The Dallas Morning News

Just say no to gamer boyfriend


Dear Abby: My daughter and her boyfriend have been together for four years. He is almost 30, very immature and constantly distracted by his phone or video games.

He travels with his PlayStatio­n everywhere he goes. When he comes into our house, he sets up his console in the living room, puts on headphones and plays games all day and night. If the family asks to use the TV for a few hours, he will sit on the sofa and take a nap or pull out his phone and continue gaming.

I know nothing more about him than I did the first month I met him.

He is rude, boorish, selfcenter­ed and has a criminal record (drugs). They live in another state, and for my daughter’s sake, I try to accommodat­e him. When I asked for them to “visit us, not our TV,” she became very defensive.

How do I deal with this addiction? My daughter now wants to bring him along while we have our mother/daughter lunch and manicures. It’s like he’s 3 and has to tag along. He has no friends. When she goes out for a night with her girlfriend­s, we are expected to “baby-sit.” I’ve never encountere­d anything like this. Done Mothering in Pennsylvan­ia

Dear Done: You have to learn to say no to your daughter and her “boy”friend. If you want to watch television for a few hours during their visit, remember it’s your home and you don’t have to apologize for it. If you want a mother/daughter lunch and she wants to drag him along, say, “No, this is our time. An hour or so alone with you is not too much to ask.”

Stop allowing your daughter — and her socially inadequate boyfriend — to dictate what’s happening under your roof. Until you put your foot down, nothing will change.

Dear Abby: I have a niece and nephew who will be graduating at the same time this spring. My nephew is getting a degree from a four-year college. My niece is getting a beautician’s license from a trade school.

I will be giving them both graduation gifts, but should the amount be based on their level of education, or the fact that they have both completed their educations?

I don’t want my niece to feel slighted. She chose a profession she loves but does not require further education. I don’t want my nephew to feel slighted because he worked longer at far greater expense. Unsure in the East

Dear Unsure: If you are worried that your niece and nephew will compare your gifts, give each the same amount.

What these gifts memorializ­e is not the money that was spent on their educations, but rather that they have both attained the level of education for which they were working.


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