Editor’s note: Ask Deanna! Is an advice column known for its fearless approach to reality-based subjects! Ask Deanna! can be heard every Sunday on KTYM AM 1460 at 3 p.m. in Los Angeles, CA.
I disagree with teenage dating and feel kids shouldn’t have dates until they finish high school. All of the young teens in our family are dating and they are all a mess. The girls are going through stress, crying and wearing a lot of make-up. The boys want to be thugs and are going through many girls for the notches on their belt. I’m viewed as the old maid in the family but my children are stress free because I don’t let them date. When is the right age to begin dating?
Geraldine Thomas, Ft. Worth, TX
If you have pep in your step and can get moving then your children can eat your dust and let you continue living your life. You’ve paid your dues and you’re entitled to more than babysitting and planting flowers if your foot isn’t on a banana peel. However, you still need to practice caution and good judgment in all areas. You may be mature and wise and financially stable, but sexual diseases and HIV doesn’t discriminate.
My sister has moved in with me and it’s a total disaster. She is a liar, a thief and a master manipulator. I am used to a calm life that doesn’t involve anyone opening my mail, answering my phone and acting as if they live in a hotel with room service. I’m going to put her out but I have to face drama from my family because she’s told them a pack of lies. Our family is torn and she already has everyone on her side. How do I evict her and still save face.
Anonymous, Los Angeles, CA
You need your sister and all of this madness just like you need a hole in the head. However, your sister is someone you grew up with and you knew most things about her before she moved in. This decision is quick and to the point. If it’s your house, your rules and your money, then she needs to shape up or ship out. If you have some joint agreements, then you need to change some locks, make new rules and try again before sending her packing.
I have to choose who I want to marry. I have a childhood friend that would love to be with me but I don’t feel any fireworks for him. I really want to marry my ex-boyfriend but I know he would only marry me for stability since he has a history of unemployment. I am so anxious to become a married woman but I’m having a tough time with this decision. Neither man has expressed this interest so I will be the one proposing. Who do I choose?
Marriage Confusion, On-Line Reader
You are missing the major dynamics of marriage such as a mutual agreement and of course, a loving committed relationship. This is a union from God and not to be taken lightly or as a game. Your childhood friend doesn’t deserve heartbreak and your ex-boyfriend would use you. You deserve better and should invest time in building a loving relationship with someone that has love, trust, respect and a joint decision for commitment and matrimony.
My girlfriend has been volunteering to baby sit, run errands and really help me out. I started getting suspicious when she began staying later when my husband came home. I didn’t give it much thought until she washed his laundry. I hit the roof when she bought him some cologne. I kicked her out and gave my husband a few choice words. He accused me of overreacting. I decided to put my foot down and end this mess before it started. Am I wrong?
Mona, Portland, OR
You acted properly before your girlfriend decided to help herself to your husband. He is innocent but like most men, he enjoyed the attention and didn’t realize he was being set up. You need to give the cologne back to her and let her know that you no longer need her services. If you choose to remain friends, issue new boundaries that don’t include your husband. In the meanwhile, continue to run your household, regulate your marriage and keep it moving.
I’m a single mom with five kids and I’ve reunited with my boyfriend of two years. I admit we've had problems on both sides but during this recent make up he expressed his love, he said that he missed us and he wants to pick up where we left off. He went to work one day and I didn’t hear from him until two weeks later. He left me a voice mail saying that his job had offered him a training position in another town and he would be back on the weekend. I didn’t hear anything for three days and decided that I love myself and I’m tired of games. What should I do about this man?
Confused, Seattle, WA
If a man loves you so much, he will not disappear for two weeks and not contact you. These are signs that he’s immature, selfish and not very responsible. Your relationship ended for a reason and you should move forward instead of two steps back. You have enough kids already and don’t need to add an overgrown man to the bunch. Set an example for your kids by taking care of them, loving yourself and waiting for a man that will treat you right.
I’m in college and me and my peers have the same issues. Were short on money, have to do odd jobs to buy gas and we pool our money to buy food. Things are working out with the exception of one friend that isn’t pulling her load. She rides in the car with us and eats the food but we noticed that she isn’t contributing to the fund. We all have seen her with new clothes and manicures. How do we tell her that she needs to pay her money or she’s out of the group?
Carla, Pensacola, FL
You guys are on the right track as you’ve realized early on that there is strength in numbers. You need to carefully document all the agreed upon activity within the group and demonstrate her lack of participation. Have a face-to-face discussion once you’ve verified a few things and can determine if her shortcomings are legit or bogus. If she’s been getting over, then your friend is a freeloader and let her know that she needs to pay her way or get out of the group.
I was in a marriage for three years. I am now legally divorced with no strings attached and I want to live my life. I’m very responsible but my family accuses me of being an unfit parent. My children are old enough to be left home alone and I don’t bring my relationships in front of them. I don’t want to enter another serious relationship and wish everyone would leave me alone. Does it matter what I do as long as my family is taken care of?
As a parent, you have moral obligations you must adhere to whether you want to or not. There’s nothing wrong with having fun, recreational dating and enjoying the rush of single life. Double check your actions in regards to your parenting skills and the care arrangements for your children while you’re out and about. You may not want a relationship, but you want to be careful and not fall into the category of a garden tool.
I’m a Christian and there are things that I do that people don’t agree with. I feel as if I can drink wine, enjoy music and wear what I want to wear. Don’t get me wrong, I love the Lord and do what I’m supposed to do. My life is fine but other people don’t think so. I don’t like being judged when other people at church do the same thing but pretend to be super holy. Do I need to go ahead and change churches because these people aren’t going to change?
If you were as rooted and tooted in your faith as you pretend to be, you wouldn’t worry about what other people think. You need to put your stones away and come out of the same glass house that everyone else is in. You’re just as guilty because you just so happen to know their business the way they know yours. Do yourself a favor and mind your business, live according to God’s word and seek to receive growth and understanding in your worship instead of human acceptance.
My wife and I are having financial troubles because she won’t stop spending money. We live on a budget but she keeps breaking the rules. It’s at the point where our bills are late, my credit rating has become poor and we don’t have money to do simple things. I don’t mind her spending here and there, but she makes major purchases without my consent, goes on trips and gives money to her family. How do I let her know this is killing our marriage?
Long Island City, NY
You should bear the responsibility of eliminating her access to cash, bank accounts and credit cards and pay all the bills yourself. Your immediate goal is to stabilize the finances and your credit rating. The next step is to physically give her a budget and if she messes up, leave her to fend for herself. Once this is done, encourage your wife to get some counseling and stick to the budget you give her or you’ll both be looking at each other in the poor house.
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