Dying husband won't tell estranged sister

Portrait of Worried Senior Couple
My husband and his sister had a falling out after their parents died and haven't spoken for a few years.

DEAR ABBY: My husband and his sister had a falling out after their parents died and haven't spoken for a few years. My husband is very stubborn and holds grudges.

He is very ill now. I have asked him if he wants to tell his sister about his illness, and he says no. I'm not sure how much longer he has left.

I am thinking about going against his wishes and calling her in the hopes that they can make peace. Your thoughts?

- Not Much Time Left

DEAR NOT MUCH TIME LEFT: Depending upon how deep the rift between them is, I do think you should make a confidential phone call and tell her it might be a good idea to call her brother. If she does, the conversation could be healing for both of them. However, if she chooses to ignore the situation, the choice will have been hers, and no harm will have been done.

 

DEAR ABBY: A couple of years ago, my extended family found a fun, all-inclusive solution to the grumbling (and expense) of preparing the holiday meal.

Each family is assigned a portion of the meal they are going to prepare. For fun, it has to be a recipe that has never been tried before, so no one can fret that it isn't made like Grandma used to make it.

We have tried wonderful variations to the traditional turkey, enjoyed an awesome pie straight from the Renaissance, and learned that we will never again try oyster stuffing. Because the recipes are untried, no one feels bad if the dish isn't perfect, and we have tried things we were surprised we liked.

Most important, we do it together and spend the day laughing, talking and catching up, and no one has to be a slave to the day. Hope this will give other people ideas.

- Scott in Baltimore

DEAR SCOTT: So do I, because your family has captured the true spirit of the holiday season, which is too often lost because of the pressure people put on themselves to achieve perfection.

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