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Sister Reimagines Her Past As A 'magical' Time
DEAR ABBY: My sister's husband died by suicide several years ago while they were in the middle of a divorce. They'd had a volatile relationship. Both she and her husband treated people very badly. They were bullies, lording it over other people and putting them down.
Her husband left an unkind suicide letter blaming her. But now she talks about him and their relationship as if it's an amazing love story. She's now claiming the suicide note was a love letter to her! Incidents in which she behaved badly have morphed into stories in which she was kind and benevolent. Although she complained about our parents and her childhood for many years, she now claims it was magical. (It wasn't perfect, but it wasn't magical.)
When she says these things, I cringe inwardly and remain silent. I know she was shocked by her husband's suicide, and I don't want to make the situation worse or push her over the edge. She sees a therapist, but I'm pretty sure she isn't giving her therapist the true story. What she tells me the therapist says doesn't sound real.
I love my sister even though she has treated me badly many times. I'm concerned that if I confront her with the truth, she will fall apart or rage at me. But I am uncomfortable listening to her revision of history and don't know how to respond. Any advice? -- FUZZY TRUTH
DEAR TRUTH: Your sister has rewritten history because the truth is too hard for her to face. To confront her with the truth would be a waste of time because she will only retreat back into denial. If listening to her tall tales is too much for you, either see and talk to her less often or change the subject.