Dear Coleen, I’m a 25-year-old woman and have a young mum – she had me when she was 20, so is only 45 and looks at least a decade younger. My issue isn’t with her age – I love the fact she’s always been a friend to me, as well as a parent.
However, she’s had a messy history with men. She married my dad, but divorced him when I was only four and since then she’s had two more marriages which didn’t last.
She tends to get bored with men after a few years and I’m always the one to pick up the pieces.
She’s now with another guy and they’ve been dating for a couple of years after meeting online. He’s OK – I’ve nothing against him as a person – however, she told me last week they’ve got engaged and are planning to marry early next year.
What is your view? Have your say in the comment section
My heart sank and I felt angry with her too, because I don’t see why she has to get married. Why can’t she just be with a guy without feeling the need to walk down the aisle?
Her last two divorces were acrimonious and painful and, after the last one, she even said herself “never again”.
Is there anything I can say to my mum without falling out with her?
Well, maybe she thinks it’ll be different this time. Look, I think it’s possible to have a heart-to-heart with her and tell her your concerns without arguing.
If you approach it from a position of love – wanting what’s best for her and not wanting to see her get hurt again, then she can’t have a problem with that. It might get her to open up a bit about her relationship and provide you with some reassurance.
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The bottom line is, she’s a grown woman and it’s her decision.
She knows what she’s getting into, she’s well aware of her track record and she understands how hard divorce can be. She’ll marry with or without your approval, but I’m sure she ultimately wants your support.
It might not work out in the long term and, if it doesn’t, then resist the urge to say “I told you so” and just be there for her.
You’ve only got one mum and, OK, maybe she hasn’t made the best choices in the past, but try not to be judgmental.
The truth is, we don’t know how a relationship will pan out when we get into it and your mum probably thought (or at least hoped) that every one of her marriages would last.
So talk to her, but don’t fall out over it. It sounds like you’re close and it’s a relationship that will last no matter how many marriages come and go.