Ask Amy: This relationship really needs a payday
Dear Amy: I am involved with a recently divorced man.
“Steve” has two children (both adults).
I have four children — also grown and out of the home.
Steve’s marriage was over before I met him.
Steve and I operate a small but very successful business together.
Here's the problem: Steve’s 19-year-old daughter works for us.
She gets paid for 40 hours a week, even though she only works about 25 hours, at most.
Steve makes sure her phone is paid for, has bought her a very expensive laptop, and has bought her a brand-new luxury model car. (She now expects a new one.)
We pay her health insurance.
She lives in her boyfriend’s house. Her boyfriend’s parents own the house, and her rent is way below market price.
If I bring up to Steve that I think we help her way too much, I'm the bad guy.
Am I wrong in not wanting to help her so much?
I also need to add that I do not get a paycheck, nor do I have any money unless I ask Steve for it.
All while his daughter constantly tells her father that she won't do anything for him.
I am just now putting my foot down about being brought into all decisions being made.
I love him and want to stay, but am I just wasting my remaining happy years on nothing?
– Marred in Maine
Dear Marred: You criticize “Steve’s” daughter for being entirely dependent on her father, and yet you are, too.
The difference between you and this young woman is she is not working hard but is still receiving compensation; you are working hard — but are not getting paid.
You might ask her for tips on how to pry a paycheck out of her father.
Steve’s daughter comes first. If she is entitled and spoiled, then he helped to create this monster, and a monster she will remain – at least for the next few years.
Many small businesses rely on family members to provide hours of free labor, but according to you, the business you and Steve operate is successful. Your choice to work for free is a true head-scratcher.
If one of your adult children described a situation where they were deeply ensconced in a personal and business relationship identical to yours, what advice would you give?
My point is that you should take a long and careful look at your own situation and ask yourself if you are with someone who is controlling the women in his life through money.
Dear Amy: Recently, my family and I attended a church that was not our home parish, and we did not know the members.
The family in front of me was sitting on their pew as I knelt from behind.
The position I was in gave me a close-up view of the blond long-haired teenage girl sitting directly below my gaze.
She clearly had two lice nits affixed to her hair (shining from the bright overhead lights).
In my experience as a teacher for 37 years, I have encountered this situation numerous times, but on those occasions, I had sent the child to the nurse without having to discuss the reason (a phone call was made to the nurse prior to child's arrival).
I would never intentionally embarrass someone or bring something unpleasantly personal to their attention.
Yes, lice tend to visit "clean hair," but that doesn't help to alleviate the discomfort of it.
I chose to say nothing and now I wonder if I should have vocalized the information.
There were five other long-haired girls in the family and my concern now is that they might become infected, also.
What would you have done?
– Second Guessing My Silence
Dear Second Guessing: I wouldn’t have done anything.
If you were a dermatologist and noticed a potentially serious growth on the back of a head in the pew in front of you (located in a place where a person couldn’t see it), then you should speak up.
But nits don’t necessarily become lice. And lice aren’t a serious threat to life and limb (as you know).
Dear Amy: Thank you for sticking up for the teenager who brought his “lovey” to his grandmother’s house [“Embarrassed Gran”].
I am a married dad and I’ve had my stuffed panda in my room since, well, since forever.
I guess this goes against the grain, gender-wise, but I’m cool with it, and my kids seem to feel the same way.
Dear Secure: It seems that your panda has done a very good job.
©2021 Amy Dickinson. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.