DEAR ABBY: I got married to a wonderful guy 14 years ago, but after a year of marriage, our children (his 10-year-old and my 12- and 13-year-olds) couldn’t stand one another and caused a lot of problems. I was brokenhearted when he gave me divorce papers. I moved out but continued to date him without our kids around.
Seven years ago, after his son moved out, I moved back in, but he won’t ask me to remarry him. My kids get along fine with him, but his son hates me and refuses to come to any holiday or birthday celebration that I host.
Should I move out and move on? I feel like I have wasted 14 years of my life. — HOPELESS IN OHIO
DEAR HOPELESS: I wish you had mentioned why this “wonderful guy’s” son hates you. Could it be he blames you for the failure of his parents’ marriage, or was it something else? That this man has allowed his son to dictate how the two of you will spend your lives is very sad. Unless you can accept living with the status quo (which has to be painful), the answer to your question is: Move on.
DEAR ABBY: In 2014, I loaned a family friend $5,000. At the time, and ever since, I never asked the reason for the loan. Over time we lost touch. However, we recently reconnected and decided to go on a road/camping trip throughout the West.
Three days in, we both realized it was a poor idea to travel together for an extended period of time. He has now become quite nasty and speaks ill of me. Should I write and request payment of the loan or let it go? — OUT OF POCKET IN VEGAS
DEAR OUT OF POCKET: If you had the forethought to put IN WRITING the fact you were lending this person money, you have a prayer of having the loan repaid. If you didn’t, you can try writing to this family (former) friend, but legally it won’t be worth the paper your letter is written on. If that’s the case, consider this an expensive lesson.
P.S. Because no effort was made over the last six years to repay your generosity, your road trip was doomed before it started.
DEAR ABBY: I have a very good friend I’ve known for 18 years. Without fail, every time we’re on the phone and she gets another call, she’ll say, “Oh, let me call you right back,” but she never does. Sometimes days will go by until I call her or she calls me, and then she acts like nothing happened.
We could be in the middle of a conversation but she doesn’t call back. Or, she’ll call me while she’s driving somewhere and end the call when she has arrived at her destination, if she hasn’t already hung up to take another call.
Is she a true friend? What should I say or do? After years of feeling unimportant in her life, it has really started to get to me lately. — NOT FINISHED IN THE EAST
DEAR NOT FINISHED: Your longtime friend is inconsiderate. Rather than wait endlessly, call HER back the same day. And when you do, tell her exactly how her lack of concern for your feelings has made you feel. Do not, however, expect her to like it, because inconsiderate people rarely do when it is pointed out to them.
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.