Dear Abby: Mom tries to patch rift between two daughters
Dear Abby

Dear Abby: Mom tries to patch rift between two daughters

DEAR ABBY: I have three beautiful daughters. The oldest moved to Wisconsin some years ago. About a year ago, my middle daughter went to visit her. My older daughter said something about politics that the younger one didn't like, and since then the younger one refuses to communicate with her, which is breaking my heart. My older daughter asked if I could help by talking to her. They used to be close and now this.

I tried talking to the younger one. She said she loves her older sister and for me to let her handle it. She promised she would contact her. It has been three months and -- nothing. What can I do? -- MOM REFEREE IN OREGON

DEAR MOM REFEREE: Too many things have become politicized lately, and it is to the detriment of relationships both personal and professional. If "change begins at home," let it start with you. Step back, stop counting the days and refuse to be put in the middle of this. Whatever their disagreement was, the problem is theirs to resolve, not yours.

DEAR ABBY: A few months ago, new neighbors moved in next door. They have been very nice and helpful. I work a lot, so they have done things like grab packages or take care of little things like bringing in my trash can.

I have thanked them many times, but three weeks ago I decided to do something extra special. I bought a lovely thank-you card and put a $100 restaurant gift card inside. I knocked on their door and handed it to the husband.

Abby, I haven't received any type of thank-you from them. I don't want to seem petty, but part of me is hurt by their lack of acknowledgment. Do you think that because they helped me out, they felt they deserved my gift and a thank-you wasn't necessary? I am at the point where I no longer want them to do anything for me. Am I being petty, or do I have a right to feel hurt? -- UNAPPRECIATED IN NEW YORK

DEAR UNAPPRECIATED: Yes, you are being petty. You are essentially bemoaning not getting a thank-you for a thank-you. Your neighbors may not have said anything because they were overwhelmed by your generosity. The next time you see the husband or the wife, ASK if your display of gratitude may have made them uncomfortable. But in the interest of good relations, please stop judging them as harshly as you have.

DEAR ABBY: My sister was spring cleaning recently and came across a 14-karat gold crucifix pendant she had found in front of our family's house decades ago. Being nonreligious, my sister didn't know what to do with it. She didn't want to be disrespectful by improperly disposing of it, so she kept it. Is there an organization that handles this sort of thing? -- RESPECTFULLY NOT RELIGIOUS

DEAR R.N.R.: If selling the crucifix doesn't interest you, contact the nearest Christian church and talk to someone there about donating it so it can be given to someone who needs it, such as a recent convert or a newly confirmed young person. I am sure your offer would be appreciated.

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DEAR ABBY: I am 43, and my boyfriend is 40. He is always at my house, but I can never go to his to sit around and relax. When I get upset about it and want to talk to him about it, he tells me that's not the case at all. I'm welcome anytime. But when I suggest it, I am always turned down. I'm trying hard to be optimistic, but I have so many negative thoughts about this. What should I do? -- KEPT OUT IN ALABAMA

DEAR ABBY: My longtime friend "Bonnie" and I have been reconnecting during COVID, mostly via text and video chatting. She's recently moved back to my area (she's in the military), so we spent a weekend together helping her move in. It was exhausting and stressful, and her drinking concerned me. I know drinking is prevalent in the military, and as a relatively high-ranking officer, she's under a lot of pressure all the time.

DEAR ABBY: I'm in my early 30s. I live and work in a beach town and visit the ocean often on my time off. I have a large tattoo on my side, and while it's tasteful and well done, it depicts nudity (an angel). It's always covered by a shirt and never exposed at work.-- TATTED IN FLORIDA

DEAR ABBY: I'm in high school. My boyfriend lives across the country in a different state. He is a teenager, too. I have asked people for advice about this before and mostly gotten the same answer. They say, "Wait 'til you're older," or, "Your mom is just looking out for you." I don't believe it. -- STRUGGLING IN PENNSYLVANIA

DEAR ABBY: "Darlene" and I have been friends for 40 years. She moved to Arizona with me in the '80s from Michigan. Her boyfriend drove out and convinced her to return to Michigan and get married, which she did, but she's always hated Michigan. She raised two girls. I was always called "Aunt" and was considered close.

DEAR ABBY: My husband of nearly 22 years and I divorced last year after he told me he didn't want to be married anymore and didn't know if he ever loved me. Since our split, he has bought a home with another woman -- the same woman I suspected him of having an affair with, and the same woman he encouraged me to befriend during our marriage. 

DEAR ABBY: I have been in a relationship with the same man for 15 years. For the last six, we have been living together. He's a machinist who owns his own business and works strict hours of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday-Friday. Sometimes he locks his doors at 5 and works an hour or two later, but he doesn't call to let me know he is working late. I have told him calling is common courtesy. Sometimes he does it, but more often he does not. He thinks it's "ridiculous" that I would wonder where he is, and if I want to know, I can call his shop.

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