dear amy: My son, age 15, has been playing baseball at a high level since childhood. There is no doubt that he is talented.
A few years ago, his coach told us that he believed our son had great potential. My wife understood this and believed that he could play a professional role one day.
I am more skeptical.
Our son suffered a serious injury last spring, tearing a tendon. The surgery was painful and his recovery is slow.
Given how this has been for all of us, I would like him to re-evaluate his involvement. My wife and his coach believe he should continue.
This has become a point of tension in our family, so I’m looking forward to your objective opinion.
– worried dad
Dear Dad: Overall, I think it’s wise to re-evaluate everything – always! Maturing involves consciously reviewing one’s choices.
So, yes, I am in favor of revaluation. But your son is 15 years old. He is old enough to decide whether he wants to continue or not, and can accept whatever outcome comes as per his choice.
As a parent, you should always leave the door open for him to decide – for himself – what he wants to do.
This includes continuing his game, pausing, or continuing now and pausing later.
dear amy:My husband and I retired to a wonderful southwestern town. Our two adult children are married and live in other parts of the country. Each of them has small children.
During the pandemic, my son, daughter-in-law and granddaughter were alone in Florida, with no relatives nearby – as were we.
After the pandemic, we decided we should move to Florida to help them, and in return, they will be there for us as we grow older.
They were also excited and encouraged us to buy a house near them. We bought a house (over FaceTime!), sold our second house, gave up our local clubs and activities, and moved.
We immediately realized we made a mistake and we didn’t like living in Florida.
We assumed that we would become an integral part of our children’s lives, but they had completely different expectations. We only babysat twice in six months!
After six months, we moved back to the southwest.
We are now working on resuming our old life, but my daughter-in-law no longer calls us or attends calls to any extent.
I know we made hasty decisions that resulted in hurt and bad feelings. I also know that our expectations were unrealistic. However, I would love to resume my relationship with my daughter-in-law.
Our son is very social and is usually eager to have our granddaughter on FaceTime with us. I hesitate to call my daughter-in-law directly. I don’t want to make matters worse.
We should not be the only people suffering from “pandemic panic” who made hasty decisions!
dear regrettable: people make mistakes. People make mistakes. It seems you are being somewhat lazy, but you apparently have the means to undo this option.
Your face also seems to have undergone rapid transformation; It’s a quick “Whoopsie…we’re out!”
Surely you can imagine how heartbroken your son and his wife would be at your recent behavior.
Write a letter or email to your daughter-in-law. Acknowledge your embarrassment and apologize for the impact your choices have had on them.
Say, “We are at a point in our lives where we are trying our best to do what is best for us. I think the experience during the pandemic scared us and we were too hasty in our decision to move to Florida.
“We have recovered and are happy, but I am embarrassed and upset by the impact our choices have had on you. I know we took a hasty decision which has resulted in hurt sentiments. We love you and really want to make this right, so I hope you can forgive us. I really miss our contact with you. I hope you will communicate with us when you feel ready. You can express your feelings or frustrations and we will listen.”
Dear Amy: “Dog Tired” describes a scenario that sounds like the making of a Judge Judy case.
The most frequently heard cases on that show include 1) dog attacks, and 2) bridezillas. The exhausted dog should wash its hands of the situation and let the groomer deal with the consequences of injuries/damage caused by badly behaved dogs.
Dear reader: I agree! Perhaps wedding invitations for this special event should be addressed to “future suitor.”
You can email Amy Dickinson at [email protected] or send a letter to Ask Amy, PO Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068. You can also follow her on Twitter @askingamy or Facebook.
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