DEAR ABBY: I'm a 23-year-old woman who still lives at home. I have been working for the last five years and have saved enough to live comfortably on my own. Unfortunately, my parents have forbidden me to do it because they think I'm being manipulated into it by my boyfriend, that I just want to "do whatever I want" and be out until late (although I'm rarely up past 9 p.m. and they know it), and because I "can't stand them" anymore.
I have no privacy! My mail is opened "mistakenly" and my calls are listened in on even when I politely - and sometimes angrily - ask them not to. They have even imposed a rule that I must show them my bank balance weekly.
They have told me I will not leave the house without being married first. I would like to live on my own before I actually marry so I can experience what it's like. This is something I have always wanted to do. If I do move out, they say I'll "bring shame and embarrassment" to the family.
There seems to be a double standard going on here because my older brother has his girlfriend sleep over. How can I accommodate my parents without being disowned?