Ask Amy: Should I leave my distant son out of my will?

Ask Amy: Should I leave my distant son out of my will?

Ask Amy: Should I leave my distant son out of my will?

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dear Amy: I have two daughters and a son. All are adults. I am divorced from their father and am still single after 17 years since the divorce.

My girls both stay in my life – especially the youngest. “Chloe” is always there for me.

‘Nancy’, the eldest, is like a cat to me – she only makes time and effort for me when it’s on her terms and she’s in the right mood, which doesn’t happen often.

My son, ‘Bradley’, however, avoids me completely. He never picks up his phone when I call. He doesn’t respond to contact from me, his father or his older sister, but he does interact with Chloe from time to time.

Now that I’m over 60 and battling cancer, I’m feeling my mortality and starting to think about things like getting a will.

I’m a person of simple means so there won’t be a lot of money left, but there will be a few thousand dollars in a 401(k) account and some life insurance money.

My dilemma is: should I leave Bradley out of the will completely?

It seems like the sad, sobering thing to do, but it would be based on how he treated me.

Since Nancy is lukewarm to me, should I leave a third of her and then two thirds to Chloe, who has been the most loving and caring child?

I suspect that if I do an even three-way split, the girls, especially Chloe, will be outraged that their “deadbeat brother” got anything at all.

conflicting: The daughter closest to you, “Chloe”, has already reaped the consequences and rewards of her behavior: she has a fun, positive and active relationship with her mother. Your son, “Bradley,” has been denied that by his own choices.

Estate planning can be a complicated business as it inspires some people to essentially reward or punish after death when neither you nor them can do anything else.

Worrying about what others might think after you die should be a non-starter.

There is no “correct” answer to this question, but in my opinion you should leave an equal amount to all three children that have come into the world, equally loved by you.

In addition to money, you can leave special material items to your favorite daughter — or give them to her while you’re still around to enjoy the relationship.

You can also inform her in advance of your intentions and your reasoning.

Talk about it, but come what may – you should make the choice that feels best, kindest and most ethical to you.

dear Amy: My long-term boyfriend decided to ghost me a few months after his wife had a “routine heart procedure” and tragically never woke up.

He was devastated, as was everyone who knew her. I know he has alcohol and drug problems.

The last thing he told me was that he was chasing a widow in town who “has a lot of money” and that he was done with me.

I asked, “So this is the end of our friendship?” He never responded.

Many years ago he sent me a work of art that he had made of wood. Many hours of work went into this.

I don’t want it in my house anymore. I thought about donating it to Goodwill here, but it’s a bit weird and I doubt they would want to.

I thought to just email it back to him with no explanation, but is that cruel? I thought to just burn it in my fireplace, but that seems hateful.

I’m actually not mad at him, but I don’t want this piece, and I’ve never really liked this weird thing.

burned: You could try reaching out to this man – again – to see if he would like to get this piece back to him. Keep your tone very neutral and tell him you are “cutting back”.

Depending on his response, Goodwill would definitely want this item. I hope you choose to donate it.

As someone who scours flea markets, thrift stores and Goodwill for homemade treasures, this piece actually sounds right up my alley.

dear Amy: I sniffed my coffee when I read your (excellent) response to “happy teetotaler”, the young woman who felt pressured to drink when she went out.

My favorite of your spicy excuses: “I need to stay sober so I don’t slip into your vomit later.”

Cleaning: I like to deliver some snap.

©2022 by Amy Dickinson, distributed by Tribune Content Agency