letter from dead parent

(73 Posts)
cuddlemonkey2016 Wed 13-Apr-16 06:20:35

My mother passed away a few weeks ago and we didn't speak for the last few years of her life.

however I have been informed that she has left me a letter, and I am guessing from the tone of my sibling it's not going to be massively complimentary (I have a feeling he has actually read it!)

Do I read the letter or just bin it? I know it's not going to be an apology but probably a final hurrah and what a bad person I am etc.

frazmum Wed 13-Apr-16 06:27:58

Can you get someone you trust to read it for you?

Quatrefoil Wed 13-Apr-16 06:30:16

That's a tough one. I think I would probably read it out of pure curiosity. But be very prepared for it to contain unpleasantness and ready to put it straight in the bin. It's not as if you are going to be surprised by the contents.

On the other hand, if you think you might find it too upsetting, don't bother. You and your mother had obviously already said everything that you needed to say and it's all water under the bridge now.

Your sibling sounds none too pleasant either - do you really think he read it? Shocking behaviour.

acasualobserver Wed 13-Apr-16 06:36:41

Bin it. In this case, ignorance is bliss.

Aridane Wed 13-Apr-16 06:36:44

Unless you can put it out of your mind forever, I think you need to read it - failing which to have passed to a trusted friend so you can look at it some time in the future, should you choose to do so

curren Wed 13-Apr-16 06:36:47

My grandad wrote me such a letter.

He was a drinker and I stopped speaking to him when he called me a whore (amongst other things) while I was pregnant. Bizarrely I was had been married two years, my (male cousin) had got someone pregnant following a one night stand and was a hero for saying he would take responsibility for the baby confused and I was the whore.

This was something that happened at the end of a couple of years of abuse from him.

A few years later mum told me she had told him I wouldn't speak to him until he at least apologised and his words were 'she should know I am sorry'.

I didn't read the letter. Wasn't even slightly interested. It wasn't going to be an apology. I have never regretted it.

If you really want to know, get someone else to read it first. But if they tell you you don't want to read it. You will always wonder.

It really depends on the type of person you are and how you feel about your mum. I was done with my grandad. I had got to the point where I didn't hate him, I wasn't sad we didn't speak. I wasn't happy he had died. I felt nothing for him. He words didn't mean anything either way.

Mistigri Wed 13-Apr-16 06:50:01

Leaving an unpleasant letter to be read after your death is quite an extreme thing to do and suggests that your mum might have had some mental health issues. I would be inclined not to read it personally, unless you feel that reading it would have some positive impact for you (for eg, might reinforce your belief that having cut contact was the right decision).

Horrible decision to have to make sad

MonkeyPJs Wed 13-Apr-16 06:51:30

I think you should get someone else to read it first. That way you won't always wonder if it had been a last minute change of heart or something.

And if it is awful, you will never look back on having gone NC with regret

Cathun Wed 13-Apr-16 07:06:32

You can decide not to decide yet. If you're not sure either way put it away until you are sure of what to do. Whether you got on well with your mum or not you have still suffered a loss and so now might not be the right time to make any kind of forever decision. Reading it now might be too painful but throwing it away takes the decision away from your future self that might want to find out.

I'm sorry for your loss. Be kind to yourself.

EponasWildDaughter Wed 13-Apr-16 07:22:47

Get someone else to read it first, yes. Someone you trust will read it properly, IYSWIM. Someone who will see any veiled digs at you for what they are.

You don't want nasty or passive aggressive stuff from a letter like that floating round in your head for ever! Just no need.

BillSykesDog Wed 13-Apr-16 07:28:43

Another for get someone else to read it and tell you whether or not to bother. You'll always wonder otherwise.

WhoTheFuckIsSimon Wed 13-Apr-16 07:33:48

I haven't spoken to my elderly mother for over a year. Leaving a nasty letter to me is exactly the sort of thing she would do.

But me being me would probably read it just incase there was a tiny, tiny chance she was saying how sorry she was. But it's unlikely it would be an apology and then I would just be upset by the nastiness......but I suppose you could see it as vindication for your decision to be NC? I think I would have to read it because otherwise I would always wonder what was said.

redshoeblueshoe Wed 13-Apr-16 07:36:10

Do you get on with your sibling ? If you do just ask them, if they say its awful burn it. brew

Hissy Wed 13-Apr-16 07:41:52

Burn it. Or get your sibling to do so.

No good will come if it. She has to exploit even her own death to make you feel shit? Fuck that!

GabiSolis Wed 13-Apr-16 07:45:36

I would read it. I couldn't live with not knowing what it said. That would harm me more than the contents I think.

spanky2 Wed 13-Apr-16 07:47:47

Bin it. If it was so important you'd have got it when she was alive.

AttilaTheMeerkat Wed 13-Apr-16 07:50:47

Presumably your sibling still has this letter, what sort of a relationship if any did he have with mother?.

I would personally shred the letter, it does not deserve to have any power over you at all. You seem to have a good idea of what its going to say anyway.

VertigoNun Wed 13-Apr-16 07:55:13

Burn it.

StayAChild Wed 13-Apr-16 07:57:31

I would bin it. If you hadn't spoken for the last few years I would think that means you had come to terms with having no contact. Re-opening old wounds by reading one-sided contact would take another few years to come to terms with. Even if it was an apology, it's too late.

DinosaursRoar Wed 13-Apr-16 08:00:21

Tell your sibling you have no interest in reading it. If he wants to give it to you so that he's done his 'job' and kept his agreement with your Mum then fine, but you won't be reading it.

LittleLionMansMummy Wed 13-Apr-16 08:01:11

It sounds like she knew exactly what she was doing - using her death to ensure she has the last word in full knowledge you'd have no right to reply, but would feel obliged to read it just in case it's conciliatory. What a terrible thing to do, leaving such ill feeling in your wake. I'd ask someone else you trust to read it and tell them that if the tone and content isn't conciliatory you don't want to know. Then burn it and never look back.

ivykaty44 Wed 13-Apr-16 08:01:59

Put it away in another sealed envelop of your own choosing.

Then in a few weeks, months or years burn the letters and both the envelops as well if you so choose, and let go and be freed.

No need to rush into s choice as to wether you want to read the letter and it may not be a choice you want to make now

Just remember, there are no rules

chicaguapa Wed 13-Apr-16 08:08:24

As PP have said, I'd ask a friend to read it and summarise anything that you need to hear. I wouldn't read it yourself at all. I wouldn't let your mum have the last word tbh, especially if it's unpleasant. If you've not spoken to her for a few years you'll have been able to compartmentalise her anyway so I'd do the same with the letter.

var123 Wed 13-Apr-16 08:09:43

I'd read it. If its bad, I'd feel vindicated in the no contact decision I took and know that your mother was what she was through and through.

If its conciliatory, I'd feel sad that it wasn't said to my face, with a chance to but consoled.

BastardGoDarkly Wed 13-Apr-16 08:11:58

Yes, get the letter, tuck it away until you decide.

How bitter do you have to be to leave your child a scathing letter to remember you by?

I'm sorry op flowers

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