Annie's Mailbox for 3/4/2018
Dear Annie: I'm 18, and my parents recently went through a messy divorce. First my mom moved out. Then my dad moved out a month later because Mom didn't want him living in our house. She wanted to move back in.
I have an older sister and a younger brother. Mom tried to convince us that she missed being with us. But since she moved back in, she is always on the phone or computer or out with her friends. She says it's her time to have fun and that we're always criticizing her. She also badmouths my father and tells me things about him that no parent should say. I've asked her to stop multiple times, but she won't.
I work long hours in order to contribute to our rent and utilities. My sister and I are essentially raising our younger brother, who has been struggling in school and acting out. Mom is oblivious. I recently got into a huge argument with her about how I spend my money. We didn't speak for two weeks because she ignored all of my attempts to talk about it. After a while, I stopped trying.
Now Mom always favors my sister in any disagreement. We used to be close, but I've lost all respect for her. What should I do? I seriously need some advice. -- Lost Child
Dear Lost: The divorce has sent your mother over the edge. All of you are under a great deal of stress, and your brother's problems are undoubtedly intensified by all the chaos in the home. Please talk to your father. Being divorced does not mean he has given up his obligations and responsibilities as a parent. Do not place blame. Simply start by telling Dad that your brother is having problems in school that aren't being addressed. If you have grandparents, aunts and uncles, lean on them for emotional support when you need to. Your job may offer an employee assistance program that could help, or if you are attending school, talk to your school counselor.
Dear Annie: I am home in bed with the flu. In fact, this is the fourth time in the past four months that I've missed work due to a virus. I've used up my sick leave, so I'm not earning any money, and a lot of my work isn't getting done by the part-time volunteer who fills in for me.
Why am I sick so much? Because business associates come in, lean over my shoulder and say things like, "I ought to be at home. I'm so sick." I've even had clients come in saying they left work feeling ill, but thought they'd stop to see me before they went home. If you are too sick to be in your office, you are too sick to be in mine.
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When I ask folks to steer clear if they are ill, I'm told that I am unsympathetic and rude. If I miss any more work, I won't be able to pay my bills. How can I convince people that illness belongs at home? -- Sick of Being Sick
Dear Sick: People mistakenly believe it shows loyalty to come to work sick, and unfortunately, many bosses idiotically encourage this attitude. But the end result is more employees contaminating the work environment and getting sick. We can only recommend that you get your daily dose of vitamins and wash your hands frequently.
Dear Annie: This is in response to "Grandma," with the sloppy granddaughter. A co-worker told me what she did. After repeated arguments with her sloppy daughter, she got a big garbage bag and tossed in everything her daughter neglected to put away, including shoes, purses, dresses, cosmetics and electronics.
One day her daughter asked, "Have you seen my red shoe?" Mom said she'd have to pay a "finder's fee" to get anything out of the bag. That was the end of her sloppy ways. -- Enlightened
This Classic Annie's Mailbox column was originally published in 2012. To find out more about Classic Annie's Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit Creators Syndicate at www.creators.com.