Ex-ing the family

Losing the family

When I made the decision to ‘go it alone’ many years ago, one of the saddest things about doing so was knowing I would also be losing many of my husband’s family who’d become really good friends over the years.

Needless to say, it wasn’t a decision taken lightly.

They were such good people and I knew that I was letting them down. I also knew that blood is thicker than water …

It was difficult and to their credit, they were always lovely to me. Their personal thoughts on our demise were kept to themselves.

That was about sixteen years ago.

I’ve never been totally sure what you call ex-sister-in-laws or ex-nieces and ex-nephews. I was so much part of their lives as babies, toddlers and then children and then suddenly, I wasn’t. How do you explain that to kids – is it necessary to divorce them as well?

Tonight I’ve been invited to a ‘meet the new baby’ of one of my nieces. When I queried the awkwardness of the situation, my ex-sister-in-law told me that my ex had always been very clear that I wasn’t to be excluded from family events. That I should still be invited … and furthermore, the family really want me there.

This is incredibly heart-warming. I never wanted to lose the family (except perhaps my mother-in-law!) and it’s lovely to feel that I am still considered part of the family.

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