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Carolyn Hax / Life Advice

Family Matters

Adapted from a recent online discussion.

Hi, Carolyn:

My brother and his now-fiancee "ruined" my wedding day by (her) causing a huge scene at my reception. We never received apologies, and have heard they're telling people we exaggerated what happened that day, and that we're just as much to blame (completely false).

Since then, my brother became engaged to this wretched woman, and now wants me to help him prep for his big day. We haven't spoken much since my wedding. I can't get over that they won't even acknowledge their wrongdoing.

At what point do you forgive, forget and "move on"? It feels as if that would be saying to them: "What you did is OK. All is forgiven." I ... just ... can't. I want back the (extremely close) relationship with my brother that I had before SHE entered the picture. But I feel all hope is gone.

-- Family Matters

With so little information I can only speculate, but the major attention-seeking behavior, the disinformation, and your brother's withdrawal from a close sibling relationship suggest he's in a relationship with an abusive woman.

So, while I get your despair and reluctance to lie ("All is forgiven"), I urge you to restart some sort of communication with your brother. Does he live close enough for you to buy him lunch?

Carolyn:

He lives a few minutes away. I've offered to get together for lunch, but since I refused to help him with wedding prep, I think a chance for reconciliation is gone.

...continued

Copyright 2012 Washington Post Writers Group



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