DEAR HARRIETTE: I am a 25-year-old guy who still lives with his mother. I have had some trouble finishing college and getting my career together. But in reality, I think I’ve been sacrificing my needs for the needs of my mom. My mom is a divorced, lonely woman, and I think she likes having me at home. I know I need to get my life together and be an adult. I feel I am stuck between making my mother happy but sacrificing my future, or leaving my mom by herself and trying to pursue my life and dreams. How do I navigate this situation? -- Lonely Mom Vs. My Own Life, Baltimore
DEAR LONELY MOM VS. MY OWN LIFE: Many sons of single mothers find themselves in the position of serving as more than just a son. They take on the role of caregiver, too. You have to be mindful of caring for your mother and forging your own destiny. Make a 12-month plan for yourself. Write down your goals, and then list steps that can get you there. Finishing college should be at the top. Getting a job so that you can save to get your own home is key. Spending time with friends outside of your home is important. Talk to your mother about your plans, and work to get her support. Going out on your own does not mean you are abandoning her. It means you are growing up and becoming independent. It is time.