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by Abigail Van Buren

Husband's Family Offers Little Sympathy After Father's Death

DEAR ABBY: My father was killed recently in a shooting. I have received text messages and phone calls from my immediate family and close friends. My mother-in-law was thoughtful enough to send me a card, and I called to thank her the day I received it.

My husband has other close relatives. None of them called me, not even my sister-in-law. They have my number, so that's not the issue. Is this the norm in the United States? I ask because I come from a different background, and I find this disheartening. -- GRIEVING IN NEVADA

DEAR GRIEVING: Please accept my deepest sympathy for the tragedy that took your father. When something so out of the ordinary happens, many people don't know what to say. While something as simple as, "I'm so sorry," or, "You are in my prayers, and my thoughts are with you," would suffice, they are so fearful they will say the wrong thing that they say nothing. Your husband's family may fall into this category. Please try to forgive them.

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