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Some days back I referred to Pope Francis declaring 2014 as the Year of the Family for Catholics. There was a short letter on the paper yesterday from an 80 year old about the lack of family in her case. Her mother always told her, she says, that a good neighbour was more important.

She writes: "I have a husband (a jealous bastard) and 7 children, all grown up and married, who couldn't care less if I was in hell. I don't have one friend, and am depressed. None of my family speaks to me even though they take my money as if I am their ATM machine. I have never seen some of my grandchildren and wouldn't recognise some of my sons and daughters . . ."

There are always two sides to every story but surely there must be a solution to a difficult situation like this.


I agree, there is always two sides to a story.
I get a lot of that working in a hospital. Either from patients or coworkers. :p
In the case of that lady, it's terrible that her family isn't nicer to her, but when I look at that letter I can't help but think, if she's that bitter when her family is around, no wonder they don't want to see her. :(
Hugs, Jon
Especially when she does not seem to have any friendly neighbours.
Exactly. :o
Perhaps she should divorce the husband and go and live nearer her children? Also, is it her the children don't want to see or him? Or is it the horrible atmosphere that exists between husband and wife in what used to be the family home that keeps them away? Or perhaps she has a cruel tongue and the grown up children want to keep their grandchildren away from her remarks?
That is certainly a possibility.
Being a good Protestant boy, I keep in touch with and see my parents on a regular basis.
Good for you (and them).
It is all very fine and large to exalt family and for many people it's a wonderful thing, but I am estranged from my natal family and haven't seen my parents in forty plus years. For more than a few people, 'family' are, sadly, a nightmare.

My family is mostly my chosen family and those relatives who still think I'm a human being. And yes, good neighbours of all manner of races, creeds and colours, such as we have, are a godsend and a joy. :o)

These things are never as simple as they may look.

Edited at 2014-01-13 13:07 (UTC)
As I say, there are always two sides in situations like this.
most of what would have been my family of origin was killed in world war 2. i daresay my father would find this comment of the pope's fairly disingenuous, despite having accepted my catholic husband and in-laws.
There are a lot of elderly people out there who are ignored by family simply because they are old and near the breadline. Regrettably, many people are shallow and acquisitive enough that a potential inheritance is required for them to display common humanity, let alone familial love.