DEAR SOMEONE ELSE’S MOM: This will sound a little nuts, but my dad is upset that I’m dating a guy from Germany. I was raised Jewish, and although we’re not overly observant, my father can’t forgive what the Germans did to his parents and grandparents.
My boyfriend had nothing to do with what happened way before most of the people alive today were even born. Why doesn’t my dad see that? --- WHY WON’T HE LET GO?
DEAR WHY WON’T HE LET GO?: Your dad probably grew up hearing first- and second-hand stories of how life was for his close ancestors. Even if he fully intellectually understands that your boyfriend is far separated from his country’s past, your dad’s heart has been shaped by painful memories.
Hopefully in time he’ll give your boyfriend a chance, but be patient and help your boyfriend understand it’s likely not anything personal.