Life Advice



Ask Amy: Widower’s new woman plays out old story

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Don’t help her! The more you sisters “gang up” on her, the harder your father will cling.

Despite your own loss and grief, you likely have no idea of what his loss has been like and what his needs are.

You’re going to have to do the hardest thing a loved one can do: Respect your father’s right to make choices about his own life (even if they are bad choices); maintain a cordial relationship with her (if she is the gatekeeper to seeing him); never trash or disrespect her (even if you can’t stand her).

Here is what you convey: “We love you. We want you to be happy. Your partner isn’t very nice to us, and we worry about you, but you have the right to make your own choices. We’ll always be your daughters, we’ll always be here for you, and we’ll do our best to be supportive, no matter what. Dad, let’s just promise that we will always keep the door open.”

Dear Amy: Why are so many women willing to give up so much just to be with a man?

I see so many questions to you regarding mistreatment by men, and yet the women have to turn to you for advice as to whether they should stay in the relationship?


Has society really convinced so many women that they can’t be happy without a man?

Your thoughts?

— Wondering

Dear Wondering: I don’t think that this behavior is exclusive to women.


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