Dear Amy: I was snooping in my son’s basement and discovered he is growing weed. Should I confront him? He could lose his job, house, reputation and shared custody of his daughter.
I am a nervous wreck thinking about how to approach him. My husband would have a stroke if he found out. I know I should do something, but what?
Dear Sad: Here’s what you should do: Stop snooping in your son’s basement.
Unless he has a sophisticated commercial marijuana ranch down there, you should assume this is for his own use, and leave it alone.
If you absolutely cannot stand it and must confront him about this, you will have to tell him the truth about your own behavior. One natural consequence of your admission would be for him to stop trusting you.
If you are ready to make this sacrifice, you should only urge him not to expose his child to his marijuana growing and weed use. Obviously, if you found this in the basement, so could she, and this would put his daughter in an even worse position than you are in, because involving her in this sort of secret could be ruinous for their relationship, and disastrous down the line.
State laws regarding marijuana cultivation seem to be quite convoluted. If he doesn’t have a license to grow and is caught (by someone other than you) the consequences could be extreme in proportion to his crime.
Dear Amy: My daughter, 9, is in Girl Scouts. She loves it. I offer a lot of my time helping out the troop. Today, they went to an ice show in which the troop paid for the tickets, so this was not an out-of-pocket expense for us.
The parents were asked to either provide a snack for their daughters, or send money for the girls to buy a snack. We opted to send a snack instead of sending money, as we struggle financially.
Once they got there, they realized that you can’t bring snacks in to the facility (understandable), so one of the troop leaders purchased popcorn buckets for each girl.
All the other girls brought money and were able to purchase their own drinks to go with the popcorn.
My daughter did not have any money with her, so her troop leader bought her a drink with a souvenir cup. My daughter thinks it cost around $15. I emailed the troop leaders and asked how much the souvenir/drink was and offered to reimburse them for it.
I felt like this was the right thing to do. However, my husband disagrees. He feels as though I shouldn’t have offered, since we basically followed their initial instructions.
I know this is a small problem but every time someone purchases something on my kids’ behalf without us asking, I feel obligated to at least offer to reimburse them when I have the funds. I know they can answer, “No – don’t worry about it.” Am I wrong for offering to reimburse the troop leader? Or is my husband right?
Confused Girl Scout Mom
Dear Confused: You did the right thing. These troop leaders volunteer their time to help supervise the girls, and in addition to spending their time, they willingly spend money on all sorts of little (and large) things along the way. It was kind of this troop leader to purchase this treat for your daughter. You can assume that she did so very happily and does not expect to be reimbursed, since this was an unanticipated expense.
Of course you should acknowledge this and (if you’re able) offer to reimburse her. You can expect her to turn down your offer, but your gesture is a nice way of acknowledging her kindness without making specific assumptions. She was being nice, and now you will be nice in return. That is the social contract your husband doesn’t seem to understand.
Dear Amy: The man signing his letter “No Prior Precedent” described his wife’s adult biological daughter, who she had surrendered for adoption at birth, entering their lives as an adult and wanting her biological mother to readopt her.
It is quite obvious that this person wants money. Once she is legally their child, she stands to inherit their money.
Seeing the Obvious
Dear Obvious: State laws differ, but generally children do not have an automatic right to inherit. And the prospect of inheritance does not always motivate people seeking a relationship with their parents.
Email Amy Dickinson at firstname.lastname@example.org.