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Relationship Health Message Board

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Hi everyone!

Before I get into the issue, I'd like to wish everyone Happy Holidays.

I've been with my girlfriend for 2 years now and I've already gotten through with meeting the parents and mostly everything about her. I know her situation may not be the worst thing in the world, but it still imposes a negative impact on her. She's turning 20 years old this weekend, and her mother is still really strict on her. So much so that my girlfriend constantly feels guilty for not being "responsible". She has her own car, as does her old brother. Both parents and both siblings have their own car. The children have their own credit cards as well and can use it at their own expense since its already covered by their parents. Despite all this though, my girlfriend cannot do something as simple as driving to a 24hr Safeway that is literally a minute drive away to pick something up. Her mother is over protective of her. Her father doesn't help much cause he can't win over the mother (she's the breadwinner of the fam). The brother gets to do whatever he wants. He gets to leave whenever he wants.

On the contrary, my girlfriend is expected to be really responsible and obedient. It's gotten to a point where she will constantly be afraid to do things she wants. Her mother if also very critical of her in terms of appearance and personality. Sometimes it seems as if she is disappointed to even have a daughter. But then she can be really kind too. It's as if she's bipolar. I just think its unfair that she's turning 20 and she has to ask her mom to even leave the house. My girlfriend is the most responsible person I know.

Any tips or advice to help my girlfriend? She says she's always trapped and hates the constant restrictions. Her family members are very private individuals. I've had dinners with them and it always seems like they never sit down together to eat and talk. Whenever I'm there, it seems the conversations they have with each other are the first in a long time. Every time.

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