My Sister-in-Law Never Said That

“There was the time she matter-of-factly mentioned, ‘If we weren’t family, we probably wouldn’t be friends.’ ” from a story by Anna Marin — Sept 17, 2019

Wow. If nothing else you could call the woman tactless, right? How about clueless? About all she would have needed to say to me. I’d just as soon not be around someone like that.

It’s not important that my attitude toward extended family probably doesn’t include an expectation we’d all be close. Not feeling uncomfortable in their presence is sufficient. OK, I like people to like me, but I don’t insist on it. I’d feel silly trying to make it happen. I’ve been accused of being self-centered, but it just feels slobberish— like a puppy and I’m an old dog.

And I’ll admit no underlying yearning to talk to my older sister every morning has ever occurred — to either of us. More like ‘hell, I need to call her; it’s been too long.’ So we’re on the other end of a spectrum from Anna Marin. My sister and I probably talk every couple weeks. My son and I don’t talk weekly either, though when we do, it can run on for an hour or more — we all like to talk.

And my email messages to close friends and family do end in “Love” or “Love you” and I mean it.

I imagine Anna Marin has close friends. I expect she thinks that’s important — and she’s right. And her husband knows enough about his sister that he takes his wife’s side. Smart man. He’ll go far.

“My sister is my sister. My sisters-in-law are my sisters-in-law. My husband is my husband. I have that straight now. And I love them all — just differently.”

Nice landing — very artfully put!

We should meet for coffee sometime.

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A practicing writer and architect, he is now squandering hours making a mess from writing.

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