Dear Abby: Hair-trigger temper keeps mom walking on eggshells
Dear Abby

Dear Abby: Hair-trigger temper keeps mom walking on eggshells

DEAR ABBY: I have one child, a daughter, "Anna," I adopted at 19 months. She's 41 now and has two small children. She had a normal upbringing, although her father and I divorced when she was 9. She has chosen to not have a relationship with him as an adult. Anna has never married, nor has she been in a relationship for longer than four or five months. According to a few counselors I have seen, she has attachment disorder.

Anna is very difficult. She's mean, says hateful things and is an angry young woman. She takes no responsibility for any of her actions, and therefore cannot keep a job, friends, etc. for more than a few months. She is also extremely negative. If I try to say anything, she gets angry, starts cussing, yelling and slinging hate, and stops contacting me for weeks at a time.

We have nothing in common. We live in separate states, but I see her about a half-dozen times a year. When I do, I tiptoe around on eggshells because of her short fuse. Her attitude is starting to rub off on her boys.

This is not what I had envisioned all those years ago when I adopted her. I miss who I thought she would become. Is there anything I can do without completely alienating myself from my grandsons, which would break my heart? -- TIPTOEING ON EGGSHELLS

DEAR TIPTOEING: I am sorry your adoption did not turn out as you envisioned. Your daughter is clearly troubled, and it is not surprising that her attitude has begun to affect her boys. It is time you accept that, as much as you wish to, you cannot change another person, and there's nothing you can do to "fix" her.

You mentioned that you visit her every two months. Perhaps you should consider visiting fewer times than that. Ask if she would let the grandkids come and visit Grandma occasionally. However, if she isn't receptive, refusing to engage with her is the price you will have to pay for seeing them and trying to cement a relationship with them.

DEAR ABBY: I have been dating a girl since high school. We were high school sweethearts, but now we are both 28. My girlfriend wants to get married and have kids, but I do not. I want to keep dating her. I am scared to break up with her because if I did, I wouldn't know what to do with my life. Should I change, or should she change? -- STATUS QUO IN COLORADO

DEAR STATUS QUO: I hereby appoint you to be the designated changer. You have been so absorbed with this romance you never took the time to develop interests of your own.

At the age of 28, many women start thinking about marriage and children. Doing that is normal and rational. However, because you don't feel ready to make a lifetime commitment, you would be making a huge mistake to allow yourself to be pushed into it.

It is important that you learn who you are before you marry anyone. Accomplishing this is a process that takes time and a variety of experiences, and you should embark on that now. It would be unfair to continue dating her at this point because your paths are going to diverge as each of you learns to manage without leaning on the other.

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DEAR ABBY: My husband of nearly 22 years and I divorced last year after he told me he didn't want to be married anymore and didn't know if he ever loved me. Since our split, he has bought a home with another woman -- the same woman I suspected him of having an affair with, and the same woman he encouraged me to befriend during our marriage. 

DEAR ABBY: I recently lost my mom. It was very sudden. We were extremely close, and she was the most wonderful grandmother to my children. My mother-in-law and my husband have a strained relationship that I have struggled to navigate for years. I have always reached out to her and made sure she sees the grandchildren.

DEAR ABBY: I am dealing with the worst heartbreak ever. I don't know what I did to make my boyfriend stop liking me. He won't talk to me or text me back, and now he has blocked me on Facebook. One minute he said that he would always hang out with me and the next he told me to stop messaging him and blocked me. All of this has made me go out of control, and now I want to hate on everyone. How can I stop this awful hurt? -- LOVE HURTS IN OREGON

DEAR ABBY: I have three beautiful daughters. The oldest moved to Wisconsin some years ago. About a year ago, my middle daughter went to visit her. My older daughter said something about politics that the younger one didn't like, and since then the younger one refuses to communicate with her, which is breaking my heart. My older daughter asked if I could help by talking to her. 

DEAR ABBY: I have a question about my daughter's new husband, "Brad." I haven't interfered with their marriage and don't want to, but he seems very moody and barely speaks to me. Just when I think I've found a common topic, on the next visit four or five weeks later, he doesn't say a word.

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