DEAR ABBY: My common-law husband, “Rudy,” my daughter and I are very happy and live an average life. However, like all families, we experience financial pressures from time to time. To supplement our income, Rudy has decided to make and sell a “popular” drug. He says this will be a “one-time thing.” I’m afraid it won’t be, and if he makes a huge profit, he’ll want to continue.

Rudy is a good man. He wants badly to provide for his family. We both work hard at our full-time jobs during the day – and we don’t do drugs. This is like a new world to me and I’m scared. Rudy knows I don’t approve. He thinks he did the right thing by telling me about this beforehand instead of doing it behind my back. We tell each other everything, but that doesn’t make it OK.


What Rudy plans to do is illegal, and because you know about it, you are an accessory. I don’t know how old your daughter is or what kind of drug Rudy is manufacturing, but it cannot be physically or emotionally healthy for her to be around this.

If you think you are having financial pressures now, they’ll seem like a walk in the park if you and Rudy are both doing time in prison. Draw the line – and do it NOW!

DEAR ABBY: I am a 56-year-old grandmother who has been married to “Albert” – my high school sweetheart – for almost 35 years. Yesterday, Albert e-mailed me some information about a wife-swapping club that meets in our neighborhood. I am beside myself!

Albert is the only man I’ve ever been with in my entire life, and to learn that he wants to swap me for another woman is devastating.

I have since checked the “history” on my husband’s computer, and I have learned that he has spent hours on the Internet researching this topic.

Last week, we made love three days in a row. It pleased me no end – until I realized what inspired it. Prior to that, Albert and I have never had sex more than once a week in all the years we’ve been together.

Please help me, Abby. I am ready to pack my bags and leave. Just knowing that he’s serious about wife-swapping makes me sick to my stomach. – DISILLUSIONED IN THE CAROLINAS

Under no circumstances should you allow yourself to be coerced into anything that you feel is immoral. (And spouse-swapping qualifies for that category.)

I don’t blame you for being upset, but don’t pack your bags yet and don’t panic. You and Albert have some serious talking to do, and the sooner the better – preferably in the presence of a marriage counselor. Albert’s craving for variety should be discussed in an environment that is emotionally supportive for both of you. Some couples achieve this through playing out their fantasies together. (Have you seen the yogurt commercial where the wife is dressed up like a French maid?) Good luck … and please let me know how you resolve this.

DEAR ABBY: I am 8 years old and one of my best friends drowned last year. She was only 7. If she had worn a life vest, she wouldn’t have died. Please tell parents that if their kids aren’t good swimmers, they should wear a life vest. – MISSING MY FRIEND IN MARYLAND

Please accept my sympathy for the loss of your friend. That’s an excellent reminder. Now for one of my own: Children and adults should never swim alone.

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 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 $5 (U.S. funds only) to: Dear Abby, Anger Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447.

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