Dear Abby: When my boyfriend found out I have the money to do it, he asked me to pay off his car. Now, because I said no, he won’t answer the phone or talk to me. I have helped him in the past, but he continues to ask me for money. I think he’s using me. He tries to make me feel guilty by accusing me of not caring about him because, “If I did, I would pay off his car.”
I’m 58 years old, and the money I have is for me to live comfortably, not to spend on him. I told him as much, and he still insists I should help him with his bills. We live separately, and I suspect he’s really just interested in the money, but I’m afraid of being lonely. What should I do?
Well-off in the South
Dear Well-off: There are worse things than being lonely (for a while). Chief among them is knowing you are being used by someone who cares nothing about you beyond what he can extract from you. What you “should” do is kick him to the curb and not look back. There are better days ahead for you if you do.
Dear Abby: My husband and I are having a hard time navigating a recurring situation in our marriage. My husband is friendly with three brothers. They hang out often and sometimes drink. Their sister sometimes hangs out with them, too.
I’m uncomfortable with my husband getting drunk when she’s around. He continues to do it, though, in spite of my concerns. Last night, he was at his friend’s house from 11 p.m. until 6 a.m. She was there for part of the drinking and partying. I really have a hard time with this. What should we do?
Uncomfortable in the West
Dear Uncomfortable: Although coming home at 6 a.m. is awfully late, it may have happened because he was too drunk to drive home earlier. I have trouble believing anything untoward would happen with the sister in the presence of her three brothers. Has your husband done anything to cause your insecurity? If not, you need to work on your jealousy and trust issues. If, however, he HAS, then you need to work TOGETHER to get to the root of what is going wrong in your marriage.
Dear Abby: My son’s fiancee has just informed me that I need to send her my guest list for the wedding, and she will let me know to whom she will send invitations. When I asked if she meant that there was a limited number of guests, she said no, but she didn’t want people there who didn’t mean anything to her. She’s from the East Coast, and my son met her in college in another state, so she doesn’t know many of our family members or friends. How do I respond to this? Thank you.
Dear Mother: It appears your son’s fiancee has “forgotten” that after marriage there are two sides to the family. Respond by bringing your son into the conversation. He’s in the perfect position to explain to his bride-to-be who the people on the guest list are so she’ll have some insight about whom to invite. (Include those details on the proposed guest list you send to them.) That information will be important to her during the wedding celebrations and also (fingers crossed) during their long, happy life together.
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.