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Tue, Oct. 22

Visiting daughter should respect family

Dear Jan:

My husband and I are facing an uncomfortable situation. Our 27-year-old daughter is single and has a good job in Sacramento, Calif. She is dating a 32-year-old divorced man with one child. In June, she is bringing him here to meet us for the first time.

Since they are living together in Sacramento, she assumes they will stay in our home for the four days they are here. Jan, this goes against our moral values. She knows exactly how we feel, but seems to be ignoring our standards. We have not discussed it, she is just assuming. How can I tell her they cannot stay together in our home without offending her? We love our daughter dearly, and are looking forward to seeing her and meeting her boyfriend. Do we stick to our values, or bend a little to avoid offending them ... this time?

Signed, Her Mom

Dear Mom:

You do not have to sacrifice your standard to comply to your daughter's selfish desires. She knows exactly where you stand... after all, she grew up in your home.

She is wrong to force the issue to get her way.

You can tell her very lovingly how much you are looking forward to seeing her, and meeting him, but, "Honey, you two are going to have to make other lodging arrangements while you are here."

Don't cave in to her expectations. Continue to give her a higher standard to live up to.

Signed, Jan

Dear Jan:

My husband and I have been married for five years. I have tried everything I know to get along with his mother, but she is impossible to satisfy. She finds fault with the way I dress, the way I keep house, cook ... you name it. She is coming here from Calif. to visit us for two miserable weeks. I can't tell you how I am dreading her visit.

My husband feels the same way, but I think he is almost afraid to confront her. How am I going to get through these two weeks? I love my husband and don't want anything to upset him. What do I do? Just take her insults day after day? HELP!

Signed, Daughter-in-law

Dear Daughter:

It is good that your husband sees and disapproves of her behavior toward you. However, it is not good that he is afraid to confront her.

While she is in your home, be as gracious as you can. However, if she starts in on you, tell her firmly, but kindly, that while she is in your home, she needs to keep her comments to herself. Remind her that you love her son very much, and your desire is to be a good wife to him. If he is pleased with you, that is what matters.

In the meantime, encourage your husband to stand up to her, respectfully, but it is time to be the head of his own home. You can do all this in a dignified way without getting into brawls. Do it with class, but do it.

Signed, Jan

You can write to Jan Kolb at P.O. Box 27545, Prescott Valley, AZ 86312. Or email:

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