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wrapped up in grief and in estate issues, complicated


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hi, i've not been here for a while. my beloved father passed away on march 3 of this year and it was an exceedingly painful intense grieving time. now i am still grieving but it is more gentle grieving and i am able to contain it within my daily life. I guess that's a good thing.

But now I'm getting involved in estate issues and this is primarily what this email is about, so for those who don't want to read this, i wanted to let you know!

It's long and complicated as these things tend to be, so I won't chew anyone's ear off, but there is disagreement between my brother and I about how to take care of what my father has left to us. And my mother, who is divorced from my father, is useless. I mean useless. Everything will be divided equally, that's not the problem, it's questions about whether to sell or rent or have my brother buy me out of dad's house....

i don't know what i'm saying. i guesss i'm just wondering how many of you have had serious family squabbles while dealing with an estate. I honestly feel that i WILL NEVER recover from these squabbles, and that not only have i lost my father, that I'm nearly about to decide to lose my brother, with whom i dont' have much of a relationship anyway, and my mother, with whom I've had a very rocky relationship. I could tell you stories! It's all about her all the time, etc. etc.

Anyway, maybe I'm just ANGRY and this will pass. But I fear not. I fear I"ll never recover from the total lack of support and instigation that I've had to face from the.

Words of wisdom, maybe?

thanks soooooooooo very much,


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Hire an attorney. Leave the headache to your esquire. Splitting up "assets" should not be emotional, splitting up memories is. Remember that you and your brother BOTH share memories, different ones that are attached to different things and some that are the same. Obviously, everything cannot be replicated to divide exactly in half, but there are ways to split a multitude of things in a fair manner.

Golf clubs to the son who played golf with him, fishing rods to the daughter he taught to flyfish, etc. Some things are worth more than their monetary value, list out the big things - not just price tag, but memory wise.

The law sees "equal" as the value, work on what is important to you and then work on dividing the pricetags.

...and before deciding that you'd like to keep the house, make sure you can afford it. I don't think I could rent out a house I felt an attachment to, I would have to sell it to someone to make over in their own way rather then risk renters trashing it.

Try counseling before deciding on drugs. Work through the "issues" or they won't go away.

Good luck,


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you are right about the drugs... I am not that way inclined but the emotions are so unbearable sometimes.. i try to sleep and when i wake up i feel better... but then the anxiety hits me again! i know it will pass ...

you see, it's really all about my dad's house.. well it is our family house, i was born and raised there. A while ago, my brother suggested that he just move in and pay the bills, taxes, etc. and i would own 1/2 a house and be able to visit anytime (he's in NY)and I said GREAT!! as it warmed my heart to think of him living in my dad's house and keeping it in the family.

but then a few days later the facts of money set in and I asked some friends and they said well he's gotta buy you out or pay you rent. That that was standard... So I figured that IF he moved into my dad's house, he'd never leave. and there's no investment there for me if it's in a house i can never sell!!

So i went to him and said, great that you want to move in, but we should talk about co-ownership and we'll probably need you to buy us out.

Now he wants to sell the house and it's breaking my heart! I almost feel like buying it from him just to hold on to it!

Maybe it's all too soon to do anything.. yet my brother, who i guess has a different style of grieving, wants to MOVE ON and not let things linger... I'm trying to respect him .. but isn't there a reason why the law gives you 9 months after date of death to settle an estate?????

what to do....


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I'm going to go out a limb here and I know and fully expect to get "raked over coals" for this.

Do you really want to risk loss of any more relationships with your family? Is there anything so valuable in a monetary sense that outweighs your emotional ties and would make the risk of losing your brother worth while? If your father wanted everything divided evenly and you both agree to that...does it really matter "how" it gets divided...selling, renting or buying out? When the smoke clears and your "half" is gone; your brother will still be there and I personally think that those wounds you have can be healed. Just my opinion and I'll be the first to admit that I have NEVER had to manage this kind of task, but I'd hate to see you look back with regrets. Spend your energy healing from the loss of your father and try to find some peace with yourself.

I'm ducking and taking cover now....

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Hi Beth,

No need to take cover!! : ) Your point is well taken!!!!!! The sad thing is I don't really have much value for either my brother or my mother, now you can rake me over the coals!!!! The emotional ties have worn THIN after years of "what's the point of this relationship?" kind of stuff. It's complicated and sad, and to top it off, my brother and I simply do not communicate (I try, he cuts me off. I'm sure he'll tell you a different story!!!)

I just kind of REALLY want my brother to buy me out reather than sell the house; that's my emotional need and honestly he's a FOOL if he dosen't as he'll never get a house so cheaply! But that's me and my real estate sense....

I really WOULD LIKE TO SPEND MY ENERGY healing from the loss of my dad, but my brother is pushing this estate beucase he wants to MOVE FORWARD and NOT LET THINGS LINGER.. to me moving TOO soon (2 months 2 weeks) is just too hard for me and make me have the shakes! Not kidding!

So thank you. You are sooooooooo right. I'm was at the point of giving them both a kick before this estate issue came up and now i just think I'm done with them. But hopefully I'll change my mind.

Thanks very much for taking the time to write to me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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I don't have any good advice or suggestions for you but I do want you to know that I am so sorry you are dealing with all this. I just wanted to let you know that I am sending good thoughts and moral support your way. These sound like some really hard decisions you and your brother are having to make. I hope you can "meet in the middle" and find solutions that are good and fair for both of you!

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