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You Asked: My Parents Hate My Boyfriend

Dear Sugar,

For the past two years, I've been dating a 28-year-old man who has two kids; I'm 22. Things have been difficult from the start because my parents, who love me dearly, do not approve of my boyfriend. They want me to graduate from college, get a job, and have an amazing future. To them, that also means finding a different man to be with; they are not OK with the fact that he never went to college and has two children.

Things eventually got so bad that I moved out of their house and went to live with my boyfriend. Now I have a lot of feelings of guilt in regards to my parents. Before I moved out they were paying for college, my car, and things like books and gas. I'm an excellent student, but I decided to take this semester off because I am so exhausted. My parents are adamant that I go back to school, but they said they are not willing to help me financially unless I break up with my boyfriend and move back home.

Needless to say, my parents are something my boyfriend and I argue about. One time during a bad argument, he called my dad and started swearing at him on the phone. Since then my dad has told me that he'll never accept my boyfriend. My mom is also worried, and she's lost a lot of weight. I'm so torn; I don't know what to do. Please help!

— Disapproved of Deena

To see DearSugar's answer,


Dear Disapproved of Deena,

It certainly sounds like there's more than a healthy amount of stress surrounding your relationship, and I'm sorry to hear that it's having such a terrible effect on your family. I'm glad that you realize that your parents are looking out for your well-being, and honestly, I think it's normal for parents to worry if their child has temporarily abandoned college to live with a man already burdened with responsibilities of fatherhood. That said, their reactions sound very extreme, and I have to wonder if there's more to this story than meets the eye.

If you want your parents to take your relationship seriously, I think you need to take their concerns seriously. Sit down with them and discuss in no uncertain terms what their biggest issues are. If they're worried about the effect your boyfriend has had on your schooling, then prove to them that you will enroll next semester with the intention of going full-time until graduation, and consider moving into your own apartment.

If their issues specifically revolve around your boyfriend's character, then I advise to you contemplate their concerns closely. It's possible they're being irrational, and if that's the case, you can feel confident that being with your boyfriend is the right decision. But it's also very likely that their fears are legitimate, and you have to consider that, too. Unfortunately, in a situation like this one, it will be impossible to please both parties without compromising something in your own life. Now is the time to start making decisions that are best for your future.


Jennifer2980408 Jennifer2980408 5 years
I found they’re producing a television show about this topic, and they’re still looking for participants. Seems pretty interesting…  
Andrea69 Andrea69 8 years
Me and my boyfriend have been dating for 10 months now. I know its not a long time but. I have been through allot. I am 24 and I am really close to my family. All my previous boyfriend liked my parents and wanted to spend time at my house. We currently live at his moms. She is never home and its just me and him. I always want to spend time with him, but he never wants to hang out with them at all and when I want to he says "why do we always have to hang out with your family its not like we are married" My parents don't even want him around anymore and that makes me sad. I always have to make an excuse to them when he doesn't come and I'm tired of it but I really like him. Anyway my question is, is it because his parents arn't together and that his family isn't close and I'm the first girl he has ever brought home?
JaimeLeah526 JaimeLeah526 9 years
My husbands parents were sorta like this but they are so passive-aggressive that they bought a house for us and pay our bills but still make him pay for college because we moved up here and he's not going to the college every semester because we can't afford it since he's got to work. He took one semester off and then went back for 2 years and they still refuse to pay for it even though they pay for his sister to go no matter how long she goes. They are so annoying and there really is nothing we can do about it.
ilanac13 ilanac13 9 years
that's definitely a tough thing - to have such adversity about your boyfriend. i think that the advice here is good - to really sit down with your parents and discuss things - don't use raised voices and really talk out how they feel about things and how you feel about things. there are times that you're just not going to agree on how you live your life but at least if you make the effort - then perhaps they can see past things. it's also hard - cause you're probably going to want your parents in your life if you plan a wedding or have a family of your own - aside from the financial burden that you're going through - and to have then at a point where they don't want to help you or talk to you overly much - that's just not helpful to anyone...and it's not healthy for anyone. i also think that your boyfriend really needs to learn to respect your parents - if he's swearing at your father - then that's just immature and that's not helping the situation at all. if he were to make an effort as well - that would probably help build some type of relationship with everyone.
htt3h2e htt3h2e 9 years
I think the reason why they want you to break it off with your boyfriend is because they think he has a bad influence on you. Clearly, he has. You're so infatuated by him that you're throwing your future away. You know how many people wish they could afford college but they can't. Since you have the financial help and you're a good student, you have a whole future ahead of you. Why waste it on a guy who doesn't know the first thing about respect?
ckeller825 ckeller825 9 years
Sweetie, I cannot believe your boyfriend did that to your parents. That's straight up disrespect, and why would you want to be with a "man" who does that to the parents of the "girl he loves"? I can understand where your parents are coming from, and as much as they might have bashed him, he could have had a chance to redeem himself, despite his baggage. I don't want to sound like an old woman, but as a 25 yr old who KIND OF went through the same situation at 21, you need to respect all that your parents have done for you in hopes that you will have a successful life. And as a parent, to see their child throw their life away by skipping a semester or two of school for a man who has a limited education and has two children AND cursed at them is like a stab in the heart. I hope you realize what is going on. Get a heart and do something for your parents, like they've done for you for your entire life, and pick your life back up. You will regret it if you don't.
tomatoshirt tomatoshirt 9 years
Is your bf worth all these drama? if so, then stick with it. if not, break it off soon.
skigurl skigurl 9 years
god, i would never date a guy who swore at my family they obviously have good reason not to like him
LoveSarah LoveSarah 9 years
Dump the boyfriend, he sounds like a loser.
BryPouncy BryPouncy 9 years
This is simple. Your parents pay for your college. Respect that. Your boyfriend cussed out the parents who pay for your college. Don't respect that. You're a good student with a high future. "I" respect that. He dropped out of college and has 2 kids with hardly a future. "I" don't respect that. If you want respect from others. You have to earn it. You're parents want what's best for you. And you're being a child by the way you're acting. You're 22. Act like it.
agrepina agrepina 9 years
i completely disagree with lickety split.. is she really is a "responsible adult capable of making her own decisions" then she should get a job and pay for her own college,car and everything else her parents took care she lives in their house she has to live by their rules..which she decided she didnt want to she shouldn't really complain about them wanting her to move back to start heloing her out financially.. im completely siding with the parents on this one.. and the nerves he has calling your matter how much i love someone..thats a BIG No No!!
tiggles101 tiggles101 9 years
Does he love you and do you love him?
ragedyfairy ragedyfairy 9 years
I think you’ll be running back home to mommy and daddy once you find out how expensive it is to make it in the real world. Have you not been paying attention to the news lately? Students are struggling to even get student loans these days. You don’t even know how blessed you are to have parents who are able to pay for everything. Don’t take them for granted. And God forbid now that you are living together that you end up pregnant. What kind of life are you and this man going to have without college degrees? Your parents don’t want you to have a hard life. Cause let me tell you, that’s exactly what your headed for with a man with 2 kids and no college degree.
bluestar bluestar 9 years
Friends and parents can often see issues that you are over looking when the love bug bites. Since your boyfriend knew that your parents were having issues with him, I would think that someone that knew what a healthy relationship looks like, would try his best to get along with them, not aggravate the situation further by calling your dad and cussing at him. Obviously your boyfriend needs to grow up a bit...or A LOT, and you need to have an honest discussion with your parents. Get back in school's hard to get back into it once you leave.
Vaadsfweytes Vaadsfweytes 9 years
I disagree with Lickety Split. I went through a disproved relationship with my ex in high school for 4 whole years. After starting college, I broke up with him and started dating many other guys. And, surprise, my parents cannot be anymore supportive of me dating around meeting more responsible and mature guys. I did think for years that my parents tried to control me with money. Because, even the college I wanted to go to, they told me by saying if I don't go to the college they think is the best, they would not pay for the tuition. However, now I know that they just wanted me to have a good future. Major I decided to study because of them, I realized that's my path, and all the guys I've dated since my break up with ex, they all turned out to be wonderful. All the prejudices aside, if you can have an equally wonderful and loving man with better future, better job, and no child, why would you lower your standards?
RockAndRepublic RockAndRepublic 9 years
So, he cursed out your parents and you're standing by [i]his[/i] side? Geez! Since he has two kids, i doubt he could give you anything for college or for you to buy yourself a clue. Find a job, btw.
CYL CYL 9 years
Here's an idea...get a part time job and go back to school and pay your own way. Or get a student loan and pay your way through school. Plenty of people do it...sounds like you want to be treated as an adult by your parents. Well you need to act like one. And I agree with the others...does your boyfriend see his kids? Does he pay child support? And under no circumstances should your bf have called up your dad and swore at him! Your parents love you and are concerned for your well being. Sit down with them and discuss the issue like a mature adult...
kidsaway2002 kidsaway2002 9 years
I read what you wrote. I can tell you already know your own answer. You were raised in a solid environment. Trust your instincts. Tell people you care about them. Admit your mistakes. Follow your dreams.
lickety-split lickety-split 9 years
speaking as the mother of 3 daughters and someone who's own mother hated my husband for the first 10 years of our marriage and caused MANY difficulities for our family; your parents are out of line. they raised you, and if they did their job you are now a responsible adult capable of making her own decisions. they won't like all of your choices but they need to back off and let you live your life. you will make some mistakes, you will make some great discoveries, you will live YOUR LIFE as you see fit. they had their turn to choose partners. they had their turn as the primary influance in your life. now it's your turn. the thing that bothers me the most is your parents insisting that you move home and break things off with the boy friend before they pay for your education and living expenses. that is so offensive to me. they are trying to buy your life from you, the ultimate control. if i were you i would write my parents a note telling them that you love them and appreciate them and all they have done but that you have made your life choice and you have a family now. either they accept you and him and the kids or they don't; easy. then you will see if what they really love is you, their daughter, or the person they wanted to force you to be for their needs. if i were you i would be furious at my parents. as for the boy friends calling your dad and going off on him; that really should have been your job, w/o the swearing.
g1amourpuss g1amourpuss 9 years
I'm also wondering if you're drinking or partying too much or with this guy or if he's just living it up. (It doesn't sound like you spilled it all in your letter.) I'm all about some good fun on the side when the time is appropriate, but to just up and go live with him -- I hope it's because you love him and see a real future with him. Also, do you have a stable job? I mean, you can still play around and cut up in college when things aren't so serious. If you're used to your parents just handing you things, like it sounds like, I've got to tell you - life isn't always a party and it is tough out here. Especially for starters. (I've had to start over and over and over again. Listen to me and these girls with experience.)
marcella marcella 9 years
I hope you realize that this relationship is a bad decision before it is too late. If you needed time off from school, that is understandable. You said yourself that you are an excellent student... and now you have basically dropped out and shacked up with a 28 year old guy with no education and no future. Your parents are concerned because they don't recognize you right now. You are not the same lovely excellent student that they have known and loved for 22 years. They see that they only thing that has changed is this new scumbag boyfriend and they are blaming him. I think you need to examine why you have made these life choices and decisions. Are you tired of working hard and doing well? Do you feel pressured because you are graduating soon? I don't think you are being completely honest with yourself at the moment and are using your boyfriend as an excuse. You need to have a real conversation with your parents and move out of the loser's house.
sarah_bellum sarah_bellum 9 years
If, under any circumstances at all, a man I was dating had the nerve to call up my father and swear at him, it would be over no matter what. Are you going to teach your daughter to tolerate that kind of behavior towards you from some dirtbag she brings home one day? That kind of behavior is not an 'incident'. It is an example of a HUGE lack of character. I feel for your parents, and I think they did the right thing by cutting you off.
geebers geebers 9 years
Why doesn't he say anything about your going back to school? Does he not want you to be educated? I mean if this is a good relationship his priority should be you (well after his kids of course). He should want you to be a good role model for his children. Disrespecting your parents regardless of what they are like is absolutely not cool. These are your parents and he should have enough sense to suck up to them and prove to them that he is worth your time! Instead he has just shown that he is not.
SusanTeufel SusanTeufel 9 years
My husband dislikes my parents a lot, and I love them but don't like them, but he would never disrespect them. If he isn't above disrespecting him now, what about when you get married, have babies?
g1amourpuss g1amourpuss 9 years
Oh yeah, and I'm sorry but I just can't get over the fact that you're allowing him to cuss your father out. I mean seriously. I don't have the highest respect for my father, but if my MAN cussed my father out, I'd deck his fk'n lights out [before my father got to him]!
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