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DearSugar Needs Your Help: I'm Worried For My Daughter

DearSugar Needs Your Help: I'm Worried For My Daughter

DearSugar and Distraught Debbie need your help. Her 28-year-old daughter is involved with a man with a shady past. Although she doesn't doubt his love for her, she's concerned for her future. Do you have any advice for this worried mom?

Dear Sugar,

My daughter has been with her boyfriend for about three years — they are both 28 years old. When he was 17, he was charged with statutory rape (he was dating an underage girl) and he now has a sexual offense on his record. Although he loves her —who wouldn't? she's a beautiful person— I think he's been using her. She's a professional and he is still in school. He works odd jobs to make ends meet while he saves money for his education.

We are upper-middle class, and this has been extremely embarrassing for us. He's an OK guy, but he's very rough around the edges. He comes from a broken home, his mom has kids with three different men, and his dad was in prison. I could easily get past his upbringing, but it's the police record that's a concern. How do my husband and I get our daughter to understand that if she marries him, she'll be marrying his criminal record as well? She will also never be able to live in a "good neighborhood" because of his past mistakes. We don't want to be controlling parents, but we do want the best for our daughter, so what can we do or say to make her understand the severity of this situation?

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Melo-D Melo-D 7 years
I agree with a lot of people... you need to know what the charge is about. He was 17 so the girl was probably 15 and her parents found out, got upset, and pressed charges. He's "rough around the edges" because he had a hard life and people like you are making it harder. Have you ever sat down and talk to him? I know my mother would have sat down and talked to him about his future. The fact that you gave us the details of his upbringing let me know it clearly is something you can't get over. Until you have compassion towards him for things he had NO control over, he might not be the most polite person around you because he can sense how you feel. Did you ever think that one of the things he admires the most about your daughter is what she has accomplished in her life and that's his ambition to get to where he wants to go. I think there are lot of things you need to talk about with him and your daughter together. What does your husband think? He needs to be in on this conversation too. Invite the man over for dinner and talk. I also think you need to learn something about lower middle class and below families and how hard it is for us to get to a better place... especially in this time of recession. Find out more about the man and maybe you'll get a revelation about his future.
LadyAngel89 LadyAngel89 7 years
She's 28, it sounds like you've already said your piece. Nothing change? Too bad... what are you going to do to convince her otherwise alienate her from you or chain her in your bedroom closet and withhold food until she caves and agrees with your synopsis of HER situation (you know the one she's actually living). He could be the scum of the earth, but what can you do? Tell them and hope they figure it out.
LadyAngel89 LadyAngel89 7 years
She's 28, it sounds like you've already said your piece. Nothing change?Too bad... what are you going to do to convince her otherwise alienate her from you or chain her in your bedroom closet and withhold food until she caves and agrees with your synopsis of HER situation (you know the one she's actually living).He could be the scum of the earth, but what can you do? Tell them and hope they figure it out.
dameneko dameneko 7 years
if i were a parent, i would be concerned if my child were dating someone with a criminal record, but as someone from a broken home who didn't come from a good neighborhood, i think your thinly veiled bigotry is uncalled for. take a look at your own attitudes and see if you really aren't more concerned about how this will reflect on YOU. if he's abusing her, i don't care WHAT kind of background he has, you intervene. but if he's not abusing your daughter and you are really just more concerned about your family's image, may you get exactly what you deserve. good luck to your daughter.
linb linb 7 years
@sunshowers: LOL :D
linb linb 7 years
@sunshowers: LOL :D
sunshowers83 sunshowers83 7 years
herbiefrog, wtf are you smoking?!?
herbiefrog herbiefrog 7 years
...and you never mentioned ...the fallen star # "from" hawawii hey babe : ) hope that your memory is good bye...
herbiefrog herbiefrog 7 years
...and you never mentioned ...the fallen star#"from" hawawiihey babe : )hope that your memory is goodbye...
herbiefrog herbiefrog 7 years
to all the strong... youthful... virile... nubile can we stop soon ? ok... can we just do the thing ? oooooffff... so... we'll see you later ?
herbiefrog herbiefrog 7 years
to all the strong...youthful...virile...nubilecan we stop soon ?ok... can we just do the thing ?oooooffff...so... we'll see you later ?
bransugar79 bransugar79 7 years
I just wanted to say that I understand being concerned for your child. I have a mother who would certainly warn me if there were signs of danger in someone I was dating. My mother actually sat down with me to talk about the man I am about to marry just because we met online. Granted that was 12 years ago and she didn't judge she just asked me questions to make me think. She trusts me enough to know that I am a smart person and can make good decisions on my own given the right information. I don't think there is anythign wrong with being worried for your child's safety, but that is not what this woman's problem is. She doesn't like the guy because he came from a "broken family" I know a lot of people who come from two parent homes that turn out to be complete d bags. And being from a poor neighborhood doesn't make you a less worthwhile person. From the information she mentioned in the actual posting without inferrring anything else she said he does work and she admitted that he did love her daughter ( "who wouldn't" after all) so this is about status not concern, and I don't support anyone's right to be biased even when veiled by concern.
russet1 russet1 7 years
I absolutely agree with Svenska. My parents were in the same situation that this daughter is in. My mother came from a "priveledged family" with the snobbiest parents, while my father was the youngest of 9 siblings raised by his single mother in the rough part of a big city. Obviously, my father wasn't "good enough" for my mum, and even at their wedding her parents refused to pose in the pictures. Shortly after that, my parents moved away, and I've grown up without ever meeting my grandparents. And good riddance. Both of my parents are wonderful people, and I would much rather have my dad's mum who can teach me how to be the most unselfish person in the world, who can teach me what sacrifice really is, then have the horrible pigs of grandparents that refuse even to speak to my father. Good riddance. Besides, you love who you love. No one can decide it for you. Lady, if you want to be a part of your daughter's life and her children's, then you need to stop looking down your nose at people who haven't been given everything on a silver platter.
russet1 russet1 7 years
I absolutely agree with Svenska.My parents were in the same situation that this daughter is in. My mother came from a "priveledged family" with the snobbiest parents, while my father was the youngest of 9 siblings raised by his single mother in the rough part of a big city. Obviously, my father wasn't "good enough" for my mum, and even at their wedding her parents refused to pose in the pictures. Shortly after that, my parents moved away, and I've grown up without ever meeting my grandparents. And good riddance. Both of my parents are wonderful people, and I would much rather have my dad's mum who can teach me how to be the most unselfish person in the world, who can teach me what sacrifice really is, then have the horrible pigs of grandparents that refuse even to speak to my father.Good riddance.Besides, you love who you love. No one can decide it for you.Lady, if you want to be a part of your daughter's life and her children's, then you need to stop looking down your nose at people who haven't been given everything on a silver platter.
svenska svenska 7 years
This post has me seeing red. I cannot feel any sympathy towards this problem after statements like this is embarrassing for our family and he's rough around the edges because he comes from a broken home, his mother has children with more than one man and his father was in prison. From my experience this kind of bigotry and elitism always comes from people throwing around the "upper-middle class" card - always trying to prove how much better they are and how they "belong" with the upper class. It alternately makes me laugh at how desperate people can be to act like they're better and it makes me so sad at the fact that there are still large quantities of our population who think socio-economic status makes you a better or happier person than someone who doesn't make as much money. Life is about being happy and living to the fullest and being a good person - money and status will not buy you any of that. I absolutely cannot stand the idea that you're willing to overlook his upbringing, as if he had any choice in the matter, or your allusion to people being from broken homes are rough round the edges. Please, get over yourself. What if this man had been from an equal or higher socio-economic status as your "professional" daughter and still had the upbringing he had? Would you still be worried for your daughter? That kind of statement also implies that people with your daughter's upbringing aren't rough around the edges - and please, as someone who was born into a family with the kind of money that would put you "upper-middle class" snobs to shame, I know for a fact that there are plenty of people that have the "right" upbringing that are rough around the edges, lazy, etc. But what do I know, because it seems like, according to you, I must be rough around the edges too since my dad lost almost all his trust fund when I was 6 (and had to worked harder than he ever did until his father died and he got some inheritance, and even then he still works hard to this day); my parents got divorced and there just wasn't enough money to send two children to a $25k a year elementary school and employ 2 nannies and have 3 horses and pay for my mother to go back to school, so she sent my brother, baby sister and I to live with her parents in Sweden for 7 years; and my father was/is an alcoholic.
svenska svenska 7 years
This post has me seeing red. I cannot feel any sympathy towards this problem after statements like this is embarrassing for our family and he's rough around the edges because he comes from a broken home, his mother has children with more than one man and his father was in prison. From my experience this kind of bigotry and elitism always comes from people throwing around the "upper-middle class" card - always trying to prove how much better they are and how they "belong" with the upper class. It alternately makes me laugh at how desperate people can be to act like they're better and it makes me so sad at the fact that there are still large quantities of our population who think socio-economic status makes you a better or happier person than someone who doesn't make as much money. Life is about being happy and living to the fullest and being a good person - money and status will not buy you any of that.I absolutely cannot stand the idea that you're willing to overlook his upbringing, as if he had any choice in the matter, or your allusion to people being from broken homes are rough round the edges. Please, get over yourself. What if this man had been from an equal or higher socio-economic status as your "professional" daughter and still had the upbringing he had? Would you still be worried for your daughter? That kind of statement also implies that people with your daughter's upbringing aren't rough around the edges - and please, as someone who was born into a family with the kind of money that would put you "upper-middle class" snobs to shame, I know for a fact that there are plenty of people that have the "right" upbringing that are rough around the edges, lazy, etc.But what do I know, because it seems like, according to you, I must be rough around the edges too since my dad lost almost all his trust fund when I was 6 (and had to worked harder than he ever did until his father died and he got some inheritance, and even then he still works hard to this day); my parents got divorced and there just wasn't enough money to send two children to a $25k a year elementary school and employ 2 nannies and have 3 horses and pay for my mother to go back to school, so she sent my brother, baby sister and I to live with her parents in Sweden for 7 years; and my father was/is an alcoholic.
amybdk amybdk 7 years
If you want to push your daughter away, you are on the right track.
linb linb 7 years
I am in this situation, not as the mother, but the daughter. My wonderful boyfriend has a record, he is a felon. So what. He was young and stupid. He is no longer that person. He owns his own business, has goals in life and he is loved by his community, who has no idea about his past. And I am beyond proud to be his girlfriend, and hopefully will one day his wife, mother of his child(ren). Do not judge someone by their past. People make mistakes. Judge him by the person he is today. And if you still disapprove, that is fine. But let your daughter make her own decisions.
linb linb 7 years
I am in this situation, not as the mother, but the daughter. My wonderful boyfriend has a record, he is a felon. So what. He was young and stupid. He is no longer that person. He owns his own business, has goals in life and he is loved by his community, who has no idea about his past. And I am beyond proud to be his girlfriend, and hopefully will one day his wife, mother of his child(ren).Do not judge someone by their past. People make mistakes. Judge him by the person he is today. And if you still disapprove, that is fine. But let your daughter make her own decisions.
WhatTheFrockBlog WhatTheFrockBlog 7 years
Ha! Touche about the caste system, Mascara. I keep coming back to this post because it absolutely enraged me, but your comment is cracking me up. :rotfl: And it is nice to see another Replacements fan 'round these parts.
WhatTheFrockBlog WhatTheFrockBlog 7 years
Ha! Touche about the caste system, Mascara. I keep coming back to this post because it absolutely enraged me, but your comment is cracking me up. :rotfl:And it is nice to see another Replacements fan 'round these parts.
LittleMascara LittleMascara 7 years
Wow, you sound like a stuck up bigoted snobby woman. I'm more happy that your daughter hasn't followed in your footsteps than continue the track of closed minded thinking that has brought you to us today. Some people can't help the situation they were born into and they need to make the best of it. I'd be cutting this dude a little more slack, as opposed to "looking past" his upbringing. The only thing I can't look past in this post, is the way you portrayed her boyfriend. I can't get past that enough to even try and answer your question. Good luck. I guess we should just adopt a caste system so we can't date up OR down. That way each and every upper middle suburban mother will never have to have a nightmare like this on their hands...
LittleMascara LittleMascara 7 years
Wow, you sound like a stuck up bigoted snobby woman. I'm more happy that your daughter hasn't followed in your footsteps than continue the track of closed minded thinking that has brought you to us today. Some people can't help the situation they were born into and they need to make the best of it. I'd be cutting this dude a little more slack, as opposed to "looking past" his upbringing. The only thing I can't look past in this post, is the way you portrayed her boyfriend. I can't get past that enough to even try and answer your question. Good luck. I guess we should just adopt a caste system so we can't date up OR down. That way each and every upper middle suburban mother will never have to have a nightmare like this on their hands...
Indigo4320 Indigo4320 7 years
I understand where you are coming from completely. Forget his upbringing...while it's awful, it doesn't mean he's anything like his family. BUT the sex offense on his record would draw the line for me. Maybe he was "in puppy love" with the underage and vice versa and her parents found out and decided to take a legal stance. You see that happen a lot. It could be she was only a year or so younger. So it might not mean he's a bad guy altogether but he knew the consequences for hooking up with a minor and now he's paying the price. You can't tell your daughter what to do, I mean she's nearing 30 and will be wanting to really start her life soon. She may think this guy is it for her and if that's the case you telling her not to be with him will probably send her running in his direction even harder. I know you're worried about her future and if I were you, I'd be just as worried. There is really nothing you can do. Just don't push your daughter away if she does marry this guy. You'll just have to swallow your embarassment and be there for her. Good luck!
Indigo4320 Indigo4320 7 years
I understand where you are coming from completely. Forget his upbringing...while it's awful, it doesn't mean he's anything like his family. BUT the sex offense on his record would draw the line for me. Maybe he was "in puppy love" with the underage and vice versa and her parents found out and decided to take a legal stance. You see that happen a lot. It could be she was only a year or so younger. So it might not mean he's a bad guy altogether but he knew the consequences for hooking up with a minor and now he's paying the price. You can't tell your daughter what to do, I mean she's nearing 30 and will be wanting to really start her life soon. She may think this guy is it for her and if that's the case you telling her not to be with him will probably send her running in his direction even harder. I know you're worried about her future and if I were you, I'd be just as worried. There is really nothing you can do. Just don't push your daughter away if she does marry this guy. You'll just have to swallow your embarassment and be there for her.Good luck!
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