Life Advice



Ask Amy: In-law might bring a stowaway virus on her visit

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

I called my first cousin to let her know that my mom and great-uncle (her aunt and great-uncle) were in the hospital.

Her deceased father was their older brother, and they had been very good about checking on her parents and helping them prior to their death.

My cousin never called back to check on either my mom or our uncle.

I have been genuinely shocked by her lack of concern about their welfare.

Then this week I received an invitation to her daughter's wedding.

I am flabbergasted that she would have the audacity to send an invitation to family that she obviously cares so little about.


What is an appropriate response to this situation?

– Frustrated First Cousin

Dear Frustrated: My sense is that your cousin has not linked the two events (these illnesses and the wedding invitation) that are so important to you.

Please, be honest with her! Reach out to her, saying, “Mom and great-uncle Joe seem to be recovering from their health emergencies. I have to be honest with you; this has been a very rough time. Why haven’t you been in touch before now?”


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