I know I am not much of an uncle.......(HELP)

There are a lot of things in my relationship with my brother that I think effected my relationship. After he got married in Los Vegas I was never invited to the reception that he held in our home state. When he had a daughter I was never invited to the baptism, christening, nothing. Not even for his son that was born 9 years later. He (and they) never send me a Christmas card, birthday card or anything of the sort. I never had an address for him and if I was to send him something it would have to be sent to my parents house. I would call him every year to wish him a happy birthday, he never has done that for me.

So - I never really took an interest (publicly) of his daughter or son nor did I ever do anything for their birthdays or Christmas. The last time he went to prison I did not write him - not once. The time before I wrote him once, it took him 2 months to write back. The next time I wrote him (4 pages) I got a half page response. I have not moved in 14 years and him and my parents know my address and phone number.

Lately I have been feeling guilty for my treatment of my niece and nephew and they both have birthdays coming up (next two months) Money is REAL tight I barely make rent and my car payments and more then three times a week make toast or a pkg of crackers my dinner.

So my question is, do I send them something or does that make me seem like I am trying to buy my way into their lives? IF I do send them a gift or gift card, is $25 each to cheap? Honestly I do not care about getting right with my brother - he made his choices clear! He is a deadbeat (and divorced with no custody) as far as making support payments and lives off my parents and lives with them but does not contribute to rent or food or anything. They are BARELY getting by being elderly with sever health problems.

Any advice is welcome but do not be rude about it. Thanks.

PS: I have only seen my niece once in person and my nephew once (she was 9 he was new born) They are now going on 5 and 13.

What should I send them...does $$ matter? A gift, gift card, cash...

I feel foolish for asking but can not come to a decision that is not shaded by my relationship with him.

Updates:
Does it make me a bad person if when I call my parents that I do not ask about how he is doing while locked up or that when he's free that I do not talk to him or if they mention that he is there and would I like to talk to him I ignore their question or make up an excuse to call them back at a better time. I love him, he is my brother but not sure how to feel about his lack of inviting me even though I might not have been able to make it? Am I wrong for feeling as if I am taking it out on the

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Most Helpful Guy

  • The best way to be better with your niece and nephew is to visit them, and ask discreetly what they want, and send them the next day/week.

    You're a good brother for being so attentive and caring for your brother.

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    • That visit would be cross country and I would honestly be giving food off my plate to send them each $25 (cash, gift card, whatever) so a plane trip would be a pipe dream. I live in Dallas, they live in Maine.

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What Guys Said 2

  • You are really a wonderful person, your brother is a loser that he didn't realized your worth, as far as gift is concerned send them any thing with all love from your heart, moneys not important.

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    • Does it make me a bad person if when I call my parents that I do not ask about how he is doing while locked up or that when free that I do not talk to him or if they mention that he is there and would I like to talk to him I ignore their question or make up an excuse to call them back at a better time. I love him, he is my brother but not sure how to feel about his lack of inviting me even though I might not have been able to make it? Am I wrong for feeling as if I am taking it out on the kids?

  • Blood is not thicker than water so don't worry yourself and forget the whole thing with him and being a bad uncle

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    • No. You should not worry about it

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