DEAR ABBY: I was involved with a man ("Mike") I cared deeply about. One day he came to me saying he had a "secret" he needed to share. He explained that he was in love with another woman, and they had decided to get back together. I asked him all the normal questions. He explained as best as he could and apologized.
Three weeks later, Mike called me and told me he missed me and thought he had made a mistake. I went over and stayed the night. I didn't call him after that, but now he's calling me all the time.
Mike is still involved with the woman he broke up with me for. I have asked him repeatedly to leave me alone, but he is now offering me money and promising to pay my bills if I will be involved with him while he's with this other woman.
I need your advice. I could use the help financially, but I don't want to get involved with this situation because my feelings are at risk. — FRAGILE IN FLORIDA
DEAR FRAGILE: I wonder if the woman Mike reconciled with has a clue that he is cheating already. He does not care about you or have your best interests at heart. He's attempting to put your relationship on a cash-on-delivery basis not out of concern for your financial difficulties but because he has no respect for your integrity. How insulting! Although you may need financial help, if you value your self-respect, turn him down. And from now on, block his calls because Mike is bad news.
DEAR ABBY: I have been living with intense grief and depression for a number of years. I have tried every way imaginable to deal with it, to no avail. I am no longer interested in fighting it. I have had suicidal ideation for years but haven't acted on it because of the pain it would cause my family.
Now it appears I have an answer. I have discovered that I have cancer. I have decided to do nothing about it and let it take me. I'm just not sure whether or not to tell my family.
I am inclined to say nothing until it's too late, but I fear this decision will cause them as much pain as if I had died by my own hand. I don't want to be here, and I don't think I should have to be simply because others expect it. I don't have a close relationship with my family anyway, if that has any bearing. We speak infrequently at best. Your thoughts, please? — DONE WITH IT
DEAR DONE: I am sorry for your despair. You say your only question is whether to tell your family about your diagnosis because of the pain it may cause them, although you are not close and communicate infrequently. If you have truly made up your mind to refuse treatment, I vote for not informing them, which could be construed as trying to put them on a guilt trip. Everyone has a right to make this highly personal decision for themselves, but I hope you will remain in touch with your doctor, which may lessen any physical or psychological suffering you experience during the course of your disease.