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by Abigail Van Buren

Man's Support of Parents Leaves No Room for a Wife and Family

DEAR ABBY: My boyfriend of several years financially supports his parents for cultural reasons. It was expected of him from an early age because he is the only child, and he intends to support them for the rest of their days.

Not only does he pay their mortgage and provide a sizable monthly allowance, but I have just learned that he is paying off all of the debts his father has accumulated over the years as well. This is in addition to the tens of thousands of dollars in spending money he has given them to visit the homeland every few years. Combine this with his massive school loan repayments and it's unlikely he will have enough to be able to retire, let alone for us to have children.

I am at the age where if I am going to have kids, it needs to be within the next few years, and it is looking unlikely. I love him dearly, but I'm wondering if I should stay with him, knowing that his parents will eventually need to live with us for the rest of their lives. Even questioning this is making me feel guilty and selfish. (By the way, he has told me he would have proposed by now but couldn't afford a ring as all of his discretionary income goes to his parents.) Advice? -- GETTING RESENTFUL

DEAR RESENTFUL: Have you told your boyfriend how you feel? If you haven't discussed it with him, you should. He sounds like a caring and dutiful son. However, unless you intend to join him in becoming a childless indentured servant to his parents, end the relationship.

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