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“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Wilmington, IL

#1 Aug 8, 2013
DEAR AMY: My dear sister took her own life nine years ago at age 45, having suffered from mental illness for most of her adult life.

When she was 20, my sister married a man who had little compassion and his own drug problems. They had two children during all this chaos and then divorced. The kids were estranged for a time from their mom, partly due to her ex-husband's constant smears, but the last few years of her life she had a pretty good relationship with her children, and I was happy for that.

At the time of my sister's death, the kids were both young adults.

Soon after her death, I received a notebook of various items belonging to my sister.

Among them are notes she kept, per advice from her divorce lawyer, concerning her ex-husband. There are notes taken that are not complimentary about her ex, and what she went through before, during and after the divorce.

There are also personal recommendations that were given to my sister that say lovely things about her, as well as cards and pictures.(Despite her problems she was a sweet child, woman and mother.)

I wish to send this whole notebook to her adult daughter (she's 31).

Should I edit this notebook, taking out things that are not complimentary of this adult child's father, with whom she has a relationship? Or should I send everything, because it is her mother's history?

It feels wrong to "pick and choose" just to keep the unpleasant side of things hidden. What do you say?-- Missing My Sis

DEAR MISSING: Records gathered and kept during a relationship's lowest point (divorce) represent a perspective designed to present one person's most negative behavior. Because your sister is gone and can't edit or revise this portion of her personal papers, you have to ask yourself, "What purpose will sharing this serve?"

In this case, I think you should edit the notebook, pass the material about your sister along to her daughter, and let her know that you have redacted portions having to do with their divorce. If she wishes to see them, share them with her.

DEAR AMY: I am leaving in a few short weeks to study abroad for a semester in England. I've been waiting for this for years, and I'm ecstatic.

For the past 10 months I've been dating a great guy who is supportive about my going abroad. He says that although it will be different, he is not worried.

I wasn't worried either, until one of my professors told me that two-thirds of all relationships fail when one partner goes abroad.

Amy, I don't want this to fail. I want to be in the third of relationships that survive.

Any advice for keeping the relationship strong while separated by thousands of miles?

His visiting is not an option, but I know technology will be a godsend.-- Long Distance Love

DEAR LONG DISTANCE: A separation of limited duration is easily survivable. You and your guy should have a standing Skype date a couple of times a week, and you can easily email updates and photos back and forth (international texting and calling is expensive). Writing and sending letters is also a great way to share your own experience.

Technology collapses distances. My caution for you is to not shackle yourself to your relationship (and technology) so much that you would waste this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to actually be in a foreign country.

DEAR AMY: I sympathize with the man ("Snored Out") who wrote about his snoring girlfriend.

My partner is a tremendous snorer. At first, I tried earplugs, but eliminating the sound caused me to realize he is also a restless sleeper.

Finally we realized the most considerate, loving choice was to sleep in separate beds at night (even if we start out in the same bed, one or the other leaves to seek sleep).

It works for us, and we still find ways to be intimate throughout the day -- fully rested and happy with each other.-- Rested

DEAR RESTED: A "snoring room" makes perfect sense to me.

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me! Charlie

#2 Aug 8, 2013
1 Why should it only be given to 1 child? It should be shared between them. Other than that, the advice is ok. Oh and WTF "Notebook of various items"? That sounds almost like a contradiction in physics.

2 It's one semester honey, if you cant weather that, then the relationship is a bust.

3 Your partner? Code for Gay. Whatever.

Since: Dec 07

DuPage County

#3 Aug 8, 2013
1: Your sister sounds like she was a great catch. Extract yourself from this situation and forward it as is. Not your right to edit anything IMO.

2: There's a very simple reason long-distance relationships usually fail: outta-sight, outta-mind.

3: Snoring rooms? Brilliant!

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#4 Aug 8, 2013
L1: I think Amy is completely wrong. It's not your notebook to "edit." It belongs to your sister, and then to her offspring. Tell the daughter what's in there, including giving her a heads up as to some negative content about the father, and then if the daughter wants it, give it ALL to her. Unedited.

Alternatively: Think of your sister's frame of mind. Would she want her kids to read the nasty things about their only remaining parent? Think about that.

L2: Don't give up your educational and professional dreams for anyone!

L3: Wow. Hottest rehash yet from this hack.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#5 Aug 8, 2013
Lw3: Oops, washington post reran yesterday's facebook cheater letter.

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me! Charlie

#6 Aug 8, 2013
I dont remember that?
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
Lw3: Oops, washington post reran yesterday's facebook cheater letter.

“Not a real reg”

Since: Jan 13

Location hidden

#7 Aug 8, 2013
L2: Absence makes the heart grow fonder?

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#8 Aug 8, 2013
RACE wrote:
I dont remember that?
<quoted text>
The woman who's been married for 40 years and hooked up with her HS sweetheart.
Stina

Saint Petersburg, FL

#9 Aug 8, 2013
LW1: I like Red's thoughts.

LW2: Also agree with Red.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Chicago, IL

#10 Aug 8, 2013
1- She's gonna want the good memories, not the negative ones. I say edit.

2- Why do you have to go to Europe to study a broad? There are plenty here. But anyway, you know you're both gonna cheat on each other.

3- There are remedies for snoring.

“On Deck”

Since: Aug 08

French Polynesia

#11 Aug 8, 2013
L1. I'm with Red. It is all or nothing.
Give it to her without tampering with the contents.

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

Location hidden

#12 Aug 8, 2013
L1 Why is this coming up 9 years after you received the notebook?

The kids knew what was going on and what their parents relationship was like. Don't edit it. There is a name for doing that :Bowdlerize. It is not complimentary to the editor

L2 Tough it out. Military people and sailors have done it for as long as people could travel. If it doesn't last, best to find out early.

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me! Charlie

#13 Aug 8, 2013
Ohhh, gotcha!
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
<quoted text>
The woman who's been married for 40 years and hooked up with her HS sweetheart.

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me! Charlie

#14 Aug 8, 2013
While I normally agree to leaving things un-edited, the kids do have a relationship with their father, and bringing in the sullied views of their mother will do nothing good.

Its like siblings who each have different memories of a parent. Even though they all grew up together, they really cant relate to the memories the other has of the parent because it is not a shared memory, and if one sibling has a bad memory, is it fair to share that and ruin someone view of that parent to the other child?

“The two baby belly, please!”

Since: Sep 09

Evanston IL

#15 Aug 8, 2013
LW1: What Red said.

LW2: "Amy, I don't want this to fail. I want to be in the third of relationships that survive."

Great, then keep your panties on no matter how alluring the accent is of the boy asking you to take off your knickers.

LW3: In our house, the snoring room is called the couch.

Since: Aug 08

Location hidden

#16 Aug 8, 2013
LW1: Just give them the cards and pictures, not the notebook. The personal recommendations or lovely things said about her and the bad stuff, is more private in nature.

I fail to see why my children would ever need to know personal recommendations given to me by third parties or what people they donít even know thought of me. I might feel differently about what others said about her if they didnít know their mother at all, but they knew her and certainly had their own thoughts about who she was.

LW2: If you can't survive a semester apart, how are you going to survive over the long haul? If you get there and it fails, then it wasnít meant to be. Neither of you should force it if it is not there.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Chicago, IL

#17 Aug 8, 2013
Her daughter isn't gonna want to hear about all the sordid details if her parents' divorce.
pde

Homer Glen, IL

#18 Aug 8, 2013
RACE wrote:
1 Why should it only be given to 1 child? It should be shared between them. Other than that, the advice is ok. Oh and WTF "Notebook of various items"? That sounds almost like a contradiction in physics.
It's a scrapbook. Before the whole scrapbooking craze took off a decade or so back and companies developed loads of specialized books to sell at high prices, many people just used notebooks as scrapbooks. You can write on some pages and glue or pin stuff on other pages.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#19 Aug 8, 2013
OVer at the Wapo forum on this, someone whose father committed suicide got similar documents after his death and insists that it's no one's business to edit anything or to protect adult children, that the adult children are entitled to the whole picture.

Since: Aug 08

Location hidden

#20 Aug 8, 2013
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
OVer at the Wapo forum on this, someone whose father committed suicide got similar documents after his death and insists that it's no one's business to edit anything or to protect adult children, that the adult children are entitled to the whole picture.
It's really what the mother would have wanted, not what the children want. If I were to divorce my wife and it were acrimonious, I wouldn't want my children knowing the unpleasant details of the divorce, if I were to pass and even if I came out smelling like a rose by virtue of such a disclosure.

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