Friday, January 30, 2015

Parents let kids run wild


May 13, 2011 |

Dear Annie: My daughter has five beautiful children whom we love very much. My husband and I often take the kids overnight and on weekends to give some quiet time to their parents.

When the children are with us, they behave beautifully. But when their parents walk back in the door, it is a total disaster. This past weekend was the worst. As soon as their parents came over, the kids began jumping, running around, screaming and teasing the dog. I lost it and really yelled. I know my son-in-law was upset, but he will sit there and do nothing when things like this are going on.

I feel terrible and am depressed about losing control. My daughter and her husband never correct the children, and it is upsetting when my husband and I go out of our way to make a wonderful weekend for the kids and have it end on a sour note.

I want to say something to my daughter and son-in-law, but don’t want to damage our relationship. I have thought of alternatives, such as not taking the children at all, taking only one at a time or only watching the kids at our house. We have a country home, a large yard, a couple of dogs and plenty of space, so it is more enjoyable for us to have the children here anyway.

I am so disappointed, angry and hurt with the children’s behavior, I just want to cry. My husband does not want me to say anything. What do you think?

— Frustrated and Sad

Dear Sad: As tempting as it is to criticize your daughter’s parenting skills, we urge you not to. She will resent it enormously. The most helpful thing you can do is teach those children proper behavior when they are with you. Whenever possible, baby-sit at your country home. If they turn into wild animals when their parents pick them up, so be it.


Dear Annie: Counseling is frequently mentioned in your column, sometimes as your recommendation, sometimes by readers whose partners won’t accompany them and occasionally by someone disappointed or happy with the results.

This makes me wonder how successful counseling is. Perhaps your readers would share their experiences and tell us how to find a good counselor.

— Problem Still Here

Dear Problem: You’ve raised some valid issues. So, readers, how about it? Let us know if you’ve tried counseling, how you found your counselor and what your experience was like. We’ll print the most interesting and helpful responses.


Dear Annie: My boyfriend, “Dan,” recently died after a sudden heart attack. He was only 39 and in seemingly good health.

Dan was completely estranged from his family, so when he had his heart attack, I was the person the hospital contacted, and I was the only one by his bedside. I notified his family, but they didn’t bother to show up until after he died.

At that point, they all swooped down and made funeral arrangements that Dan would not have wanted. Instead of the military funeral and religious service he once told me he preferred, the family had him cremated with no service at all. I was told there was nothing I could do because Dan didn’t leave a will, nor had he named me as the person to handle arrangements. In most states, the immediate family, no matter how distant, has the right to make those decisions.

Annie, please let your readers know how important it is for people to make a will and give specific instructions. It could save a lot of grief and misunderstanding.

— Sadder but Wiser

Dear Sadder: People don’t like to think about their funerals, especially if they are relatively young. But anyone who has specific wishes should put them in writing and see that everyone has a copy. Our condolences.


Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please e-mail your questions to [email protected], or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 5777 W. Century Blvd., Ste. 700, Los Angeles, CA 90045. To find out more about Annie’s Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at

— Creators Syndicate Inc.



Special to The Enterprise

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .


    Suspected Ebola patient being treated at UCD Med Center

    By San Francisco Chronicle | From Page: A1

    Town hall focuses on Coordinated Care Initiative

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1

    Schools give parents tools to help kids thrive

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    Need a new best friend?

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2 | Gallery

    Stanford University to get $50 million to produce vaccines

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    Two more cases of measles in Northern California in children

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    Dartmouth bans hard liquor

    By New York Times News Service | From Page: A2

    Walkers head out three times weekly

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3Comments are off for this post

    Free tax preparation service begins Monday

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

    Vote for your favorites in Readers’ Choice poll

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    No bare bottoms, thanks to CommuniCare’s Diaper Drive

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3 | Gallery

    Storyteller relies on nature as his subject on Saturday

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Still time to purchase tickets for DHS Cabaret

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    All voices welcome at sing-along Wednesday

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Great Chefs Program will feature Mulvaney

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

    Take a photo tour of Cuba at Flyway Nights talk

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A6 | Gallery

    February science fun set at Explorit

    By Lisa Justice | From Page: A6 | Gallery

    See wigeons, curlews and meadowlarks at city wetlands

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8 | Gallery



    Time for bed … with Grandma

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

    Protect root zone to save trees

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

    Weigh quality of life, density

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

    Olive expert joins St. James event

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

    We’re grateful for bingo proceeds

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

    Tom Meyer cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A10

    A ‘new deal’ for the WPA building

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10



    Mustangs hold off UCD women

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    UCD men set new school D-I era win record

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    UCD has another tough football schedule in 2015

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

    Gould’s influence felt mightily in recent Super Bowls

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1

    Sharks double up Ducks

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

    Sports briefs: Watney, Woods start slow at TPC Scottsdale

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2

    Recall that first Aggie TV game, national title?

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B8 | Gallery





    ‘Song of the Sea’ is an enchanting fable

    By Derrick Bang | From Page: A11 | Gallery

    ‘Artist’s Connection’ launches on DCTV

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11

    Gross’ paintings highlight a slice of Northern California

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A12 | Gallery

    February show at YoloArts’ Gallery 625 is ‘Food for Thought’

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A12 | Gallery







    Comics: Friday, January 30, 2015

    By Creator | From Page: A9