Passive Aggressive Grandmother

Dear Abby : Our daughter is divorced with two children. She has been dating a man who has three

children. Recently, they decided to move in together. All the children are first grade or younger.

oh, you shouldn't have

What would be the proper way to handle birthdays?

If my daughter and her boyfriend were married, or even engaged, I wouldn’t have a problem sending gifts to his children. But since my husband and I hardly know this man (we live in another state and have met him only once or twice), we’re not sure how to handle this. Should we just continue to send birthday gifts to our daughter’s kids and nothing but cards to his? Or would that look bad? What’s the proper thing? — FAIR-MINDED IN WEST VIRGINIA

Abby ‘s response as always offers good solid advice.

DEAR FAIR-MINDED: Your daughter and grandchildren have formed a household with her boyfriend and his kids. If you’re compassionate people, you will treat all of the children equally for as long as the

relationship lasts. If they decide to marry, which is a possibility, you will wind up being grandparents to all of them. If they eventually separate, you will have done the right thing and lent some stability and happiness to those children’s lives.

You almost had me fooled, Fair-Minded, but I see exactly what you are doing.  Letters like this are common, and usually it has to do with the parents not liking the new boyfriend or being downright cheap bastards. I’ve taken the liberty to rewrite your letter so your actual question is clear.

My daughter is living in sin with her new boyfriend.  I really want to see a ring on my daughter’s finger more than she does and it is driving me batty.  I think if they had one little extra push, they would do the right

thing and make their union official.  I don’t like confrontation.  Would it be ok for me to subtly exclude his children from our family until I get the wedding I so desperately want? – Grandma Knows Best

The answer is still no. Nice try though.


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