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Being a “good” (adult) sibling/aunt/uncle

(9 Posts)
Dozer Sat 28-Oct-17 08:18:25

I have been reflecting on what actions/feelings constitute being a “good” (or “good enough”) sibling or aunt, and what, if anything, it’s reasonable to want from other people.

I have a number of DNs I see only a few times a year, due to distance, and send cards/gifts for birthdays and christmas, and sometimes feel guilty for not doing more or having stronger feelings about them.

As a DC I had lots of uncles and aunts who were similarly living far away, and had a general feeling of kindness and benevolence from them, which was nice.

A sibling who is single and had some bad things happen in the last few years (serious illness - now OK, death of a bf) but doing very well in their career seems to have detached from the family, especially any meet ups involving DC, and is now seriously considering emigrating. No one in the family will be able to afford to visit them in the location they’re keen on: they will be able to afford to come back for occasional visits though. I am sad because this will mean seeing them even less, and one of my DC will also be upset (spent a lot of time with them prior to the changes and loves them and wants to see them more). But I feel I shouldn’t express this at all and should be wholly positive, when (selfishly) I don’t feel it!

Dozer Sat 28-Oct-17 08:19:53

The family member didn’t/doesn’t want DC themselvesz

flyingpigsinclover Sat 28-Oct-17 08:24:29

It's their life, it's natural for you to be sad of course flowers

WhatwouldAryado Sat 28-Oct-17 08:26:21

It really is for them to pursue a life for themselves.

MysweetAudrina Sat 28-Oct-17 08:38:06

I have 1 brother and 1 sister. My brother emigrated to Australia 10 years ago and my sister to USA last year. I'm happy for both of them even though my kids and I miss out on their company them pursuing their dreams and ambitious is much more important than my need to have them around for me and my children. You need to stop thinking of yourself and be happy and supportive for them. As long as family are healthy and getting on with their life i feel good for them. I can't afford to visit my brother and have never been to see him but hopefully I will someday.

Dozer Sat 28-Oct-17 09:32:16

Yes, I get that it’s their life, but it’s still sad.

BoneyBackJefferson Sat 28-Oct-17 09:34:43

Its sad for you, but its an exciting time for them.

It would be a shame to put a negative spin on it with guilt tripping.

ForalltheSaints Sat 28-Oct-17 09:47:18

I have a sister who moved abroad, an aunt and my godmother likewise. Technology enables me to see them via Skype (other video calling is available(!)) and things like birthdays and Christmas are remembered, even if just by a card and a call.

For each of them it has been a positive thing to move, and I am happy for them.

Dozer Sat 28-Oct-17 11:20:29

Am obviously not guilt tripping them, am on MN and being supportive in RL.

A friend’s sibling has emigrated and friend, though similarly supportive to her sibling, is privately upset for herself.

Another friend emigrated ten years ago and has fallen out with her siblings (UK based) about the care of their elderly father with dementia.

Hard things to handle.

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