Ask Natalie by Natalie Bencivenga

Meddling Mama Ruining Son’s Dating?

DEAR NATALIE: Do you think it's wrong for a mother to be involved in her children's dating lives? My son is 25 and has a new boyfriend whom I don't like at all. I keep trying to set him up with other men, but he keeps telling me to stay out of it. I don't like the guy, and I'm not shy to say it. You are a mother's child no matter how old you are. Don't I have a right to give my opinion on his dating life? -- MEDDLING MAMA

DEAR MEDDLING MAMA: Yes, you have the right to give your opinion, but he also has the right to tell you to take a seat. He is a grown man. While he may be your little boy forever, to the world he is finally old enough to rent a car. That means, he gets to pick the guys that he wants all on his own. In all seriousness, the more you balk at the guys he likes, the more he will find guys that you don't like. Don't let this become a stalemate. Sit back, wait for him to ask for your opinion, give it gently and then stop talking about it. Most likely, he is just going through the pains of dating a few jerks before he realizes what else is out there. Don't push him into being oppositional. Wait it out, and then have that glorious moment when you can say (with arms crossed in a very mom-like fashion) "I told you so" before making him a big meal to drown his sorrows in. 

Please send your relationship and lifestyle questions to or tweet them to @NBSeen. You can also send postal letters to Natalie Bencivenga, 358 North Shore Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15212

(This column was originally published by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.)