The Middletown Press (Middletown, CT)

Son demands couple pay for tuition

- Jeanne Phillips Write to Dear Abby at P.O. Box 96440, Los Angeles, CA 90069 or

Dear Abby: What financial responsibi­lity do parents have to their adult children and grandchild­ren? We are a blended family of 35 years. It is the second marriage for my wife and me, with four children and eight grandchild­ren. One child insists it is our responsibi­lity to assist with the cost of educating his two children. Over the last 15 years, we have gifted him and his family well over $50,000. We are middle income, and trying to stay solvent enough to assure we are able to meet any unforeseen expenses of senior living while enjoying opportunit­ies in our retirement. What is customary in other blended families?

Wondering in the South

Dear Wondering: Your son is off base, and you have every right to refuse this demand. The cost of raising and educating children is something that should have been taken into considerat­ion before those children were born. This responsibi­lity rests with him and his spouse, not with you, and I hope you will resist the impulse to alter your lifestyle to placate him. If you do otherwise, you may wind up in financial trouble.

Dear Abby: My husband and his sister had a huge falling out several months ago. It was a long time coming, and resulted in the two of them no longer speaking.

This week, we received an invitation from my sister-inlaw for a family celebratio­n. It was followed by an email to my husband saying that if he wants to come to the event, he first needs to “make it right by her and her family” and apologize for his behavior. My husband doesn’t feel he did anything wrong and doesn’t particular­ly want to go. He is now feeling manipulate­d to acquiesce because refusing an invitation to a family event will upset his mother. What should he do?

Watching from the Sidelines

Dear Watching: Your husband is right. He should call or visit his mother, explain the entire situation to her, and warn her in advance that he won’t be going.

Dear Abby: What advice can you give me to get my ex-girlfriend back after I hurt her and broke her trust? It has been four months, and I have given her space and tried to improve myself. We work together, so seeing her every day and not talking to her is hard. I would like to fix things between us, but she’s very stubborn. We talked every day and every minute of the day, and I lost my best friend and my partner whom I love so much.

Her Former Girlfriend in Kentucky

Dear Former G.F.: If you haven’t already told her how sorry you are and that you love her, you should. Then ask what you can do to rebuild her trust. If she still refuses to communicat­e after that, you may have to accept that the damage done.

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