Un­friendly face­book ex­change

Cape Breton Post - - LIFESTYLES - Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar An­nie’s mail­box

Dear An­nie: Yesterday, I had an ar­gu­ment with my 85-year-old mother. She said I must be a les­bian be­cause of my re­cent Face­book posts in sup­port of all my gay friends and the Supreme Court de­ci­sion up­hold­ing gay mar­riage. Specif­i­cally, I changed my photo so it was col­ored in beau­ti­ful rain­bow shades.

My mother was ap­palled that I was sup­port­ing “those peo­ple” and de­manded that I change my pic­ture. She said she was em­bar­rassed and claimed that all of her friends were call­ing her to ask whether I was gay. This was a lie and she ad­mit­ted it. Then she said she does not sup­port gay peo­ple and I should sup­port them in more pri­vate ways. I told her I am 50 years old, not 10, and these are my choices. If she doesn’t like it, she doesn’t have to look at my Face­book page.

I have never felt com­fort­able hav­ing my mother as a friend on Face­book. I want to un-friend her, but I’d feel guilty. She has al­ways been this way, and frankly, I’m fed up. She has other friends and fam­ily on Face­book, so it’s not as though she’ll be out of the loop. What do you say? — New York

Dear New York: There are kin­der ways to deal with this rather than un-friend­ing your 85-year-old mother. You can ar­range your pri­vacy set­tings on Face­book to limit what she sees and what she can post on your page. But truly, you are 50 years old and should know how to deal with your big­oted mother by now. Ig­nore her com­ments. Change the sub­ject when she says things you find of­fen­sive and refuse to en­gage her in these point­less ar­gu­ments where nei­ther of you will in­flu­ence the other. Don’t be­come an­gry. Smile, and then do what you want. It’s how chil­dren have dealt with dif­fi­cult par­ents for cen­turies.

Dear An­nie: I’d like to re­spond to “Not Buy­ing Nar­colepsy,” who com­plained that her hus­band sleeps con­stantly. Many peo­ple as­so­ciate nar­colepsy with the way it ap­pears on TV sit­coms, where peo­ple fall asleep mid­sen­tence. But the most com­mon form of nar­colepsy is ex­ces­sive day­time sleepi­ness.

A year ago, I could not sit down with­out fall­ing asleep. I woke up sleepy and prob­a­bly could have slept 12 hours a day and still man­age to fall asleep in my chair. Nar­colepsy can be di­ag­nosed by sleep stud­ies and blood work. Since my di­ag­no­sis by a neu­rol­o­gist and find­ing the right med­i­ca­tion, I have my life back.

Per­haps “Not Buy­ing” should sit down with her hus­band and fill out the Ep­worth Sleepi­ness Scale as a way to be­gin a dis­cus­sion of the med­i­cal rea­sons be­hind his need for such great amounts of sleep. It’s avail­able through the Nar­colepsy Net­work (nar­colep­synet­work.org). I hope this helps. — Wide Awake

Dear Wide Awake: Thank you for the ex­cel­lent re­source. Nar­colepsy isn’t sim­ply about in­suf­fi­cient sleep. It’s a neu­ro­log­i­cal dis­or­der af­fect­ing the way the body reg­u­lates sleep-wake cy­cles. In­for­ma­tion on nar­colepsy is also avail­able through the Na­tional Sleep Foun­da­tion (sleep­foun­da­tion.org). Any­one who is hav­ing prob­lems stay­ing awake should also speak to his or her physi­cian and, if nec­es­sary, ask for a re­fer­ral to a sleep clinic.

An­nie’s Mail­box is writ­ten by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, long­time ed­i­tors of the Ann Lan­ders col­umn. Please

email your ques­tions to an­nies­mail­box@cre­ators.com, or write to: An­nie’s Mail­box, c/o Cre­ators Syn­di­cate,

737 3rd Street, Her­mosa Beach, CA 90254. You can also find An­nie on Face­book at Face­book.com/AskAn­nies. To find out more about An­nie’s Mail­box and read fea­tures by other Cre­ators Syn­di­cate writ­ers and car­toon­ists, visit the Cre­ators Syn­di­cate Web page at www.cre­ators.com.

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