Life Advice


Health & Spirit

Do disadvantaged parents deserve warm winters?

By Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Dear Amy: My mother raised six children during her lifetime. She chose to be a stay-at-home mom, although my father barely made enough to keep us afloat.

As soon as we turned 13, we were told to find a money source because we would be responsible for our tuition at private school.

This did not kill us. In fact, it made us responsible people.

Now that my parents are older for some reason my mother likes to guilt us for our father's lack of initiative in providing her with a better lifestyle.

She has told me that as her children she would think that we could provide winters in Florida for them to enjoy warmer weather, and that we could all afford this since we enjoy trips with our families and do not feel the need to invite them along.

I am at a loss for words when she starts on these tirades. What I want to say is right on the tip of my tongue, which I bite every time. My mother made her choices a long time ago. How should I reply?


-- Upset

Dear Upset: I realize that your question is really about your mother, and yet your attitude mirrors her bitterness and entitlement. Although you claim to have turned out well, you seem to have felt financially abandoned by your parents.

You don't say how many children you have raised from scratch, but being a full-time parent to six children is no easy job. It would be nice if you found a way to acknowledge both of your parents' efforts, even if you have found them to be inadequate.

You and your siblings are not duty-bound to provide winters in Florida for your parents. Nor should you sign up for a guilt trip, courtesy of your mother.


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