Is there anything I can do to help my sister escape her abusive relationship?

My sister is in an emotionally abusive relationship. He is also unfaithful. After she married him I slowly watched her cut all ties with her friends and then she started to cut ties with the family. She refuses to see or speak to me. I believe she no longer speaks to me because I supported her efforts to leave him by offering for her to live with me rent free and I offered to help her pay her portion of the mortgage until they could sell their house. Then she changed her mind and decided to stay with him. I did not give her a hard time about her decision because I feared being cut out of her life. Her husband needed a new car and they couldn’t afford one so I offered to give them mine, as I was purchasing a new car. They refused this and then she cut me out of her life. Before she stopped talking to me she told me that no one else would ever love her. I feel like his verbal abuse has ruined her life. Is there anything I can do to help her?

You are a very generous and supportive person. Try to maintain a link with your sister. Perhaps email is the easiest. Once every week or two send her an email that is just chatty and letting her know you care for her.  Don’t offer her anything other than your friendship. Don’t make any requests or demands that you get together. She may not respond but don’t give up.

Just send your email every two weeks talking about nothing in particular, giving a bit of family news.  Don’t show a lot of emotion, don’t say you miss her a lot or that you are worried about her. Do say a bit about your hobbies or pastimes, even talk about the weather.  Keep the note at 100-150 words so as not to overwhelm her.

She will know you are there for her. She will respond when she is ready.

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