Dear Abby: Daughter left boyfriend to date a teenager

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Dear Abby: I’m the mom of a 31-year-old daughter who recently broke up with her longtime boyfriend so she can be with a 17-year-old kid. I probably wouldn’t be upset if she didn’t have sons who are 15, 14, 12 and a daughter, 10, who considered the man she broke up with their dad. Her new love is only two years older than her oldest. I am having a hard time accepting this and so are my grandkids.

I haven’t talked to my daughter about her choice because I know she’s an adult and the bottom line is it isn’t really my business. I do worry about how much confusion this causes the kids.

I don’t know if I can accept this new “man” in her life. To tell you the truth, I want nothing to do with him. I want to continue seeing my grandchildren, though, which will mean I’ll have to deal with this person on some level. How?

— Thrown in New York

Dear Thrown: Here’s how. Be a lady. You have a right to express your opinion privately, but when you see him, be cordial and do not make apparent how much you disapprove of the relationship. If you alienate him, you will lose. The result will be that you see less of him, your daughter will be upset with you and you will see less of your grandkids.

Dear Abby: I’m getting married soon, and I want to invite a colleague I have known for years. My colleague is gay and married. My fiance, “Ted,” is from a large, very traditional family. When I suggested inviting my co-worker and his husband, Ted expressed concern, stating that members of his family might feel alienated and uncomfortable.

I love Ted dearly, and I love his family. But I feel like I will be shutting out a friend by not inviting him and his spouse. Should I explain the situation to my colleague or leave it alone? Is it possible to reach a compromise that will make everyone happy?

— Loving Bride in Texas

Dear Bride: I think you should do what makes YOU happy. The problem with trying to please everyone is that it isn’t possible. Unless you want Ted’s family deciding who your friendships should include in the future, tell Ted this person is your friend and you do not want him and his husband to feel hurt by being excluded. Ted’s family will adjust, which is what gracious guests are supposed to do.

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