You used to be my friend

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This copy is for your personal non-commercial use only. Dear Readers: Family ties can be a support system, or a cause for conflict and pain.

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Q: My brother married my close friend 17 years ago. My new sister-in-law and I had gone to summer camp together and bonded as preteens. My brother and my friend are a loving couple with two sons. I found I had to be careful not to ever make even a joking comment about the kids rambunctious but also great fun. Every statement had to be praise. A: Being an in-law is a category that grows in importance over time. As the children grow up and their parents look for s of their inherited traits, your growing up in the same environment as her husband are a window into their reactions, natural skills, attitudes, moods and far more.

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No friend can fill that role. Consider your expanding role over time, and be more positive about your position. Her only request is asking for loyalty when discussing her children. Early in our marriage my wife commented that even though I thought I had a close relationship with my younger brother, we spent little time together, and rarely went out together as two couples. Our mother had even asked me if it was my brother or his wife who caused this disconnect. I still dread any large family get- togethers. On my best days I consider him only as someone I used to know.

The thought of him still causes major anxiety! Unfortunately, his family experienced a recent terrible tragedy. Tragedy usurps past silences.


A note of sincere condolences is a start. Copyright owned or d by Toronto Star Newspapers Limited. All rights reserved. To order copies of Toronto Star articles, please go to: www. By Ellie Advice Columnist Tue. Stuck as Family. No Response Needed.

Every Time My Friend Looks Away.. I Change his World

Ellie Tesher is an advice columnist for the Star and based in Toronto. Send your relationship questions via : ellie thestar. Report an error.

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You used to be my friend

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Friendship and mental health