Dear Abbie | Reviews | journaljournalenligne.com
DEAR ABBY: I am a woman who recently had a girlfriend, “Darlene”. After meeting her, I thought that was love. But my old (bisexual) friend “Michelle” makes me feel different. I’ve known her since kindergarten, but lately I feel my heart racing and butterflies in my stomach just thinking about her. When Michelle does my nails and holds my hand steady, my knees are weak. I don’t feel that way with Darlene, although I still care deeply about her. I don’t want to hurt her feelings by breaking up with her, but I think if I was single, Michelle might consider dating me. Darlene’s feelings are extremely sensitive and I want to keep her as a friend. But just being with Michelle makes me happier than ever. Abby, this is driving me crazy. Am I going to hurt someone or should I stay with Darlene and miss being with someone I’m in love with? Am I a bad girlfriend just thinking about this? — LOVERS IN ALASKA
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DEAR LOVERS: Your feelings are your feelings. You are not a “bad” girlfriend; you’re a girlfriend who’s ready to break up with Darlene. Before you make any announcements, check with Michelle that your feelings are mutual. If so, you need to tell Darlene that you want to see other people. Expect her to be hurt and probably angry, so be as gentle as possible when breaking the news. It will do the three of you a favor. Breakups, while painful, are a part of life. People are recovering and Darlene will be free to find someone who will love her the way she deserves to be loved.
DEAR ABBY: My younger sister, “Tish”, is keen to get our parents’ affairs in order. They are in their eighties and in excellent physical and mental health with the exception of osteo-related problems. Tish’s constant reminders make them feel like she’s rushing them to the grave. My siblings and I appreciate her intentions and support her efforts to get our parents to finalize their trust agreements, but it’s come to a point where she wants to start selling their belongings and is secretly throwing things away. Tish spends a lot of time looking at keepsakes and telling them who certain items should be given to. We are unable to control her and she becomes belligerent if we disagree with her view of how things should be handled. Should I be grateful for what she does and try to convince my parents that they have less to worry about? I don’t want to be “that” member of the family, but I’m afraid to be. — WATCH IN TEXAS
DEAR LOOKING: Your parents are lucky to be in excellent health, but they must also realize what inevitably awaits them. You would be doing the whole family a favor if you told them that because Tish gets angry and belligerent if someone disagrees with her, they need to talk to an estate planning lawyer, which will avoid the conflicts after their eventual death. After that, the ball is in their court.
DEAR ABBY: Regarding “Nurturer in New York” (April 28), the disabled woman who wants a dog, please suggest a foster home. I am the founder of a rescue and transport organization for shelter dogs. We cannot save lives without our host families! Foster placement gives people looking to adopt the opportunity to eventually meet their ideal dog. It also gives dogs the chance to live in a home and learn the skills they will need to become cherished and beloved members of a human family.
Even though the dog or dogs she adopts may not be the right ones for her, she will still be able to enjoy their company and feel good knowing that she has provided a stepping stone for homeless animals on their way to forever homes. Most shelters and sanctuaries allow foster families to choose the type of animals they wish to foster.
I also liked your suggestion that she considers an older dog. Senior pets are often overlooked in shelters and are happier and more comfortable in a family setting. — NORTH CAROLINA PET PERSON
DEAR PET PERSON: Thanks for writing to comment. Many readers responded to this letter recommending foster care. One from Washington State mentioned “seniors for seniors” programs in which a senior pet is matched with a suitable senior, WITH CONTINUOUS HELP. While “permanent foster homes” allow the animal to be placed with a person, the shelter retains “ownership” of the animal and is responsible for the vet’s bills. This is a worthwhile program for someone who may have the time and love for an animal but not the resources, and it helps get older animals out of shelters.
DEAR ABBY: I am a 46 year old widow. My 18 year old husband passed away 14 months ago. My three children from a previous marriage, which ended due to abuse, are adults. Two of them are still at home, and one of them, my son “Charlie”, has serious health problems. My husband was sick for five years before he died.
Charlie gets upset when I talk about being interested in starting to date someone. He thinks I’m going to abandon him again and that I should be more careful about reconnecting with my kids than trying to develop a new relationship. I don’t see why I can’t have both.
Charlie refuses to leave the house, so taking her out to do stuff isn’t an option. I don’t think he loves me; I feel like he just wants to control me. My other children support me, but they are independent. Am I wrong for wanting to pursue life outside of my home and adult children? — ATTEMPT TO ADVANCE
DEAR ATTEMPT: You’re not wrong to want company, and I’m not talking about the kind you can get from your kids. If Charlie is unable to live independently and needs constant supervision, you should discuss options for him, such as respite care, so you can take a break.
Because you mentioned he has serious health issues, what are the plans for him if you were to die before him? This is a matter that needs to be resolved before there is a crisis, so there will be no surprises and Charlie can be reassured, which may allay his fears and help him become less needy. .
DEAR ABBY: My preteen son is friends with a boy I don’t entirely approve of, but I understand that sometimes bad decisions lead to future wisdom. When I can, I allow the friend to come to our house to spend time with my son because this friend would have a difficult family life.
On this last visit, I noticed them physically a little closer than usual. They shared the same recliner for playing video games, talked to each other using gamer beacons and such, and had what I assume were a lot of inside jokes.
My husband and I would never belittle, degrade or denounce our children for being gay. We know we belong to a bygone era and we don’t assume that our particular values are held by our children. We have discussed this and know how to approach it from our perspective if our son announces his orientation. I’m not even sure that my perception of his closeness to his friend is accurate.
My husband is more worldly than me and he says this kind of behavior is not unusual in the EU. None of us want to fix this problem before anything happens. We will love our son regardless and support him throughout our lives. I don’t want him to feel isolated by what might be habitual pubescent behavior. My husband and I are between 30 and 40 years old. We live in an extremely rural area, and he’s my son’s only real friend. Any idea would be appreciated. — ASK AT THE FARM
DEAR WONDERFUL: You may be jumping to conclusions unnecessarily. Sitting around playing video games and sharing jokes with a best friend are not necessarily signs of being gay. That’s what best friends this age do. Regardless of your boy’s sexual orientation, you’re saying you’ll love and support him regardless, so that shouldn’t be a problem. His sexual orientation will reveal itself in time.
DEAR ABBY: I have a wonderful 31 year old son who is in a relationship with a lovely young woman. It is likely that they will be married in a year or two. They work hard in their careers and enjoy good food and good wine, and I’m happy for both of them.
I have noticed, however, that over the past year my son has steadily gained weight and is having issues with his complexion. I’m afraid he’s gotten into the habit of indulging too much and over time continues to gain weight and drink too much. His girlfriend looks great – she manages her weight very well.
I know my observations will not be welcome, so I do not share them with him. I think it’s the right choice, but it’s really hard to hold back. We discuss health in general, because it’s a mutual interest, but that doesn’t go any further. His father passed away a few years ago, so unfortunately he is not here to share my concerns. What should I do? – WALK LIGHTLY IN NEW HAMPSHIRE
DEAR WALKER: You are a caring parent. But your son is well into adulthood, and I don’t think involving you in his weight issue would be well received. Many people (of both genders) have gained weight over the past two years due to the pandemic. Because of this, you might encourage him to have a medical exam. If you do, her doctor might tell her about her weight gain.
DEAR ABBY: For the past four or five years, I’ve received holiday cards from an ex-girlfriend of mine. I haven’t had contact with her since I met my wife. My wife and I have been together for six years, married for two years. The cards keep coming in and it’s starting to make my wife uncomfortable. How can I respectfully tell my ex to stop texting them? I have nothing in common with this person other than the fact that we were boyfriend and girlfriend in high school. — MARRIED NOW IN MASSACHUSETTS
DEAR GROOM: This old flame may just be trying to be friends and has no intention of posing a threat to your marriage. One way to discourage her might be to send her Christmas greetings AND YOUR WIFE along with a picture of the two of you, your children if you have any, pets, etc. If you’re not sending Christmas greetings, maybe a snapshot of you and your wife on vacation would suffice — or a wedding photo could get the message across.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or PO Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069