“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Wilmington, IL

#1 Nov 4, 2013
DEAR ABBY: Recently I took a cue from my sister and her career Navy husband. They always make it a point to thank anyone they see in military uniform for his/her service and sacrifice.

I am somewhat shy by nature. But I am so thankful to these men and women who fight for our continued freedom that I stepped out of my comfort zone to verbalize my feelings and encourage those who cross my path.

Abby, the first and second thank-yous I offered did not go well. The first gentleman I spoke to gave me a scornful look and proceeded to tell me I should be thankful for all military personnel -- not just him -- and especially those who gave the ultimate sacrifice of their lives.

I felt 3 inches tall and very embarrassed, but I chalked it up to perhaps having said thanks the wrong way, so I tried again. This time I thanked a World War II veteran. I recognized him as a vet by the emblem on the bill of the cap he was wearing. His response was, "Didn't have a choice -- it was the draft or jail."

Maybe I'm not cut out for verbalizing my thankfulness, or maybe I'm doing it wrong. Now my shyness has taken over again. Should I silently offer a prayer of thanks instead?-- TWICE BITTEN IN WASHINGTON

DEAR TWICE BITTEN: The first person you spoke to may have lost some friends recently, which is why he spoke to you the way he did. Your response to the service member's statement should have been: "Of course you are right. And I am grateful. But you are here, which is why I'm expressing my thanks to you." Period.

As to the WWII vet who entered the service one jump ahead of the law -- give him marks for honesty in admitting his reason for entering the military was less than patriotic. But please don't stop offering thanks. What you experienced was some bad beginner's luck, but each time you express your gratitude, the odds will improve.

DEAR ABBY: A little over a year ago, my husband and I were pulled over after a day on our boat. We had been drinking. My husband was charged with a DUI, went through everything that was required and decided to stop drinking. I am very proud of him. Going to AA meetings has kept him strong, and he has become a better person.

I, on the other hand, like to relax with a beer once in a while, but if I do, I feel guilty. My husband says it's OK, but I feel it might tempt him.

Am I doomed not to be able to drink anymore to support his sobriety, or can I have a beer once in a while and hope he has learned to cope? Is having an occasional beer selfish?-- NEEDS A DRINK IN NEW YORK

DEAR NEEDS A DRINK: When someone describes not imbibing alcohol as being "doomed" and signs off as "needs a drink," I suspect that the individual may be alcohol-dependent to some degree. If there is any chance that your sober husband might crave alcohol if he sees you having a beer, then do it when you're not in his presence. I call that being considerate and "sacrificing" for the greater good.

DEAR ABBY: What do you do when your daughter chooses to raise her kids entirely differently than she was raised, and when she comes for a visit, there's no regard or respect for your stuff?-- UP IN ARMS IN FLORIDA

DEAR UP IN ARMS: You childproof your home, or make sure to see your grandchildren only at their home.

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me!

#2 Nov 4, 2013
1 Where are you meeting these vets, the hospital? I have never encountered such attitude, and I have thanked many.

2 I knew abby would label the LW an alki! Oh, and your husband will probably go back to drinking, and thats ok too, as long as he learns his limits.
Alcoholic is when it impairs your ability to function in your daily life. Missing work, or showing up drunk that kinda stuff, not drinking on your boat.

“On Deck”

Since: Aug 08

French Polynesia

#3 Nov 4, 2013
L2. LOL. Once a drunk, always a drunk.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#4 Nov 4, 2013
L1: I don't think many peple want strangers coming up to them and putting them on the spot. Even if it's with good intentions.

My uncle served in Korea, and by all accounts, whatever he did or saw over there ruined his life. When he died decades later, my mom said it was the Korean War finally catching up to him (he took three weeks and dedicated himself to drinking himself to death). You just never know how someone feels about their military service. However, if someone is making their status public (special license plates, baseball cap, jacket, etc.), I think it's odd that they'd be such a cranky pants over an expression of gratitude.

I like the stories where a military person/couple go to pay their restaurant tab and someone else has already covered it, anonymously.

L2: My god, stop bugging your husband and just enjoy your drink. Your husband obviously felt like his drinking had gotten control of him rather than being in control of his drinking, and responded accordingly. If he were really an alcoholic, I think there'd be more of a struggle there.

L3: Or you set some ground rules for how children are to behave in your home, and you and your DAUGHTER enforce them.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#5 Nov 4, 2013
". If he were really an alcoholic, I think there'd be more of a struggle there. "

That was a poor comment on my part, I think. I shouldn't generalize as to whether someone is an alcoholic based on their struggle, or lack thereof, to quit.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Chicago, IL

#6 Nov 4, 2013
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
L1: I don't think many peple want strangers coming up to them and putting them on the spot. Even if it's with good intentions.
Aren't you the one who wanted to congratulate newly married gay couples as they were coming out of the courthouse?

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

Location hidden

#7 Nov 4, 2013
RACE wrote:
1 Where are you meeting these vets, the hospital? I have never encountered such attitude, and I have thanked many.
2 I knew abby would label the LW an alki! Oh, and your husband will probably go back to drinking, and thats ok too, as long as he learns his limits.
Alcoholic is when it impairs your ability to function in your daily life. Missing work, or showing up drunk that kinda stuff, not drinking on your boat.
Maybe its because eh ocean s bigger than the lakes around here but there are way too many Chicago news reports about people being hurt and killed by drunk boaters. I lost a favorite grad school prof that way.

That said, I don't agree that saying you are doomed never to have a beer again signals an alky.

I have a good friend who struggles with the stuff; I support his efforts at sobriety but thee are times when he is not drinking when really have a taste for a drink and the sociability that goes with it and I feel resentful that he can't control his intake once he gets started.

L3 I have been ticking off a list of things Grandma is irritated about.

No manners
Run around and break things
Damn Catholics
Damn liberals
Recycling nazi
Initiates conversation with adults and doesn't wait to be spoken to.
Asks for food; asks for food they like.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#8 Nov 4, 2013
edogxxx wrote:
<quoted text>
Aren't you the one who wanted to congratulate newly married gay couples as they were coming out of the courthouse?
That was ONLY on the first day it was legal, and those gay couples were purposely choosing those midnight weddings -- they were opting for public ceremonies and public acknowledgement. otherwise, no, I wouldn't bother people getting married, gay or straight.

“The two baby belly, please!”

Since: Sep 09

Evanston IL

#9 Nov 4, 2013
LW1: I think you can be appreciative without having to say something to every serviceperson you see on the street. Donate to one of the many charities set up for vets; their gonna need it now that food stamp funds have been cut.

LW2: Geez, have your drink and stop with the self-inflicted guilt trip.

LW3: It's your house, do not let the little beasties destroy it. YOU step up and say something if the mother doesn't. If it continues, then I guess you'll be visiting them somewhere other than your house.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Chicago, IL

#10 Nov 4, 2013
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
they were opting for public ceremonies and public acknowledgement.
Guess that makes them attention wh0 res.
Kuuipo

Monterey, CA

#11 Nov 4, 2013
LW1: I agree with Red and squishymama. It't not necessarily your approach as much as it is the service member's comfort with your expression of gratitude. Squishymama's suggestion of donating to a vet's charity is great; also check for charities that help support service members' families while they are deployed.

LW2: How occasionally are we talking? Maybe you can find other ways to relax. I have family members in the program and we don't drink alcohol in their presence out of respect. I'm not saying that's the only way to handle the situation, but think about it.

LW3: Put the breakables away and have lots of toys for them to play with in a child-friendly room.

Since: Jun 09

Saint Petersburg, FL

#12 Nov 4, 2013
LW3: Why can't the grandmother say something to the little terrors if they are in her home?
Kuuipo

Monterey, CA

#13 Nov 4, 2013
Stina2 wrote:
LW3: Why can't the grandmother say something to the little terrors if they are in her home?
She can, but you know how some people get when they feel like you're criticizing their parenting skills. And I have a strong feeling that they've gone a few rounds over this topic already.

Since: Jun 09

Saint Petersburg, FL

#14 Nov 4, 2013
Kuuipo wrote:
<quoted text>
She can, but you know how some people get when they feel like you're criticizing their parenting skills. And I have a strong feeling that they've gone a few rounds over this topic already.
Probably. But I know when my niece and nephew have visited my mom and gone crazy, my mom has no problem nicely saying please don't touch the glass on that shelf or please don't sit on the coffee table or don't throw that or whatever.

And I have NO problem with her telling my kid to get in line when need be.
Kuuipo

Monterey, CA

#15 Nov 4, 2013
Stina2 wrote:
<quoted text>
Probably. But I know when my niece and nephew have visited my mom and gone crazy, my mom has no problem nicely saying please don't touch the glass on that shelf or please don't sit on the coffee table or don't throw that or whatever.
And I have NO problem with her telling my kid to get in line when need be.
And she claims to have raised the daughter to have respect for her things so she must know how to set limits. So why did she need to write an advice columnist?

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#16 Nov 4, 2013
Kuuipo wrote:
<quoted text>
And she claims to have raised the daughter to have respect for her things so she must know how to set limits. So why did she need to write an advice columnist?
I suspect it's the usual "If I say anything that pisses off my loser adult child, she's retaliate by taking away access to the grandkids."
Kuuipo

Monterey, CA

#17 Nov 7, 2013
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
<quoted text>
I suspect it's the usual "If I say anything that pisses off my loser adult child, she's retaliate by taking away access to the grandkids."
HA! Of course!

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