The big question I need to ask you… 327



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When I met Harry I was divorced, was an empty nester, had three beautiful children and one gorgeous grandchild. Harry was much the same. We didn’t have the kind of relationship that set the world on fire, but we were happy together. Our companionship over three years did turn into love and right now I couldn’t imagine my life without him. But we have a problem… One that is quite big.

My adult children have always been incredibly close to me. We have a great relationship but recently I can’t help but feel their opinions are unwelcome. We’ve discussed marriage and they can’t seem to understand why we’d want to at this age. They don’t think us living together is the best idea either as they believe we need to stay financially and socially separate too.

I accept that these are both valid points and questions that people need to ask themselves at any age no matter what relationship they’re in. But I can’t help but feel they are overstepping the mark a little. Am I right? Or do I need to listen to them?

Families are unusual things. As parents, we go through life guiding our children’s’ decisions by sharing our own opinions and judgment to hopefully shape theirs. But as we age, do we just have to expect that the tables will turn and they will soon be the ones critiquing our judgment?

I have had friends who have had huge falling outs with their children. One was getting re-married to someone who he had only met less than a year ago. His children believed she was after his money so she could leave her own children inheritance. And although the situation was a little suspicious, their attitude left them without the support of their father and their own children without the love of a grandfather.

But if we continue to stand up to our children when they question our judgment and we don’t do what they suggest, can we only expect it to end sourly? Or is there a way to discuss things from adult child to adult parent without overstepping our personal boundaries?

I’ve read into this a little just with a few Google searches and there seems to be a lot of people who have struggled with this same dilemma too. Some say that as long as you can tell your children aren’t trying to influence your decisions to better their own position, be it financially or emotionally (some were against the idea of parents making a treechange or seachange as they wanted them around for support) they should be listened to.

Whereas others have said that the child-parent relationship dynamics shouldn’t really ever change and that younger generations of any family structure shouldn’t feel their opinions and thoughts take precedence over the older generations.

But today I want to know, what do you think is the right thing to do or the right way to handle it? How would you approach it if you were in my shoes?

Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. You dont sound like a stupid person so why are your children treating you as though you are. You are capable of making your own life decisions. Take on board any advice they wish to give you and make the decision that best suits you

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    • Follow your heart BUT all money & assets should be legally tied , and the same with his assets & money. Therefore if there are any problems later on, you both walk away and still have your money & assets. As for the children, ask them what you should do, do they want you to ‘live’ with them or be happy with your chosen partner – query their partners and work it all out. Good luck!

    • Do not rush take your time get good legal advice remember your children are adults not little children any more so be careful in decision makeing what ever you do treat your children equal otherwise there will be troubles I know it happen in my family and there were winners and loosers sisters and brothers are never the same again best advice to give is. In your will treat all adult children Equal give them the same amount of money

  2. I am sure your children have made their own choices so do what you feel is the best thing for you . Tell your children how much you love them but you deserve to be happy in your life so make your choice that suits you best . You are only here once so enjoy your life .

  3. Children are quite selfish these days, they don’t seem to worry about their parents happiness just their inheritance!!

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  4. My husband & I separated in 2001 (in our mid 50’s) after 33 years, but didn’t divorce, as both of us were sure that we didn’t intend to ever re-marry. Fighting over money was not worth the mental anguish from my perspective. My husband then died in earky 2003 & our children inherited his estate & super, as we had a verbal agreement between us when we separated, & then a Will to cover this when he got sick. A second relationship of 5 years resulted in the loss of $100,000, although we had a legal agreement drawn up. To me at the time, the loss of money was less important than getting out of the relationship & cutting ties, for my own peace of mind. A legal agreement may help with your issue, depending on your circumstances. Talking with a Solicitor may assist with your final decision so that all are happy. But I have always sought & valued the advice of my children & do consider their opinions when making decisions. In the end though, it is always my final decision. I am content to not have another live-in relationship to protect myself from further loss. Good luck with this , & stay true to yourself..

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  5. You do what feels right for you,your children are adults now and have lives of their own,they surely want you to be happy.

  6. If you give in to your children just for peace, eventually they will forget and get on with their lives. And regardless of how close you are, it will be you who is alone. I think you sit down and explain how you feel. Have they had a problem with Harry before you brought up the marriage thing? If not, then why now? He is still the same person, you are still the same person. Make it quite clear you are older but your judgement is the same as it was a year or two ago. Ask them to tell you exactly why they feel that way and if they can’t give you a valid reason, go ahead and do what you think is best. If it is a financial reason, take steps to make your future secure. You need to be happy too.

  7. Ooh – tricky one, but really this should not be about what your children want. You deserve to be happy, and if this is what you both want then they should be happy for you. Of course they are entitled to raise any concerns with you, and indeed they should, but if you can comfortably address these yourself then they need to accept this is your choice. I am sure they would accept your decision in time, but they are probably most worried about how this might affect life as they know it now. Would they like it if the situation was reversed and you were objecting to one of them moving into a new relationship? Follow your heart, and best wishes to you.

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