DEAR ABBY: I'm a sophomore in a good university, studying chemical engineering. My mother feels that since I'm studying such a potentially rewarding and well-paying field, I should date only other engineers or pre-med students. She says she wants me to date people who will benefit me if we stay together.
Earlier this year, I met a girl who goes to a local community college and plans to be a teacher, and introduced her to my mother on the phone. Afterward, my mother asked me what school and major she was in. When I told her, she said I could do better and should date people on my own level.
This was extremely hurtful. My mother never gives the girls I introduce her to a chance. I really like this girl and don't want something like this to interfere. What can I do about my mother's narrow-minded thinking? -- HURT IN HACKENSACK, N.J.
DEAR HURT: Not much, I'm afraid. You view selecting a partner from a romantic perspective. From your mother's perspective, it will be a financial merger. I'm sure your mother wants you to be happy as much as you do. However, you are not an extension of her -- and only you can determine what qualifications are important to you in a life partner. When you are fully mature you will understand this and make your own decision without seeking her approval.