“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Wilmington, IL

#1 Oct 3, 2013
DEAR AMY: I am 33, married with a 4-year-old son. My mother has always been distant and controlling. She shuts down if things don't go her way. She tries to undermine or sabotage family events to exert her control. She also makes bigoted comments and sometimes drinks to excess. She then plays innocent and claims I am attacking her.

I learned early on that I will never have a loving mother-daughter bond, but now I don't know if we can even be in the same room.

Recently, on a family vacation, my parents took my son and me to a restaurant. We waited 90 minutes for a table. While we were waiting, my son had a little "accident." I decided I would take him home, quickly change his clothes and come back. I told my parents it would take a half-hour and that they should stay and have appetizers, and we would be back.

They got up and followed us out. I begged them to stay. They didn't listen.

I said I feel they don't respect me or my son. They got defensive. My mother hasn't spoken to me since.

The next morning, I packed up my son and left. We were supposed to be there for four more days.

Did I overreact, or was I justified in possibly severing my relationship with my mother? I felt a twinge of guilt for leaving after my parents planned and paid for this vacation to spend time with their grandson.-- Confused Mom

DEAR MOM: Your folks left the restaurant, and you retaliated by leaving forever. The way you describe your mother, this sounds like something she would do. So yes, I think you did overreact to this.

I assume your choice was influenced by a lifetime of feeling off-kilter by your relationship with your folks. They wrote the script that you are now following. The fact that you are now a parent is bringing all of this to a boiling point, but it also presents opportunities for you to forge a more balanced relationship.

You may gain some insight by reading "Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life" by Susan Forward and Craig Buck (2002, Bantam).

DEAR AMY: I'm a 60-year-old widower. My wife died in early 2013. We were married for more than 30 years. Our marriage was incredibly blessed.

We raised her two sons from a previous marriage (we did not have additional children). My stepsons are now in their 40s. I have three grandkids, ages 10 to 14. They are great kids. A grandchild is named after me.

I'm now dating and plan to ask my stepsons if I can bring a companion to family holiday functions. I'm not asking for an immediate response from them, knowing they need time to consider.

I'll honor their response -- I won't make threats if they deny my requests. I don't want to give control of my remaining life to my stepsons. However I realize the complex task the parents have to discuss the subject with the grandchildren.

How should I handle the sensitive issue?-- Widower

DEAR WIDOWER: You are proposing to bring a companion to celebrate the first holiday season since your late wife's death. You don't mention if your stepsons are aware that you are dating anyone. You can let them know you're seeing someone and see if they offer an invitation -- but don't ask them to invite her.

My honest reaction is that it might be best for everyone if you waited until after the holidays to bring your companion around and introduce her to the rest of the family.

DEAR AMY: I was struck by the letter from "Acting Foolish." He is a stepfather who is insulted that the daughter he raised from childhood has chosen her biological father to walk her down the aisle. I went to a wedding where the family dealt with this by having the bio dad walk the bride halfway down the aisle and the stepfather the rest of the way. It was beautiful.-- Wedding Guest

DEAR GUEST: If this is what the bride wants to do, I think it's a neat solution.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Wilmington, IL

#2 Oct 3, 2013
1- The apple didn't fall far from the tree. And you were on vacation, how could you have run home and back within a half hour??

2- She died a few months ago and you want to bring a new woman around family gatherings?!? Way to honor your 30 yr marriage. You are a total @zz!

3- Both my sisters were walked down the aisle by uncles. Drama avoided.

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

Location hidden

#3 Oct 3, 2013
1. Agree with Dog that the apple didn't fall far from the tree. I feel sorry for the 4 year old.

2.It may not be too soon to be dating but it is not cool to have a new person for teh first set of holidays. That is not letting step sons control, that is tact and consideration.
3.I don't care.

“On Deck”

Since: Aug 08

French Polynesia

#4 Oct 3, 2013
L1. There is no way I would ever wait 90 minutes for a table at any restaurant.
Their food isn't that good.

L2. If you have to ask, then the answer is no.

“The two baby belly, please!”

Since: Sep 09

Evanston IL

#5 Oct 3, 2013
LW1: Drama drama drama and it is not a monologue. Stop playing her game.

LW2: 30 blessed years and you couldn't wait ONE to bring a new woman to the holidays?

LW3: Why the f*ck are you still running this tired-azz rehash, Amy? You must have some other rehash stinkin' up your office. Why don't you run that?

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

Location hidden

#6 Oct 3, 2013
Re Ltr 3 repeats.

In a print edition, it is necessary to consider , i.e., ill, column inches. These letter s look like space fillers. I don't know if that is a consideration with electronic media.

Anyone with publishing background have any ideas?

Toj

“Equality”

Since: Jul 12

Location hidden

#7 Oct 3, 2013
L1: Agree with Squishy.

L2: Perhaps you missed your wife so much and had such a great marriage that you wanted someone in your life right away. However, it's too early to ask everyone else to adjust. Wait a bit.

L3: Wonderful.(rolling eyes)

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me!

#8 Oct 3, 2013
Team everyone, even LC!

Since: Feb 10

Location hidden

#9 Oct 3, 2013
Toj wrote:
L1: Agree with Squishy.
L2: Perhaps you missed your wife so much and had such a great marriage that you wanted someone in your life right away. However, it's too early to ask everyone else to adjust. Wait a bit.
L3: Wonderful.(rolling eyes)
Just what I was thinking, especially L2.
Kuuipo

Monterey, CA

#10 Oct 3, 2013
loose cannon wrote:
L1. There is no way I would ever wait 90 minutes for a table at any restaurant.
Their food isn't that good.
Ditto. If they can't seat me in 15 minutes or less, I'll find another place to eat. And she has a 4-year-old? You know he would have been fine with a Happy Meal.
Kuuipo

Monterey, CA

#11 Oct 3, 2013
LW1: It takes two to play this game. Do not engage. Learn to be as neutral as possible. You can't change other people, but you can change how you react to them.

LW2: What PEllen and Toj said. It's OK that you are dating, but I'd wait a while before introducing a new woman to your stepsons.

LW3: I hope the original LW works this out.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Wilmington, IL

#12 Oct 3, 2013
Kuuipo wrote:
It's OK that you are dating
I don't think that it is. His wife of THIRTY years just died a few months ago. He sounds like a pathetic loser that can't stand to be alone. There is nothing "OK" about that.
cheluzal

Plant City, FL

#13 Oct 3, 2013
1: This one isolated incident seems overreacted, but LW might have just reached her breaking point. Read the first part and ask why you would willingly spend time with someone like that? Gross.

2: I'm convinced guys are unable to be alone. So sad.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#14 Oct 3, 2013
Lw1: This is a piss poor example of bad mom. What are you gonna tell us next? That she was so horrible that she changed his diaper for you? What a witch. If this story is the worst you csn do, I'm not so sure mom is the problem.

Lw2: what most everyone else said. This is their first holiday without mom.

Lw3: who cares
Kuuipo

Monterey, CA

#15 Oct 3, 2013
edogxxx wrote:
<quoted text>
I don't think that it is. His wife of THIRTY years just died a few months ago. He sounds like a pathetic loser that can't stand to be alone. There is nothing "OK" about that.
I don't see a problem. My mom started dating a few months after my dad passed and they were married that long. He died young after a long illness.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Brooklyn, NY

#20 Oct 4, 2013
Kuuipo wrote:
<quoted text>
I don't see a problem. My mom started dating a few months after my dad passed and they were married that long. He died young after a long illness.
Sounds like she couldn't wait
Kuuipo

Monterey, CA

#21 Oct 4, 2013
edogxxx wrote:
<quoted text>
Sounds like she couldn't wait
You weren't there and you didn't see how she cared for him when he was sick, nor how distraught she was when he passed. I have no doubt whatsoever that she loved him with everything she had. The same could easily be true for LW. But life goes on. It is healthy to move forward and not stay stuck in grief for years.

Toj

“Equality”

Since: Jul 12

Location hidden

#22 Oct 4, 2013
Kuuipo wrote:
<quoted text>
You weren't there and you didn't see how she cared for him when he was sick, nor how distraught she was when he passed. I have no doubt whatsoever that she loved him with everything she had. The same could easily be true for LW. But life goes on. It is healthy to move forward and not stay stuck in grief for years.
I know I'm stating the obvious, but Edog isn't exactly a sensitive person nor does he know what empathy means.

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