Dear Lola,

My daughter asked for a cat. At seven years old, I thought she was too young and said no. My daughter then proceeded to spend an entire year asking for a cat, even going so far as to save her allowance up to be able to help purchase it. My wife and I finally caved and decided to let her get one, on the condition that she care for it entirely. She needed to clean the litter box, feed the cat, play with it for exercise, etc. She did really well for a few months but has now started to complain about having to do so many extra chores in addition to her homework. In order to make sure the cat is well-cared for, my wife has begun helping with the litter box and feedings. I strongly disagree with what my wife is doing and think we need to find the cat a new home. My wife said she’s worried our daughter will be traumatized. I say she would learn a valuable life lesson. What should we do?


Exasperated By Excuses

Dear Exasperated By Excuses,

Seven-year-old Miniature Human wants feline. Parents decline due to immaturity. Seven-year-old Miniature Human then proceeds to wage a whine fest which lasts for an entire year. Miniature Human then gets her wish granted because she’s… suddenly mature enough at 8 years old?! Sir, I must confess, your very letter has left me speechless with disbelief.

Had you ever actually met your Miniature Human before buying the feline?!

I can find no other reason that you fell for the classic ‘I promise to do all the work’ trick when it comes to buying fur friends for a Miniature Human. I have to say, the year-long tantrum should have tipped you off that you did not have a Miniature Human who had reached the maturity to solely care for another living being.

There is a reason Miniature Humans are in need of adult supervision well past the age of eight.

I mean, next you’ll be having us all believe that your Miniature Human is ready to pay her own mortgage. Or start a lucrative career as a surgeon. Even drive herself to elementary school in her very own car! After all, your eight-year-old likely believes she is capable of all of these things and you seem to believe everything she says. Which is why I want to repeat myself.

There is a reason Miniature Humans are in need of adult supervision well past the age of eight.

Now that we’ve established the fact that your Miniature Human is not always capable of making the most mature, rationale decision, you want me to get on board with your plan to teach her a valuable life lesson in the form of giving away her beloved feline.

Clearly, your wife is handling this matter in a much more mature manner.

I think you should defer to your wife in any and all life decisions… until she deems you mature enough for the task of adulthood. Honestly, you are one step above your Miniature Human in the way you are reacting right now. Why are you so bothered by your Miniature Human getting assistance, from the very person in the world that she should be getting it from? Perhaps because you want to make the problem disappear immediately with the least amount of fuss on your part.

That is not how the game of raising Miniature Humans works and you know it.

You sir, allowed your Miniature Human to adopt a living being that has an average lifespan of 18 years. Had you ever once considered how your Miniature Human’s life would become more hectic and difficult as she aged? Her homework loads increasing? Extracurricular activities becoming more frequent and time consuming? College dormitories not allowing a cat to live on the premises?

You expected a Miniature Human to appreciate the magnitude of what you yourself had not grasped.

Now it’s time to move forward with a bit more wisdom and maturity than was previously displayed. Discuss the time constraints on your Miniature Human and come up with a schedule that everyone in the household can live with. It seems your wife has been willing to shoulder quite a bit of the load, though you should volunteer to help with some of that even if it rubs you wrong. You’ll not only teach your Miniature Human that she can count on your help when times get tough, you’ll also remind your spouse that you can be flexible when situations change from the initial planning stages.

Making two ladies happy with one solution should garner you a bit of ice cream as a reward.


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5 replies on “Dear Lola – Daughter neglects cat…

  1. Dear Lola,

    You are SO wise, I am so grateful that you were there to help these people in their time of need. I’m also impressed that you were so objective and helpful, when everyone knows a dog is a much better pet for a miniature human.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lola says she is grateful this family did not get a majestic canine because while they are much superior, they also require a lot more daily commitment. Lola does not believe the letter writer is currently capable of it.


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