Ca­nine causes con­tention years af­ter re­la­tion­ship ends

Austin American-Statesman - - THE PLANNER - Jeanne Phillips Dear Abby

Dear Abby: My ex-boyfriend and I broke up two years ago. We were to­gether for nearly three years. A year into our re­la­tion­ship, we res­cued a puppy. We broke up when she was 2. Since then, we have shared her on and off. This ar­range­ment worked fine be­cause we have both been sin­gle.

I am now in a new re­la­tion­ship and feel that my ex and I should cut ties. We re­cently had a fall­ing out, but he still wants to share the dog “un­til she is no longer in the pic­ture.”

Abby, I don’t feel that it’s fea­si­ble for us to con­tinue shar­ing our dog for the next 12 to 15 years. My ex has post-trau­matic stress dis­or­der (PTSD), and I know she helps him. How­ever, I feel like I can pro­vide a bet­ter home for her and give her more at­ten­tion. How do we de­cide who gets to keep the dog? — Still in the Pic­ture

Dear Still in the Pic­ture: You have a new boyfriend. Your ex has PTSD and needs her more than you do. Un­less the an­i­mal was some­how mis­treated when she was with him, let him have her.

Dear Abby: I work as a med­i­cal re­cep­tion­ist for a busy pri­vate prac­tice. We get a lot of pa­tients from other coun­tries, and English is not their pri­mary lan­guage. Speak­ing to th­ese pa­tients over the phone is of­ten very dif­fi­cult. How can I ask nicely for pa­tients to con­stantly re­peat them­selves? I need to make sure I have the cor­rect in­for­ma­tion so the doc­tor can treat the pa­tient prop­erly. — Re­cep­tion­ist in Mary­land

Dear Re­cep­tion­ist: Ask your em­ployer how he or she wants those calls han­dled. There is no crime in repeating and re-repeating im­por­tant in­for­ma­tion to be sure it is right. If the pa­tient has a fam­ily mem­ber who ac­com­pa­nies him/her to ap­point­ments, per­haps it can be ar­ranged that that per­son call the doc­tor’s of­fice to con­vey any nec­es­sary in­for­ma­tion.

Dear Abby: For my birth­day my hus­band bought me an ex­pen­sive de­signer purse. It was a dream come true to own this purse and I love it. My prob­lem is it’s so ex­pen­sive that I’m em­bar­rassed to wear it around in pub­lic. I don’t want to look like a show-off. I don’t know why I care, and prob­a­bly most peo­ple don’t care about what kind of purse I’m car­ry­ing. Why can’t I en­joy the gift from my hus­band? — Se­cret in the Closet

Dear Se­cret: Not ev­ery­one is com­fort­able dis­play­ing the fact they have the kind of dis­pos­able in­come that af­fords them the abil­ity to buy lux­ury goods. There are mul­ti­ple rea­sons for this. Some women don’t want the at­ten­tion, others feel guilty that they have the money while their friends do not, some are afraid that if they “f lash” it will ex­cite jeal­ousy, and others fear for their safety.

For an ex­cel­lent guide to be­com­ing a bet­ter con­ver­sa­tion­al­ist and a more so­cia­ble per­son, or­der “How to Be Pop­u­lar.” Send your name and mail­ing ad­dress, plus check or money or­der for $7 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby, Pop­u­lar­ity Book­let, P.O. Box 447, Mount Mor­ris, IL 61054-0447. (Ship­ping and han­dling are in­cluded in the price.)

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