KEEPING SECRETS CAN OFTEN RUIN FAMILY RELATIONS
Ask Dr. Pam
Dear Dr. Pam,
I have been in a relationship from the age of 18 years and now I am 20 years old. My mother has always known about the person whom I am dating. She knows that it is a serious relationship; that we are more than friends.
My father, on the other hand, knows of him only as one of my friends, not as my boyfriend. I have been waiting for an appropriate age to finally tell my father. Since I am 20 years old now, do you think I should let him know what is going on, or should I continue to wait?
Based on the information shared, it sounds as if you are very serious about this young man and the future implications for your lives. I think that it is time to have a talk with your father. As you did not share a lot of information about other aspects of your life, ensure that you do have a time line and a planned future, in terms of college, career, vocation or employment. Keeping secrets can often ruin family relations, and leave feelings of doubt and suspicion. You may be amazed to discover that your father knows more than you think.
Beyond this issue, however, I suggest you take a close look at your relationship with your parents; ask yourself why it is difficult to disclose such intimate information to your father and yet it is so convenient for your mother to collude with you in keeping this secret.
Dear Dr. Pam,
My married son, his wife and four children live with me. I am widowed and retired. The issue is my boarders make no contributions toward the running of the house. I am using my pension to pay bills. Should he stay or go?
Dear Retired Mom,
I think you have answered your question but just need a little reassurance. Remind your son that you live on limited resources. Determine a monthly amount of money that is necessary for him and his family to remain there. Get a commitment in writing that he understands and is willing to comply.
If he breaches the terms of the contract, tell him he has to move. The reality is, if he lived any where else, he would have to carry his weight.
Point to Ponder: "With age comes experience."
Ask Doctor Pam is an advice column that is featured every Saturday in this journal. Your letters and comments are encouraged. You may email your letters or comments firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to Askdoctorpam P.O. Box F43736. Dr. Pam is a Clinical Psychologist trained in all areas of mental health.
© 2012 The Freeport News