Abby 12-1-13

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

Location hidden

#1 Dec 1, 2013
DEAR ABBY: I am ready to explode. My father-in-law dotes on my 16-year-old daughter, who is his only grandchild. The biggest issue, aside from his overspending, is that he takes her to and from school every day and then expects to stay and visit.

I have neither the time nor the inclination to sit and chitchat with him about the same old stuff over and over. My husband doesn't want to be involved.(He doesn't get home until after his father has left, anyway.) It would probably end up in a nasty fight.

I want to politely make "Dad" understand that he doesn't need to come in every single day. I know he will think we are being negative or against him personally, and from past events, I don't want to come across in this manner. Please help.-- TOO MUCH OF A "GOOD" THING IN PENNSYLVANIA

DEAR TOO MUCH: Obviously, your father-in-law doesn't have enough going on in his life to fill his time. Things won't change until you manage to set some boundaries.

It would not be "negative against him" if you had to go out and run errands or your daughter had to do homework after she gets home from school. It would also not be negative, since you don't have time to sit and chat, to ask him to pitch in and help with the chores.

You might also suggest that he do some volunteer work to fill his time. But you will have to schedule a time for him to feel welcome -- perhaps a Sunday dinner -- when your husband is home and can help to entertain his father.

DEAR ABBY: We are the parents of two adult children. We have always lived below our means so we could save for college expenses and retirement. Now that our two sons have finished college (with no debt), we splurged and purchased two luxury vehicles.

Our oldest son, "Sam," lives in another state but comes into town for business and pleasure, and when he does, he wants to borrow one of our cars. Although Sam has a good driving record, we are hesitant to loan him one of them. He is no longer on our car policy and can well afford to rent a car.

Sam is upset with us and says from now on he will stay with friends. I offered to share the rental expense, but my husband said Sam is an adult now and responsible for his own expenses. Are we being unreasonable by not letting him borrow one of our cars?-- CONFLICTED IN DALLAS

DEAR CONFLICTED: You have been generous with your children. Many students finish college with a mountain of debt. It appears that Sam is less interested in what you have done for him than what you will do. He's acting like a spoiled brat, and I hope you will stick to your guns because your husband is right.

DEAR ABBY: Over many years of travel in the U.S. and Europe, I have collected postcards picturing the main sights. Now it is time to toss the trip memorabilia, but the cards are in pristine condition. Any suggestion as to what could be done with them?-- GLOBETROTTER OUT WEST

DEAR GLOBETROTTER: If there are schools in your area that offer art classes to the students, you might be able to donate the postcards as material to be used in art projects. Or contact nearby senior centers and ask if they would like to have them to be used for discussion groups or art classes.(They would be wonderful for decoupage projects.)
boundary painter

Waco, TX

#2 Dec 1, 2013
LW1 could easily put that father-in-law,as well as
the daughter, to work helping get the house maintenance caught up. Thank him for helping, too.
This lemon can easily be made into lemonade.

LW2 is not giving the lone star state a bad name by
telling Sam to get a Rent-a-Car. He's old enough to do that.

LW3 got a good answer.
Cass

Rancho Cucamonga, CA

#3 Dec 1, 2013
LW1 - "FIL, I have things to do. I don't have time to chat. I am sorry."

P.S. How far is the high school that a 16yo needs to be taken to school and picked up?

LW2 - Why, exactly, won't you let your son borrow your car when he visits? I am just curious as he11. You say he has a good driving record. He is not on your policy, but does your policy prohibit anyone not on it from driving your car?

I don't think your son is upset about the money for the rental. He is upset that you don't trust him to drive your "luxury vehicle" and not get into a car accident.

LW3 - When it's time to throw out the junk, throw it out. If it's in good shape, donate it. Pack up your cards in a box and take it to Goodwill. They may be able to sell them for a penny a card, or they will decide the stuff is not sellable, and they will recycle them.

Since: Dec 09

Smalltown, Colorado

#4 Dec 1, 2013
LW2 - If your son is in his 20's, the insurance company will not be happy if he wrecks your car and is not on your policy. Insurance for that age group of men is not cheap. Maybe he has his own insurance that would cover him driving your car. Otherwise, he can just rent one.

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

Location hidden

#5 Dec 1, 2013
Shari23 wrote:
LW2 - If your son is in his 20's, the insurance company will not be happy if he wrecks your car and is not on your policy. Insurance for that age group of men is not cheap. Maybe he has his own insurance that would cover him driving your car. Otherwise, he can just rent one.
If he is driving the parents car with their permission on a random occasional basis and does not reside with them, their insurance will cover him as a permissible driver. His own auto policy may also cover him depending on the language of the policy.
Julie

Chicago, IL

#6 Dec 1, 2013
LW1: WHOOOAAA!!! Your FIL isn't taking your daughter to and from school every day unless you and your husband allow it. And you're obviously allowing it because it saves you time/money/hassle. You don't want to "chit-chat" with him, because you want him to provide this service with absolutely no pay-back.

Lady, you sound like a real POS. Your husband, too. F you.
Cass

Rancho Cucamonga, CA

#7 Dec 1, 2013
Julie wrote:
LW1: WHOOOAAA!!! Your FIL isn't taking your daughter to and from school every day unless you and your husband allow it. And you're obviously allowing it because it saves you time/money/hassle. You don't want to "chit-chat" with him, because you want him to provide this service with absolutely no pay-back.
Lady, you sound like a real POS. Your husband, too. F you.
Bad holidays with the family? I sympathize.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#8 Dec 1, 2013
LW2: I could not imagine my parents not letting me drive their car unless they would be inconvenienced y not having access to the car at the same time I was using it. I ave the same attitude in reverse. The idea that they should needlessly spend money on something I can provide is foreign to me. Does LW tell son to stop at the grocery store too and pick up what he needs during the visit? To me, feeding guests would negatively affect me more than using my car.
Stina2

Saint Petersburg, FL

#9 Dec 2, 2013
Julie wrote:
LW1: WHOOOAAA!!! Your FIL isn't taking your daughter to and from school every day unless you and your husband allow it. And you're obviously allowing it because it saves you time/money/hassle. You don't want to "chit-chat" with him, because you want him to provide this service with absolutely no pay-back.
Lady, you sound like a real POS. Your husband, too. F you.
This is what I was thinking. And LW is obviously home during the day, so why doesn't she pick up her own kid??? She's using FIL as a taxi service.
I know how it can be. My parents pick up my kid on certain days, I work long days and then it takes me a half hour to leave their house when I am picking my daughter up. But there are also times I say that we can't stay and chat because we have to go to "XYZ" or whatever and they get it.
But, even when I am tired, I look it as a good thing that we get to see each other and visit for a few. And they are doing me a huge favor.

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