DEAR ABBY: I have always been the outsider in my family. My grandma raised me because Mom was an alcoholic and ran the streets with her boyfriend. My grandma died three months ago, and I have been having a hard time dealing with it.
My mother has moved into my grandma's house and wants me to come visit her. This is a problem because everywhere I look, it reminds me of my grandma. I have told her this, but she thinks that since she's painted and decorated it differently, it shouldn't be a problem for me.
I am the only child who has anything to do with her (she gave up my oldest sister), and she uses guilt when I don't come out and help her clean or go grocery shopping for her. I was raised to believe that we should take care of our elders, but I still have issues with her not being in my life growing up. I don't know how to handle this without just refusing to go. What should I do? -- CONFLICTED IN MISSOURI
DEAR CONFLICTED: Tell your mother the truth, just as you related it to me. Explain that although she may have painted and redecorated the house, seeing the place without your grandmother in it is depressing and you are no longer willing to do it. And the next time she asks you to help her clean or go shopping for her, say no and tell her why. Unless you have left something out of your letter about your relationship with her over the last decade, I don't think you should feel obligated to her at all.