A short update on Linda’s brother and his whole situation.


It’s been a while since we’ve updated the situation with Linda’s brother, “Ken” and his wife, “Barbie.”  In fact, it’s been about 14 months. 

I know that some of you long-time readers have followed this tale over the years and appreciate an update now and then.

For those who don’t know what the hell I’m referring to…The extreme short version is that Linda’s brother had an affair, divorced his wife and married his affair partner. I believe they recently celebrated their 7-year anniversary (give or take a year).

Obviously, it’s been a bit more of a complicated and messed up situation. 

Here are a few links to past articles we’ve written about the situation – if you care to know more.




Let’s Bring You Up To Speed

First of all, good or bad, we don’t see Ken and Barbie much at all.  We’ve probably seen Ken about 6 times since Linda’s father died last November, and maybe we’ve seen Barbie about 3 or 4 times at most.  But we know there’s good reason for that (more on that in a minute).

The last time we’ve seen them was mid-June for our son’s wedding.

But let’s first go back to Easter time. 

As usual, we had the entire family over to our house for an Italian feast.  We’ve been doing this for years.  However, this year, Ken and Barbie did not make it.  The reason given at the time was somewhat dubious and pissed Linda off, but we later discovered there was more to the story.

When Affair Partners Marry: 9 Reasons Why They Might Fail

Just prior to Easter, Linda and I went out of town for a few days and Ken was gracious enough to come down and do a few things for his mother – primarily take her to doctor appointments.  His reasoning for not coming back down for Easter was that he didn’t want to drive all that way (all of 2 hours) after just being here.  So instead, he and Barbie were going to fly down to Florida for a long weekend instead. 

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We found out later that this was all a ruse and that Barbie was actually in the hospital for several days (or some other facility) going through alcohol detox.  Ken finally admitted this a month or so after when he texted Linda that Barbie was diagnosed with Cirrhosis of the liver.  (No shocker there!)

He further disclosed that just prior to the diagnoses, Ken had consulted with an attorney and was about to file for divorce.  Apparently, Barbie was acting rather nuts and was always belligerent due to her constant state of inebriation.  And we know that they argued all-the-time.

Obviously, Linda and I were not too terribly surprised by this revelation – except perhaps by how long it had taken him to get to that point.

However, Ken decided to hold off on the divorce after the Cirrhosis diagnosis, so that he could support her with her battle with the disease.  What a guy! (If you recall, Ken’s first wife died from Cirrhosis of the liver after he left her. The cynic is me says that the only reason he didn’t go through with the divorce is because he felt that Barbie might also pass away…Why go through all the expense and potential divorce settlement/alimony with someone who might not make it? I know, kinda sick – but deviously practical!)

So, after the diagnosis, they suddenly turned over a new leaf. They both stopped drinking, started eating healthy (they always ate out), and began exercising.

Since the weather was warmer, they also started spending most of their time up on Lake Erie where they have a condo and a large boat.  

Ken told Linda that Barbie was embarrassed by her diagnosis and didn’t want to hang around friends and family while battling the disease.  Hence the reason why they spend all their time at the lake and we never see her.

When the Other Woman Becomes the Wife

Our Son’s Wedding

We finally got to see both of them together at our son’s wedding in mid-June.  And Barbie looked like shit.  She was jaundiced and maybe weighed 100 pounds at most.  She wore out easily and left both the rehearsal dinner and reception early because she was exhausted.

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In fact, our niece who took care of her mother just prior to her death from Cirrhosis, said that Barbie looked much worse than her mom did just prior to her death.  It did not appear that Barbie was going to be with us much longer. (And by-the-way, Ken’s kids do NOT feel sorry at all for her – or him.)

On the positive side, she was much more pleasant and could actually carry on a decent conversation.

Then in August, Ken texted Linda with some good news.  Barbie’s liver tests had shown remarkable improvement to the point where it would seem she had beaten back the disease.

It must have indeed been a miracle, as just a couple of weeks ago Ken posted pictures on his Facebook page while they were at a bar up in Put-in-Bay – and both of them were drinking wine.  Unbelievable!

Now I’m not a doctor or anything, but I’m pretty sure that even though Barbie’s liver tests were looking better, she still shouldn’t think that it’s a green light to start drinking again.

Hell, maybe Ken wants her to keep drinking – who knows.  (There’s that cynicism again!)

The Selfishness and Obliviousness Continues

Still Selfish and Self-Absorbed

When Ken retired back in January of 2018, one thing he said in his speech at his retirement dinner, was that he was going to spend more time with his kids and his aging parents. 

We’re wondering when that’s going to happen.

Now, I tend to want to give him a pass to some degree since he’s been ‘taking care’ of his ailing wife. (And he was very present and helpful while Linda’s father was sick and dying.)  But when all we see is pictures of them on their boat, in bars, eating out and enjoying life – it’s getting hard for me to be very forgiving.  

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He does absolutely nothing with – or for – his mother.  And it really pisses Linda off.

He did take her up to the lake with them for a few days this summer – which was like 3-days of heavenly bliss for Linda.  But otherwise, it’s been months since he’s been down here just to visit and spend time with her.

Of course, part of the reason for that is she drives him nuts.  She’s a lot like Marie from Everybody Loves Raymond.



Finally, this weekend (September 21st) he’s coming into town for his high school class reunion (Barbie isn’t coming) and he’ll be staying with his mother for a day.  Well, actually less than a day because he’ll come down Saturday afternoon, then go to the reunion until late that night.  Wake up on Sunday, eat breakfast that his mom cooks for him – and then drive back home.  (Nice to see ya, son!)

What really burns Linda’s cookies is that she had to go clean her mother’s house last Thursday – after a long day of teaching 23 first-graders – because “King Ken” was coming to visit.

But in Linda’s mother’s mind, Ken can do no wrong. After all, it was his ex-wife’s fault that he had his affair in the first place.  (That really burns Linda’s cookies when she says stuff like that!)

Oh well, this dysfunction aside, I’m really curious to see what happens next.

Assuming Barbie is indeed healthy enough, will Ken revisit the whole divorce idea?

Stay tuned.


    6 replies to "Hey, What’s Going On With Your Brother In Law?"

    • TryingHard

      oooo I love BIL updates!

      Wow wow wow. Well I’m pretty sure he wasn’t planing on this happening. But let’s see, what’s the common denominator to these two women contracting cirrhosis of the liver? Oh yeah KEN!! I’m thinking Ken ought to get his liver checked too.

      So Barbie got an encouraging diagnosis and her way of celebrating is belly up to the bar party on. She’s nuts and has made horrible life choices and continues to make horrible life choices even while facing death. Amazing. Reminds me of the OW in my life. And as you know, she’s dead too.

      I’m afraid Barbie most likely won’t be on this earth this time next year. But here’s the real question. Do you think BIL is already lining up another wife appliance to take her place once this one is 6′ under as well? That’s what I’m thinking. And he’s going to stay with her because she’s sick? That’s precious and a cover. This guy is devoid of empathy This is the same guy who gave up on his own children and treats his Mom like shit. Now way. My bs sniff-o-meter tells me something is up and there’s a new schmoopie just waiting in the wings. LOL i’m sure he’s told her to hold tight, schmoopie #2 is on her way out being God’s will and all.

      Ken is a real trip. I do feel bad for Linda.

      AND congrats on the wedding and getting a new DIL. I hope everything went well and was a fabulous day. You cried didn’t you Doug?? 🙂

      • Doug

        Hey TH, I knew that you’d appreciate the update. Uh, yes we believe that Ken is every much the alcoholic that his two wive are/have been. I imagine his day will come when he’s got problems as a result. You know, your question is an interesting one…We suspect that this ‘friend’ of theirs – who accompanies them on trips occasionally – is already at play. Our niece has told us that there has been some threesome activity with her involved. Now whether or not she will be wife number 3 is anyone’s guess. Otherwise, I’m not sure when he has time to find other women since they are together pretty much 24/7 since his retirement – though his has used Ashley Madison in the past. I know that his kids are curious what kind of a woman he’ll find next! Of course I cried! 😉 (When my daughters get married I’ll probably be a blubbering baby!)

        • TryingHard

          Doug— ha i knew you cried. Good for you. It’s pretty emotional when your kids marry.

          Wow it sounds like Ken has his backup wife appliance waiting in the wings. I figured that out too.

          A heads up. This whole health stuff isn’t going to go well. I’m sorry she’s ill but it’s from her own choosing. I doubt Ken is going to suffer though. I’ve seen this illness before and it’s not pretty. Other organs start to go bad too and then it’s downhill fast. Maybe she knows that so hey why not drink??

    • Doug

      A rather sad update to report…Linda’s sister-in-law, “Barbie” passed away late last week as a result of cirrhosis of the liver. She was 54 years old. This is wife number two for “Ken” who has died from this terrible disease.

      • Hatice

        Doug, I have read about Linda’s SIL. My sympathies to you and your family. How is Ken handling it?

      • Tryingtostandfirm

        I pray that God will touch Ken and that he will become the father his children need and deserve. It doesn’t matter how old your children are they will forever want and need their parents. Sorry for your loss.

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