Wedding Woes

Why would you want to respond to what seems to be a stalker?

Dear Prudence,

I recently received Facebook friend requests from two different women, along with messages. The first woman hails from my hometown. She also sent me a message via She states that we are closely related. When I checked my Ancestry “Relationships” tab, I found out she may be my half-sister via my father. The second woman is my new half-sister’s sister-in-law. The sister-in-law blew up my inbox with repeated messages, calls, and photos. I did not respond. She proceeded to contact my Facebook friends and asked for my contact information and for them to persuade me to call her.

I am a 55-year-old gay man with a husband. My father may not have been the worst father, but he was definitely verbally and emotionally abusive. He got better as he mellowed with age, but we were never the closest family. He has been dead now for eight years. My mother is 88 and lives close to me. I do not want her to know about this, as it would make her even more bitter and hurt her feelings unnecessarily. My sister is in agreement and has no desire to reach out to this woman. My brother may want to know, as he is very family-oriented. It’s not like I have great stories to share with this woman and truthfully, I don’t really want to revisit the past. It was difficult enough. I feel for her, but what are my obligations here?

—Reeling Relatives

Re: Why would you want to respond to what seems to be a stalker?

  • Block that SIL, she has nothing to do with this!

    And as Banana says, contact the Sister once.  I would also tell the sister how harassing the SIL has been to you and your friends.  Hopefully the sister would tell the SIL to back off too.
  • banana468 said:
    The only thing I'd consider is saying - ONCE, "I appreciate that you are looking to contact me based on a possible biological relationship but for personal reasons I am not interested in pursuing this.   Thank you in advance for your understanding." 

    Then block her. 
    I agree.  I think it's a kindness, and also an opportunity to give them "notice", to send one reply back.  The "stalking" might simply come from the people want to make sure the LW has gotten the message.

    If they are reasonable people, the reply would show the LW got the message, but does not want further contact and they will respect that.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • OMG I could almost have written this letter. There is a woman who (theoretically) found out (through that her father was either one of my uncles or my father. She contacted one of my many cousins and my brother via FB. She found my page (I'm assuming through one of them) and downloaded a picture of me! She never actually contacted me (I have blocked her from FB) but has talked about contacting my elderly stepmother who is ill. She even drove by her house. My cousin and brother have told her to back off. From talking with family we figured out who her father was (probably), and it wasn't my Dad. My Dad and all his brothers (there were 5 of them) are all deceased. So yeah, block her and don't respond to the SIL (block her too). My cousin and brother have since blocked her.
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