Life Advice





On Houseguests Who Rearrange Your Furniture

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: Aloha! I've hosted many houseguests over the years, most with no problems, but occasionally I've had a few bad ones. How do you handle people who come into your home and totally rearrange everything to suit themselves?

I believe in being as accommodating and hospitable as I can. But I had two incidents of people who wanted ...Read more

A Gift Wasted?

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: Without trying to sound arrogant, I am smarter than the average bear. Not quite a genius but certainly up there. I won all kinds of academic awards in school and hold three degrees.

But my problem is this: I am now 48, the mother of two children with special needs. I have spent most of my life being their caregiver (for which I do ...Read more

Ask Amy: Friend worries about pandemic’s toxic effect

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: I am very concerned about a former co-worker.

I met "Gerry" two years ago when we were on the same project team.

Gerry was a funny person and has been very open about her mental health struggles.

After the project ended, we went our separate ways, but continued to follow each other on Instagram.

When the pandemic hit, Gerry would ...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: Valentines for Vets

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: For many years, your compassionate readers have brightened the lives of America's hospitalized veterans by participating in the Valentines for Vets program during Salute to Hospitalized Veterans Week (Feb. 12-18). This program encourages readers to deliver valentines and visit with veterans at their local Department of Veterans ...Read more

Friend Offers Unsolicited Advice -- Even To Strangers

Life Advice / Sense & Sensitivity /

DEAR HARRIETTE: The other day, I brought my friend to a dinner party as my plus-one. By the end of the night, she was telling the host (who had cooked the food) how she could improve on a few of her recipes. I've watched my friend be overly critical before. She's done this to my family members in the past, but they understand that that's just ...Read more

'Other Woman' Rebuilds Her Life After Affair Fizzles

Life Advice / Dear Abby /

DEAR ABBY: I'm a 38-year-old woman who used to be nice. Then I had a three-year affair. Knowing I'm one of America's bigger fools -- and for such a long time -- is infuriating, but I finally saw the light. The only person I think is a bigger fool than me is his wife.

Some highlights of our romance: He gave me an STD during spring break, I found...Read more

You Don't Owe This Lady Any Butter

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I am an older gay man, and married my husband three years ago. A college friend, female, invited me, just me, to her family's lakeside cottage for the weekend.

I spent many wonderful times at that cottage ever since college. This friend's entire family considered me family, right up until I got married. I invited her, her ...Read more

Words Fail a Writer

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: I am a published author and have been struggling to write my next book. I've written a handful of adult-oriented fictional books. My most recent published book came out almost five years ago. I've tried several times to start the next book, but I haven't been able to get any thoughts together or gather any momentum in the writing ...Read more

Ask Amy: Parents worry about daughter’s choices

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: I'm concerned about my 24-year-old daughter's choice in a boyfriend. She is an intelligent college graduate, working in her field.

She met her boyfriend at work, and they quickly became serious. He is an unskilled laborer in the company’s warehouse, working there since high school.

He moved into her apartment. He works just enough ...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: Nevada Daughter

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: I am a divorced, 53-year-old female living in Las Vegas, and I have a divorced sister who lives in South Carolina. I am retired and work part time. My sister also is retired, but shortly after she moved to South Carolina, she was unable to walk or stand for any length of time. Doctors said a broken back from an accident years ago was...Read more

Can Anyone Use Automatic Door Button?

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: On a trip to our local library, I used my elbow to activate the entrance door by pressing the handicap button on the side. I did this to avoid touching the door handle. My 7-year-old daughter said she thought it was inappropriate for me to use the button, as I am not disabled.

I started to explain why it was acceptable for ...Read more

Not Responding to Texts Right Away

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: Recently, 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. Technically, most of the time, it's a lie; I did see the message, and I just got sidetracked or zoned out or didn't feel like replying until ...Read more

Ask Amy: Picking up the tab is wearing thin

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: I have a long-standing platonic friendship with “Brian.” He was recently diagnosed with a very serious illness.

I have always and often treated Brian to restaurant meals and entertainment. I have more than he does, and I am genuinely happy to do this.

However, lately, he's asked me to take him and also his incoming visitor friend...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: Too Old

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: I am a 26-year-old guy who is pretty quiet. I really don't go out anywhere except to the mall on weekends.

A few months ago, a girl started working at one of the places I frequent. I could tell she was interested in me the first time I saw her, and she has become increasingly friendly. She recently asked me what my name is.

I like ...Read more

Friends Want To Change Vacation Tradition

Life Advice / Sense & Sensitivity /

DEAR HARRIETTE: My four best friends and I have been taking annual vacations every spring since we were 23. We're planning another vacation now, and my friends want to bring new people I've never heard of before. I don't think it will be the same if we bring a bunch of new people. I want to tell them that I'm not comfortable with adding new ...Read more

Man's Anger Begins To Boil Over In Everyday Exchanges

Life Advice / Dear Abby /

DEAR ABBY: I am becoming more and more irritated with people. My fuse is short and I'm prone to bursts of anger. Today I watched another driver run a red light, and I proceeded to honk my horn, lower my window and give the guy my middle finger. (Yeah, I know it was risky, but I couldn't resist the impulse.)

I am sick of people! They are, in my ...Read more

Single File: In Love With a Married Woman

Life Advice / Single File /

DEAR SUSAN: I'm in love with a married woman. She knows but says she won't ever leave her marriage because it gives her the security she never had. She tells me about her bedroom activities, saying she hopes I find someone as sexy as she is. But honestly, I'm in love with her forever. I can't look at another woman. Am I doomed to wait for her ...Read more

Antonio Guillem/Dreamstime/TNS

Erika Ettin: Be a stand-up person. Don't stand someone up.

Life Advice / Dating Advice /

It was 11 a.m. on a recent Sunday. My friend Stephanie was looking forward to meeting her date for a brunch they had scheduled over a dating app. She got there on time, sat down at a table and waited, assuming she had just beaten him there. When she finally texted him to ask where he was, she saw he had written, “I’m here.”

She looked ...Read more


Barton Goldsmith: There just aren't enough nice people in the world

Life Advice / Dating Advice /

My mother-in-law is going home to Europe after an extended stay, and I am going to really miss her. Since we’ve been living in COVID-world, life has been much less social, and having this very nice person around — even when we don’t speak the same language — just made life more pleasant.

She and my wife were always laughing, and I mean ...Read more

Confusing Family Reunion With Fundraising Event

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: Our extended family just had a weeklong reunion at a rental house on the shore. I organized it and initially paid the full rent. All week long, family members thanked me graciously in a tone of voice that seemed to indicate they knew I had paid.

The final day, one of my brothers handed me a check for 30% of the rent. I ...Read more