“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Wilmington, IL

#1 Feb 9, 2014
DEAR ABBY: I have an extremely bright 7-year-old daughter, "Amy," from a previous marriage. Her biological father, "Jake," and I separated when she was an infant. He lives across the country, so while we shared custody, Amy usually saw him only once a year. For a while I called him "Dad" when talking about him to her, but when it became apparent that he wasn't going to be involved in her life (and because I was going to be remarried), we switched to using his first name.

My current husband formally adopted Amy last year, and she couldn't have been happier. Now there's a baby sister, and Amy is overjoyed.

Recently, though, Amy has started asking me why Jake never visits and when she's going to see him again. I don't know what to tell her. I feel it would be crushing to her to say that Jake isn't interested in her anymore, but I also don't want to lie to her.

How do you tell a 7-year-old she should just forget her biological father because he's never going to be there for her?-- ANXIOUS IN HOUSTON

DEAR ANXIOUS: Your daughter needs to come to this realization in stages, and her questions should be answered in an age-appropriate way. Understand that Amy may always be interested in knowing about her biological father, and by the time she is in her teens, she will be computer savvy enough to search him out on the Internet.

For now, tell your daughter that the reason Jake doesn't visit is because he is "busy," and you don't know when he plans to visit. It's the truth.

DEAR ABBY: My brother "Jared" is dating a woman, "Dawn," who is about 10 years younger. They have been seeing each other for about a year. She seems nice and is polite at family gatherings.

I have noticed, however, that whenever I'm spending time with my mother, Dawn is constantly texting or calling her. I'm a grown woman, too, but I never communicated to that degree with any of my boyfriends' mothers.

Jared has told both Mom and me that he isn't even close to wanting to propose marriage. Do you think it's peculiar that Dawn contacts my mother multiple times daily?-- TAKEN ABACK IN GEORGIA

DEAR TAKEN ABACK: Dawn may not have a mother of her own and need a mother figure, which is why she does this. Or she may be attempting to ingratiate herself to her boyfriend's mother because she thinks it will help her land your brother. Not knowing Dawn, I can't say for sure -- but this technique has worked for other women in the past.

DEAR ABBY: My husband and I will celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary this year and I have a question. We'd love to invite a group of our friends to celebrate with us at our favorite restaurant, but we won't be able to pick up the tab. Is there a sensitive way to ask friends to celebrate with us, but get across the message that it'll have to be dutch treat?-- ON A BUDGET IN SAN ANTONIO

DEAR ON A BUDGET: If these are close or longtime friends, I'm sure they won't be shocked that you'll be celebrating your 50th -- especially if some of them were at your wedding. I think the best way to approach this would be to be honest. Tell them that as much as you'd like to entertain everybody, you are unable to, but that you would love it if everyone could meet for dinner at your favorite restaurant and go dutch treat. And be sure to mention that although it's your anniversary, the only gift you would like would be their presence at this happy time.

Since: Dec 09

Smalltown, Colorado

#2 Feb 9, 2014
LW3 - No, no, no. You don't throw a party for yourselves and expect other people (your so-called guests) to pay for it. If you can't afford the restaurant party, throw a get-together at your home with simple snacks and soft drinks. Your friends will have a better time and you will avoid being rude enough to stick them with the bill.
Cass

Claremont, CA

#3 Feb 9, 2014
LW1 - Shift to talking about Jake as a friend rather than her father. Tell her that friends sometimes drift apart, get busy with their own lives, and when they live thousands of miles apart, it is hard to keep up the contact. Jake has a lot of things going on in his life, so he is really too busy to visit, and you have kind of drifted apart. Now, how about come ice-cream, or a game of checkers, or shooting some hoops in the back yard with Dad?

LW2 - Mind. Your. Own. Business. How Dawn interacts with your mother is none of yours.

LW3 - He11 no. Go to the restaurant with your husband - just the two of you. You want to celebrate with friends? Throw a low-cost party at your house: easy to make foods and drinks served buffet-style.
Cass

Claremont, CA

#4 Feb 9, 2014
P.S. to my post above. I get so sick and tired of letters that rant about sticking your guests with a bill for the food and then end up with "Is this a new thing?" Nope, it isn't new. LW3 has got to be at least in her late 60s and probably even in the mid-70s, and she didn't hesitate to ask about a "sensitive way" to stick the guests with the bill. It did not seem to faze her that a decent person simply does not do that. There is no sensitive way to be crass.

Since: Dec 09

Smalltown, Colorado

#5 Feb 9, 2014
Cass wrote:
P.S. to my post above. I get so sick and tired of letters that rant about sticking your guests with a bill for the food and then end up with "Is this a new thing?" Nope, it isn't new. LW3 has got to be at least in her late 60s and probably even in the mid-70s, and she didn't hesitate to ask about a "sensitive way" to stick the guests with the bill. It did not seem to faze her that a decent person simply does not do that. There is no sensitive way to be crass.
Yeah, I was trying to think of a "sensitive" way to be crass, too. Kind of like trying to take dog doodoo and make it smell better - there's just no way.
cheluzal

Plant City, FL

#6 Feb 9, 2014
1: Dad versus Father. He helped create her but current hubby is Daddy.
Age-appropriate as you go.
And ladies, stop having unprotected sex with any moron across the country that shows you attention. Split as an infant? Come on....we could do a lot to prevent too much of this mess.

2: Odd to me too but the person who can put a stop is mom. Either mom adores it or is a big wuss to say stop it.*shrug*

3: I will admit. I did this once. Threw my 29th at a Disney restaurant and people paid for themselves. If they didn't like it, no one told me. I didn't realize how rude it would be, but you have to know--all my friends invite people out all the time and we ALWAYS go dutch In fact, it relieves all the burden and it's never an issue. So...in my group we're cool with it and I like that.
boundary painter

San Antonio, TX

#7 Feb 9, 2014
LW1 isn't giving Houston a bad name. She may as well tell Amy to
give "Jake" time and see if he comes around. Meanwhile, she and her husband can encourage and empower Amy to develop her talents
and interests.

Don't blame LW2's brother for not wanting to marry Dawn.

How dare LW3 give my city a bad name! If LW3 can't afford to treat friends, she can invite them to the house for popcorn and sodas (or whatever they like) or keep her mouth shut and celebrate the 50th anniversary with her husband privately. I want to throw this show off out
of the Lone Star state.

Since: Mar 09

Pittsburgh, PA

#8 Feb 9, 2014
cheluzal wrote:
And ladies, stop having unprotected sex with any moron across the country that shows you attention. Split as an infant? Come on....we could do a lot to prevent too much of this mess.
Jake wasn't "any moron across the country that showed her attention." He was her HUSBAND!

Previous *marriage*, remember?
Kuuipo

Salinas, CA

#9 Feb 9, 2014
LW1: Ever heard of Skype? You should contact Jake and tell him that his daughter has been asking about him. Don't tell your daughter to forget about him. Your daughter will figure out in time that Jake is not "Daddy" material, although he is her bio-father.

LW2: Team Cass. Not your business. Maybe she genuinely LIKES Mom and has a great rapport with her.

LW3:Team Abby, and Happy Anniversary!
Julie

Chicago, IL

#10 Feb 9, 2014
LW2: You left out some crucial info: 1) how does your *Mom* feel about Dawn contacting her multiples times/day? 2) has your brother told your Mom flat-out he doesn't want her having so much communication with Dawn? FWIW, I totally believe Dawn is manipulating your Mom to try to get your brother to make a commitment. Bleccccch.
cheluzal

Plant City, FL

#11 Feb 9, 2014
VAdame wrote:
<quoted text>
Jake wasn't "any moron across the country that showed her attention." He was her HUSBAND!
Previous *marriage*, remember?
Obviously I did not.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#13 Feb 11, 2014
Shari23 wrote:
LW3 - No, no, no. You don't throw a party for yourselves and expect other people (your so-called guests) to pay for it. If you can't afford the restaurant party, throw a get-together at your home with simple snacks and soft drinks. Your friends will have a better time and you will avoid being rude enough to stick them with the bill.
Party? Who said anythong about a party. This is going to dinner with friends. The fact that it is a special occasion does not change that. This has been standard practice among my group of friends forever for birthdays. Meet for dinner and pay your own way just like any other time you would go out to dinner. But we DO bring gifts.

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