Dear Annie: I am 19 years old and seem to be getting pulled in different directions. I have been a good daughter, making my parents proud with great academics and strong morals.
I have been dating “Derek” since my sophomore year in high school. He is a terrific guy with similar academics and morals. My whole family loves him. Here’s the problem: When I first started seeing Derek, my parents got into a huge fight with his parents, and it has been awkward ever since. Immediately after the fight, I was not allowed to go to Derek’s house, and I obeyed. I am a college student now, and they still forbid me from going to his home.
I believe this should be my decision. I think my parents need to realize my relationship with Derek is not about them, and they should get over whatever hard feelings exist. The more they try to hold me back, the more I see myself growing apart from them. What should I do? – Lost in America
Dear Lost: You are old enough to make these decisions yourself, and as an upstanding, responsible college student, your parents should trust your choices. If you intend to make this relationship permanent, not only will you need to spend time with Derek’s family, it would be in your parents’ best interests to find a way to let bygones be bygones. You might point this out to them.
Dear Annie: I read the letter from “Ignored in Virginia,” who was upset that a shopkeeper filled a major phone order instead of continuing to show her around so she could “have items of interest pointed out.”
My husband owns a retail business. “Virginia” says she was a customer. Wrong. A customer comes to buy something. The store owner was polite. She apologized and excused herself to fulfill a previous order. Should she have lost a major client to amuse a looky-loo who had no intention of buying? It might have made the difference between having a business or not. – Store Owner’s Wife
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