My son, 19, is in school and has been dating his girlfriend for three years. She’s very sweet and nice with me.
She’s also good with little children, which I like, because my husband and I have a toddler daughter (second marriage).
We’re planning a winter break “family vacation.”
Last year my son joined us, but spent so much time on the phone with his girlfriend and missing her, that it was annoying.
We’re thinking of inviting the girlfriend along too, and paying for two rooms.
Is it wrong for us to openly support my son and his girlfriend sleeping together even though we’re already sure that they do?
Showing your son the desire for him and his girlfriend to be part of this trip, is what “family” is all about.
Discuss expectations and concerns with both of them. Even if you know that they’ve had sex, it’s not the same as sharing a bed over a week’s time.
Ask the girl separately if she’s comfortable with that arrangement. Ask your son if he can handle it without feeling awkward.
Tell both of them that you expect them to join you for meals, spend time with his sister, do activities offered at the venue, etc.
Then call the girl’s mother and ask her if she approves the plan. If not, he’ll have to accept the week away without her.
My apartment-building neighbours of six months have a small child who’s constantly screaming, as are the parents.
I’ve complained a couple of times, but feel that nothing’s going to be done.
I can hear their child from my bedroom with the door closed, though only my living room wall is next to their apartment.
I’ve debated asking my landlord to insulate my living room wall for sound, (is that unreasonable?) or move me to another floor without cost or rent increase.
I’ve told the parents in person that their child needs to cut the shrill screaming.
There are only two families with kids on my floor.
They should consider who’s already living here before moving families with small children onto a floor.
I have to crank up my TV or I cannot hear anything over their child’s screams. The first three months I was only getting four hours of sleep.
I feel badly saying this, but I’d be happy if they evicted them, or at least moved them.
What a sad world we’d live in if parents with colicky babies and exuberant youngsters could be evicted on one neighbour’s complaint.
My dear friend had a son who was a “screamer.” It had to do with his “energy,” his parents were told. He outgrew the screaming by age five, after he first put on hockey skates and shot wildly across a rink.
He remained an athlete the rest of his too-short life, having died at 44, in a paragliding accident.
He was beloved by family and described as “the kindest of humans” by his paragliding friends who said he was always concerned about others’ safety.
Yes, dear reader, sleepless nights are difficult to bear.
Ear plugs and white-noise machines can help, and insulation, if possible, seems a good idea.
Perhaps splitting the insulating cost would be acceptable to your landlord and you.
About the screaming parents: The landlord should speak to them about any building rules or local by-laws regarding their own noise and disturbances, which they can control.
Their screaming habit also affects their innocent child.
An acquaintance through mutual friends only initiates contact when she needs information. She’ll interrupt an answer to redirect the topic to herself or her children.
I’ve avoided her in group situations, answered questions minimally, but kept it friendly and light.
I’ve since learned that our whole group feels the same way.
We’ve started not inviting her, but keeping get-togethers quiet to not make her feel left out.
It seems silly to sneak around town, not share pictures on social media, etc.
How do we gracefully exit this relationship?
Someone has to have the courage to speak up, gently. Otherwise, this is schoolyard-style ostracism.
You’ve self-elected to care, so next time she asks a question, respond that it’s an uncomfortable dialogue when she doesn’t show any interest in you as a person.
Don’t hide. Tell her there’s a better approach. If she can’t or won’t change, that’s then her choice.
Tip of the day:
When travelling with a teenage couple, parents and teens need to be open about their expectations and concerns.