Dear Abby: I am a 29-year-old woman in a healthy, loving relationship with my boyfriend of 2 1/2 years. We talk about marriage and kids and are committed to each other. We know we are each other’s special one. He recently bought a home, and we live together. My issue is with my mother. I feel she won’t be happy with me until I’m married and have children.
She and Dad met and were married within six months, so to her, any relationship that lasts longer than that without marriage or an engagement must not be the real deal. It has been extremely frustrating over the past couple of years. She slips in judgmental comments all the time and clearly doesn’t respect my relationship.
If I try to defend my life and our relationship, she says I’m too defensive and must be unhappy. If I say nothing, which has been my approach for the past six months or so, her snide comments continue. I want a good relationship with her, but I am not sure where to go from here. Marriage and kids are in our future but not for some time. We are enjoying our own timeline. — It’s My Life In Colorado
Dear IML: At 29, you are well into adulthood, so it’s time to draw the line. Tell your mother you know she loves you and is concerned for you, but you do not plan to marry on her timeline. Tell her that her comments are hurtful, and you need her to quit the needling, or she will be seeing a lot less of you. Be prepared to follow through.
Dear Abby: I have wrestled with this for a year. I thought I had a good friend. I had a pacemaker implanted, and eight months later broke my elbow. Both times I was hospitalized. Not once did she come to see me or send a card, even though she is a card lover. I overlooked it until my son’s death. She sent me some fruit but didn’t call to see how I was doing, no visitation, nothing. She didn’t send a sympathy card either.
I now regard her as selfish, and I can no longer bring myself to be friends with her. We all make mistakes, but three times with no support from her is more than I can accept. I now feel we weren’t friends at all. I have many friends who were there for me. They cried with us, consoled us, brought food, stayed with us. Are my feelings valid? — Abandoned In Florida
Dear Abandoned: Where feelings are concerned, there is no “right” or “wrong.” Sometimes people feel extremely uncomfortable about what they should say or do when a difficult situation arises such as an illness, an accident or a death. That your friend made herself absent when you needed her support is unfortunate. Not knowing her, I can’t guess her reason, and neither can you. So before you abandon her, you should ask her that question.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother,Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at P.O. Box 69440,Los Angeles,CA 90069 or visit