Life Advice



Ask Amy: Estranged sister longs to reconnect

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Dear Amy: I am a 67-year-old woman. I have one sibling, my brother “Charles,” who is 60. We live very near each other in a rural area.

Over the years Charles has cut ties with nearly all family members, including his three children. Still, he maintained a cordial relationship with my daughter and me – and especially with my son. They were more like brothers than uncle and nephew.

A couple of years ago Charles became very critical of my daughter and became offended by any little comment she made, no matter how innocent.

Then he became that way toward me.

A few weeks ago he came to see me in a rage over some imaginary wrong he thought my son had done to him (my son lives in another state for work, but visits regularly).

Charles told me that he did not want my son around anymore and made horrible accusations against him.


I just listened and when he finally finished ranting, I tried to have a normal conversation with him.

When my son tried to talk to him the situation went from bad to worse, and now they are not speaking.

I have texted Charles a few times and sent him a card for his birthday but have gotten no response.

My brother remarried a few years ago. He has become more isolated since then.


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