- Dear Ann Landers: My 21-year-old stepson lives with my husband and me.
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Section: relationships, sexuality, children

Dear Margo,
My 21-year-old stepson lives with my husband and me. He is a good student at a nearby college and doesn't drink or do drugs. He does, however, bring his girlfriend home frequently, and she stays until the next morning -- in his bed, I should add. My husband doesn't see anything wrong with this, but I believe unmarried people should not be having sex, and they certainly should not invite their girlfriends to stay overnight when they are living in their parents' home. How can I convince my husband and stepson that this is not appropriate behavior? -- Out-Voted in California

Yesterday's Response:

Dear Out-Voted,
I agree that it is not acceptable for your stepson to invite a young woman to stay overnight in your home without your approval. But you are not going to change the behavior of a 21-year-old and shouldn't try. You do, however, have the right to say, "NOT IN OUR HOUSE." Tell your husband I said so.

Today's Response:

Dear Out-Voted,
At that time, and even now, "NOT IN OUR HOUSE" is the parents' choice. It should be said that fewer parents would take this position now because 1) there are co-ed dorms now and 2) views on pre-marital sex have loosened up quite a bit. In the very early years of the column, Mother actually banged the drum for women being virgins until marriage. She changed her mind in a relatively short time as she saw where the culture was going, and hearing how people were actually living. I believe it was her ability to alter her views and keep up with the times that made her relevant throughout a four decades-plus career.
- Margo

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Our Reader to Reader Question of the Week:

Dear Readers,
,This guy is a good friend, calls me a lot. If I don't answer he asks me to call him. Few times he said he would call but did not. Us it forgetful,distracted, or something else?

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"Sensual pleasures have the fleeting brilliance of a comet; a happy marriage has the tranquillity of a lovely sunset."
-Ann Landers