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“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Braidwood, IL

#1 Mar 6, 2014
DEAR AMY: My boyfriend has a problem -- his ex-wife.

He and his family have owned a farm for over a century. During his divorce, he agreed to let his ex-wife have access to the barn so she could continue to care for her animals. That's OK, I guess. But here is the problem: He got custody of his two teenage daughters.

His ex-wife stops by the farm every day and feels that because her girls are there, she can come and go in the house as she pleases.

She doesn't even knock on the door. To top it off, she still has clothes in his closet. We are talking years after the divorce! I say the clothes have to go!

This makes it nearly impossible for me to have a relationship with him at his place.

He says he has asked her to keep her distance, but I say it's time he take action, as she is just going to use this as another power play to squeeze me out.

I need your help/advice.-- Gritting my Teeth

DEAR GRITTING: To review: You are the girlfriend. You're talking about his house, his barn, his kids and his ex-wife.

If the children live with him and his ex is on the property every day, then it seems rational that she would come and go freely; after all, that is the setup they have established.

If he wanted things to be different, they would be different For instance, his ex-wife's clothes would have been packed in bins and stacked in the barn long ago. Or he would have established and enforced a "knock first" policy regarding her visits to the house.

The decision you need to make is about you. Can you tolerate being a part of this household, just as it is -- because this seems to be working for your guy. When it stops working for him, he will take steps to change it.

DEAR AMY: I'm in high school. We have been friends with "Bill" since freshman year. He used to be funny, kind and easygoing. He had a great personality until recently, when his mother passed away from cancer.

From that day on, he gradually became ignorant and rude. As the days pass, more and more people have begun to notice his attitude and he is less liked throughout the school.

He claims he acts this way as a result of his mother's death, and to fill the void he now has.

How can we confront him about his attitude without it being a bad situation and bringing back bad memories?-- Want Our Friend Back

DEAR WANT: Your friend's world has been rocked, and he has changed because of it. You can probably imagine that he misses his mother every day. But can you also imagine that his life has been completely altered? For instance, if he has a grieving father and siblings at home, he has lost much more than one parent. All of his relationships have changed.

After a loss like this, it is common for people to act out in socially challenging ways (acting angry or depressed). You can help your friend by not dumping him now that he needs you. It sounds like he is willing to talk about his situation, so encourage him to talk about it. Be in his corner, even if you don't always know what to say. If he acts like a jerk, call him on it (that's what friends do), but don't give up on him.

Your school's counselor can be helpful to all of you. I hope you will be a good friend and set up a meeting to talk.

DEAR AMY: "Not on Vacation" reported that her parents had treated her and her sister and their families to a nice vacation at a tropical time share. When the mother declined to take them this year because of a fight, you suggested that the sisters respond to her vacation emails by sending a passive-aggressive postcard.

You blew it.-- Hate Passive Aggression

DEAR HATE: Readers are upset that I didn't call out these sisters for being selfish. But I read this query differently.

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me! Charlie

#2 Mar 6, 2014
1 ...this as another power play to squeeze me out. <snip!>

This relationship is doomed. You resent the kids, animals, and the X.

2 Lamy is right, He is lucky he has friends, and someday he will realize that. But for now, just hang in his corner, you're doing more than you realize.

3 Excuse me, but WE decide when Lamy has blown it, not you!
Cass

Claremont, CA

#3 Mar 6, 2014
LW1 - You need to move on. He may be divorced on paper, and he may not be sleeping with his wife, but she is still very much a part of his life. If you can't accept that, you need to get out of this relationship.

LW2 - "My teenage friend lost his mother, and he is not fun to be around any more. Should we confront him and tell him how upsetting it is to us that he is not cracking jokes all the time? We are not amused!"

Since: Aug 08

Location hidden

#4 Mar 6, 2014
LW1: Good luck with that.

LW2: It sounds like you have already confronted him if he claims he acts this way as a result of his mother’s death and to fill the void he now has. So, I’m not sure you are asking Amy how you confront him. A change in attitude can’t be imposed from the outside.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Melrose Park, IL

#5 Mar 6, 2014
1- Lamy's right, sounds like YOU are the third wheel in this relationship. Deal with things as is or move on

2- Gee, forgive the poor soul for not being a fuzzy ball of sunshine after the death of his mother
blunt advice

Morris Plains, NJ

#6 Mar 6, 2014
1. It you can't deal with your boyfriends baggage then it is time to move on.
2. This may hard for a teenager to comprehend but the world does not revolve around entertaining you. Some things you can do include...Ask your mom's (or do it yourself) to help prepare some home cooked meals for his family, coordinate a fundraiser in his mother's honor, have some of the girls you know offer to babysit younger siblings, those who drive can do some pick ups and drop offs for after school activities, offer a shoulder for him to cry on.......These are things that real friends do to help out in time if need. Who knows, you may even get some personal satisfaction in helping another human and also in upgrading your status as a fair weather friend to a real friend.

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me! Charlie

#7 Mar 6, 2014
LW2 I did not get the impression that the lw was self absorbed. I read it as the kids attitude has changed completely, to a total debbie downer, and the LW was alarmed at that, not that it was making him boring.

I picture where the other kids are laughing over something, this guy finds the negative in it, and he does it alot. This alarms the LW, and it is concern for the guy, not conceit that is prompting the letter.

Since: Mar 09

Hollywood, FL

#8 Mar 6, 2014
RACE wrote:
LW2 I did not get the impression that the lw was self absorbed. I read it as the kids attitude has changed completely, to a total debbie downer, and the LW was alarmed at that, not that it was making him boring.
I picture where the other kids are laughing over something, this guy finds the negative in it, and he does it alot. This alarms the LW, and it is concern for the guy, not conceit that is prompting the letter.
This is how I read it too. I don't think the LW lacks understanding that his friend has gone through a tragedy, but rather how the friends can help.

Since: Mar 09

Hollywood, FL

#9 Mar 6, 2014
L1: It's possible that a wake-up call (potentially losing his girlfriend) could prompt the guy to change the situation. But the LW needs to be prepared to walk away, too, if things DON'T change and she can't deal with it. I wouldn't want to either so I understand, but the boyfriend might be oblivious.

Toj

“Where is Everyone?”

Since: Jul 12

Location hidden

#10 Mar 6, 2014
L1: Don't get into a relationship where you want to change the person you picked. Seriously. Move on.

L2: Did you tell him that if he ever needs to talk that you'll be there? Did you all tell him you're there for support? Give him space for now. He's at the anger stage, obviously, of the grieving process.

L3: And this surprises you?

“The two baby belly, please!”

Since: Sep 09

Evanston IL

#11 Mar 6, 2014
LW1: I think Lamy got this wrong. Of course it's still working for him! There have been no consequences for this set-up that have been a problem for him. Now it's a problem, and if he cares at all about how the LW feels, he will set some boundaries.

Yes, the LW will have to accept the daily visits but it is not acceptable that this woman's clothes are still in his closet and if the LW is living there (which is hard to determine by how she wrote the letter) NO WAY should the ex be allowed to just walk in whenever she feels like it. Her children may invite her in, but her access inside the house should be limited to common rooms, just like any other guest.

It's like when I was dating Dickie. I was a smoker and had never had a consequence to it that I couldn't deal with. I didn't mind some of the more extreme places in which I had to smoke (like the back of a cruising casino boat in the middle of winter in a thin polyester uniform without a coat) or having the window down in the car during winter. I didn't even notice that my hair and clothes smelled. I was perfectly happy smoking, that was until Dickie refused to kiss me one day because I "tasted like an ashtray." Here, finally, was a consequence of my smoking that I couldn't handle, and I quit within the month. All I need was the right motivation.

This guy is perfectly happy with the way things are because he's never had a motivation to change them. His girlfriend's displeasure with the current situation should be that motivation if he cares about her enough.

LW2: You and your friends need to read up on the grieving process. This boy is going through hell and needs his friends to be supportive, not constantly reminding him that he's a buzz kill.

LW3: This rehash needs a tropical island timeshare. It can send us pictures.
boundary painter

Waco, TX

#12 Mar 6, 2014
Suggest LW1 step back from the situation. If those girls want to see their mother and that farm is not LW1's, what else can she do?

Suggest LW2 simply be polite to Bill until he wants to talk. He probably has more on his mind than LW2 knows.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Melrose Park, IL

#13 Mar 6, 2014
squishymama wrote:
and if the LW is living there (which is hard to determine by how she wrote the letter)
I thought it was clear they aren't living together

"This makes it nearly impossible to have a relationship with him at his place."

Toj

“Where is Everyone?”

Since: Jul 12

Location hidden

#14 Mar 6, 2014
edogxxx wrote:
<quoted text>
I thought it was clear they aren't living together
"This makes it nearly impossible to have a relationship with him at his place."
Not only that, but also she is girlfriend status, not fiance status. To bring up her concerns about it would be difficult but doable. I can't see anything beyond that.
boundary painter

Waco, TX

#15 Mar 6, 2014
Who wants to play "Glance into the Future" on LW1:

After four months, LW1:

(a) told her boyfriend to choose between her and the ex-wife, and he sighed a sigh of relief, as he told her, he'd reconciled with his ex-wife.
(b) met another man who had moe time to devote to her, and let the boyfiend go on to do with the farm and ex-wife as he pleased.
(c) had a cat fight with the ex-wife and won
(d) had a cat fight with the ex-wife--and lost
or
(e) other

“The two baby belly, please!”

Since: Sep 09

Evanston IL

#16 Mar 6, 2014
edogxxx wrote:
<quoted text>
I thought it was clear they aren't living together
"This makes it nearly impossible to have a relationship with him at his place."
Well, she knows an awful lot about what goes on at the house, so either she lives there or spends a lot of time there.

And I don't think it's out of line for her to ask, nay demand, that her time with her boyfriend be uninterruped by an ex just walking in on them whenever she feels like it. Would you tolerate that?

Toj

“Where is Everyone?”

Since: Jul 12

Location hidden

#17 Mar 6, 2014
squishymama wrote:
<quoted text>
Well, she knows an awful lot about what goes on at the house, so either she lives there or spends a lot of time there.
And I don't think it's out of line for her to ask, nay demand, that her time with her boyfriend be uninterruped by an ex just walking in on them whenever she feels like it. Would you tolerate that?
I wouldn't tolerate it and I would probably walk away. Some people can deal with the ex being very involved b/c of the kids. Not sure I could, although each situation is different.

Toj

“Where is Everyone?”

Since: Jul 12

Location hidden

#18 Mar 6, 2014
boundary painter wrote:
Who wants to play "Glance into the Future" on LW1:
After four months, LW1:
(a) told her boyfriend to choose between her and the ex-wife, and he sighed a sigh of relief, as he told her, he'd reconciled with his ex-wife.
(b) met another man who had moe time to devote to her, and let the boyfiend go on to do with the farm and ex-wife as he pleased.
(c) had a cat fight with the ex-wife and won
(d) had a cat fight with the ex-wife--and lost
or
(e) other
(e) Other. One day the LW waits in the stables for the ex-wife, hiding. The LW spooks the horse at the "right" moment and the horse stomps and kills the ex-wife. Problem solved.:D

Since: Aug 08

Location hidden

#19 Mar 6, 2014
boundary painter wrote:
Who wants to play "Glance into the Future" on LW1:
After four months, LW1:
(a) told her boyfriend to choose between her and the ex-wife, and he sighed a sigh of relief, as he told her, he'd reconciled with his ex-wife.
(b) met another man who had moe time to devote to her, and let the boyfiend go on to do with the farm and ex-wife as he pleased.
(c) had a cat fight with the ex-wife and won
(d) had a cat fight with the ex-wife--and lost
or
(e) other
E) "Accidentally" left the barn door open and all the ex's animals escaped, never to return, along with the ex.

Since: Aug 08

Location hidden

#20 Mar 6, 2014
That's what the LW gets for using "farmers only" dating website instead of match dot com.

Not sure if you guys get that commercial by you, but we do. It's an actual dating website for farmers. The commercials are corny as all eff.

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