What It Actually Means When You’re Left Out Of The Will

Few things stop me short the way hearing about a suicide does.

For some reason my mind always jumps to wondering what collateral damage the surviving family members are left with. Especially the children. 

Maybe that’s why the story of Naomi Judd —who committed suicide this April— choosing to leave daughters Wynonna and Ashley out of her will, has been all over the news. 

The journey of a family is a long and arduous one that usually involves detours and always involves conflict and rupture. And, for the lucky ones, repair. 

Whether a family functions or is riddled with dysfunction speaks to the principles held by each member. It only takes one threadbare being to unravel it. And for those that manage to make it through all the stages of life with some semblance of cohesion, it is because the people who comprise it value family above their individual needs.

For most, the journey ends the way the family moved through it —  the healthy ones turn towards each other, while the infected ones turn on each other.

The details of why a family doesn’t get along aren’t important to anyone other than the people involved because those reasons always boil down to one of two:

The victim feels:

  • Unloved.

And / or…

  • Disrespected.

Also, there is rarely one victim. 

Which is why it should come as no surprise when one family member cuts another out of their will (money). Or doesn’t assign power equitably in the will (power).

Because people usually leave this world the way they traveled through it. 

Money and power are the emotional guns we humans wield when we feel unloved or disrespected. It’s the reason why divorce is so laden with fights about money. And why, when there’s children involved, those fights often extend to battles over who controls the children. Power and money. That’s all we’ve got in our arsenal.

So what does that mean for those of us who got dicked in a will? 

It means it’s OK if we feel:

  • Gutted.
  • Betrayed. 
  • Confused. 
  • Angry.
  • Resentful.
  • Validated (in our ability to predict the person’s behavioral patterns). 

Or even relieved. Because it’s finally over. The shitty way they treated us has finally reached an endpoint. 

But that final slap? That one stings like a mother fucker.