Terry writes, “My daughter is dating a man 17 years older than her. I worry that down the line she will want to have children and he will feel he’s too old. He is 42, she is 25. I worry about her wasting years on him only to be disappointed later. What should I do?”
Adults should be able to decide who to date
On one hand, I am tempted to say that since she is 25, she really wouldn’t want to hear from you who she should date, and as an adult she should be left alone to make choices about her life (Remember Diane Keaton and Mandy Moore in the movie ‘Because I said so?’). I mean what makes you think that she may want to have children or this man may not want to have children? In other words, even if she were to date a man her age, there is no guarantee that the man may want kids or not change his mind later on. And of course there are couples with infertility issues and not everyone thinks that kids are critical to happiness in life.
Regarding the age difference, yes, it is nice to be somewhat in the same age range so that you have had somewhat similar experiences, grow old together (so that the younger partner is not alone for too long), and go through life as friends, but marriage is about compromises and if one finds fulfillment and happiness with an older partner, it is simply a compromise that one is willing to make. An older man maybe financially stable, mature, stable, and more secure of himself, thus, providing things that a woman may find more joyful, instead of marrying a man her age who maybe buried in debt, may not have a high-level job, and could be immature.
How to talk to your daughter without making her become defensive?
Having said that, as a mother who cares for her, and if you are close to her, it is not a bad idea to have a conversation as two adults with her about her choice. Just tell her your concerns but do not tell her what to do. All you want to do is to provide her with something to think about. That way she will appreciate the input but will not feel pressured to take a certain course of action. Maybe that will prod her to ask that to her boyfriend and clarify it, maybe she will dump him because of that, but the last thing young people want to have today are parents telling them who to date.
Priscilla writes, “My boyfriend and father of our child has an obssesive mother who is so jealous of me. She says that I am taking him away from her. She is very clingy and uses money to get to him. Since we are both just 18, he depends on her for money. We have been dating for two years but have been best friends for 5 years. She told me that he has no responsibility to the baby because it’s not in the courts. She tells him we spend too much time together. He just doesn’t know what to do because he feel like he is choosing me over his mother whereas that’s not the case. What should I do? What advice do you have? I love him so much but I dislike his mother.” (Related: My mother hates my girlfriend)
This woman wants to harass you so that you will get so frustrated and discouraged that you will simply go away leaving her son to her (it clearly reminds me of the other monster mother-in-law Sarah Palin who tried her very best to get rid of son-in-law Levi Johnston who was the father of her grandson Tripp with her daughter Bristol who became a teenage mom; there are reports that Todd Palin used threats and bribes to his daughter to breakup with Levi when the two were dating). The key to dealing with this problem is that you should not fight with her at all and even avoid dealing with her. You have to instead talk to your boyfriend and tell him to be a man and stop being a sissy by letting her mistreat you and her grandson. I understand that your boyfriend is not financially independent but trust me if he stands up to her, this woman is so much in love with him that she will still not throw him out. He has to stand up for himself and his family and that includes you and your son together. If the birth certificate does not have his name as the biological father, then contact an attorney and straighten out the paperwork. A DNA test to establish fatherhood may be needed.
I also want you to make sure that this boyfriend of yours does not use his mother as an excuse to abandon you and his son. I would not be surprised if he secretly wishes that you two were gone from his life so that he can move on and is using his mother to make that happen. I am not saying that is the case but I want you to think of this possibility and make sure that he is on your side.
To put together a meal that included scallops curry with avocado, baked squash, vegetables in coconut milk, and pecan pie, I needed to have an appropriate dining table decoration that would be ideal for a romantic dinner. I used a runner from Morocco along with silk place-mats and put some candles in the center. It was a great meal and led to a heavenly night.