How come you never seem to get on anybody’s case about their morals?
It’s not just you - “anything goes” is now generally the way of the world. How many more slutty, stupid, knocked-up girls are you going to send to “counselling” and how many more deadbeat, lowlife, shag’em-and-run dads are you going to let off as a lost cause?
What’s wrong with standing up for the idea that once you’ve got kids there are no more “boyfriends” or “girlfriends,” no more sleepovers or casual get-togethers with strangers moving in and out of a kid’s life?
What’s wrong with telling these folks that they’re rotten at making choices and are therefore prohibited from making any more?
- Just Curious
While you’d rather lock the barn door after the horse is gone, than lead it to safety, I take a different approach.
By the time people write me, their morals are the secondary issue – though I agree that many have made poor choices in the past. But they’re asking me about specific problems with current relationships.
I believe I’m consistent in advising parents, that their children are their first responsibility, and any new “boyfriends” and “girlfriends” need to respect that the stability and well-being of their children is a priority.
As for your labeling all single Moms “slutty, stupid,” etc., and all non-custodial Dads as “lowlife” I can’t see what positive moral good comes from dismissive judgment other than making you feel smug and superior.
I guess you’ve never made a mistake.
My older brother and I are both retired and live in different cities, so we see each other only once or twice a year.
He and I are on opposite ends of the spectrum as far as political views, philosophy, treatment of the underprivileged etc. This could lead to interesting conversations if it weren’t for his always raising these issues in an extreme manner.
For example his way of dealing with criminals is to "line them up and shoot them." Any kind of reasoning falls on deaf ears.
My wife and I find these comments and views upsetting and he knows where we stand.
The easy solution would be to not visit each other, but we're not getting younger and both he and I wouldn’t want that, because we do love each other. If he were a smoker I’d say, “We’d love to have you visit us, but you must refrain from smoking in our presence" and I’m sure he’d respect that request.
Could I use the same argument? We suspect he might react by saying, "this is a free country and I can say what I want" (I’m speaking from experience).
- Brothers’ Dilemma
The positive note here is that you know that you and your brother love each other.
But, this “Big Brother” still likes teasing his younger brother just as he must’ve done in the past, and he delights in getting a reaction.
You need to tell him – gently but firmly – that you’re equal grownups now, he’s entitled to his opinions, but they interfere with you wanting to get together in a relaxed way.
Set up a so-called “rule” about forbidden topics: politics, race, religion. It may be a free country but you don’t have to listen to all views.
If he persists in needling you, stop the conversation and say something like, “We disagree, and you’re making us uncomfortable, so we’re ending this conversation now. Say, how about that weather?”
My boyfriend has been married twice, was engaged to two other women and has had several serious girlfriends in between. All his relationships ended due to his infidelity.
He’s 40 now and insists that he’s changed, wants a stable family life etc.
I’m considerably younger and have never been popular, so I fell head over heels.
I moved in with him and everything’s great, but a former girlfriend told me he’s come on to her.
He insists she was just acting maliciously, but I have doubts.
Do cheaters ever change? I’d probably stay with him even if he cheated because I know I'll never get someone like him again.
- Too Naïve?
Nothing makes a cheater repeat his ways more than a woman who lets him.
Drop the “naïve” bit and get some backbone.
If you have doubts, he’s giving you some reason.
Any more “clues” and you should leave.
Tip of the day:
Advice should be geared to solutions and improvement, not to judgment and punishment.