Life Advice



Ask Amy: Relationship’s in trouble if values don’t align

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

The answer is: no.

Are your personal choices affecting his children? Probably. (At the very least, their father’s confusion or sadness will affect his behavior toward them.)

I assume you are making efforts to protect yourself and your boyfriend from STDs, but is it healthy to hook up with multiple sexual partners during a pandemic?

Probably not.

Dear Amy: Our almost 12-year-old niece has announced to the family that her preferred pronouns are now they/them. They now wish to be called a name typically used for boys.

This has been met with open-armed support from the parents, consistent with their laissez faire approach to parenting.


I often find myself reacting to their style of parenting (i.e., running wild in restaurants) in a judgmental way, so it’s hard for me to separate what is good for their daughter in terms of guidance versus letting the child use another, possibly temporary, way to control the whole family.

Does a good Auntie, who has generally been a rare authoritative figure in the child’s life, jump into their gender experimenting wholeheartedly, or does a good Auntie stick with tradition (using her birth name) until it’s more obvious that the child is indeed not cisgender?

– Good Auntie

Dear Auntie: You don’t get to decide another person’s gender, even if you suspect this declaration is a temporary experiment.


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