Despite the celebrations of Christmas and New Year, it is also a time of stress for many families, including those whose relatives, for whatever reason, walk out.
In many cases such behaviour is difficult to fathom, but it causes enormous distress and suffering among those who are left behind.
Nevertheless, hope springs eternal, and in the early stages many families do not give up.
However, as time passes the hope fades a little each year, but people should remain vigilant and try not to lose hope altogether.
Some people do come back, and no matter how difficult the waiting is, it is always better to never say "never."