Di­vorced man has af­fairs with two mar­ried women

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

Dear Abby: My son has taken it upon him­self to get ro­man­ti­cally in­volved with two dif­fer­ent mar­ried women. He’s newly di­vorced af­ter a long mar­riage and hates the idea of be­ing alone. He says he loves them both, but re­al­izes there’s no fu­ture with ei­ther one, so he’s try­ing to ex­tri­cate him­self from the jam he’s got­ten into. The prob­lem is, the women refuse to let go, and it’s caus­ing all sorts of prob­lems. Any ideas?

— Dad in the Mid­dle in New York

Dear Dad: If you are smart, you’ll stay out of this mess. Hasn’t it oc­curred to you that if your son was truly un­happy with the sit­u­a­tion, he — not you — would have sought help for his prob­lem?

He doesn’t love ei­ther of those women; he loves what he’s get­ting from them — at­ten­tion, com­pan­ion­ship, sex. Be­cause they are mar­ried, he doesn’t have to worry about them want­ing a com­mit­ment from him as a sin­gle woman might. If he re­ally wanted to stop th­ese dolls from “stalk­ing” him, he would threaten to make their hus­bands aware of what’s been go­ing on, and THAT would be the end of it.

Dear Abby: I am 15 and my mom was re­cently di­ag­nosed with can­cer. My two older sis­ters are away in col­lege, and my dad works all the time. How should I bal­ance tak­ing care of Mom, do­ing school­work and play­ing field hockey? I wish I could give each task my full at­ten­tion, but I’m not go­ing to be home much be­cause of school. — Jug­gling in Penn­syl­va­nia

Dear Jug­gling: I am sure your mother’s di­ag­no­sis has caused stress for ev­ery mem­ber of your fam­ily, in­clud­ing those who are away, and for that I am sorry. You are so young, and I can only imag­ine the stress you are feel­ing.

If you were dis­cussing this with your mother, I am sure she would tell you — as I am — how im­por­tant it is that you keep up with your school­work and ac­tiv­i­ties. You can­not as­sume the en­tire re­spon­si­bil­ity for her care by your­self. Who will help her dur­ing her treat­ments, and how much time you should real­is­ti­cally de­vote, is some­thing both your par­ents should help you to de­ter­mine. None of you will re­ally know how much as­sis­tance she’ll re­quire un­til the pro­cess is started, so be flex­i­ble and take things a step at a time.

Dear Abby: My mom owns two suc­cess­ful women’s cloth­ing stores near my home­town. The prob­lem is, she named them af­ter me, and I hate it!

I’ve tried talk­ing to her about it many times, but ev­ery time I bring it up she gets sar­cas­tic, says things like, “This is a fun con­ver­sa­tion,” and doesn’t let me get a word out. I have tried talk­ing to the rest of my fam­ily about it, but they don’t con­sider it a big deal and tell me I’m be­ing ridicu­lous. I have run out of ideas about what to do, so if you could give me some ad­vice, it would re­ally help. — An­gry Daugh­ter

Dear An­gry Daugh­ter: Many daugh­ters would con­sider what your mother did to be a com­pli­ment. How­ever, be­cause it both­ers you so much, con­sider go­ing by your MID­DLE name. And, if that doesn’t sat­isfy you, and you feel strongly enough about this, go to court and legally change your name to an­other one you like when you reach adult­hood.

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