Dear Abby

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - FEATURES - Abi­gail Van Buren 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 or P.O. Box 69440, Los An­ge­les, CA 90069. To or­der “How to Write Let­ters f

Grandma-to-be can't muster en­thu­si­asm she wants to feel

DEAR ABBY: My daugh­ter-in­law, “Eden,” is mar­ried to my daugh­ter. Eden is now preg­nant via ar­ti­fi­cial in­sem­i­na­tion. I will never meet the donor and know al­most noth­ing about him. Could this be why I don’t have the en­thu­si­asm for this preg­nancy that I should have, since the baby will be my first grand­child?

I feel guilty that I’m not ex­cited. I’m won­der­ing if it’s be­cause there is no blood con­nec­tion, but nei­ther would there be if the baby were adopted. Eden is due in a month. We live close by, and I need to gen­er­ate some en­thu­si­asm. Any sug­ges­tions? — GRANDMA-IN­WAIT­ING

DEAR GRANDMA: Yes. Start by do­ing all the things you would if you were ex­cited about this grand­child. Be as par­tic­i­pa­tory as your daugh­ter and daugh­terin-law will al­low. If you do, while I can’t guar­an­tee that you will feel a bond with the baby, your chances of forming one will be greater. And please stop feel­ing guilty. Re­la­tion­ships take time to build, and this is no ex­cep­tion.

DEAR ABBY: My hus­band and I are fac­ing a big de­ci­sion: whether to move to a bet­ter school dis­trict for our daugh­ter. The one we’re in doesn’t rate high, and yes, we can af­ford to move to a more elite area.

So what is hold­ing us back? Our won­der­ful neigh­bours!

They are our best friends. Our hus­bands are close, and it’s the same with our kids — even the dogs. We va­ca­tion to­gether and take turns car­pool­ing to school in the morn­ings. They have wel­comed my daugh­ter into their home, and ditto for us and their chil­dren. Are we fools to walk away from such con­tent­ment and love? — HEAVY DE­CI­SION IN PENN­SYL­VA­NIA

DEAR HEAVY DE­CI­SION: If you and your friends are close for rea­sons other than geography and con­ve­nience, your re­la­tion­ship with them should be a last­ing one. How­ever, your daugh­ter’s ed­u­ca­tion should come first, and if they are true friends, they will understand why you are making the move.

DEAR ABBY: As some­one on a sec­ond mar­riage, may I point some­thing out to your read­ers? An en­gage­ment is not mar­riage. Peo­ple need to take a hard look at the per­son they are choos­ing to spend the rest of their lives with, and understand that they can­not change an­other per­son. Red flags should be ad­dressed dur­ing the en­gage­ment. That lit­tle an­noy­ance will grow and has the po­ten­tial to blos­som into a huge is­sue.

Coun­selling can be won­der­fully use­ful, but bear in mind it can take sev­eral tries to find a coun­sel­lor who clicks with you.

Take it from me, di­vorce is hor­ri­ble and can cause dam­age that can never really be un­done. — EX­PE­RI­ENCED IN TEN­NESSEE

DEAR EX­PE­RI­ENCED: You’re right; prob­lems don’t solve them­selves, and peo­ple in love don’t al­ways think ra­tio­nally. How­ever, I hope they will pay at­ten­tion to your ex­cel­lent ad­vice be­cause I couldn’t have said it bet­ter my­self.

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