Join the debate. Vote Now on the Dear Abby Poll of the week.

by Abigail Van Buren

Man's Two Daughters Are More Than Woman Wants to Handle

DEAR ABBY: Our 24-year-old daughter, "Tiffany," still lives at home. When she was out of work for six months, we paid all her bills.

She has become very disrespectful to me and my husband. The atmosphere in our home has become so toxic that we asked her to move out. When we told her, she threatened us by saying if we make her move we'll never see her again.

I am overwhelmed with the feeling that I have done something to make her behave this way, and I can no longer function normally on a daily basis. I'm extremely depressed, and I desperately need advice on how to proceed. -- HELPLESS IN MARYLAND

DEAR HELPLESS: Is Tiffany on drugs? Does she have emotional problems that have prompted her personality change? If the answer is yes, she needs professional help and should be allowed to stay only if she agrees to it. If the answer is no, then your "mistake" may have been in being so lenient and generous that your daughter may feel it's her right to stay on her own terms indefinitely.

You are entitled to respect and peace of mind in your own home, so stick to your guns and don't cave in. Tiffany isn't going to disappear from your lives forever. In fact, if her behavior is any indication, I predict she'll be back the minute she needs money, if not before.