Should I go?

I just received an email that my sister (12 years older, I am 64) had a cardiac arrest on Monday and is now comatose. Due to our age difference and a dysfunctional family, we were never close. In recent years we would skype once a year. She has been married to husband #4 for a few years. I have never liked him. She has no off-springs from her marriages. My brother (ten years older than me) is there with her and hubby. She is in the USA, I am in Mexico. I checked the fares and a trip would be doable. But is there any reason for me to go? Thank you for your responses. I have no one else to ask. My brother, who is with her, and I are the only siblings left. There were five of us. Our parents have moved on.

How will you feel a year from now if you go? If you don’t go?

Assuming no financial hardship; yes, you should go. I’m all for cutting ties with the less-amusing kind of dysfunctional relations, but here I see no downside. Your sister is presumably dying. You’re not going to repair a lifetime of ills, but I think it’s worth having a last interaction either way.

That’s assuming, however, that she won’t remain comatose. If she’s not expected to awaken at all, it’s probably not worth going unless you want to see the rest of the family.

I’d go, but then my family has been close and functional, so that colors my response.

Even if you weren’t all that close, she is family, and it sounds like you and the brother are all the blood she has.

If she’d been abusive or somthing, I’d say don’t go. But what is sadder than dying (almost) alone?

That’s a tough one. If financials are a concern for more than one occasion, consider whether this may be a one-time trip where she might get better - and in that case would you rather wait until she’s conscious so your visit will be meaningful to her? Do you only need the trip to be meaningful to you? And if she’s not expected to wake and may pass sometime in the next month or so, or something like that, would you want make or afford a second trip for the funeral?

Thank you Baker, that message struck home. If there is a possibility that she regains consciousness, I will go.
I thank all of you that took the time to share your thoughts. It means a lot to me in this difficult time.

Are you close with your brother? He may need your support at this time. Not just your sister.

This is real question.

If she is comatose and doesn’t awake, she won’t know that you are there. So this is more about you and, maybe, your brother. Does your brother need your support? As others said, how will you feel in a year if you don’t go?

Another issue, one that I had to deal with once, is if she dies would you go to the funeral? If you go now and then she dies next month, would you go again or would you feel better just going to one or the other?

In my case I was in England and my father was slowly dying in the USA. I had seen him 6 months before and had to make the decision to wait until he was in the very final stages of his illness before flying back to see him. As it was, he died sooner than expected so I wasn’t there. I have some regrets about that; however, I had an excellent relationship with my father and did get to talk on the phone with him.