pm (UTC)(link)
"I divorced my narcissistic husband after our children were raised."
"I know she may never read this, but it doesn't matter to me if it will help someone who does read it."
"If I'm not worth my children's time, they don't deserve my money."

I'm sensing a whole toxic stew of family dysfunction just below the surface of those three sentences.

Some things I note:
- she wasn't writing to ask Abby's advice, but to air her grievance.
- the first thing she says in that letter IS that her ex was a narcissist, and it's not relevant to the rest of the letter (unless it was edited for publication) and I think that means something, although I don't know exactly what
- she signed her letter WORTHLESS UP NORTH
- this is total speculation, but "she may never read this" and "tried to have a relationship" suggest to me that the lines of communication are perhaps less open than she implied in this letter. Like, one or more of her children are low-contact or no-contact.

Not trying to diagnose her (or her ex-husband), the actual diagnosis doesn't really matter, I am just saying: I hope Cordelia, Regan, and Goneril don't need the money, because I think they'd be better off without it than trying to audition for a line in her will.
xenacryst: Peanuts charactor looking ... (Peanuts: quizzical me)

[personal profile] xenacryst 2017-05-05 07:23 pm (UTC)(link)
^^ This.

Also, the "maybe next year" response made me stop in my tracks. Certainly, one interpretation is "maybe we can do Memorial Day Weekend with you next year." But what flashed through my head first was "sorry we're busy this year/decade, maybe in another lifetime?" Which, if that's an unwarranted response is certainly something to take umbrage at. But a response like that usually has some history behind it, and I'd be very curious as to what that history is.

Why wouldn't the response be "I'm sorry, Memorial Day Weekend is spoken for, but if you'd like to get together for a longer period of time, maybe we could try the Fourth of July or Labor Day? Are you around for Thanksgiving? Or we might be able to work some vacation and time off schedules to do a three day weekend with more notice." That's the sort of response that indicates an unstrained (if not necessarily frequent) communication. But this? screams "ISSUES" in big red letters, and I'd bet they're not all on one side or the other.
Edited (htmly taggy) 2017-05-05 19:23 (UTC)
minoanmiss: Minoan men carrying offerings in a procession (Offering Bearers)

[personal profile] minoanmiss 2017-05-05 07:35 pm (UTC)(link)
So much this.
jadelennox: Senora Sabasa Garcia, by Goya (Default)

[personal profile] jadelennox 2017-05-06 05:16 am (UTC)(link)
I am just saying: I hope Cordelia, Regan, and Goneril don't need the money, because I think they'd be better off without it than trying to audition for a line in her will.

ILU.