I get so worried and upset I find myself yelling at her and trying to prevent her from leaving with these strange men. She thinks I’m trying to control her life when I’m actually trying to save her. What should I do? I’m getting too old to be stressing out about what she’s doing and who she’s with.
– Stressed-Out in California
Dear Stressed-Out: You can’t “save” your daughter. Until she realizes she needs help, and is willing to accept it and change her life, she is unreachable.
You can, however, talk to an attorney about gaining legal custody of your grandchild. Terrible things can happen to women who do what your daughter is doing. That little girl needs safety, consistency and stability, and it appears you are the only relative she has who is capable of giving it to her. Please don’t wait.
Looking for familiar names in obituaries
– Still Alive in San Diego
Dear Still Alive: People read the obituary section for various reasons, including the fact that some of the deceased have lived very interesting lives. If they see the name of an acquaintance, they may feel sadness at the loss or sympathy for the family, knowing each death leaves a hole in someone’s heart. But to feel “let down” seems to me like a lack of empathy, and in my opinion, it IS weird.
Treat retail workers fairly
I had one parent ask me after finding out that we were out of stock on a certain toy, “What am I supposed to do now?” I suggested looking online, but what I really wanted to say was, “Take your kids to help out at a homeless shelter so they can count their blessings!”
– Santa’s Helper in Iowa City
Dear Santa’s Helper: To the panicked parent who asks, “What am I supposed to do now?” you could respond by saying, “Now you go to Plan B.” Then suggest some other toy the child would like – even though it’s not his or her No. 1 choice.