Tell son you don’t want him moving in
By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar
Creators Syndicate Inc.
DEAR ANNIE: I am a 65-year-old widow. My husband passed away last year, and I am still grieving.
The problem is my 45-year-old son from a previous marriage. "Gordon" never married and is planning to move in with me. He is an abusive drunk, has problems managing his money and doesn’t like to work. At the moment, he lives in an RV and is renting a parking place from a friend. His vehicles are not registered or insured.
Gordon has been telling people he is moving here to help me. I don’t need his help. I have earned the right to a quiet retirement. I supported my son and daughter until I was in my 40s. My daughter is married and on her own. I live 600 miles away and can see them when I want. I do not want to live any closer.
What would you suggest I do about Gordon? I’ve thought about leaving the country, but I can’t afford it. I love my son, but I don’t like him very much. — Mom
DEAR MOM: Tell Gordon right now that you do not want him moving in with you. Period. If he threatens or hurts you in any way, call the police and Adult Protective Services. Meanwhile, if your home is large enough to accommodate Gordon, you might consider selling it and moving into a smaller place.
DEAR ANNIE: "Jasper" has been my hairdresser for the last seven years. I’ve always been happy with the job he’s done and have recommended him to many people who are now his regulars. I feel loyal to him, but I have found someone else.
I won a gift certificate to have my hair cut at another salon, and I have never had a better haircut in my life. I thought it would be a one-time visit, but now, nothing else measures up. I would like to leave Jasper, but I don’t want to hurt his feelings. I’m sure if I just stop going to his salon, he’d eventually figure it out, but don’t I owe him an explanation? — In a Hairy Situation
DEAR HAIRY: We can’t imagine any nice way to tell him you’re leaving because his technique doesn’t measure up. You can simply stop going to him (such things happen to hairdressers more often than you think).
DEAR ANNIE: I had to respond to "Mother of a Former Honor Student in Indiana," whose two sons are addicted to Internet games. Now Mom is terrified the younger boy will turn violent if they try to take away his laptop.
The time to have dealt with this was when their son bought the laptop without their approval. He should have been told to return it to the store immediately. And why have they allowed him a cell phone with an Internet connection?
As for the older son who’s still at home mooching off the parents, if he’s over 18, it’s time to put the parental foot down and set a deadline for the bum to move out and start paying for his own addiction. I’m willing to bet these boys have been ruling the roost since they were in pull-up pants. — L.G.
DEAR L.G.: You are right that parents need to set rules and enforce them, but it’s a little late to change what has already happened. Parents who have allowed their children to get the upper hand will need some help regaining their authority.
Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please e-mail your questions to anniesmailboxcomcast.net, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, P.O. Box 118190, Chicago, IL 60611.