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Funeral Dilemma - Attend or Not Attend?

Dear Dr. Dave and Dr. Dee,

My ex-husband's mother is in a near death state, and I was quite close to her when we were married. Even after our divorce, we always corresponded.

We were married 16 years, and my "ex" took our divorce very hard as I was the one who wanted it. He is still friends with my brother who tells me my "ex" is very bitter and is not the same person he once was, because according to my ex, I "ruined his life." Section targeting My dilemma is this, since it's inevitable that my ex-mother-in-law will die, should I attend the funeral? As I live Florida and she in New York State, it would involve considerable preparations and expense to go.

I still have sincere, caring feelings for my ex, wish him no ill will, and also know how hard this will be for him, and it hurts me to think I cannot offer my sympathies in any way. I'm sure that if I even sent him a sympathy card, it would end up in the trash. Signed,

Any Suggestions?

Dear Any Suggestions,

A funeral provides an opportunity for family and friends to share in the loss and express their love and respect for the deceased. A funeral is really more for the emotional healing of the surviving family members. Your ex-husband will already be in grief and agony over the death of his mother, and your presence would only increase his torment. Stay home. Given your ex-husband's grudge against you, it would be best to not attend the funeral, but send a condolence card even if you think it will get tossed out.

Because your brother is friends with your ex, it would be acceptable for your brother to attend the funeral as a representative for his side of the family (thus on your behalf).