Life Advice



Ask Amy: Troubled son keeps coming back for more

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Any suggestions?

– Sad Mom

Dear Sad: Your son does not seem to have adequate control over his own life – do not let him control yours.

You are not a criminal. You’ve done nothing wrong. Your son’s vicious statements and behavior are the actions of someone who feels entitled and is willing to be ruthlessly manipulative to get what he wants.

You saved his bacon once; now it’s his turn to take full responsibility for consequences flowing from his own choices.

If removing him from your will helps you to feel in control of your role in his life, then – do that.


Yes, he does sound like an ungrateful brat, but you should not expect gratitude unless or until he bottoms out, runs out of options, and faces an actual and proportional reckoning.

He will always be your son. You don’t need to like him, but I hope you will be able to continue to love him – even from a distance.

Unless a family function is being held at your son’s home, then he doesn’t get to tell you to stay away. Otherwise, you should go wherever you want to go, regardless of the relationship.

Dear Amy: I'm a 70-something mother of two adult sons and an adult daughter. I have health issues. My will was set up with each of my three kids getting one-third of my estate.


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