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Sunday Confessional: I Didn't Mean To Be Insensitive

Sunday Confessional: I Didn't Mean To Be Insensitive

A few days ago, my sister emailed me with some terrible news. Her dog, that she had for 7 years, had been unexpectedly rushed to the emergency room in the middle of the night. He was in horrible pain, and after taking an x-ray, she and her husband discovered that he had cancer. A tumor had ruptured and there was nothing the vet could do. They had to put him down.

She had raised him from a puppy and her 2-year old girl adored the dog. While I was devastated for her loss, I'm not really an animal person so I really couldn't sympathize with her.

After work, I called to tell her how sorry I was, and to see if there was anything I could do. I was a little scared to call, I just didn't know what to say and in my nervousness, I blurted out the suggestion that she should get another puppy from the breeder that my friend had just gotten a dog from. She got really upset, yelled "How could you even bring up the idea?" and then hung up on me.

I admit that it was probably too soon to bring up replacing their dog, but I was only trying to make her feel better. She totally took it the wrong way and now she's not speaking to me. Do you think she is over-reacting or was I truly being an insensitive person?

Source

herjoiedevivre herjoiedevivre 10 years
I'm not an animal person either, so if I wasn't thinking I might've said that too. forgive, definitely. now you know what not to say, and it's your sister, they have to cool off and talk to you again eventually. :)
vmruby vmruby 10 years
Definitely forgive...... I believe your heart was in the right place and not being a huge animal lover it's sometimes hard to understand how attached we animal lovers are to our pets. IMO you did nothing wrong except to make a suggestion you thought would help.We are all guilty of that at one time or another.Give her a call,tell her you are sorry and give her time to heal. Good Luck!
dguillenm dguillenm 10 years
your heart was in the right place but replacing a loved puppy is like replacing a child after they are lost it takes time to realize they must go on and not live in the moment best thing is be patient she will come around just remember to be availble and be a good listen
hepsmom hepsmom 10 years
I, too have been an obsessed pet owner. My precious cock-a-poo died two years ago. I still haven't been able to get another pet. I loved this dog as if she were my child. My then-pregnant sister suggested that I have her put down, because my dog was having trouble getting around due to old age. It took me a while to forgive her. I told her that her request was similar to me requesting that she have an abortion. I realize now how harsh that was at the time, but that's how much I loved my pooch. She'll forgive you eventually.
ur_momm ur_momm 10 years
as an obsessed pet owner, i can totally understand how she feels, my dog is like my child, raising him, waking up 4 times a night to bring him out, all that stuff... i cant imagine how attached i will be when he is 2. i say dont worry, she will come around, its really just the innitial shock, she is taking out her anger on you. just give her a bit of time and everything will be fine!
tamberly tamberly 10 years
seriously who voted to not forgive?? This is TOTALLY forgivable and the sister is probably just really sad and snappy.
pinupsweetheart pinupsweetheart 10 years
Forgive. I don't think it was the BEST thing for you to say right after she suddenly lost her dog, but I think she was just too upset and took it the wrong way. I would call her back and tell her how sorry you are. We all say things at the moment that we didn't mean to.
marthalilian126 marthalilian126 10 years
Forgive. You did your best and we all sometimes say the wrong thing at the wrong time. What matters is that your intentions were good. Send your sister a card and perhaps some flowers to let her know that you were not trying to be hurtful and I'm sure that she will forgive you sooner than later.
smp7328 smp7328 10 years
Totally forgive.
the-makeup-blogette the-makeup-blogette 10 years
your friend should come around soon. i am a dog lover too, and can never bear the thought of her leaving or even replacing her, but well - not everyone shares the same kind of bond. you have no bad intentions, i hope your friend will get over it and talk to you soon.
SugarFreak SugarFreak 10 years
Forgive Forgive. A lot of people, including myself, are horrible at figuring out what to say at someone's loss. I get all awkward because bottom line is that I DON'T know what the person is going through. I have never had a parent pass nor a pet pass nor a spouse pass...so to try to console and give solice to another is just odd for me because I am so afraid of putting my foot in my mouth. The important thing you have to remember is that your heart was in the right place and you said what you said with NO ILL INTENT. You thought you were saying something helpful. Let a few days pass and let her grieve in her own way, then talk to her and tell her that you love her and you didn't mean to upset her--that was the last thing you wanted to do. She should understand, if not right away, then surely after a little bit of time has passed and the trauma has worn off.
Marci Marci 10 years
Completely forgivable. No one ever really knows what to say at times like these, and as a result, we sometimes say the wrong thing with the best of intentions. Just call her and tell her how bad you feel. She might even realize her reaction was a little harsh.
7kimba7 7kimba7 10 years
Forgive. You were trying to make her feel better. Send her a note or something and tell her that you didn't mean to imply that pets are that easily replaced and you were just trying to be there for her.
StefaPie StefaPie 10 years
forgive, but you need to sincerely apologize in detail, and don't be such a dumbass again.
Pink81406 Pink81406 10 years
That's a little ridiculous. I have 3 dogs and no children. I understand her being upset maybe you've been insensitive about animals before, but to get angry and hang up on you, then not talk to you. She sounds like a drama queen. A simple its too soon would have sufficed. I would just let her chill for a bit.
leeluvfashion leeluvfashion 10 years
So forgivable! You meant well, it was just horrible timing. Tell her your sorry and that you didn't mean to be insensitive. It was a good idea however you shouldn't say it right after the death; wait a month or two.
yoan190 yoan190 10 years
It's forgivable. All you have to do is to apologize.
Pir8Liz Pir8Liz 10 years
Forgiveable. It's hard for a person to think about getting another dog while they're mourning the loss of their beloved pet. However, it does seem to be a good option for young children. You teach them to mourn the loss and respect the life and good times that you've had with the pet, then when it's comfortable for the parent, you bring in a new animal to continue the happiness that having a pet brings to the family.
redhot redhot 10 years
she just upset needing to be angry
millarci millarci 10 years
Definetly forgive. It was an accident.
kendalheart kendalheart 10 years
Forgive, you weren't being mean she is very sensitive right now. Give her time.
nessabum nessabum 10 years
forgive. you had no intention of hurting your sister.
PJ-PJ-PJ PJ-PJ-PJ 10 years
Totally forgivable. I know exactly what your sister is going through, but she is overreacting. However, just keep in mind that she is in the middle of her grief & it's not easy to make good judgment....just like you didn't intend to stick your foot in your mouth. We lost our dog (She was our only BABY.) a year ago & we are still not ready for a new puppy. I'll tell you, a lot of people are quick to suggest you immediately get a new dog, even the people who are big time pet lovers. So don't sweat it too much. I would just send her a sympathy card & a simple note that says you're sorry for being insensitive & that it was truly not your intent to suggest their dog was so easily replaceable, but more of a way to help them cope. Tell her you'll be there for her when she calls. If she still holds a grudge, it's her problem. Try not to beat yourself up over it.
lickety-split lickety-split 10 years
forgive, and since your heart was in the right place and you weren't suggesting she replace the dog that died, but rather that a new pet might bring them joy i thing she was really mean to be so upset with you. i honestly don't get why people think that because they are upset they have a pass for poor behavior. yes her dog died, but you called to be kind, to offer support, to tell her you were thinking about them and she hung up the phone on you. i hope she's holding it together better for her daughter than she did for you. she needs to get over being upset at you and get on with the real issue, which is grieving the loss of her pet. and if i were you and she brought it up again i would tell her just that and then move on. something like "i know you are missing brownie but your comments are uncalled for. my intent was to offer support for your loss, clearly you took it in another way and i'm not sure why that was. perhaps when you are through the grieving process we can revisit the issue. so tell me, how is (niece) enjoying the cooler days"
junebrug junebrug 10 years
As forgivable as anything ever was. Your heart was in the right place, but your sister is in pain and is looking to lash out at anyone and everyone right now. Don't expect her to be rational. Yes, you should have waited to suggest getting a new dog, but you only wanted help. Give her a week or two, then call to apologize and explain you only wanted to fill the hole in her heart. That should do it.
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