ASK ELLIE: Family Conflict Causing Chaos

Q: I come close to hating a man. Help me please. He is retired ! Now my mom wants her, me and the guy to live together. She wants to see me happy, secure and financially stable since he is now retired.

He’s good but not my type. I am completely in love with another! I’m at my wit’s end. I need advice now! He doesn’t want to live with his mother and stepfather.

I don’t want him living with us. In fact, my mother doesn’t like it. She sees to my future safety because she is an old lady in poor health. But I love another man!

– Desperate!

A: If possible, start now to deal with your strengths, not your panic. You’re probably an adult (more on that later), and your mother fears for her own future, looking for what will help her financially and provide care in her own home.

But, if you are an adult, you have agency and must use it. (For readers, if they are under the age of marriage, it would be an illegal forced marriage. Since 2015, federal law in Canada has set the absolute minimum age of marriage at 16 years old. Provinces and territories may set a higher minimum age.)

If you are a minor, get help immediately. Speak to a guidance counselor or school teacher or trusted adult parent (not your mother) or religious leader (if connected to a religious center).

However, what is really happening is a standoff between you and your mother, which can be resolved. Refuse to marry the man. Period.

The man’s financial security means he doesn’t have to live with his own mother and stepfather. He can move on his own. Period. Also, a man who is now retired may be too old for you, especially if you don’t even like him.

If you love another man, make sure you’re not just trying to avoid your mother’s choice. You won’t be forced to marry anyone. So take the time to be certain of your feelings for anyone you marry and live with for the long term.

Above all, try to respond calmly to your mother, no matter if she persists in her opinion. Respecting his health issues is important. Be honest with her – she doesn’t even like the man she’s counting on to support her future and supposedly your future. But this man can be financially cunning himself and know how to keep his money to himself.

Secure yourself. If you’re not working, get the education you need to find a job. Love yourself first as an independent woman. Then you will know much better who you eventually want to be your life partner.


Comments about the couple having a “broken connection” with their former closest friends. They ignored the grandmother’s compromised health factor and refused to be vaccinated to continue visiting each other (March 2):

Reader: One thing COVID has taught me is who my real friends are. I have an elderly mother and an immunocompromised brother. I have always been on the front line for COVID vaccinations. So have all my real friends.

For my ex-friends now, I say, look at the numbers. The latest figures (at the time of writing by the reader) show that approximately 85% of all Canadians have been fully immunized. What is the likelihood/likelihood that a majority of them were “supported” by the medical hype?

They are free to choose not to be vaccinated. I choose not to associate with such people.


Q: My boyfriend is involved in a nasty divorce. His ex-wife wants everything he owns.

I have no problem being the other woman because he hasn’t been happy with her for years. They have two daughters and a son. He tries to stay close to them but the younger girl rejects him.

She is 13 and refuses to join others on visits to our house or even go to something she would normally like, like a musical. He is very hurt and angry at his mother for not helping. What can I do?

– loving girlfriend

A: Do nothing. It’s not your fight.

The daughter may come to terms with the situation over time, seeing the example of her siblings that their father still loves his children and that you are not a freak.

Or, she won’t accept the breakup and your presence until she’s ready. Loyalty to the mother is natural, especially when there is the other woman to blame, for a while.


Ellie’s tip of the day:

  • When family conflict creates chaos, stop yelling/panicking and become calm/rational. Pick the answer/choice that moves you forward.

Read Ellie Monday through Saturday. Send relationship questions to [email protected]. Follow @ellieadvice.

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