Dear Judge Mental Jones,
I’m 35 years old and my newly retired narcissistic, possibly depressed, and needy father wants to hang out with me all the time. He was too busy to hang out for the previous 34 years and I never had an issue with it until now. I guess I’m used to being left alone by him, but now I’m upset that he’s so needy and using his old age as a manipulation tactic to hang out all the time and call me twice a day. I’m going crazy with guilt and drowning. Ugggggh!
Set healthy boundaries. And by that, I mean: lie. Tell him you took up some un-checkable skill (Toastmasters, Swimming or a Sex Club), and mention that you over-booked your schedule in hopes of coping with all the downtime from your *insert your recent made-up challenge* (ex. a breakup with an unnamed woman, quitting sugar). And voila, you have an alibi.
OR you can feel free to just Fuck Right Off because where the hell was he for all the times you were available IN REAL LIFE. You don’t get to be an active parent all these years later, and I’m sure he wasn’t Twitter-Style updating you with his every move with the last 34 years so fuck him.
I mean, it’s excellent that parenting has suddenly become “convenient,” and he wants someone to chat with, but that’s what lawn bowling and Facebook are for.
Maybe drop off a Dog and tell him you’ll call on Sunday’s to make sure it’s alive. Or sign him up to a book club or knitting or something he never wanted so he’ll NEVER tell you he has spare time again. Small cost – large reward.
There’s always the YMCA or the local Jewish Centre (even if you’re not Jewish). Then he can find a Coffee Buddy, which is the art of substitution. There is NOTHING WORSE than a parent with no content to share. You’re stuck listening to “Did you see The Voice last night?” and “Debbie’s daughter Carol just bought a squirrel feeder. It’s like Squirrel De Soleil now!”
Seriously though, back to setting those boundaries, so you don’t get walked all over. Obviously, your dad is going through an old age crisis, and if you do care about him, you should ask what’s going on with him as there’s a behavior change. If he opens up a little and sheds light on his issues, then you can be the kind soul that you are, which is way better than me and help him get the help he needs.
But really…..fuck that guy.
If you or a loved one you know battles with Bipolar Disorder or any Mental Health Issues, please do get the help you need. If you need to talk to someone now, you can talk to one of the many fantastic therapists at Better Help by CLICKING HERE.