Every day we feature the beloved “Strawberry Letter” franchise that is so popular on “The Steve Harvey Morning Show,” heard nationwide. Send in your letters and Shirley Strawberry will dish out the necessary advice. Today’s topic: Hypocritical cheater Hi Steve, Shirley and morning crew, Here is my issue — my mother, who is in her mid 70s is having a relationship with a much younger man who is married. Here is some background: my parents were married for 45 years and during the last 10 years my father suffered a debilitating disease that required my mom to be total caregiver for him. During this time, this younger man came to our family as a handyman who could and would fix anything around the house. During the past ten years he has been invaluable. The problem started when I saw a suggestive romantic card that he gave my mother for Valentines Day. I confronted her about it and she defended him and said, “That’s the only kind that the store had.” Of course it sounded ridiculous to me and to the two people I confided in about this. This man’s actions have escalated into moderately manipulative actions, for example — having keys to the house, always getting her car washed and then keeping it to go do jobs elsewhere, etc. I don’t like this at all, but she is a grown up. I do not want to see my mother get hurt, but I know that’s going to happen. Steve and Shirley, I need your advice on what to do if anything. I don’t want to just wait until the other shoe drops. What is the likely payoff that this man is seeking? And what should I do, if anything, to protect my mother’s assets (like this paid-for house that she and I co-own)? I am hoping you can shed some light on this train wreck of a situation. Signed, A concerned daughter
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