Dear Dr. Pam,
You will never know how delighted I was, a couple of weeks ago, to stumble across your column. Finally, I can ask a very important question and remain anonymous. Three years ago, I met a wonderful woman. Today, I am ready to propose marriage, as we cohabitate and I want to make an honorable decision. The problem is she is very selfish.
I find that I think and act about her much more than she seems to be concerned about me. She makes a statement that grinds my nerves. She says that she would never marry a man who has children. I think this is irresponsible and self centered. Fortunately, I have no children, but did I mention that she has two? How could one be so hypocritical? Any help is appreciated.
Dear John Boy,
Anything that “grinds” your nerves must be bad for your brain. By your admissions, she is a wonderful woman. Conversely, this situation is a problem for you. Have a conversation with your lady and point out the error of her ways. Tell her how you feel about her position on stepchildren, and how this distances you from her. Her reaction should help you to decide what to do. Ultimately, you must know with what you can live.
Dear Dr. Pam,
I attended my daughter’s graduation from a prestigious institution in the United States, in December of last year. She performed very well and obtained a Master of Science degree in chemistry. I was devastated to learn, that she has no immediate plans to return home. In fact, she has stated that Freeport does not have any thing to offer her.
I want my child home. There is much that she can offer Freeport, and by extension, The Bahamas. Please help me to persuade her. This is my Baby.
Dear Mommy Dearest,
On the contrary, she is your adult daughter!! Viewing her as your baby, does not allow you to see or appreciate the values and training you have bestowed upon her. While I do agree that she does have much to contribute to our society, this choice must be hers.
In these difficult times, she can potentially spend some time waiting on Grand Bahama. Find out what she wants to do (teach, work with an oil company, research, etc.) and keep her apprised of vacancies.
Idealistically, she can complete application forms and leave them on files. Realistically, she can stay where she is, obtain some experience and better equip herself for the position she desires in The Bahamas. Encourage and support her path.
Point to ponder: Free will is not an illusion.
• Ask Doctor Pam is an advice column that is featured every week in this journal. Your letters and comments are encouraged. You may e-mail them to firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to Askdoctorpam P.O. Box F43736. Dr. Pam is a Clinical Psychologist trained in all areas of mental health.