Succession shocker may be a blessing in disguise
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DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: I got some news recently that really shook me up! I thought I could go into my dad’s business after high school, learn the ropes and end up running the operation. But today, he asked me where I want to go to school after graduation, and what I want to study! I’m in Grade 11 now.
I said, “I thought I’d start working for you, and work my way up to owner.”
He actually laughed at me, and said, “Things are much more complicated than when I started the business. You’d need education and training now.” I don’t like school and I don’t get good grades, but I’m a hard worker and have done two summers at my dad’s business. He only had a Grade 12 education and that was enough for him to become a success. Also, he doesn’t know much about computers and I do.
Then he said, “Besides, I need to sell the business one day so I have enough for your mom and me to live on for the rest of our lives. I can’t be giving it away to my son.” So much for my dreams. What can I do now?
— Broken Dreams, East Kildonan
Dear Broken: Your dad may have done you a big favour. The bigwigs in his company likely would not have appreciated a young prince coming in to take over the king’s business — especially after not paying his dues and being handed all the best jobs on his way up. Some sons and daughters of owners have been hated for leap-frogging over hardworking employees.
Not everybody wants to go to university. Luckily there are many different learning paths to success. Hit the student counselling services at your school ASAP. You have a year and a half to do aptitude testing, identify a career you’d enjoy, apply to colleges and earn good enough marks to get in.
Luckily, you’re good with computers, which are a big part of just about any field nowadays. As for not liking to study, that feeling decreases dramatically when you dive into a field or subject that truly fascinates you.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I went out with a work girlfriend for dinner and drinks. I couldn’t help but notice there was a woman with beautiful dark long hair and a tall back who looked kind of familiar, sitting alone three tables over. She turned to look me square in the face. It was my ex-boyfriend, dressed as a woman.
I went over, and all I could say was: “Why are you in drag?” “She” locked eyes with me and said very slowly, “I’m in the process of becoming who I really am.”
I just stood there, holding my breath, trying to take her in. All I could say was a sarcastic, “Well, good luck!” And started to walk away. Then I turned and asked: “Are you happy?” She smiled the smile I used to love, and said, “Thanks, I am getting closer.”
I’m so mixed up. What am I supposed to do now? Was I such a terrible girlfriend? Please help me understand. I’m going crazy!
— His/Her Former Girlfriend, south Winnipeg
Dear Former Girlfriend: You’re in an emotional crisis, questioning the reality of your romantic and sexual experience with your former love partner. Remember this: No matter what identity confusion your ex was feeling while with you, his loving feelings had to be strong to stay in that closet in order to be with you.
Being a better girlfriend wouldn’t have made any difference, because it simply wasn’t about your behaviour. The best thing you can do is get professional help to better understand everything you can. Hopefully, you can one day sincerely mean those good luck wishes for your ex.
Please send your questions and comments to email@example.com or Miss Lonelyhearts c/o the Winnipeg Free Press, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6.
Maureen Scurfield writes the Miss Lonelyhearts advice column.
Updated on Friday, February 3, 2023 8:26 AM CST: Fixes headline, fixes byline