My mother’s having sex with my best friend’s father: Ask Ellie
Q: I’m a girl, 16, in high school, asking how to tell my mother she’s behaving like an idiot. All my close friends agree, because she’s making a fool of herself and ruining my life. At school, random kids now gossip about us. Even my history teacher asked if there’s anything I want to talk to her about!
No way could I tell her that my mother’s having sex with my best friend’s father!! We can hardly talk now because we hate this so much!
My dad’s also an idiot who left us five years ago. I knew that my mom sometimes had dinner with my friend’s dad after his wife died a couple of years ago. Practically the whole school went to the funeral!
My mother says we’re all moving to a new place to start fresh. I just walked out and slammed the door after telling her that she’s ruined my life!!
Do you have advice for something this stupid?
A: You surely needed to vent strong feelings about all this! High school’s already a complicated time but your mother’s new relationship has drawn everyone’s attention.
That’ll change. What’s happened is pretty normal: A woman passed away, her husband was on his own with a daughter, a female friend comforted him. All still normal. Now, they’re planning to help each other by giving their daughters a family home. That, too, can become normal.
It all feels awkward because it’s new. But it’s not happening without your having a chance to adapt and discover what you need in this new situation.
Things will feel a lot better if you and your friend ignore school gossip and recognize the benefits of living together as besties. Give it time.
Q: We gained sole custody of a school-aged grandchild, who has always resided with us. We did this when we found she was in danger.
What should we tell new friends when they assume that we are just a babysitter?
Usually we state that she lives with us. We also need to find the right words to explain to the child our legal status as her custodial parents soon.
The remaining parent has visitation rights and is dishonest when speaking about our status to others.
We want to be honest and brief.
A: You must’ve gained sole custody through the court system after presenting good reasons related to the danger to which your grandchild faced. And the law agreed with you.
With the truth as your goal, you only have to say that she’s now legally in your custody. You can be proud of that fact. She’s lucky to have your protective care and guidance.
Since you don’t mention her age, I can only suggest that the right words to explain her legal status to her should be about love and security in your home.
If she’s too young to fully understand, or if she’s sad and upset about not living with the remaining parent, you might seek the advice of a social worker or counsellor, which may also be offered through the court system.