Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Mom's Dating The Former Quarterback; Daughter Does Not Know What To Do!

Dear Tazi:

My life is over! I am twenty years old, and my parents have decided to get divorced. I can handle this, because they have been living separate lives for years and the stress of seeing them stay together for my sake has been overwhelming (they were still teenagers when they got married because Mom got pregnant with me). No, it is not the divorce that bothers me; it is the reason for the divorce. My mother has met someone and wants to "move the relationship forward". The problem is that the person she has met is the former quarterback of my high school football team. "Hunter" is only four years older than me!

I have been cheer-leading since I was old enough to walk, and participating on competitive teams since I was five; so I naturally tried out for my high school squad as soon as I was eligible, my freshman year. My mother came to all of the football games, even when it was so cold you tossed your dignity and wore a Snuggie, like those tools in the commercials! I thought she was there to watch me cheer; but now I realize she was there to watch Hunter in tight pants! The most humiliating part of all this? My old high school mascot was the Cougars!

Thankfully, I have been away at college while Mom and Hunter have been publicly prancing around together; so I have not had to put up with the stares and rude comments that are sure to come when I return home for Winter Break next month. Do you have any advice on how to handle this whole situation? I am praying to God that they break up; but I don't think that is going to happen - Mom and Hunter are talking about moving in together. Help!

Somewhere In Middle America

Dear Somewhere In Middle America:

Your situation certainly is a delicate one; however you must remember that your parents marriage - and the state of it - is nobody's business but their own. You mention that your Mom was still a teenager when she had you, which would put her in her mid-to-late thirties now; making the age difference between she and Hunter a little more acceptable to most people; but still upsetting to some.

At 24, Hunter is no longer a kid and is probably looking to settle down and get married; maybe even start a family. Your mother is still young enough to have children, and if this is the path she and Hunter decide to follow, your inability to accept their relationship will make the situation all the more difficult.

My advice to you is to have a frank talk with you mother about how you feel. Tell her why her relationship with Hunter upsets you so much, refraining from using phrases like "it's icky". Put your thoughts into a mature and reasoned argument, and then listen to your mother's response. If she is acting like a school-girl with a crush, I would not worry about a future between she and Hunter; these things tend to die a natural death. If, however, she is truly in love with Hunter and he with her you will have to work on accepting the relationship if you wish to have a continued relationship with your mother.

As for dealing with the rude stares and comments, I suggest you do so with grace. If someone calls your Mom a "Cougar", you might want to remind them that she is too young for that title; "Puma" is the correct term (trust me on this one; I'm a cat!). Once people see that they cannot rattle you, all but the most boneheaded will leave you alone; and as for them, they do not deserve the dignity of an answer.

You do not mention how your father feels about all that is happening; but I suggest that you do your best not to take sides in this matter. As I said before, the state of your parents marriage is nobody's business but their own.


P.S. Please try to keep some perspective, as well. I doubt your mother came to all of those football games just to "watch Hunter in tight pants". The age difference between you and he tells me that he would have been a senior during your freshman year, meaning your mother also attended three years of Hunter-free games. --T.K.

Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

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