Chicago Sun-Times Latest news from the Chicago Sun-Times Online en-us (Editor) Newspapers Chicago Sun-Times 84 34 30 Copyright 2014 <![CDATA[ Ways to honor late mom on special day ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: It has been a year since my mother passed away. The month of February was especially tough because it was the month of her birthday and also the month in which she died. Mother’s Day will be here soon, and I’m already feeling bitter, anticipating all of the commercials, advertising, brunches and everything. I don’t want to be bitter about Mother’s Day, but I am. How do people typically celebrate Mother’s Day when they have lost their mother? — Jody in Kearney, Neb. Dear Jody: Please accept my condolences for the loss of your mother. If you have … ]]> Fri, 18 Apr 2014 17:50:48 -0500 <![CDATA[ Girl mistaken for boy needs to speak up ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: I’m a 14-year-old girl with a problem. Because of my buzzed short hair, slim hips and flat chest, I frequently get mistaken for a boy. It really bothers me because, despite my haircut and body shape, I have a feminine face and I wear women’s clothes and makeup. I’m not too much of a tomboy. Sometimes when someone addresses me with a male pronoun or in some other way mistakes me for a male, I’m too nervous to correct them. Is there a clever or witty way to correct the mistake? — Not a Boy in Brooklyn, N.Y. … ]]> Sat, 19 Apr 2014 22:26:44 -0500 <![CDATA[ Tell rude employee behavior must stop ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: How do I deal with an assistant who keeps calling me a “brownnoser”? She did it again yesterday at a staff meeting in front of my boss and another assistant. It was the third time she has said it. She is gruff and rude, and several people have complained to me about her attitude. Should I address her comments during her next employee evaluation, or would it be better to speak to her privately? — The Boss in Lakeland, Fla. Dear Boss: Talk to her privately and tell her what she said is insulting, not funny, and you … ]]> Sat, 19 Apr 2014 22:26:29 -0500 <![CDATA[ Al-Anon can help wife of alcoholic ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: I am a 34-year-old wife and mother of four. I’m concerned about my husband. He is 44 and drinks at home every evening after work. I don’t mind him having a few cans of beer, but he drinks between six and 12 a day. He refuses to see a doctor for checkups or when he is sick. I am worried about his health. The drinking could have an impact, and I would like him to have a physical exam to put my mind at ease. I tell my husband I want him to take care of himself to … ]]> Sat, 19 Apr 2014 22:26:09 -0500 <![CDATA[ Time to dump lying, cheating boyfriend ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: I have been in a long-distance relationship with “Victor” for several years. Recently I began to suspect he was cheating. What raised my suspicion was that I suddenly couldn’t reach him on the weekends. Usually we would Skype -- Sunday night for me, Monday morning for him. Last February when I visited him, I snooped in his phone — spare me the condemnation. I found an email he had written to an old girlfriend in which he suggested they plan their “next” rendezvous. I plan on dumping him, but I don’t know how to go about it. I’ve … ]]> Thu, 17 Apr 2014 17:52:12 -0500 <![CDATA[ Both sexes become victims of abuse ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: I read your Jan. 8 column about the warning signs of an abuser. Would you use your influence to say that men are also victims of abuse? My son was in a three-year relationship with a woman who scored 15 out of 15 on your list. We knew it was a toxic relationship, but he couldn’t see that. The night he came to us for help, battered and bloody, I finally took a stand. It took six months to get her out of his life. My son was ashamed to be a battered man, and she had told … ]]> Tue, 15 Apr 2014 02:42:16 -0500 <![CDATA[ Talking on phone taking a backseat ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: I recently exchanged pleasantries via email and text messaging with a lady I met on a website. One day later, I received a message from her stating she’d prefer our method of communication be kept to email and texting because she wasn’t much of a phone talker. Over the past few months, I have been out a number of times with other women who also expressed their preference to keep communication limited to email and texting. Is this becoming common? I may be old-fashioned because I feel interpersonal relationships — especially initially — should include the element of … ]]> Thu, 17 Apr 2014 17:51:30 -0500 <![CDATA[ On-and-off romance needs more thought ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: I’m in a tricky situation. My boyfriend of four years, “Ian,” and I took a break from our relationship for two months because he was scared he’d miss out on the single life. We started hanging out again soon after, and everything fell into place. We were talking recently, and he mentioned that he’s planning to move across the country to San Francisco to be near his family. He made it plain he wants to live on the West Coast “forever.” I am close to my family — closer than Ian is to his. We’re both 24, and … ]]> Thu, 17 Apr 2014 17:51:05 -0500 <![CDATA[ Do not interfere with service dogs ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: I use a service dog, and I’m constantly barraged with requests to pet him. Other people who use service dogs warned me this would happen. Although the ADA does not require him to wear a vest, I bought one for him that reads, “Do Not Pet,” which he wears in public. They ask me anyway! They also ask what I use the dog for. Sometimes I’m tempted to say, “First, tell me about your medical history and then I’ll tell you mine.” I don’t mind quietly and discreetly discussing with a store owner what my dog does, but … ]]> Sun, 13 Apr 2014 22:25:51 -0500 <![CDATA[ Couple owns money made while married ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: My wife and I were discussing our sons-in-law, and young men in their 20s and 30s in general. We were wondering where the attitude of “any money I earn is mine” in a marriage or live-in situation got started. For the first few years of my daughter and her husband “Joe’s” marriage, Joe resented giving her any of the money he earned. My other daughter’s husband thinks nothing of spending money on himself and his friends without consulting her. We have seen this attitude reflected in their friends as well. They don’t seem to discuss with each other … ]]> Sun, 13 Apr 2014 22:25:37 -0500 <![CDATA[ Don’t rush for fear of losing boyfriend ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: I’m a 27-year-old woman who has never had a boyfriend or been kissed. I was never interested in romance or having a significant other. I felt strong being independent and taking care of myself. Now that I have a degree, a career and a house, I feel ready to try to let a man into my life. I met a really nice guy a month ago. “Brian” and I have gone out several times and have a lot in common. He’s a gentleman, and he says he’s willing to wait for me. I have been having a difficult … ]]> Sun, 13 Apr 2014 22:25:21 -0500 <![CDATA[ Seeking acceptance of transgender mate ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: I’m a divorced woman with grown children. I have always supported gay rights and thought of myself as straight. But a few months ago, I met a woman, “Stephanie.” We hit it off immediately, and I was shocked to learn she’s a transgender woman who was born male. We have spent a lot of time together and are falling in love. Stephanie will be having surgery soon to complete the transgender process. I have been surprised and disappointed by the lack of support from my family and friends, whom I always thought were open-minded. Some have voiced support, … ]]> Sun, 13 Apr 2014 22:25:06 -0500 <![CDATA[ Mother’s problems no one’s business ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: My mother committed suicide when I was a child. She was severely depressed, and although she sought professional help, the worst happened. When conversing with acquaintances, the subject often turns to family, and I will say that my mother “passed away” when I was young. Most of the time they proceed to ask me how she died. Abby, this is a personal family matter. I do not wish to reveal what really happened. I usually reply that she was very ill, but some nosy people persist in pressing for more information. How should I respond without being rude? … ]]> Sun, 13 Apr 2014 22:24:48 -0500 <![CDATA[ Mom who lost baby looks for right words ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: My 1-year-old baby recently passed away. I have two other children, one with special needs. I find it irritating and not at all comforting when people tell me that “at least I have other children and that I should concentrate on them.” How can I politely tell them that I have never stopped taking care of my other children, and that nothing eases the pain of burying your child? — Mourning My Baby  in Puerto Rico Dear Mourning: Please accept my deepest sympathy for the loss of your child. My heart goes out to you. While I can … ]]> Sun, 13 Apr 2014 22:24:34 -0500 <![CDATA[ Wife being ignored by ‘weird’ father-in-law ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: I have been married to my wonderful husband for 10 years. My father-in-law, “John,” has always been a man of extremely few words with me. He mostly just ignores me when I’m around. I have mentioned it to my husband and mother-in-law over the years, and they say he’s just “weird.” Last year, my brother-in-law married a nice woman, “Donna.” It turns out that John talks just fine with her. He’s not overly chatty, but he’s friendly and polite. They had a 20-minute conversation on Christmas Eve, and I don’t remember ever exchanging more than three sentences with … ]]> Sun, 13 Apr 2014 22:24:23 -0500 <![CDATA[ Teen shares friend’s grief without tears ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: I’m 15. Yesterday, they told our class that one of my friend’s parents had died suddenly. Every single person in our grade cried, except for me. I felt bad about not crying for my friend’s loss, but I just didn’t. Another friend told me that last night people were texting, and it had been mentioned several times that I wasn’t crying and that it looked like I didn’t care, even though I do. I feel bad about not crying, but I don’t want to lie and say that I did. Please help me. — Dry-eyed in Colorado Dear … ]]> Sun, 13 Apr 2014 22:24:11 -0500 <![CDATA[ Big night shows lack of planning ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: My boyfriend and I have been together for two years. We recently spent a romantic night at a hotel, complete with dinner, drinks — the whole shebang — that he organized. I know he was a little stressed about money because he mentioned it. He asked if I could shell out some money, which I did, and when the bill came, he asked me if I could shell out some more. I was a little upset because I wasn’t planning on spending that much. He says he is going to pay me back some of it, and now … ]]> Sun, 13 Apr 2014 22:23:57 -0500 <![CDATA[ Don’t make babies just for playmates ]]> Lead story image

Dear Abby: “Maybe Only One in Georgia” (Jan. 7), who asked whether she should have a second child, needs to understand there are no guarantees. Her 5-year-old could end up hating her younger sibling, or adoring her. Parents create a child because they want to share their union with a new life. Each child is unique and represents a life commitment, not just 18 years of hard work. I am the youngest of four, the “surprise” baby boy when my parents were in their 40s. I loved them and they never made me feel unwanted. I adore my older sister. … ]]> Sun, 13 Apr 2014 22:23:42 -0500