Dear Amy: I am a 33 year old female. My daughter is 11 years old.
He and I live with my parents.
My parents own the house, and I pay them rent every month.
Both my parents are in their early 70s. My father works part time.
It doesn’t seem like they need the extra money that my rental provides (they’re always buying new games and gadgets for themselves).
I want to make my own life. I want to move to my apartment with my daughter.
I researched apartments, made a budget, and also concluded that I would continue to pay my parents the rent money I currently pay, so they wouldn’t be without that income.
When I told my parents about my plans to move out, they told me the story of how sad they would be, and how they felt that I was leaving them in their time of need.
I don’t give anything except money. I don’t take them to doctor’s appointments or to the grocery store.
I am usually at work during the day. My mom home-schools my daughter, and I wasn’t planning on replacing her.
I just need my own space and want to go out on my own.
How can I help my parents be more comfortable with this?
– mother daughter
Dear Mother/Daughter: Your parents have a lot of attachment and emotional stake in you and your daughter.
That’s how parents and grandparents roll! It’s not just about the rent money you pay them. They are connected to you. His lifelong investment is in you.
And just like parents sometimes give their babies a gentle nudge out of the nest (say, “You can do this!”), you’re about to go through the opposite of that process.
Express your gratitude: “We couldn’t have gotten here without you.”
Offer confirmation of their feelings: “I know this will be an adjustment for all of us. I will miss you dearly too.”
Give lots of reassurances: “We’ll still see you almost every day, and I’ll always be there if you need me, like you’ve always been there for me.”
And then—make your plan, don’t let them manipulate you, and start the next chapter in your life.
Dear Amy: I have a long-term friend (for over 45 years) who adopted a wonderful, lovable, lovable shelter dog at the start of the pandemic. However, over the past two years, his laser focus on this dog has become a rapidly growing problem that borders on obsession!
It’s okay if she wants to spend a lot of her time and money on a dog, but every conversation begins with a story about what the dog has done or is doing, how someone can’t care for a dog up to her standards. (As such, it tracks with a Wi-Fi collar the route the dog takes when walking).
If someone is having a serious conversation with her and the dog does something “interesting,” she will literally interrupt the conversation and derail the dog to talk about it.
I love this dog too, but the constant attention to his pooch makes me not want to be around him or the dog.
How can I help her understand that her lack of self-awareness is a problem that is affecting not only our friendships, but her friendships with many other people as well? I care about her a lot, so I want to see if there is a way to bring this issue to light without hurting her feelings.
– doggone disappointed
Dear Disappointed: Repeat after me: “I care about you. I care about your dog too. But this relationship is taking over your life now, and I feel rejected and neglected. Your lack of self-awareness is a problem.” Which is affecting our friendship.”
I have to say you already know what to say. Speak for yourself (not other people), and understand that telling this truth may upset her or hurt her feelings.
Very long friendships can sometimes escape true course correction.
Dear Amy: “Past Completed” reported that three bulls from his past approached him for forgiveness.
In your response, you mentioned that you believed the pandemic had prompted many to consider their actions.
It happens to me that a lot of people are using the pandemic as an excuse for all kinds of things.
How long do you think this will continue?
Dear Surprise: I plan on keeping it for as long as possible.
(You can email Amy Dickinson at firstname.lastname@example.org or send a letter to Ask Amy, PO Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068. You can also follow her on Twitter. @askingamy Or Facebook.)
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