Cou­ple’s plans hit a snag over de­tour to a strip club

The Mercury (Pottstown, PA) - - YOUR DAILY BREAK -

DEAR ABBY » My boyfriend and I have been dat­ing for a year and a half. We are plan­ning on mov­ing to Cal­i­for­nia to­gether in a few months.

I flew to Monterey to job hunt, and he is sup­posed to be fly­ing in soon. How­ever, last night I found out he and his buddy went to a strip club. My boyfriend knows I’m un­com­fort­able with him go­ing to strip clubs, and he as­sured me that they would not be go­ing when we spoke on the phone ear­lier in the evening. He says I’m con­trol­ling and child­ish for be­ing an­gry at him. I told him it’s ei­ther me or the strip clubs — mostly just to see how he would re­act. His re­sponse was that free­dom of choice is very im­por­tant to him. I even went as far as to say if he feels the need to go to strip clubs, then I would start strip­ping on the side to spite him.

I’m tempted to can­cel his ticket to Cal­i­for­nia. I don’t want him fly­ing here if we are just go­ing to fight. Is this sit­u­a­tion worth the cost of a re­la­tion­ship? How do I deal with some­one so stub­born to the point he can’t see when he’s in the wrong? Abby, he is in the wrong, isn’t he? — Choice is clear DEAR CHOICE » A wise woman chooses her bat­tles care­fully. If your boyfriend spent more than an oc­ca­sional evening hang­ing out in strip clubs, I can see why it would be a deal breaker. But un­less you left some­thing im­por­tant out of your let­ter — like the fact that he did more than look — it doesn’t appear that he does.

You es­ca­lated the sit­u­a­tion and you shouldn’t have. How­ever, if you feel so strongly about strip clubs, per­haps you should con­sider find­ing an­other man to spend your life with be­cause it re­ally isn’t pos­si­ble to con­trol the ac­tions of an­other adult.

DEAR ABBY » My 33-year-old daugh­ter re­cently moved back home af­ter fail­ing to finish a grad­u­ate pro­gram. I dis­cov­ered she was an al­co­holic a few years ago and en­cour­aged her to get treat­ment. She was in an out­pa­tient recovery pro­gram and mak­ing progress, but re­cently re­lapsed.

Be­fore her re­lapse, her dad and I helped her to buy a busi­ness, which is not do­ing well. Her em­ploy­ees quit, and she lost a lot of in­come. She started go­ing to AA meet­ings, and hired some peo­ple she met who at­tend and live in a half­way house.

I re­gret help­ing her, and I now re­al­ize I must stop all in­ter­ac­tions with her. She has a huge sense of en­ti­tle­ment and does not ap­pre­ci­ate my help. I feel I have failed as a par­ent and hope I can move past this and work through my de­pres­sion. Any ad­vice you can of­fer is wel­come. — Best mom i can be DEAR BEST MOM » You have not “failed” as a par­ent. Your daugh­ter has an ad­dic­tion. Her ad­dic­tion is not your fault. Sub­stance abusers have been known to fall off the wagon on their road to so­bri­ety, and this is what hap­pened to your daugh­ter.

It would be help­ful for you to talk about your de­pres­sion with a li­censed men­tal health pro­fes­sional who is fa­mil­iar with ad­dic­tions, and to at­tend some AlAnon meet­ings. Be­cause you feel your re­la­tion­ship with your daugh­ter has reached the point that she can no longer live with you, tell her she must make other liv­ing ar­range­ments and set a date for her to move out. Do not do it in anger. In fact, it may be bet­ter for both of you.

Dear Abby

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