The Place


Ask Ann: In-law drama, guilty friend, and giving up a hobby

Posted at 2:34 PM, Feb 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-27 16:34:46-05

Ann Cannon is an advice columnist forSalt Lake Tribune. Today, she tackled these questions:

1. My mother was just diagnosed with a chronic illness. I am worried about her and want to help make her life easier, but I am so busy that I have barely any time to take care of myself. How can I show my support without taking on too much?

2. My partner and I desperately need a romantic getaway to help our marriage, but we don't feel comfortable leaving our child with anyone but family if we're gone more than a few days. My family does not offer to help watch my child, so should I even ask them? And if I do ask, should I offer to pay them?

3. My in-laws like to take the whole family on trips, which is great, but this year, they booked a tropical vacation without even asking if the dates work for me! My employer can't give me the time off, and now my in-laws are upset that I can't make it, and they also don't get why I'm mad about not being consulted! How do I smooth this over?

4. I have a busy job and kids, and I feel guilty for not being there for my friends as much these days. I start feeling very guilty so I'll text them saying I'll bring them dinner or babysit their kids, but when the time comes to do it, I am too exhausted and end up cancelling. How can I show my friends I care without this cycle of committing and cancelling?

5. I am a home aquarium enthusiast and enjoy taking care of my salt water fish tank and fish. The problem is my partner said I need to stop spending money on this hobby, and use it for family expenses like vacations or home updates. My partner knows how happy the fish make me but just can't get comfortable with the expense. Should I get rid of my fish, and sacrifice for the good of the family?

Submit your questions to us on Facebook or email