Mon | Nov 19, 2018

Ask the doc: My parents left nothing for my 'sister'

Published:Tuesday | January 12, 2016 | 12:00 AM

Q: My parents have died and did not legally adopt my sister, and she is now 18 and claiming money from the estate. She lived with us for five years. I am 22, in college, and have no other close family members. I am so sad. The lawyer says nothing was left for her. I thought we would be close forever. How do I cope with this?

A: You need to sit with a counsellor and your sister and see how you both can resolve the matter. If you make any financial decisions, ensure that your lawyer and the persons responsible for the estate know.


Q: My child, who has a physical disability, will be sitting the Grade Six Achievement Test in March. Will he get any special support services?

A: Please ask your principal to contact the closest Ministry of Education regional office. They will guide you accordingly.


Q: How do I explain death to a four-year-old?

A: You simply say that the person has gone to sleep and that you will not see them again until what your belief system shares. If you are a Christian, you can add the concept of the second coming to your explanation.

- Orlean Brown-Earle, PhD, is a child psychologist and family therapist. Dr Brown-Earle works with children with learning and behavioural problems throughout the island and in the Caribbean. Email questions to or send to Ask the Doc, c/o The Gleaner Company, 7 North Street, Kingston. Responses to concerns are to be considered as general, as cases shared with psychologists privately would be queried more deeply. Pray always!