DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: My mother is seeing a man and it bugs me. She has every right to, I guess, since we buried my father a year ago and he was very sick for a few years before that.
Still, somehow it seems kind of rude to be going out with this guy already and, from what I can tell, having sex with him. She is pushing 50 and nothing special to look at, but she’s out there, joined a singles club and is never home.
Perhaps it wouldn’t bother me so much if I didn’t live with her in our family home, but I don’t currently have a job. OK, for the past year — but there’s nothing out there in my field. No woman will want to go out with me until I’m on my feet.
I sneered and said something nasty about her nocturnal activities when mom showed up this morning at 8 a.m. for breakfast before work. She lost it on me.
She said I should find a place to live with a friend because she was living her own life "socially" now. I said, "You mean sexually!" She really let me have it then. What do you suggest?
— Unwanted Son, River Heights
Dear Unwanted: It’s interesting you refer to yourself as an unwanted "son" and not "man." It’s time you grew up 10 years in a hurry. Your mom is working and living her life fully, and you have been given your walking papers. You can bet she wants you to spend every day looking for a job — and couch-surfing at a buddy’s house, starting now, at least on weekends.
You need to get yourself out and independent, and in a new place where you could have a new girlfriend over and have a love relationship yourself.
Your mom’s past few years can’t have been pleasant and she may have appreciated your support and company at home. But your dad’s been gone a year, and you have to be around 30. Face facts. Your mother has demanded her privacy back. Give her that and you’ll gain a feeling of self-respect and of being a grown man in the world.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: My girlfriend is a humongous pain in the butt. She gives me lists of things to do when I leave the house we share, which she owns. She stays at home doing freelance computer work.
"You’re going to be out for work anyway" is her excuse for me to pick up dry cleaning, fetch and pay for groceries and special, expensive dog food. I walk those dogs twice daily and poop-scoop the backyard, too! I also split the mortgage and utilities. Yesterday, she phoned my firm with a list of things for me to do after work and I blew up, yelling into the phone: "Do your own errands! You have a car, but you’re too #$%& lazy to leave the house!"
I’m madder than I should be, and dying to leave. Why is that? (By the way, I have enough money saved for a down payment on a house. Should I buy one — for me?)
— No Longer in Love, Southdale
Dear No Longer in Love: You are about to liberate yourself from a difficult co-habitation situation, where you don’t own your own house and allow yourself to be treated as an errand boy. That makes you very angry, though you hid it and did it. In your next relationship, practise equal division of labour. Also, trade off housework and errands regularly so you don’t get stuck with certain jobs forever.
You obviously do want to buy a house, so now is the time. Call your lawyer, accountant and a real estate agent. Be sure to leave your common-law marriage settled fairly, legally and quickly. Dragging it out hurts everybody worse.