DEAR ABBY: My husband and I have been married for 55 years –- more than half a century. We come from a generation where living together and having children before marriage was unthinkable.
Our 21-year-old granddaughter, "Stella," and her boyfriend moved in together two years ago, in what they called a "trial marriage." Last month, Stella gave birth to a baby girl and sent my husband and me a birth announcement.
We mailed it back with a note telling Stella we are ashamed of their conduct and lack of morals. We also told them there's nothing to celebrate about this birth of an out-of-wedlock child.
Four days later, my daughter (Stella's mother) phoned us in a rage. She said things are different nowadays and we have no right to impose our "outdated moral values" on their daughter and her boyfriend. My daughter insists we owe them an apology. She says we are out of line. Your opinion, please. -- STANDING BY OUR CONVICTIONS IN ARIZONA
DEAR STANDING: Although you come from a generation that believes it is best for a child to be born into an established family, with parents who are committed to each other enough to follow through with the legalities, it's time to face the fact that a sizable number of younger people feel differently today.
Your moral values are not outdated, but you do owe the couple an apology for lashing out at them in anger. It was cruel to have returned the birth announcement and told your granddaughter that the birth of her daughter was nothing to celebrate. Simply not responding at all would have signaled your disapproval and been much kinder.