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Carolyn Hax: Son’s online romance ridiculous, mom says

Hi, Carolyn: My son is in his mid-20s and lives at home with me, my husband and one sibling. He has been employed for several years.

He hasn’t dated in over a year, and I brought that up recently. He told us he has been chatting for several hours a day, around their work schedules, in a gaming chat room with a woman from another state. He plans to visit her once his vacation time is available.

I asked how old she is, has she been married, does she have children, her name, where does she work, etc., and haven’t received an answer. He takes offense, claims I am trying to control this, and says he doesn’t want me to mess this up.

I think this whole thing is ridiculous. I told him people can be whoever they want to be on the Internet. He just got so ticked off at me. I am concerned about his safety, what this person may want from him and why he is willing to settle for this type of relationship. – Concerned mom

If he were writing to me, I’d have this two-word answer: Move out.

You get this one: Back off.

He’s a grown man with feelings for someone, and his mother is in his face, calling him ridiculous. You needn’t have said that out loud for him to get the message.

If you want answers, then base your questions on a fundamental respect for his ability – and right – to run his own life.

Through the concerns you’ve voiced, you’ve implied that your son is a fool for not realizing there are risks, and that this woman must be after something, because it can’t possibly be about liking your son. A strong no-confidence vote.

Instead of digging to find out just how badly your boy is screwing up, open your mind to the possibility this man is doing OK for himself – and withhold judgment till you know more.

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