I met a guy through my son’s hockey league. I’m a single mom and the only parent my son has ever had. He’s eight years old. He’s a pretty good player - the other parents all notice and comment on his skills. I take no credit. I can barely skate.
One dad started paying more and more attention to me. I did my homework, as I’m sure he did too, and was assured that he was well divorced with two slightly older daughters as well as an eight-year-old son. I agreed to grab a coffee with him one early morning practice, which led to several dates and the beginning of what I thought was a nice relationship.
Recently, however, all he wants to talk about is hockey. Will my son move up a level? Will he switch teams? Do I think he’s able to make the commitment? Etc., etc. And then he starts comparing his son’s skills to mine, in detail.
I’m starting to dislike our time together because I’m feeling pressured by him and a distinct level of competition. I’m not interested in pursuing our relationship any further. How do I get out of this nicely so it’s not awkward moving forward?
That’s such a shame. It’s hard to meet people as a working single parent. There’s not a lot of personal time to date, let alone just go out with friends. And meeting another single parent with common interests sounds too good to be true.
At eight, your son is too young to do anything more than Select in most leagues. And as far as commitment, Select is usually only twice a week, as compared to once a week in House league. Your friend is jumping the gun a bit with his competitive attitude.
Don’t give up. This particular guy doesn’t sound right for you, but he’s not the only dad you’ll meet through your son.
At a recent family celebration, involving around 10 people, my nephew's new girlfriend refused to come upstairs from the basement where they slept, to meet the family.
She sent my nephew up several times, to take her dog outside, and to bring her food, but she refused to make an appearance.
There are no language or religious barriers that would cause her social angst, and my nephew says she just "can't be bothered" meeting his family.
I'm so over this woman that I have zero desire to make her future acquaintance. The get-together was at noon and she had ample time to leave the house and go to her own home before we arrived. As it was, she skulked around in the basement until we had all mostly cleared out around 4:30pm.
These are not young adults; they are in their 30s. How am I to be gracious when she finally manages to show up for an introduction?
I feel your aggravation and think if I were in your shoes, I might feel the same way. However, I would hope that your nephew’s mother has a better understanding of why this woman is in hiding.
If it were my son’s girlfriend, and there was no reason other than she “can’t be bothered,” then I would ask her to leave before the party started. But maybe that’s just her guise, and there are legit reasons for her to be fearful of groups, lots of family, etc.
As the aunt, you could have snuck downstairs quietly, introduced yourself on her terms, and brought her a fruit plate. Maybe she’s just painfully shy and needed a friendly outreach.
If nothing else, you would have given her the benefit of the doubt. Until you know her story, hold back on judging.
FEEDBACK Regarding the middle school student being educated about the LGBTQ+ community (Feb. 11):
“I encounter this complacent attitude among my intermediate students frequently. Why keep talking to us about it?
“You would not likely know if a close friend in class were, at 13 or 14, secretly struggling with his or her sexuality and might benefit from these discussions. Or, that there are classmates secretly harbouring hateful feelings and need to hear that their hatred has no place in society. And to state categorically that the entire current youth generation is allied with the LGBTQ+ community is a stretch. Hate and misinformation is passed down through generations, taught in families, and spread liberally on social media so prominently used by youth.
“Part of maturing is learning empathy, patience, and understanding that you still have a lot to learn.”