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Tuesday 6 December 2016

Dear Rosanna: My mum is always snooping around - what should I do?

Rosanna Davison
Rosanna Davison

A long distance couple are finding it difficult to find common ground, a protective mother

Q: My mum keeps busting into my room without knocking and I know she snoops around when I'm not there because my stuff is moved around.

I'm not sure what she thinks I'm up to, but she seems fairly convinced that I'm doing something that needs her constant vigilance - drink, smoking and drugs are probably her biggest concerns, but there's really no need.

I'm 15 and to be honest, I'm an angel compared to most of the girls I hang out with.

I'm not even really big into social media so I don't go along with the crowd, I just do my own thing. How can I get her to trust me ? I think she reads all the dodgy stuff that teenagers get up to and thinks I'm going to go astray too.

A: By what you have told me, I definitely think that your mum is concerned about you and wants to know exactly what you get up to when she's not around. I can understand her point of view to a certain extent, and I'm sure that my parents didn't trust me 100pc when I was 15 and 16 either - although I was also well behaved.

But you also have a right to privacy and your own space without worrying that she'll be snooping.

My advice is to have an honest conversation with her.

You can't keep going on like this, as it will eventually lead to arguments and tension. So be upfront with her and tell her that you feel like she's been spying on you, and you've got nothing to hide.

Aim to cultivate an honest and open relationship with your mum, and go to her for advice if you need to. That is the best way to reassure her that all is okay and there's no need for her to be suspicious.

Q: I met my boyfriend of two years while on holidays, I don't think either of us was looking for love but we fell for one another and have been travelling back and forth - he's in the UK - ever since.

It's come to a point where we both want to be together properly but there's no clear cut way to do this as we both have good jobs with future possibilities and we both have families that we are super close to, plus lots of amazing friends.

It feels like whoever makes the move will be giving up a lot and it could cause problems in the future; whoever makes the bigger sacrifice could feel resentful or as if they deserve compensation.

We're stuck in a limbo - and it seems like one of us has to 'surrender'. Is that how it has to be, one person giving up a lot and the other person living with a feeling that it could be thrown in their face in the future?

A: It's wonderful that you have found love with your boyfriend and that you both feel that you have a future together.

But this is a really tricky situation to be in and I don't envy your decision one bit.

But since breaking up most definitely isn't an option, and you want your relationship to move to the next level by moving in together, one of you really will have to make the jump.

I don't see any other solution around it, although you're the only people that can make the final decision on this.

My advice is for both of you to speak to your employer to look at possible job move options, and to speak to your family and friends to gather their opinions.

Also try to look at all the positives of moving, from your own point of view.

The UK is not a big distance away to travel, it would bring countless new adventures, happy domesticity with your partner and I'm sure your friends and family would appreciate the chance to visit you abroad too.

Q: My very dear friend has made her will and as we're both in our 80s, I think she's right to be organised. The older you get, the less morose it seems.

Anyway, she is leaving one of her children with nothing as they have been estranged for many years.

Like a lot of family arguments, it doesn't seem to be over one thing in particular - rather a series of clashes over stuff that no one can quite remember.

I'm old enough to have seen this before and I know that no one wins. One person gets to go to the grave with anger still in their hearts while what's left behind is a world of pain.

One child gets nothing and even if the other three do the right thing and split the house or whatever with them, they will feel unloved.

From experience, I think she's wrong, and whatever satisfaction she thinks she will get from this last act, it is nothing compared to the grief it will cause all four children. Should I tell her what I think or stay out of it?

A: I  can understand your concern for your friend and her family, but there may be more to her story than meets the eye.

She has obviously considered the situation carefully, and it's not a decision that one would take lightly. If I were you, I would be a supportive friend but avoid getting too involved in her will and who gets what.

At some point soon, you may offer her the chance to have a chat about it with you over a cup of tea.

That may provide an opportunity for you to pass on your advice and give her an outside perspective, in a low-key way, but otherwise I would suggest that you stay out of her and her family's business as it will potentially cause upset and distress.

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