Dear Answer Mom: My daughter is in her second year at an out-of-town college. Since she’s there she’s been dating a fellow student. We’re planning a family vacation during her school leave. Now she says she wants to spend time with her boyfriend and can he come along with us. She says this is important to her. I’ve been looking forward to just my husband, my younger son, my daughter and me spending time together. I’m unsure. Should we invite him? If we do invite him should he pay for himself? Amway shouldn’t there be a time when just immediate family still counts? –Rhoda
Dear Rhoda: Yes there should be and there was. That time was before any of your children left home for any reason. Once they go and do what grown ups do – make new relationships – the door opens, vacations are shared, holidays split, tables extended. Your daughter is in a relationship that is important to her. So – if you want a happy camper invite him. He is then a guest of yours and if you can afford it you pay. If not speak to your daughter about the two of them possibly sharing some of the cost. Whatever you do – enjoy. The future is here.
Dear Answer Mom: We saw your column at our casino online mother’s house and hope you can give us some advice. Our parents have been separated for many years. Now, finally, my mother is going to sue my father for money he owes her. My sister, brothers and I love pokies online them both but don’t’ want to take sides. My mother keeps trying to tell us why she’s doing this and my father keeps trying to tell us how he has no money. We’re with my mother more of the time. How can we get her to stop trying to involve us? —The Grown Up Kids
Dear Grown Ups: Declare a neutral zone with your sister and brothers. Tell your mother that you love her and whatever she has to do for herself is o.k. with you. Tell your father you love him and will continue to do so no matter how this turns out. Tell them both to please leave all of you out of it and refuse to give an opinion. Recognize that your mother’s trying to involve you is because she’s afraid of losing your approval and love. Reassurance is what she needs.
Questions for the Answer Mom? Send them to Helen Oxenberg, MSW, ACSW at Helen@mothering21.com.