Ask Amy: Son asks Dad to keep girlfriends away from family

2014-03-17T00:00:00Z 2014-07-03T11:27:28Z Ask Amy: Son asks Dad to keep girlfriends away from familyBy Amy Dickinson Tribune Content Agency Arizona Daily Star
March 17, 2014 12:00 am  • 

DEAR AMY: I have an adult son. I have been divorced from his mother for 10 years and I am currently using online matching services.

I was in a relationship last year that lasted approximately 10 months.

My son and his wife and their young daughters met my girlfriend a number of times, and we stayed at their home over a few weekends last summer.

I have had a number of dates since then, and I have been dating my current “girlfriend” for eight weeks.

My son invited us to spend the weekend with them. Afterward my son sent me a message saying how much everyone enjoyed my date. He asked if they would be seeing her again. I told him most likely not since I really don’t see this relationship lasting much longer.

I then received a message stating that they did not want me to bring any girlfriends again. His reasons being that it wasn’t “fair” to them or my granddaughters! Do you think they have a valid point? I have not responded to their message. — Befuddled

DEAR BEFUDDLED: You can imagine that this round robin of dates, while perhaps awesome for you, is confusing to others who get attached and undoubtedly assign their own private expectations to the relationship.

It can be very challenging for younger kids to grow fond of various partners and then see these people disappear for no reason, except that “Granddad and his girlfriend broke up.”

It is completely within their rights to tell you they won’t be inviting your girlfriends to visit for weekends. Knowing this, you may choose not to visit as often.

Introducing someone you have dated for only eight weeks to your family is not a great idea for anyone — her or your family. You should keep your dating life private unless you are in a very long-term relationship.

Your son might have an attachment to the idea that you find a permanent life partner. If you don’t want this (or see this in your own future), tell him.

DEAR AMY: My sister “B” is in her late 30s and is, I believe, a hypochondriac.

She is convinced that she has an assortment of ailments and is constantly seeing various doctors. None of the doctors ever finds anything seriously wrong with her, which leads her to believe that they are incompetent.

Every conversation that I have with her ends up focusing on an illness she believes she has. Her behavior seems to be getting worse.

She has missed a lot of family events, and has backed out of plans we’ve made many times, stating that she can’t because she’s sick.

I am very angry and hurt by her behavior, sometimes to the point where I don’t want to have a relationship with her at all.

How can I handle this? — Little Sis

DEAR SIS: You should tell your sister that you are worried about her. If she is open to a suggestion from you, you should recommend that she see a mental-health counselor who can help her sort out her frustrations and anxieties regarding her health.

You should also say her behavior affects you: “I am disappointed when every conversation turns to your health. It makes me feel like you don’t care as much about me.”

DEAR AMY: You recently answered “Not ‘Liking’ This” about a friend’s skin-showing Facebook pictures. This person’s concerns, and your reply, were way off base.

The person in question is a grown woman. If she is looking for the “wrong” type of attention, she has every right to seek it.

The fact that everyone is worried that her employment will be at risk is ridiculous in that a place of work should not demand female employees conform to their standard of modesty on their own time.

This is a classic example of people attempting to force women to cover up the skin they were born in, and it’s called “slut shaming.”

I say, let this grown woman do what she pleases, as the only ones harmed by her “immodesty” are those who choose to be offended. — Slut Grrls

DEAR GRRLS: Those who don’t like these photos also have a right to express their opinion, certainly over as public a venue as Facebook.

Contact Amy Dickinson via email: askamy@tribune.com

Follow her on Twitter @askingamy or “like” her on Facebook. Amy Dickinson’s memoir, “The Mighty Queens of Freeville: A Mother, a Daughter and the Town that Raised Them” (Hyperion), is available in bookstores.)

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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