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"CLASSIC" ANN LANDERS Editor's Note: Hundreds of Ann Landers' loyal readers have requested that newspapers continue to publish her columns. These letters originally appeared in 1999. Dear Ann Landers: My "significant other" (I'll call her Jasmine), after shacking up for …Read more. "CLASSIC" ANN LANDERS Editor's Note: Hundreds of Ann Landers' loyal readers have requested that newspapers continue to publish her columns. These letters originally appeared in 1999. Dear Ann Landers: I am a 15-year-old sophomore girl. I make decent grades and am a …Read more. "CLASSIC" ANN LANDERS Editor's Note: Hundreds of Ann Landers' loyal readers have requested that newspapers continue to publish her columns. These letters originally appeared in 1999. Dear Ann Landers: You recently printed a letter from parents whom you termed "enablers" …Read more. "CLASSIC" ANN LANDERS Editor's Note: Hundreds of Ann Landers' loyal readers have requested that newspapers continue to publish her columns. These letters originally appeared in 1999. Dear Ann Landers: You once printed an essay about how to raise your children to be …Read more.
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Editor's Note: Hundreds of Ann Landers' loyal readers have requested that newspapers continue to publish her columns. These letters originally appeared in 1999.

Dear Ann Landers: Ten years ago, I was diagnosed with kidney disease. My mother told me at the time that both my sister and my brother wanted to donate a kidney so that I might live. As the months of dialysis wore on, I decided to accept their generous offer. When I expressed my gratitude, they both told me they had no idea where I had gotten such an idea. It was then obvious that my mother had invented the story. My sister subsequently wrote me a letter saying my life was not that important to her. I had always been close to my sister. That letter destroyed the love I felt for her. I then cut off all communication. Two years later, I had a kidney transplant thanks to an anonymous donor.

I recently moved back to the area where I grew up. When I visited my mother, my sister showed up. There was zero conversation between us. I tried to forgive her and be friendly, but it was impossible. I then went for counseling, but that didn't help. Is it OK if I do not forgive her? I have searched my heart and believe I am justified. I need your opinion. — Still Hurting Up North

Dear Still Hurting: No, it is NOT OK. Forgive your sister — not for her sake, but for yours. When you treat her in a warm and loving way, with no mention of the past, she will remember that she made no effort to help you when your life was in danger — and that will be punishment enough.

Dear Ann Landers: My niece, "Eva," recently graduated from high school and sent out engraved invitations to her graduation party.

She called me to say she ran out of invitations, but hoped I would come to the party anyway. I said, "Of course, I'll be there."

A few days ago, my boss told me he had received one of those rare engraved invitations. Eva barely knows my boss. Yesterday, I learned she also sent engraved invitations to her doctor and two friends of mine who are casual acquaintances. It became obvious that the people she invited have one thing in common: money. I'm disgusted and have decided not to attend the party. Am I right to be angry? — Boiling in Fresno

Dear Boiling: I say go to the party. If you don't, Eva will not care, but why miss out on what could be a very good time? You now know about her value $y$tem. Unless she changes her course, she's going to have a lonely life. Poor thing.

Is alcohol ruining your life or the life of a loved one? "Alcoholism: How To Recognize It, How To Deal With It, How To Conquer It" can turn things around. Send a self-addressed, long, business-sized envelope and a check or money order for $3.75 (this includes postage and handling) to: Alcohol, c/o Ann Landers, c/o Creators Syndicate, 737 3rd Street, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254. To find out more about Ann Landers and read her past columns, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at




10 Comments | Post Comment
While it's pointless to address the original LW1, this situation still comes up, so I'll address the people currently in that situation: you should be asking your sister's forgiveness in this misunderstanding. You misunderstood that you have absolutely no rights or claim on your sister's body. She does not exist to provide back up organs to you simply because you have come down with a disease. While the issue is clouded by mother's wishful thinking or manipulation, it is the LW who is in the wrong here.

Yes, if the siblings choose without pressure to explore living organ donation, they should be commended. But no one should be criticized for not wanting to risk their own life in this manner. It's not as if this is a favor that can be repaid later should the remaining kidney fail. It's not as if the recipeient can replace the donor and raise their children (or have them), or somehow make it up to them if the procedure goes wrong. It's a risk not everyone is willing or able to take and it takes an enormous amount of self-centeredness to believe it does.

It is reasonable to ask a sibling to help out when you are sick, bringing meals, taking you to appointments, maybe helping with fundraisers. Expecting their organs is beyond the pale and you do not have the rights to your sibling's body just because yours failed.
Comment: #1
Posted by: ALM
Sun Feb 12, 2012 8:31 AM
No one has the right to expect a body part from someone else.The surgery is serious,danerous and requires time off work for recovery. In addition if the sibling later has health issues there are few options. yOUR MOTHER IS THE ONE WHO NEEDS TO APOLOGIZE TO YOU AND YOUR SISTER. The world doesn't revolve around you and the media plays a huge role in expectations about transplants.It doesn't publicize the poor outcomesa or the ramifications of a lifetime of rejection drugs.
Comment: #2
Posted by: retired
Sun Feb 12, 2012 11:54 AM
Excuse me?
Did you two miss the part where her sister WROTE LW A LETTER stating that her (LW's) life was "not important" to her? If someone flat out says, "I don't care if you live or die" - they get the same consideration from me. Screw Sis.
LW never said she EXPECTED it. She said that getting the letter destroyed her love for her sister, not the refusal to give the organ. There's no mention of being mad at her brother - who also didn't give her the kidney.
Comment: #3
Posted by: JMM
Sun Feb 12, 2012 12:43 PM
Donating a kidney is much more dangerous for the donor that the recipient. It is an extremely invasive surgery that requires a long recovery and the patient can die from blood loss or complications. The mother may have spoken to the siblings and suggested they donate and they may have said something noncommital that the mother ran with. I also would like to hear the exact words the sister wrote. Did she actually say, "my life was not that important to her" or did she interpret her refusal as such? And why is the sister in the wrong with no mention of the brother?

I think she expected them to freely and gladly donate to her. Maybe she felt close to her sister and her sister didn't feel the same way. Maybe she DEMANDED a kidney after the initial surprise to her sister wore off. Who knows? I just know that, when in such an emotional situation, it is easy to blame others for her problems. In no way is her kidney disease the responsibility of the brother and sister. If the roles were reversed, would she donate? (She would probably say yes, just because she is the one who is sick, but what if she was healthy?)
Comment: #4
Posted by: Julie
Sun Feb 12, 2012 2:07 PM
whats actually does this mean to when some one says this but not directly to you but throwing it out to you? "one day, some one will walk in your life an make you realize why it didnt work with others! this an insulte or a nice comment??
Comment: #5
Posted by: heart
Mon Feb 13, 2012 8:55 AM

I think LW's issue was the nasty letter from the sister stating LW's life just wasn't important to her. That's just a nasty kick when a person is down, and I'd cut off contact with someone who felt such a gratuitous need to be hurtful too.
Comment: #6
Posted by: farrar sanchez
Tue Feb 14, 2012 3:38 PM
I dunno; I'm dubious about the exact contents of that letter. If someone wrote me a hurtful letter and I were griping about it and wanted to get sympathy for it, I would take care to provide verbatim excerpts surrounded by quotation marks. The letter is the crux of LW's issue with her sister and she summarizes it in one sentence. Did the sister SAY: “Your life is not that important to me”? Or did she say something more like, “Look, I've weighed the options and the risks, and frankly, though I hate to admit it, I just can't see my way clear to putting myself through all that and taking on so much pain and peril”? Which LW then put her own little spin upon?

I think it is extremely possible that LW gets her “interpretation” skills from her mother.
Comment: #7
Posted by: Khlovia
Wed Feb 15, 2012 3:16 AM
No way of knowing, of course. People whose letters are rerun here ought to be required by law to post updates BTL.
Comment: #8
Posted by: Khlovia
Wed Feb 15, 2012 3:20 AM
The MOTHER told this person told her that her siblings would
donate a is NOT her fault to assume that she would be receiving said
organ..The letter was a cruel wake-up call to the feelings her sister may have had since childhood
She should cut all ties with this vindictive woman and stay in therapy.
Comment: #9
Posted by: Joy
Wed Feb 15, 2012 10:08 AM
Ann Landers pretends that health care is for free. Her writers mysteriously have zero problems paying for healthcare, taking time off from work for healthcare. I, like 100 million other Americans, am underinsured. I pay $700 a month for my under-insurance policy and I have not seen a doctor in years because I have no extra money to do so. But when you read Ann Landers she constantly recommends "ask a doctor", "have a kidney screening", "have a heart check"...I guess she has a juicy insurance policy and wants to brag about it.
As long as newspapers print such out-of-touch "advice", which is really brainwashing from the hospitals that advertise so much in newspapers, no one will read the newspaper.

Ann is ridiculously creative, really, finding "problems to solve" having to do with healthcare that never mention medical bankruptcy, $90 pediatrician visits, underinsurance and Single Payer Health Insurance.
Comment: #10
Posted by: Delta
Thu Mar 1, 2012 5:51 AM
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