Mom stressed by one child should not try for an­other

The Washington Times Daily - - LIFE - ABI­GAIL VAN BUREN

DEAR ABBY: My daugh­ter asked me if she should have an­other child, and based on what I have ob­served with her first, I def­i­nitely feel she shouldn’t. I want a po­lite way to re­spond with­out hurt­ing her feel­ings, but can’t find the words.

She loves her child, but loses pa­tience quickly. She can’t han­dle it when her 2-year-old whines or cries. Some­times she needs to leave the house. Can you help? — DEF­I­NITELY NOT IN ORE­GON

DEAR DEF­I­NITELY NOT: Ev­ery par­ent feels this way some­times.

That’s why God in­vented grand­par­ents and baby sit­ters. How­ever, if you feel your daugh­ter can’t han­dle the stress, be hon­est with her and tell her why you have “con­cerns.”

DEAR ABBY: My daugh­ter has been friends with twin girls for sev­eral years. Their par­ents are di­vorced, and we’ve al­ways known that money is tight in their fam­ily.

We in­vite them over to eat as of­ten as we can, and they know our home is their home and a safe place.

The girls are now all ap­ply­ing to col­leges, but the twins have re­peat­edly ex­pressed con­cern that they don’t have enough money to pay the ACT sub­mis­sion fees or the col­lege sub­mis­sion fees. They are both work­ing long hours and try­ing to save money for col­lege.

We are in a po­si­tion to help them sub­mit th­ese ap­pli­ca­tions, but don’t know how to ap­proach the topic. We are not close with ei­ther of their par­ents. Most im­por­tant, we don’t want to risk a par­ent telling the girls they can’t spend time at our home. How can we help? — ENOUGH TO SHARE

DEAR ENOUGH TO SHARE: You are gen­er­ous and com­pas­sion­ate to want to do this. Be­cause the girls spend so much time at your home, it’s likely their par­ents al­ready know their daugh­ters are friendly with your fam­ily. I do not think it would be of­fen­sive if you were to call the par­ents and make the of­fer. If they are re­luc­tant to ac­cept, you could pro­pose it as a “loan” that can be re­paid af­ter the girls grad­u­ate.

DEAR ABBY: My fa­ther-in-law died a cou­ple of months ago, and since then my mother-in-law in­sists that one of her kids spend the night with her. She told them that “peo­ple” have told her she should not spend a night alone for at least a year.

This is caus­ing grief and bit­ter­ness be­cause my hus­band has ex­plained to her that when he stayed the first two weeks, he left me at home alone, and it was time she started fac­ing things and move on.

What are the obli­ga­tions of the chil­dren when a par­ent dies? His mother doesn’t need them fi­nan­cially. Are we be­ing too hard on her, or does she need to seek help with mov­ing on? We are afraid that if she keeps this up, she’s go­ing to push her­self into an early grave or drive her kids away. — TIRED OF SLEEP­ING ALONE

DEAR TIRED: My deep­est sym­pa­thy to your mother-in-law for her loss, but it is not the re­spon­si­bil­ity of an adult child to leave his (or her) spouse to sleep with Mama for a year. A week or two, per­haps — but cer­tainly not a year.

His mother should talk to her cler­gyper­son or doc­tor about join­ing a grief sup­port group to help her through this dif­fi­cult time. And if she’s afraid to be alone in the house — and she’s an an­i­mal lover — a so­lu­tion to that could be for her to adopt a dog from an an­i­mal res­cue or­ga­ni­za­tion.

● Dear Abby is writ­ten by Abi­gail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Con­tact Dear Abby at or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.

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