Dear Abby: I ended my 24-year marriage after learning my wife, in addition to several one-night stands, had an affair with a married couple for nine years. She also gave me an STI. I was faithful, though I admit to being difficult to live with.
We were unable to agree on parenting, finances, health, fitness, diet, religion, politics and more. I worked hard, but I was a present and active father, attending all games, concerts and activities, as well as coaching and teaching my children in music and the arts.
In the pursuit of helping other men deal with the grief of infidelity, divorce and mental health, I began sharing my experience on a social media platform. My oldest child has now chosen to “write me off” and refuses to speak to me. I’m hurt, but I respect her decision. I will not silence my story, as it is a tool of empowerment for other men. Is there a way to build a relationship with this adult child?
Disappointed Dad in the Midwest
Dear Dad: Your daughter may be embarrassed or angry because you are publicly labeling her mother as an adulteress. Once she matures she is willing to concede that there are often two sides to every story, she may mend fences, but it won’t happen until she is ready, and you cannot force it.
Dear Abby: I have noticed so many obituaries omit where the person worked. A lot of people worked at the same places for many years. Coworkers and acquaintances I’m sure would like to pay respects to those who have passed. Too often, by the time they find out, the person has been laid to rest.
My late wife was a nurse for almost 40 years and came in contact with many people. The outpouring of love from family, friends and acquaintances from her social and work lives was overwhelming and heartfelt. They say if we have memories of our loved ones touching others’ lives, they live on in our hearts forever.
People, please don’t let their memories fade. Let families know to include the work history of their loved one in the obituary, particularly if they had jobs dealing with the public.
Remebering Well in Ohio
Dear Remembering: Because the obituaries one reads in the newspaper are costly, it’s possible the writers try to keep them brief in order to save money. I am, however, printing your helpful reminder for those who may need it.
Dear Abby: I was wondering, even though we call our priests “Father,” can I also call him “Dad”? Why or why not?
Pondering in the West
Dear Pondering: I posed your question to Father Guy Gurath, a longtime friend in the Milwaukee archdiocese. He chuckled and told me this is a standing joke among Catholics, who have been known to refer to the rectory as the “Home for Unwed Fathers.” (!) He went on to say the formal answer to your question is no. Calling a priest “Dad” is likely to offend some people. He suggests the correct terms “Father,” “Reverend” or “Pastor” be used. Thank you, Father Guy.
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 P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.