Life Advice


Health & Spirit

Man is cast in Tennessee Williams domestic drama

By Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Be aware, however, that you seem to have wandered into the plot of a Tennessee Williams play. Simply put, "Girlfriend" and "Sister" were locked into this family system before you came along, and they will still be in this relationship after you're gone. Their relationship outranks yours, and because they are anchored to their own toxic dance, you can either dance along with them, or reclaim your own independence and love your gal from a distance.

You don't mention how (or where) Girlfriend lived before her husband died; learning more about that dynamic might lead you to your own answers.

Dear Amy: I have been taking care of my elderly mother for eight years. She is 84, had a stroke and is confined to a wheelchair. She needs extensive care and lives in a nearby nursing facility.

My mother is a priority for me and I visit her almost every day. I participate in activities and volunteer at the nursing facility so as to be a part of her life.

I do her laundry and bring her anything she needs. I hold her power of attorney, as well.

The problem is that my brother and sister-in-law are always butting into my husband's and my business.

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We are condemned and criticized for buying a home and we are judged for what we do with our money.

My husband is a disabled veteran who served in Vietnam, and we do what we can in our lives to make each day the best. My brother and his wife do very little to help with Mom, because their lives are all about them.

How can I stop them from minding my business and making sarcastic remarks to us whenever we decide to do something for ourselves?

-- Sick of Critique


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