Baby clothes in­her­i­tance plan is spoiled by sib­ling ri­valry

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - YOUR DAILY BREAK - 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. or P.O. Box 69440, Los An­ge­les, CA 90069.

DEAR ABBY >> I have a brother and a sis­ter. I’m the old­est. My hus­band and I have a 3-year-old child and no plans for more chil­dren.

We have been blessed to be able to af­ford nice things for our daugh­ter, and I have saved them in the hope of giv­ing them to my brother and his fi­ancee, who are be­ing mar­ried this year. My brother and I are very close, and I love his fi­ancee. They are not fi­nan­cially well off, so I know it would mean a lot to them.

Now some­thing un­ex­pected has hap­pened. My sis­ter — the youngest — just an­nounced that she’s en­gaged and is be­ing mar­ried in three months. She plans on hav­ing chil­dren ASAP, whereas my brother and his fi­ancee want to wait a year or two af­ter the wed­ding.

My mom and my sis­ter say who­ever has a baby girl first is en­ti­tled to all my stuff, but I don’t want to give all my “trea­sures” to my sis­ter. We have never got­ten along, and she wouldn’t ap­pre­ci­ate them like my brother would. Am I wrong for feel­ing the way I do? What should I do?

— Feel­ing co­erced in Wash­ing­ton


Cross your fingers and hope your sis­ter’s pro­duc­tion line pro­duces all boys. (Just kid­ding.) Your baby items belong to you, not your mother and not your sis­ter. No one is “en­ti­tled” to them. If you pre­fer to give them to your brother’s wife, that’s your priv­i­lege. Your rea­sons seem valid to me.

DEAR ABBY >> I’m 17 and have been in a re­la­tion­ship with “Zane” for three years. We get along beau­ti­fully, but of course we have our is­sues to work through. What upsets me is adults who think our re­la­tion­ship isn’t real be­cause I’m un­der 18. No, Zane and I don’t have bills to pay or chil­dren to raise, but we talk to each other. That’s what I have al­ways thought is the most im­por­tant thing be­tween two peo­ple.

We have fun to­gether, go to church and have mean­ing­ful dis­cus­sions about al­most ev­ery­thing. The only thing my di­vorced parents agree on is that they both love Zane. We know our re­la­tion­ship isn’t per­fect, but we’re com­mit­ted to work­ing on it, be­com­ing closer and un­der­stand­ing each other.

But I keep get­ting com­ments from teach­ers, my friends’ parents, strangers and even Zane’s grandma about how we should be pre­pared for our ro­mance not to last be­cause we’re so young. It’s an­noy­ing and dis­heart­en­ing. How can I prove to these “non-be­liev­ers” that teens feel love and can have sta­ble re­la­tion­ships, too? — Se­ri­ously in love in Maine

DEAR SE­RI­OUSLY IN LOVE >> I don’t blame you for feel­ing frus­trated, be­cause be­ing pa­tron­ized is an­noy­ing. The way to prove to “non-be­liev­ers” that they are wrong is simply to con­tinue suc­cess­fully in your re­la­tion­ship. You ap­pear to be ma­ture, grounded and treat each other well. I don’t know what your plans are for af­ter high school, but if you keep the lines of com­mu­ni­ca­tion open, I see no rea­son why this couldn’t lead to mar­riage one day — and a good one, based on mu­tual re­spect and com­pro­mise.

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