Dear Annie: I have a pretty, petite 24-year-old daughter who is quite immature for her age. She looks like she is 15. She still lives at home, occasionally helps around the house and attends the local community college. But she can’t keep a job for long.
Lately, she has had boyfriend problems. She tends to pick guys who are loaded with baggage. When she is not with a guy her own age, she hangs out with the senior men at the Veterans of Foreign Wars club. They allow her to deal the cards at their poker games.
How can we get her to grow up without being the bad guys? She does not know how to cook or take care of herself, so we are reluctant to simply throw her out. But we want her to do things other people her age do. Any advice? – Clueless in California
Dear Clueless: If you are concerned that your daughter doesn’t have sufficient life skills to manage on her own, then teach her. Put her in charge of cooking dinner one night a week. Show her how to do her own laundry. Tell her she will need a part-time job to pay for room and board. Then help her look for her own apartment. While she is in school, you may wish to subsidize her rent, but living independently will help her mature.
Dear Annie: I just graduated from college and two of my friends and I planned a camping party to celebrate. I made the reservation months ago. A week before the party, one of the girls backed out.
We had an understanding that we would split all the costs, and I would pay the money upfront. Since I paid for the reservation, I told my friend she still needs to reimburse me for her portion because the campsite won’t cancel with less than two weeks’ notice. My friend refuses to pay her share. Am I wrong to insist? – Arizona State
Dear Arizona: Your friend should reimburse you. If you cannot find someone else to join the camping trip at this late date, tell your friend you expect her to pay you back, even if it’s $5 a month.
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