DEAR ABBY: After an unhappy, sexless 12-year marriage, I divorced my husband. Six months later I met a handsome, divorced dermatologist on the Internet. We were immediately attracted to each other and, six weeks later, he invited me to move in with him, which I did.
Last week after I picked up our clothes at the dry cleaner and checked them as I loaded them into the car, I came across an expensive black lace bra, size 36DD. (I am a small B.) I became very upset -- I tend to be the jealous type -- and threw it out the sunroof of my car onto the freeway on my way home.
When my boyfriend got home from his medical meeting that night, I confronted him. He told me it had to have been mistakenly added to our order, and asked me what I had done with it. When I said I had thrown it out, he became irate and ordered me to look for it.
The next day, his friend (a lawyer) called me and told me the bra was evidence in a sexual assault case. He said it had DNA on it and he needed it for court. He said I should go back to the freeway and look for it. I did, but could not locate it.
I feel guilty for losing my temper and for possibly causing the lawyer to lose this important case. My boyfriend is still mad at me. How can I make this right?
-- TRUSTING IN L.A.
DEAR TRUSTING: You need to develop a strong sense of skepticism. I have heard some tall tales in my time, but the one the lawyer told you takes the cake.
If the bra was evidence of a felony in a court of law, it would have been in police custody, not your laundry hamper. Also, once it had been through the dry cleaning process, any DNA would have been compromised.
Your boyfriend is not only a cheater, he's also trying to avoid buying the woman a replacement bra. Rather than trying to make this right, you should be shedding the skin doctor.
DEAR ABBY: I need help deciding what to do about my last name. I am going through a divorce and am not sure if I should return to my maiden name.
I was married more than 35 years and my children are grown with families of their own. Many women have told me they wouldn't keep their married name -- that a divorce is a new start, and I'm not "that person" anymore.
It's just that I'm so used to my married name -- but then again, I only took the name because I got married. Please help me decide. -- IN NAME ONLY, PHOENIX
DEAR IN NAME ONLY: The women who are urging you to take back your maiden name are doing so because they wanted to close an unhappy chapter in their lives and have as few reminders as possible. There are no hard-and-fast rules about this subject. If you are comfortable using your married name, then continue to do so. If you wouldn't mind correcting people who have known you for the last 35 years and telling them, "My name is now ..." then go ahead and change it.
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