Posted in the Chicago Forum
Since: Jun 09
#1 Mar 2, 2013
DEAR AMY: My sisterís husband is an alcoholic. He makes half-hearted attempts to get treatment, and then goes on another binge. When heís drinking and gets verbally abusive, my sister shows up at my place to crash for a few days, until heís sober again.
This has been going on for years. I love my sister, and I will always be there for her, but I am getting fed up.
Whenever she shows up at my door, she says she will leave him. Then she goes back and tells me he has apologized, heís getting treatment ó and then the whole cycle replays itself again and again.
I know she is ďenablingĒ him by not giving him an ultimatum and not moving out (her finances are tight, but since she is paying their rent now, I know she could afford a place of her own).
Am I enabling her by letting her crash on my couch time after time? Do any of your readers who have been through this have any advice?-- Fed Up
DEAR FED UP: You are enabling your sister. Your availability as a crash pad provides an escape hatch, not only from her domestic emergencies, but also from her anxiety. It also helps her delay making a tougher decision. You, basically, are part of this marriageís system.
If you want out, tell her so. Ask her,ďWhat would you do if I wasnít here? What would you do if you didnít have any other place to go until your husband sobered up?Ē
Tell her you donít want to be involved in her marriage anymore and that itís time for her to find another place to live so she can move out for good. Take her apartment hunting. I donít think you should turn her away, but you should make it more uncomfortable for her to fall onto your couch.
Iím sure readers will share their ideas.
DEAR AMY: Iím a girl in high school, and I have a bit of a problem. Last year I was bored and went on a Web site and ended up meeting this guy (who is my age). Weíve been texting, calling and Skyping ever since. I really like this guy, but Iíve never actually met him in person, and he lives in a different state.
First of all, is it worth having feelings for someone you might not meet for years and who you donít get to actually hang out with?
Iíve come to look forward to talking to him every day, and donít know what Iíd do if it stopped. I hope he or my parents donít see this.-- Wondering
DEAR WONDERING: You almost had me ó until your last sentence. Thereís nothing wrong with having a long-distance relationship, and itís increasingly common for people who have never met in person to engage through phone, Facebook, text and Skype. This particular relationship raises all sorts of red flags (for instance, you likely arenít able to verify a single thing about each other). It is also impeding your motivation to do the hard work to meet and interact with people in person.
But the most important thing about it is the secrecy. It is wrong to have a secret relationship. It just is.
DEAR AMY: I was moved by the letter from ďTonya.Ē She witnessed a man abusing his dog in public.
Your reply brought back a memory from around 1963. One day I was walking on a city street, and I saw a man smack his young child (about 2 years old) across the face twice. I failed to do anything.
Today, even though I am 71, I would flip on my cellphone, hit the 911 button and call the police and then smack the guy and hold him until the police came to charge him with child endangerment. I have long remembered my failure to act.-- Kenneth in Minn.
DEAR KENNETH: Thank you so much for sharing this story. Over the years I have heard from people saying their parents physically abused them and others either witnessed it or knew about it. Their bewilderment about why no one intervened is heartbreaking. Intervening is much easier (and safer) now that it can be done from a distance, by dialing a phone.
Since: Mar 09
#2 Mar 2, 2013
L1: "Am I enabling her...?" Yes. Amy's [intern's] advice is good.
L2: Why don't you want your parents to know about this guy? As far as the feelings thing, you basically can't help how you feel, but if you think it's pointless then scale back the contact and spend time with people in person.
L3: Kenneth, your 71-year-old ass would get pounded so quick you wouldn't know what hit you. Call 911, okay. Get physically involved and you're asking for trouble. BIG trouble. You could get hurt or killed or end up with assault charges against YOU.
“Where is Everyone?”
Since: Jul 12
#3 Mar 2, 2013
L1: Make it a condition that SHE gets therapy to deal with her issues that she is not dealing with her hsuband as a condition to flop at your house.
L2: Tell your parents and then contact Nev who has Catfish tv program. He'll help you get together with this guy.
Has anyone here watched that program, Catfish? It's on MTV. Interesting.
L3: Jamwow has it right. It can be a dangerous thing to physically get involved.
#4 Mar 2, 2013
IS LW2 not allowed to date/like boys at her school
or why doesn't she want her parents to know she's
interested in what seems to be an okay boy?
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