Subject: “Do you have any brothers or sisters”?
My older sister, my only sibling killed herself 2 years and change ago. I’m an adult, just turned 40 and I’m single and childless. Since my sister’s death I have come to accept that my best days are behind me and all I have left is watching my parents age. Our tiny family is dying. I find myself fantasizing leaving the world in the same way, but not until my parents go. I am alone and I struggle with reaching out. I used to love to meet new people. Now I’m very distant and closed off to letting anyone ask me questions about my life. My default is to steer the conversation away from me and just ask them more about themselves. I don’t know how to have a light conversation when people ask me about children, relationships, siblings…the normal “get to know you ” questions. “No, I don’t have children.” “Why not?” “Because I have failed to find someone to share that experience with”. “Do you have any brothers or sisters?” “No, I mean, yes…well I used to…she killed herself a couple years ago.” Great lighthearted first conversation huh? I do my best to avoid fun chats like this. How do I answer these questions? I can’t figure it out in my brain and I can’t find any advice… If any of you found yourselves suddenly an only child and you don’t know how to explain this, you’re not alone.