Times Colonist

Most of us can’t go home again

- RHONA RASKIN Ask Rhona

Dear Rhona: I am one of those people who basically sneaked out of home to get independen­t. I pretended two years ago that I was going across the country for a summer job but I knew I wasn’t returning. My folks are great people but there’s no way they envisioned my leaving home for any reason other than marriage and I was afraid I’d still be there when I was 45. They still don’t get it and are planning to redecorate my bedroom “for when I come back.” How do I tell them it isn’t going to happen? I’m the oldest kid and my two brothers live at home.

The Girl Is Gone

Dear GIG: Good for you for resisting the convenienc­e of freshly folded and fluffed sheets and mom’s hot apple pie. Your folks probably come from another era or culture that expected kids to enlarge their family by marriage — as opposed to shrinking it by leaving. You will never see the world quite the way your parents do but you can appreciate their motive — which is to provide safety, affection and financial aid. Let them know you appreciate their generosity but that it would make you happy to know that your bedroom was being transforme­d into a space that everybody could use. You are their first to take flight, the icebreaker. Your siblings will find it easier. Your parents will eventually get used to the idea of your absence. It’s their job to make changes as they retire from their full time parenting gig.

Dear Rhona: Now that the nice weather is here could you please say a few words about bad summer clothing choices? I see very overweight women in peek-a-boobelly outfits and guys with hairy armpits sticking out of sleeveless shirts. It all makes me want to pull a hood over my head. I’m not a perfection­ist or an old lady I’m 34 and working on losing a few pounds myself but I would never prance out the door with everything swinging in the breeze.

On The Bus and Cringing

Dear OTB: I sympathize with you but in most parts of this country people are so happy to ditch their fake fur coats that they can hardly wait to pop into something yellow and airy. Since you can’t really legislate taste I’m afraid you’ll have to wince your way home until October. Yes, it’s possible to be comfy and classy at the same time but unless you are willing to outfit the world you’ll have to don dark sunglasses and develop a sense of humour.

Dear Rhona: I’m not even sure why I am writing because this is probably the stupidest problem ever. I am a reasonably attractive female, but no beauty. I’m fairly fit, over 40 and I dress fashionabl­y but not provocativ­ely. I don’t know why, but I get a lot of attention from random men on the street whistling, comments, smiles. I am both embarrasse­d and flattered at the same time. Lately I’ve started to smile and say thanks. Do you think this is the right thing to do?

Want To Blend

Dear WTB: You have a certain something that wakes up male molecules in your vicinity. Who cares what it is, just learn to enjoy it. I bet you have an intelligen­t and approachab­le personalit­y, which may be more apparent to others than you suspect. Many powerful people are not particular­ly beautiful but they emit a sense of mystery or sensuality. Enjoy. This may not be a problem in 20 years. And you may miss it.

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