Why Does My Grandson Think I Should Pay Him for Missing Our Family Vacation?

I’m treating my household to a particular trip in Alaska. My grandson, 28, and his spouse are unable to affix us; they’re anticipating a child quickly. I’m sorry they will’t come, however I used to be shocked when my grandson requested me for a money present equal to what I’d have spent for them to affix us on the journey. He prompt I donate the cash to the child’s school fund. I’m shocked! I used to be pleased to assist them with marriage ceremony bills and a part of the down cost on their first house. However I instructed him this isn’t how life works. Was I unsuitable?


You already know it’s dangerous once I’m shocked, Popsy! I see two methods of studying your grandson’s nervy request: He could also be an entitled younger man who has grown too comfy counting your cash as his. Or — and this requires some compassion — freaked out by the pending duties of parenthood, he might need made a foolish money seize.

In both occasion, you had been proper to refuse him. Your beneficiant provide to spring for a household trip doesn’t oblige you to make compensatory funds to those that are unable to attend. I’d have a follow-up dialog along with your grandson to clear the air. Let’s hope he sees the sunshine.

Inform him you’ve been pleased to assist him with occasional bills. Should you plan to contribute to the child’s school fund — not that you’ve any responsibility to — let him know. Extra vital, although, inform him he’s not entitled to your cash and your invites don’t embrace an choice to gather their money worth as a substitute. Let him know, too, that his conduct was hurtful, and risked making you’re feeling like a strolling ATM.

I’m a girl in my early 30s. My commute includes a crowded bus journey that usually leaves individuals standing. These buses have “precedence seats” within the entrance for the aged and folks with disabilities. I used to be sitting in a single when a rush of individuals received on, together with a girl with grey hair who appeared about 70. I stood up and supplied her my seat. She responded loudly, “How previous do you assume I’m? Actually, this will get annoying!” I felt horrible. How can I keep away from this sooner or later — solely provide my seat to those that are clearly previous or in want?


I like your considerate impulse however let me counsel a unique strategy: Cease providing your seat to particular individuals. It’s not so that you can resolve who’s previous or residing with a incapacity. (In spite of everything, age is relative, and plenty of disabilities are invisible.) When the bus turns into standing room solely, rise up from the precedence seat. You don’t want it or meet its necessities.

In my expertise on public transportation, this normally works out, and an individual who wants the seat greater than I do typically results in it. But when the prospect of a teenage boy snagging it’s an excessive amount of so that you can bear, ask the individuals standing close by if any of them would really like the seat.

I organized a crusing tour for 3 younger households with kids. All our children are in elementary faculty. On the finish of the journey, I found my husband’s hashish vape, which he thought he had misplaced, beneath a pile of baggage. Our pal was upset when she noticed it. She feared briefly that her 10-year-old son had used it. I apologized however was shocked by her anger. All of the adults had been consuming alcohol brazenly, and my pal smokes pot. (It’s authorized the place I reside.) The concept that a 10-year-old would vape appears preposterous. How grievous was this error?


There are few phrases worse than “I apologized, however …” We don’t should share our mates’ misery to make a very good apology, however we do should really feel sincerely sorry to have upset them. Minimizing your pal’s emotions as overreaction suggests (to me) that you must revisit your apology.

As to your arguments: Adults could drink alcohol or smoke pot however nonetheless not need their younger kids to. There isn’t a hypocrisy in that. And I disagree {that a} 10-year-old would by no means attempt to vape. (I pinched cigarettes from my mom at that age on a regular basis.) It appears your husband made an trustworthy mistake that upset your pal. No large deal! Your husband or you must apologize sincerely and put it behind you.

I’m a 45-year-old who has carried out his fair proportion of air journey. Having witnessed simple local weather change (due, partly, to airplanes), I’ve sworn them off and encourage others to do the identical. My pricey cousin plans to ship her younger son to Paris by aircraft to take part in a summer season camp. Might I encourage her to not?


I agree that we face a local weather disaster, however focusing solely on industrial air journey — with out contemplating some other factor of our carbon footprints — appears blinkered. The response should be deeper and higher coordinated than merely canceling a child’s summer season plans. I’d hold quiet about camp however attempt to interact your cousin within the bigger local weather mission, as a substitute.

For assist along with your awkward state of affairs, ship a query to SocialQ@nytimes.com, to Philip Galanes on Fb or @SocialQPhilip on Twitter.

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