Gifts of liquor to re­cov­er­ing al­co­holic are not ap­pre­ci­ated

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - YOUR DAILY BREAK - Dear Abby 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.

DEAR ABBY >> I re­cently got my hus­band back in touch with “Scott,” his best friend from ado­les­cence and col­lege. My hus­band’s ex had kept them apart, so this rekin­dling is ex­tra spe­cial and ap­pre­ci­ated. I don’t want to do any­thing that would jeop­ar­dize it. But Scott’s wife makes me very un­com­fort­able.

She is quiet, re­served, but very ma­nip­u­la­tive. Nei­ther she nor her hus­band are drinkers, but she in­sists on bring­ing a gift of some form of al­co­hol ev­ery time we see them, which is about once a month.

Abby, I am a re­cov­er­ing al­co­holic. I have worked hard for my 11 years of so­bri­ety, and con­tinue to work hard at it ev­ery day. Firm, but po­lite re­quests I have made to her have fallen upon deaf ears. Speak­ing to Scott hasn’t helped ei­ther, be­cause he doesn’t stand up to her. My hus­band also hasn’t been able to get through.

He and Scott tell me to ac­cept the gift and throw it away, or give it to an­other friend. But with ad­dic­tion, it isn’t that easy. I have re­sorted to in­vent­ing ex­cuses not to see them, but I don’t like feel­ing this way.

I be­lieve she gives gifts be­cause it makes her feel good, but at what point does my ex­treme dis­com­fort trump her hap­pi­ness? What can I do to get her to un­der­stand with­out ru­in­ing this re­la­tion­ship? — In a del­i­cate sit­u­a­tion

DEAR DEL­I­CATE >> Have you told Scott’s wife that you are a re­cov­er­ing al­co­holic? If you have, and she per­sists in gift­ing you with liquor when they come over, she is at­tempt­ing to chal­lenge your re­cov­ery. (Could her be­hav­ior be the rea­son your hus­band’s for­mer wife kept them apart?)

Your hus­band’s rekin­dled friend­ship with Scott would not be ru­ined if he sees him on a one-to-one ba­sis rather than the four of you so­cial­iz­ing as cou­ples. And if the clue­less wife hands you an­other bot­tle of booze, that’s what you should in­sist upon.

DEAR ABBY >> I have been talk­ing to some­one I know is a gen­uine per­son, some­one who has all the qual­i­ties I would want in a life­long part­ner. How­ever, I am still in love with my ex.

My ex has moved on but still con­tacts me, and we do deeply care about each other. I’m afraid if I de­cide to move for­ward, I’ll al­ways sec­ond-guess whether or not I did it for the right rea­sons. I’m afraid that be­cause of my feel­ings for my ex, I won’t be able to open up to any­one. I also know we would have many is­sues to re­solve if we ever de­cided to give it an­other chance.

I guess I’m afraid to let go and afraid to move for­ward. What should I do? — Equally torn in the West

DEAR EQUALLY TORN >> Move for­ward as your ex has. And while you are at it, put more dis­tance be­tween the two of you. Whether the per­son you are talk­ing to — who seems to look good on paper — is some­one you’ll wind up with is any­body’s guess. So con­sider tak­ing a break from ro­mance for a while un­til you get your head straight. You’re not there yet, but with time you will be.

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