Dear Abby Wife fears hus­band’s health puts her fu­ture in jeop­ardy.

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - ISLAND WEEKEND - 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. What teens need to know about sex, drugs, AIDS and

DEAR ABBY: I am the 24/7 care­giver for my hus­band, “Earl.” We were both wid­owed when we mar­ried nine years ago.

His daugh­ter, “Mindy,” hasn’t talked to her fa­ther for six years — hasn’t called, emailed or even sent a birth­day card. If he tried call­ing her, she wouldn’t pick up.

Re­cently, Earl had a se­ri­ous health prob­lem re­sult­ing in a colostomy bag. I take care of ev­ery­thing. When he called to tell Mindy, her hus­band an­swered the phone and said she wasn’t home. When my hus­band told him about his health, the son-in-law said OK, noth­ing more. Then Earl in­vited the whole fam­ily to come here. Again, the re­sponse was, “I don’t know.”

Af­ter Earl hung up, I said, “I think it’s time Mindy came here to take care of you.” (Six years ago she told my hus­band, “Dad, if you die first, I’ll get that woman out of the house in three days!”)

Abby, must I wait for this to hap­pen or should I just pack my stuff and move out, leav­ing a vul­ner­a­ble 88-year-old man alone? Mindy will put him in a nurs­ing home and sell the house to pay off her credit card debt — some of it, be­cause the house isn’t worth much money.

Earl says, “Don’t leave me, I need you!” Well, what about me? Where is my life and my se­cu­rity? I’m get­ting older. If he lives another 10 years, it will take a toll on my health, and I’ll be mov­ing?

Should I seek com­pen­sa­tion for my care­giv­ing? I pay all my own ex­penses. I don’t pay rent. That was the main con­cern from his rel­a­tives when we got mar­ried. I was a widow and had a job and a condo, which I sold. I put the money in the bank and used cash to pay for a new car, a com­puter, a wheel­chair for my hus­band, etc.

Don’t I have to plan for my fu­ture in my old age? Or should I leave it up to God and hope He takes me be­fore my hus­band? I need your ad­vice. — WOR­RIED WIFE IN FLORIDA

DEAR WOR­RIED WIFE: You’re right to be con­cerned about your fu­ture. That’s why, be­fore mak­ing any de­ci­sions, it is im­por­tant you con­sult a lawyer and learn what your rights are as a wife in the state of Florida. You should not have to worry about be­ing thrown out into the street be­cause Earl’s daugh­ter has money prob­lems and is look­ing to cash in. If you love your hus­band, your place is be­side him for as long as the good Lord al­lows.

DEAR ABBY: I am 16. I came home from a date and my mom is flip­ping out over my hick­ies. I think this is stupid. These are my first ones, and my par­ents are mak­ing a big deal about it. What do you think? — MARKED IN NE­WARK, DEL.

DEAR MARKED: I think it’s time you had a talk with your par­ents about why they re­acted the way they did, so they can ex­plain it to you. Your hick­ies aren’t what up­set them. They are wor­ried about you be­cause they are afraid of what the hick­ies may lead to, if they haven’t al­ready.

Abi­gail Van Buren Dear Abby

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