You Can’t Choose Your Relatives

 

But you can choose your friends. I think that is how the saying goes. For the past six weeks, I have been playing golf again one day a week with my friend Ronnie, who I have known for a little over a year. It is a casual friendship, which I think all should be, but life has a habit of intervening into relationships. Ronnie is a large, very masculine, 80-year-old gentleman who has never met a stranger and has the personality that everyone recognizes as an invitation for instant friendship. I have known younger men who had a well-deserved reputation as being a “babe magnet” but Ronnie is a “friend” magnet who can’t help himself from being friendly.

Ronnie has been married several times but for the past six or seven years has been living with Karen, who has also had a few marriages. Karen is a beautiful woman who was once a movie star. She never actually had a starring role but she was in major movies throughout the ’50s and ’60s. Ronnie will not be playing golf with me tomorrow because Karen is in a serious medical crisis.

I will try to help by getting permission to review her medical records and radiology images so I can explain things to both Ronnie and Karen. Getting that permission and utilizing it is a battle I have fought a few times and I dread it.

You can choose your friends, but the older I get, the more I think it is not worth the trouble. I am going to stick with the ones I have. Like Ronnie.

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  1. BDB Coolidge
    BDB
    @BDB

    You can’t pick your relatives, but you can pick your nose.  

    • #1
  2. BDB Coolidge
    BDB
    @BDB

    I hope that Karen and Ronnie are well, and that your support lifts them up.  Ronnie may have friends, but you’re the one stepping up to this particular plate.

    And maybe the joke above could come in handy. 

    • #2
  3. Southern Pessimist Member
    Southern Pessimist
    @SouthernPessimist

    That was the saying I was trying to remember. LOL.

    • #3
  4. Barry Jones Thatcher
    Barry Jones
    @BarryJones

    Southern Pessimist (View Comment):

    That was the saying I was trying to remember. LOL.

    How about “Friends are relatives you get to choose.” I have few friends but the ones I have are irreplaceable to me.

    • #4
  5. navyjag Coolidge
    navyjag
    @navyjag

    Especially if the friends are docs. Who can help when things go wrong.  Have two plus a nephew.  Always willing to help.  Not sure lawyer friends as valuable. But help when I can. 

    • #5
  6. Bob Thompson Member
    Bob Thompson
    @BobThompson

    navyjag (View Comment):

    Especially if the friends are docs. Who can help when things go wrong. Have two plus a nephew. Always willing to help. Not sure lawyer friends as valuable. But help when I can.

    Right. During the pandemic, I pretty much lost trust in anything being derived through the medical institutions which is most things now. I switched my personal primary care to a doctor offering a concierge service with no insurance accepted including Medicare. I could still use those for specialists and lab work. Friends helping out kinda gives one something similar.  As a matter of fact I set up this concierge arrangement because of the doctor’s friendship with my daughter. My family members used Frontline Doctors for the Covid.

    • #6
  7. kedavis Inactive
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    BDB (View Comment):

    You can’t pick your relatives, but you can pick your nose.

    But you (usually) can’t pick your relatives’ noses.

    • #7
  8. Southern Pessimist Member
    Southern Pessimist
    @SouthernPessimist

    Bob Thompson (View Comment):

    navyjag (View Comment):

    Especially if the friends are docs. Who can help when things go wrong. Have two plus a nephew. Always willing to help. Not sure lawyer friends as valuable. But help when I can.

    Right. During the pandemic, I pretty much lost trust in anything being derived through the medical institutions which is most things now. I switched my personal primary care to a doctor offering a concierge service with no insurance accepted including Medicare. I could still use those for specialists and lab work. Friends helping out kinda gives one something similar. As a matter of fact I set up this concierge arrangement because of the doctor’s friendship with my daughter. My family members used Frontline Doctors for the Covid.

    Until recently I never thought that building a network of medical caregiving outside of the official proscribed system would be necessary. But now I think that Rod Dreher’s Benedict Option for faith may be more necessary for medicine than it is for Christianity.

    • #8
  9. BDB Coolidge
    BDB
    @BDB

    kedavis (View Comment):

    BDB (View Comment):

    You can’t pick your relatives, but you can pick your nose.

    But you (usually) can’t pick your relatives’ noses.

    Davis, you magnificent bastard.  You’ve unlocked the final form of this:

    “You can pick your friends.  You can pick your nose.  But you can’t pick your friend’s nose.”

    Which is of course a statement about how some functions can not be composed.  bqhatevewr.

    • #9
  10. kedavis Inactive
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    BDB (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    BDB (View Comment):

    You can’t pick your relatives, but you can pick your nose.

    But you (usually) can’t pick your relatives’ noses.

    Davis, you magnificent bastard. You’ve unlocked the final form of this:

    “You can pick your friends. You can pick your nose. But you can’t pick your friend’s nose.”

    Which is of course a statement about how some functions can not be composed. bqhatevewr.

    To quote Cleopatra, I’ve got a million of ’em!

    (that’s near the end of episode 1)  (this version seems slowed down a bit, but still watchable)

     

     

     

    Proper-speed intro, much better:

    • #10
  11. carcat74 Member
    carcat74
    @carcat74

    Without reading the OP, I can relate! I’ve been saying “you can pick your friends, but can’t pick your family” for the last several months. My younger brother pulled some sneaky, underhanded, slimy, evil tricks on our (at the time 89 yrs old) father in order to get the house and land for himself, and cut me and our other 2 siblings off entirely.  Over 1700.00 later, we got it straightened out, and sent brother & wifey back to Florida empty handed. My dad had NO INSURANCE on his home from 1/21/22 to the end of last month, because my ‘brother’ tricked dad into signing a contract for deed! My blood is still boiling…….

    • #11
  12. kedavis Inactive
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    carcat74 (View Comment):

    Without reading the OP, I can relate! I’ve been saying “you can pick your friends, but can’t pick your family” for the last several months. My younger brother pulled some sneaky, underhanded, slimy, evil tricks on our (at the time 89 yrs old) father in order to get the house and land for himself, and cut me and our other 2 siblings off entirely. Over 1700.00 later, we got it straightened out, and sent brother & wifey back to Florida empty handed. My dad had NO INSURANCE on his home from 1/21/22 to the end of last month, because my ‘brother’ tricked dad into signing a contract for deed! My blood is still boiling…….

    I was just re-reading an old “switched at birth” story, maybe your real brother got switched with that jerk, and is off living somewhere else and you’ve never met him.

    • #12
  13. carcat74 Member
    carcat74
    @carcat74

    kedavis (View Comment):

    carcat74 (View Comment):

    Without reading the OP, I can relate! I’ve been saying “you can pick your friends, but can’t pick your family” for the last several months. My younger brother pulled some sneaky, underhanded, slimy, evil tricks on our (at the time 89 yrs old) father in order to get the house and land for himself, and cut me and our other 2 siblings off entirely. Over 1700.00 later, we got it straightened out, and sent brother & wifey back to Florida empty handed. My dad had NO INSURANCE on his home from 1/21/22 to the end of last month, because my ‘brother’ tricked dad into signing a contract for deed! My blood is still boiling…….

    I was just re-reading an old “switched at birth” story, maybe your real brother got switched with that jerk, and is off living somewhere else and you’ve never met him.

    Hmmmm, never thought of that…

    • #13
  14. carcat74 Member
    carcat74
    @carcat74

    My siblings and our spouses had to try to think like my ‘brother’ for months. I told mr.c and my sister it made me feel dirty. I reported him to Adult Protective Services for financial elder abuse, it was so bad. Sad thing is, my dad was defending him, and his wife. When they moved into his house for over a year during the Wuflu (computer geek, could work anywhere), without paying rent, utilities, anything, they worked on him. Told him he was the only child who loved him, his other 3 kids were just after his money, we didn’t care about him. BUT, none of us  parked 2 sons in dad’s house over the last 4 years, under the pretext of ‘taking care of Granddad’. No rent, no utilities, nothing—precious little care.

    • #14
  15. TBA Coolidge
    TBA
    @RobtGilsdorf

    carcat74 (View Comment):

    My siblings and our spouses had to try to think like my ‘brother’ for months. I told mr.c and my sister it made me feel dirty. I reported him to Adult Protective Services for financial elder abuse, it was so bad. Sad thing is, my dad was defending him, and his wife. When they moved into his house for over a year during the Wuflu (computer geek, could work anywhere), without paying rent, utilities, anything, they worked on him. Told him he was the only child who loved him, his other 3 kids were just after his money, we didn’t care about him. BUT, none of us parked 2 sons in dad’s house over the last 4 years, under the pretext of ‘taking care of Granddad’. No rent, no utilities, nothing—precious little care.

    fwiw, your brother probably doesn’t see it. 

    • #15
  16. carcat74 Member
    carcat74
    @carcat74

    TBA (View Comment):

    carcat74 (View Comment):

    My siblings and our spouses had to try to think like my ‘brother’ for months. I told mr.c and my sister it made me feel dirty. I reported him to Adult Protective Services for financial elder abuse, it was so bad. Sad thing is, my dad was defending him, and his wife. When they moved into his house for over a year during the Wuflu (computer geek, could work anywhere), without paying rent, utilities, anything, they worked on him. Told him he was the only child who loved him, his other 3 kids were just after his money, we didn’t care about him. BUT, none of us parked 2 sons in dad’s house over the last 4 years, under the pretext of ‘taking care of Granddad’. No rent, no utilities, nothing—precious little care.

    fwiw, your brother probably doesn’t see it.

    Classic narcissist, through & through. 

    • #16
  17. TBA Coolidge
    TBA
    @RobtGilsdorf

    carcat74 (View Comment):

    TBA (View Comment):

    carcat74 (View Comment):

    My siblings and our spouses had to try to think like my ‘brother’ for months. I told mr.c and my sister it made me feel dirty. I reported him to Adult Protective Services for financial elder abuse, it was so bad. Sad thing is, my dad was defending him, and his wife. When they moved into his house for over a year during the Wuflu (computer geek, could work anywhere), without paying rent, utilities, anything, they worked on him. Told him he was the only child who loved him, his other 3 kids were just after his money, we didn’t care about him. BUT, none of us parked 2 sons in dad’s house over the last 4 years, under the pretext of ‘taking care of Granddad’. No rent, no utilities, nothing—precious little care.

    fwiw, your brother probably doesn’t see it.

    Classic narcissist, through & through.

    Contemptable. 

    I mean, sure, I’m a narcissist too, but I’m Avant Garde. 

    • #17
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