Posted: Tuesday, July 12, 2011 8:01 pm
Dear Annie: Five months ago, I begged my sister to move in with me to get her away from her abusive boyfriend. It took some convincing and tough love, but she finally ceased contact with him completely. Three months after she moved in, my fiancé and I found out that we were expecting a baby. We set a wedding date, and he moved in immediately.
We are getting married next weekend, and I am losing my mind. Neither my fiancé nor my sister is paying their share of the bills. Neither wants to clean the house. In fact, they don’t seem to have grown up at all, even though we will soon be adding to our family. They both ignore basic responsibilities and think it’s outrageous that I would put mowing the lawn ahead of poker night at the bar.
There isn’t enough room in the house for the three of us, much less a baby, and the situation is compounded when my fiancé’s 4-year-old son visits. To make matters worse, I’m having a hard time distinguishing between legitimate concerns, pre-wedding jitters and pregnancy hormones. My sister says she plans to move out before the baby is born, but I don’t believe her.
I am a college graduate with a great job, and I worked hard to get where I am. I’m willing to do whatever is necessary to give our child that same security, but it feels like I have two overgrown adolescents in the house. I can’t wait to be a mother, but I’m beginning to think I would be better off doing it alone. How can I get my fiancé and sister to grow up and understand the changes that are coming? — N.E.
Dear N.E.: If your fiancé doesn’t understand the need to contribute to the maintenance of his home, he is not ready to be a husband and father. And your sister must find her own place as soon as possible. Her presence compounds the problems with your fiancé. The two of them feed off of each other, looking for ways to avoid responsibility. You’ve been a good sister. Help yours find another place to live, and then get into counseling with your fiancé as soon as possible.
Dear Annie: I am a 36-year-old female, happily divorced and living on my own (one dog, no children). I am very close to my parents and see them frequently. The problem is, they constantly ask where I’m going, what I did last night, what my plans are for the weekend, who I’m going to be with, and on and on. It drives me nuts. I’m happy to share details of my life with them, but do I have to tell them absolutely everything? — Terri in Los Angeles
Dear Terri: Your parents ask these intrusive questions because they want to feel like a part of your life. This does not mean you have to answer. When you see them, offer as much information about your schedule as you wish. When they ask about things you do not care to share, simply tell them they will have to respect your privacy. If you say it nicely and often enough, they will get the message.
Dear Annie: This is in response to “Want To Make Things Right,” whose friend is exhibiting paranoid ideas about rays causing abdominal pain and his shower causing his skin to tingle and burn.
Years ago, I lived in an apartment, and suddenly, after five years there, I began to feel nauseated every time I walked in the door. When I took a shower, the water felt electrified.
Our landlady was very understanding and had the electric company check their nearby transformers. It wasn’t until we moved out that I discovered there was a dormant oil well about 500 feet away that an oil company was priming to use again. They got the oil flowing by shooting electricity 300 to 500 feet down the well. — Lomita, Calif.
Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please e-mail your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 5777 W. Century Blvd., Ste. 700, Los Angeles, CA 90045. To find out more about Annie’s Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
Published in The Messenger 7.12.11