DEAR ABBY: Our son has not spoken to us in four years. He is our only child, and we live in the same city. We had a misunderstanding over a petty incident, and he has ignored us ever since. He is married and has a teen-aged son.
We are not rich, but we do have some assets that have appreciated over the years. Our son and his family are our only heirs. We are considering rewriting our wills and leaving our son out of it. As for our grandson, we hardly know him because we haven't seen him in four years.
We would appreciate any advice you can give us. We trust your judgment. -- WITHHOLD OUR NAME, PLEASE
DEAR WITHHOLD: Either write to your son or call him and tell him you want to talk to him about your will -- that will probably bring him to your door in a hurry. If and when he shows up, try to settle your differences peacefully, so you can be a family again.
I hope he agrees to bury the hatchet, but if for some reason he is not willing, you would be justified in writing him off.
Please don't punish your grandson. He's the innocent victim of his father's anger. Give him a chance to establish some kind of rapport with you, and if he is a decent, caring young man, remember him generously in your will.
Otherwise, talk with your attorney about leaving everything to your favorite charities. And don't forget your local animal shelter. Animals want nothing from you but love.