DEAR ABBY: I am 24 years old, married and have no children. I don’t consider myself nervous when I’m around children, but when they’re in my house or car, shouldn’t I be allowed to ask them to stop what they’re doing wrong without the mother getting upset?
My neighbor and I ride twice a week to our dance classes. Her son was head over heels in the backseat with his shoes leaving marks on my back window. When I asked the child to take her feet out of the window, her mother, to my surprise, announced that next time she would drive her own car, which she I was uncomfortable and “expected my future children to be perfect”! She also commented that I am the same way at my house.
Abby, was I wrong not to let you go when I was uncomfortable in my car?
DIRTY IN SANTA FE
DEAR DIRTY: No, you weren’t wrong. In case you forgot, children are required by law to wear seat belts (or sit in a car seat) when in a moving vehicle. In your car and at home, your rules must prevail.
No one should create a mess, and if an accident happens, parents should clean it up.
The woman overreacted. “Mother of the Year” she is not.
DEAR ABBY: I recently found myself in a difficult situation. My whole life I’ve dreamed of marrying a college football player, and for the past eight months I’ve been in a serious relationship with one. Last week he called me and said we should take a break.
Immediately afterwards I ran into a close friend from high school and I think I may be developing feelings for him. He doesn’t have my boyfriend’s good looks, but he is much kinder to me and treats me well.
I’m stuck because my boyfriend called me last night saying he wants to talk over dinner and I think he wants to get back together.
Should I stick with my super-handsome long-term boyfriend or leave him for the guy I know will treat me right?
TOUGH CHOICE IN THE WEST
VERY HARD CHOICE: You don’t marry a profession; you marry a person. A handsome partner who distances himself from you one week and wants to reconcile the next would make a terrible husband.
Take it slow and stay with someone who will treat you right and you’ll have a much happier life. Trust in me.
DEAR ABBY: My 10 year old daughter is a beautiful girl inside and out. She is caring, loving and sweet to everyone.
My only concern is that she still sleeps in bed with her mother. While I am not opposed to this and am willing to sacrifice myself and sleep elsewhere, should I be concerned about her psychological development?
YOUR FATHER IN NORTH CAROLINA
DEAR DAD: Most children in our culture have learned to sleep independently by the age of 2. Your daughter shouldn’t have pushed you away from her marriage bed in the last 10 years, but that’s a separate issue.
Since you are concerned that the sleeping arrangement is detrimental to her psychological development, the resource to consult is a licensed child psychologist.
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.DearAbby.com or PO Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.
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