I'm very ashamed of the fact that I grew up poor and my parents are still poor. My boyfriend of six months (we're mid-20s) is attending his work function, which is held in my hometown. He's invited me to join him and stay an extra bit of time to see my family/friends.
I’d love to have him stay at either of my parents’ places for the extra time we'll be in town, but my one parent lives in an apartment, which is literally in the ghetto. I can't sleep at night thinking that I have to bring him there for a visit, or that I can't offer somewhere for us to stay for a few nights in my home city.
I’m not close with my other parent; we have a strained relationship, he puts me down. I’m embarrassed to have my boyfriend stay with my family, and embarrassed to stay in a hotel and avoid my families' homes. I don't know how to make this situation work.
I'd really like to have my family meet him, but I just can't bare the shame of poverty.
There is no shame to poverty in your family… their circumstances were not of your making, nor in your control. You’ve clearly risen above it from your own efforts, and your work ethic has obviously brought you to a higher standard of living.
A decent boyfriend with whom you share intimacy and caring should be someone you can trust to not put you down, either for your more estranged parent, or for your closer parent’s neighbourhood.
Do what’s natural. If it’s uncomfortable for you to stay there, take a hotel room for the two of you, but do visit that parent, go out and spend time together, do NOT show embarrassment.
Your boyfriend already knows your values, your personal lifestyle, and your goals for the future. A negative attitude towards your parents because of their financial situation could cause him to think less of you, not them.
My husband and I are in our eighth year of marriage. His first wife passed away a number of years ago. I’d never been married before. I moved to the city with the understanding agreed between us that we’d sell the family home where they’d raised their children and purchase something smaller as our home. This hasn’t happened.
Also, despite his gentle soul, my husband’s a hoarder. I can't move around or enjoy the home at all. It seems to create depression for me and likely for him, although he’d never admit it.
I did some painting when I first came here, believing when he said he was only in the midst of some construction and all would be tidied up soon.
This hasn’t happened, nor does it appear that it ever will. He always says it’ll get better, but it never does. I feel trapped and helpless.
Get informed and counseled about living with a hoarder, and what potential there is for treating his obsession. You need to know what’s a realistic outcome, IF you can get him into a therapy program himself, usually based on behavior modification strategies.
Once you know the odds, you can assess the situation, and again may need professional guidance. You’ll need to ask yourself how much you love this “gentle soul” and how much lack of change you can bear, if he doesn’t change to the degree you want.
For two years this boy fancied me, and this year I liked him too. He broke up my ex-boyfriend, and me then stopped talking to me. We became friends again and he told me how much he still loved me. I felt the same way but he said we couldn’t go out because of our friendship.
Recently, at a party, we kissed. Now he won’t talk to me even though he tells his friends how much he still loves me. And he stares at me. I still like him, so what should I do?
Confused In England
He’s a messed-up bloke who doesn’t know how to deal with his feelings. Stay friendly but chill, don’t expect more, and let him try to figure out how to handle his own feelings.
But don’t push for a romance with a guy who’s so up and down. Give him time to learn how to go after what he wants.
Tip of the day:
No matter what you come from, your successes partly came from what, and from whom, you learned.