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Dear Maura: Do I mother my son too much?

Solve your life dilemmas with expert advice from Maura O’Neill


Cutting the apron strings can be hard

Cutting the apron strings can be hard

Cutting the apron strings can be hard

Dear Maura: MY 45-year-old son comes home if he has a serious row with his wife. I think I’ve saved his marriage more than a few times but his wife feels that I’ve made things worse. She wants me to keep my door closed if he arrives after they’ve had an argument. I get on with my daughter-in-law and they’ve two lovely children but I’m not keen on taking instructions from her about my son. His dad agrees with her and is fed up telling me to let him work it out himself. I don’t know what to do because I’m torn between being there for my son, even if he’s in his 40s, or taking heed of what the others are saying. Sometimes my gut is telling me that this is not right but when he’s at the door looking I miserable it’s hard to turn him away. How can I stop doing this after all this time? I suppose I should let him get on with his life and marriage but it’s turning my back on him that’s the difficult thing to do. He’s my only boy and I spoiled him when he was little. Maybe it’s time to get on with my life. Answer: You have a strong emotional attachment to your son. You find it challenging to stop being a hands-on mum to him as you have never fully cut the apron strings. I know that deep down you realise your husband and your daughter-in-law are right about letting your son work through his life with all its ups and downs. It’s important that he stays home after a row and talks everything through with his wife. Running off to his mum and leaving her with the stress of the argument and two children to take care of is just not on. He needs to face up to his responsibilities to his family. You, on the other hand, need to focus on your life — the part after you’ve raised your children.

How can I get my single life body back?

Dear Maura: I was fed up with no man in my life and put all my energy into getting the body I wanted. And yes I did get the man. But I’ve put on at least two stone since he came into my life. He loves his food! What is the universe doing to me that I end up after all my hard work with a man who loves going to restaurants and cooking amazing dinners? Of course, I’m happy in love, in my relationship, but I’ve a whole wardrobe of clothes I can’t get into.

Sometimes I get a bit depressed with how my body looks but then my boyfriend cooks me something special and that’s that. My question for you is how do I balance this lifestyle of mine with my wish to get into my clothes again

Answer: You are happy and enjoying this relationship. Well done to you. Now, you are concerned because the body you had put so much effort into achieving is slowly disappearing. My advice is not to embark on a regime that’s too strict and maybe in your current situation is unattainable.

However, if this guy is really for you, he will support your efforts to get back on track. He can come up with healthier dinners and when you go to a restaurant don’t have dessert. Small tweaks make change manageable.

Email your problems to
Dr Angela Brokmann dr.angela@sundayworld.com
Maura O’Neill maura.oneill@sundayworld.com
All pictures are posed by models

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