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Ask Amy: Germ risks also contaminate relationships

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Readers: Every year during this time I step away from my column to work on other creative projects. I hope you enjoy these “Best Of” Q&A from 10 years ago. Today’s topic is: “Germ Donors!”

I also invite readers to subscribe to my weekly “Asking Amy” newsletter, at Amydickinson.substack.com, where I post advice, as well as ...Read more

Happy Host Declines Help In The Kitchen With A Poem

Life Advice / Dear Abby /

DEAR ABBY: I have seen letters in your column from people upset that their guests don't help them after dinner. I am the opposite. I held onto a poem you printed years ago and had it perma-plaqued and posted on a kitchen cabinet.

For more than 20 years, my husband and I hosted a dinner every Sunday after church. I set the table for 10, but we ...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: Worried in Illinois

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: My ex-daughter-in-law's brother would have been sleeping on the streets for the past two years if it weren't for my husband. He's been paying rent for "Gary," who has not received any help from the other members of the family.

Gary has been unemployed for five years. He was living with my ex-daughter-in-law, her boyfriend and my ...Read more

Science Advice Goddess: Smear Pressure

I'm a college sophomore, and my boyfriend is a senior. He's a football player, and other girls have crushes on him. Recently, he was with his guy friends at a party. A girl came over and said I'd slapped her across the face. I've never even met her! Why would she do this?

--Mystified

Women are seen as the kinder, gentler sex because ...Read more

New Boyfriend And Ex Have Same Name

Life Advice / Sense & Sensitivity /

DEAR HARRIETTE: I met a really nice guy a few weeks ago, and we've been getting along really well. We've been on a couple of dates, we text all the time and I'm starting to really like him. There's just one problem that I really cannot seem to get past: He has the same first name as my ex-boyfriend. Their name is kind of on the uncommon side, so...Read more

Accidental Birthday Suit Sighting

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: What is the etiquette if you accidentally see someone naked -- say, in the house that you share?

I went to brush my teeth quite late at night, later than I am normally up, and my housemate threw open his door -- stark bollock naked -- to find the cat.

We each managed to stammer out a sorry as we went to different rooms, and ...Read more

Notes on Narcissism

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Readers: The issue of dealing with a narcissist in the family struck a chord and prompted a number of letters offering insights and advice. Most were pretty disheartening because narcissists rarely change. Here are two interesting ones:

Dear Annie: This is a message to the sister in distress because of the abusive behavior of her sister-...Read more

Ask Amy: Couple’s problems will be baked in

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Readers: Every year during this time I step away from my column to work on other creative projects. I hope you enjoy these “Best Of” Q&A from 10 years ago. Today’s topic is: “Homeworking.”

I also invite readers to subscribe to my weekly “Asking Amy” newsletter, at Amydickinson.substack.com, where I post advice, as well as ...Read more

Boyfriend Takes Charge After Couple Moves Into His House

Life Advice / Dear Abby /

DEAR ABBY: I have been with the same man for almost 30 years. We are not married and have no children together. He is 15 years older than I am.

We have been living in his house for the past seven years. I feel more like a renter than a partner in this relationship. I give him money every month, and we sleep in separate rooms. He wants to ...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: Certified School Nurse

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: As a youth anti-tobacco advocate, I'm incredibly proud of our country's progress against tobacco. We've cut smoking among high school seniors by nearly 70% since 1997. I know we can make the next generation tobacco-free, but we've got a lot of work left to do.

Tobacco is still the No. 1 cause of preventable death in our country. It ...Read more

Landlord's Son Won't Clean Up After Himself

Life Advice / Sense & Sensitivity /

DEAR HARRIETTE: My friend's mother has been nice enough to let me rent out a room in her home. I've been staying with them for a few months now, and I pay only a few hundred dollars each month for rent -- a great deal considering I live in Los Angeles.

The only issue is my friend's older brother does not clean up after himself at all. We have ...Read more

Pre-Pandemic Gaffe Seemed Funny Then, But Alarming Now

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: Before the pandemic, I attended, along with a few other colleagues, a casual dinner party hosted by my boss. The six of us were gathered around the kitchen island, enjoying hors d'oeuvres and wine. I was drinking a glass of red.

My boss placed onto the island our buffet-style meal, including a bubbling macaroni-and-cheese ...Read more

Keep It Separated

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: My husband and I have been married for 12 years. Overall, I think we have a great marriage. All marriages have an area where they struggle, and ours is children.

We were both married previously, and all of our children are from our previous marriages. But we consider them "ours." They still have relationships with the other ...Read more

Ask Amy: Facebook forces friendship fractures

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Readers: Every year during this time I step away from my column to work on other creative projects. I hope you enjoy these “Best Of” Q&A from 10 years ago. Today’s topic is: “Friending.”

I also invite readers to subscribe to my weekly “Asking Amy” newsletter, at Amydickinson.substack.com, where I post advice, as well as ...Read more

Mom Feels Powerless To Cure What Ails Her Adult Daughter

Life Advice / Dear Abby /

DEAR ABBY: My daughter is in her early 20s. When she was younger, she was happy. She socialized, had friends and had fun. She has had several boyfriends, but unfortunately, nothing that panned out.

She feels the only way to be comfortable or worth anything is to have a guy by her side. I think she goes about it in the wrong way. She has few ...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: The Middle Sister

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: My oldest and youngest sisters are 10 years apart. They used to be good friends, but in the past three years, something apparently happened and now they can't stand to be in the same room together. At family events, the tension is awful. They can't talk to one another without condescension and sarcasm.

My parents and I are caught in...Read more

Millenial Life: Blood Doesn't Guarantee Family

Family lore from my dad's side goes like this: Decades ago, an aunt I've never met drove to my grandfather's house, walked up to the house with her toddler in her arms and rang the bell. When her father came to the door, she told him, "This is my son -- and you'll never get to know him." She turned around and left.

When I heard the story for ...Read more

Conflicting COVID Weddings

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: After months of careful planning, my daughter had to postpone her wedding reception last March because of the pandemic. She and her fiance made the difficult decision to go ahead with the wedding itself -- with only four people attending -- and reschedule the reception for later this year. They set the date for 20 months after the ...Read more

Ask Amy: Facebook posts create relationship problems

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Readers: Every year during this time I step away from my column to work on other creative projects. I hope you enjoy these (edited) “Best Of” Q&As from 10 years ago.

Today’s topic is: Unsocial media.

I also invite readers to subscribe to my weekly “Asking Amy” newsletter, at Amydickinson.substack.com, where I post a favorite Q&A...Read more

Couple Works To Overcome Revelation Of Man's Affair

Life Advice / Dear Abby /

DEAR ABBY: I have been married to my husband for 13 years. He has lied about little things and also about emotional relationships he has had with co-workers. It went on for years, as he moved from one job to another.

A few months ago, I found out from the other woman that he'd had a sexual affair with her. He had been in counseling for months ...Read more