DEAR ABBY: I had an affair with a married man several years ago. It ended, and now I am friends with his wife. I want very much to tell her about the affair because I feel so guilty about it. I see her every day. She has joined the same church I go to, put her kids in the same school as my kids, and we go to all the same parties and have the same friends.
Everyone knows about the affair except her, and I feel uncomfortable every time I talk to her husband or when conversations arise regarding cheating. I know I’ll feel more comfortable around her if I get this off my chest. Should I tell her? – FEELING GUILTY IN SOUTH NEW JERSEY
DEAR FEELING GUILTY: I see no reason to make this woman suffer so that you can feel better. If you feel you MUST confess, confess to someone who won’t be hurt to hear the news – such as a clergyman. They’ve heard just about everything.
DEAR ABBY: I’m a 20-year-old college student caught in a turmoil of emotion. My parents were divorced two years ago. It left my mother and me on our own. Not long after, to my great joy, my mom was back in the dating world.
I was shocked the night Mom brought one of her dates home to meet me. She later explained that it was time for me to become aware of her new lifestyle. She was now living her life as a lesbian, and I had to accept it.
I immediately moved in with my father and refused to return my mother’s phone calls. I miss her, but I can’t come to terms with this. What should I do? – DESPERATE IN DETROIT
DEAR DESPERATE: Judge not, lest ye be judged.
DEAR ABBY: Please tell me how to politely inform our friends that their daughter, “Jane,” who is 12 and a special-needs child, needs a bra. My wife picks up Jane and our daughter every day after school, and their teacher has asked us to talk to her parents. Jane’s parents seem oblivious to the obvious.
Please help, before the situation gets any bigger. – PERPLEXED DAD IN TEXAS
DEAR PERPLEXED: The person to discuss this with Jane’s parents should first be the teacher. If she has already done so and your friends continue to ignore the problem, then your wife should approach Jane’s mother and say something – and perhaps offer to go shopping with them. It’s possible that they are in denial about the fact that their “baby” is becoming a woman.
DEAR ABBY: I recently inherited a substantial amount of money from my great-grandmother. I want to start a college fund for my younger cousins.
Here’s the problem: My uncle (their father) has two children with his girlfriend, who also has two children from a previous marriage. I want to give the money only to the cousins who are related to me, and announce what I’m planning on my grandparents’ anniversary.
My fear is that I will cause a “bad vibe” between my uncle and me since I’m excluding his “stepchildren.” How should I handle this? – LOVING COUSIN IN ORLANDO
DEAR COUSIN: Rather than make a public announcement of your intention at the celebration, I suggest you speak privately to your uncle and tell him what you have in mind. That you want to share your great-grandmother’s bequest with those children who are related to her is admirable – but the offer should be made with delicacy and sensitivity so that it does not cause a rift in your uncle’s family.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.
Good advice for everyone – teens to seniors – is in “The Anger in All of Us and How to Deal With It.” To order, send a business-size, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $6 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby, Anger Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Postage is included.)