PLEASE HELP: Making the best decision for the home of my cat

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PLEASE HELP: Making the best decision for the home of my cat

Post by Janelleann »

I adopted my cat in 2013, Sadie, when I was living on my own and stable. By 2016 my mental and pyshical health had deteriorated to a point where I could no longer take care of myself or my Sadie. I carefully entrusted her to one of my closest friends to love her as much as I do and care for her until I was healthy and able to care for her again. Unfortunately, for a long time my condition only became worse. Over the last year I have finally regained stability and the capacity to take care of her.
I realize it has been a long time since I lived with her, I still visit and we still have our same close bond. At certain points before I relinquished her she was literally the only reason I was still alive. I love her more than anything. She is my baby. That being said, I only want what is best for her. I just can’t google what that is.
I have informed my friend of my intentions of taking her back and she has since cut off communication. I know she has a strong attachment to my cat (she calls her “mine” and posts about it all the time. It really upsets me.) She had a cat with that same relationship. If the rolls were reversed I would never withhold her cat from her. I would never want her to hurt that way.
Legally she is microchipped to me and I have all of the adoption records, etc. My friend has taken her to the vet and paid for food etc. I have no problem paying for these costs. I am preparing to take this to court but I really rather not. Considering the length of time I am not sure how that would turn out.
All of that being said, what is in the best interest of my sweet Sadie? She turns 10 this year and I really cannot stand the thought of not spending the rest of her life together. My heart already feels broken. Am I doing her more harm by bringing het home to me?
I’m really looking for some insight on how this will affect her. It’s not about me.
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Re: PLEASE HELP: Making the best decision for the home of my cat

Post by Mollycat »

They say advice is something we ask for when we already know the answer but wish we didn't.

You and your friend each have a bond with Sadie and some legal case for ownership, and she is very important to you because she gave you a reason to get up in the mornings when you felt there was no reason. But that is you investing in her, in reality it wasn't her taking care of you, it was her need and her dependency on you that was the last thing for you to hold onto reality and sanity. Believe me I've been there. It's still very important and we never forget or stop being grateful to them for getting us through these bad places, but we use them to keep ourselves sane, they do nothing except love us unconditionally and depend on us.

I can't imagine how hard it must have been for you to hand over your beloved cat to your friend, given how much you relied on her, knowing it was in her best interests and that she would be well cared for in a way you couldn't trust yourself to guarantee for her. And this was 4 or 5 years ago - that's a long time for us compared to a lifetime of maybe 70 years, but to a cat with an expected life of maybe 12-15 years, that's one third of her life, it's like 25 years for you. Cats are very territorial so home is very important, to the point where some cats leave a loving family to return to the home the family has left. That's a strong attachment.

To be honest this friend of yours sounds like someone who must have been close to you, to help you by taking Sadie. I would focus on that friendship first and work together for Sadie's best interests, and for your continued friendship as well. If you know Sadie is loved and well cared for, maybe going to court to take her away from a family and a home that have been hers for a third of her life might be more about what you want than what she wants. I'm sorry this isn't what you want to hear, but you can't restore the past by tearing up the present. You can only move forward from where you are right now.
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Re: PLEASE HELP: Making the best decision for the home of my cat

Post by Sniper1 »

Is she happy, loved and in a stable home? It sounds like the answer is yes so why turn her life upside down and ruin a friendship just ask your friend would she like to keep her and if the answer is yes just be grateful for the fact she's safe happy and well cared for and your friend was there for you both
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Re: PLEASE HELP: Making the best decision for the home of my cat

Post by fjm »

I have to agree with the others. Five years ago you loved her enough to recognise that you could not meet her needs, and were very fortunate to have a friend able and willing to help. If you were struggling physically and emotionally at the time the stress would definitely have affected your cat, and finding a stable, happy home for her was exactly the right thing to do. I can absolutely understand wanting to have your cat with you now that you are in a better place, but I think you must once again focus on what is best for her. She is settled, much loved, and has been with your friend for half her life - the most recent half. I think that for Sadie's sake you have to accept the situation as it is, apologise to your friend, and hope to rebuild the friendship so that you can at least visit. It is very hard, I know, especially when you are so emotionally invested in her, but Sadie helped you during a very dark time, she now deserves to stay where she is happily settled, without another big disruption to her life.

It may be hard to think about at the moment but if you really are much better, and can look ahead to years of better health, I would consider another pet. Love expands to hold each one we bring home, and it may make it easier to share Sadie if you are not coming home to an empty house.
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