Dear Mr. Dad: I'm a single dad -- my wife left me with the baby right after our son was born. He's now four and keeps asking where his mommy is. I try to keep in touch with her and ask her to spend time with her son, but she's not interested. I've also been dating a lot, hoping to meet women so my son can have some positive female role models in...Read more
I'm a big toaster. For years at Thanksgiving I tried to kick off the dinner by raising our glasses together and counting our blessings. We are a yours, mine, and ours bonusfamily and the people at the table are an uncommon bunch. There are exes and current partners, there are kids from each coupling that have all been raised together -- and now ...Read more
Dear Mr. Dad: Over the past month, I don't think there's been a day without a news story of some famous person being accused of sexual assault or harassment. I'm disgusted by these men's behavior, but I'm concerned that one group of victims is being left out: men who are assaulted or harassed by women. At my last job, my female boss frequently ...Read more
Q: My kids' dad and I broke up about four months ago. This is our first big holiday and in doing research on the subject, I've read some sources that say you should spend the holidays with your child's other parent and other sources that say you should not. Once and for all, what's right? I'm tired of making mistakes. What's good ex-etiquette?
Dear Mr. Dad: A few weeks ago, you gave some great general guidelines for childproofing. How 'bout some details for specific parts of the house?
A: You almost beat me to the punch! As promised, here they are.
IN THE KITCHEN
-- Keep high chairs a few feet away from walls. Babies' legs are plenty strong enough to push off the wall and knock ...Read more
Q: My partner asked me how I'd feel if she had a sleepover with her ex this Christmas so that they can both spend the whole day with their son. I have always understood wanting to do things for the sake of their child; however, there is history concerning her ex being abusive and manipulating (mainly to try and get me out of the picture). Every ...Read more
Dear Mr. Dad: Just after our first trimester, my wife and I lost our baby. I've been focusing on being there for her and supporting her every way I can. But this miscarriage has hit me pretty hard too and I'm having a tough time coping. Part of the problem is I feel guilty about having feelings at all -- after all, she's the one who had the ...Read more
Q. My ex was in the service and traveled all over the world. He recently retired and settled in Hawaii, where he was last stationed. We had one child who lived predominantly with me but was attached at the hip to his father whenever he came home. We broke up last year. I stayed in California and he stayed in Hawaii. We had an agreement that our ...Read more
The Fantastic Phantasmic Detective AgencyD.L. Dugger
Abby, Toby, and Billy are ordinary detectives with extraordinary clients: G-G-Ghosts!
It's just another summer day of hunting frogs for twelve-year-old Billy, Abby, and Toby, when they stumble upon a deserted lake cabin and meet Mary, a real live ghost, ...
Dear Mr. Dad: I always seem to be hearing about children who are seriously injured (or worse) in their own houses. We just brought our new baby home from the hospital, but I want to start getting our house childproofed right now. How should we start and what should we do?
A: When it comes to your child's safety, there's no such thing as too ...Read more
I've told this story many times -- and I'd like to tell it again to hit home that I personally understand how hard it is to practice good ex-etiquette. That's the reason I came up with the ten rules -- I needed a rule book to remind me to put the children first. (Ex-etiquette for parents rule No. 1) when dealing with all the exes in my life. So....Read more
Dear Mr. Dad: I read your column on grammar mistakes, and I honestly don't know what the big deal is. You're obviously an elitist snob, so it makes a difference to you. But, what about the rest of us? Why should we care?
A: The response to last week's column on grammar mistakes was huge, and while a few readers agree with your assessment that I...Read more
Q. My wife is trying to get me to pay for all the divorce costs. We were married for two years. The wedding ring from our marriage is a family heirloom from my mother's side. I think my wife and I should split the cost of our divorce and when I told her that, she handed me the ring and said, "This should pay for anything I owe you." Our marriage...Read more
Q: My daughter's father was verbally abusive when we were together and continues to be to this day. Exchanging our child is the worst! Just yesterday he stood in the middle of the street and yelled profanities at me. I have tried to get along with him for years. He blames it on me. I blame it on him. We just can't co-parent. What's good ex-...Read more
Dear Readers: Those of you who've been reading this column for a while know that I'm something of a language purist. That said, I understand that English is constantly changing and try to stay current on the latest vocabulary words -- the folks at Merriam-Webster add about 1,000 every year -- and the ways we use them (five years ago, who had ...Read more
Dear Mr. Dad: My husband fancies himself something of a nutrition expert and has been insisting that everyone in our family -- that's him, our two sons, a daughter, and I -- drink three glasses of milk every day. He says we need the calcium and protein. But I've been reading lately that milk might not be quite as important as all that. Who's ...Read more
Q: I have this new girlfriend who I find very sexy. We are very attracted to each other. When is it okay for her to sleep over when the kids are at my house?
A: I'm not sure why this question is asked so often because it seems like a no-brainer to me. All you have to do is ask yourself what you want to portray to your kids. (Ex-etiquette for ...Read more
Dear Mr. Dad: Back when I was in high school, all I wanted was to be independent. I wanted more responsibility, a job so I could have my own spending money, and I was obsessed with getting a girlfriend. Despite my parents' warnings, I experimented with drinking alcohol and, well, a few other things. I'm asking because my two teens have zero ...Read more
Q: I have been divorced for five years. It was an amicable divorce. We both have been in long-term relationships. Our kids are grown and have their own families. My ex is still a HUGE part of my family. Goes to events, holidays if I'm not there and my family spends time with him all the time. Call me selfish but, when does this end? While I'm ...Read more
Dear Mr. Dad: My baby is 4 months old and my wife has been breastfeeding her since day one. She thinks it's about time for the baby to start eating real food. What are the best foods to feed her and how do we start?
A: Hold on. Four months is too soon to wean your baby. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that infants have nothing but...Read more
Q: I am dating a new guy after 10 years of being with an abusive ex. By abusive, I mean he broke my jaw when I refused to make him dinner. He's very angry I've moved on (he cheated), so when I see him out and about, I cling to my boyfriend for dear life. Yesterday we were at the mall and there was my ex in the parking lot. He sees us together, I...Read more