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Ask Dr. Sherry: 'My Parents Think This Guy Is Bad News'

A reader questions whether to move forward with a new love interest after her parents question his shaky past. What would you do?

You’ve seen celebrity clinical psychologist Dr. Sherry Blake, author of The Single Married Woman: True Stories of Why Women Feel All Alone in Their Marriages, keep the Braxton sisters calm on the hit show Braxton Family Values. Now it’s your turn to sit in her chair…

Dear Dr. Sherry,

I’ve been dating this guy for about 3-4 months now, and he has only met my parents because I wanted them to know whom I was spending my time with. After they met him, they told to me that they did not like him at all. They thought he was cocky and misguided, and say he has no real profession or an actual career. He does not have a degree and he’s also been in jail (they don’t know that last part though). Because my dad’s opinion means the most to me, I’ve had to rethink some things. Now, I’m not sure if I like him as much as I thought I did. He’s a really nice guy, and he treats me great, but I am questioning the longevity of this pending relationship as well as the sustainability. He is great, but he’s not quite at the same point in life as me. Not to mention, I am now seeing some of his characteristics that my parents have pointed out. What should I do?



Dear Sis,

I hope you are thinking long and hard. It is easy for someone to be “nice” or “great” when their past is shaky and their future uncertain. You have to decide if it is worth being in a relationship with a person even if they have very little to offer you in return. Sometimes people get caught up in the surface level aspects of a relationship and fail to look beyond it. This is likely to lead to disappointments later. Regardless of whether or not your parents approve or disapprove of someone you are dating, you must figure out on your own what you want in a guy.

It is a real concern that it took your parents pointing out the weaknesses of your guy for you to question if you want to be with him or not. Even now, you are hiding the fact that he has been in jail and other issues from your parents. It seems as if you were okay with him and his issues until he met your parents. Since he met your parents and you received their feedback, you are considering ending the relationship because they did not approve of him. I am not suggesting that your parents’ comments are either accurate or inaccurate.  They may be preventing you from being hurt later. Stop and be completely honest with yourself by asking, what is your real attraction to this guy? It is likely that the attraction is physical given you have only been dating for such a short time. If you end the relationship, be honest about why you are moving on. It is okay to move on when someone is not quite at the same place in life that you are. Knowing this, ask yourself is there anything that keeps you in the relationship? There is no need to settle for less than what you want. – Dr. Sherry

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