AMY: I'm in my thirties and I go out with my boyfriend for two years. While my family lives in a different state, he lives at home with his parents.
That would not be a problem, except that we seem to spend too much time with his family, usually at least one weekend afternoons a weekend, in addition to the week's dinners.
Birthdays and anniversaries of the family tend to be business that last all day, and with siblings and grandparents who live nearby, I have the impression of spending all my time with his family. It seems excessive and I feel more like a child than an adult woman.
My boyfriend does not seem to see him that way. He always asks me if I want to do other things with his parents.
I tried to tell him that I must have the impression that we are developing our own relationships outside of his family, but I do not know if he hears me or if I ask too much.
I know his parents are pushing him to spend time with them, but I want him to set boundaries.
CHER STUCK: I will assume that your boyfriend is (also) 30 years old. I will also assume that he has always lived at home. He acts like a man whose world has always been centered on his family. YOU are the intruder, you are the extra, and you will be asked to be part of the strong social and family system that already exists.
Yes, it's too much time for you with his family. How do I know that? Because you think it.
With respect to the limits, I agree that limits must be established. But YOU should draw the limit, and this should be for you – not for him.
If family weekend afternoons are exhausting, you should instead take a yoga class – or a morning with a friend. He might decide that he misses staying with you, and so he might choose to do something with you. (Maybe he does not think so, but since you already have a plan for you, it does not matter.)
Also, take a separate means of transportation (if possible) for a day's celebration, so that your desire to leave does not hinder your desire to stay.
I guess you appreciate his family and I assure you that you will enjoy it more if you make choices according to your own desires and priorities.
You should also face reality: it's like that. That's the way it is. Unless he ultimately chooses to be a different type of adult, his near future and distant future will always include his clan.
AMY: I've recently started working longer than normal and it's getting exhausting. My friends are really important to me. We used to spend time everyday after work, but now I am too tired after work to stay awake late with my friends.
They are aware that my hours have changed, but they continue to call, text, and even go home at night.
When they do, I often tell them that I have more work to do (even if it's not my case), because I do not want to offend them by saying that I would rather look at it. Office "and go to bed rather than hanging. go out with them.
Is my lie and laziness justified, or should I just go beyond and go with them?
DEAR LAZY LIAR: Because you mentioned "The Office", I will use a reference from the series to describe you.
You, my friend, are such a "Pam".
But even Pam, sweet, passive and always cooperative, finally found her voice (in the third season). And so you should.
Lying and laziness are never justified. I'm surprised you're even making the effort to keep lying to your friends.
Say your truth: "Guys, my new work schedule is exhausting. I can only go out once a week. Let's find the best night and enjoy a quality shot. "
AMY: "Disturbed by Do Not Disturb" was offended by a "Do Not Disturb" notice from a hotel featuring a tie at the door. She thought it was a sexist symbol left by the university culture – and you agreed with it!
Where are we if we can not enjoy a little "wink" and spirit in this world?
Dear clueless: If that is your idea of the mind, then we have nothing to discuss.
You can send an email to Amy Dickinson at email@example.com or send a letter to Ask Amy, PO Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068. You can also follow her on Twitter @askingamy or on Facebook.