Keepitreal asks:

Who should my loyalty go to, my only biological child or my 2nd husband

My 20 year old ONLY child moved out of the house back in June, about 20 miles from the home she grew up in. She wanted to have her freedom. It was an amicable decision. She also works in this side of town. The problem is that my now husband does not approve of her extended visits. Meaning, she'll spend 3-4 consecutive night just to hang out w/ me. She confessed to me that because she works at a retirement home, she sees how elderly folks are just left on their own w/o families visiting them. She fears that I'll have the same demise. Coupled that fear with her enlisting in the Air Force this up coming year only elevates her anxiety. I'm flattered as a mom and reassures her that I'll be fine. My husband on the other hand is irritated by this frequent visits. He claims that it was her decision to move out and that she has to either move back in or limit her visits. I'm this close to kicking HIM out before I limit my child's visit. He also will not tell her of his disapproval of her visits, but rather wants me to tell her since I"m the bio mom. What do I do???? he's asking me to choose and if I do, I'll be remodeling my house to accommodate my daughter.
In Topics: Parenting / Our Family
> 60 days ago



Oct 21, 2010
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What the Expert Says:

Hi There,
It sounds like you may have already made your decision! But before you do, here are a couple of thoughts. Your husband has offered to have your daughter move back in again, so he isn't saying that he dislikes your daughter, rather that the inconsistencey is difficult for him and perhaps he thinks it's not in her best either to be unsure of where her 'home' is....perhaps he's right. I wonder if in fact it is in your daughter's best interest to move back home. She sounds like she may not be quite ready to be living on her own--which is understandable at twenty. Maybe she needed to try it out before she knew that for sure. She may not be willing to admit this to herself (or you), but it sounds like her fears and worries are raising some natural separation issues that might be alleviated if she moves home until entering the Air Force.

I suggest that rather than being angry with your husband, you clear the emotional air and pay attention to what might be best for your daughter and your whole family. Don't become defensive of your daughter, because that may not allow you to meet her emotional needs properly--choosing 'sides isn't the issue here, figuring out what will be the best decision is!
Good Wishes and Great Parenting,
Dr Susan Bartell
JustAsk Expert
Twitter @drsusanbartell
NEW book “The Top 50 Questions Kids Ask”

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Additional Answers (1)

pigtoria writes:
Hi Keepitreal,

Thank you for sharing your story!

I am not in your situation (I do have a seven-year-old son who is also my only child) and I don’t know anyone who is in a similar situation like yours, so it’s difficult for me to imagine the feelings and emotions that you are going through right now.  I cannot make comments to your situation but I can share my thoughts on motherhood and being a mother.

My mother and I don’t really celebrate Mother’s Day on the second Sunday in May.  Our big “Mother’s Day” celebration is – for my mom is my birthday (because I am her firstborn) and for me it’s my son’s birthday.  We usually do something quite elaborate on those birthdays.  Why? Because our child’s birthday made us a mother and hence, shouldn’t the day we become a mother be our “Mother’s Day”?.

I know that you’re in a difficult situation but you need to communicate and let your husband knows that there is no decision to be made now.  The decision was made 21 years ago when you decided to have your daughter, go through the pregnancy, and give birth to your daughter.  There’s a phrase in Chinese that goes “Siblings and children are like our limbs but friends and husbands are like clothing”.  Children are a part of our bodies -this is particularly true for mothers as we’ve all shared our bodies with our children when we were pregnant.  Husbands are clothing in a sense that they are replaceable but we could never replace our children.

Best of luck on your communication and conversation with your husband!

Hope this helps!

> 60 days ago

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