Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

My parents are freaking out about my dating life.

Home Forums Advice & Chat My parents are freaking out about my dating life.

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  • #1110638 Reply

    I’ll try to keep this short.

    I lived at home until 25. Wasn’t allowed to date in high school and barely in college. (Though, a busy schedule and no asking suitors never gave me the opportunity to anyway.) I also wasn’t allowed to have sex, because my parents were, essentially, afraid of me bringing secondhand sexual fluids back home and just didn’t want sexually active adults in their home.

    I lived like this, not thinking this was the healthiest, but dealing with it anyway until some kind of bubble of realization popped in me a year ago and I realized how much life experience I just did not have and wanted. This and other reasons made me say fuck it, find a job, save up, and move out over a year ago.

    I’ve been dating since then, first time in my life. It’s pretty startling to go from never holding hands before to navigating the dating world, but so far, I would say I’ve done well. I met one guy who I really liked, but all in all, it didn’t work out. In my naive excitement — and because I still love my parents and want to tell them about my life, and also I didn’t really have anyone else to share my excitement with — I told them about this guy. It wasn’t explicitly said but I’m sure they gleamed this was a sexual relationship as well.

    My reveal at a family brunch about my dating this guy was met with my mother trying to be respectful and supportive about it, but asking a litany of nervous questions about him in all phone convos for weeks afterward, along with several requests for them to meet him. (I said no — too early for Meet the Parents.) As for my dad at the brunch, he grinned his way through the reveal and deflected with jokes and changing the conversation’s topic quickly.

    After him, some time later, I met the guy I’m with now, the one I love to bits and have been in a relationship with for some time now, getting real close to him, and getting to the point where I think a family meeting is in order. Told my parents this, and same reaction. But this time, more weirdness from my dad. He seemed more bothered though he still accepted to meet this guy.

    Leading to now. I had a phone conversation with my dad where we started arguing about something totally unrelated. To which he threw in the comment:

    “Don’t think you know everything now, especially because you got dick in you and now you feel like you’re grown and you don’t have to listen to common sense.”

    This, on top of previous comments made by mom, politely but clearly insinuating that her and my dad want me to be safe and basically had concerns about me being with so many men at my age. (Keep in mind, sexually, it’s only been 2, which I don’t think is that much? The rest have been get-to-know-you coffee and restaurant dates that didn’t fruition to much.)

    At first, I was pissed but the comment didn’t bristle me in particular. He’s said similar things before. But thinking about it lately, it seems a tad fucked up to me, and how my parents have been reacting overall. Why are they reacting this way? Should I go through the Meet the Parents meeting?

    Welp, I couldn’t keep this short, but any advice anyone could give is ‘ppreciated.

    #1110640 Reply

    I don’t think it is appropriate for a father to say something like that to his child. Seems rather anger-driven to me.

    Are you an only child? perhaps that is why they see the need to be so protective of you.

    #1110641 Reply

    No, huge red flags here, that is so disgusting and inappropriate, the stuff about sexual fluids, sexually active adults in the home, dick in you (!!!!!), there’s something so rotten and wrong with your parents, I am not exaggerating when I say absolutely do not introduce your boyfriend to them. Probably ever. Again, this is so, so, disgusting and perverted and wrong, I strongly recommend you work with a therapist if you’re not already, to navigate this. Seriously do not even think about just walking your boyfriend into this. Talk to someone licensed.

    #1110642 Reply

    Also, I don’t know what’s really going on with you, but you wrote in several times just a few months ago and you still lived with your parents. If you want accurate advice, be accurate.

    The sexual fluids reference reminded me of the letter about your grossly abusive father kicking your sister out for being sexually active and saying he didn’t want her sexual fluids on the family washcloths or something. I went back and looked it up, and yeah.




    #1110643 Reply

    Wow, I immediately remembered the other posts you’ve made. This is not normal, and you need to leave. We’ve said it before, over and over. Therapy. Therapy. Therapy.

    Stop telling your weird dad and mom anything about your relationships or sex life.

    #1110644 Reply

    Your parents are weird as fuck. Sorry but it’s true. Clearly your father is obsessed with your gender and sexuality and that Is. Not. Normal.

    Move out. Go low contact. Get Therapy. Seriously.

    #1110646 Reply

    Remember when you said they wouldn’t treat you like your sisters? And now he’s already talking about how you’ve already got “dick in you.” That’s disgusting.

    Why haven’t you moved out? Seriously. You say you have no expenses and save lots of money each month. Get. Out. Go no contact. Get therapy.

    #1110647 Reply

    You said last time that you’d looked into therapy and it was too expensive. Really? Living at home with a full-time job and health insurance, you can’t afford a copay? Anytime I’ve sought therapy through my health insurance it was essentially free, maybe with a copay of $25-$40 per session. That’s peanuts. Are you not covered by insurance with mental health benefits? Does your work not offer mental health programs? Have you actually called the number on your card and asked?

    #1110648 Reply
    Part-time Lurker

    I vaguely remembered one of your previous posts after Kate mentioned it, but I had to go back and re-read it. I’m so so glad that you moved out. That’s a huge step toward living a healthy life!

    There is something VERY wrong with your father. It probably hurts to hear this, but I’m not sure that any amount of therapy could ever heal whatever is broken inside that man. You’ve internally normalized what is truly disturbing behavior. This is NOT how parents speak to their children or the way mentally stable individuals view relationships and sex. You need to keep moving forward with a healthy life. Invest in some time with a therapist who can help you set boundaries with your parents, and understand how his warped viewpoint has affected you and how it will affect future relationships. Don’t bring anyone home to meet your parents or discuss your dating life with them, because once he realizes that you are serious about being with someone his abusive and controlling behavior will only escalate and you’re going to need to have a strong support system in place to handle that so that you don’t wind up sabotaging your own relationships or worse wind up with someone just like your father. You’ve taken the first steps, but now you need to avoid getting sucked back in. Also, you say you’ve only begun dating in the last year or so and that this guy is only your second partner. Slow down a little and take some more time getting to know this person before you make a serious commitment to them.

    #1110649 Reply

    Well, but some or all of this clearly isn’t accurate, because as of February the LW hadn’t moved out or dated anyone ever. That was 4-5 months ago.

    And it’s not clear that any progress has been made. You’re still refusing to set boundaries with your dad, and you’re still “curious” why he says things like that. You know our opinion on that from your other posts, that he’s a deeply disturbed individual, perpetuating intergenerational SA. He has either directly sexually abused you or condoned sexual abuse of you by a family member. His repeated comments to you and your sister are abusive and directly sexual. Shut. Him. Down.

    • This reply was modified 7 months, 2 weeks ago by Kate.
    #1110650 Reply

    Oh wow. I remember from your earlier posts the awful commentary about being “passed around”. It sounds like you’re still very isolated if your abusive parents are the only people in your life you have to tell about your dating life. And given what a, forgive me, colossally terrible idea it was to tell them considering your dad’s deep misogyny and obsession with sex, I’m guessing you still don’t have a therapist.

    Please don’t subject this young man you’re seeing to your toxic family. Why are you seeking/needing your parents approval so much that you’re telling them things you know will land you objectified, ridiculed, insulted and possibly homeless (if you’re still living there)? Are you still living there? Your main focuses need to be, in order: Moving out of your parents’ house literally asap, getting into regular therapy, forming healthy friendships and connections to build out your own “chosen family” wholely apart and separate from your parents. You’re young and you’ve got so much life to live if you can find the strength to get out of this situation. We all genuinely wish the best for you and want to see you get better.

    #1110652 Reply

    Not to mention, your IP address should be different if you’re living somewhere else, but it’s exactly the same.

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