Cu­ri­ous about se­crets

Albany Times Union - Sunday - - ALBANY COUNTY - ABI­GAIL VAN BUREN Dear abby

DEAR ABBY: I am a 22-year-old, sin­gle male who re­cently grad­u­ated from col­lege. I re­ceived lots of con­grat­u­la­tions in per­son and by phone, text and so­cial me­dia.

One of them came from a woman my age named “Bree.” When I re­sponded, I didn’t re­call ever hav­ing friended her but learned she’s a cousin who lives back east. Ap­par­ently, her mother and my fa­ther are sib­lings. When I asked my fa­ther about it, he got very de­fen­sive and told me who­ever it was I spoke to is a com­plete and to­tal liar. Or­di­nar­ily, I might have agreed, but his re­ac­tion tells me there’s a lot more to this.

I want to find out more. Nei­ther of my par­ents will say a word about it. When I told them I plan to travel to the East Coast and meet Bree, I was told I may not be wel­comed back if I do! This makes me won­der what hor­ri­ble thing could have hap­pened.

Be­cause my fa­ther won’t share the truth with me, I am left with only this op­tion. Pur­sue this, find part of my fam­ily I never knew ex­isted and learn some­thing, but lose the fam­ily I have and re­gret it for­ever. Any in­sight?

— Lost cousin in Cal­i­for­nia DEAR COUSIN: Fam­ily se­crets can be dev­as­tat­ing. That your fa­ther re­acted so strongly shows how threat­ened he is you might un­cover some­thing he isn’t proud of. While you may not lose your fa­ther if you delve into this, you may find that when you do, your image of him may be shat­tered. If you re­ally feel you will “re­gret it for­ever” if you do, then make sure you are pre­pared for the pos­si­ble penalty.

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