(NNPA)—Dear Gwendolyn:


I have five adult children, two boys and three girls. About 15 years ago I was laid off from my job. I was buying my own house, which was nice and spacious. There were seven bedrooms—one for each of the children, my master bedroom, and a guest bedroom. I was doing good. My husband and I had divorced after the youngest child was born.

All the children were living there without any compensation being requested. They were able to work and save money. That’s how I wanted it. I wanted them to get ahead in life and not have to struggle the way I had to do. Instead of moving after my divorce, I stayed because I wanted them to be brought up not in poverty. I never wished for them to have to struggle.

After being laid off, my financial situation changed. When I requested each child to give $300 per month; they had a closed door meeting and came out saying, “We are all moving out.” They each rented a $700 per month apartment. As a result of their decision, I had to live at The Mission for three months. I lived on the street (homeless) for six months. Those were the hardest times of my life. All my children are now married and having a baby every year. They claim they cannot pay a babysitter. However, they all have good jobs. Maybe I made it too easy for them years ago.

Gwendolyn, what should I do?—Sharon

Dear Sharon:

This is going to be hard, but you must do it. Your children did not love you 15 years ago and they do not love you now. They need you now, but think of the time when you needed them. Help them to secure a good babysitter, individual or a commercial run daycare center. Every mother never wants to turn her back on the needs of her children, but think about it.—They turned their back on you.

(Got a problem, email Gwen at: gwenbaines@hotmail.com or write to her at P.O. Box 10066, Raleigh, N.C. 27605-0066. To receive a reply, send a self-addressed stamped envelope. Visit her website at: http://www.gwenbaines.com.)

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