Tell the whole truth, and nothing but the truth?
December 5, 2012 10:57 AM Subscribe
Is it wrong for me to share details about a deceased ex-boyfriend with his parents? Specifically, that he was my boyfriend at all. Snowflake details inside.
posted by anonymous to human relations (38 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
My former boyfriend and closest friend passed away three years ago in what was assumed to be an accidental death. We had dated for a year in college, and when he moved away after graduating we broke up, but still continued to see each other and sleep with each other several times a year and talked on the phone or IM a great deal- I naively assumed that we might get back together someday (I was 17 when we started dating, 20 when he died). His passing was a complete shock to everyone who knew him - he was a stellar student in a prestigious program, and one of the smartest, most responsible people I've ever met - his death was supposedly a accident. I grieved for a long time, and I still think of him often. His parents are understandably very very affected by his death, and have contacted me a couple times to ask about things, like what professors he did research for in undergrad. Today I was contacted by a lawyer to give a character statement on him, in what is apparently a wrongful death lawsuit, I don't know against whom.
The thing is, his parents as far as I know, don't know that we ever dated, only that we were friends. His family is of an ethnic/religious group that does arranged marriage and his parents personally frowned on a non-arranged marriage of his older brother (who quickly divorced and got an arranged marriage). As far as I know, I was his only girlfriend in college, and it was a pretty passionate, tumultuous relationship for the both of us. I don't know if he would care that they knew - now that I am older I think he knew that he would have to get an arranged marriage someday, and no matter what his feelings were for me, it would never work out, so there was no point to tell his parents and would only make them upset to think he would resist an arranged marriage.
I want to tell his parents that we dated, that I loved him, that for a long time he was the most important person in the world to me. I guess there is no real reason for me to feel that way, except for selfish reasons. I don't know if this would hurt them, to know that he kept a secret from them, or if knowing even a tiny bit more about this person that they loved so much would be better. I don't know if he would care that his parents knew. I'm going to call the lawyer back and give a statement regardless of whether I reveal that I was his girlfriend, but this has brought up a lot of feelings for me that I have kept under wraps for a long time, and I don't know whether I should continue with the status quo of not saying anything or tell someone. (I have a therapist, and have talked to them about him and our relationship, but not about this specifically)