"He's a Mama's Boy"

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His Turn, Continued

"As a 40-year-old bachelor I longed to meet someone and get married. When one of my bowling teammates introduced me to Sue, I was instantly attracted. She's outgoing and gorgeous. I enjoyed her company so much that I asked her out immediately. I soon fell in love with Sue and her wonderful children. Being with her kids brought out my untapped fun-loving and playful side: I rode roller coasters with Mark, built sand castles with Patty, and taught them how to bowl. And the long talks Sue and I had made me feel truly understood for the first time. Sue complains that she plays second fiddle to my mom, but she's got it all wrong. I've never felt as close to anyone as I have to Sue.

"She's right that my parents didn't meddle while we were engaged. Unfortunately, Mom seized on my marriage as a chance to do things she could only dream about before -- dote on grandkids, treat us to restaurant dinners, take extravagant trips. I've begged Mom to back off, but she doesn't listen. Besides, I love her and, at 82, she's not going to be around much longer.

"As for sticking her nose into our personal business, Mom is guilty -- and so am I. After we got married I continued to call or stop by every day. She traps me into talking about our marriage by asking questions so innocently that I end up saying things I never intended to. Who knew Mom would talk to my wife about these conversations? Sue has every right to be angry with both of us, but especially me. I feel terrible about that. As for Mom's relationship with Mark and Patty, yes, she offers opinions and has probably been too free with money and gifts. But the kids adore her, and I just don't see Mom's involvement with them as negative.

"I really miss the intimacy Sue and I once had. When we're not arguing, there's no one I'd rather be with more than my smart and beautiful wife. I couldn't bear to lose her."

Continued on page 5:  The Counselor's Turn


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