Snide re­marks about boyfriend irks daugh­ter

Albuquerque Journal - - PUZZLES - Abi­gail Van Buren Con­tact Dear Abby at DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los An­ge­les, CA 90069.

DEAR ABBY: I’m a 35-year-old sin­gle mom. Sev­eral months ago, I started see­ing “Joey,” a friend of a cou­ple of years. He’s sweet, re­spect­ful, hard­work­ing, and he helps me when­ever I need it.

Joey is on the heavy side, but he’s clean and kempt. I in­tro­duced him to my mom, and she con­tin­ues to say he is “gross.” She refers to him only as “that man” and never by his name. He has al­ways been very po­lite and has never said any­thing to her out of the way.

My son and I have lived with Mom ever since my di­vorce, and I have helped her out with more than my share of the bills. I’m cur­rently try­ing to buy a house, but the mar­ket is com­pet­i­tive. I work full time, take great care of my son and do lots of chores around the house.

How can I con­vince my mother to ac­cept Joey, or should I ig­nore what she says as long as he’s good to my son and me? — FOUND A GOOD GUY IN THE SOUTH

DEAR FOUND: Noth­ing you can do will make your mother ac­cept Joey. Most par­ents judge the men in their daugh­ters’ lives by how they treat their daugh­ters, rather than a num­ber on the scale. Has it oc­curred to you that she may be afraid your re­la­tion­ship with Joey could de­velop to the point you will no longer be around to do chores and help her with the bills?

From your de­scrip­tion of him, “that man” is def­i­nitely a keeper. As long as he is good to you and your son and you care for him, please don’t al­low your mother to dis­cour­age you. As an adult, it’s im­por­tant to make your own de­ci­sions and live your own life with­out in­ter­fer­ence.

DEAR ABBY: My younger sis­ter is a bipo­lar, nar­cis­sis­tic, psy­chotic, evil woman with bach­e­lor’s and master’s de­grees in psy­chol­ogy and coun­sel­ing. She has hated me from birth.

She spreads lies about me be­cause our mother was alive for my wed­ding and not for hers and, ac­cord­ing to her, it’s my fault. I made her maid of honor at my wed­ding and god­mother to my child, but no mat­ter what I do, she com­plains to any­one who will lis­ten about what a hor­ri­ble per­son she thinks I am. Be­cause of her ed­u­ca­tion, fam­ily mem­bers be­lieve ev­ery­thing she says.

How can I con­vince my rel­a­tives to lis­ten to me? I have no one on my side when it comes to her be­cause the fam­ily knows about her men­tal health is­sues and tell me to get over it. — CAN’T GO ON LIKE THIS

DEAR CAN’T GO ON: That your sis­ter has grad­u­ate de­grees in psy­chol­ogy and coun­sel­ing does not guar­an­tee that she isn’t men­tally ill. Your rel­a­tives are aware of her men­tal health is­sues and have ad­vised you not to over­re­act. Per­haps you should take that to heart.

Find an­other god­mother for your child, be­cause clearly this one is un­suit­able, and spend as lit­tle time around your sis­ter as you can. If nec­es­sary, start re­plac­ing un­sup­port­ive fam­ily mem­bers with friends you can trust to be sup­port­ive. The only thing you should NOT do is con­tinue to al­low your sick sis­ter to rule your life.

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