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Dear Annie: I have a problem with my friend “Julie” that I’m not sure how to handle. She’s a really good friend in many ways. She’s always there when I’m going through hard stuff. She’s generous with food and gifts and other thoughtful gestures.
Dear Annie: I am a 32-year-old married man with two children.
Dear Annie: I read your column daily and always like your tough love and sensible advice.
Dear Annie: New Year’s Day is approaching, and it’s time for new resolutions. I’m ashamed to say that mine will be the same it is every year. My goal is to get into shape. Each year, I start with a few workouts but quickly fall back into my old lazy routine and let my diet slip.
Dear Annie: I’ve dated my boyfriend for more than 12 years. We got along fine when his grown kids were out of the picture, but now they’re back living with him. His youngest is 21, yet he treats them like infants. The daughters are manipulating and controlling.
I am writing this letter to warn your readers about an alarming trend that I have noticed over the last decade. Namely, parents will attend their kids’ sporting events, but then spend most of the time on their smartphones.
Dear Annie: About two years ago I was pregnant with my firstborn.
Dear Annie: I was a lousy husband.
Dear Annie: With the holidays coming up, and people going here and there for dinner at others’ houses, I would like to know why some people feel they can just sit on their butts after the big meal (or before), while the others, always the same ones, get up and clean up!
Dear Annie: I’m in my last year of a pre-university study program and need to choose a university program in a couple of months.
Dear Annie: It seems impossible for me to mend my relationship with my son. He is 38 and I am 68. Back when he was 22, he came out of the closet and told us he was gay. It took me nearly two years to accept that, and two years of hardly talking. Finally, I accepted it — with a few years of counseling.
Dear Annie: I am having a problem with my mother-in-law and my husband. She is a control freak who wants to control my husband. His sister died a year ago, and his mother told him she wanted to have a memorial dinner at our house. She never spoke to me about it. In fact, she doesn’t speak to me at all, due to a prior bad experience.
Dear Annie: My husband, “Craig,” is an attentive, considerate and truly loving partner. The one quality that causes me to lose sleep is this: He is in his late 70s, yet he enjoys the attention of young women, ranging in age from their 20s to their 60s.
Dear Annie: A close friend’s father died suddenly two months ago, and she’s been distant ever since. We’re relatively young, and this is my first experience having a close friend lose a parent.
Dear Annie: Our best friend’s son just got married in July. We gave them a generous check as a gift at the beginning of June when we saw the son and his fiancee at dinner. We were not going to be attending the wedding later in the month due to a prior engagement.
Dear Annie: About 65 years ago, my 20-year-old sister, “Pat,” had an affair with a married man that resulted in the birth of my nephew, “Harry.”
Dear Annie: I always enjoy sharing my baked goods and also my soups with my neighbors. Some will return the favor by making items for me. I never expect them to reciprocate, though I know I always try to reciprocate when people do things for me.
Dear Annie: I was the one who set off a whole flurry of responses because I wrote that I hated being old, hated the wrinkles and hated the condescension and obligatory solicitousness that people showed to old people just because they were old.
Dear Annie: I’ve been in a relationship for two years now, and I have decided that he really is selfish. I’m 24, and he’s 25. Everyone in my life is fed up with him, including my parents. They tell me how I should be treated, and he’s not doing it.
Dear Annie: Recently, we had new neighbors move in beside us. They are extremely nice people, and we like them very much. However, there is one problem: They drop in unannounced.
Dear Annie: I live in the Midwest. My husband and I have a good friend who dines with us quite often, usually once or twice a week, as well as on holidays.
Dear Annie: My neighbor has a huge tree growing squarely in the middle of her yard. The tree is so big that a limb crashed down and broke part of a fence I share with another neighbor. I was left with the repair and the cleanup.
Dear Annie: I guess my question is more just about the state of my life. I went to great schools, played college sports, got married to a wonderful woman, and we have four terrific children. We live in a nice house. Yet despite all these outward appearances of success, I don’t feel satisfied.
Dear Annie: I’ve been divorced for a long time. My ex-husband, “Joe,” is living with “Sue.” She is the one who broke us up. I don’t care about that part anymore; she can have him.
Dear Annie: There is a family in our congregation, “Fred” and “Wilma,” who have two kids who are the same age as ours. My wife is friends with Wilma, and the kids all get along well. The problem is Fred. He’s a fat jerk.
Dear Annie: Having been a registered nurse for the past 40 years, I have seen many changes in health care. I believe that nursing is a calling and not just a career. In my initial, youthful bliss, I took great joy in helping people in their hour of need. Patients and families were grateful and appreciative for every little thing that was done for them.
Dear Annie: I’ve had a HUGE sweet tooth all my life. I have also always been very active, and I eat healthy foods. However, I’m nervous that this is not enough to balance my intake of sugary goodies.
Dear Annie: I have worked in the same office for 18 years. For many years, there were five of us in our division: three women and two men. One of the men left for a different job a year ago, and he was replaced by a woman, “Carla,” who is very difficult to work with. In fact, I’m convinced that she is a liar and a troublemaker.
Dear Annie: I consider myself to be a self-aware social media poster. However, there is a family member on Facebook who posts her child care needs at least once a week. She posts the day and time she needs and has said the names of the children who need a sitter. She has three children.
Dear Annie: Finding topics of conversation can often be difficult during long visits. Since “Grinding My Teeth” feels that this may be the last time she and her husband will visit with these in-laws, why not take this opportunity to encourage these people to talk about their lives?
Dear Annie: My husband of 42 years discovered a new way of breathing, and it has made me scared to death. I am afraid that he might die in his sleep.
Dear Annie: My sister started smoking cigarettes when she was 18 and still smokes today at 48. She has quit several times over the years, but then she goes back to smoking again and again. Her husband and children want her to quit, and my older brother goes ballistic on the subject -- yelling and screaming at her when she goes outside to light up.
Dear Annie: I had to respond to the letter, “Sleepless in Los Angeles,” about the 6-year-old who insisted that her parents sleep with her. My husband and I had a similar problem. I was a nurse and worked on the swing shift, which meant I did not get home till 11:30 at night. Dad had to feed our four kids and see that they had their baths and got to bed.
Dear Annie: My boss considers me a friend.
Dear Annie: I’m about to be a sophomore in college, and I am on summer break. I have not really talked to any of my friends from college since we have all been busy with internships and traveling.
Dear Annie: I’m a 30-year-old male in my first year of marriage to a charming, beautiful woman, “Sonny.” I am madly in love with this woman, and she says the same to me. This is a second marriage for both of us. Unfortunately, I’m finding out that she has lied to me about a number of things, and my love for her is being weakened by these revelations.
Dear Annie: After more than 40 years addicted to meth, and being an alcoholic, I have been clean and sober for two years now and I am nothing like the old me.
Dear Annie: Your recent letter from, “Grieving My Childhood,” reminded me of a very old German song, written by a renowned clergyman, that begins with the line, “Der Mond ist aufgegangen.”
Dear Annie: We have a son and daughter-in-law who live in Wisconsin, while we live more than 1,200 miles away in Florida.
Dear Annie: Several years ago, after my late husband passed away, I reconnected with an old friend whom I’d dated in high school.
Dear Annie: I have a problem I’ve been struggling with for quite some time. I am in my late 40s and have been married for over half my life. For the past five years or so, I have been dealing with the idea that I may be gay. I have always kind of felt that I could be, but I went the traditional route and married a man.
Dear Annie: Recently, I stayed with my niece and nephew while my brother and his wife took a trip. This seems like a trivial problem, but I know it can lead to serious health issues in the long run. Neither of my brother’s teenaged kids brushed their teeth regularly.
Dear Annie: I have a problem that many other mothers-in-law may have, but mine has a twist.
Dear Annie: Frequently, we read letters from your readers who are mystified about the fact that when they send a card or a package carefully wrapped and mailed, the recipient does not even think about the fact that love played a major role in this.
Dear Annie: I am part of a cooking club that meets the second Tuesday of each month. Each member buys food and we cook a recipe chosen by the host. There are 15 members. Each has to host once every 15 months. We are all females in our 50s or 60s.
Dear Annie: The problem is not with our son, but his wife.
Dear Annie: Recently, I got married after being single and a widow for 23 years. My husband and I are in our late 70s and very active. We went on a tour to the Midwest. There was a very attractive 70-plus woman with whom I noticed my husband flirting, and she with him. I mentioned that I did not appreciate the attention he was throwing her way, and he assured me it was all in fun.
Dear Annie: My wife and I are approaching 50 years of marriage.
Dear Annie: My boyfriend and I are coming up on our sixth anniversary.
Dear Annie: I live in a large apartment building in a very safe part of town. It’s an older building, and all of the mail for the complex is in one room. Large packages are placed by the mailbox in that room rather than brought up the four flights of stairs.
Dear Annie: I’m getting sick of my living situation. After college, I moved in with a very close family friend. He has an awesome house right by the beach and was kind enough to offer me his spare bedroom for very cheap rent while I’m still looking for a full-time job.
Dear Annie: I’m writing because I hope the person this will help most will read it.
Dear Annie: I’m a 70-year-old man happy to still be working and productive. I work with a great crew of seven other people, but I don’t know how to handle this particular situation.
Dear Annie: My son is 7 years old and is attending a soccer camp this summer. He is an average player and loves the game, and he has made friends at the camp. The problem is that one of the boys is a bully, and he targets my son all the time, calling him “a bad player” and kicking the soccer ball right in his face.
Dear Annie: I work in a big city. After work, I enjoy going to the local bar. I’ve been doing this for three years, and everything was fine -- with occasional problems -- until the past few months. Now it is what I seem to be living for.
Dear Annie: I am a grandmother who is seeking your advice about my married granddaughter. Her father is my son. Her parents divorced when the children were quite small. My son was awarded custody of my granddaughter and her brother. We did our best to provide help to our son and the children. The mother has a drug addiction. We provided monetarily, we babysat, took them food and did other similar things to help out.
Dear Annie: My husband and I are very close. We have been married for 27 years and agree on most things and share many common interests. There is only one issue where we differ, and I’d like to hear suggestions for how I can help him to change, so he will join me in my daily walks.
Dear Annie: My older brother is disabled. He was quite functional after he first had a stroke, but did not take care of himself.
Dear Annie: I will be moving soon — several states away — and I’m torn about the state of my relationship. I’ve been with my significant other for five years. That’s not something I can easily let go of. But we have been growing apart for some time now, and we’ve discussed that we both feel we’ll break up eventually.
Dear Annie: Am I the only one who feels that life is too complicated these days and that I feel absolutely powerless when it comes to calling a big company to get service? I am old enough to remember the days when we bought a television, put it in the car, drove home, plugged it in, played with the “rabbit ears” for a minute and then were able to watch TV.
Dear Annie: I will turn 65 this year and can’t help but look back on my life. For the most part, until recently at least, I was feeling very satisfied. I was married right out of college, at 22, to the wrong person, and we split up after 10 months. She has since been married four times. But I found the ideal person for me, and we were married when I turned 30 and have been together — happily — ever since.
Dear Annie: I have discovered something that your readers might find helpful, and if you agree, I hope that you will print my letter. For the past 20 years, I have wanted to lose the same 10 pounds. In fact, I have lost them dozens of times and then regained them after going off whatever diet I tried. And I have tried them all!
I just read the letter from “Missing My Son” and felt compelled to write a response. I, too, was in a bad marriage for 17 years. ...
Dear Annie: I’ve been going through a lot lately, and it’s taken an emotional toll. Among other things, I’m in love with someone I can’t have.
Dear Annie: I have a message I hope you will please share. The last several years have seen numerous natural disasters. The human toll has been great, but there are thousands of other victims that have no voice. Pets, especially cats, are left behind. I encourage all pet owners to have a disaster plan for their pets.
Dear Annie: I hope this is not out of your area, but I have a parking-related question for you.
Dear Readers: Fathers and father figures deserve more than one day of recognition for all their work and love, and the amount of beautiful words send in reflected this. Below are a few more moving tributes submitted for Father’s Day.
Dear Readers: Below are just a few of the very touching and beautiful tributes you submitted for Fathers Day. It was so nice to read about all of the love, gratitude and humor you expressed about your fathers. Happy Father's Day.
Dear Annie: My daughter was 14 weeks pregnant when the baby died.
Dear Annie: When did airplane seats become so small? I hadn’t flown in six years until this past spring, when I booked a flight to attend a family wedding. I reserved a window seat so that I could relax in comfort. But the experience was anything but comfortable.
Dear Annie: Growing up, my siblings and I would make fun of my mom’s snoring all the time. To be fair, the noise seemingly could wake the dead; she sounded like she was sawing logs every night. Her snoring became one of our favorite family jokes, and to this day it’s brought up on a pretty regular basis.
Dear Annie: I’m a mother to five beautiful children.
Dear Readers: Though I do my best to keep my personal life out of this column, I’m writing today about something that has deeply impacted me. A person very close to me was recently diagnosed with stage IV esophageal cancer.
I was overwhelmed by the love and empathy that many of you expressed for “Just Existing,” the man who was hoping to fade away from life.
Dear Annie: Our daughter, “Jenny,” is graduating from college in a few weeks, and my husband and I are very proud. We were unable to afford college, but once we had a child, we knew how important it was for her to go. My husband has worked in a factory his whole life and two years ago became a supervisor.
Dear Annie: I am a waiter in a restaurant and enjoy my job. I am 34 years old and struggled to find work that I like before I found this job. I really love being a waiter. The customers are mostly friendly, the food is good, and I try to make eating at our restaurant an enjoyable experience for all diners.
Dear Annie: Our dear grandson is 5. He’s bright, energetic, kind and wonderful.
Dear Readers: We were overwhelmed with letters about the college admissions scandal, and this is a continuation of yesterday’s column, filled with questions, criticism and praise from my many talented and brilliant readers.
Dear Readers: Many of you have strong opinions about the college admissions scandal, and because there were so many thoughtful replies, I am devoting a few columns to reprinting some of the feedback to my proposed solution of fining the parents to pay for scholarships:
Dear Annie. I have a 6-year-old daughter who won’t go to sleep on her own. She has an innate fear of staying alone in her room.
I’ve been working as professional for more than 10 years, and I’m arriving at the point in my career where I’m now responsible for spending more time meeting with clients.
Dear Annie: Recently, I met “Todd” through a friend of a friend. I went back to school to study graphic design a couple years ago and will be graduating this fall.
Dear Annie: Every summer for the past 15 years, my mother has insisted on driving 1,500 miles to spend 10 days with me. We have had some really fun visits, but now she is 88 years old and just had heart surgery. She frequently falls despite using a walker.
My three siblings and I are in a terrible situation right now over our 88-year-old mother.
Dear Annie: My best friend and I agree on almost everything, but something has come up that has caused us to argue, and we decided to turn to you for advice. We both have children who are in their first year of high school, and when they graduate they want to go to college.
Dear Annie: I recently went no-contact with my father. We had a tumultuous relationship when I was growing up because of his struggle with mental illness.
Dear Annie: My employer is conducting a weight-loss incentive program for the month of April. Whoever loses the most weight gets a $250 gift card.
Dear Annie: I love learning languages. I grew up with immigrant parents who spoke their native language to me, and I studied another language in high school. I’m also a native English speaker. I wouldn’t say I’m trilingual, but I can get by in those two languages I’ve learned aside from English.
Dear Annie: As long as I can remember, my parents have controlled the majority of my actions.
I received a great deal of helpful feedback for “Heartbroken on Valentine’s Day.” Thank you to everyone who wrote in.
My question is about the fact that they never bring anything, such as a bottle of wine, and they have never invited us out to dinner or to have dinner at their home.
Dear Readers: Spring is a beautiful season full of new beginnings. The hibernating animals come out of their slumber to play.
I am an officer in an old but still active community cemetery with graves dating back to at least the 1800s and with plenty of available space.
Dear Annie: My sister “Katy” is 10 years older than I and has never married or had children. She was a devoted and loving auntie to my kids when they were young, but they have grown up and don’t hang with her much anymore.
Dear Annie: My husband and I have been married for 48 years. We have endured really expensive medical issues over the past several years, and our funds are stretched to the limit.
Dear Annie: I am a member of a small Midwestern church and in the choir.
Dear Annie: I saw the advice about tipping a hairdresser and the shampoo person.
Dear Annie: Recently, my father-in-law retired. This has made my mother-in-law a different, not-so-kind person. She has always confided in me her worries about many different subjects, and I have always been honest but considerate of her very touchy emotions.
Dear Annie: My companion and I recently went to a very popular play that had no intermission. We were sitting in the first row of the balcony seats, and there was a short wooden wall in front of us to keep things from falling over the edge. But the result was that there was no room to move my feet and legs.
Dear Annie: Our beautiful 44-year-old daughter is making plans to be married for the third time.
Dear Annie: I enjoy my job, but my boss is a bit hit-or-miss. Sometimes he’s very friendly with me, whereas other times, he’s blunt and unforgiving.
Dear Annie: “Jeremy” and I have known each other for a few years and hung out as friends in group settings. Last year, he moved to my neighborhood, and we started occasionally grabbing a drink after work or carpooling to mutual friends’ things together.
Dear Annie: I'm wondering whether you could weigh in on a disagreement my wife and I have.
Dear Annie: For the past few years at our summer holiday party, a family friend has taken to inviting his own guests without my knowledge.
Dear Readers: The letter from a woman who is thinking about walking out on her 40-year marriage struck a chord, and many of you thought my suggestion of marriage counseling was the wrong advice, even though I said that if the counseling proved fruitless, she would know what to do.
Dear Annie: My husband and I both have adult kids from our prior lives.
Dear Annie: I’m hoping to adopt a small dog soon, and obviously, my apartment needs to be prepared.
Dear Annie: I’m a 74-year-old single man who has never been in circulation.
Dear Annie: The subject of intimacy involves almost everyone, especially couples, so I’m writing to you not necessarily for advice but in hopes of finding out whether other women relate at all to my observations and suggestions about intimacy.
Dear Annie: At what point does a child quit trying to have a relationship with her mother? Is it natural for a mother to have to call her firstborn every single time before she calls another child?
Would you please remind people to call and ask before they donate items to charity, animal shelters, nursing homes and thrift stores?
Dear Annie: There is an issue that has been going on for quite some time now, and I don’t know what to do.
Dear Annie: Here I am, 78 years old, heading into another New Year’s resolution. I’m hoping you will let me share my sentiments with your readers.
Dear Annie: I recently went on vacation with my mom, stepdad and siblings. We went to the river where my stepdad has been going for about 30 years.
ecently, a friend confronted me about something that I didn’t think was a big deal: Sometimes I forget to respond to texts for a while, and then I reply and say that I just saw the message.
Dear Annie: Politics took over as the main topic at our holiday dinner.
Dear Annie: I work as an editor at a publishing company. It has been difficult to find capable proofreaders.
Dear Annie: I am the mother of three boys.
Dear Annie: A friend and I enjoy shopping for clothes together. We always have fun.
Dear Annie: I have been a widow for almost 10 years.
Dear Annie: A couple with whom I have a very close relationship have recently become friends with their new neighbors.
Dear Annie: I got engaged in June 2017. My fiance and I are planning the wedding for next year, in November 2019. But I’m having some doubts about my fiance. He
Dear Annie: I have a full-time job, and I love it.
Dear Annie: A therapist recommended that I try EMDR in order to process past traumas. It sounds intriguing and fancy, but I don’t really understand what it involves.
Dear Annie: I love being a grandpa, but it seems all my fellow adults have a totally different impression of what a grandfather is supposed to be. My wife says I should be a role model and authority figure, which to me translates to being stern and official. Our daughter says essentially the same thing as her mother.
Dear Annie: Two years ago, I met a homeless man and took him in.
Dear Annie: I have a sibling who struggles with an eating disorder. I give her constant love and support and do everything I can to help her.
Dear Annie: I was recently out of town for a long weekend with some girlfriends.
For years, I’ve used ziplock bags for storing leftovers. Over the past two years, he’s insisted on buying a kind that has to be lined up perfectly to be pressed together. I hate these bags, and he knows it.
Dear Annie: I want to do therapy, but I don’t think I can afford it right now.
Dear Annie: What is the etiquette with handicapped stalls in restrooms? When I go into a public restroom and there are multiple stalls to choose from, I like to go with the handicapped one because it’s roomier.
Dear Annie: I have a tricky problem going on right now. I am married and have been for a while — 20-plus years. It’s been a typical marriage, with its ups and downs, but I’d say I’ve been fairly content and things have been pretty good.
Dear Annie: We would like your advice before there is a problem. We will be moving later this year to live with our son and his family.
Dear Annie: My sister and I grew up in a pretty troubled home.
Dear Annie: A former co-worker of my husband’s invited us to his son’s wedding. We received the usual “save the date” card one year prior to the ceremony. For the whole year, he asked us whether we would be attending every other week.
Dear Annie: My son and his wife hardly ever really clean their house.
Dear Annie: I am an active member of my small community and have served on many boards, including as an elected official.
Time for these ghouls to go haunt somewhere else.
Dear Annie: I’ve always been great at gift-giving. I enjoy giving others things that they will thoroughly enjoy.
Dear Annie: My father has late-stage Alzheimer’s and is in a nursing home.
Annie: My husband has adult children from his first wife. My new daughter-in-law has become quite vocal about jewelry items that I wear.
Several weeks ago, someone requested that I pose a question to my readers that Ann Landers asked in 1975: “If you had to do it all over again, would you have kids?”
Dear Annie: My niece, “Becky,” is getting married next month, and according to my younger brother “John,” I can’t attend the wedding because I have a beard.
Dear Annie: Ever meet someone who plays the victim and always needs a villain in her life?
Dear Annie: I live in a neighborhood with two non-state-maintained roads. One is a long, straight, steep hill with about 20 residences. My neighbor “Sally” lives in the middle of the hill. She lets her pets roam free in her yard and has toddler grandchildren.
My wife has been guarding her phone since I found out she had been texting a guy she first claimed was a childhood friend.
Dear Annie: My husband of over 30 years is a great person, successful and well-educated. I love him dearly except for one annoying thing. He draws on people’s photos in magazines and newspapers.
I am always fascinated to hear diametrically opposed yet equally valid viewpoints. Such was the case with the following two letters, which appeared in my inbox on the same day in response to “Undecided in Ohio,” who isn’t sure whether she wants kids. Read on. ...
Dear Annie: I am seeking some advice. I have a disability, and my place of employment is discriminating against me based on that disability.
Dear Annie: I am married to a man with two children from a previous marriage.