Dear Ann Landers, I would like to address this message to the grown children of widowers who are involved in relationships with widows in the evening of their lives. Many of these children do not understand how important we are to one another, and they treat us as if we were "intruders." To these children, I would like to say:
I am the one who makes sure your father takes along a jacket so he doesn't get chilled in an air-conditioned movie theater.
I am the one to whom he tells all his life stories, often more than once, and I still listen to them respectfully.
I am the one who goes to the doctor with him, at his request, to help him remember what the doctor says.
I am the one who plays cards with him as we listen to music, just to keep him company and because I like him.
I am the one who watches that he doesn't eat the foods the doctor has told him he shouldn't have.
I am the one who sits by his bedside in the hospital, making sure he is cared for, fluffing his pillow, speaking to the doctors, reporting back to you and, finally, driving him home to his apartment.
I am also the one who respects and admires your father, values his opinion, appreciates his kindnesses, loves his affection, revels in his compliments and needs his companionship.
You should call me now and then and let me know you are pleased that I am in your father's life. -- Florida Widow
Dear Florida, I wonder how many sons and daughters who read your letter today will make that phone call? I'll bet it will be more than you think.
Hi! It's Margo here. I'd love to know what you think of the letters -- and the answers!
Also, any additional thoughts you might have. Thanks!
I know all too well what this lady is saying in her letter. My sister who was in a 30 year relationship with her 'significant other' took him to doctor appointments, hospitals and wherever else he needed to go or wanted to go to see friends. While he was going through horrible treatments for his bladder cancer with many terrible affects and helping him however she could, his daughters were no where to be seen. At his funeral, they did show up to claim whatever he may have had left in his checking account and any possible valuables in his home (no savings here) and treat my sister as if she were a stranger and not deserving of any consideration. My sister has since been able to move on (painfully) but the two nasty witches, his daughters I put a curse on them for how they treated my sister and hope they never find peace in their lives and burn in hell as soon as possible.
Not all families are like that!
Deming NM's Comment
No not all families, but everybody has heard about the hellish, do-nothing relatives that show up to strip the corpse, so I'm afraid it's more common than not. The corpse-robbers can't take away the love the elder couple shared.
Mickey 's Comment
It’s also sad but true that some grown children have very bad memories and bitterness toward their father or mother who was rarely there, drinking, abusive, and self centered when they should have acted like a father in their younger years, but then expect to be treated like a father in their older years. Truly loving dads during their prime usually experience that love being returned by adult children when they’re old. Repentance and forgiveness is also very special in adult parent/child relationships when it can happen.
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Our Reader to Reader Question of the Week:
Dear Readers, , My x-girlfriend who lived with my son and I for 16 years died of cancer. Prior before we knew she had cancer-she moved out because of an addiction problem. We did stay very close before she died. Her x-husband an attorney took over her finances and the burial arrangements. I being financially set was okay with that, whatever they needed I provided. What really hurt my son and I the most was the obituary - we were not mentioned at all. Our friends (mine and hers) were appalled. I was embarrassed and upset for not just me, but for my son-who loved her also. I never been so upset. Her x-husband put his wife and kids and their grandchildren in the obituary, who my girlfriend barely knew. They live an hour away from us. I know its silly to be mad over a little section of the newspaper, but it still hurts. Will time let this devastating loss of her and this article ever go away? I am so angry at this whole situation, its not like we can go and rewrite an obituary notice.