My girlfriend and I survived going to different schools, living in different cities.
We both grew up in relatively traditional families, and think it’s important to live together for at least six months before marrying. I’ve been working for 12 months, she doesn’t finish school until April, and so we planned moving in together in 2014, in the same city as my job.
However, her mom was diagnosed with a severe cancer. I’ve saved enough money for a ring and small wedding, or a down payment on a small house. I’ve also learned that I may lose my job in the New Year due to cutbacks.
It took me a year to get this job, as it’s very competitive and requires extensive specific experience.
My girlfriend has repeatedly said that I pose a lot of logic but don’t understand how women think.
Do I use the money I saved to buy a ring and get married while there’s a chance for her mom to attend the wedding?
Or, buy a house (but not live together until her mom passes), or rent an apartment while seeking new employment in the city she and her mom live in?
It’s not your dilemma, alone. Talk to your girlfriend openly, but do more listening than logic posing. It’s her mother, as well as her future, too.
She may not want to move away while her mom’s ill and undergoing treatments.
She may not be able to handle wedding plans during this time... OR she may want her mom to see her get married.
Marriage calls for a lot of mutual decisions, and a lot of compromises. Work this out together.
My daughter (27) and I have always had a roller coaster relationship. She’s NOT interested in counselling. I get some, off and on.
Recently she had a beautiful baby with a homeless man (28) she met a year ago. She’s looking after the baby and household, and going back to school part-time in January. He contributes his welfare cheque and helps with the baby.
He is NOT interested in working.
He cheated on her when she was three-months pregnant and said it was her fault. He says extremely hurtful things when mad and leaves for a couple of nights monthly, when they fight.
I’ve witnessed them physically struggle with each other. Recently, I was on the phone with her as he was packing again… I heard struggling. This time, I hung up and phoned the cops.
Now child welfare authorities are involved and my daughter blames me.
She’s texting with me again but says to never get involved in her life again, because I made it hell now.
I know I did the right thing by protecting her. I also believe that she’ll come around, as she’s truly a great mom, while he’s not marriageable/boyfriend material.
Yet, why do I feel so guilty?
Cop Calling Mom
Their dysfunctional relationship highlights your own mother-daughter struggle over years, since her major adult choices are so contrary to your own.
But the baby’s the central issue here. You had a moral and legal responsibility to report a physical struggle in which the child, as well as its mother, could’ve been at risk.
Keep close contact with your daughter and help her where you can. She and the child need your support. But the longer you’re verbally critical of this man, the more she’ll stick with him.
Avoid gratuitous negative comments, but be prepared to intervene when necessary.
FEEDBACK Regarding the mom-to-be whose husband insists he won’t/can’t change diapers (Dec. 3):
Reader – “The diaper piece had me laughing aloud. I too have trouble with smells and visuals, and been bad-smell sensitive my whole life.
“While I never said no diapers, I warned my partner that there’d be drama which I'd struggle to keep in check.
“Well, after two-plus years of changing diapers daily, the vomiting reaction didn’t go away, but it became less frequent.
“I kept a bucket or bag nearby when opening "the package." Vicks Vapo-rub under the nose helped, and loved ones got a kick out of my dramatic retching audibles (they’re still laughing five years later). You do what you have to do....”
Ellie – Good for you! On behalf of those of us who don’t actually retch, trust me, the joy in diapering only comes after the clean up, when a child giggles and smiles up at you. THAT’S bonding.
Tip of the day:
Major couple decisions require open discussion and mutual flexibility, more than just logic.