'Selfish' Sister Bans Widowed Brother from Attending Family Gathering

Gillian Sisley

Is there any form of upset that warrants excluding someone from an event?

As we walk through life, we make connections and form bonds with other people. Some of these bonds will be for a season, and others will be for a lifetime. This is particularly the intention when choosing a romantic partner.

And after finding that special someone, it’s hard to imagine life without them. Unfortunately, there are cases in which a person will lose their spouse, either through accident or illness. Regardless, the trauma is significant when this happens.

These realities were highlighted in a recent online post in which a man loses the love of his life, and his sister doesn’t want him around because his grief is ‘too much’ for her.

Is there any form of upset that warrants excluding someone from a gathering?

An online post published on October 4, reported on by Taylor McCloud from Newsweek, has gone viral with 8,000 upvotes and 3,600 comments.

The author begins her post by explaining that her sister-in-law recently passed away from cancer just 8 weeks ago, which has been incredibly devastating for her brother. It has been such a traumatic experience that the brother has ‘isolated himself’ in the wake of this loss.

The author adds that in an effort to coax the widower out of the house, their parents have hosted several family events, but the brother hasn’t shown up to many of them. And when he has, he is ‘overcome with emotion’, which is very uncomfortable for the author.

She paints the picture that each time he is with family, someone will inevitably bring up her brother’s dead wife, and he will ‘sob uncontrollably’. The author feels that this is a bit excessive.

Each and every person grieves in a different way.

This past weekend, it was the author’s turn to host, but she and her husband were ‘worried’ that the same thing—meaning her brother’s public displays of emotion—would happened again. Her husband suggested that her brother should ‘sit this one out’, and so the author called her sibling and ‘apologized to him for cancelling his invite’.

As soon as her parents found out she did this, they ‘went off on her’, saying that her behavior was ‘disgraceful’ and she was being unsupportive of her brother. They also called her ‘selfish’ for having no regard for her brother’s loss. The author’s husband simply states that her parents ‘obviously don’t care about guests being uncomfortable’ watching her brother sob at every event.

What do you think? Was the author absolutely in the wrong for excluding her brother from a family gathering, simply because his grief is so uncomfortable and inconvenient to the author? Or is the discomfort of others worth nothing, and should be considered as well for whether the the brother should be invited to events?

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