DEAR ABBY: I have been in what feels like a war with my grandmother. She always took care of me and my younger brother and sister. She was there when we couldn't be with our parents. For a long time, I was troubled and into addiction. I admit I lost sight of who I really was. I had two sons I didn't raise, but now that I'm back and a year and three months clean, I'm enjoying spending my time with the son I'm still in contact with. I have always lived with my grandmother.
Now that I'm taking control of my life and reaching the point where I'm ready to move away with my son, she's fighting me. She has many bad things to say about my past and a lot of things to throw in my face. After all this time, I thought she would be happy for me. Instead, I am encountering outright disrespect and ugliness. I have always known my grandmother could be hateful, but now it's turned up to full volume. Am I wrong for wanting to be with my son? I'm tired of crying all the time over this. -- BREAKING THE CYCLE
DEAR BREAKING: Because of your history, your grandmother may be fearful for the welfare of her great-grandson. However, if you are clean, sober and capable of caring for yourself and your child without her assistance, then it's time to graduate to independence. Tell your grandmother you love her and are grateful for all of the care she has given you. Then proceed with the move without burning any bridges, if that's possible.