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Posted on Sat, Mar 10, 2012 : 5 a.m.

Boyfriend's mom can't stop interferring

By Carolyn Hax

Adapted from a recent online discussion.

(Dear Carolyn:

My boyfriend and I share a house but not a bedroom. The sex life is fine, it's just that he has feet like something you'd find in an ice block and he cuddles like an orangutan. Cute -- except when you wake up abruptly because it feels like someone poked your knee with an icicle. (He has been known to startle himself awake with his feet.)

I sleep badly at the best of times, so after a couple of attempts at compromise (socks ... he peeled them off with his toes; hot water bottle ... I stole it; electric blanket ... I woke us both up flailing around in an overheated mess), we went with turning the office into another bedroom. Bit weird maybe, but it works for us.

Only problem is, he mentioned it to his brother and now his mother is convinced (and delighted) that we're about to break up. Attempts to convince her otherwise tend to fall on deaf ears, and she checks to make sure there is still a bed in the office every time she visits. Latest? She tried to set him up on a date with the daughter of a friend of hers.

The only ways out of this that I can see are going back to lying awake at night staring at the back of his head with laser eyes of wakeful hatred or telling his mother she is an interfering old bat. Neither seems like a great option.

-- Cold feet ... Cold heart?

Beyond making a definitive statement, spoken once, both of you need to stop trying to "convince her." She's out of line, and you're only dignifying her behavior by responding to it.

That definitive statement being: "Mom, we have great sex, then we sleep apart. If you'd like to hear more awkward details about my intimate life, then keep on interfering."

I wrote it that way because your boyfriend is in the best position to stake this vampire. You could say it, too, but if your boyfriend refuses to be the one who sets boundaries with Mama, then that's an icy kick of a different sort.

By the way -- there are zoned, heated mattress pads, though no word on their calming effect on amorous orangutans.

--0-- --0-- --0--

Dear Carolyn:

I am 100 percent sure I don't want kids. Is it worthwhile/fair for me to pursue a relationship with the woman of my dreams, who as luck would have it does want them?

-- D.C.

That's an excellent question to ask her. Have you and she talked about it?

If it's too soon to have talked to her about it, then it's also too soon for you to be calling her the woman of your dreams.

And by the time it isn't too soon, then she also wouldn't be the woman of your dreams, she'd be a particularly fortuitous reality.

Can you tell " ... of my dreams" is not the concept of my dreams? And exactly how far off the subject am I at this point?

Anyway, honesty is the call here. Let the facts write your dreams.

Email Carolyn at tellme(at), follow her on Facebook at or chat with her online at noon Eastern time each Friday at

(c) 2012, Washington Post Writers Group