Dear Abby: I used to be a successful working woman until I lost my husband of 30 years. After I became homeless, I met “Tom.” We’ve been good friends for the last five years, hanging out in the woods, sometimes getting hotel rooms. It’s a platonic relationship, but we rely on each other. I receive Social Security survivor benefits now, and I want to move on and get my own place. He says he’s fine with it, but I feel terribly guilty. He gets a small disability check but is not wise with money. How can I comfort him?
Guilty in Florida
Dear Guilty: Tom has told you he is fine with you upgrading your living situation. I presume that you don’t intend to desert him. Believe him and stop flogging yourself for your good fortune. Help him when you can and encourage him to contact an agency that helps the homeless so he can get his life back on track, too.
Dear Abby: I’m in a same-sex relationship with a woman I love and admire. But five months in, sex is becoming impossible because I think I’m heterosexual. Leaving this relationship scares me because I can’t imagine a life without her. I told her I didn’t know if, for several reasons, sex would be a part of our relationship, but that I do love her. She doesn’t seem to mind at all. I’m not sure what to do. Please help.
Loving in Louisiana
Dear Loving: What you need to do is be honest with your partner. It is possible that you are bisexual and need to explore relationships with men before making up your mind about any permanent relationship. If sex is important to you, then the person you wind up with may not be this woman you love and admire, but someone else entirely.
Dear Abby: My grandson died by suicide in 2019. My daughter, who lives in another state, hasn’t spoken to me since. Why? Because we did not call her on the phone. We were texting her, and she was texting us back. When I did try to call, she wouldn’t answer the phone. It has been more than a year now. She won’t respond to other family members, either. Please advise me what to do in this sad situation.
Wounded Grandma in Texas
Dear Grandma: Not knowing your daughter, I am hesitant to guess why she has isolated herself from everyone. She may have felt she was entitled to more support from you all and didn’t receive it. As many people have pointed out in my column, while texts may be efficient, they are a poor substitute for a human voice. Because she refuses your calls, write her a letter telling her you love her and apologize for letting her down after the tragedy of losing her son. Whether it will help, I can’t guess — but at least the olive branch will have been offered.
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.