Dear Annie: My daughter has been married for 14 years to a wonderful, successful, caring husband, and they have four beautiful children. But she recently moved out of their home. I can’t believe it.
Everyone could tell the marriage wasn’t going that well in the past year, but we thought it was the usual ups and downs. Then my daughter started spending a lot of evenings with her girlfriends and staying out until the wee hours. She also became secretive and not the loving, open daughter she had been.
I asked her to see a doctor, thinking maybe she was depressed, but also to check her thyroid because I have hypothyroidism and so did her grandmother. But she told me to stay out of it, that it’s between her and her husband. She says there’s no abuse, drugs or alcohol, and I believe her. But I think she is seeing someone on the side. She says she just doesn’t love her husband anymore.
I asked her to please go to counseling or speak to their pastor, and she said no. She told me to leave them alone and let them work it out. Now she says the split is permanent. I am devastated and angry with my daughter. She left the kids with her husband, and she’s moved in with her sister. I cannot believe she would do this.
I see the kids two or three times a week when I babysit. My daughter has asked me to support her in this decision, but I just can’t. What do I do? – Beyond Sad
Dear Beyond: We know this is breaking your heart, but you must try your best to stay out of it. Whatever problems are going on in your daughter’s marriage are hers to deal with, good or bad. Try to spend time with the children, especially if you can bring them to your house, giving them a stable, calm place to visit. But don’t take sides. The best you can do is talk to your other daughter and ask that she encourage her sister not to rush into anything she’ll regret.