Fiance’s fam­ily over­whelms daugh­ter

Cape Breton Post - - HEALTH/ADVICE - Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar An­nie’s Mail­box is writ­ten by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, long­time ed­i­tors of the Ann Lan­ders col­umn. Please email your ques­tions to an­nies­mail­box@cre­, or write to: An­nie’s Mail­box, c/o Cre­ators Syn­di­cate, 73

Dear An­nie: I am run­ning out of ad­vice for my daugh­ter, "Katie." She lives with her fiance. Last year, his mid­dle-aged, dis­abled fa­ther moved in with them. A month ago, his sis­ter, her fiance and their two tod­dlers also moved in. The chil­dren wreak havoc on her clean, or­ga­nized home. Nei­ther the sis­ter nor the fa­ther will clean up af­ter them­selves when they use the kitchen. The sis­ter lets her kids get into ev­ery­thing. The fa­ther sits in his room all day.

To keep the peace, Katie chooses to keep quiet un­til she comes to see me. Then she un­loads all of her ag­gra­va­tion. I don’t know what to tell her. How does she get these lazy, sloppy peo­ple to pick up af­ter them­selves? — Katie’s Mom

Dear Mom: Katie isn’t ask­ing you for ad­vice. She is frus­trated by her home sit­u­a­tion and is vent­ing to you be­cause you are her safe refuge. If she truly wants the free­loaders to help out (or leave), she needs to dis­cuss how to han­dle this with her fiance and reach an agree­ment be­fore it over­whelms their re­la­tion­ship. Sim­ply al­low her to air her feel­ings, lis­ten at­ten­tively, nod your head and make sym­pa­thetic sounds. If she asks what to do, tell her to talk to her fiance. If she is re­luc­tant to do that, she is set­ting her­self up for a life­time of mar­i­tal mis­ery.

Dear An­nie: I am re­cently di­vorced from an abu­sive man af­ter 25 years, and I de­cided to try online dat­ing. The first site did no back­ground checks and when I did a Google search on the photos of the men who ap­proached me, I dis­cov­ered they were not who they said they were. The sec­ond dat­ing site ver­i­fied my photo and ac­count info, so I felt more se­cure. How­ever, there are scam artists there, too. One of them drew me in, but af­ter a month of texts and emails, I have come to re­al­ize he, too, just wants money. My heart is bro­ken, but I know time will heal it.

Here are my words of wis­dom for your read­ers who try online dat­ing: These sites are rife with con artists. Make sure the site does back­ground checks or ver­i­fi­ca­tion of some kind. Do not give prospec­tive suit­ors your email ad­dress. Com­mu­ni­cate only through the site. Meet only in a public place and have a friend ac­com­pany you. If he keeps com­ing up with ex­cuses to change the date, drop him. If he tells you he’s in love af­ter one or two emails, drop him. He’s a phony. If he asks you for money, even a small amount, drop him. If he tells you he has to leave for an over­seas trip and then needs money to get home, drop him.

I was so drawn in by this guy’s beau­ti­ful words and ro­manc­ing that I let my heart rule my head. Warn oth­ers. — Know Bet­ter

Dear Know: Happy to. There have al­ways been "ro­mance" scams, but the In­ter­net makes it eas­ier. En­tire in­dus­tries ex­ist to take ad­van­tage of lonely peo­ple, even on le­git­i­mate sites. There are ways to ver­ify some­one’s photo online — as well as those flow­ery, ro­man­tic state­ments — to see whether they are stolen from another source. No mat­ter how won­der­ful some­one seems, NEVER meet them in your home or theirs, or al­low them to drive you some­where. And NEVER send them money. Be care­ful.

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